YEAR OF NEWS :
Tuesday, January 10, 2017
Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Centre Malaysia invited Ven. Chang-Yuan, director of Dharma Drum Mountain’s Meditation Activity Department in Taiwan, to lead an intermediate Chan meditation course at the Centre on October 29 and 30, 2016. The venerable used metaphors to show participants how to practice Chan in daily life, helping them gain a deeper understanding and experience of Chan practice.
“Chan” has become a fashionable word these days, as can be seen in expressions such as the “Chan of tea”, the “Chan of painting”, and the “Chan of reading”. To many people, “Chan” seems to signify freedom and spontaneity. However, are these activities really relevant to the essentials of Chan practice?
Dharma Drum Mountain Fellowship Singapore held a two-day basic meditation class on February 21, 2016, with 52 participants guided by several senior practitioners who had passed DDM’s meditation teachers training program. Starting at 9:30 a.m. the course began with an introduction to the structure of Chan practice and functions of meditation, including explanations on various meditation postures, how to experience relaxation, count the breath, do the Eight-form Moving Meditation, and practice walking meditation, as well as apply Chan teachings in daily life. Participants were all keen to learn and enthusiastic to interact with their senior instructors.
A single lamp can dispel the thousand-year-old darkness instantly.
Offering light to the Buddha helps develop our wisdom infinitely.
Lighting lamps in front of the Buddha signifies inviting the light of wisdom radiated by the Buddha to illuminate sentient beings’ afflictive ignorance. On February 21, the day before the Lantern Festival, Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Centre Malaysia held a Dharma assembly to avail more devotees the opportunity to light a lamp before the Buddha’s statue.
It is long past the time for the phenomenon of global warming to be merely a subject of scientific research or an abstract notion in the minds of the general public. For a number of years we have been witnessing serious climate changes caused by this phenomenon, which have adversely influenced the lives of an increasing number of inhabitants. Almost daily reports on worrisome climate occurrences from different parts of world have silenced even the greatest of skeptics on the connection of human activities and climate disruption. It seems that the global level of awareness has finally reached critical level - it is high time to pass a global agreement strengthened by detailed measures that are legally binding for all the countries.
On February 14, 2016, the seventh day of the Chinese New Year and also the Valentine’s Day, Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Centre Malaysia held a Remembering the Master’s Kindness event in memorial of Master Sheng Yen, founder of DDM, who passed away seven years ago, for his inheriting the Dharma lineage and inspiring many practitioners worldwide.
Dharma Drum Mountain Association of Dharma Supporters Thailand held the Chinese New Year Plenary Dharma Assembly from 10 to 12 a.m. on February 8, the first day of Chinese New Year, to pray for peace and prosperity for the coming year. Senior Venerables Guo Xiang, Guo Jie, Chang Wen, and Chang Jie from Dharma Drum Mountain in Taiwan travelled to Thailand to preside over the Buddhist service, giving Dharma talks to and blessing local devotees and followers.
On February 8, 2016, Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Centre Malaysia held a plenary Dharma meeting to mark the first day of the Chinese New Year. Over a hundred people participated in the ceremony, in which they prostrated to the Buddha and practiced repentance in sincerity and reverence, to celebrate the start of a new year with gratefulness and joy.
In June 2015, the Hemera Foundation invited DDRC to apply for a fellowship grant that provides funding for educators to attend retreats at DDRC. In August 2015, DDRC received the grant and joined retreat centers such as Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Zen Mountain Monastery, Spirit Rock Meditation Center, Blazing Mountain Retreat Center and Garrison Institute, in offering retreat scholarship support to people working full-time in pre-K or K-12 education or enrolled in a Master’s degree program in education. DDRC is pleased to support the vision of expanding the community of educators who use the practice to inform their teaching and lives. In the fall of 2015, DDRC received a second grant from Hemera Foundation to provide retreat scholarship for health care workers. Given the demanding nature of working in the health care fields, the opportunity to deepen their practice in a retreat setting will be invaluable to health care professional. DDRC looks forward to having more health care workers and educators joining its retreats.
Hemera Foundation--link to http://www.hemera.org/for-educators/
Dharma Drum is represented (by Rebecca Li) on the cover of Lion’s Roar
, one of the major Buddhist magazines in the English-speaking world (previously known as Shambhala Sun). In this premiere issue of Lion’s Roar, the editor invited Rebecca Li along with thirteen Dharma teachers from various Buddhist traditions (Kate Johnson, Norman Fischer, Sharon Salzberg, Anam Thubten, Reverend angel Kyodo williams, Roshi Pat Enkyo O’Hara, Lama Rod Owens, Sylvia Boorstein, Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Gina Sharpe, Ethan Nichtern, Larry Yang and Josh Korda) to be in the tri-fold cover photo. These teachers also contributed to the issue’s feature article “Hear the Lions Roar” by responding to the question: What is the most important truth to proclaim in today’s troubled world? Rebecca Li from Dharma Drum represents the Chan tradition
in this piece. Also recently, Dharma Drum appeared in the winter issue of Buddhadharma
magazine which featured the Generation X Dharma Teachers Conference hosted by Dharma Drum Retreat Center in June 2015. Dharma Drum was also featured on Tricycle.com
through an online retreat led by Rebecca Li over the month of October 2015. The online retreat was titled “Living the Platform Sutra.”
【 A Tale of Two Futures - Planetary Realism in the Time of Climate Change 】 By Tim Dai
Venerable Chang Ji just delivered an amazing talk at Dharma Drum Vancouver Center, and the talk was closely related to each one of us. It’s on Global Climate Change of our common home - earth. As you may already know, in December 2015 there was an important international conference took place in Pairs regarding Climate Change – COP21. Venerable Chang Ji, representing DDMBA US, attended the full conference which lasted for almost 12 days, and we were very lucky to have her sharing with us what she learned. Unfortunately, some people weren’t able to attend her talk. Therefore, here is my report on her talk and hopefully it can give you a little taste of her talk and this important topic.