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Outdoor Meditation Event in Bandaraya Ipoh

On May 29, 2016, Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Centre Malaysia held an outdoor meditation event in Bandaraya Ipoh. It was later changed into an indoor meditation practice due to a sudden rain. By embracing the mindset that all arrangements are the best arrangements, volunteers accepted the situation happily, reflecting the Buddhist idea of adapting to the causes and conditions at any present moment.

Ven. Yan Xiang (演祥), monastic advisor of Dharma Drum Young Buddhists Society, invited five young Buddhists from Kuala Lumpur to help with this event, which saw a participation of over 20 people, including an 85 year old senior and a 16 year old young student.

Participants followed the venerable’s instructions and mindfully experienced the Eight-form Moving Meditation, walking meditation, slow walking, picking-up-beans-with-chopsticks meditation, sitting meditation, eating meditation, and the great rest. For the Eight-form Moving Meditation, the venerable explained in detail about the essentials of Chan practice—put your mind wherever your body is and relax your whole body while remaining aware of the sensation of relaxation. She invited participants to feel the changes in their movements and be clearly aware of the relaxed sensation. When doing the walking meditation, the venerable reminded participants to concentrate and focus on the present, and practice completing every task with minimum effort.

Before starting the lunch, participants were given raisins as a starter to the eating meditation practice. The venerable asked them to begin by eating the first raisin in the usual way, and then continue with the second one by noticing its shape and smell before mindfully chewing it for 50 times, appreciating its unique taste. She reminded participants to eat their lunch by applying the methods of practice, as well as using a joyful mind, attentive mind, grateful mind, and equal mind. Eating in meditation, all participants praised the delicious meal with gratitude for the causes and conditions that allowed them to practice attentive eating.

During the sharing session, many participants expressed that they were most impressed by the Eight-form Moving Meditation, a way to practice Chan while in motion that is beneficial to the body and mind and allows them to relax at all times in daily life. Although the rain disrupted the original plan, they had nonetheless benefited from the method of Chan practice for relaxing the body and mind. Especially, some of the senior participants are nearly 80 years old, but still stayed through the whole event and sat in the full lotus position. Their spirit of learning is indeed worthy of our admiration.

Towards the end, the venerable gave her blessings to everyone, and encouraged them to use the methods of Chan practice in daily life—when walking, standing, sitting, and lying down—and keep the essentials of Chan practice in mind.

Reported by Fan Kaiying(范凱瑩)
Photography by Ye Zien(葉紫恩)
Translated by Frances Liu (劉珮如)
Edited by Chiacheng Chang (張家誠)

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