Report of Guo Cheh fashi's dharma spreading event, 6/10/2009 to 6/30/2009
Guo Cheh fashi's summer dharma spreading tour started in San Francisco Chapter (DDMBASF). The chapter hosted series classes of "Chinese Chan Buddhism - the Dharma Drum School" and one-day huatou meditation.
In the series classes, there were at least 40 people attended the classes each time. Before the class started, fashi led everybody to relax their bodies and mind so that the mind would be calmer and focus on the class materials afterwards.
The class materials contained two parts: the Chinese Chan Buddhism - the Dharma Drum School book and the detailed supplement material of silent-illumination and huatou chan.
Since Guo Xin fashi, the abbot of Dharma Drum Retreat Center and Chan Meditation Center of the New York, had introduced the silent-illumination method in DDMBASF's three-day meditation event in April, Guo Cheh fashi briefly discussed the silent-illumination method and focused majorly on the discussion of the huatou method.
Due to the same reason, the method fashi hoped everybody to use in the one-day meditation practice was the huatou method. There were about 40 people attend the one-day meditation. This is the first time that DDMBASF hosted the one-day huatou meditation, which meant a lot to DDMBASF!
After each class, many people asked questions and fashi answered the question in details or left for the next time to share with every one. Some people brought the questions they had when reading Buddhism books.
Even though those questions might not be related to the class, fashi still answered with patience and in detail. In the one-day meditation, all attendants were divided into five groups and shared their experience within groups after the practice. One person was chosen from the group members to share with everybody what the group discussed.
For most attendants, this was the first time they practiced the huatou methods, so some of them could not appropriately use this method or applied the method into the wrong way; however, there still were some people experienced the feeling of huatou chan. The whole sharing period was relaxed and full of laughing.
Fashi answered all the questions and encouraged everybody to participate the meditation practices hosted by DDMBASF, including regular, one-day, and three-day meditation practice. After accumulating enough experiences, the attendants could participate the advanced huatou meditation hosted by Dharma Drum Retreat Center in New York.
During the stay in DDMBASF, fashi visited several famous spots in the San Francisco bay area, including the Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman's Warf, Mur Woods National Monument, and Shoreline wet land park. Guo Cheh fashi comes to DDMBASF once a year.
Through going out with fashi, volunteers of DDMBASF could know fashi more and experience the wisdom and compassion from fashi. The volunteers all hope that fashi could visit DDMBASF more often and stay longer so that the volunteers, as well as the bay-area people, could learn more from fashi.
(contributed by DDMBASF)