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YEAR OF NEWS :
Dharma Drum Mountain declared the Mother’s Day, which is designated as the Bathing-the-Buddha Festival in Taiwan, as the Action Day to encourage the practice of protecting the spiritual environment and showing gratitude. At 8 a.m. on May 14, at the MRT Zhongxiao-Fuxing and Xiangshan stations, people and volunteers joined together and kicked off their “urban walking meditation.” Participants had a fun day experiencing moments of stillness in the “Protecting the Spiritual Environment: Stop, Relax, and Enjoy” event, by fine-tuning their inner spiritual clocks through Chan practice.
To perform the ritual, practitioners first bow to the Buddha and then scoop the scented water and pour it over the statue of infant Prince Siddhartha, and repeat the same process for two more times. Meanwhile, participants chant Shakyamuni Buddha’s name and the Bathing-the-Buddha Gatha, to wish all beings to leave behind afflictive defilements, and soon realize the pure Dharma-body of the Tathagata.
Bathing the Buddha has a profound meaning.

While pouring fragrant water over the statue of Prince Siddhartha, we must sincerely pray: “I now bathe all Tathagatas, pure wisdom as adornment and with the accumulation of merit and virtue. May sentient beings in the world of Five Turbidities leave behind defilements and soon realize the pure Dharma-body of the Tathagata.”

Through the merit of bathing the Buddha, we should aspire to purify our bodily, verbal, and mental actions by eliminating our greed, hatred, and delusion. This is the real meaning of bathing the Buddha.

The birth of Buddha into the world brought spiritual serenity and a path to liberation for confused and lost sentient beings. Therefore we hold the Bathing the Buddha Dharma Assembly to celebrate the Buddha’s birthday, showing our gratitude to his kindness.
As a way to show gratitude and repay kindness, the seven-day Amitabha Recitation Retreat is a popular event for many practitioners during the Tomb-Sweeping Festival. Of various Buddhist methods of practice, reciting Amitabha Buddha’s name is a most straightforward and effective way to help us gather our mind and live in the present. By reciting Amitabha Buddha’s name in one-minded concentration without confusion and distraction, we will be more able to calm and settle our mind.
The Concept of Repaying Kindness: To Benefit All Sentient Beings through Actual Practice

Purifying our minds and society through diligent practice of the Dharma at the Dharma assembly:
In Chinese culture, the Tomb-Sweeping Festival is a time to pay respects to one’s ancestors, by remembering their kindness and the value of filial piety.
I attended the Dharma Drum Vancouver New Year Young People Event with the hopes of starting 2018 off on a positive start, and get a chance to meet new people who have similar interests in Buddhism, meditation and spreading compassion in the world.
It was my pleasure to join the event held by DDYP (Dharma Drum for Young People) at Chan Meditation Center for the Buddha Nature in Food- Part II. DDYP invited an experienced nutritionist, Iraina, to share her professional knowledge about helping those people with nutrition and health issues.
The summer of 2017 has become the most memorable summer of my life thanks to the one-month visit to the Dharma Drum Vancouver Center (DDVC). I’ve been living on the DILA campus for the past two years and I thought that I really understood what sangha life really is. It had never occurred to me how hard it could be for a foreign religion like Buddhism to survive or struggle to prosper in a foreign context, even though I knew that it was even more difficult in ancient times when most people were conservative or illiterate and resisted things alien to what they already knew.
As part of this year’s high school summer camp (生命美學研習營), I gave a talk entitled “A Westerner’s Perspective on Eastern Religious Traditions and Education” (歐美人士眼中的東方宗教傳統與教育). In order to give the audience some insight into my own personal background, I decided to dedicate the first segment of the talk to introducing the young Taiwanese high school students to some key facts about the religious landscape of modern Western countries.
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