DDM Hosts 2013 DDM Youth Camp for Cultivating Excellence
Dharma Drum Mountain’s 2013 DDM Youth Camp for Cultivating Excellence concluded on 19 July. Although the camp was postponed for one day due to Typhoon Soulik, over 100 students attended to reap the benefits of Chan meditation under the guidance of the Venerables. They were deeply moved by the Dharma teachings and found happiness from within.
Team leader Zhi-Wen Guo specially returned from South California, U.S.A., to participate in the Chan camp for the third time. When asked by her friends why she was attending again even though she had already been twice before, she answered that her responsibilities this time were significantly different because she was undertaking a leader’s role. Not only did she assist first-time participants, she also learned the principles and morals of life from different Venerables and other volunteers. Although she occasionally felt physically tired during the process, she is happy and wishes to share this happiness with every other student.
Wei-Wei Li, an exchange student from Beijing did not have any religious beliefs before visiting DDM. During her first visit to DDM, she was touched by the Venerables’ compassion and kindness, the volunteers’ professionalism and DDM founder the late Master Sheng Yen’s vision, “Uplift the character of humanity, and build a pure land on earth.” Inspired, she specially enlisted in the DDM Youth Camp for Cultivating Excellence. After a few days of activities her mind gradually stabilized and strengthened, and Wei-Wei came to understand herself better. Her experiences helped her academic studies and opened her heart to the beautiful scenery surrounding her. Wei-Wei recommends even non-Buddhists to visit DDM and experience Chan meditation to uplift the character of life.
Another participant, Yi-Chi Dong said that she was prone to anxiety, nervousness, panics, and depression. In the hopes of transforming her mental anxiety through meditation, her mother assisted her enrolment in the DDM Youth Camp for Cultivating Excellence Chan Camp for Outstanding Youths. Although she was extremely frustrated and felt depressed on the second day of the camp, a Venerable stayed with her to comfort her, explain to her the meaning of life and provide a method to handle her fluctuating emotions.
The Venerable compared life to a brook filled of pebbles, but even so they never stop the flow of water. Similarly, you may feel upset when you fail a test, but you would probably feel alright tomorrow. No matter what problems we may face, we will find ways to overcome them even though we will repeatedly put in great effort to the point where our confidence is shaken throughout the process. The Venerable explained to Yi-Chi that she can depart from her unhappy situation. Yi-Chi learned to encourage herself through Master Sheng Yen’s teachings, “Face it, Accept it, Deal with it, Let it go.” Surprised by her own positive changes, Yi-Chi encourages everyone to participate in Chan meditation.
(Translated by Tom Hsieh/Edited by DDM Australia Editing Team)