DDM Global News

Blessings and Care to Volunteers from Abbot President and the Monastics

All the Dharma Drum Mountain's centers in North America remain closed due to the pandemic. Though everyone is physically separated from one other, this crisis has brought together devotees from three cities in different countries on the internet for the first time. On January 17, 2021, Dharma Drum Mountain's centers in Vancouver, San Francisco, and Los Angeles held the first online Lunar Year End Caring Assembly. Ven. Chang Hui, the moderator, explained that the Caring Assembly represents the monastics' gratitude, care, and blessings to volunteers. It was the first time that the three places in North America have jointly held the event, as well as the first time that the Abbot and monastics in Taiwan have connected to the North American Lunar Year End Caring Assembly in this format. The experience provided opportunities for meaningful interactions with followers, and is sure to leave a deep impression on all attendees.
From DDM's headquarter in New Taipei City, Taiwan, Abbot President Ven. Guo Huei expressed his sincere care to all in attendance, and shared his methods and reflections related toprostration and meditation. "Treating others compassionately, you're at peace at all times. Treating yourself wisely, you're carefree wherever you go," Ven. Guo Huei wished everyone a settled and peaceful mind and good health. He reminded everyone to face the challenge of the pandemic with a focused mind and to follow the Four Steps in Dealing with Any Problem: face it, accept it, deal with it, and let it go. At the same time, he emphasized that a crisis is an opportunity, and urged everyone to actively promote the Four Kinds of Environmentalism, to respect other sentient beings' living environments, and to protect and care about the natural environment.   
The directors of the three centers also offered their blessings. Ven. Chang Wu of Vancouver Center urged the devotees to find their own methods to calm themselves in the face of challenges and anxieties. She reminded everyone that, rather than focusing too much on one's own feelings, it is better to care more about others. Ven. Chang Xin of San Francisco Bay Area Center reminded those present to feel grateful toward both prosperity and adversities and to practice Chan meditation with Buddhist concepts and methods. In this way, peace and ease are surely attainable . Ven. Chang Yue of Los Angeles Center encouraged all to find a method to settle their minds so that they will be peaceful at all times and carefree wherever they go.
 The Lunar Year End Caring Assembly concluded with numerous blessings. The three centers will introduce new online events in the coming months. Vancouver and San Francisco Bay Area Center will hold online retreats and group practice sessions in February and March. In addition to regular group practice sessions, the Los Angeles Center will have new events for children and college students. The center volunteers welcome everyone to participate, hoping that participants will find the key to the power of peace, and  stride forward when facing the challenges in the future.
For more information about the online events, please visit  
http://www.ddmba.ca/ddmba/index.php?lang=en (the Vancouver Center),
https://www.ddmbasf.org (the San Francisco Bay Area Center),
http://www.ddmbala.org/ (the Los Angeles Center)
Text: Sarah Lin
Photos: Abbot President's Office
Translation: Hsiao Chen-An
Editing: Min Shi, Greg Aiani, Keith Brown