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Master's Teaching
Monday, 24 June 2013 00:00

Developing a Heart of Equality

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Tzu Chi holds a winter distribution in Gauteng, South Africa.  Tzu Chi volunteer greets every recipient with gratitude. (Photo by Wen Zhi-zhong; date: 2012/07/28; location: Gauteng, South Africa)

[Master's Teachings]

With Tzu Chi volunteers in over 50 countries, when disasters happen locally, volunteers nearby will mobilize to bring aid and comfort to people in need. It was through such disaster relief distributions by Tzu Chi volunteers that a local government official came to know more about Tzu Chi. Wanting to learn more, this official came to Taiwan and visited the foundation’s headquarters in Hualien. Touched and inspired by the spirit of selfless love that he witnessed in Tzu Chi volunteers and in the work they do, and though neither Asian nor Buddhist, this official expressed to Dharma Master Cheng Yen his wish to become her disciple. Accepting him, the Master took time to explain the following concepts to him so that as a disciple, he would have the right view toward religion and walk on the right path when he returned to his country:

Saturday, 25 May 2013 00:00

Cultivation in Everyday Life

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Jing Si Abode. (Photo by Hsiao Chia-ming)

[Master's Teachings]

With the completion of the construction on the Main Hall at the Jing Si Abode, allowing the Abode to accommodate larger numbers of Tzu Chi volunteers, many programs have been organized for volunteers to return to their spiritual home. One of these programs is a one-week spiritual retreat for a small group of volunteers, who return to work alongside the monastics of the Abode to experience the life of cultivation and gain deeper insights into the spiritual principles of the Jing Si Dharma Lineage.

Friday, 19 April 2013 00:00

Seizing Upon the Seed of a Good Thought

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In the early years, Master Cheng Yen led commissioners and medical personnels to visit needy people in their homes. Photo: Dr. Huang Bo-shih seeing a care recipients. (Photo provided by Tzu Chi Foundation; date: 1972/11/12 ~ 1972/11/13; location: Hualien County, Taiwan)

[Master's Teachings]

In a conversation with Dharma Master Cheng Yen, a renowned writer in Taiwan remarked that he found her to have novel and refreshingly different approaches in every field of work she gets involved in, bringing new concepts to the field. Raising the medical field as an example, he asked her if she could talk about what her vision for a better kind of medical care was.

Tzu Chi's kindergarten children were taught to give love to the less fortunate since young. [Photograph by Lim Shy Tean]

[Master's Teachings]

Editor's Introduction: People who live in poverty not only suffer the physical hardships of going without basic life necessities, but can also experience a sense of despair, feeling that there is nothing they can do to improve their lot. When they understand the Law of Karma, they know that to beget good fortune, they need to plant the seeds by doing good and creating good karma. But, how do they do this when they are so poor that they have nothing? In the following, Dharma Master Cheng Yen tells a story about a man who came to the Buddha with this very dilemma.

【Photo by Kee Boon Soo】

In November 2012, volunteers returning to Taiwan for training and certification met with Dharma Master Cheng Yen. The newly certified Tzu Chi volunteers shared their thoughts with Master and then made vows to work for the good of humanity and to inspire more people to join them in this cause.

【Photo by Khor Siew Ai】

As an ordinary person, we give rise to all sorts of thoughts in our mind. They enter and exit our mind constantly. When we give rise to a kind thought, we may act on it and do a good deed to help others. When we give rise to an unwholesome thought, such as an angry one, we may say something mean to others. Our actions are greatly influenced by our thoughts.

【Photo by Lee Kok Keong】

When a renowned Taiwanese writer and staff of a leading newspaper in Taiwan visited Dharma Master Cheng Yen, the newspaper's Deputy Editor-in-Chief commented that Tzu Chi's international relief work has helped Taiwan become more visible in the international community.  Given this, he was interested in Tzu Chi's international relief capacity, and asked the Master how she analyzes, prioritizes, and decides which disasters to get involved in.  How does she manage such a large number of volunteers worldwide, and mobilize them to make  Tzu Chi as effective as it is in international aid work?

【Photo by Cheong Huey Chiat】

In his lifetime, the Buddha met many different kinds of people. Some were kings and ministers of court, others were people who lived in abject poverty, yet others were prominent and influential people of society. In fact, the Buddha interacted with people from all walks of life. Depending on the people he encountered, he would offer the teaching most suited to their condition in life. But no matter who he spoke to, his purpose in giving teachings was always the same—to help people awaken from delusion so they may aspire to learn the Dharma, realize the true nature of life, and begin walking the path of enlightenment.

【Photo by Kee Boon Soo】

Practicing the Bodhisattva way, one of the most important qualities we need to nurture is patient endurance – the capacity to bear with unpleasant and trying circumstances. Patient endurance gives us the power to rise above difficult situations and overcome our inner afflictions rather than be overcome by them.

【Photo by Lee Kok Keong】

"As inhabitants of the earth, we are nourished and sustained by Mother Earth who provides us our food and all the resources for life.  If she is healthy and well, we will be healthy and well.  Our fates are intertwined." —Dharma Master Cheng Yen

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