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Last updateWed, 11 Nov 2015 11am

Sunday, 10 May 2015 11:04

Melaka Buddha Bathing Ceremony – Pray for World Peace

Written by  Loh Siew Chien, Yen Yu Chu & Loo Chia Chia, Melaka / Translated by Hew Kwee Heong

Some 4,800 people came for the Buddha Bathing Ceremony held at Melaka International Trade Centre. [Photograph by Chin Fook Kuen]

Nepal was hit by a massive earthquake on April 25, 2015. Every attendee who participated in the Buddha Bathing Ceremony this year had sincerely hoped that their earnest prayers would bring more blessings to Nepal.


 
Tzu Chi Melaka’s 2015 Buddha Bathing Ceremony was held at Melaka International Trade Centre on May 10, 2015. It was attended by 4,800 people, including Tzu Chi volunteers, students, companies’ employees and public members. 
 
Each year on the second Sunday of May, Tzu Chi Chapters all over the world will hold a dignified Buddha Bathing Ceremony to celebrate the Buddha’s birthday (in remembrance of Buddha’s kindness), Mother’s Day (in remembrance of mother’s kindness) and Tzu Chi’s Day (in remembrance of sentient beings’ kindness). 
 
Since the beginning of 2015, many natural and man-made disasters had struck the world. Recently, a massive earthquake hit Nepal and caused great devastation to the country and its people. The Buddha Bathing Ceremony has given everyone an opportunity to give their blessings to the unfortunate people. 
 
The seven Dharma Masters, who led the 4,800 people present at the Ceremony, praised the grace of the Buddha and prayed for peace in the world. 
 
Prayer comforted sorrowful souls
 
To comfort the sorrowful hearts of the 200 Nepalese workers from three factories, a prayer session led by Dharma Masters was specially arranged for them after the Buddha Bathing Ceremony. 
 
One hundred and twenty-two Nepalese staff from Fetta Auto Part Industries (M) Sdn Bhd participated in the 1-hour ceremony with a sincere heart, although they could not understand the speech spoken in Mandarin.
 
The company’s Accounting Manager, Tan Poh Hong, who is a Tzu Chi volunteer, disclosed that more than 20 of her Nepalese staff were affected by this earthquake, with two losing their loved ones. Poh Hong said when these staff learnt of the disaster, they panicked and did not know what to do. Poh Hong and colleagues helped them to get more news about their homeland and held fundraising in the factory to collect money for the affected families. 
 
Realizing that what she had done for them was not enough to comfort their sorrowful hearts, she invited them to the Buddha Bathing Ceremony, hoping that through the solemn ceremony they could find some peace. Besides her own staff, she also invited her neighbouring factories’ workers to the ceremony. 
 
Poh Hong said, “I hope the prayers will calm their minds and make them feel that they are not alone. They have our support.”
 
Blessings from Malaysia
 
Tzu Chi volunteers took the opportunity to solicit relief funds for the Nepalese earthquake victims. Nepalese Raju Tamang donated RM10, which was all that he could spare at that moment.
 
His house in Nepal was damaged, and his mother and sister were still missing. He was very sad but could do nothing.
 
He prayed earnestly to the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas for his family members to be found soon. He did find a little solace seeing so many people praying for his country.
 
Bishnu, who has been in Malaysia for more than ten years, disclosed that his hometown was affected by the earthquake. His house was badly damaged but fortunately his family members were safe.
 
Bishnu said, “We are poor people. This disaster made us poorer!” He felt a little relieved upon seeing so many countries rushing to help Nepal.
 
“What I can do here is to earn more money for my family and pray hard that there will be no more such disasters in the world.” 
 
From hopeless to hopeful
 
Twenty-nine-year-old Nandakisor came to work in Malaysia six months ago. Three months upon arrival, he fell ill and was diagnosed with Hyperthyroidism and Ankylosing Spondylitis. Despite being weak, he attended this event with a walking aid, accompanied by his colleagues.
 
When he was planning to return home to Nepal, the earthquake struck. Although his three children and wife were safe, his house was destroyed. All these happenings had made Nandakisor very sad.
 
Although he was very tired physically and mentally, he insisted on participating in the 2-hour ceremony. Initially, he was sitting on a chair, but when other participants were performing the walking meditation, he decided to join in. After the walking meditation, he continued to stand upright to sing the prayer song; and with sincerity, he made three wishes - for him to regain his health, for the safety of his family and for his country to recover soon.
 
After the ceremony, one could see that there was a trace of smile and confidence on Nandakisor’s face. His colleague, Prem Bahador Roka Magor said he also felt the change in him. 
 
Loving-kindness from all walks of life
 
Lee Kang Ling came to the Buddha Bathing Ceremony with 500 commemorative coins (5-cent and 20-cent coins in gold colour) framed in a beautiful box.
 
He donated the commemorative coins to Tzu Chi and requested that the coins be given out to people donated to Nepal as a souvenir. This was his way of doing something for the victims. 
 
Collecting commemorative coins is his hobby. When asked why he was willing to donate his collections, he said, “The more you give, the more you get. Your organization has done a lot for the flood victims in Kelantan and now the earthquake victims in Nepal.” 
 
Kang Ling was not familiar with Tzu Chi until he read the news about the relief aid in the newspaper. The news had inspired him to take this action.
 
Lim Lay Ting, who came with her family said, “I have attended this annual Buddha Bathing Ceremony for many years now. Every time, I prayed earnestly for world peace.” The recent Nepal earthquake had reminded her to cherish her blessing for being in Malaysia.
 
Lay Ting and family brought back a coin box to donate. Her son said, “We hope this money will be used to help the needy people in the world.” Lay Ting also informed, “I made a wish each time I put some money into the coin box.”
 
 
Master Hui Shen, Abbot of Melaka Kadhampa Buddhist Association, who had attended this event last year, was impressed with the ceremony. He said, “Shakyamuni Buddha taught us to love all sentient beings and to help them find happiness.” He also added that the reason the world was hit by so many disasters is because man’s greed, hatred and ignorance are so great. He said “LOVE” is the remedy. 
 
Master Fa Liang from Thekchen Choling Melaka attended this event for the first time. She was very impressed to see that the attendees seemed to know when to move automatically. After leading a special prayer ceremony for the Nepalese workers, Master Fa Liang, who used to visit Nepal frequently said, “We can’t go there to help, but we can pray for them. This action should relieve some of their anxieties, as well as, enable them to find some consolation.”
 
 

 
Lim Lay Ting and family came to the Buddha Bathing Ceremony with their coin bank to donate this year. Picture shows them picking up a Jing Si Aphorism poster. [Photograph by Alex Tan Ah Lek]   Seven Dharma Masters led the Buddha Bathing Ceremony held by Tzu Chi Melaka at Melaka International Trade Centre. [Photograph by Chin Fook Kuen]

Lim Lay Ting and family came to the Buddha Bathing Ceremony with their coin bank to donate this year. Picture shows them picking up a Jing Si Aphorism poster. [Photograph by Alex Tan Ah Lek]
 
Seven Dharma Masters led the Buddha Bathing Ceremony held by Tzu Chi Melaka at Melaka International Trade Centre. [Photograph by Chin Fook Kuen]
 
Lee Kang Ling (right) brought 500 commemorative coins to the ceremony and offered them as souvenirs to donors of the Nepalese relief fund. [Photograph by Chin Fook Kuen]   Nepalese workers of Fetta Auto Part Industries (M) Sdn Bhd participated in the Buddha Bathing Ceremony. [Photograph by Kam How Chan]

Lee Kang Ling (right) brought 500 commemorative coins to the ceremony and offered them as souvenirs to donors of the Nepalese relief fund. [Photograph by Chin Fook Kuen]
 
 
Nepalese workers of Fetta Auto Part Industries (M) Sdn Bhd participated in the Buddha Bathing Ceremony. [Photograph by Kam How Chan]
 
Raju Tamang hoped his missing family members will be found soon. [Photograph by Heng Ching Chuan]   Prem Bahador Roka Magor, who suffers from Hyperthyroidism and Ankylosing Spondylitis, performed the walking meditation with a walking aid. [Photograph by Lee Kin Chee]

Raju Tamang hoped his missing family members will be found soon. [Photograph by Heng Ching Chuan]
 
 
Prem Bahador Roka Magor, who suffers from Hyperthyroidism and Ankylosing Spondylitis, performed the walking meditation with a walking aid. [Photograph by Lee Kin Chee]
 
A special prayer ceremony was held for the Nepalese workers after the Buddha Bathing Ceremony. It is hoped that this will bring relief and comfort to these Nepalese whose homeland was hit by earthquakes. [Photograph by Lee Kin Chee]    

A special prayer ceremony was held for the Nepalese workers after the Buddha Bathing Ceremony. It is hoped that this will bring relief and comfort to these Nepalese whose homeland was hit by earthquakes. [Photograph by Lee Kin Chee]