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Sunday, 14 May 2017 00:00

Honouring Buddha’s Day, Brings Peace to the Heart

Written by  Tzu Chi Documenting Team, KL & Selangor / Translated by Chai Soo Ai

3,250 participants formed this year’s totem design of sun, moon, tiny particles, mountains, rivers and “Jing Si Dharma Lineage” in Chinese characters, representing 2017’s theme and preserving the Dharma Lineage. It also serves as a reminder to volunteers to create blessings and nurture wisdom. [Photograph by Lim Heng Lai]

Master Cheng Yen’s message to Tzu Chi volunteers for 2017 is: “Create blessings: every grain of rice delivers eternal love; nurture wisdom: each tiny particle holds life’s truth.” In conjunction with this year’s theme, a grand magnificent totem was designed to represent the sun, moon, tiny particles, mountains, rivers and Jing Si Dharma Lineage, depicting the 51 years of Tzu Chi Foundation from its humble beginnings. It is also a reminder for everyone to always remember the perseverance and compassion of Tzu Chi.


The second Sunday of May is the day that is celebrated jointly by Tzu Chi volunteers around the world. It is a day spent in prayers and the creation of positive vibes with hope for a better world. With many natural disasters causing suffering to living beings, our only hope is sincere love and prayers of all living beings. We hope that our prayers will be heard up above.

On May 13 and 14, 2017, Buddha’s Day, Mother’s Day and Global Tzu Chi’s Day were celebrated for two consecutive days at KL Tzu-Chi Jing Si Hall. This three-in-one celebration was participated by over 10,000 participants including volunteers. This celebration was held to pay our respect and gratitude to the Triple Gem (Buddha, Dharma and Sangha), where the Buddha showed us the proper path of life. This is stated in the sutras (Dharma); and it is through the Sangha that these valuable teachings are passed down to us. Mother’s Day is celebrated to show our gratitude towards our parents who nurtured and guided us. Global Tzu Chi’s day is to observe the “field of compassion” in Tzu Chi’s effort to elevate the suffering of all living beings while we discover the Noble Truth of “suffering” in each encounter with the people we help. Therefore, we ought to be grateful to them.

A magnificent totem pays homage to Sakyamuni Buddha

Tzu Chi KL & Selangor (formerly Tzu Chi KL) has been established in Malaysia for more than 20 years, and with an increasing number of volunteers and members. As the existing KL Tzu-Chi Jing Si Hall could not accommodate the large number of visitors and volunteers, this year’s Buddha Day’s event was spread over two days.

In the effort to promote the Buddha’s teachings and filial piety, this year’s celebration also included a session for the visitors to transcribe the Sutra of Filial Piety. This is part of the effort to appreciate and show gratitude towards our parents’ kindness.

There are two things in life that cannot wait, fulfilling filial piety and doing kind deeds. Thus, a foot-bathing section, which accommodated 200 pairs of parents and children simultaneously, was also set up. The atmosphere during the foot-bathing session was filled with love, forgiveness and affection. Apart from that, a variety of activities were prepared for the visitors, including educational talks, promotion of the Ethical Eating Day and a vegetarian reception. The visitors could also donate savings in their bamboo banks to support the construction of Tzu Chi International School KL.

Two hundred and thirty-two Lucite Buddha statues and a “Great Enlightened One of the Universe” statue graced the 3-in-1 celebration. These statues were adorned with orchid arrangements to welcome volunteers and public members to the celebration. The solemn Buddha bathing ceremony manifested the beauty and compassion of Buddhism and Tzu Chi.

The soft glow of sunrise, white pillow soft clouds and clear blue skies gave birth to a new day. The sun’s rays gleamed over every blade of grass and shone from each leaf beautifully while the moon was still hanging high up in the sky, like the nature’s subtle portrayal of the 2017’s theme: “Create blessings: every grain of rice delivers eternal love; nurture wisdom: each tiny particle holds life’s truth.”

This year’s magnificent totem was formed by 3,250 participants to represent the sun, moon, tiny particles, mountains, rivers and “Jing Si Dharma Lineage” in Chinese characters. It symbolizes Tzu Chi’s 51st Anniversary this year. During the past half century, Tzu Chi has overcome many obstacles from Taiwan and around the world. It also reminds us on the hardship during its initial establishment, where Master Cheng Yen and volunteers at that time did not have sufficient rice to serve the poor at the monthly relief distribution event. The Master would tell volunteers to add more water to the porridge. At times, the porridge became a light soup, which was so diluted and clear that it reflected the mountains, clouds, the sky and nature.

Thus, every grain of rice is very precious as it represents the love and kindness of many. And if we are heedful, we will be able to see the subtle and wondrous Dharma in every little thing in life, thereby growing in wisdom. Hence, we should always be reminded to be persistent in serving humanity and working for the greater good in order to create blessings for all, and grasp and assimilate the Dharma in our daily lives in order to nurture our wisdom.

A blessed ceremony, a sincere filial piety

Every year, Dharma Masters from the Theravada, Mahayana and Vajrayana Schools of Buddhism were invited to grace the Buddha bathing ceremony. This year, a total of 72 Dharma Masters were present to lead the attendees in expressing gratitude and reverence to the Buddha.

Venerable Ming Ji, the Chairman of Malaysian Buddhist Association (KL & Selangor Branch), has been very supportive towards events organized by Tzu Chi KL & Selangor throughout the years. Venerable Ming Ji expressed his concerns over the turbulence in the present world and emphasized on the importance of educating people about Buddhist teachings, such as, the value of compassion, the actual meaning behind the rituals of Buddha bathing, the eradication of mental afflictions and impurities, and the pursuit of spiritual wisdom. It is hoped that with a sincere and pure heart, uncertainties and unrest in today’s world can be adverted and turned into positive energies.

As for Venerable Kai Guo of Persatuan Kebajikan & Social Kim Loo Ting, this is his first participation in Tzu Chi’s Buddha bathing ceremony. He was impressed by volunteers riding on bicycles and giving directions to his approaching vehicle to stop at a designated parking spot. He felt that this is the true spirit of Dharma disciplines, performing duties with a sincere heart and heedfulness.

Venerable Kai Guo also stated that this three-in-one celebration contents are easily acceptable to the younger generations in order to practise the Dharma in their daily lives. He believes that Tzu Chi will continue to improve its future large-scale activities.

Do kind deeds and fulfil filial piety as part of life

Filial piety is the most fundamental of human values. Malaysian entrepreneur, Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Vincent Tan Chee Yioun seized the opportunity to attend the Buddha bathing ceremony alongside with his mother despite his busy work schedules. He too did not miss the opportunity to join the foot-bathing session together with his mother. He then massaged his mother’s shoulder and arms before bowing down to her feet in gratitude of her sacrifice and love. He stated, “This is my first time in life bathing my mum’s feet. It is in line with the Buddhist teaching that a mother is like a living Buddha at home. I sincerely feel grateful to Master Cheng Yen and Tzu Chi for giving me this opportunity to honour my mother.”

He warmly hugged and placed a warm kiss on his mother’s cheek. The mother was very happy and said, “In my 90 years of life, this is the happiest day of my life. I am very thankful to the teachings of Master Cheng Yen. Thanks to Tzu Chi, my grandchildren are very obedient. My children are filial too.”

A 79-year-old Lim Kim Choo is suffering from osteoporosis and has to rely on a walking aid. Every year, she looks forward to joining the totem formation but due to her condition, she could only watch as she is unable to stand for long. Seated at the viewing zone, she was moved to tears by the solemn ceremony. She said, “Although I am unable to participate in the totem formation, I could sing the prayers sincerely and feel tranquil and serene.”



Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. We are always caught up in our mundane thinking and throw our minds into confusion and chaos which bring suffering and misery. The Buddha devoted his life to share with us the ultimate truth so that we, the unenlightened, can see through our delusions and transcend our affliction and walk the path to Enlightenment. Thus, we should live our life with compassion, love, gratitude and learning the Dharma diligently.

 

Seventy-two Dharma Masters from Theravada, Mahayana and Vajrayana Schools of Buddhism graced this year’s Buddha bathing ceremony by leading all present in praising the Buddha. [Photograph by Lim Chin Tong]   Clear blue skies, soft white clouds and a serene atmosphere blessed the Buddha bathing ceremony, bringing peace and harmony to participants. [Photograph by Lim Su Nguan]

Seventy-two Dharma Masters from Theravada, Mahayana and Vajrayana Schools of Buddhism graced this year’s Buddha bathing ceremony by leading all present in praising the Buddha. [Photograph by Lim Chin Tong]
 
Clear blue skies, soft white clouds and a serene atmosphere blessed the Buddha bathing ceremony, bringing peace and harmony to participants. [Photograph by Lim Su Nguan]
 
Volunteers paid homage to the “Great Enlightened One of the Universe” to mark the start of 2017 Buddha bathing ceremony. [Photograph by Lim Chin Shein]   Participants sincerely prayed for world peace. [Photograph by Lim Su Nguan]

Volunteers paid homage to the “Great Enlightened One of the Universe” to mark the start of 2017 Buddha bathing ceremony. [Photograph by Lim Chin Shein]
 
 
Participants sincerely prayed for world peace. [Photograph by Lim Su Nguan]
 
Venerable Master Ming Ji hoped that with a sincere and pure heart, uncertainties and unrest in today’s world can be adverted and turned into positive energies. [Photograph by Ch’ng Kooi Tick]   Venerable Kai Guo stated that the 3-in-1 celebration contents are easily acceptable to the younger generations to practise the Dharma in daily lives. [Photograph by Ch’ng Kooi Tick]

Venerable Master Ming Ji hoped that with a sincere and pure heart, uncertainties and unrest in today’s world can be adverted and turned into positive energies. [Photograph by Ch’ng Kooi Tick]
 
 
Venerable Kai Guo stated that the 3-in-1 celebration contents are easily acceptable to the younger generations to practise the Dharma in daily lives. [Photograph by Ch’ng Kooi Tick]
 
Malaysian entrepreneur, Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Vincent Tan Chee Yioun seized the opportunity to attend the Buddha bathing ceremony alongside with his mother despite his busy work schedules. [Photograph by Lai Jih Chuan]   Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Vincent Tan warmly hugged and placed a warm kiss on his mother’s cheek. The mother was very happy and said, “In my 90 years of life, this is the happiest day.” [Photograph by Beh Chun How]

Malaysian entrepreneur, Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Vincent Tan Chee Yioun seized the opportunity to attend the Buddha bathing ceremony alongside with his mother despite his busy work schedules. [Photograph by Lai Jih Chuan]
 
 
Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Vincent Tan warmly hugged and placed a warm kiss on his mother’s cheek. The mother was very happy and said, “In my 90 years of life, this is the happiest day.” [Photograph by Beh Chun How]