Original from Ven. Ru Xuan
Translated by Winson Yang, Benson Kwek
To commemorate the 54th Anniversary of Fo Guang Shan, Fo Guang Shan Northern California branch temples took part in the global sutra transcription on May 16th and transcribed the Heart Sutra together. Due to the COVID-19 epidemic, devotees transcribed the sutra from their own homes. To include the locals, children, and the elders in the event as a family, the English version and children’s puzzle version of the Heart Sutra were designed in addition to the Chinese Heart Sutra. Additionally, a table card was designed for each participant to celebrate the anniversary.
When devotees received the Heart Sutra and personal table card from the temple, they expressed their gratitude. Although everyone practiced at home, they were as dignified as if they were at the temple. They were also moved that many Buddha’s Light members around the world were also practicing at the same time, and experienced the joy of “I Am Among the Multitude; Among the Multitude There I Am” spoken by Venerable Master Hsing Yun. To be able to participate in Fo Guang Shan’s 54th Anniversary Sutra Transcription, everyone was thankful for Venerable Master Hsing Yun’s compassion and aspirations to establish Humanistic Buddhist branch temples all over the world so that we can find refuge in our faith.
Among the participants were Deputy Manager of Taipei Economic and Trade Office in San Francisco Yingxing Li and his family. President of BLIA SF Chapter, Katy Hsu thanked Fo Guang Shan for giving Buddha’s Light members in North America the opportunity to transcribe the sutra simultaneously. In addition to traditional sutra transcription on paper, Fo Guang Shan also provided online sutra transcription methods so that the public can also participate in this extraordinary activity together on their phones or tablets.
Devotee Stanley Chung joyfully brought along his children and participated in the event. Meiren Shan, a devotee from Fremont temple expressed her gratitude towards Venerable Master Hsing Yun’s compassion and also towards the temple for taking the anniversary as an opportunity to allow everyone to transcribe the sutra globally with other Buddha’s Light members, thus allowing her to learn Buddhism and change her life. Cindy Wang from The Light of Buddha Temple expressed her delight and gratitude as a Buddha’s Light member, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. During the sutra transcription, she was touched by Venerable Master’s influence on Humanistic Buddhism worldwide and aspired to inherit Venerable Master’s compassion and aspirations to promote Humanistic Buddhism.
Venerable Ru Yang, Abbess of Northern California, expressed gratitude towards the temple to allow everyone to have such an opportunity with all
Buddha’s Light members from around the world to transcribe the sutra together. Despite transcribing the sutra from their homes due to the pandemic, it also necessary to transcribe the sutra with a respectful “heart” and devote our bodies and minds to transcribing.
For this year’s event, nearly 530 devotees and members from Fo Guan Shan San Bao Temple, Fremont Temple, The Light of Buddha Temple, and Budhi Temple ranged from age 3 to 99 participated in the commemorative event. Through sutra transcription, it is hoped that participants can settle down spiritually, purify our minds, and beautify the society. Looking forward, through the dedication of merits, everyone hoped that the pandemic situation will improve, and believe that compassions and determination will make the world a better place.