On November 23rd and 24th, 2019, we held a Grand Tsok Offering of Guan Yin (Avalokiteshvara) and the consecration ceremony for the statues of Ksitigarbha and Maitreya. Surely, many of you had a fulfilling experience with these two events.
Together, we recited the Great Compassion Mantra (Long Dharani) in the Grand Tsok Offering. The mantra helps to uncover our innate wisdom. As a result, we’d receive a compassionate blessing from Guan Yin. Our lives would be endowed with favorable conditions and be averted from obstacles. One of the purposes of the puja is to join everyone together so to immerse themselves in the teaching of the Buddha.
The teaching of the Buddha offers us the right view, the understanding of karma, the engagement in virtues, and the caring love for others. Most importantly, teaching allows us to reconnect with our Buddha nature or primordial awareness. The primordial awareness is the primary determinant in accomplishing Buddhahood. Yet, we must “live to serve, dedicate life to lives” in our many lifetimes. “To serve” and “to dedicate” are Dharmic activities that inspire wisdom and eradicate afflictions. Then we’d be serving and dedicating with wholeheartedly without regrets.
To have the wisdom is to acquire the omniscience like the Buddha. It is to realize the impermanence and suffering of all phenomena. Dharma practice is to utilize this compounded body to accumulate merits and engage in virtues. We can realize our spirituality and primordial awareness through this body. That awareness is the home of unchanging. We should follow the Buddha to learn the “right things”. What’s “right”? It is not to be attached to any phenomena. As we break free from the chain of phenomena, our primordial awareness is uncovered fully to be at ease. No more burdens are imposed.
As of the two Bodhisattva statues at the consecration ceremony, they represent significances respectively. Guan Yin symbolizes the Four Immeasurable (loving-kindness, compassion, joy, and equanimity). She is also the mahabodhisattva who comes to rescue 24/7. Ksitigarbha aspires to never attain Buddhahood should hell remains occupied. He is also a mahabodhisattva who safeguards the Earth. We must emulate the spirit of putting sentient beings first like these Bodhisattvas. That way, we are connected in life with one another. Our memory drives would merge like numerous streams into one. Allow us to connect positively. That way, our future would be endowed with great felicity.
Dharma practice is the compass of happiness in life. As we are gathered in this shrine hall, we are here to serve and dedicate. This is a place of learning. We listen and discuss Buddhadharma. Confrontational relationships are pacified. We’d be the field of merit for one another to cultivate merits and wisdom.
I hope that all of you could open up the wisdom of primordial awareness. To serve and to dedicate. May you accumulate merit and cultivate wisdom swiftly. Be aspired to attain Buddhahood to liberate sentient beings. Let us rediscover the nature that is unarising and unceasing.