Stories of Ven. Master Xuecheng: Preface from the author

From:Voice of Longquan     Author:Shi Huikong     Time:2015-03-11 15:37:26
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Thus is the Honorable Buddha: His wisdom is as vast as the whole space, knowing all without omission; his compassion and loving-kindness encompass all living beings, without any exception; his teachings on the wondrous Dharma extend through endless kalpas; his clear mind is free from illusions and reaching beyond language limits; his benevolence is demonstrated by examples of his embodiments; his sublime virtue is manifested in his awakening to the True Suchness.

Thus is the Honorable Buddha: His wisdom is as vast as the whole space, knowing all without omission; his compassion and loving-kindness encompass all living beings, without any exception; his teachings on the wondrous Dharma extend through endless kalpas; his clear mind is free from illusions and reaching beyond language limits; his benevolence is demonstrated by examples of his embodiments; his sublime virtue is manifested in his awakening to the True Suchness.

The rise of the Great Way depends on development of a nation. Firstly introduced in the Han Dynasty, Chinese Buddhism experienced golden days in the Tang and the Song, was perpetuated in the Ming and the Qing, and declined in the early modern period. It is now on the path toward restoration revealing signs of prosperity. Nonetheless, the Eight Sects of Dharmata, Dharmalaksana, Tiantai, Avatamsaka, Chan, Pure-land, Vinaya and Tantra would usually hold on to their own doctrines, and Theravada, Tibetan and Han Buddhism would rarely exchange with each other. Alas, at such a declining age of Buddhism, even though possessing the aspiration as noble as the Buddha's to rectify the people's minds, benefit sentient beings and honor the country and all the world, how is it possible to have that fulfilled?

Blessed with virtue in childhood, Ven. Master Xuecheng, my esteemed teacher, started a monastic life at a young age. He respectfully followed the instructions of his mentors, vowing to inherit the Teachings of the Buddha as well as the ancient sages. In his twenties, driven by great compassion, he travelled near and far to take on the responsibilities of carrying forward the undertakings of the Buddha. Possessing the good qualities of a virtuous teacher, he integrates the three language families of Buddhism and bridges the eight Han Buddhist sects, mentoring outstanding monks. Accommodating the current conditions while keeping to the Unconditioned Dharma, he blazes the trail that leads to Buddhahood. He advocates for inter-faith harmony, regardless of their superficial differences. He comprehends all Dharmas, despite of their variations in shape and nature. Auspiciousness is brought forth and evil signs are dispelled. Merits and wisdom are established and sufferings are eliminated. He enlightens beings with eruditeness in learning, glorifying Buddhism. He offers his deep resolve to serve all beings in the world, upholding the Dharma. 

A humble disciple as I am, I have followed the Venerable Master for almost ten years. As said in Avatamsaka Sutra, "Virtuous teachers, you originate the multitudes of all truths. Virtuous teachers, you generate the attaining of all virtues. Virtuous teachers, you are so hard to be met. Virtuous teachers, you are the source from which the jewels of knowledge of the ten powers are obtained. Virtuous teachers, you cause the vision of inexhaustible knowledge. Virtuous teachers, you cultivate the sprouts of goodness. Virtuous teachers, you reveal the door of omniscience. Virtuous teachers, you point out the way to enter the ocean of great knowledge." Remembering my teacher's infinite kindness, I ventured to take this opportunity to record some of his life stories. 

Shi Huikong
At Yunshuitang Building, Putian Guanghua Monastery
In the Beginning of the Ninth Month, Lunar Year of Xin Mao

Editor:Catherine
Tags:Ven. Master Xuecheng, inter-faith harmony

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