Winter 2015 Seven-day Chan Session Held at Lingyin Temple

LY-Temple | 2016-01-06 | View: 1777

From December 24 to 30, Lingyin Temple held the seven-day Chan session and a total of 126 resident monks participated.

On December 24, Sangha of Lingyin Temple gathered at the Hall of Patriarch and performed the ceremony of offering incense to the patriarchs. The group then ritually approached the abbot’s quarters to ask the abbot for a leave of life and death (leave of absence). Ven. Guangquan gave his instruction that all should cherish this seven-day Chan retreat and dedicate themselves to the practice of Buddhism by leaving aside distractions, reflecting on thoughts, in seeking for enlightenment in the Chan meditation hall--an ideal place for Buddhist cultivation.

Ven. Guangquan also shared his experience participating in the Chan meditation room of Gaoming Temple over 20 years ago. Despite difficult conditions at that time, Buddhist monks were so enthusiastic in pursuing Buddhism that a bowl of rice porridge or a bit of pickled beans seem to reveal a sense of Buddhist Dharma. The centenarian Master Delin was still concerned about the construction of the Chan meditation hall and saw to the construction progress every day for he aspired to promote Buddhism and bring benefit to more sentient beings. The Chan meditation hall symbolizes the most fundamental part of Chan Buddhism and the core the temple. Ven. Guangquan also reminded every one that during the seven-day Chan retreat they should try to reflect on their thoughts and remain in the state of Chan meditation, which is the key to Chan Buddhism. On December 30, Ven. Guangquan hosted the ceremony of bringing the seven-day Chan session to a pleasing conclusion.

Buddhist monks asking for a leave of life and death

Ven. Guangquan’s Dharma talk

Opening session of the seven-day Chan retreat in the Chan Hall

Opening session of the seven-day Chan retreat

Chan walks in the hall

Ven. Guangquan supervising with a flat wooden stick

Ven. Guangquan presided the ceremony
of bringing the seven-day Chan session

Buddhist monks reporting back from a leave of life and
death after the conclusion of the seven-day Chan session

Note: The Chan meditation Hall is an ideal place for Chan Buddhist cultivation. It is a tradition for Chan Buddhist temples to hold the seven-day Chan retreat in the winter away from other tasks and distractions.