Lingyin Temple’s 2021 Water and Land Dharma Assembly Successfully Ends with Ceremony of Sending Back Saints Held

 | 2021-10-27 | View: 1154


The Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara Renunciation Day falls on October 24 (the nineteenth day of the ninth lunar month) this year. On this day, Lingyin Temple in Hangzhou held a ceremony of sending back the saints, marking a successful end of the 2021 Water and Land Liberation Dharma Assembly. By the power of such supreme merit and virtue, the participants of the ceremony sincerely prayed for national prosperity and health and happiness for the people. They also wished that the Buddha Dharma will shine forever and the Dharma Wheel will always be turned. 


In the morning, the rituals of complete offerings to six kinds of common people and four saints, completion with fragrance, and sending judges to all realms were performed at the interior altar. At the same time, sutra chanting and returning merits were practiced at other exterior altars. 


At 12:30, the ceremony of sending back the saints started with the ceremonial guards standing on the east and west insides in front of the Mahavira Hall and holding incenses, flowers, lamps, musical instruments, Buddhist scriptures, banners and canopies in their hands. The host Buddhist master took the tablets and plagues enshrined at the interior altar down and enclosed them into envelops. Led by the host Buddhist master, other participants walked slowly to the Mahavira Hall to pay respect to the Buddhas. 


With the sounds of drums and Buddhist chanting, the orderly queues set off from the Mahavira Hall to send back the saints. They held incense burners and banners while chanting and repeating Buddha’s name along the way, with gongs beaten to clear the way. They walked past the Medicine Buddha Hall, the screen wall of the temple and Lengquan Pavilion, and then finally reached the paper-made ferry to the Western Pure Land at Zizhu Square. The tablets and plagues were placed on the ferry in order. 

The ferry then was burned, signifying that the beings in the six realms have gained rebirth in the Western Pure Land and that all sufferings and troubles of sentient beings are cleared away. This is a Buddhist ritual for people to free beings from sufferings and bring altruism to all. 

At around 14:00, all participants chanted Buddha’s name and brought the 2021 Water and Land Liberation Dharma Assembly held by Lingyin Temple to a successful close.