Famen Temple allied with Fo Guang Shan
【人間社記者 Hui Ju Shaanxi Province報導】 2017-12-02
  • 圖說:On behalf of Venerable Master Hsing Yun, Most Venerable Hsin Bao gave Ven. Master Xuecheng one-stroke calligraphy “The Moon is Reflected in a Thousand Rivers, Without Clouds the Sky is Vast”. 圖/fjnet.com提供

  • 圖說:Most Ven. Hsin Bao said that this year was the 30th anniversary of the recovery of the Buddha's Finger Relic. Through the cause and conditions of Buddha’s Finger Relic, Fo Guang Shan Monastery and Famen Temple formed a friendly temple alliance. 人間社記者Hui Jing攝

  • 圖說:On behalf of Venerable Master Hsing Yun, Most Venerable Hsin Bao gave Ven. Master Xuecheng one-stroke calligraphy “The Moon is Reflected in a Thousand Rivers, Without Clouds the Sky is Vast”. 人間社記者Hui Jing攝

  • 圖說:Venerable Master Xuecheng (Middle) and Most Venerable Hsin Bao (Right), who respectively represented Famen Temple and Fo Guang Shan Monastery, signed the agreement to form the alliance. 人間社記者Hui Jing攝

On November 23, 2017, the conference to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of the recovery of Buddha’s Finger Relic and the signing ceremony of friendly brother temples, were held at Famen Temple in Baoji City, Shaanxi Province, China. Over 3000 eminent Buddhist monks, prominent personage of society, and media from all over the world attended this distinguished event. In 2002, the Buddha’s Finger Relic was escorted to Taiwan to be consecrated, revered and worshipped by Buddhists in Taiwan. Over 8 million worshipers went to see the Buddha’s Finger Relic and paid their respects. The Buddha’s Finger Relic was on display in the Fo Guang Shan Monastery twice where it could be considered to contribute towards the increased interaction between Famen Temple and Fo Guang Shan Monastery. This event was very successful which set a perfect example for friendly exchange between the Buddhist organizations in Taiwan and mainland China. Fo Guag Shan Monastery and Famen Temple can form a brother temple alliance at this important moment that made the affinity with the Buddhadharma even more distinguished. On the same day, Famen Temple also formed a brother temple alliance with Hong Kong Po Lin Monastery.

Famen Temple is a temple with a long history, and also has magnificent pagoda. The Buddha’s Finger Relic that consecrated in Faman Temple is a rare treasure. During Tang Dynasty, 200 and more years ago, eight emperors welcomed Buddha’s Finger Relic to the palace for consecration six times, and escorted the relic from palace back to the temple twice. These events caused a sensation in the imperial court and among the ordinary people. In 1987, the Buddha’s Finger Relic was recovered and reappeared in the human world. This great recovery illuminated the past and galloped to the present which astonished the world.

During the ceremony commemorating the 30th anniversary of the recovery of the Buddha's Finger Relic, Venerable Master Xuecheng, President of the Buddhist Association of China and the Abbot of Famen Temple gave an introduction. He used the topic “Buddha’s hands hold the four seas; Thunders shake the five continents” to introduce the causes and conditions of the major events of the recovery of Buddha’s Finger Relic. He also mentioned that Buddha’s Finger Relic has been to Thailand, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Korea for people to consecrate, revere and worship and people were moved by what they saw. Venerable Master Xuecheng said Venerable Master Hsing Yun led the delegation to Famen Temple to welcome and escort Buddha’s Finger Relic to Taiwan to be seen and venerated. Buddha’s Finger Relic toured around Taiwan for 37 days which caused a widespread reaction of spiritual excitement on the island. Tens of thousands of Buddhist followers lined the streets to welcome this sacred ancient relic. They paid their respects to the Finger Relic day and night. This event promoted the unprecedented harmony and aggregation in the blood of Chinese People. In Chinese history, Buddhism and Famen Temple made outstanding contributions. From now on, Chinese Buddhists need to continuously dig into the profound meaning of Buddhism, thoroughly elaborate and promote the modern meanings of culture and history of Faman Temple in order to respond to President Xi Jinping’s initiative of deeply digging into the cultural and spiritual meanings behind the cultural relics to “bring cultural relics back to life” and promote Chinese culture to advance to the world.

Soon after, Venerable Master Xuecheng and Most Venerable Hsin Bao, who respectively represented Famen Temple and Fo Guang Shan Monastery, signed the agreement to form the alliance. The alliance certificate says “In 2002, Famen Temple’s Buddha’s Finger Relic was escorted to Taiwan for consecration and worship that created a sensation on Taiwan island. Shaanxi Famen Temple and Taiwan Fo Guang Shan Monastery had formed a deep affinity. On November 23, 2017, Famen Temple grandly held the conference to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of the recovery of Buddha’s finger relic. Owing to this distinguished cause and condition, Shaanxi Famen Temple and Taiwan Fo Guang Shan Monastery affiliated to become the friendly brother temples. From now on, both temples would enhance the exchange of the Dharma propagation to add glory to Buddhism in Taiwan and mainland China; to pray for the realization of humanistic pure land and world peace!”

On behalf of Venerable Master Hsing Yun, Most Venerable Hsin Bao gave Venerable Master Xuecheng one-stroke calligraphy “The Moon is Reflected in a Thousand Rivers, Without Clouds the Sky is Vast”. He mentioned that when Buddha’s Finger Relic was recovered, then President of the Buddhist Association of China Zhao Puchu once praised and recited a poem “Shadow Relic is Neither One Nor Different, It is Just As The Moon is Reflected in Three Rivers”. For this reason, Venerable Master Hsing Yun gave Famen Temple his one-stroke calligraphy “The Moon is Reflected in a Thousand Rivers, Without Clouds the Sky is Vast” as a present. The milk of Dharma is blended and the same lifeline of Dharma hands down to both China and Taiwan. Famen Temple has a deep relationship with Fo Guang Shan Monastery and Venerable Master Hsing Yun. In September this year, Venerable Master Xuecheng visited Fo Guang Shan Monastery and accepted the Honorary Doctorate degree awarded by Nanhua University. Venerable Master Xuecheng gave a speech with the title “The Spirit of the Youth, The Mission of the Bodhisatta” to audience. This speech had turned the Dharma wheel, splashed Dharma nectar which had sowed Bodhi seeds into the devotee’s field of mind. It also happens that this year was the 30th anniversary of the recovery of the Buddha's Finger Relic. Through the cause and conditions of Buddha’s Finger Relic, Fo Guang Shan Monastery and Famen Temple formed a friendly temple alliance; was witnessed and blessed by elder monastics from domestic and overseas. This special event symbolizes “Opportunities arise in rare moments in time” which has created a proactive and positive affect on the exchange and contact between the Buddhist organizations across locations and it has also brought the dawn light of world peace.

Venerable Mater Hsing Yun hopes that the two brother temples will expand the exchange of the Dhamma propagation undertakings including: religious doctrines, celebration activities, academia and culture, art and literate exhibits, publications, Sangha and devotee communications, talents fostering, Sangha and devotee education, and Monastery system perfection. With the vision to strengthen the promotion of traditionally inherited Chinese culture, integrated with Buddhism to add glory to the cross-strait Buddhism and create a new milestone for the mankind well-beings.

(Translated by Jim Maa from BLIA-Detroit)