Fourteen monks and laypeople from Korean World Meditation Center visited Hsi Lai Temple on March 11 to meet with Abbot Ven. Huidong, and to survey the temple layout in order to gather ideas in preparation for building their own meditation center in Korea.
Abbot Ven. Huidong described to them about Fo Guang Shan’s four objectives and Hsi Lai Temple’s programs, and shared the experiences of how to blend Buddhism into the temple’s activities.
One of the Korean monks asked how to successfully run a temple. Ven. Huidong answered, “Let people learn and understand Buddhism through culture and education. Cultural events are a good way for people to open their heart. When they feel comfortable and happy, they will be curious about the teachings and come to take classes.”
“The goal of meditation is not to seek personal happiness and peace,” said Ven. Huidong, “it is a tool for us to find our attachments.”
“As we propagate the Dharma, when we are willing to contribute to society without thinking of what they can give to us in return, the temple just grows,” explained Ven. Huidong.
In the meeting, representatives of the Korean World Meditation Center presented Ven. Huidong a scroll of the Heart Sutra, and in return Hsi Lai Temple presented the visitors with books by Ven. Master Hsing Yun and other souvenirs. After the meeting, Ven. Youheng, director of the Social Education and Outreach Department, led the Korean sangha around the temple, showing them various places such as the main shrine, auditorium, and conference room. The monastics were impressed by the layout of the conference room, which is modeled after that of the United Nations. The tour ended at the meditation hall, where the monastics meditated for 10 minutes before leaving.