The 8th day of the twelfth lunar month is the Buddha Enlightenment’s day, also known as Dharma day. To celebrate this special day, Fo Guang Shan Hsi Lai Temple prepared 6,400 bowls of Laba porridge to share with the public on January 10th. With the assistance of the BLIA Los Angeles Chapter, Hsi Lai Temple was able to deliver cups of porridge under strict COVID guidelines. To many members and devotees, the Laba porridge brought warmth and timely blessings.
Besides members, the Abbot of Hsi Lai Temple, Venerable Hui Dong, wanted all visitors who came to the temple—after making online reservations— to receive a bowl of porridge and share in the joyful celebration of Buddha’s enlightenment. Many helped prepare and distribute the porridge: from venerables, Alex Wu, president of the BLIA Los Angeles Chapter, Yuqin Ke, director of the Elder Advisor Committee, BLIA members, to volunteers—everyone pitched in making this meaningful event successful!
Venerable Zhi Hsi and Venerable Zhi San also gave Laba porridge to various businesses around Hsi Lai Center. They introduced the meaning of Buddha’s enlightenment and laba porridge, and shared the news about Buddha’s Light Hsi Lai School moved down from the temple and into the new Hsi Lai Center. They thanked the businesses for their continual support and services to the community.
University of the West students and teachers, alike, also received laba porridge from Hsi Lai Temple on Dharma Day. Jincheng Wu, member of Monterey Park Subchapter, shared both the Laba porridge and the origin story behind it with his family. Yunzhao He, member of Walnut Subchapter, appreciated the chance to serve the community on this special day. Dharma Day was an opportunity to turn firm belief into practice and to share Humanistic Buddhism in our world today. A warm bowl of Laba porridge helped close the gap between people during the pandemic, and provided Hsi Lai Temple a moment to thank everyone for their support throughout the years and send well-wishes for the pandemic to be over soon.