On Friday, Aug 31, a group cultivation for Ullambana was held at the Main Shrine at 10.30 a.m. More than 100 people attended the assembly. Before the chanting began, Venerable Zhen Ru delivered a discourse on the significance of Ullambana Festival and the right attitudes and contemplations before, during and concluding the session which would be conducive to a fruitful cultivation.
The main points of the discourse were as follows:
“A. The Preliminaries :
1. Calm down your wondering mind and try to develop a sincere and pious mind.
2. Develop a caring mind towards parents who are living or deceased, after that extend the scope to include all sentient beings who had been our parents before. Seek the blessings of the Triple Gems and wish that they may benefit from the coming ceremony.
3. Avoid activities which may lead to a distracted mind.
B. The Main Practice :
1. Participate in the ceremony fully. Drop all other activities.
2. Visualize that all Buddhas, members of the Arya Sangha are present to receive the offerings and bestow blessings.
3. Visualize that your parents and all sentient beings are receiving the benefit of the offerings to the Buddha and Sangha.
C. The Ending :
1. Repent the bad karmas we had created in the past and vow to learn from Buddhas and Bodhisattvas from now on.
2. Transfer the merits of the cultivation to all sentient beings and aspire to follow the example of Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva to help beings in the lower realms.”
At the end of the Dharma Assembly, a Merit Transferring ceremony was held at Da Yuan Dian. The Dharma assembly ended around 11.30 a.m.
May all well and blissful. Amituofo!