Posted in Buddhism, Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Dharma Talks, Mahayana culture, On the Path, Precepts Holders, Sangha Relationships, Vinaya

New Page as Traveling Sangha offering Dharma

I’ve decided to offer my humble services teaching dharma and precepts in English to temples and monasteries.  I’ve been encouraged by my dharma friends to start to let more Sangha know that I am now willing to travel to their way places.  I’ve strongly believed in practicing one tradition during one’s monastic life and for me that is Chinese Buddhism.  I’ve never dabbled or practiced other religions since taking refuge and five precepts.   And since becoming a bhikshuni I have experienced the guidance of the Vinaya precepts that have given me such comfort and solidity in my daily life!  I want people to understand that comfort and solidity is very important foundation for mind training.  Refuge and 5 Precepts are the foundation for everyone’s practice and should be taken as the basic framework for their practice.

Sangha can see the difference and you can feel the difference in your daily life when you have precepts even as a householder.  It does support you.  It does benefit your mind training.

For those interested in having me talk you can contact me via email venhongyang (at) gmail.com  and I will respond with information to help you decide to furnish an air ticket or a train ticket.  I have freed up my fall to spring schedule, and will open my spring to summer to accommodate your scheduled events and services.

If you are Western people you may not understand how to sponsor Sangha to give dharma talks and precepts.  You usually ask first then offer the transportation cost plus housing and dana monetary offering at the day’s end or end of event.

I only practice Chinese Buddhism and that’s the context of my Dharma talks and training/encouragement in Precepts (Refuge and 5 Precepts, next year qualified for VInaya Precepts and 8 Precepts giving training and ordination for monastics).  I will only transmit the Dharmagupta lineage as that is the one I hold myself.  I will not participate in multi-yana (Theravada, Mahayana combined lineages being offered as a choice to the candidates to pick one) ordinations ever, so don’t ask.  I will only transmit my dharmagupta lineage ordination line with only dharmagupta lineage masters beside me and of proper numbers.

Posted in Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Dharma Talks, Precepts Holders

Schedule for 2015

DSC00495Three sages

January to March 2015  Winter Retreat  Master will be able to meet with you by appointment, feel free to visit.

April 2015  Preparation for Buddha’s Birthday this year will be a group effort, new search for a basin with a pedestal

May 2015  Buddha’s Birthday

24 Dharma Talk in Des Moines, IA:   Triple Refuge and 5 Precepts and How to apply it in Daily life

Ven. Long Yun will be the guest speaker with Ven. Hongyang supporting with commentary.

27-31 Gethsemani IV Encounter (DIM-MID) Buddhist Catholic Dialogue

hosted by the catholic monks at Abbey of Gethsemani, New Haven, KY

June 2015  1-5  the 2015 Dharma Teacher Gathering

July 2015   Vassa, TBA

August 2015   Vassa, TBA Iowa State University Buddhist club dharma talks welcome and schedule to set

September 2015  Vassa, TBA

October 2015  Vassa ends, Western Buddhist Monastic Gathering

hosted by Sravasti Abbey in Washington state (west coast)

November 2015  TBA

December 2015  TBA

January 2016  TBA

February 2016  TBA

Posted in Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Dharma Books, On the Path, Precepts Holders, Sangha Relationships, Solitary Living, Temple life, Vinaya

Sangha Conduct – Advice to Americans in robes invite for contributors

English: Chinese Buddhist monks performing a f...
English: Chinese Buddhist monks performing a formal ceremony in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, China. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Regarding my invite for Sangha members to contribute their wisdom to Sangha Conduct-Advice to Americans in Robes.

Only Sangha fully ordained in robes presently in good standing are asked to contribute.

Living anywhere you have to deal with Americans in robes, or if you are an American in robes; any ethnic group, any tradition. Declare your tradition and give me a brief autobiography

Living in solitude on your own or living in community.

Any level of English, it will be edited for typos and grammar as best I can do.

ANY STYLE, poetry, plain speak, write like you telling another Sangha member some needed advice.  Share stories if you wish, keep the dharma names in them or make an obvious fake name, something like Ven.  ChattyKathy or Ven. Snipesalot… you know be creative or not.  ANY way you write is perfectly ok.

The deadline is Monday June 24, 2013.

And no limits to length on your contribution, but at least a page not a sentence. No Koan, no gungan; Haiku if you must but need to include a lesson or verbiage to add to it or increase our understanding in the Vinaya or Buddha dharma or life in general.

All your work if you have citations include them if not I will find what I can if citing sutras or other ppls words declare in the sentence (paraphrased/written by/from NAME if have year or page great if not just a name).

Write for the Sangha not the public.

It will be on Amazon through my account for sale. Selling a book there does not make you rich, I’m not rich, occasionally I get a partial tank of gas out of it every few months or so. Mostly it’s for benefit of future generations. You can sell it too, I’ll give you advice a bit later on that.

Posted in Buddhism, Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Buddhist Health and Wellness, Chan - authentic Masters words, Chinese culture, Confuscianism, Daoism/Taoism, Mahayana culture, On the Path, Precepts Holders, Temple life, Three Religions of China, Translation Resources, Vinaya

Calm Clarity Temple

English: A talisman from one of the Lingbao Sc...

I had expected some fanfare at least a post comment or two on Facebook  oh well people are busy. but I finally picked the temple name.

Calm Clarity Temple

It came from knowing what attributes I  carry and promote as the abbess. My main attributes are Calm and Clarity.  I am not  saying I am the best but it’s the attributes I want to carry forth as a signature of this temple and it’s mission to meet the communities needs here and carry on my translation efforts to have a complete Mahayana English Tripitaka of the Taisho Edition of the Chinese Mahayana Tripitaka.

The reason this edition is so important is that it is inclusive of the Pali Cannon and has an Esoteric Division (yes, people  Esoteric came from China through India as well as accumulations of the effects of adaptations to local religious beliefs and cultures.  It has all the schools in Buddhism in both Theravada and Mahayana including I suspect some of the older ones, that are not all translated out into English, what we have today is scholars works and they are not accessible, largely out of print or not available to the public.  It has commentaries, verses, records, and lineages of our Sangha, this may not be interesting reading but it is really good for us to know what bits from history we can glean from these being translated.

I honor my interest in Daoism with the recognition of a specific school, the Complete Reality School, it’s burned it’s place in my noggin.  I like it very much, I also have a title memorized “The Master Who Embraces Simplicity” from my early days of study of Chinese culture included the Three Religions of Buddhism, Daoism, Confucianism.  I liked monastic life for it was easy fit for my lifestyle the way I lived it and the way I thought about my life.  To honor me, and my past lives I chose Calm and Clarity for the temple attributes.  When you choose a temple name it’s to have a purpose to benefit the country, the states, the county and the town in which you live; that’s responsibility towards society creating positive conditions for prosperity, reduce conflicts and improve the quality of life for everyone.

The mission carries on the Bhikshuni one.  To create awareness of Vinaya Sangha residing in the USA. To provide Buddhist services and offer instruction in Buddhism to the public, and conduct creative, charitable, and education programs for interested persons.

The primary specialty is the translation of the Mahayana Tripitaka Taisho Edition in Chinese to English.  Serving as translator, education of translators, networking with translators around the world, being a part of the development of an international database the would provide free online access to all English translated Tripitaka materials.

English: Venerable Tzu Chuang, founder of Hsi ...
English: Venerable Tzu Chuang, founder of Hsi Lai Temple, in an alms begging round during Sangha Day, 2006 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Posted in Buddhist Culture, Buddhist Health and Wellness, Chinese culture, Conflicts in Buddhist Life, Mahayana culture, On the Path, Precepts Holders

Peace in every step, trust in precepts, certainty in mind- how to endure difficulties as robed Sangha

USA Sangha see all of uphold our precepts from all the traditions

Peace in every step, trust in precepts, certainty in mind helps a Sangha endure.  This is the only way to endure difficult times.  There is no other way if you wish to remain a monk or nun with precepts.  Otherwise do not wear our robes.  Go back and stay in lay-life.  How we endure is based upon the guidance of the Vinaya precepts we were given.

It is a parajika offense to support suicide by writing your support for it through images, posters, online posts, providing means of suicide the implements  the knowledge on how to do it, the people to carry the instruments for your behalf to give to the person you want to kill.  Arguing with a Sangha member in favor of the act of self-immolation in and out of Tibet is a parajika offense by written words or in speeches.  Because you say it with your words… get it.  Now GET OUT OF THOSE ROBES !!! I have argued with Tibetan Sangha particularly it’s the Westerners who really argue and I have enough. You westerners get a clue, you are not Tibetan even robes. Thus not supported by their system. Parajika offense is the most serious and you can never abandon it and call your self monks.

It is pointless to argue with anyone in the freetibet bandwagon, they are incapable of logic.  Their leader promotes suicide, it is so shocking that this thinking comes from the West to effectively kill, probably end Tibetan Buddhism as it was.  Every time I do engage them, by standing up for Vinaya and supporting life, they accuse me of being a Chinese govt supporter or a spy! I mean, really that no kind of logic.  I am defending the right to life, not debating, I am standing up for the sake of the Tibetan Sangha not politics. Only those two things are my concerns in countering statements that are pro-suicide.

You cannot debate Buddhism people,  I hate the way western people think their rambling emotional aggressive accusatory style in speech is debate when it is not.  Buddhist debate is seriously controlled by the Sangha, and done in privacy of the Sangha sima.  Buddhist debate is only done for proof of education and shows the level of understanding by the student, its specialized in style and has to be learned.  It is not the stuff of forums or Facebook or comments field.

They don’t debate they just bitch.  They don’t read, just use emotional statements, they don’t accept logic.  If you counter with logic and reputable sources they just get emotional like teenagers do when they are overwhelmed.  It is a rancid movement full of emotion, abuse, and does not favor life.  When it started early one the movement was pure in intention but not effective.

Now the only effective thing is that the FreeTibet movement is doing is that they are good at marketing, selling posters, Buddhist goods, tshirts with burning monks images, and buttons and the like.  They are emotional campaigners who promote officially suicide for political gain of a very, very few people.  Most of them  do not understand the history of Tibet, nor it’s warrior and warlord society, it was brutal, it was aggressive, repressive, and offered nothing to the whole of the country.

Westerners are not used to monks who commit violent acts, nor will they easily accept teachings from a tradition that is violent.  It does not accord with their own understanding of Buddhism and the Sangha.  Monks who abandon their Vinaya precepts and kill, fight, torture, enslave and many still do.  I am not saying there are no Tibetan monks who uphold strictly the Vinaya for there are indeed many that do and some are highly attained and they do not touch politics at all.  But those monks who abandoned their  precepts they go back the monastery or commit the acts within the monastery in their robes thus they mock their preceptors, their elders and the saints, and those formerly held precepts and preach kindness and compassion with beautiful smiles on their faces.

If there are robed Sangha members joining with the FreeTibet movement with this purpose then upon the joining they have openly committed parajika offense.  They are no longer considered monks by the rest of our global Vinaya Sangha. 

Gendun Drup, 1st Dalai Lamathis is the first Dalai Lama in Tibet.

Stephanie Brigden, director of the Free Tibet campaign group, said the spate of protests were “aimed at sending the next generation of China’s unelected regime a clear signal that Tibetans will continue to fight for their freedom”.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/china/9663194/China-Communist-Party-Congress-teenage-Tibetans-set-themselves-on-fire-in-protest.html

The protests have divided exiled Tibetans with some seeing them as a legitimate protest while others worry they contravene Buddhist beliefs in the sanctity of life.

This shows that they do not have a large amount of support to continue this horrific trend. Since 2011 they have promoted this one method as a means to force China to end political repression of Tibet and declare it independent.

Many gathered for a candle-lit prayer vigil in Dharamshala, home to about 10,000 exiled Tibetans, on Thursday in front of a large poster bearing the faces of those who have self-immolated.

last paragraph states:

Last week, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay urged China to address Tibetans’ grievances saying she recognised their “intense sense of frustration and despair which has led them to resort to such extreme means”.

Here is a good short article on CNN.com and reasonable summary of why it is not working for those promoting suicide in Tibet.

So why does the self-immolation of one man accomplish so much, but the same gesture performed by so many others accomplishes nothing? Perhaps the question should be phrased differently, because a closer look at Bouazizi’s deed and the Tibetan cases reveals that it is something other than the sheer number of self-immolations that makes them a catalyst for change.

Tunisians could easily identify with Bouazizi’s extreme predicament. His actions spoke to the community’s shared frustration and despair. But the demands of Tibetan self-immolators are varied. Some want a “free Tibet,” as do all Tibetan exiles, but others only want freedom of religion, or political autonomy, or the opportunity to study in Tibetan as opposed to Chinese, or the return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet.

Self-immolations that prompt political change are extraordinary and rare events. The ancient Greeks had two different words for time: chronos for ordinary time and kairos for time of special quality — a particularly propitious time for which our “right time” is a rather weak translation. For self-immolations to be politically successful, they have to happen in kairos. Bouazizi, Đúc and Palach had many imitators, but none since have achieved so much.

That’s why the high number of self-immolations among Tibetans lately could be read as an implicit admission of failure. Even though the first self-immolation by a former Tibetan monk, Thupten Ngodup, on April 27, 1998, in New Delhi, had some public impact, it failed to cause the political commotion that Bouazizi triggered in the Arab world. Nor have any of the other Tibetan self-immolators since.

http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/28/opinion/bradatan-self-immolation/index.html

Ok, since after this the piece is after all an opinion, gets sloppy.  Instead of saying more constructive and effective methods should be offered and participated by Tibetans the writer goes on to state that since the young teenagers who have only known occupied Tibet are doing it, they must be doing it for the attention.  So therefore the most effective means is suicide because it keeps the free Tibet issue in the world’s mindset and eventually we will get tired of it and do something!?

when you are in flames your presence cannot be ignored anymore.

It is a shouting game of sorts, except that no party shouts. The Tibetans express themselves by burning; the Chinese authorities do the same by shooting Tibetans. Then, another monk or nun engages in self-expression and everything starts anew.

Palden Gyatso, a Tibetan monk who spent more than 30 years in Chinese prisons and labor camps, once said: “For those who use brute force, there is nothing more insulting than a victim’s refusal to acknowledge their power.”

Rarely has the desire for recognition been so desperate and moving.

That’s how the article ended. Approval granted, gee… I guess this mean that CNN supports suicide to get attention???!!! And yes it just an opinion piece.

This is not a healthy turn for Western minds, suicides are illegal in our country.  In fact if the person survives one there is the inevitable court date to grant a mental facility authority over their life with repeated court appearances to monitor the person.  All to protect their right to life which they threw away or keep throwing away.  I think with our problems in our own country with a sharp increase of suicide among soldiers, depressed persons, emotional persons that CNN does not need to end an article showing the Tibetans want attention so they are now getting kids to kill themselves in Tibet because those kids got influenced because they were born in Tibet and thus are a product of the new Tibet. The lame line concludes… awwwh it’s so sad… but moving??? Huh?  moving as in inspiring??? where? whom? I don’t think so!! It’s suicide for attention.

Then I cam across a bitter fight over a name change.., a name change!  There are factions in Dharmasala right now being pushed by many Westerners to promote free speech… brentwerner is a vocal promoter.  They changed it from TGIE tibetan government in exile to CTA central tibetan authority…  And now life and limb are at risk, and those western supportors are confused… saye whtf? it’s free speech man… they openly criticize the repression, saying why now the Dalai Lama becomes the same s the Chinese govt, a Maoist.. well they said he stepping backward into what was Tibetan history of internal conflict….well he did study Mao they said and liked it way back in the 60s when the same fight erupted over people promoted to power.

Western ppl need to stay out of it,  stop condescending to a foreign ex-pates who abandoned their country and took their wealth with them.  Tibet has a long history of warlords among their people that was the reason they feel in the DL time, and in the past.  Now it comes again in India.  I wonder how long India will tolerate them.

Tibetan Buddhism is riddled with violence in Tibet and outside it. The attempted killing of Katrol Rinpoche by his own teacher and his repeated rapes is only the first time we hear from a victim directly. It has used the Tibetan warlord tactics fully, which means they abandon their precepts as monks to carry out politics.  This is the norm for them.  I now because what I read about them will not acknowledge their lineage as Vinaya.  For they have admitted they openly abandon precepts to carry out gains in political power.  I will not support Tibetan Buddhism as it is.  It must reform to be considered Buddhist to begin to regain their ancient wealth in Buddhist history and contributions to it they must retreat back into the guidance of good monks and nuns.  I am not saying there are not good monks and nuns who never abandon their precepts in Tibet for any reason.  There certainly are.  However, regarding Vinaya precepts being abandoned freely by the monks that hold them, this is certainly shameful and will bring the downfall of Tibetan Buddhism.

Many in the West are naive, especially those who jump on the freetibet movement after studying in Tibetan Center.  Later they leave, and it’s the case now because of this  warlord mentality over-reaching the guidance of the Triple Refuge and 5 Precepts they were given.  As people West lose patience with the suicides they will withdraw their donations.  Thus inhibiting the growth of authentic teachings being offered and hurt the potential for their continue practice in the West.

Right now, I see most of the intellectuals in the West are gone, leaving the sincere but new to the culture, the crazies, the emotionally weak, the depressed, the psychotic and those you really do not need in your movement.  Right now I see anarchists joining your movement for the sheer joy of destruction, yes I’ve checked their FB walls, they care only for anarchy, not about Tibet, not about your causes or your conflicts.

Posted in Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Buddhist Health and Wellness, Chan - authentic Masters words, Chinese culture, Mahayana culture, On the Path, Precepts Holders, Sangha Relationships, Translation Resources, Vinaya

Build Iowa’s First Nunnery

 

Build the first Iowa Buddhist nunnery

Build the first Iowa Buddhist nunnery. The need to train in English is what has been missing for 160 years of Buddhist history in the United States.  This place will meet the needs of residents of this state interested in Buddhist study. The nunnery monastics will provide traditional services, cultural, educational, and practical training for those interested in Buddhism.

To understand Buddhism in the USA you need Sangha that speak English.  To train you need to be able to ask detailed or receive detailed instructions in order to progress or you are the perpetual visitor with no real depth.  You are limited by language or can’t access masters of higher levels to grow.  Even you may never know who the Elders are that are talented, capable dharma masters famous in their temples for being teachers but they live in obscurity to most in the USA.  Personal contact with robed Sangha is lacking for most interested in Buddhism and greatly needed.  Temples in the East coast or West coast have some limited English programs but all are ethnic funded and full training is better in their own language, clearer, higher level of instructions and attainments by laity is very possible but not if you don’t know their language.  This is a significant obstacle to your practice in Buddhism.

The first Bhikshuni fully trained and ordained has arrived in Iowa.  This is a good first step for Iowa.  Ven. Hong Yang is an Iowan and a woman fully ordained in the Dharmagupta lineage of the Bhikshuni Sangha in Taiwan.

A cool history this Iowan.  She was tonsured at Xi Fang Temple, Brookyn, NY. She left home resolved on 9/11/2001.  She decided to stay in XFT helping in NYC, many needed to recover their spirits.  She working with and trained as a sramaneri alongside the other temple’s masters.  She is a 11 year English-Chinese translator of the Taishio Tripitaka which is in Chinese. She has published 5 books, 3 volumes translating the standardized daily recitations in the Chinese Buddhist temples into English and one rare translation of the Bao Hua Mountain monk Ven. JiXian De Qing.  The translation project will continue in the nunnery.  She and others will offer training to those interested in becoming translators.  Also she is in charge of a historical documentary film  of Buddhism in the USA is currently underway digitizing material from actual Buddhist monks and nuns who reside in the USA as they offer it documenting what has never been documented called “Sangha Walks”.  See more about this on www.sanghawalks.org

Iowans are savvy to Buddhist trends but lack access to reliable dharma masters in traditional Buddhism.  Due to the increased awareness of Buddhism and most often one of its famous methods is meditation a decision has been made to create a stable place right here to learn about Buddhism. We need a stable place so many dharma teachers can come and teach about Buddhism.  A variety of masters offering training in different schools will improve access to higher level reputable traditional teachers.  The teachers invited to come here are from the Vinaya Sangha; they must hold full precepts and be properly trained.  In order to attract them to our place, it needs to be set up first properly.  If prayers alone can motivate the Dalai Lama to come to Iowa like he did last year then it’s quite the timely to fulfill his instructions to us residing monks and nuns to become leaders of Buddhism in Iowa.  A broad base and open respectful minds will be the cornerstone of the visiting public to this new nunnery.

Iowans are proud of their history.  The historical significance to note here is of being the first nunnery that is Buddhist, second to that is the protected training environment for women and thirdly that English be the primary spoken and service language.  So that the members of the public that asks for, learns well, practices and brings back benefits to their community by enjoying traditional services, counseling, mental health services, meditation, classes, cultural events art and cultural events.

Iowans are by their very nature generous and curious.  Donate if you want to make your historical mark right now!  Be proud to be sponsor and make  your mark in Iowa history and add to Buddhist US history in our Sangha Walks project that will also flourish in a permanent collection online and media.  Care about yourself enough to create merit and virtue, benefit all aspects of your life and reduce the karmic cause and effect of negative seeds sprouting in their due time when you contribute selflessly.

What We Need & What You Get

We are open to a house, or commercial building or land purchase.  We recognize it requires more money for remodel or building on the space.  We wish to keep it minimal but safe.  Green but efficient use of space, growing fruits and vegetables, but technology embraced in media.  We are wishing to create a healthy and secure environment for you and your family to enjoy your studies and classes at our nunnery:

We need at least $40,000 total funding.  We at least need a down payment of $3000 plus 6 months operating expenses of $18,000.  We may need remodeling funds including the purchase of new appliances or major repairs up to $20,000.  Basic utilities run about $200 a month, food needs around $300 per month.   Core living costs are covered also we need liability insurance of $5,000 to cover public events to meet legal requirements and codes.

The rewards for Indiegogo:  There are very traditional Buddhist rewards offered.  The malas and the Jade were brought from Taiwan from very traditional Buddhist family store.   Most temples sell them for basic food or medicine needs. The ones offered here are the personal purchase made by Ven. Hong Yang during her training and ordination.  This means the good karma of her training and ordination has a ripple effect that is passed on in good intentions to anyone who buys or donates or receives on of these!  See the rewards for details.

All funds raised in excess of this project if not needed must be dispersed as the Vinaya guides us. The basic 4 requisites of food, clothing, shelter, and medicine are all that Buddhist monks and nuns require.  Woman have the hardest time in Buddhism to receive even the 4 requisites after they become nuns so this funding source is also greatly needed and appreciated so priority will go to this group out of compassion for the need is great. May your good karma of your generous act increase and grow 10-fold throughout your life and those of your family’s.

The Impact in Iowa and the Mid-West

Stability is made when a place to practice is also available that is basic in comfort and accessible to all who study Buddhism from traditional teachers known as the Sangha, the robed ones.  Mind training is an individual effort but training is offered in a group setting that also can give one the advantage of feeling and being emotionally and socially supported.

Build Iowa’s First Nunnery

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Posted in Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Chan - authentic Masters words, On the Path, Precepts Holders, Translation Resources

Indiegogo Build Iowa’s First Buddhist Nunnery

http://igg.me/p/158236?a=813234

Build Iowa’s First Buddhist Nunnery. Please click to go to the Indigogo site and

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