Hailai friends won't meet in August 2012 due to the busy schedule of the Temple. We will meet on Sep. 29, 2012 (tentative) again. Thanks Elaine Yang for her kindness for providing her house for the Sep. event. Details to be followed.
On July 28, Hsilai Friends had its July 2012 monthly gathering at City
of Upland. Daniel and Martha, students from English Buddhist class and
Yoga class were very kind to offer their residence for the event. The
topic of the study was the interrelationship between Buddhism in the
West and modern science, particularly the information technology. The
much-heated discussion focused on a rather noticeable western Buddhist
community, the Buddhist Geeks whose mission is stated to bring the
"digital dharma" to the public by online broadcasting the interviews
they did with many prominent contemporary and innovative western
Buddhist practitioners. It was a fun, interesting, and
thought-provoking event for all the ten participated members. The
Hsilai Friend will meet again in Sep. 2012.
Hsilai Friends June gathering witnessed a very good discussion on the topic of possible connection between Jesus Christ and the teachings of the Buddha suggested by some people.
Jacky and Tomas has jointly brought this presentation and it was followed by a heated discussion among the participants. The consensus is that we should focus more on the similarities of their teaching for the common good of our society while respect the teachings from both traditions.
If you are interested in this topic, there are some materials you can get on lime:
2012 Interfaith Celebration theme video
Exploring the Common Ground: review the past and foresee the future
Celebration was the key concept that united the Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, and Buddhists who took part in the March 3, 2012 Interfaith Dialogue. Held once again at the University of the West in Rosemead, the afternoon event was attended by more than 150 participants who enjoyed song, chanting, prayer, and other rituals of worship performed by clergy and monastics, lay practitioners, and youth groups alike.
Hsi Lai Drum Troupe
The program opened with an inspiring performance by Hsi Lai Temple's Chinese Drum Troupe, whose piece, "Festival" was well suited to the mood and intent of the event. The upbeat melody appealed to all participants, captivating their attention and energizing them spiritually. A brief opening address by Venerable Hui Chi, Abbot of Hsi Lai Temple followed.
Rev. Shawn Kindorf and Dennis Bryan, playing the piano.
The first of five collaborative performances featured Reverend Shawn Kindorf and musician, Dennis Bryan of the Church of Religious Science. Entitled "How We Pray," this delightful demonstration combined a medley of songs with spoken explanations that delineate both the philosophy of religious science and its place in the spiritual community. Returning to our Interfaith event by popular demand, Reverend Kindorf communicates the heart-centered, wisdom-based philosophy that characterizes her religion with warmth, clarity, and enthusiasm.
Hindu Priest, Pundit Srikanthachar Tirumale Rangachar
The second performance featured Hindu Pundit Srikanthachar Tirumale Rangachar in a series of Sanscrit chants utilized for temple and home pujas. Previously associated with Shri Mandir in San Diego, he is currently a priest at Sri Shiridi Sai Sansthan in Los Angeles. Refreshments were served following Performance #2 on the lovely patio outside the U West Auditorium.
Cantor Hazzan Paul Buch with his guitar
With his talent for adapting traditional melodies in contemporary ways, Cantor Hazzan Paul Buch of Temple Beth Israel has been heralded as both "deeply spiritual" and a "cheerleader for God." He began Session Two with a vocal and guitar performance which involved the Interfaith audience in a fun and instructional sing-along. The infectious enthusiasm he generated comes from a wealth of diverse life experiences, including a 25 year career in television and film production.
Children from Islamic Education Center
Dr. Ahmad Sakr of the Islamic Education Center in Walnut, California is a frequent contributor to Interfaith activities sponsored by Hsi Lai Temple. This year's performance featured several youngsters from his center who chanted portions of the Koran from memory. Dr. Sakr introduced and elaborated on each child's contribution, providing insightful information and a "bridge of understanding" focused on commonalities that unite Muslims and non-Muslims.
Fo Guang Shan Hsi Lai Temple Chanting Group
The final performance of Session Two featured Hsi Lai Temple's Chanting 201 Class. Chanters joined with several monastics to present the Great Vows of Kuan Yin (Avalokitesvara) Bodhisattva, granter of courage and comfort, who provides the ultimate example of love and compassion. Through chanting, Buddhist practitioners express and contemplate the great vows while strengthening their resolve to follow her example by helping those in need.
Mario & Company
The Interfaith gathering closed with an original song composed and performed by Dharma students from Hsi Lai School and their teacher, Mario Cee. Their choral rendition of "The Karma Song" featured back-up by the 201 chanters, along with flute, piano, and guitar solos by the students themselves.
Dr. Sam C.S. Wu, president of the University of the West, offered thanks and parting remarks to all participants and a group photo was taken.
Closing: Group photo with presenters, participants and volunteers
According to our exit surveys, a great day was had by all, with the Overall Event averaging 4.68 of 5.00 on a sliding scale. Other survey items which received particularly high ratings included Refreshments (4.72), Registration Process (4.73), Comfort of Venue (4.74), and Staff Support (4.92). As before, the many positive individual comments offered by participants sum up the day nicely:
☺ Everything was perfect
☺ Lovely event
☺ Today has been a great day
☺ Keep up the good work!
☺ This was wonderful - thank you
☺ I love everything
☺ Keep it up!
☺ Love everything
☺ Thank you for a unique afternoon - transforming!
☺ It was great
☺ Good job
☺ I really enjoyed the explanation of the music
and our personal favorite:
Our next gathering will be on Saturday, Feb.11, 2012. The February gathering will focus on the preparation of the March 2012 event. The time is 4:30PM and the location is the meeting room (the room next to the Venerable's office) in Hsi Lai Temple.
As usual, a pot-luck dinner will be followed after the discussion.
Since our March event is coming in less a month, we sincerely hope that you can find your time to attend this important meeting.
(This one's reposted out of order, sorry!)
Our April monthly gathering will be a combination of meeting and a special guest speech, the below is the details:
Date: April 30
Venue: Hsi Lai Temple Meeting Room (Xiang Yun Tang)
About the speaker
Roger Lu is a certified professional coach with a passion to help executives maximize their personal and professional potential so that his clients can enjoy fulfilling lives and authentic happiness. Roger is the chair of Vistage International, the world’s leading chief executive organization, providing unparalleled access to new ideas and fresh thinking through CEO peer groups, one-on-one business coaching expert. Previously, Roger was President of Whitehouse Inn, Financial Consultant of Merrill Lynch, financial planning and investment management for high net-worth clients, First vice president/branch manager of Morgan Stanley, President of SinoPac Financial Services. Roger holds a M. A. in communications management(USC). He has several professional organizational positions.
In addition to that, Roger has a M. A. in Buddhist studies from the University of the with a thesis on early sutras and financial coaching. The lecture will focus how humanistic Buddhist wisdom and value plays the role in successful executive coaching
Sep. 2011 meeting in Huntington Beach.
We got invitation letter for 2012 Interfaith Celebration done.
And, we had best food ever!
Hsilai Friends July meeting was held on 16th at Jenny Tang's house.
We had a special guest for this month's gathering. Dr. Adam Hy gave us a
talk on Alzheimer's Disease. As usual, there was a potluck dinner after meeting.