Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation

Sep 30th
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Home Our Founder Master's Teachings Light of TIMA Likes the Compassion of the Moon

Light of TIMA Likes the Compassion of the Moon

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“Happy Autumn Festival! Yesterday evening, although there was rainfall, it was still a clear night. It is said that the moon in the sky is very round. I hope very much that every day and at all times we have a bright moon in our heart; the moon is both clean and bright.”

Today (September 8) is Autumn Festival, the 15th day of the eighth month in the Lunar Calendar, the day when the moon is at its roundest. It is also the time we hold the annual conference of the Tzu Chi International Medical Association (TIMA). Volunteers from around the world come together and share their experiences and learn from each other. During her speech at the volunteers’ morning assambly, Master Cheng Yen used the example of the light of the moon to remind everyone that their hearts must be full of purity and compassion.

She thanked all the bodhisattvas of the TIMA for showing the light in the middle of darkness, wherever they are in the world, they walk to the needy persons voluntarily.

“Wherever there are sick, poor or elderly people living on their own, those great doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and volunteers will be there. They go to remote areas and help those most in need and the most sick. Each year everyone takes part in several large-scale free clinics – all are remarkable, taking a plane or a boat to reach the most remote and inaccessible places.”

She went on to say: “I see them, whether it is removing cataracts or dental work, such as the latest case of false teeth, allowing a person immediately to have teeth, how miraculous it is! Or there are those who stumble and need to hold on to others; through an operation, they are able to open their eyes and see the world.”

Take the example of Su, who lives in a poor district of the Philippines. Because she had cataracts, she was unable to see clearly for 20 years. Her son married and has a son, who is now seven to eight years old. But she was never able to see him.

“Her one wish was to be able to see her grandson. It was only through an operation that she had the opportunity to restore her sight. But, a cataract operation costs nearly 30,000 Filipino pesos, equivalent to more than NT$20,000, how can a poor family find such money? She had the opportunity through a large-scale free clinic to have an operation which restored her sight; she went home, with her daughter-in-law at her side, and was able to see how she looks like. She was very familiar with the sound of her grandson and now she could see him with her own eyes. It was the greatest joy for all the family.”

There is another case in Indonesia where the TIMA members cured. There was a woman named Su Warish who lives in west Java; she relied on begging to make a living and carried on her back a tumor weighing 13.5 kilograms. It was like carrying a sack of rice on her shoulders. The TIMA doctors excised the tumor and gave her a new and radiant life.

“You transform the lives of people. Everyone works as a team, willing to go to any country and provide unconditional love, without asking for anything in return. This is the principle of the Tzu Chi International Medical Association. Each year, during the Autumn Festival, my heart is full of gratitude, when you all return to your spiritual home in Hualien.”

The 2014 TIMA Conference began on September 7 and is being held for four days in the Jing Si Hall and Jing Si Abode in Hualien. This year the volunteers of Taichung are responsible for the conference and have mobilized nearly 500 people – a ratio of almost one to one. Master Cheng Yen thanked volunteers from Taichung and Hualien for organizing this conference successfully. At the same time, she said that what is most precious in life is real friendship between people. Gathering so many bodhisattvas around the world together is like the gather the hearts of buddas and bodhisattvas. It is not an easy matter.

To show their respect and welcome for reach of the TIMA volunteers who have come from abroad, staff and volunteers from each Tzu Chi Hospital has prepared a hand-made snacks and delicious food for them to enjoy.

September 7 is the first day of classes, which will include sharing the experiences of the gas explosions in Kaohsiung and the relief to the victims of Typhoon Haiyan, with exchanges in different fields. Today it is the opportunity for people to speak of medical humanism and the program of silent mentors; there is also a visit to Jing Si Abode.

Finally, Master Cheng Yen thanked everyone for their service and reminded them to seize the moment and harness the power of love.

Speech of Master Cheng Yen at the Volunteers’ Meeting September 8, 2014


" When we treat others with loving-kindness, we will not stir up ill feelings, and we will be able to form good relationships with others. "
Jing-Si Aphorism

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