Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation

Jan 20th
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Home Our Founder The Mentor of Master Cheng Yen In Memory of My Master, a Mentor for All Buddhists - Perpetual peace of mind

In Memory of My Master, a Mentor for All Buddhists - Perpetual peace of mind

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In Memory of My Master, a Mentor for All Buddhists
Encountering my master
A moment of eternity
Perpetual peace of mind
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Perpetual peace of mind
The Mentor always seemed to live in a state of tranquility and joyfulness. He never let his physical discomfort show, and he always wore a smile. He smiled for his doctors, regardless of whether they were speaking to him of his medical condition or the weather outside. He smiled for the nurses as they attended to their duties. Although he slept more and more as time went by, he fell asleep with a smile and woke up with one too. Even though his eyes were closed most of the time in the ICU, he still could sense when people approached him, and he greeted them with a smile. Just picture how joyous, serene, and carefree his mind was.

After a lifetime of diligent and serene spiritual cultivation, the Mentor calmly and peacefully left the world. The Buddha came to this world and entered nirvana at the age of 80; the Mentor passed away at the age of 100. To live so long is truly rare. Although we are very sad at his passing, we must be very grateful. How blessed we are to have been able to live at the same time as the Mentor.

I escorted his body from Hualien to Hsinchu. It was the first time I had accompanied him from eastern Taiwan to the west, and it would be the last. We often travel far and wide in our lives, but in the end we always come back to where we begin. The Mentor returned to Fu Yan Abode, the first institute he founded for promoting the Buddha's teachings in Taiwan. I had mixed feelings in my heart as I accompanied him home for the last time.

I am grateful to the medical team of Hualien Tzu Chi Hospital for taking care of the Mentor respectfully and mindfully, day and night. Because of the team's hard work, I was able to focus on the Tzu Chi missions without worrying about the Mentor's illness. I am very grateful to the Tzu Chi members in Taiwan for assisting with the funeral. I am also very thankful to all the members of Tzu Chi around the world. With their cooperation, they were able to conduct memorial services to pay their last respects to the Mentor on the same day we paid our respects in Taiwan.

After the Mentor passed away, we changed his clothes. Though I tried to lay his hands across his stomach, one on top of the other, his right hand kept sliding down to his side. Suddenly, I was struck by the significance of this position! It was the same position as that of the Buddha sprinkling the world--with one hand holding a bowl of water and the other cleansing the earth.

This was the last wordless lesson that the Mentor gave me. I know that my master, a Mentor for all Buddhists, will return to this world again. He has vowed to redeem people from the suffering of the world.

I am forever grateful to the Mentor for illuminating the path of Right Thought. He rectified many misleading concepts about the Buddha's teachings by promoting a humanized understanding of Buddhism. His teachings have truly benefited the world. Humanized Buddhism must be passed on from one generation to the next. Let's pray with our utmost sincerity that the Mentor's wisdom can continue to exist in the world forever.