Friday, April 1, 2016

Buddhist Temples in Chinatown

I had talked to someone and they said that we should really start a Buddhist Temple in Bostn. Just a room with some statues... something, because it was ridculous that Chinatown didn't have one. You know this could be something that the incoming huge Condos might be able to do. I mean a lot of the people moving into those huge buildings might like a nice meditation room with a nice statue or wall hanging of Guan Yin simply for aesthetic purposes. Plus it makes you look good for providing something to the community that didn't exist.

But Chinatown is full of altars. Every business has one, usually to Kwan Gung.

You could say, oh but that is only for Their business. Yes that's true. But let me give you an example. At our Kung Fu school he had a prominent altar to Gwan Gung. It was a painting. And let me tell you that a painting (or actually a commercial poster, a print. Cheap) is a lot  cheaper than a statue. But itwas maintained in the traditional way, by my Sifu and Jing. I say this because that is not how I would maintain an altar because I have a different view point. But to some people it might be important that Ling Hei and certain rules and protocol are followed. In any case, some students asked for Buddhist prayer beads to be blessed. Sifu put them on the altar for a time (it wasn't just Kwan Gung up there but Shaolin Temple as well. It was signified by calligraphy. A poem which does not directly relate to White Crane so much as the straight Shaolin and then Hung Gar lineage. Sifu chose this for the Federation even though we are also bowing to people outside of our lineage because we have the same origin and it wasn't just about us, it was about unity. We still maintain this altar.. I say "we"  but I mean Jing. Like I said, I don't want the responsibility of the strict protocol of a traditional altar. I would only take up such a thing if nobody else qualified was doing it... and then I would have to ask for help.

But moving on, there when people coming in for treatment not only bowed regular before our altar of Gwan Gung, but dropped to their knees and Kowtowed. Now, you can criticize this and say it is for show or whatever. The point is, there is no temple, so often times the Kung Fu schools, a secular continuation of the Shaolin Temple Tradition also fill that void. We do meditation... but we don't have prayers nor do we tell people what to think necessarily, especially about the after life, nor do we really talk about spirituality with outsiders much and usually it is just a discussion among ourselves... but some students join looking for this aspect. Maybe it would be nice to have some sort of Temple...

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