The Third International Symposium on Guanyin Culture Breaks New Grounds Online, Allowing Positive Taiwan-Japan Exchanges to Transcend Space & Time

2021-12-07
The Third International Symposium on Guanyin Culture Breaks New Grounds Online, Allowing Positive Taiwan-Japan Exchanges to Transcend Space & Time
The idea that across space and time to meet Bodhisattva Guanyin was realized on December 7 by conferees of the third International Symposium on Guanyin Culture held simultaneously at the National Central Library in Taipei, Taiwan, and the Creston Hotel in Nagoya, Japan. Six speakers took turns from their respective locations to address Guanyin teachings and their significance which matured over time. The Symposium thus helps disseminate the spirit of Guanyin’s kindness and compassion across the cosmic universe, establishing new milestones for exchanges between Taiwan and Japan in religion, academics, and culture by and large.

Dharma Master Hsin Tao, Founding Abbot of Taiwan’s Ling Jiou Mountain Buddhist Society (LJM), graced the occasion with remarks for the opening ceremony of the Symposium, which was co-organized by the LJM World Avalokitesvara Assn and the Center for Chinese Studies of National Central Library in Taiwan while being implemented by the Shyushi Institute in Japan. The Master made reference to his childhood experience that tears would begin to stream down his cheeks whenever Guanyin’s name came up. Thus, the Master followed Guanyin each step along the way of inheriting the Dharma mission of promoting Buddha’s teaching to benefit sentient beings. Countries differ from one another, added Master Hsin Tao, even in the case of individual artistic representation of Guanyin’s image, but the spirit of the Bodhisattva’s compassion and benevolence remains the same wherever one goes. The power of faith is ever more important in the face of our endangered ecology further complicated by the pandemic. The Master looks forward to seeing joining forces in the resonance of love and compassion to come up with deliverable solutions to the Earth’s crises and achieve sustainability. The virtual conference was an easily accessible platform for netizens to approach Bodhisattva Guanyin for a better understanding of his teachings and hallmarks of great compassion. The belief that Bodhisattva Guanyin extends salvation to mitigate suffering in adversities moreover offers a soothing comfort to the public during times of the pandemic.

The Symposium turned out to be a program rich in content and diversified in subject matters. Featured speakers include Professor Tachikawa Musashi of Japan’s National Museum of Ethnology, LJM Dharma Research Fellow Yang Shih-Wei, Torayama Gishuh, who is the Deacon & Treasurer of Nanzenji Temple, Rinzai Sect Grand Head Temple, Professor Lee Chien-Lang from the Research Studio for Ancient Constructions & Relics in Taiwan, Professor Sakuma Ruriko from Osaka University of Tourism, and Danjoh Souken, Chief Priest of Mt. Manshouzan Saikouji Temple, Rinzai Sect Myoshinji School.

Among the audience for in-person attendance on-site in Taipei were Master Jing Yao, Chairperson of the Buddhist Association of China, Director General Tseng Shu-Hsien of National Central Library, Mme. Lin Hsueh-Hung of the Amala Association. Together with other dignitaries present on the occasion, they all testified to the spirit of compassion in that Bodhisattva Guanyin is indeed ubiquitous wherever there are people.

For the two panel discussions, the moderators were Dr. Zhou Xia of the Shyushi Institute in Japan and Chairperson Chen Guo-Ning of the LJM World Avalokitesvara Assn. Panellists include Master Sucho Takaoka, Abbot of Tokuroji Temple in Nagoya, Japan, Professor Li Chien-Lang, Professor Chen Ching-Hsiang of Chinese Culture University, Professor Huang Yun-Shi of Hsuan Chuang University , Professor Cheng Chi-Ming of Fu Jen Catholic University and Professor Yo Hsiang-Chou of the World Buddhist University offered their expert views on the topics. Their interactions with the moderators and their respective in-person audience on-site warranted good coverage of all designated topics.

Bodhisattva Guanyin has been forever the aspiring role model and motivation for Dharma Master Hsin Tao and the spiritual belief of LJM’s Four Buddhist groups of followers. The LJM World Avalokitesvara Assn was thus established and started the curation of the annual international symposium on Guanyin teachings in 2018 in an effort to carry on the torch for the Guanyin tradition of compassion that transcends time and space.

The Closing Ceremony saw Master Guang Chuen, the Instructor-in-residence of the LJM World Avalokitesvara Assn, and President Yamamoto of the Shyushi Institute represent Taiwan and Japan in their respective capacity and jointly announced that the fourth Symposium 2022 will be co-organized with the LJM University for Life & Peace to bundle spirituality with ecology in the hope of amassing more influencers to sustain the planet with love and compassion. Master Guang Chun shared some highlights of the upcoming Symposium 2022, and Confederation Chairperson Mme. Chen presented a citation to Professor Tsai Yao-Ching, Research Fellow of Taiwan’s National Museum of History, for his donation of four antique books from Japan. The Symposium thus concluded successfully.