Ling Jiou Mountain Cloud Concert on Mother's Day 2020 for Earth-Healing

Ling Jiou Mountain Cloud Concert on Mother's Day 2020 for Earth-Healing
The Sound of Peace concert to show gratitude to Mother Earth was moved online due to COVID-19. Livestreaming began at 9:30 AM Eastern Time in the US (9:30 PM in Taiwan) and the music served the purpose of soothing restlessness and anxiety triggered by the pandemic. Interfaith blessings were also offered by invited representatives of different religions and communities to pray for the Earth's peace and sustainability. The cloud concert was organized by the LJM Buddhist Society New York and others.

Amid climate change and COVID-19, the world has been battered by natural disasters and epidemic onslaught in recent history. The religion seems to be a best fit for the role of jolting an increasing number of people into an awareness of and action-taking for the Earth's plight. A model case in point is the LJM future University for Life & Peace in Myanmar as yet another long-term dedication of Dharma Master Hsin Tao as the LJM Founding Abbot. The University aims at integrating spirituality and technologies to heal the Earth, cultivate seeds of peace for global ecology, and create a fertile land where all sentient beings co-exist and thrive in a harmonious symbiosis.

Dharma Master Hsin Tao points to one of his key messages for the world that the LJM efforts center around ‘treating the environment with respect and positive solutions, treating lives with compassion and support, and ultimately contributing to the healing of Mother Earth.’ The Earth is our shared home and the base station of life itself. The Master calls out to leaders in religions, politics, businesses, and academics to co-operate and reduce harms inflicted upon the Earth, but more importantly, to unite in a collective effort to restore the ecology. ‘Let us calm down to tranquility for the heart to retrieve its initial purity and still. May all have peace at heart, and may peace be all.’

As part of the ‘Loving the Earth / Loving Peace’ series, the cloud concert was organized with the LJM Buddhist Society New York in the lead among initiatives such as the afore-mentioned future University for Life & Peace in Myanmar, the non-profit NGO ‘Global Family for Love & Peace’ (GFLP), the ‘Chan Space New York’, the ‘School for Strings’, etc. The effort was to once again awaken people and ignite spirituality and compassion for the Earth’s sustainability by virtue of a strengthened campaign of love and peace.

Master Xian Yue Shih, an LJM executive member in charge of the Religious Affairs Committee, pointed out that the cloud concert was the beginning of a series yet to come. It was meant to coincide with the World Earth Day 2020 on April 22 but did not materialize due to COVID-19. It was then moved online to keep up the spirit of the performers, with special allowance for the fact that rehearsals and practices would necessitate more time and the date was thus changed to Mother's Day to highlight our filial piety towards all mothers of the world on their special day, as well as to show gratitude to Mother Earth for the world's provisions and energies. Thus it renders itself clear what the concert was about - the soothing music calms people down for reflections on how best to heal the Earth while dedicating prayers for peace and health to all frontline people combating the pandemic.

The 30-plus-minutes concert began with a one-minute Peace meditation for a special prelude. Cello instructor of the School for Strings, Alex Croxton, then proceeded to conduct performances of Bach Suite no. 6 Sarabande and popular scores of ‘Here Comes the Sun’, ‘You Raise Me Up’, etc. by Marina Iwao on the piano and a band of 8 students of cello and violin. The pianist holds a master's degree from the Juilliard for piano.

The concert also saw its musical pieces interspersed with blessings by Dharma Master Hsin Tao and leaders of other faiths such as Christianity and Islam. A representative of the Japanese Shinnyo was among those who contributed to the online event by citing poetry of gratitude or saying prayers for blessings to elevate the overall ambiance to a higher plateau.

Towards the end and in wrapping up, Master Guang Guo Shih, an LJM executive in charge of the ‘Chan Space New York’, shared Dharma quotes by Dharma Master Hsin Tao in that ‘Recognizing that all beings are interdependent is a key to work on sustainability. It is our responsibility. We must keep “love Earth” in mind at all times. Promote it so our planet can be protected and sustained.’
Master Guang Guo Shih expressed happiness and thankfulness about the concert performance on the part of both the faculty and the students for their enthusiasm and all-out efforts.

The well-curated online concert turned out to be a hit with fans and the Internet communities, who enjoyed the live streaming from top to end and still wanted some more. Netizen Janis said she admired the noble intent and fruitful outcome of the event that said special prayers in musical notes to spread love and compassion on the Internet to transcend time and space. Netizen Amber pointed out that the cloud concert worked for her as the light at the other end of the tunnel, with still no certain end to the pandemic yet in sight, but the message brought along the light of hope and the warmth of compassion.

Link for the concert ►