December 2, 1973 (Sunday evening)

On Finding Ways to Help Buddhism Spread and Prosper

Ven. Master Hsuan Hua


Every Friday we are going to hold a meeting to investigate and discuss true principle. Everyone is welcome to take part and bring up questions for people to investigate. You should not regard this as an ordinary event. In the future if this is done on a large scale, people of all religions can get together to investigate how to help the world, how to spread Buddhism throughout the world, and various other questions.

So, from now on, every Friday we will hold this meeting from 12:30-2:30 . During the meeting, everyone should express his or her opinions so we can look into them together. You shouldn’t wait for one certain individual to bring up questions for discussion. Everyone has a share in this. It will be an excellent opportunity for you to express your wisdom. Each one of us should reflect, “How can I be a true Bodhisattva and a vigorous cultivator?” We shouldn’t let the days pass in vain, eating our one meal a day, sleeping every night, and translating sutras or listening to explanations of the sutras every day as part of the daily routine. There’s not much point in passing our lives that way. We must make new progress. “Since I’m a Buddhist disciple, I must do something to help Buddhism expand and grow. Otherwise, how can I face up to the Buddhas of the ten directions and in the three periods of time?” We should constantly be thinking about how we can propagate Buddhism and make it prosper.

Also, we should all make vows. Guo Mo made a vow not to talk. We should all make vows not to let it rain or snow within a ten-mile radius of the monks doing Three Steps One Bow. They cover a distance of five miles each day, so a ten-mile radius should be sufficient. Everyone should make this vow because that’s the way it must be; it cannot be any other way. It is similar to how earthquakes are not permitted to occur. When we bow to the Buddhas or recite the Buddha’s name, we can dedicate the merit so that the gods, dragons, and the rest of the eightfold division of ghosts and spirits will not allow it to rain or snow within ten miles of the bowing monks, because they are already undergoing too much suffering

Timely Teachings, page 392 - 393