April 01, 2011
Earlier this week, some Tricyclers were lucky enough to make it up to Carmel, New York in order to visit with Bhikkhu Bodhi at Chuang Yen Monastery. Chuang Yen is a Chinese Chán monastery, and my colleague Monty was immediately moved by the fact that Bhikkhu Bodhi, a Theravada Monk, takes residence there, saying, "At the end of the day Buddhists truly are one big family."
Between the weather and the conversation, it was an illuminating afternoon all the way around. We talked about Bhikkhu Bodhi's translation work, whether it's ever OK to lie, and about the construction of the largest Buddha statue in North America (see below). Mostly, however, we talked about the work of Buddhist Global Relief, Bhikkhu Bodhi's inter-denominational Buddhist organization dedicated to alleviating social and economic suffering worldwide. BGR does a lot of truly inspiring work, by providing funds for organizations that already exist on the ground, to fight hunger, empower girls, and provide education for children most in need.
Below are some photographs of our trip. Enjoy!
Chuang Yen's grounds
The largest Buddha statue in North America
A handful of the 10,000 Buddhas surrounding the large Buddha
Some fish we saw