- The founders of this great country who created a system that is the model of the world, enabling the cream to rise to the top. I’m particularly thankful for the separation of the Church and State doctrine. This allows us to engage in spiritual pursuits with minimal interference from the State. For that, this humble monk and his followers will do our best not abuse the system, especially its tax code, by not encouraging improper or illegal tax deductions. In fact, we encourage our followers to pay their taxes and discourage them from tax evasion, which is an infraction of our Buddhist morality code. To repay the national founders’ kindness, we vow to strive to build on the system and refrain from damaging or destructive practices.
- The people of this nation who most generously extended a lending help to this ignorant foreign student and repeatedly overlooked his many blunders. I am very grateful to the many individuals such as our troops, whom I’ve never met who made untold personal sacrifices so that I can enjoy my many liberties and privileges. I have had the opportunity to meet with people from upper to lower strata: I’m most impressed with the goodness and kindness in their hearts. For that, we try to share our understanding and knowledge for the betterment of the people’s lives. Our students are gradually discovering more effective alternative approaches to their problems/illnesses. Cultivation improves their lives and brings peace, bliss and joy to their lives and loved ones’.
- My magnanimous teachers, Ven. Xuan Huà of the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas and Ven. Mãn Giác of Viet-Nam temple, I cannot fully express my profound gratitude. As I am beginning to accept disciples, I now realize that it’s a thankless task. They both have left our world. I would have given up the world to spend more time to learn from them. I deeply regret not having enough blessings to draw near them longer.
When Shakyamuni Buddha announced to his disciples that he was about to enter Nirvana, his disciples came from far away places to pay their last respects. Throngs hustled for a time slot to say their personal good-bye’s to the World-Honored-One. However, amongst the Buddha’s resident disciples, there was a monk who made no such attempt. Instead, he would shut himself in his room away from all the commotion. His colleagues wasted no time in bringing the matter up to Shakyamuni and entreated the Baghavan to punish him. He was therefore called to the Buddha’s room to explain his behavior. He said: “World-Honored-One, since you don’t have much time left with us, I thought that the best way to express my gratitude is to meditate and work hard at my cultivation. I hope to realize Arhatship before you leave so that you won’t feel that you’ve wasted your time teaching me.” The Buddha beamed and proclaimed: “He who loves me most, most vigorously puts my teachings into practice”.
I vow to try harder to live up to the standards set by my teachers. I beseech them to be patient with my repeated failures in such endeavors.