Sunflower

The 5th Sunflower Program

Update: 19/08/2014
The 5th Sunflower Program on the theme “The Sacred Call” telling about the road to find out about Dharma by Buddhist Lawyer Le Thanh Son, director of the law office named AIC Lawyers & Consultants, was organised on 19 August, 2014 (24 July of the Horse, lunar calendar) within the framework of the 77th one-day retreat did bring much deep experience to the Buddhist participants.
 

The 5th Sunflower Program

 
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 Although having spent much time on his study tour in\r\nthe USA and reaped good achievements as well as being awarded the Honoured\r\nCitizen Certificate of merit of the USA by U.S. Vice-President, lawyer Son was\r\ndetermined to return to his fatherland so as to make his valuable contributions\r\nto his native country and looked for his spiritual origin as well.

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 During the time practising as a lawyer, Buddhist Thanh\r\nSon faced various situations and human conditions. In front of the social\r\nreality and the dark side of life, he felt discouraged and disappointed, and\r\nlost more and more his confidence in life. Thenceforward,  he went on\r\nlooking for a spiritual faith. Being an atheism follower, he began putting his\r\nconfidence in religion. Though spending some time learning about a number of\r\ndifferent religions, he finally concluded that these philosophies did not\r\nrespond to his queries and his totally appropriate thoughts. Then as a light at\r\nthe end of a tunnel, the lawyer, by chance, listened to a record\r\nabout Buddhist dharma and found out the psychic origin of his nation. He\r\naccordingly decided to return to Buddhism as the legitimate road of his\r\nlong and difficult quest. He began paying attention to his studies about\r\nBuddhism.

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 Coming to this religion, Buddhism, with a look from a\r\nsocial scientist who can be persuaded only when the arguments and therories\r\nagree to science and deal with the sole preoccupation social realities and\r\nqueries which he himself has previously set up. After having researched and\r\nstudied the dharma talks by Buddhist lecturers, he figured out many\r\nproblems as well as the unanswered queries posed to him previously. His way of\r\nlife as well as his thoughts have been changed ever since. The bright road\r\nseemed to open to him ahead.

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 After some time of researching Buddhism, a casual\r\nconnection suddenly helped the lawyer discover and come to a pagoda belonging\r\nto both villages named Kinh and An Lac, of Ha Nam province. Here, he made an\r\noffering with pious intent to rebuild this Three-Jewels place. This pagoda had\r\nbeen abandoned for a long time and the local citizens had\r\nnot had any chance to learn about Dharma, and going through the mill of\r\nhardships, the lawyer ultimately succeeded in creating a faith for the local\r\npeople. He also politely invited Buddhist monks and nuns, formed a\r\nBodhi-mandala and encouraged the local people to come to the pagoda for\r\npractising their religious self-improvements.

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 Thanh Son lawyer has applied Buddha’s teachings to his\r\nreal life and his daily work. On behalf of a lawyer, he has always tried his\r\nbest to defend the good and stayed away from the evil. He has also annihilated\r\nthe conflicts in his clients’ families to bring happiness to them. He has used\r\nhis personal ethics to raise his profession to a higher, more meaningful and\r\nbetter level. Besides, he has also used his gained knowledge to defend and propagate Dharma.\r\nHis lifestyle and practice have impacted his family, friends as well as the\r\npeople living around him  -  making these people direct themselves to\r\nthe good. Since he studied Buddhism, his life has turned to a new direction,\r\nalways found his self-belief, being optimistic and love of life.

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 Witnessing and participating in the 5th Sunflower\r\nProgram, Senior Ven. Thich Chan Tinh, abbot of Hoang Phap Pagoda and Head of\r\nthe organisation board of the retreat, made some comments to the attendees.\r\nBuddhism is the psychic origin of the nation of Vietnam. This religion,\r\nBuddhism, has been present in Vietnam for almost 2,000 years and there was a\r\ntime when it was considered the national religion  -  from the kings\r\ndown to the common people were imbued with the Dharma and lived by the Buddha’s\r\nteachings. Whenever Buddhism was developed, Vietnam was developed and became\r\nthe stablest country, too. Unfortunately, through time the psychic origin has\r\nbecome shaky; that means Buddhism has gradually become a hybrid and this has\r\ncaused the loss of its inherent lofty and beautiful values and this also caused\r\nlearned people to turn their back on this religion.

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 The mission of Buddhists is to successfully build a\r\npsychic pagoda in their own heart in such a way that everybody understands\r\nDharma and can apply it in their real life. The pagoda must not only be a\r\nplace for them to worship and say their prayers but also a place to study\r\nDharma together. A Buddhist must be a person who propagates the correct Dharma.\r\nLawyer Thanh Son is the one who has a lot of good origin; therefore, he has\r\nreceived the truth and was able to return to the Dharma and that is a really good\r\nluck.

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 Coming to Buddhism means coming to intelligence\r\nbecause Buddhist’s stable faith should rely on intelligence from audiovisual,\r\nthoughtful and self-improvement abilities. All of us should turn ourselves to\r\nour psychic origin and the local authorities should build a psychic pagoda\r\nwhere local people can rely on.

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 The Senior Venerable also reminded the\r\nattendees of lawyer Thanh Son’s recommendations which are as follows: all those\r\nwho participated in this 77th retreat had a great chance to study Dharma and\r\ntogether shared their self-improvement as well. Each of them should, therefore,\r\nbe more diligent in full command of their faculties so as to build for\r\nthemselves a firm psychic pagoda and used whatever they have understood to\r\ndirect other people and only in such a way that Buddhism canremain\r\neverlasting and developing.

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 The program ended in the attendees’ joyfulness.-

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Below are some recorded photos. \r\n\r\n

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Translated into English by Hoang Huan, layman.

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