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November 21, 2019
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Wishing you all a very Happy New Year!

Our life as a human being is very precious. Compared to all other beings in the different realms of existence, we have the unique opportunity to develop our minds and gain total liberation. The human lifespan enables us to enjoy the worldly pleasures of life and also to experience the various manifestations of sufferings, which can act as a stimulus for us to seek true peace and happiness by reducing and overcoming the tendencies of greed, hatred and delusion – the root cause of all our sufferings.

At New Year we always pray for longevity, happiness and prosperity. Longevity provides us with greater opportunity to fulfill our worldly duties and responsibilities. It also provides greater opportunity for us to see the true nature of life. With each passing year, we see our children growing up, and we wish for them to have a bright future. At the same time, we see our elders aging, and we wish that they remain healthy and free from pain and sickness for as long as possible. While we reflect on all the good things that we have done over the past year, we also see that they are impermanent and that we cannot avoid facing difficulties from time to time.

If we see this and truly reflect on the impermanent and unsatisfactory nature of life, this will prompt us to aspire for something higher, to gain liberation from the cycle of samsara, not only for our own happiness but also for the benefit of others. Therein lies the true purpose of the long life we wish for.

Disasters and calamities around the world, both natural and man-made, serve as a lesson in impermanence for us to wake up to the realities of life. There is nothing in this world that we can grasp or cling on to as “I” or “mine”. While we use these words in the conventional world, our knowledge and understanding of the Dhamma will naturally lead us to realise the ultimate reality of things around us. It is the understanding of the true nature of life – the knowledge that enables us to go beyond “I”, “my”,”me”, and “mine” – that constitutes wisdom. As the years go by, we need to grow in wisdom and realise the true meaning of life.

I truly rejoice with all those who have supported BMSM and all its related activities over the past year, key among which is the development of Pusat Buddhis Dhammaduta Malaysia (PBDM). Many have generously contributed towards PBDM, which is now in a practical completion stage. While the physical structure is ready, the building still needs to be furnished and your continued support and assistance will be greatly appreciated.

In the coming year there will be several special events, particularly at PBDM starting off with an all-night chanting for the first time in our all new BMSM National HQ on 20-21 June 2020.

The 5th Metta Convention is planned for 13 to 15 November 2020 in Nagpur, India.

As a follow up to the 4th Metta Convention held last year at Putrajaya, a project called Metta For Life was initiated by a group of volunteers to promote Dhamma amongst children, young adults as well as elders. This has resulted in the establishment of Metta House Day Care Centre in Setia Alam, Selangor. This after-school Day Care Centre is aimed at nurturing happy, caring children through imparting Dhamma values in the 7-12 year olds. For young adults/youth group, a two-day Metta Youth Living Skills Workshop covering Personality, Leadership, Relationship & Stress Management is planned for June 2020. Please give your support in whatever way you can for the success of this new Dhammaduta initiative that will pave the way for the young ones to have a good start in walking the Dhamma’s path.

I urge you all to take this opportunity to make a connection in whatever way you can with these planned activities to promote peace and happiness for the benefit of all beings. I would also encourage all put in the time and effort to cultivate our own minds, through retreats and own practice, for one’s own benefit as well as for the benefit of others.

May the blessings of the Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha be with you always.

With Metta,
Venerable Mahinda
General Advisor, BMSM