Do Good Deeds, Speak Good Words and Think Good Thoughts at the Chu Un Buddhist Temple
The innate religiosity of Cebuanos is evident in the number of churches dotting the Queen City of the South. But, this piety is not limited to the religion brought into the archipelago by the Spaniards. When the Chinese settled in the Parian area before the coming of the Spaniards, they brought with them their merchandise for trade, food and culture.
While many of these settlers converted to Christianity when the Philippines was colonized by Spain, a number still stayed true to their roots and practiced their native religion. This is demonstrated by the number of Chinese temples around the city. One notable Chinese temple in Cebu is the Chu Un Buddhist Temple, which is nestled on the hills along V. Rama Avenue.
The Chu Un Buddhist Temple was established in 1988 through the efforts of Paterno and Rosita Luym. The temple was built in memory of the mother of Paterno, who was a devout Buddhist. The couple travelled to Kaoshiung, Taiwan to seek assistance from the monastics of Fo Guang Shan to run the temple in Cebu. This was facilitated by Mrs. Xia Su Ying, a good friend of the couple living in Taiwan. Fo Guang Shan is an international Chinese Buddhist religious movement based in Taiwan. The literal meaning of the name Fo Guang Shan is “Buddha’s Light Mountain.” On the other hand, Chu Un essentially means gratitude and compassion. When the temple was completed on September 1, 1990, the late Head Abbot Venerable Hsin Peng along with some disciples performed a purification ceremony of the shrine.
The complex has three main buildings sitting on the top of the hill of the 1.8 hectare piece of land. These buildings are the Guan Yin Shrine, the Di Zhang Shrine and the Bamboo Garden Dining Hall. A small farm was set up at the back of the dining hall where vegetables, coconuts and bananas are grown.
The Chu Un Buddhist Temple is just among the many branches of Fo Guang Shan around the world. Aside from a place of worship, the temple is also a place where Cebuanos can learn more about Buddhism. It promotes the Three Acts of Goodness, namely: Do Good Deeds, Speak Good Words and Think Good Thoughts. In addition, the temple also advocates harmony of self, harmony to others, harmony to the family, harmony to the society, and harmony to the world.
The Chu Un Buddhist Temple also practices what it preaches since it conducts dental and medical missions as well as give out gift packs to its neighbors during the Christmas season. The temple is also open for visitors who want to join meditation sessions every Thursday evening from 7:30 PM to 9:30 PM. The Fo Guang Shan Chu Un Buddhist Temple was also one of the participants of the annual Gabii Sa Kabilin last May 27, 2016.
Have you visited the Fo Guang Shan Chu Un Buddhist Temple already? Tell us about your experience on the comments section below.
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