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Buddhadharma : Winter 2006
buddhadharma| 87 |winter 2006 contents MahaSangha News winter 2006 M aster sheng Yen, founder of Dharma Drum Mountain (DDM), stepped down in September as its abbot-presi- dent. During a ceremony in Tai- wan, the 77-year-old Chan master named 51-year-old Venerable Guo Dong as his successor. DDM is an umbrella organization for a num- ber of activities, including educa- tion and culture, humanitarian work, social engagement, and the propagation of Chan Buddhism. On November 12, Master Sheng Yen presented the new abbot- president, who is charged with amalgamating and managing DDM’s operations, to his Ameri- can congregation at the Chan Meditation Center in Queens. When Buddhadharma asked Mas- ter Sheng Yen whether the change would allow him to spend more time in the U.S., he replied: “Because I am already 77 years old, my energy levels are not what they were before. I would like to be very direct and frank with you; I do not think I would spend more time in the States than I had in the past. Although I am retired, my workload did not decrease, and I continue to have many obliga- tions and responsibilities in man- agement and dharma propagation worldwide.” ■ Multi-instrumen- talist jazz musician Joseph JarMan gave a rare perfor- mance at the Ford Amphitheatre in Los Angeles on October 8 with Roscoe Mitchell. Jarman and Mitchell are founding members of the legendary jazz ensemble The Art Ensemble of Chicago, formed in 1969. Jarman’s interests in Eastern spirituality took him away from performance after 1993. He was ordained a Jodo Shinshu Buddhist priest in 1990 and holds a 5th-degree black belt in aikido. Jarman also founded the Jikishinkan Dojo and the Brooklyn Buddhist Association, both in New York City. Hundreds of fans celebrated his return to the stage. ■ This fall, 99-year-old Joshu sasaki roshi led a seven-day sesshin at Rinzai-ji Zen Center in Los Angeles. Health permitting, Joshu Roshi is still leading sesshin regularly at one of the several Rinzai temples he esta- blished in the U.S. The September sesshin at Rinzai-ji concluded on donfarberwilddonlewis.halfnormal.com/gallerya around the continent in 18 daYs H is holiness the dalai lama brought his message of compassion and peace to north america in sep- tember in a succession of talks, dialogues, and teaching engagements that spanned the continent over 18 days. from Vancouver to new york city, the tireless 71-year-old Tibetan spiritual leader addressed youth, scientists, leaders, and spiritual practitioners and received several honors and awards. at his first stop in Vancouver, he inaugurated the dalai lama center for Peace and education, a multi- purpose venue that will have meeting, lecture, and exhibition spaces, as well as a gallery, library, café, and bookstore. The center is scheduled for completion in 2009. sharing the stage with archbishop desmond Tutu and other nobel laureates during the 10th PeaceJam conference at the University of denver, the dalai lama told teens representing more than 30 countries that war is outdated. nearly 15,000 people attended a public talk in denver sponsored by the mind and life institute. at the state University of new york at buffalo (Ub), the dalai lama spoke with young lawyers about how religion, particularly buddhism, can influence law and social change. in washington, d.c ., the U.s . house of representatives passed a bill awarding the dalai lama the congressional gold medal, the country’s highest civilian honor, whose past recipients include Pope John Paul ii and nelson mandela. in Vancouver, the dalai lama was the third person in history to accept an honorary canadian citizenship. Ub awarded him an honorary doctorate in humane letters, and at shambhala mountain center in the colorado rockies, sakyong mipham rinpoche inaugurated the living Peace award, presenting it to the dalai lama for his contribution to world peace. The dalai lama also managed to deliver traditional buddhist teachings on his tour. in los angeles, he taught for two days on nagarjuna’s commentary on bodhicitta and conferred a Tara permission initiation. in new york, he taught on The Blade Wheel of Mind Transformation, a text by dharmarakshita. 88 / tiBetAn YoGA & cAncer ı 90 / profile: UU BUDDHists ı 94 / A Zen MYsterY ı 95 / DHArMA on tHe weB eDitor, AnDreA McqUillin People gathered to greet the Dalai Lama outside the Beacon Theater in New York.