8 Precepts Urban Retreat May 2015

8 Precepts Urban Retreat

Join us for a weekend getaway from the hustle and bustle of city life and find inner peace through the practice of mindfulness.

  • 8 May (Fri)
    Check-in | 7.30pm | Stay-in participants only
  • 9 May(Sat) One Day Retreat
    Retreat begins | Stay-out participants are to report by 7.30am
  • 10 May (Sun)
    Check-out | 10am | Stay-in participants only.

Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery

For more information, please visit

Vesak 3-steps-1-bow Practice 31 May 2015

The annual 3-steps-1-bow practice on the eve of vesak is once again upon us.  This year, it will be conducted on 31 May 2015, with 20k ~ 30k Buddhists participating in the 2.5 hours long round-the-monastery spiritual practice.

Yearly, Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery also issue free queue tickets for participants so that the monastery is able to cater to everyone’s participation from 6pm to 7am in the morning.

This year’s ticket for the practice will be issued on Sunday 24 May 2015 at 9am.

Those without the ticket may join the open queue which usually starts around 10+pm.


What is this 3-steps-1-bow practice about?

The practice itself involves doing a prostration followed by taking 3 steps.  This completes a set.  Together with thousands of fellow participants, one perform each set mindfully, in unison with each other and in line with the inspiring background chant of the verse “Namo benshi shijiamunifo” 南無本師釋迦牟尼佛.

The verse itself means

南無 Homage, Refuge 本師 to our root teacher 釋迦牟尼 the enlightened sage of the Sakya clan, 佛 the Buddha

In our life, we have many responsibilities, duties and pursuits.  While they may appear trivial to others, they are important to us.  Let us not ignore or deny that.  But for 2.5 hours, during this practice, we learn to put all these aside, both the trivial and important.  Not to escape, but to devote some time inwards.  To be mindful inwards, towards our body, speech and mind.

We put aside our daily pursuit for self-gratification, running after pleasure and away from discomfort.  We observe and learn about our body and mind, our strengths and our limits.  Ah, how the body can give rise to pleasure, but under the right conditions, it can also give rise to a spectrum of different experiences such as aches, soreness and pain.  We learn to face and embrace the body the way it is.

We also learn to see how our mind is stronger than we think we are.  We have more resilience than we realise.  That the mind can indeed triumph the body.

It is not the most relaxing or easy thing to do, to be honest.  But we learn to see how we do not always need the air-con to cool our mind.  That even as we perspire and experience heat and fatigue in the body, we can be tranquil in our mind.  As the Chan Buddhist saying goes “心静自然凉” “One is cool when the mind is quiet (and calm)”.

Mindfully, we take each step.  Mindfully, we prostrate.  Sincerely we purify our body, speech and mind.

Join us for this year’s 3-step-1-bow this year.  Let’s start the journey.  The way to Buddhahood is going to be tough, strenuous and arduous.  But it would be all worth the while.  And when you look around, fellow Bodhisattvas are there, with us along the way.

See you then!

Heart Sutra workshop 2015 @ KMSPKS

Heart Sutra workshop @ Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery

Conducted in Mandarin
(an English Heart Sutra class will be conducted in Aug / Sep onwards. )
Starting 3 May 2015 – 17 July 2015 (10 lessons)

What is the meaning of the Heart Sutra?  The shortest sutra at 260 characters, is also the most commonly recited sutra in Chinese Mahayana Buddhism.

What lies within this Sutra?  Emptiness … does it mean nothingness?

Come, learn, share and discover together!

Monthly Lunch Gathering@2pm + Weekly Sunday Group Cultivation@2pm


1 Feb 2015: Lunch Gathering @ 12pm + Sunday Group Cultivation @ 2pm

The once-a-month lunch gathering is here again! Join us for a cozy lunch as we tuck into yummy food and share with fellow Dharma brothers and sisters.

What to Bring?

This month onwards, food will be provided and potluck offering is optional.  So go green and just bring your own utensils and cutleries!!

*BONUS* Vege Soup Recipe Below

If you wish, you can also bring some food or items to do offering to the presiding venerable.

Finger Food & Beverages List

1. Packet drinks
2. Bottled drinks
3. Chips, Ole etc
4. Fresh Fruits Platter
5. Choice of Finger Food
– Vege Nuggets, Vege Samosa
6. Choice of Vege Finger Sandwiches
– Vege Ham & Cheese, Vege Tuna Mayo, Tofu Mayo
7. French Fries, Potato Wedges
8. Spring Roll, Crispy Vege Ball,
9. Grilled Sausage with Hotdog Bun
10. Choice of Pizza – Vege anything … wink emoticon

Hot Favourites
1. Fried Bee Hoon
2. Fried Noodles
3. Laksa
4. Olive Fried Rice
5. Desserts

Surprise Items (If you bring it, then it’s not a surprise!)
1. Prata
2. Indian curry
3. Whatever vege stuffs you find in your kitchen!! grin emoticon

And if you cannot find anything, just bring yourself along with utensils and cutlery! wink emoticon

See you on Sunday @ 12pm for the potluck lunch offering! kiki emoticon


If you are up for the challenge, try this recipe I learnt from my monastery in US.

Difficulty Level: 6.5 / 10

Mixed Vege Soup
1. White Radish 白蘿蔔
2. Carrot 紅蘿蔔
3. Potato 馬鈴薯/土豆
4. Tomato 番茄/西紅柿
5. Big Chinese Cabbage 大白菜
6. Special item. Msg me for special item. 特別材料。電郵詢問。 tongue emoticon

1. Cut items 1 – 4 into large chunks.
2. Cut item 5 into bite-size pieces, smaller near the root, larger near the leave.

1. Boil pot of water with item 1, 2, 3.
2. Put half servings of tomato and sections of chinese cabbage nearer to root into pot to boil in step 1.
3. Boil for 30mins, then reduce to 34.5% heat. Just kidding, just lower the heat to medium.
3. Add remainder half of tomato and chinese cabbage.
4. Boil for another 20mins or until everything is nicely cooked.
5. Add salt and pepper for flavour.
5. Add special item.

Enjoy this wonderful home made soup!! kiki emoticon

Volunteers’ Appreciation Dinner 2014 – Some reflections for the evening

Got back from the retreat at noon, had a parents’ class, followed by children’s classes.  The day ended with the KMSPKS Volunteers’ Appreciation Dinner 2014! (Address by my shifu and my reflections down below)

The whole dinning hall on the 2nd floor of Venerable Hong Choon Memorial Hall is filled to the rim with volunteers tonight!


The night started with shifu’s address, emphasising on gratitude towards the volunteers’ contribution to the Buddhist community and the monastery.  He also highlighted how while lay buddhists come and volunteer, it is a form of giving (dana, 布施), and we should contribute happily.  And by happily, it means we must learn the Dharma (Buddha’s teachings) so that we can overcome our defilements (烦恼), which is the aim of Buddhism.

He then urge all to continue to serve the community and at the same time learn more of the Buddha Dharma, by attending the Dharma classes and talks, and concluded once again with much thanks and gratitude for the support and effort by the volunteers.


Performance by our monastery choir starting off the evening’s programme.  Feeling a crooning humming?  Come sign up with us http://youth.kmspks.org

Second performance by the lovely children from the Saturday Sunday School in KMSPKS ^.^

Our volunteer teacher instructor for their dance performance … wow!

More performances by our youths!!  woo hoo!! ^_^


And here comes the finale performances.

TIL* that instagram video capture requires you to press … AND HOLD!!  *face palm* myself. -.-“””

So the only video clip I took of the ACC performance during the KMSPKS Volunteers’ Appreciation Dinner was three short spurts … … o_O

TIL – Today I Learn

But what a night!  One thing that the students from ACC said about their choice of the song “龙的传人” touched me.  They heard that many Singaporean Chinese do not speak Mandarin, so they wanted to come here and share with us the Chinese song, to encourage us, that if they being Africans can sing the song “龙的传人” those “gan-dang” among us can also learn and appreciate Chinese language and culture.

Shifu used to be “gan-dang” too.  But after ordaining as a monk, I had to learn Chinese from scratch.  Sutras are in classical Chinese and all lessons were in Mandarin, taught by my late compassionate ordination teacher, Master Miu Jing.  Over the years, lugging around thick dictionaries (for Mandarin and Buddhist technical terms), and much much support and guidance from senior venerables, I’ve managed to shed my “gan-dang”ness to become more bi-lingual. ^_^ (y)

So, take up the challenge today!  Come learn Chinese, and unlock the marvel and wisdom within the Chinese culture and the Buddhist sutras (scriptures) translated by our lineage Masters!