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!


Recruitment: Buddhist College of Singapore Lecturer

nThe Buddhist College of Singapore is looking for lecturers to teach “Buddhism and Social Work” and “Buddhist Esoteric Teachings”.

Buddhism and Social Work

(2 Sep 2013 – 17 Jan 2014)

  • MA / MPhil / PhD in relevant discipline
  • Minimum 2 years’ teaching experience
  • Able to teach in Mandarin

Job Scope

  • Conduct consultation hours at 2 hours per week where necessary
  • Evaluate students’ performance based on tests, assignments, exams etc.
  • Set and mark assignments and exam papers
  • Invigilation duties

Interested applicants please send your resume to hrdept@kmspks.org


*   佛教与社群工作(2013年9月2日至2014年1月17日)



有兴趣申请者请将个人简历及所要求的每小时授课费电邮至 hrdept@kmspks.org

Course Description
A study of the concept of social work in Buddhism, the teachings of social development and the ways to develop societies, integrating the concept of modern social worker to search for the ways of social development, social justice and the quality of life.


Buddhist Esoteric Teachings

(10 Mar 2014 – 25 Jul 2014)

  • MA / MPhil / PhD in relevant discipline, specializing in Tibetan Buddhism
  • Minimum 2 years’ teaching experience
  • Able to teach in Mandarin

Job Scope

  • Conduct consultation hours at 2 hours per week where necessary
  • Evaluate students’ performance based on tests, assignments, exams etc.
  • Set and mark assignments and exam papers
  • Invigilation duties

Interested applicants please send your resume to hrdept@kmspks.org<mailto:hrdept@kmspks.org>.


*   佛教密宗教义(2014年3月10日至2014年7月25日)




Course Description
To analyse the origin and development of Buddhist esoteric doctrines. The coverage includes India, the Tang Dynasty, and Tibet.



Buddhist Centres and Monasteries Around Singapore!

A 30,000 feet view of Singapore with Buddhist centres and monasteries listed!

This map was created under Singapore Buddhist Federation by the Web team in KMSPKS

The inSync project will link up our friends and family with Dharma activities nearest to them, keeping them inSync with the Dharma! 🙂

Keep a look out for it!




Island-wide Dharma Activities!


Hey everyone, this year at Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery, as part of the annual Vesak celebration, there will be a special video showcasing the various activities in KMSPKS and … wait for it … the activities of various Buddhist temples, monasteries and centres from across the island!

You see, when hundreds and thousands of Buddhists come to KMSPKS to participate in the annual Vesak celebration such as the Buddha-Bathing practice, Three-Step-One-Bow practice, Dharma talks etc, many come from all over the island.

While many may stay near to KMSPKS, many others may stay relatively far from the monastery.  Instead of just sharing the Dharma activities found in KMSPKS, we thought, why not share with everyone the exciting lineup of Dharma activities found throughout the island?

This way, my friend, we hope to link you up with the Dharma activities nearest to your home, so that everyone may be able to learn and practise the Dharma wherever we are!

Send me a message today for more information on this special project and more!

Coming Soon

Do You Know About the Singapore Buddhist Federation?

Do you know about the Singapore Buddhist Federation?  Below is some excerpt from the SBF web site followed by what I think it means for you and mean.

The Singapore Buddhist Federation has as its objectives (from its website):

  • To unify all Buddhist institutions and Buddhists in Singapore.
  • To observe Buddhist precepts, to practise Buddhism and to propagate Dharma.
  • To promote culture, education and social welfare.

Singapore Buddhist Federation(SBF) was initiated and formed by the chinese community of Buddhist in 1948.It is the parent body of Singapore Buddhist organisations and followers.

As the umbrella body for Buddhist organisations throughout Singapore, it serves to unify and support its member organisations. Read More …

Divinity Lots or ‘Fortune’ Lots 簽


Someone recently asked me about divinity lots found in KMSPKS:

Dear Venerable, I have a question about the divine sticks (qiu qian) at the old hall at Kong Meng San. Devotees will beg for divine advice from the three Buddhas and a piece of paper can be collected outside. Who are we communicating with? The message could sometimes be very clear, but some people will say that it is not Buddhism and mere superstition. I remember a story about Lord Buddha putting His bowl on the river; if the river flows upstream, he will strive to gain Enlightenment. So is this divine advice real? How do we make it real?

Here’s my short reply:

There is this belief that the Bodhisattvas or Dharma guardian help give guidance on worldly matters.  Having some help in this way can be similar to asking an experienced friend or mentor for guidance, it can certainly be helpful.

Having said that, the Dharma (teachings) ultimately help us transcend the worldly gains and loss, such that we can still be happy amidst life’s greatest difficulties or trivial nuances.

Sui hontu! ^_^


To add to that, if a Buddhist learn this or go to the temple for this and only this purpose, then it would be a great loss for him!  The real treasure in Buddhism lies in the Dharma (teachings) taught by the Buddha and the efficacy of the teachings in liberating us from our habitual tendencies and fed-ups in life.

Give a man a fish or some fried beehoon, and you feed him for a day or at least a meal.

Give the man a rod, … erm, better not, less he start fishing and killing fishes.  Give the man or woman for that matter, some help to find a job through http://www.mom.gov.sg/profile-
 or upgrade their skills via http://www.mom.gov.sg/skills-training-and-development/Pages/default.aspx and he can secure a stable livelihood for awhile until the next recession.  Rinse.  Repeat.

Give the person Buddha Dharma, and he can develop inner peace and happiness even when hungry.  With this inner peace and happiness, he can look for a job happily and not be grumpy and bitter.  And when he finds a job, he is full of energy (viriya!) and vitality (indriya?) to fulfill and exceed what is expected of him!  He earns his keep rightfully, without harming himself or others.  He enjoys the fruits of his labour with his friends and family with open handed generosity, and sets aside a portion of his earnings for savings (rainy days), to support his parents, give to the charity and support Dharma work.

While he live as a lay person, he continues his study and practice of the Dharma under the guidance and mentor of the Maha Sangha.  He lives his life not just devoted to his own pleasure but also for the benefit and welfare of others.  If he do not attain to the very least certainty of Dharma (sotapanna), he has sown the seeds for further learning and progress.  Living a life that incline towards goodness, the Buddha declares that the rebirth will be good, will be pleasant and happy.


Here’s my reply to facebook comments on cultural practices in Buddhist temples and monasteries:

Aircons are also not Buddhist practices, but most would quite readily use it to cool us down. 

If the Master WuFong had stopped my Ah Ma from burning joss paper and other cultural practices, she may have went to some other non-buddhist temple to pray. Today, it may well be Priest Chuan Guan telling you about something else.

Dance and hiphop are also not Buddhist practices, but yet the younger generation Buddhists are very willing to use these as skillful means to appeal to the youths. Perhaps we have to bear in mind that different people of different generations have very different needs to fulfill before they may be ready to learn Dharma.