Years ago when I was searching for a path I picked up a small book on Buddhism and remember thinking ‘wow, I’ve always thought this’ & ‘this makes perfect sense’. From there I started reading your books, which further deepened my interest in the Dharma. Then I found out you would be giving a public talk soon, but it was sold out by the time I had found out. Well, I drove up to UCLA anyways. When I arrived, I happened to find a man outside selling a single ticket at face value. An auspicious sign if I may say so.
When I tell friends of this day, the only way I know how to express it was that I could literally ‘feel’ you walk into the room. And even though I was way up in the back of the audience, it was as if you and I were alone and you were speaking directly to me. This changed my life. I went home that evening, shaved my head, and knew I was to set foot on the Buddhist path.
Soon after, I took refuge and accepted the 5 Precepts under Venerable Master Hsing Yun of the Fo Guang Shan order. There is a wonderful picture of you and my Master in one of the offices at Hsi Lai Temple that I enjoy seeing any chance I get.
I have been fortunate enough to have found my way to the Dharma, and am thankful to you for being a big part of that.
May the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas in all directions continue to shine their light upon you.
…joining palms, bowing head to floor.