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Resolving A "Burning" Issue

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  • NamoAmituofo
    ... For www.TheDailyEnlightenment.com ... Resolving A Burning Issue Question : According to Buddhist teachings, there is no need to burn joss paper for the
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 23, 2006
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      For www.TheDailyEnlightenment.com

      Resolving A "Burning" Issue



      Question : According to Buddhist teachings, there is no need to burn joss paper for the deceased. But Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery still allows people to do so. This will confuse many who do not have right views on this issue. While we know very well that this is not Buddhist teaching, on the other hand, we allow people to practise it. This is why many keep thinking this is Buddhist practice. 

      I myself am confused due to the contradiction of policy and practice. I have told others that it is not right, but when we see burning allowed at a Buddhist temple, it kind of shut me up. I kept thinking - if this is not right, shouldn't it simply stop? 

      Answer : You are absolutely right that Buddhists should not encourage burning of joss paper. If you observe carefully, Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery is actually actively discouraging burning, by posters, thousands of letters to residents, magazine articles, news features on TV, e-newsletters, website notices... The monastery also invested in experimenting with new systems to reduce pollution.

      The only reason the monastery allows burning is that there is great demand for it by the public. Education needs time. It would be unfortunate and unskilful to displease devotees by putting an abrupt ban to burning. This might make them develop aversion for proper Buddhism, which is what we wish to introduce to them in good time. We should not cut off our karmic affinities with them, but foster them with goodwill, patience and understanding instead :-]

      Related Links:

      Appeal to Fellow Buddhists to Not Burn Joss Paper
      Debunking the Top 10 Seventh Month Myths 
      Hellfire on Earth? : The Problem of Indisciminate Burning

      - A Fellow TDE Reader + Shen Shi'an


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