In a unique departure from the normal ceremonial pattern, the Abbot, Master Hui Fang introduced a relaxation and meditation exercise. The deeply calming experience prepared the attendees physically and mentally for the devotional prayer of light and peace for the world.
In a well organized line of brightly burning little lamps devotees placed their offerings at the after which each one was offered a small a small Lucky Bean plant.
The Lucky bean plant is hardy tree that is native to parts of Australia and also known as the More Ton Bay Chestnut tree or Black Bean tree. Another horticulture name is the ‘Green Ingot’ because the tree’s appearance resembles the Yuan Bao (an odd shaped gold or silver ingot used for money in China)
The tree which feature lovely green leaves with bright red and yellow flowers is often grown as an indoor plant in containers keeping it small. In the wild however, the lucky bean plant can become a tree with a high of 130 feet.
After the ceremony attendees were treated to a delightful vegetarian lunch and entertainment which lasted well into the afternoon. Members of BLIA (Buddhist Light International Association) provided an veritable assortment of local and Chinese cakes and sweets with which to raise money for good causes.
After the celebrations the sense of well being was evident in the contented smiles of both adults and children. As people made their way home they were reminded of the fundamental principles of goodwill on a little message printed on their Lucky Bean pot ……do good deeds…..speak good words……think good thoughts.
It was a day enjoyed by all.