20181014-Children-Buddhist-Class-Netherlands1

Guan Yin Citta Netherlands opens its first Buddhist Children’s Class

Guan Yin Citta Netherlands opens its first Buddhist Children’s Class

20181014-Children-Buddhist-Class-Netherlands1

Since the opening of the first Buddhist Practice Center in Amsterdam in June 2018, Guan Yin Citta Netherlands has organized a number of activities, such as Buddhist group study session and free vegetarian tasting events to spread the Buddhist teachings of Master Jun Hong Lu and traditional Chinese culture. On October 14, 2018, Guan Yin Citta Netherlands launched a brand new Buddhist Children’s Class for free. It attracted dozens of kids and their parents, and received positive responses.

The aim of the program is to teach children Buddhist morals and ethics, help them cultivate a gracious attitude, spirit and heart with the mind of tolerance, appreciation, and compassion. By learning the basic concepts of Buddhism, children can develop a right world outlook on life and values, which will benefit them in a long term. The class also leads the children to overcome and correct inappropriate thoughts and bad habits, helping them fit and flourish in society.

The first Children Buddhist Class contained four sections, including introduction of Guan Yin Bodhisattva and other five Bodhisattvas, Buddhist story sharing, Buddhist scriptures Reading, and table manners teaching. At the start of the class, volunteer teachers showed the children how to make prostration and show respect to Buddha. After learning the names of Bodhisattvas worshipped at Guan Yin Citta, every kid kneeled down in front of the figures of Bodhisattvas and made prostrations. After that, the class processed into the Buddhist story sharing section. One of the volunteer teachers told the children a story from Master Jun Hong Lu’s books. It’s about how a jewel business man, who has been sincerely reciting The Great Compassion Mantra every day, was saved by two Bodhisattvas in a dangerous situation. The riveting story made the children realize the importance of reciting Buddhist scriptures on a daily basis and the amazing effects. Once hardships come or bad things happen, people who have been performing diligent reciting practice can receive protections from Buddha and Bodhisattva.

And then in the Buddhist Scripture Reading section, children were taught to read the “Great Compassion Mantra“, “Heart Sutra“, and “The Cundi Dharani” (Zhun Ti Shen Zhou). The children were full of confidence and chanting very well. Their positive attitude and earnest interest towards the learning moved some of the parents to tears. Some of the children were even able to recite the “Zhun Ti Shen Zhou” during the class, which was so amazing and incredible.

Another highlight of the class is the teaching of table manners. In this section, volunteer teachers taught the children the proper dinning etiquette, and Buddhist prayer before a meal to express gratitude to Guan Yin Bodhisattva. The teacher said, “When you have a meal, it is important to avoid some things. First, don’t insert your chopsticks upright in the bowl of rice, because it’s a way to offer to the spirit of a dead person. Second, don’t beat your bowl with spoons, chopsticks, because it can be associated with the behaviors of begging in the old times. Most importantly, do not point at other people with your chopsticks at the table, which is considered to be rude.” Under the guidance of teachers, the children were immersed in the traditional Chinese culture and happily enjoyed their meals in the right way.

After the class, three kids expressed their interest in reading Buddhist scriptures and took some Buddhist books home. Everyone was excited and grateful for having such a good opportunity to learn so much. They are looking forward to the next gathering in the near future.

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Master Jun Hong Lu

Master Jun Hong Lu

Jun Hong Lu is the chairman and Director of Australia Oriental Media Buddhist Charity Association registered under United Nations Global Compact as NGO-Non Government Organisation since July 2015.

New Children Dharma Class at Guan Yin Hall Paris Picture 1

New Children Dharma Class at Guan Yin Hall, Paris

New Children Dharma Class at Guan Yin Hall, Paris

New Children Dharma Class at Guan Yin Hall Paris Picture 1

There’s nothing more important than helping our children be more focused, calm and relaxed with good hearts and mindfulness. Instilling basic Buddhist values, such as compassion, empathy, and altruism, into children will benefit them in a long run and effectively promote their cognitive and socioemotional development. This is why Guan Yin Citta Dharma Door Buddhist Association of Paris started the Children Dharma Class in late Fall of 2017, dedicated to planting the seeds of Dharma into the awareness of young minds. Using an innovative teaching style and fun activities, the program exposes kids into a joyful, funny and relaxing learning environment and makes Buddha’s teachings more easier to grasp.

On Jun 23, 2018, the ninth Children Dharma Class started at Guan Yin Hall in Paris and dozens of kids attended. The main topic of this class is “The Virtue of Patience”. It aims to help children explore how to deal with conflicts and anger by arising the awareness of forgiveness, tolerance and forbearance. In daily life, it’s quite normal and inevitable that kids fight and fall out with each other because of varies issues. Parents normally intervene to take action. But beyond that is the better way to help kids learn to manage their emotions. In this class, through the study of several interesting Buddhist stories from Master Jun Hong Lu’s books, the kids harvested some practical methods to deal with this issue. At the end of one of the stories, Master Jun Hong Lu said, “When we were in the situations making us feel angry, we need to focus on what our breathing actually feels like, calm down our mind and slow down heart rate. Understanding the other person’s perspective will stimulate the growth of love and our capacity to endure and to accept. When it increases to a certain point, the feeling of anger will dissipate.”  

To help the less motivated learners take part in, volunteer teachers invited some of the kids to act out roles in their favorite stories and become a part of a play drama. By using the role-play, kids had a deeper understanding about how to concern for people and their views. Afterwards, the kids and teachers played cooperative fun games together. One of the volunteer said, “Dealing with anger is a big issue for kids. First, letting them be more aware of their emotions is important. Then providing them the opportunities to cultivate the virtue of patience is essential. This will help kids raise the awareness of valuing other perspectives and people, which is one of the best ways to boost compassion and love. As a matter of fact, if we practice the Four Immeasurable Minds of loving kindness, compassion, joy and equanimity according to Buddha’s teaching, our heart will grow. And we will have the capacity to accept everything. “

Finally, under the instructions of volunteer teachers, every kid learned how to write the Chinese character “Patience”. Everyone was excited and grateful for having such a good opportunity to learn so much. They are looking forward to the next gathering in the near future.

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Master Jun Hong Lu

Master Jun Hong Lu

Jun Hong Lu is the chairman and Director of Australia Oriental Media Buddhist Charity Association registered under United Nations Global Compact as NGO-Non Government Organisation since July 2015.