An Update from DDMLAC
Our Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic
DDMLAC hopes that you and your families are staying healthy and safe during these uncertain times.
Because the pandemic has driven Americans to practice social distancing through the implementation of stay-at-home isolation, DDMLAC has created online discussion classes, Dharma talks, meditation sessions and Dharma services assemblies in place of its on-site activities. DDMLAC holds daily Great Compassion Dharani Services from 8:30pm to 9:00pm PST in hopes to encourage individuals to connect with Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva’s wishes for the well-being of all sentient beings. By calming our minds and giving others hope, warmth and confidence, we emanate Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva's spirit. Online registrations for these prayer services are open to the public. We hope to transfer all generated merits to our friends and family and to all healthcare professionals working diligently to care for those infected by the virus. DDMLAC encourages devotees to take their home-isolation orders as a solitary retreat to practice the Dharma in the face of this fluctuating pandemic and to seek insight to settle our minds through calm contemplation. The Abbot President shared his insight that this pandemic should not be viewed as our enemy but rather a test in our lives. He strongly urges us to initiate empathy and embrace our society with mutual thoughtfulness and tolerance as we march hand-in-hand through this adversity.
COVID-19 impacted the world rapidly and powerfully, causing many medical facilities to run out of supplies. Dr. Chang Qi Guang, a volunteer for the DDM Medical Relief Group after the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, recently directed his compassionate efforts towards setting up isolation units for the Los Angeles Department of Health Services for COVID-19. It is during some of the hardest times that we are able to see our connection with others. Due to his previous relationship with DDMLAC, Dr. Chang Qi Guang reached out to the director of DDMLAC, Venerable Chang Yue, as soon as the rapid shortage of medical supplies was apparent. In an effort to do our part in aiding our community, DDMLAC and the Chan Meditation Center in New York have since donated thousands of medical-grade masks and disposable gloves to several local medical facilities, including the Bell Garden and Dockweiler Isolation Units and Keck Medicine of USC. Handmade cloth masks made by DDM Taiwan volunteers were also distributed to DDMLAC devotees as a gesture of kindness. Seemingly there is an invisible law that guides us towards being compassionate with all sentient beings. Compassion has no physical or racial boundaries. Only by rendering mutual care can we survive through and overcome the hardship of this pandemic.