On 19 June 2021, the Tasmanian Chinese Buddhist Academy of Australia convened the 13th Academic Symposium via Zoom.
As the coronavirus pandemic continues to plagued the world and travel between countries is very limited, the Academy hosted yet another symposium online, with over 500 people across 350 users logging in. Just like we would have if the event was in-person, the Academy performed the various holy rituals and academic exchanges of this year’s symposium through virtual space to pray for the Great Holy Sakyamuni Buddha to protect and bless this Saha world, aid and guide sentient beings to advance passed this century’s pandemic.
The convenience of modern technology means that even more attendees can join from around the world. Amongst the guests that attended online were Sri Lankan Maha Thero, the Lifetime Secretary-General of the World Buddhist Sangha Youth, Most Venerable Anurrudha Maha Thero; Professor of Philosophy at Peking University, Honorary President of the Academy of Religion at Peking University, Honorary President of the Tasmanian Chinese Buddhist Academy of Australia, Professor Lou Yulie; President of the Australia China Buddhist Council, Ban Ruo Dharma Master; as well as local honoured guests, including Independent Member for Clark, Kristie Johnston MP; President of Chinese Communities Association of Tasmania Mr. Brian Chung and his wife; Rotating President and Secretary General of the Federation of Chinese Associations Tasmania Mr. Jason Xu; and former SBS Chinese Broadcaster, May Hu OAM.
Following the traditions of Chinese Han Transmission Tantrayana Buddhism – Holy Tantra Gu Fan Mi Jin-Gang-Dhyana Buddhism, the symposium drew open its curtains with the Holy Ancient Indian Vaiseli Bhagavan Fo Fan Chi Ming Indra Net Homa Holy Ritual, subsequently the Flag Holy Ritual, and welcoming Ancient Indian Vaiseli Bhagavan Fo Fan Chi Ming Lineage Transmission Holy Tantra Dharma Implements. The Permanent President of Tasmania Chinese Buddhist Academy of Australia, Bhagavan Zhi-Ji Vimalakirti Patriarch Master, ascended the Dharma throne to deliver the welcoming address to begin this year's academic discussions.
Following the rituals, the Dean of the Academy, Elder Guru Vajra Hong-Jing delivered the Academy’s annual report summarising the various events and achievements of the Academy during 2020.
The theme of this year’s academic symposium is a continuation of last year's -- how humanity can reflect and draw philosophical inspirations from the global pandemic.
Over 180 academic papers were received this year, which is the highest number that the Academy has seen since the inception of the annual symposium 13 years ago. Contributors ranged from junior practitioners of under 10 years old, submitting theses in the form of music and the arts, to senior Elder Gurus and practitioners who have been practising the lineage for over half a century.
Due to time constraints, nine papers were shared during the symposium, with President Bhagavan Zhi-Ji Vimalakirti Patriarch Master personally critiquing the selected papers. The Academy’s Translation and Interpretation Department’s Head, Great Holy Jewel Chief Attendant Vajra Fa-Cheng also provided immediate English translation to ensure that all participants were also to share in the discussion.
Following the discussions, President of Tasmanian Chinese Buddhist Academy of Australia, Elder Guru Vajra Long-Sheng, announced the list of awardees whom were presented with certificates by the Dean.
The 13th Academic Symposium of Tasmanian Chinese Buddhist Academy of Australia begun with the holy reverberations of the Kai Yuan Holy Tantra Drum and Gong, under such Buddha music and holy sounds the symposium curtain drew to a close in perfection.