Thursday, December 30, 2010

Update on the Relocation

 First of all, we wish all 
a Happy & Spiritual 
New Year 2011

In the past three weeks we have been busy getting the new place at Phuah Hin Leong road ready before the year comes to an end. So far, the only things done are the installation of water supply, the painting of the hall and upstairs. The back portion of the building which includes the kitchen and the installation of the roof has yet to be completed. A sum of money has been spent and yet so much still needs to be done. The new place is a heritage building and most of the facilities are quite “antique.” There are plans to install root at the kitchen as it is an open-air (air well) one. The squatting toilet too has to be replaced so as to facilitate the elderly patrons using it.

The most crucial facility, that is electricity supply, has been submitted but has yet to be approved. Without the installation of the meter, things at the old place are unable to be shifted in. Work too is confined to day time. 

That, so far is the progress that we have made since the news of the relocation. Any assistance that can be rendered is most welcomed. 

Sādhu! Sādhu! Sādhu!

Jennifer Yeoh

Meditation Hall
Air Well — "Open Space" Going to Toilet.

Viewing the Air Well from Inside

Progress on the Squatting Toilet. It Gone!

Upstairs — Working Space
Upstairs — Office
Planning to Construct Storeroom Here

Sunday, December 19, 2010


An extract from Chapter One of 
our newly release book


Many people declare themselves to be ‘Buddhists’ when in actual fact they do not know what being Buddhists really means. Many students (I was once like that too), when required to fill forms state their religion as “Buddhism” or “Agama Buddha” (in Malay) although they have no idea at all what the essential Teachings of the Buddha (Dhamma)  is all about let alone understanding and practising the Dhamma.

Today, we see so many different ‘Brands’ of “Buddhists”.  Let us look at them and do some reflection.

  • The ‘Burning’ “Buddhist” 
You see quite a number of such “Buddhists” … they burn bundles of joss sticks, joss paper and other paper paraphernalia at home, in Buddhist Associations and even Buddhist Temples. Poor Mother Earth. She is choking and suffering and our environment gets more and more polluted. Talk about wise, wholesome and good Karmic actions!  When will such “Buddhists” ever learn that the ‘gods will not be appeased’ (and we don’t get peace within and without)  through a ‘combustion reaction’?  We need to conquer the Devils of Greed, Hatred and Delusion.

  • The ‘Wesak’ “Buddhist” 
These ‘once a year’ “Wesak Buddhists” throng Buddhist Associations and Temples on Wesak Day carrying out so many deluded practices. They perform many meaningless rituals, have their fortunes read, their amulets and talismans blessed, rush for free Dana food (the “Hungry Ghost” Realm is very real!) and “Holy Water”. They make supplication to the Buddha, asking for all sorts of favours with promises to do certain things if their material wishes are granted. Poor Buddha ! He must be very tired listening to the bargains of these “Wesak Buddhists”.

  • The ‘Intellectual’ “Buddhist” 
I have come across many friends who are like “Walking Encyclopedias” when it comes to ‘intellectual Dhamma’. They devour one Dhamma book after another, listen to many Dhamma Speakers and Tapes but alas all these remain at the intellectual level. The Dhamma is not practised and actualized. Such intellectual Buddhists still cling on to their negative traits and habits. Talk about the practice of Dana … ha, now we understand partly why so many Buddhist Organizations lack Volunteer workers for Dhammaduta (missionaries) work. We have too many “intellectual Buddhistswalking around! 

  • The ‘Ceremonies’ “Buddhist” 
We can see such Buddhists in some Buddhist Temples and Associations. They are caught up in lots of devotional rites, rituals and ceremonies the whole year long. So much of their time and energies are sapped indulging in unnecessary rites and rituals. When will they ever learn, understand, practice and realize the Sublime Teachings of the Buddha?  Unless and until they do, the defilements will remain or even multiply. We do not deny the role of a certain degree of devotional Buddhism but beware … rites and rituals can bind us more and more to the Wheel of Samsara. 

  • The ‘Social’ “Buddhist” 
There are Buddhists who are particularly active when it comes to socializing and fun activities. Of course, we need good Buddhist Fellowships, excursions, tours and other healthy recreational activities. But beware! Our primary aim in being a Buddhist is to learn and practice the Dhamma, to seek and realize Enlightenment. ‘Social’ Buddhists sometimes frequent Buddhist Temples, Buddhist Societies and Associations with ulterior motives.  They may be looking for potential life partners or have a hidden business or political agenda. The Dhamma takes backstage.

  • The ‘Deity’ “Buddhist” 
It is interesting  to note that many Chinese “Buddhists” regard the Buddha as another of their gods or deities. If you visit their homes, you can find the image of the Buddha placed at their shrine altar together with a host of other gods. ‘Deity’ “Buddhists” perhaps believe in this: ‘The more gods, the better (and merrier) … more protection and security!’ Will they ever learn the meaning of true Refuge in the Triple Gem? I know of a ‘long-time Buddhist’ (also an ex-Committee Member of a Buddhist Organization) who was so afraid of removing his many gods from his shrine altar at home. He believes misfortune can strike him if he does so!

  • The ‘Emergency times’ “Buddhist” 
Such Buddhists only pray to the Buddha or Kuan Yin in times of trouble, problems and conflicts. They pray for immediate solutions to their problems of health, poor business, love relationships, academic studies etc. At other times, when they are relatively trouble-free, they will be too busy chasing material wealth and indulging in sensual pursuits. For such Buddhists, there is no time and place for Dhamma. I remember some time ago, there was a “Buddhist” man who came to our Buddhist Association with a very lost and stressed-up look. He wanted to learn Meditation to solve immediately his big problem … insomnia and business loss. I suggested that he joined our Dhamma Study Class first. He did but it did not last. He was not patient and just wanted to solve his ‘emergency’ problem.

  • The ‘Preaching’ “Buddhist” 
The Buddha once said, “Others faults are easy to see but one’s own faults one hides like a fowler in disguise.” “Preaching” Buddhists do a lot of talking, suggesting, ordering and commanding. They project themselves as the “Know-All” in Dhamma but they themselves do little when it comes to real Dhammaduta (missionaries) work and Dana. Such Buddhists can be quite intelligent and creative but alas they don’t really practice the Dhamma. Talking and suggesting is one thing but wise pro-active action is another. Intelligence and Wisdom can be worlds apart.  

  • The ‘Cultish’ “Buddhist”  
Such Buddhists can be found everywhere. They can be filled with delusion, ego and conceit. Instead of spending their time practising good Dana, Sila and Bhavana (generosity, virtues and mind-cultivation), they waste much time and energy chasing after “cultivated monks/nuns”, futile arguing over hair-splitting Dhamma points, attempting to convert others to their “cultish” brand of Buddhism and hero-worshipping and tending to their “enlightened leaders or teachers’. 


OH TEIK BIN is a retired teacher and has been involved in Dhammaduta work for more than 22 years at Persatuan Buddhist Hilir Perak (PBHP), Teluk Intan. He is one of the founder members of PBHP. His Dhammaduta and outreach services include guidance classes and counseling, community library work, Buddhist Sunday School, Dhamma classes for students and adults, Camps for students, Dhamma sharing and Buddhist wake chanting services. 

Over the Internet, Oh Teik Bin has posted a lot of educational and Dhamma material at the following Websites:

He can be contacted at Facebook and

Click at the title of the book for the FREE BOOK @ our Inward Paths website:


Other titles about Buddhist

 What Makes You Not a BuddhistDaily Wisdom: 365 Buddhist InspirationsThe Accidental Buddhist

Saturday, December 11, 2010

UP village boy suddenly acquires American accent

Rajesh, the wonder boy, speaks fluently in English and 
has suddenly acquired knowledge of physics and mathematics

The Times of India,

INDIA, LUCKNOW: A 14-year-old Dalit boy, born and brought up in a remote village of western Uttar Pradesh, has suddenly turned angrez. Rajesh, without any evident help, has started speaking fluently in English and does so with a proper American drawl. And that's not all: He seems to have forgotten how to speak Hindi.

Wonders do not cease with this: His knowledge of physics and mathematics has left engineering students baffled. Having already penned three books, Rajesh is now looking forward to some research work.

All of this may sound like a Bollywood script on one of its favourite themes, reincarnation. However, Rajesh, a resident of a nondescript village 40 km from Saharanpur, refuses to call it so.

In his words: "There is no concept of reincarnation. It is just that memory can't be destroyed till there are sound waves in the world."

And this is the area of science that interests Rajesh the most. "He has already written three documents, one on memory, the other on sociology and the third on liberalisation," said an excited Shishu Pal Singh Verma, principal of Willian Jefferson Clinton Science and Technology Centre, where Rajesh was enrolled last year.

"I did not take him seriously for a few months but on Republic Day, while the students were reciting poetry before the entire college, Rajesh took the mike and addressed the gathering in fluent English. This left us almost shell-shocked," says Shishu Pal.

Rajesh's mother Omkali and 16-year-old brother Kaluwa are daily wage labourers who earn just enough to manage two square meals a day. His father Sompal is mentally-challenged. Asked how and when these changes came into Rajesh, Omkali said that it happened almost a year ago when Rajesh was helping Kaluwa erect a wall.

"Every time the brothers brought the wall up to two feet, their father would smash it. Irritated, Rajesh threw a brick at him who was hit in the head and began to bleed."

This left Rajesh dumbfounded. "For the next three months, he did not utter a single word. When he did, it was not in Hindi," said Jamal, a resident of Saharanpur.