A group of 5 members from Mangala Vihara (Buddhist Temple) comprising Bhante Raja, two and one student member/s each from the Mandarin and English Dhamma class and a devotee went on an 11 days trip to Medan (from 21st June to 1st July).
We will like to record our heartfelt thanks to Sister Suriaty Simon for her effors in making this trip possible and such a pleasant one for all of us. She had made arrangements with her sister Suriyami Simon, her classmate Ms Ah Ling, her friend Mr. Herman Thang and many who extended their hospitalities to us during our stay.
The purpose of the trip was a meditation workshop and retreat at Taman Bodhi Asri (TABA). We also visited Buddhist temples and Centres to take part in Dhamma sharing and meditation sessions, and naturally, sightseeing too.
We were surprised by the numerous requests for blessing services which we gladly rendered. House blessings was top of the list followed by blessings for the sick, old folks, devotees, well-wishers, an expectant mother and also a Maranasati service.
We were given an opportunity to witness the consecration of TABA and hosted a dana lunch on the day of our departure to some 30 members from the nearby village.
Turning back the clock back to the first day after our arrival at Medan airport, when we were hosted to lunch by Mr. Herman Thang, the Vice Chairman of the Board of Committee of Vihara Buddha Paduma and also a past president of the Lions Club, Medan.
Our first visit was Vihara Borobudur to meet Bhante Jinadhammo Mahathera. We did not meet him as he was out for Dana. Nonetheless, we toured the premises and ascended the Avalokiteshvara Pagoda.
We spent the night at Vihara Buddha Paduma in Binjai where Bhante Raja conducted a Puja, Dhamma sharing followed by a meditation session and blessings to devotees and well-wishers.
The next day, we visited Mini Swedagon Temple, Taman Alam Lumbini
On our way to Vihara Saddhavana at Sidikalang, we made a detour to take in the breathtaking view of Lake Toba from hill-top.
On our second night, we rested at Vihara Saddhavana where Bhante Raja conducted Puja and Dhamma sharing session with some female devotees who were there for retreat.
On the third day of our trip, we visited Indonesia Theravada Buddhist Center (ITBC) in Medan.
Our main destination was Taman Bodhi Asri (TABA) for the meditation workshop cum retreat.
Owing to our extended tour and space constraint of the blog, we will pause here. Please continue with us on our Medan Mission tour in Part 2!
Contributor: Chin Kee Thou