Temple Is a Part of Society

Publish Date:2024-02-20

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I believe that Buddhism and dharma teachings need not be confined to the walls of temples but be fully immersed and integrated into secular society where it could be best used to help alleviate suffering and deal with daily problems. Following this Mahayana practice, Shaolin Temple cannot be separated from secular society as a monk cannot be entirely segregated from society after ordination. Interaction with society is essential as the water we drink, the electricity we use, and even the food we consume, are products of society.


In Buddhism, we have a term called “Chushi” which means “leaving the world” entirely. In the past, temples were able to live off the land, but in present day living, it is not possible to survive on a few acres of land. Being part of society has become a necessity.

In today’s world, retreating into meditation would mean living a secluded and quiet life in the mountains, but part of the process would mean being marginalized from society. (From Shaolin Temple in My Heart)

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