Standing Aloof and Entry Into World Affairs

发布日期:2017-08-30   字体大小:   


Shaolin Monastery has founded its own "Corps of Gong-fu Monks", organized its own enterprises, and established its own pharmacy. Emergence of suchlike business institutions means that the monastery has engaged in commercial activities. But what the landscape had been like before the emergence of these Shaolin businesses was simply appalling! There were a number of sham "Shaolin-Monastery corps of gong-fu monks", all pretending that they were dispatched by the abbot of Shaolin Monastery to go on around-the-globe tours for demonstrating Shaolin martial arts, while cheating their audiences out of their money by giving performances of spurious martial arts. And there was the phoney Shaolin pharmacy to sell bogus medicinal stuff with the sham Shaolin trademark imprinted on it. In a word in that period of time various products bearing a false Shaolin trademark were flooding the market. The ham sausage produced by a pork-processing plant also bore the trademark of "Shaolin Monastery"! This was really too much and too outrageous! How could our monastic population take such insults lying down and heartlessly leave traditional Shaolin culture trodden right underfoot? 


Under those circumstances, the only way out left us was to start our own commercial activities as a means to counteract such roguish business behavior and to prevent the repute of Shaolin Monastery from being further ravaged. I should like to point out that it cost my monastery dearly when it took the initiative in turning back the drive set afoot by some lay people and intended to excessively commercialize the tourist business in the scenic zone encompassing Shaolin Monastery. Before 2004, a shopping precinct which was populated by numerous petty businessmen seated itself right in front of the main monastic entrance of my monastery. In order to restore tranquility to our monastic precincts, Shaolin Monastery paid from its own budget a sum of several hundred million yuan (renminbi) to move the shopping precinct to another site. In this event nearly ten thousand businessmen and their stalls were moved from the shopping precinct in front of the monastery to settle in a new shopping zone. All the expenses the migration and the rehabilitation called for were paid by the monastery. Had the monastery been really thirsty for profiteering, would it have been so unthrifty with its own money? (From My Heart My Buddha)