Going into high school, I escaped the fate of repeating a grade twice by transferring to Kaohsiung City’s No. 3 Junior High.
How my grades gradually improved at Kaohsiung City’s No. 3 Junior High is a mystery even to me. Maybe it was because we were all repeat students, and among all the repeat students, I was one of the better ones. As a result, I regained confidence and my grades steadily rose up.
I was accepted into the Municipal Kaohsiung Senior Vocational Industrial High School (KSVS). In the first year, my grades put me at number one in my class. The teacher’s assessment was that I was, “Excellent in both character and academic performance.”
Being first in my class, my tuition and fees were waived.
Being first in my class, I received a scholarship for low-income students from the Chia Hsin Cement Corporation.
In the three years at KSVS, I placed first in my class for six semesters, receiving the scholarship six times.
In other words, during the three years at KSVS, my family did not have to spend any money for me to complete my studies.
For the rest of my life, I will never forget about receiving the Chia Hsin Cement Corporation scholarship.
Yeah, I had a scholarship!
I am forever grateful!
I will remember it as long as I live!
Thus, when I founded Sheng-Yen Lu Foundation, I had a dream one night.
In the dream, my body was stretching longer and longer, becoming as big as a mountain and as brilliant as the sun. My body stretched to cover a great river like a golden bridge.
Many, many students of all ages walked over my body to reach from one side of the river to the other.
These students rejoiced, dancing in merriment.
They were singing a “Lotus Song”, joyous in having reached their destination.
When I awoke from the dream, I pondered awhile and knew the time to give back had arrived. I had received the Chia Hsin Cement Corporation scholarship back then and now with Sheng-Yen Lu Foundation, I shall establish a “Lotus Scholarship” to support those academically outstanding students with financial hardship.
The scholarship will benefit countless students.
We were once supported by others. Now we can support others in the same way.
In meditation, I suddenly saw many True Buddha cultivators holding forth many different currencies. These sparkling True Buddha cultivators all wish to contribute to the Lotus Scholarship.
“How do we contribute? ”
I replied, “You may send your contributions to Sheng-Yen Lu Foundation. Give as much as you can, as it will bear unimaginable merit-virtue!”
All of a sudden, I felt at complete ease. All the True Buddha cultivators were awash in shimmering light. It was as though a huge crowd had gathered to carry out this charitable work, expelling the ignorance of sentient beings – just like the sun’s rays cutting through a dark silent night.
Sheng-Yen Lu Foundation is like a tree, ever growing with flourishing branches and lush leaves, thousands and thousands of leaves.
A timeless song.
An everlasting light.
May the Lotus Scholarship blossom into the perfect field for cultivating the seeds of all that is good. May its name and repute reverberate loudly around the world.
Translated by Liweih Wright
Edited by Morgan Chiu, Justin Chiu and Fo-Ching Lu