Altruistic Short-term Ordination
Short-term ordination is a virtue that has been practiced in many parts of Asia for hundreds of years. The transference of merit is also a major virtue in the bodhisattva path. In the Avatamsaka Sutra, there is a chapter on Dedication/Transference that explains the method and manner of transference practiced on each bodhisattva consciousness.
We combine short-term ordination and merit transference to form Altruistic Short-term Ordination.
Many of the virtues and characteristics of a long-term ordination can not be perfected in the Altruistic Short-term Ordination since it only lasts two weeks.
But what is an Altruistic Short-term Ordination?
To receive an Altruistic Short-term Ordination means to be ordained for someone or for many people.
Why Do I Want To Be Ordained Temporarily For Someone?
Because they don't have the conditions to be ordained even for a short period of time. For example, they are seriously ill, comatose, or deceased. Sometimes, the person I treasure has no faith, and I would like to practice for him so that he will have faith and have an affinity with the dharma in the future.
Because I want to transfer the merits of practice to that person. Merits constitute all the energies generated when we clear our heart and mind, when we are focused, and when we free ourselves of the mundane. These merits can directly affect the mind and living conditions of the person we cultivate for.
Because I realize that all sentient beings and I are part of the web of affinities. Therefore, I cultivate for the whole network, not for myself. For a layperson, even those who practice daily, it is advisable to receive each year the temporary altruistic ordination to remind ourselves that we are the whole network and we cultivate for the whole web of affinities.
1. Hair shaving ceremony
2. Precepts Transmission ceremony:
- Refuge with the Triple Jewel
- Novice Monk/Nun Precepts
- Transmission of the three objects that represent the three precious characteristics.
- Avatamsaka Bodhisattvas Precepts
3. The novice joins the sangha and lives a monastic life with a pre-determined daily schedule. Their daily activities consist of:
- Physical exercises to improve physical strength
- Spiritual practices
- Dharma study
- Group activities
4. Participate in the World Peace Gathering and Mandala.
5. Returning the Precepts ceremony.
Model of Practice
Although this practice is for a short time period, our bodhisattva path will continue forever. Therefore, the Altruistic Short-term Monastic program is established according to the model of "Transcending Worldliness and Engaging in the World", so that we can still apply what we learned during the short-term ordination when we return to our lay life.
The path of Transcend Worldliness and Engage in the World is to completely expand the non-destructible, ever-present light of the True Nature.