March 25, 2011 was an eventful day marked with many “firsts”. It was the day of the inaugural Kechara Sunday Service, and the first time the Sunday dharma classes for adults and children were moved to the morning. It was also the first time that a number of Kecharians would pay a short visit to THE holy land where Kechara World Peace Centre (KWPC) will be located in the future.
To make the visit even more meaningful, 130 birds were purchased in a pet shop with the aim to release them at the destination. At 2.00pm, the following 17 children and 11 adult Kecharians left Kechara House for KWPC land:
|Phng Kheng Boon||Angel Lee|
|Phng Kheng Hwa||Martin Chow|
|Phng Kheng Lip||Nicholas Yu|
|Beatrix Ooi||Karen Chong|
|Samantha Chan||Ngeow Su An|
|Julien Roth||Mr Lam|
|Lucas Roth||Choi Seem|
|Jason Roth||Wei Theng|
|Sean Wang||Jace Chong|
|Lew Wen Xin|
|Lew Wen Yi|
|Lew Wen Yue|
The KWPC land is located in a vast area on the way up to Genting Highlands, where there are plenty of tall trees, wild flowers, green shrubs and rolling hills as far the eye can see. The weather looked rather gloomy initially, with little drizzles while we were on the road. But when we arrived there at about 3.00pm, there wasn’t a single drop of rain and the sun was shining gently.
A delicious cool breeze greeted us as we unloaded the birds onto a bald patch in the field of green grass where we stood. The day was beautiful; pink wild flowers were crawling over the green hill, a butterfly with white spots was fluttering around the group, as though it was very pleased to see us!
Nicholas gave a brief explanation to the group about the vision of KWPC: it will be a vast, beautiful place where people can find peace, seek solace and get blessings from the huge Buddha statues (of Lama Tsongkhapa, Vajrayogini, Setrap etc) there, where people can practice taiqi, yoga and other wholesome activities in a place surrounded by nature… a place where people can retreat to, to find their inner peace and let go of their everyday worries.
Nicholas also explained that the purpose for bringing the birds there to be released is to create causes for the realisation of the KWPC vision. There was also another purpose, which is to dedicate the merits arising from releasing the birds to the swift recovery of Gabriel and Tamedran Raj, both of whom are in hospital battling the unknown illnesses which are plaguing them.
We did the refuge, Shantideva prayer and recited Medicine Buddha and Rinpoche’s mantra, blew gently on to the birds to bless them and then released them into the great wilderness! It was a very joyful feeling to see the birds flying off high into the blue sky, you could taste the sweetness of freedom.
After doing the dedication prayers, Phng Wee Kiat, Lyn and Phng Kheng Ming arrived, bringing the total number of us to 31. Wee Kiat and Lyn were amazed at what they saw and were enthusiastic with how KWPC would become. Lyn was already imagining where the entrance to KWPC would be located!
We hung around a little longer to enjoy the serenity and nature. The younger children (mainly the lovely little girls in pink i.e. Natasha, Nadia, Wen Yi and Wen Yue) had a fun time playing with the tall grass which looked like cats whiskers. The butterfly mentioned earlier also literally hung around with us, paying special attention to Julien. It kept finding him and clinging on to his finger! Everyone else tried their luck to attract the butterfly only to find that it was a very loyal butterfly.