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Malaysia — Saving animals from the pot

Thursday 29 October 2009

Langues :

Thursday October 29, 2009

IN a wet market in Penang, bull frogs sit and fishes and turtles swim in rectangular containers. These creatures may long for their freedom but they are helpless.

They seem destined for the dinner table unless you step up to save them. You can pay the seller and release the animals to the nearest forest or stream.

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Lama Lhundrup blessing the birds before releasing them.

Keen to save the lives of animals, more than 70 Buddhist devotees gathered at Chokyi Gyaltsen Centre (CGC) on Lorong Zoo 1 off Jalan Air Itam to attend an Animal Liberation ceremony one fine Sunday morning.

Present to conduct the ceremony and lead the prayers was the abbot of Kopan Monastery in Nepal, Khen-rinpoche Lama Lhundrup, who was on a five-day visit to Penang.

Thousands of crickets and hundreds of birds, fishes, frogs and turtles were released on that day.

Lama Lhudrup said the act of rescuing animals from being slaughtered had two benefits — not only do you save lives but you also prevent another person from killing them.

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Blessed by an abbot, these birds are among manyanimals liberated during a Buddhist ceremony.

CGC president Dr Daniel Yeoh said that saving animals was “ one of the most effective ways to cultivate loving kindness amongst children.”

“If children can show loving kindness with animals, it is naturally easier for them to extend this loving kindness to the people at large.

“This is one way to minimise violence, cruelty and war.

“Many patients with cancer or other terminal sicknesses are advised by Buddhist master Lama Zopa Rinpoche to practised animal liberation, and quite often the results turned out to be positive,” he said.

CGC animal liberation project coor- dinator Lee Shik Kee said it was joyful to release these animals, especially knowing that they had been saved from being slaughtered.

“Animals share the same feelings as humans such as happiness and fear.

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The frogs being freed into a stream after a blessing.

“We can do a small part to relieve the fears and sufferings of these helpless animals by liberating them.”

One of the CGC members Yap Cheng Hui said taking part in animal liberation would cultivate a sense of compassion or bodichitta.

“The fundamental belief of Buddhism is karma, that is, cause and result.

“Hence, the Buddhism practice of libe-rating animals is to create a direct cause for having a long and healthy life,’ he said.

This unique method of animal libera- tion practised by Lama Zopa Rinpoche encompasses four important elements, namely, rescuing animals from being slaughtered and taking the animals for a walk around holy objects consisting of Buddha statues, Buddhism scriptures and stupas (called the circumambulation of holy objects).

He said that praying for the animals created positive imprints so that people would have a good rebirth.


By ANTHONY CHEW

Source : thestar.com.my

View online : thestar.com.my

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