Venerable Yin Shun - the Guide and the Teacher
Ven Yin Shun was born in 1906 in a small agricultural village in the district of Haining, located in the province of Zhejiang. After the passing of both his parents, in 1930, he became a monk under Ven Ching Nian's teaching. This occurred in Fu Chuan Temple located in Putuo Mountain. He was given the Dharma name Yin Shun. In 1931, he went to study at Ming Nan Buddhist Academy in Pu-Tuo Temple in Xiamen. However, in the same year, the chief of the academy, Ven Ta Xing, introduced him to teach in Gushan Buddhist Academy because of his outstanding wisdom. Instead, he became a teacher.
Throughout his life, Ven Yin Shun inherited the legacy of Buddhism revolution from Wu Chang Buddhist Academy. He unearthed the basic principles of Buddha Dharma in a critical manner. He placed emphasis on discriminating inaccurate assumptions made during the evolution of Buddhism while reinstalled and promoted accommodative new theory, which was suited to the current era. He was such an excellent revolutionary Buddhist thinker of the era.
Ven Yin Shun's Buddhist thinking was not restricted to any particular sutra, sastra, sect or school. In fact, he thoroughly comprehends the overall evolution of Buddhism. He selected the essence of Buddhism which he completely understood to portray the original intention of Buddha. His 'human Buddhism' has indeed become the leading main stream Buddhist thinking of the era. During his life time, he has penned many well known books including the Maio Yun collection, which consisted of 24 books and also many thick specialty books, totaling 7 million words, an unsurpassable quantity. All his life, Ven Yin Shun took name and money very lightly. Instead, he devoted totally to Buddha Dharma and the sentient beings. He was such a high achieving monk with very excellent faith and practice. He was also the very first monk in China with professorial qualification.
Throughout his life, he managed to culture many people. From his early days in China in Ming Nan, WU Chang, Han Tsang and Fa Wang Buddhist Academies till latterly in San Tao Temple and Fu Yuan Buddhist Academy in Taiwan, he has helped many talented Buddhists. Ven Zheng Yuan of Zhu Zhi Foundation and our teacher Ven Tsang Hui were his students as well. The great venerables of the era including Ven Sheng yuan and Ven Sin Yun have also confessed to the influence from Ven Yin Shun's Buddhist thinking.
Although Ven Yin Shun has passed away peacefully in 2005, he has been exemplary in many ways to us. We should learn the manner he studied Buddhism, including 'returning to the simplistic Indian Buddhism' and ' analysing Buddha dharma with Buddha Dharma'. We should also learn the way he elaborated undiscovered Buddhism facts with such devotion to the sentient beings that created very adaptable and contemporary Buddhism theories and content.
導師在一九零六年出生於浙江省海寧縣的一個農村。一九三零年 , 在父母親逝世後 , 在普陀山之福泉庵清念和尚座下出家 ; 法名印順 , 字盛正。導師在一九三一年到廈門普陀寺閩南佛學院求法。因智慧過人 , 同年在院長大醒法師的介紹下往鼓山佛學院教課 ; 從學生變成了老師。
印順導師一生中繼承武昌佛學院佛教改革的路線, 以批判的精神抉發佛法的根本教理; 著重了釐清佛法發展中的錯執與恢宏適應時代的新理路, 成為當代佛教極傑出的佛教改革思想家。印順導師的佛教思想不拘於一經一論或一宗一派, 而是在全盤理解整體佛教的演化; 抉擇其中菁華融會貫通以指出佛陀本懷。其 “人間佛教”思想己成為當代佛教的領航主流思想。導師一生中的著作包括二十四冊的 “妙雲集”與許多大部頭的專著; 合計七百萬多字, 份量無以倫比。導師一生淡薄名利, 一心為法為眾生; 是一位信仰與實踐都非常卓越的高僧, 更是中國有史以來第一位博士法師。
導師一生中樹人無數, 從早期中國的閩南,武昌,漢藏, 和合江法王諸佛學院, 到後期台灣的善導寺及福嚴佛學院, 造就了其多佛教人才。慈濟的證嚴法師與恩師藏慧上人亦是導師的學生。當代的佛教長老如聖嚴法師, 星雲大師等都承認受到導師佛教思想的影響。雖然導師己於二零零五年圓寂, 但其 ‘回歸印度佛教的淳樸’ 及 ‘以佛法研究佛法’ 的治學態度; 以入世的情懷闡前人之未見, 而為佛教發展出具時代性與適應性的理路和內涵; 都是我們學習的典範。
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