Monday, December 8, 2008

A short biography of Chan Master Jinghui

Chan Master Jinghui was born in Xinzhou, Hubei Province, China, in 1933. In 1951, when he was eighteen years old, Chan Master Jinghui ordained as a Bhikshu in Yunmen Temple. After ordaining, he became the personal attendant of China’s eminent authority on Chan Buddhism, Chan Master Empty Cloud. In 1952, he became Chan Master Empty Cloud’s Dharma heir. From 1956 to 1963, Chan Master Jinghui studied in the newly founded Beijing Chinese Buddhist Studies Academy, belonging to the first group of graduates. In 1963, he was wrongly accused of being a “Rightest,” and was forced into “reform through labor” programs in Beijing, Guangzhou, Hubei and other places. In 1979, after a change in the Communist government’s policies, he returned to Beijing. From that time onward, Chan Master Jinghui has worked tirelessly to revive Buddhism within China. He is responsible for the rebuilding and restoration of many important temples, such as Bailin Temple, founded by the great master Zhazhou, and the Fourth Patriarch’s Temple. He is also responsible for founding many Buddhist studies programs, holding regular meditation retreats, and workshops for the ordained Sangha as well as the laity. Chan Master Jinghui is one of the driving forces of Buddhism’s revival in modern China today. He is currently abbot of the Fourth Patriarch’s Temple, and holds several other prominent positions, including vice-president of the Chinese Buddhist Association and president of the Hebei Province Buddhist Association.

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