Lời giới thiệu: Chị Phí Minh Tâm pháp danh Quả Bình (Guo Ping) mất vừa được một năm, Báo Vajra Bodhi Sea (Kim Cang Bồ Đề Hải) của Chùa Vạn Phật số tháng 12/2004 có đăng bài viết dưới đây của một người bạn viết về chị. Xin kính chia sẽ cùng các anh chị thân hữu.


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In Memory of Upasika Guo Ping

by Chin Chin

English Translation by Chin Yu


For the past many-years, a middle-aged lady with long, curly hair, ever so peaceful and gentle, could often be seen at either the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas (CTTB) or Berkeley Buddhist Monastery (BBM) during Dharma Assemblies and Sutra lectures. Her Dharma name was Guo Ping. In the evening of December 12,2003, on the way home from CTTB, Upasika Guo Ping passed away in a car accident at the age of 54. The car she was riding in spun out of control due to the slippery road conditions caused by the rain. The week before her death, on a Saturday night, after the Sutra lecture at BBM, she gave some home-grown persimmons from her backyard to her Dharma friends and repeatedly advised them to wait until they were completely ripe before refrigerating them. Also, she eagerly helped others get rides to CTTB for the Amitabha Buddha recitation session. Her Dharma friends were shocked to learn of her sudden death before the persimmons were ripe. She is greatly missed.

xaloi2.jpg (60855 bytes) Upasika Guo Ping was born in Vietnam where she studied Buddhadharma. Her father was half Chinese. She came to the United States around 1981. According to her husband, she first went to the Vietnamese Tu Quang temple in San Francisco to listen to Dharma lectures, make offerings to the Triple Jewel, and teach the children there. 

She also went to another temple called Kim Son Monastery where she was known by her Dharma name of Dieu Bau. Several years later she met the Venerable Master Hua and took refuge with him under the Dharma name of Guo Ping. Her friends told her about BBM after it was founded in 1994. Then Guo Ping started coming to BBM with her family for Sutra lectures and Dharma Assemblies. A few years ago, together with a Dharma friend, she regularly brought meal offerings on Wednesdays. Furthermore, she made breakfast offerings to monastics at Alotawpyie Burmese temple in El Sobrante near her house. To her there was no distinction between the Mahayana and Theravada traditions. She was happy making offerings to the Triple Jewel whenever she had the opportunity. Guo Ping had also tried, although unsuccessfully, to assist a Vietnamese monk to establish a temple in East Bay area. This monk also attended her funeral services.

Her son said, "My mother loved to cook and often invited my classmates to our house to share our meals; they all liked her very much... . She was quite active in our community, our teachers from school, the florist and cashiers at grocery stores all knew her ... She got me out of her bed every day for school when I attended high school and community college... . Another thing I found strange that I didn't understand before was that she often fed the cats and dogs in our neighborhood. She told me they were pitiful. Now that she is gone, these animals still come to the house, so we continue to feed them." Her eldest daughter said, "My mother was very kind; even though I have my own family, she still cared so much about me... During family gatherings around the holidays, she was always busy preparing this and that, and made sure everyone was taken care of. She was always the last one to sit down to eat."

Her husband said, "Guo Ping was a vegetarian for many, many years and often tried to convince others to be vegetarian. She didn't force her family to eat vegetarian food. She always prepared two types of food for us. Our youngest daughter became vegetarian on her own three years ago. I could not be vegetarian in the beginning but eventually I became vegetarian also.... My wife also brought me to the Buddhadharma. She enthusiastically participated in activities at the temple and encouraged her family to do so. In the beginning I was her driver to and from the temple. Once we got there, I read my own books and didn't join in. After 15 years, I finally went in the BBM to listen to the Sutra lectures. I took refuge with the Triple Jewel more than one year ago and also took the Five Precepts."

One of her friends said: "She was an interesting person... very filial... very warm to her friends." Another Dharma friend said that she took Tai-Chi and drawing classes at the community college. She stopped her classes about 2 to 3 months before her passing, and when her teacher and friends asked the reason, she said she needed more time to recite Sutras and Mantras. She had made a vow to recite the Great Compassion Mantra 108 times a day. It was not easy in the beginning. Afterwards, a friend told her to recite 36 times each morning, afternoon and evening (counting twice on an 18-bead bracelet) completing a total of 108 times. In addition, she did the morning and evening recitation consistently.

xaloi.jpg (129011 bytes) From the above descriptions by her husband, children and friends, we can see that Guo Ping was a traditional housewife who was kind, easy to get along with and warm. 

She was a caring wife and mother and at the same time studied and cultivated the Buddhadharma. Under her constant, quiet influence, her family became vegetarian and took refuge with the Triple Jewel.

Copied from Vajra Bodhi Sea - Monthly Journal of Orthodox Buddhism - December 2004. p. 36-37