Venerable Master Hsing Yun is known as the founder of the Fo Guang Shan, an order that promotes Humanistic Buddhism, emphasizing the integration of Buddhist practices into everyday life.
Master Hsing Yun also is known for his calligraphy works, which are popular around the world. When diabetes began to affect his vision and age created a trembling in his hands, Hsing was inspired to create an approach that has gained him even more respect: the one-stroke calligraphy method.
Sacramento State will host a collection of these works July 1-29 at both its Library Gallery and Gallery Annex.
While the University Library is temporarily closed this summer as it undergoes an asbestos abatement and encapsulation project, the work has been scheduled around the exhibit, allowing those wishing to see it to have safe, easy access to the galleries. In addition, signs have been placed around the campus to guide viewers to nearby parking and the gallery entrance.
A special opening ceremony will be held at 1 p.m. Friday, July 1. Regular gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The works have been brought to Sacramento by members of the local Fo Guang Shan Bodhi temple.
The opening festivities will include many activities related to the exhibit, such as a tea Zen ceremony, music, and do-it-yourself, one-stroke calligraphy printing.
Calligraphy has a long tradition in Buddhism, extending beyond the transcription of religious teachings and texts, with the drawing and viewing of calligraphy works used as a point of reflection and meditation.
Despite his physical limitations, Master Hsing Yun continues to create, now using just one dip of the brush and one continuous stroke to create his works. “Please look beyond my writing and see my heart,” he says. “Look for my endurance and the hopes for forming affinities.”
Observing calligraphy can bring happiness and peacefulness, says Venerable Ru Hsian, who is from Taiwan and oversees Sacramento’s temple. “You can learn from it because it has meaningful messages in it,” she says through her interpreter, Yee Kwong.
“It’s very soothing and very peaceful when you come to see it,” Yee adds. “The exhibition … can improve and purify the humanity and mind of people.”
For more information, visit csus.edu/sota/ulg or call (916) 278-4189. – Craig Koscho