Part Two: Dharma Discourses

Chapter Four: Vision and Plans


6. In the thirty-fourth year of the Won-Buddhist Era, fourth month (April/May 1949), at the first graduation ceremony of the Yuil Academy, the Master delivered this admonition. “I regret that during the past three years you had to endure much hardship without receiving a satisfactory education. Even so, try to reflect over the course of our Order’s enterprises, from the early levee project to selling charcoal and confectionery, farming and stock raising, as well as running orchards and pharmacies. On a personal level, some worked at the spinning mill or the rubber factory. Hence, none of your forerunners could comfortably attend a three-month Sŏn retreat, let alone a three-year academy. In all enterprises, this is the typical sequence in their initial stage and is precisely the reason why those who come later have special reverence for their forerunners. The life of a religion is faith; the motive force of an enterprise is public-spiritedness. If you are equipped with just these two qualities, then even though you may be lacking in education, your future will be bright. Do not worry about lacking anything other than these two; do not trouble yourself to acquire anything other than these two. You have now completed the curriculum at the Academy, but your great learning is only beginning. Great learning is practice in the midst of work, where you practice while you work and work while you practice. Never forget even for a moment that each of your words and acts can have great consequences for the future activities of the Academy and the Order. Grounding yourselves on belief and dedication and on public-spiritedness, I hope you will exert yourselves at this ‘practice while working,’ and consummately accomplish the buddha’s practice and the buddha’s enterprise.”