I found a cool series of Buddhist videos by Dharma-Drum Mountain in Taiwan. These are video lectures by the late Venerable Sheng-Yen (聖嚴, 1930–2009), who was a major Buddhist teacher there. Taiwanese Buddhism has a lot energy and talent right now because so many monks fled China after the 1950’s and all came to live on Taiwan, so there’s a lot of good resources there. My favorite monk, Yin-Shun, lived in Taiwan toward the end of his life and helped revive Buddhism there.
Anyhow, Sheng-Yen is another such famous monk, and here he gives a great lecture (with English subtitles) on the different ways you can make a Buddhist altar:
The advice here is very helpful, and applies to people of different lifestyle and backgrounds. I like the fact that he didn’t impose a single way of doing it, but encouraged people to adapt based on their situation. What’s important is good intention, not form. But he does offer helpful advice about best-practices too.
I’ll be posting some other videos by Sheng-Yen that I liked soon. Enjoy!
P.S. It’s fun to listen spoken Chinese. It reminds me of the classes I took in high school. I don’t known much Chinese anymore, but I can still recognize some words by Ven. Sheng-Yen. 🙂