What Sparked the Human Interest in The Divine or The Supernatural?

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On Thursday April 17th, I visited the Hue Quang Buddhist Temple in Santa Ana, CA for an evening prayer service at 7:00 PM with a fellow student. This is a Vietnamese Buddhist temple, and we were the only people at this prayer service that did not speak vietnamese. Shoes were to be removed before entering the temple. The temple is an open room with a large white central buddha statue and two white statues on either side. One of a man, and one of a woman depicted touching her thumb and middle finger with her right hand, and pouring water out of a vase with the other, she is depicted with a child. The statues were lit with changing colors. Incense was burning and apples and oranges were stacked very carefully as an offerings. Upon arriving …show more content…
The members of the temple all wore light blue robes, but Hannah and I just wore conservative street clothes. What followed was pretty confusing, as it was all in Vietnamese, but we did have the help of our new friend. The first 40 or so minutes of the prayer, singing bowls were struck by the monks every so often, chimes were jingled— I think to denote different sections of the prayer,— and a monk at the front of the room kept a rhythm with a carved wooden percussion instrument and a mallet. The first few minutes, everyone knelt on their mat chanting/singing in unison with full, head-to-the-ground bowing interspersed throughout. After this, everyone sat crisscross on the mats and began to recite a prayer, either with their palms pressed together in front of their chest, or folded in their lap with thumbs touching and palms up, mimicking the buddha statue. Our friend instructed us to recite “A Di Đà Phật” in rhythm while the rest of people chanted in Vietnamese. This continued for some time. Following this section, everyone opened their books to a certain page and began to read in unison rhythmic chant from the text. Hannah and I continued our own chant. At about the 40 minute mark, everyone stood. Our guide told us that we would walk single-file and told us to sing a particular phrase along with them. I don’t remember what we were singing, but I was able to pick it up at the time, and I even

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