Reflection, reverence, relief focus of Buddhist Dharma talk in Chelmsford

By JENDHA MUNI SOTH, Lowell Sun, Sept 5, 2005

CHELMSFORD, Mass. (USA) -- Serenity, relief from stress, devotion to religion. These are what drew more than 100 people Thursday to Trairatanaram Temple to listen to the Dharma talk given by Master Savong Buth, a Buddhist teacher from Cambodia.

The temple became very quiet when Master Buth arrived. The audience, predominantly Buddhist Cambodians, paid close attention from beginning to end. The first two hours focused on ?sin and merit,? ?bad and good,? ?poor and rich? ?ignorance and wisdom.?

The last hour of the session was open for questions.

Master Buth's visit to Lowell was sponsored by the Dharma Group and the Lowell Community Health Center/Metta Health Center, which includes the Elders Council of Cambodian Community Health 2010 Project.

?He's very well known around the world. His speech is very valuable, I hope many people take advantage of this,? said Sonith Peou, 57, who is a program director of Lowell Community Health Center/Metta Health enter.

He said the group sponsored Master Buth because he knows how to talk to people. Many Cambodians have post traumatic stress disorder since the Khmer Rouge, but Master Buth knows how to educate people to deal with everyday's living and reduce the stress and anxiety through Buddhism.

?This is a very rare occasion that he comes to us,? added Peou.

?I can't wait to listen to Master Buth's Dharma Talk,? Leangkry Meas, 50, of Lowell, said beforehand. Meas said she's been in the United States over 20 years, but never had an opportunity to meet Master

?Master Buth is the most peaceful person I've ever seen, his Dharma talk is very powerful,? said Yi Sok, 73 from Lynn.

Master Buth was born and raised in Battambang, Cambodia, and became a novice monk at age 20. After leaving the monkhood four years later, Master Buth continues to study Buddhism and spread his Buddhist teachings around the world. He's not only well known to Cambodian people in Cambodia, but to many Cambodians around the world, many of whom listen to his Dharma teachings on audio tapes.

Susanna Kao, 37 from Chelmsford, said Master Buth really touched her heart. She was listening to him over two hours already, but still didn't get enough.

?His teaching is so interesting and easy to understand,? Kao said.

Kao is currently working at Lowell Community Health Center as an outreach worker/Educator/Counseling & Testing. Many Cambodians hoped Master Buth could stay in Lowell longer so he could help educate more Cambodian people.

?His teaching really suits the Cambodian population around the world, especially among those who live outside of Cambodia,? said Sokhan Yang, 58, from Lowell, who also owns the Asian restaurant ?Petit Café' on Middlesex Street.Yang said he listens to Master Buth's teaching through audio tapes almost everyday. ?He always teaches people to be kind to each other and to be free from hatred.?

Master Buth will also be giving a talk at the Lowell Senior Center at 276 Broadway Street today from 3-6 p.m. in Khmer. It is free and open to the public. He will also be appearing on the Voice of Cambodian Children Radio program from 1-2 p.m. tomorrow on WUML at 91.5FM.