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Paper Cutting Art Workshop
On February 17th, Huilan Gao, a honorary member of the Chinese American Art Association, held a workshop for one hundred twenty-eight people at New Jersey Buddhist Cultural Center (NJBCC) in South Plainfield.

Participants of this event were divided into two groups for a guided exhibition tour led by Ms. Gao and her student Xinyi Huang. Gao explained to the audience the process of completing a Chinese paper cutting piece. She starts by drawing out her composition on a large sheet of paper, combining different patterns together. Then she rotates between the use of scissors, a carving knife, and small self-made tools to accomplish a complicated piece of work.

After Gao did a demonstration, creating six butterflies in a circle, everyone had a chance to experiment on their own by cutting along lines that Gao drew on pre-folded red paper. Within half an hour, everyone had accomplished their own pieces of artwork to share with each other.

Ray Winnicki, a member of the BLIA study group, has been participating in BLIA activities for many years. He thoroughly enjoyed this workshop. Not only is Chinese paper cutting a good exercise for the fine motor skills of elderly people, but it is also good training in mindfulness. It helped Ray to slow down and reflect on the beauty of art and life.

Gao thanks Buddha Light International Association for providing her with the opportunity to share her beloved Chinese cultural paper cutting art with the world. From Los Angeles to Paris, and Toronto to New York, BLIA members have given her the warmest welcome and support. Today in NJ, the final stop of her 2019 trip, she is grateful to be at another home away from home.

Buddhism Knowlege Test and App

The best way to learn is to have fun while learning. On 1/27, 80 participants led by Venerable Churhchan of New Jersey Buddhist Culture Center downloaded the Buddhism learning app and had a great time together.

Venerable Churhchan said this is probably the very first Buddhist exam taken via apps. She would like all of us to enjoy learning Buddhism. Buddhism is like light and it covers everything. However we have to be willing to accept it before we can understand and apply it. There will always be friction amongst people. We can¡¦t ask others not to complain, but we can give ourselves the opportunity to learn from the frictions. She emphasized application of Buddhism is the most important. Only with a calm attitude in learning Buddhism, our wisdom will ascend.

Through this special app learning and exam, everyone was encouraged to dive deeper into Buddhism. Using the app, constant applying Buddhism to our lives, and enjoying being a Buddhist was the purpose of this Buddhism exam.

Everyone had a great time with the app and claimed they will continue to play with it at home. David Chang said this is an app for both education and entertainment. It kept the players engaged one game after another. The app is great. Sue Chang expressed this is a terrific app that blended learning and fun together. This app of Fo Guangzhou Shan was designed to use modern technology to bring forth Buddhism learning.

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