On June 13th, 2010, the New York chapter of Buddha’s Light International Association (BLIA) held the Three Acts of Goodness Festival in Flushing, NY. We had inspiring performances by our Boy and Girl Scouts, Chinese School, Young Adult Division and many talented guests. Numerous local representatives of various faiths attended the festival to share their perspective on our theme. New York State Assemblywoman Grace Meng and New York City Councilman Peter Koo also attended the festivities to support our message. So what exactly are the Three Acts of Goodness? They are to do good deeds, speak good words and think good thoughts.

Doing good deeds means cultivation of our bodies. This means not killing, not stealing, not committing sexual misconduct and not harming others. It means doing kind acts to benefit others, performing virtuous acts, beautiful acts and beneficial acts. This is how we use our bodies to do good things.

Speaking good words means cultivation of our speech. This means not lying, not using double-tongued speech, frivolous speech or harsh speech. It means speaking compassionately, rationally, wisely and truthfully. A person who cultivates speech speaks words of goodness, and a truthful speaker, a realistic speaker, who tells it like it is, does not say anything fantastic and is not a liar.

Thinking good thoughts means cultivation of our minds. This means not having suspicious, jealous, greedy, hateful or ugly thoughts. It means having thoughts that are compassionate, joyful, determined, kind and devoted. This is how we use our minds to think good thoughts.

We would like to thank all our special guests and our volunteers for making this beautiful event possible. We hope to continue interfaith dialogue to spread understanding and cooperation. After all, the message behind the Three Acts of Goodness is common to people of all faiths – to show love and compassion to all people.