Hao Hao or Hoahaoism is a traditional Vietnamese religion founded in 1939 by Huỳnh Phú Sổ who came from the Mekong River Delta region in southern Vietnam. This traditional religion has its roots in Buddhism, its followers consider Huikutnyanh Phú Sổ to be a prophet, and Hòa Hảo is a continuation of the Buddhist teachings of the 19th century known as Bửu Sơn Kỳ Hương. The founders of the tradition are considered by the followers of Hòa Hảo to be the living Buddha. This belief is one of the various faiths held by many Vietnamese, apart from the Vietnamese, Buddhist, Catholic, Protestant, Caodic, Islamic, Hindu, Jewish and Baha’i beliefs.
Huỳnh Phú Sổ as the founder of Hoa Hao, was born in 1919 in Hoa Hao village, in southern Vietnam, Chau Doc province, close to the Cambodian border. Prophet Huỳnh was the eldest son of the couple Huynh Cong Bo and Le Thi Nham, both of his parents were known to be honest figures. When he was 15 years old, Huỳnh dropped out of school because of an illness, and it happened until he was 21 years old. In 1939, while visiting the sacred mountains That Son and Ta Lon, Huỳnh had an enlightenment.
Then on the 18th day of the 5th month of Hare (1939), he went on a mission to spread his influence. He began to heal various ailments which generally no one could cure. Huỳnh uses simple ingredients in its medicine, such as green leaves and pure water. These events made local doctors as well as traditional healers amazed at Huỳnh’s abilities. Since then, various groups, such as writers, lawyers, and public figures have begun to recognize his supernatural talents.
Since 1939, Huỳnh made a prediction that there would be war and suffering in the world, including Vietnam. Regarding the prophecy, he urged all mankind to abandon their vices and return to the righteous path of virtue. While treating many sick people, Huỳnh also preached to many people so that people should live well and improve themselves.
The main teachings that Huỳnh conveyed to the people who heard his sermon, were concern for a realistic, and contemporary, considerations. He pursued the modernization method of self-improvement, which was previously considered passive in Buddhism. Thus, Huỳnh was considered a major revolutionary in the religious field, because he could change the passive Buddhist teachings that had been practiced so far in Vietnam.
Huỳnh Phú Sổ is called Master Buddha (Phật thầy in Vietnamese), because his teachings are based on Buddhist teachings. These followers of Haohaoism believe that they were born to protect humans as well as Vietnam, so they can escape from all kinds of suffering. One of the unique and most important things about this belief is that their faith will appear when they prioritize giving assistance or alms to the poor, rather than performing religious rituals or performing Haohaoism rituals themselves.
At religious ceremonies, a plain brown cloth becomes the family altar while they are praying. There are flowers, incense and fresh water, which are the main containers used when they worship at home. Meanwhile, when they are not at home, they can pray facing the West, then offer prayers to Buddha.
Ha Hảo followers are required to attend communal worship on the 1st and 15th of the lunar month. In addition, they are also expected to be present on Buddhist holy days in general. In their daily life, they often make offerings of food at the temple, and also often ask for divination services about their lives. Meanwhile, for funeral ceremonies and wedding customs, it is a little more complicated and requires expensive costs.
There are at least 4 teaching books owned by the Hoa Hao people:
• Sấm Giảng Thi Văn Giáo Lý, a book of lectures on the teachings of the prophet Huỳnh.
• TU RÈN TÂM TRÍ, the book cultivates the mind.
• Cách Tu Hiền Và Sự Ăn Ở Của Một Người Bổn Đạo, a book about how to deal with someone.
• SƠ LƯỢC VỀ PHẬT GIÁO HÒA HẢO, a summary book of the Buddhist teachings of Hoa Hao.
According to the 2019 Population Census statistics, there are around 970,000 people (about 1%, out of 96,208,984 people (2019)) who are Hoa Hao Buddhists, making it the 4th largest religion in Vietnam, after Catholicism, Buddhism and Protestantism. Until now, Hao Hao’s followers have spread throughout Vietnam, and have carried out diaspora abroad. Apart from Vietnam, several Hoa Hao communities have houses of worship in several countries, such as in the United States, particularly in California and Texas. Then there is in Australia, especially in New South Wales. Come on, get other interesting information from indonesiar.com.
Source : wikipedia