ForeverMissed
His Life

A Final Goodbye to Steven Hsiaofeng Chen

Steve was born in Taipei, Taiwan, on December 13, 1961, the eldest son of three children. He went to National Taiwan University for graduate study in Electrical Engineering from 1987 to 1989, came to the United States to continue his study in1991. He acquired his PHD in Computer Science in 1996 at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois.

Steve was a loving husband of 22 years to his devoted wife, Heather; a dedicated father to his beloved daughter, Joy; a talented engineer at Oracle; an active volunteer and founding member of the CACCC board; current President of MBS and a mindful practitioner of his Buddhist faith. Being with Steve in the last months of his life was a gift of love, insight, courage and generosity to many of us. He helped us through this passage toward our own maturity.

What drew us to him and why Heather and Joy called him “A Simple Good Guy”?

Wisdom. Yes, he was very wise. In response to the question on searching for the meaning of life, he said, “no, no, for the experience of being alive, life itself is a journey to me.”

Zest. Yes, he loved to talk, not that he tried to talk anyone into anything. He talked people into belief and he talked about  the knightly virtues of chivalry: loyalty, sacrifice and redemption.

An avid reader, writer and a movie fan. Yes, he always had spirit that demonstrated his love for Joseph Campbell’s “The Power of Myth”, the heroic movie “Black Hawk Down”, and Lee Oau’s “Bejing Fa-Yuan Temple”.

Learning. Yes, he learned to face death, to acquiesce to death. Heather asked him if he was afraid of dying, he said, “No, no, not at all.” Witnessing his gorgeous serenity, he understood where he was heading.

Friendship. Yes, he acted out his nature with that enormous capacity for affection. When friends asked for reconciliation, he said, “part of friendship consisted in accepting each other’s shortcomings.”

What did he make of his religion? Steve, the most eager, always a step ahead of others, realized that only Buddha’s voice brought him salvation, "Pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional." His illness forced him to endure immensely. Yes, he understood it as the entire journey of his was nothing but a preparation of the soul. He said, “the source and the end always make a complete totality; there is no beginning and no end.”

Steve, 50, passed away peacefully on September 30, 2012 at 6:50 am.

曉峰行誼
 
陳曉峰居士,1961年12月13日生於臺灣台北,祖籍安徽,曉峰事親至孝,在家中排行老大,下有一弟一妹。1990年與賴怡慈成婚,家庭和睦。他學業優異,1987至1989年就讀於臺灣大學電機系碩士班,1991年赴美國伊利諾州西北大學攻讀電腦科學,於1996年獲頒博士學位。
 
曉峰於美國求學期間,參加大學舉辦之佛學社,繼如法師為當時之弘法師,亦是他後來的皈依證明師。曉峰質樸天成,心若赤子,深深認同菩薩捨我其誰的精神並力行之,尤其與印順導師之著作契機,特別喜歡中觀般若之思想。1996年應聘至加州工作,從此與菩提學會結緣;他是學會今年的會長,亦曾於2006年出任會長及2011年之副會長,並多次擔任學會董事。生前最後任職於Oracle公司。
 
曉峰喜好閱讀、電影、寫作,行文優美,文采極佳,長期經營部落格,讀者眾多,同時熱心公益及助人,歡喜布施。曾為美華慈心關懷聯盟之義工,擔任創會董事、安寧療護和翻譯等的工作,是典型的菩薩行人。他對妻子怡慈及女兒Joy的關愛無私且柔軟,妻女對他的形容就是「呆呆的好人」。
 
曉峰於2012年9月30日晨6時50分因病安詳往生。他曾在部落格寫下如是的話語:「看著外面明媚的陽光,想著『開始』與『結束』的相對並存性,當『開始』發生時,『結束』的可能性也早已潛藏而待發,反過來,『結束』發生時,也意味著新的『開始』,無限的可能也都在其中。」以如此的心靈深度,遠颺於新的生命旅程中,必有滿囊福智資糧相隨。