This is an example of the Buddhist altar that I have back at home in Los Angeles, California. I do not have a copy of the one I actually have, so I am using an example. The family members from my father's side have always been devoted Buddhists. My grandmother's mother was probably the first to practice Buddhism, but it could gone back earlier than that. Anyways, I am guessing that my paternal side of the family started practicing Buddhism in the late 1800s. When my father married my mother and they immigrated into the United States, there was a clash in religious viewpoints. My mother, in her effort to assimilate into the western culture, converted to Christianity, while my father remained Buddhist. These religious differences, although interesting to watch unfold, do take a toll on the family because they can lead to serious arguments in the family. However, like a lot of second generation Asian Americans, I like how I get to experience two different sets of cultures: the Chinese, eastern one and the American, western one.
– Yue Yue (Sammy)