We respectfully acknowledge the following teachers and friends whose advice and assistance have made this book possible. In the order of our temporal association with them, they are: Dharma Master Lok-to; Rev. Ta-yi; Prof. Forrest G. Smith; Messrs. John Ironmount and Sang Lam; as well as Dr. Michael E. Moriarty and our consulting editor, Upasaka Harry Leong, both of whom spent numerous hours assisting us in many ways on this project.

This book is respectfully dedicated to two persons of special significance in our lives: Upasaka Nguyen Van By and Mrs. Mildred Ulrich. Uncle By will always be appreciated for his support of several branches of the Nguyen and Le-Trung families in post World War II Vietnam and Mrs. Ulrich for her sponsorship, directly and indirectly, of some threescore members of the extended Van Hien clan to these shores. Both are responsible, in great measure, for our successful integration in North America on the threshold of this new millennium.