Related Article: Statement From the World Peace Prize Awarding Council
Related Article: Statement From the World Peace Prize Awarding Council
I’m 72 years old this year and have been learning Buddhism for 23 years. On the surface, I appeared to be a ‘senior’ Buddhist disciple. As a matter of fact, I was spending those years aimlessly pursuing the formality of Buddhism and carelessly allowed time to elapse until 6 years ago when I realized what authentic Buddhism was by participating in an event of chanting sutras for the deceased.
I used to consider myself as a Buddhist practitioner who recites the holy name of Buddha. I managed to play common dharma instruments and chant the verses of praise despite the fact that I was illiterate. I became a leader of the laypeople. I did my best in making charitable contributions to Buddhist temples. I jumped on every opportunity to follow dharma teachers to participate in Buddhist affairs and help others together with a group of laypeople. While I thought I accumulated merits from what I did, I benefitted little from my Buddhist practices.
There came a karmic affinity when I was invited to do chanting for a Buddhist brother who passed away. Buddhist brothers and sisters from various areas gathered together to do the chanting continuously day and night for the deceased. However, their chanting was quite different from mine. What was it? I wondered. Then, I witnessed an auspicious feat where relics were found after the cremation. I have helped in many chanting occasions for deceased practitioners and yet, have never seen anything like this before. After contemplating on the feat, I came to realize that the relics were manifestations of the achievements of the deceased Buddhist brother. Who was his master? I wanted to learn from him as well!
The thought stayed in my mind even after the event. I found out by asking around that the Buddhist brother listened to the prerecorded dharma discourses expounded by H. H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. He accumulated great merits and achieved accomplishment by practicing the dharma in accordance with the teachings. I couldn’t wait to visit a center to participate in listening respectfully to the Buddha Dharma expounded by H. H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. The Buddha expounded the Dharma comprehensively and thoroughly, which really fascinated me. I embraced myself with the teachings of the Dharma, which quenched my thirst, satisfied my hunger, and seemingly created a sea of Buddha Dharma for me to dive in. I gained great joy from listening to the dharma. Therefore, I called and invited my younger brothers and sisters to visit the center. They listened to the Dharma expounded by H. H. Dorje Chang Buddha III with my assistance. My two younger sisters, two sisters-in-law, and I all passed the exam and became Masters of Dharma-Listening Sessions. Together as a family, we learned Buddha Dharma and cultivated ourselves to benefit living beings.
The teachings from Namo H. H. Dorje Chang Buddha III allowed me to understand the relation between the cause and the effect and how if there was a cause, there would be always its effect. In the past, I didn’t understand the true meaning of the Dharma and thought self-cultivation meant chanting sutras. Cultivating oneself means that practitioners take the Buddha as their role model and mind their physical, verbal and mental karma by following those of the Buddha’s to modify their own words and actions and to correct their habitual behaviors. I benefitted a lot from listening to the Buddha Dharma. I not only practiced it but also promoted it. With the collaboration among a lot of people over the years, more than twenty Buddhist centers of various sizes were established. There were more than twenty group cultivation sessions held each month. I was grateful for the empowerment from Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, which caused the positive karmic affinities of the living beings to come together so the Bodhi seeds were planted and waited to blossom one day.
Life is impermanent and time awaits no one. I respectfully listen to the Buddha Dharma every day. I oblige myself in leading everyone to the Buddha Dharma listening sessions and to learn from precious books such as the ‘The Supreme and Unsurpassable Mahamudra of Liberation” and ‘Learning from the Buddha” regardless of inclement weather conditions such as heavy rain or snow. It requires determination and persistence on the path of self-cultivation. There were times that some Buddhist brothers and sisters dissipated, regressed, or strayed away from following the Dharma. I would bring it to their attention and advise them on that. Together with other Buddhist brothers and sisters, we did our best in chanting sutras for the deceased whenever we got the chance to participate. We donated the proceeds from those events to releasing living beings.
I also advocated at home the practices of no-kill and releasing living beings.
There was a time that a friend bought us a box of crabs. My husband was happy and ready to indulge himself in having a meal of those crabs. I asked him nicely to release them back to the wild when I sensed that they were about to suffer but he refused. Every living being was my family. How could I not do anything when they were about to be cooked?
My husband asked me to make dinner around dinner time. I laid in bed crying with my limbs moving randomly in the air. My husband was in shock and asked me what happened. I rolled myself around in bed even more and told him that countless crabs were asking me to save them and how they pinched me when I didn’t agree to it, which hurt very bad. I asked him to release those crabs to save me for the sake of me being his wife. He agreed reluctantly to release them after he saw how much I suffered. My “sufferings’ were instantly alleviated. It was my way of improvising a rescue plan for those crabs. It was also a result of listening respectfully to the Buddha Dharma that I started to have benevolence and compassion, refraining myself from killing lives and protecting them.
Time flies. The result over the past six years of learning Buddha Dharma and cultivating myself has surpassed that of the past sixty years of dream-like lifestyle. In comparison with the haze of confusion in the past, the goal of my cultivation has great clarity, which is to benefit living beings and end the cycle of birth and death. I’m thankful for the opportunity of learning orthodox Buddha Dharma. I’m determined to diligently cultivate myself to achieve liberation to benefit myself and others. It would be very foolish of me not to take advantage of this great opportunity to learn the Buddha Dharma and cultivate myself, wouldn’t it?
This true example is the personal experience of Mr. Tsai who lives in Donggang Township of Pingtung County, told by himself. He is 41 years old this year. He owns a metal processing factory and also does the business of yacht renting. His financial situation is quite good and he also has a very happy family. Because he has grown up by the sea, he is very good at swimming. In the past, he rescued quite a few people who either unintentionally fell into water or were trying to commit suicide. Therefore, he can be regarded as a warm-hearted kind person. However, he also is addicted to a hobby, which is his passion for diving and shooting fish in his spare time. He said that when shooting the fish, he mostly aimed at the fish’s belly. This is because other parts of the fish have thick and hard muscles and thus it is not easy to penetrate through the fish. The fish has a better chance to escape. If the fish is shot at the belly, its intestine would quickly burst out while the fish is struggling. In that case, it will be very easy to catch the fish. For several years, he always engaged in such activities as a favorite pastime and did not feel anything improper in doing so at all.
On the 20thday of the 12thmonth of the lunar calendar of 1981, an unfortunate incident finally occurred. On that day, his friend drove a motorcycle to take him to Wandan Town to handle some matter. At 7 pm when they were on the way of returning to Donggang, their motorcycle had a face-on collision with an oncoming truck. After falling to the ground, Mr. Tsai was run over by the truck’s rear wheel on his abdomen. Right there, he burst open in the middle and all his entrails gushed out. The bloody wound was too miserable to look at. At that time, although Mr. Tsai had suffered such a severe injury, his mind was still quite clear. He saw that the miserable wound he had suffered was almost the same as the situation of the fish being shot at the belly. Then, he immediately realized how painful, tormented, sad, and angry the fish’s feeling was at the time of being shot!
Right after, his friends immediately took him to several well-known big hospitals in the city of Kaohsiung one by one. But the hospitals all declined to admit him due to the severity of his injury. Mr. Tsai could not stand their lack of morality of saving life and scolded them furiously. Later, he was brought to Surgeon Chiu’s clinic, where he was accepted after repeated earnest requests. After being treated for one week, he was still not out of the critical condition. He was then transferred to Surgeon Xiao’s clinic to take another chance. With the doctor’s meticulous treatment and care, his life was finally saved. Altogether, he had five surgeries, with three in the abdomen, one at the perineum, and one on his right thigh. The treatments had to reconnect his intestines, ureter, and the broken thigh bone. He was hospitalized for seven months before returning home to continue recuperating.
His experience of getting his life back from the near-death ordeal was regarded as a miracle by many medical professionals as well as his family members and relatives. People all believed that this probably had to do with Mr. Tsai’s good deeds of saving the lives of several people in the past. However, the unfortunate fact is that one who saves people but on the other hand, also kills fish for enjoyment still cannot escape from the due retribution. This incident is truly worthy of pondering deeply by people in the world to introspect themselves.
#causality #retribution #buddhism #suffering #killing #fishes
This true example from real life occurred in a mountain region not far from where I live. There is a person who used to be very disgusted by the presence of ants. Every time when he saw many ants gathering in a corner or moving on the ground, he would lit a fire to burn them all without leaving even one alive. He enjoyed doing that for several years. As a result, countless ants had been burned to death by him. An unfortunate incident eventually happened. One day, the gas pipe in his home started to leak due to long-term tear and wear and lack of repair and caused an explosion while he turned on the gas. Being scared and startled, he ran over to shut off the gas. However, the fire was very strong and the temperature was very high. He suffered serious burn injury throughout his body. Due to the serious and urgent situation, he was sent to different major hospitals for emergency treatment. The doctors said at that time, more than 40% of his skin was scorched and his life was at risk. Therefore, he must stay in a large hospital for long-term treatment. It is a known fact that the treatment of scalded or scorched injuries is the most painful and risky process, which can be called torturing of hell occurring in the human world. Even if he is lucky to get his life back in the future, the skin will still have difficult-to-remove scars and the patient will have serious sequela. Therefore, what he went through was truly a horrible experience.
#causality #retribution #buddhism #suffering #killing #ants
During my childhood, I always heard my elder-generation relatives saying, “We had better not to marry our daughters out. Otherwise, they may have a bad fate.”
I was always puzzled by their saying so. As I grew up in life, I saw the way of life between husband and wife among my elder-generation relatives. Their life is busy at home and busy with their children every day. After getting married, the husband and wife lack common interests and their relationship gradually turns into a relation like two parallel lines within the family. All day long they turn around and are occupied by the necessities of daily life. I gradually understood why the elder relatives would say so. Upon stepping into society, I cautiously remembered the advices from my elder relatives and even feared leading such a life.
I first met my companion during a social occasion. We did not immediately establish a contact after that. Sometime later, we connected again. I was just in a period of feeling lost in my life, having worked in society for two to three years. Because of lack of care to myself, warning signs appeared in my health. Seeing my classmates at school stepping into family life, I admire them very much. However, I also recalled the words spoken by my elder relatives about caution against a bad fate through marriage. I retreated again.
One day, an elder relative told me that everything is due to causality. Our getting ill is also due to causality. My mind was shaken by the words. It seemed that I found the answers to the puzzle I had toward my own life and to the warning signs in my health. While thinking of how to solve these issues, I went to the gate of a famous temple and stayed there for about five minutes. During this brief period of time, I recalled my experience from childhood when I was led by my elder relatives to come and chant sutras. I was told that if I follow the crowd to pay homage, I will be blessed. That experience did not leave me with a good impression. I did not feel that doing so could solve my issues of causality. So, I turned around and left.
Six months later, I met my companion again. That day, he invited me to go to the Buddha hall to respectfully listen to the recorded Dharma discourses expounded by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. The Dharma discourse we listened to is “Do You Clearly Believe in the Law of Cause and Effect?” What I heard was like a round of loud thunder. I finally found the answer. Everything I have today is due to the causes I planted in the past. Although I did not have a complete understanding yet, I no longer had fear and felt lost. I also gradually knew what I should do through respectfully reading “What Is Cultivation?” expounded by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. The following passages from this Dharma expounded by His Holiness the Buddha caused me to benefit deeply, “Cultivation is cultivating the increase of good karma and cultivating the avoidance of bad karma. It is increasing good karmic conditions, planting good causes, and reaping good effects. It is avoiding the increase of bad karmic conditions, not planting bad causes, and avoiding the reaping of bad effects.” “The Law of Cause and Effect does not err. It cannot be eliminated. To say that it can is to take a nihilistic point of view. Hence, we can only build a wall of good karma, which is like building a retaining wall. This wall of good karma has the effect of blocking us from our evil karma. Thus, only through learning from the Buddha, cultivating the conduct of the Buddha, and ultimately becoming a Buddha can we thoroughly liberate ourselves from the karma (cause and effect) that binds us to the cycles of reincarnations. “
In 2014 we decided to get married and have our honeymoon in the United States to attend Buddhist events. We became husband and wife under such karmic conditions. Because we are respectfully listening to the recorded Dharma discourses expounded by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III together, we have the same idea on many things and mutually have a lot of accommodations and understandings. Such an outcome completely broke the prophecy of having a bad fate from a marriage that I heard in my childhood.
I am grateful to the compassionate blessing from H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. That enabled me to find my life companion. On the other hand, my companion caused me to establish my karmic connection with the true Dharma of Tathagatas.
I am grateful to H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III!
Buddhist Disciple: Duanfama, in prostration
I prostrate to Namo H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III!
Namo H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III!
Namo H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III!
Published: September 25, 2017 at 5:48p.m.
A 5-year-old boy riding in a car suffered injuries when his father hit a sign in Covina on Monday.
“We believe (the driver) fell asleep,” Covina police Lt. Trevor Gaumer said.
The solo crash happened near the corner of Second Avenue and School Street around 7:30 a.m.
Gaumer said a car southbound on Second drifted and hit the concrete base of a sign at the H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III Cultural and Art Museum, 170 E. School St.
He said the driver, a 27-year-old Covina man, wasn’t injured. A helicopter transported the driver’s son to a hospital.
#HHDorjeChangBuddhaIII #DorjeChangBuddhaIII #DorjeChangBuddha