There are so many beautiful, powerful and life changing lessons you can learn from studying Buddhism and from reading many of Buddha’s quotes.
Here are 20 Life Changing Lessons from Buddha:
1. Love heals all things. “Hatred does not cease by hatred, but only by love; this is the eternal rule.”
2. It’s not what you say but what you do that defines you. “A man is not called wise because he talks and talks again; but if he is peaceful, loving and fearless then he is in truth called wise.”
“A dog is not considered a good dog because he is a good barker. A man is not considered a good man because he is a good talker.”
3. The secret of good health is to live fully in the NOW. “Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”
“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, nor to worry about the future, but to live the present moment wisely and earnestly.”
4. Words have the power to both hurt and heal. “Words have the power to both destroy and heal. When words are both true and kind, they can change our world.”
5. Let it go and it will be yours forever. “You only lose what you cling to.”
6. No one can walk your path for you. “No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path.”
7. Happiness never decreases by being shared. “Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.”
8. Be kind to all. “Resolve to be tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant with the weak and wrong. Sometime in your life, you will have been all of these.”
“Have compassion for all beings, rich and poor alike; each has their suffering. Some suffer too much, others too little.”
“Teach this triple truth to all: A generous heart, kind speech, and a life of service and compassion are the things which renew humanity.”
9. Don’t believe everything you are told to believe. “Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”
10. As you THINK so shall you be “All that we are is the result of what we have thought: it is founded on our thoughts and made up of our thoughts. If a man speak or act with an evil thought, suffering follows him as the wheel follows the hoof of the beast that draws the wagon…. If a man speak or act with a good thought, happiness follows him like a shadow that never leaves him.”
11. Let go of fear. “The whole secret of existence is to have no fear. Never fear what will become of you, depend on no one. Only the moment you reject all help are you freed.”
12. The truth has a way of always leaking out. “Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.”
13. Control your mind or it will control you. “To enjoy good health, to bring true happiness to one’s family, to bring peace to all, one must first discipline and control one’s own mind. If a man can control his mind he can find the way to Enlightenment, and all wisdom and virtue will naturally come to him.”
“It is a man’s own mind, not his enemy or foe, that lures him to evil ways.”
14. Doubt separates. Trust unites. “There is nothing more dreadful than the habit of doubt. Doubt separates people. It is a poison that disintegrates friendships and breaks up pleasant relations. It is a thorn that irritates and hurts; it is a sword that kills.”
15. Nobody is more deserving of your love than you yourself are. “You can search throughout the entire universe for someone who is more deserving of your love and affection than you are yourself, and that person is not to be found anywhere. You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”
16. Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment. “It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles. Then the victory is yours. It cannot be taken from you, not by angels or by demons, heaven or hell.”
17. Let go of attachment. “To live a pure unselfish life, one must count nothing as one’s own in the midst of abundance.”
18. Choose your friends wisely. “An insincere and evil friend is more to be feared than a wild beast; a wild beast may wound your body, but an evil friend will wound your mind.”
19. There is no way to happiness. Happiness is the way. “There is no path to happiness: happiness is the path.”
20. Love. Live. Let go. “In the end these things matter most: How well did you love? How fully did you live? How deeply did you let go?”
The monkey king in Journey to the West was such a thrilling, fascinating, and happy memory in my childhood. I have read the books, comic booklets, and watched the cartoon movies about it many times. The one I liked the most is “The Monkey King makes an Uproar in Heaven”. It ignited my imagination. I wished I could fly on the clouds just like the Monkey King.
The Monkey King is born on Flower Fruit Mountain from a stone egg that forms from an ancient rock created by the coupling of Heaven and Earth. He first distinguishes himself by bravely entering the Water Curtain Cave on the mountain; for this feat, his monkey tribe gives him the title of “Handsome Monkey King (美猴王).” After seeing a fellow monkey die because of old age, he decides to travel around the world to seek the Tao, and find a way to be able to live forever. He eventually found the “Grand Master of Bodhi (菩提祖師),” who taught him the 72 heavenly methods of transformation and a “sumersault cloud” which allows him to travel 108,000 chinese kilometer, almost instantaneously. The Grand Master also give him a name Sun Wukong. Sun is the Sir name, Wukong means “Awakened to Emptiness”.
After angering several gods and coming to the attention of the Jade Emperor, he is given a minor position in heaven as the Keeper of Horses (弼馬溫) so they can keep an eye on him. When Sun realizes that he was given the lowest position in heaven and is not considered a full-fledged god, he becomes very angry. Upon returning to his mountain, he puts up a flag and declares himself the “Great Sage Equal to Heaven (齊天大聖).” The Jade Emperor dispatches celestial soldiers to arrest Sun Wukong, but none succeed.
The Jade Emperor has no choice but to appoint him to be the guardian of the heavenly peach garden. The different varieties of peach trees in the garden bear fruit every 3,000, 6,000, and 9,000 years, and eating their flesh will bestow immortality and other gifts, so Sun Wukong eats nearly all of the ripe peaches. Later, after fairies who come to collect peaches for Xi Wangmu‘s heavenly peach banquet inform Sun Wukong he is not invited and make fun of him, he once again begins to cause trouble in Heaven, stealing heavenly wine from the peach banquet and eating Laozi‘s pills of immortality. He defeats an army of 100,000 celestial troops, led by the Four Heavenly Kings, Erlang Shen, and Nezha.
Eventually, the Jade Emperor appeals to the Buddha, who seals Wukong under a mountain called Five Elements Mountain after the latter loses a bet regarding whether he can leap out of the Buddha’s hand in a single somersault. Sun Wukong is kept under the mountain for 500 years and cannot escape because of a seal that was placed on the mountain. He is later set free when Tang Sanzang comes upon him during his pilgrimage and accepts him as a disciple.
When I grew up, I started my own journey in searching the truth and meaning of life and universe. I dabbled in different religions. Finally I became a buddhist. There were many supernormal manifestations in buddhist Sutras. Buddhas, Bodhisattvas and holy venerable ones, demonstrated much much more powers than the monkey king. Such as stories of Shariputra’s action power by wisdom, Mahamaudgalyayana’s supernatural power of going a long distance in a shot time, Master Mi Hong’s trip from Shigatse to ChengDu, etc…. In Buddhism teaching, every disciple who has received initiation has the potential to quickly obtain supernormal dharma powers through practice. One has the potential to easily assume an infinite variety of forms and obtain good worldly fortune.
In the dharma discourse Learning from Buddha, imparted by H.H.Dorje Chang Buddha III. I learned there is a Buddha Dharma called “Fine Horse Traversing the Sky Stepping on Clouds”. When a qualified disciple practice this Dharma, he can fly in the sky. Here is the true account of a fast-flying buddhist nun.
(Reported from Los Angeles) In September 2013, an event of supernatural phenomenon occurred in Los Angeles. Scientists have not been able to explain it. This was about a 49-year old Buddhist nun named Jian Hui, a disciple of H.H.Dorje Chang Buddha III, flying at a speed of 700 km per hour.
This event happened at a Buddhist assembly for beseeching auspiciousness, favorable weather, eliminating disasters, and increasing good fortune. The more than 50 attendees are all famous Buddhist figures. At the time, the ceremonial process required chanting a sutra and burning a letter of petition every 10 minutes. When the fifth letter of petition was to be burned, it was discovered that this letter of petition had been lost by this nun named Jian Hui. She was very sad and could not keep her from crying. Because the assembly could not be stopped and the steps of chanting sutras and burning letters of petition must be followed in the predefined order, it was decided that Jian Hui was to go to Hua Zang Si’s Southern-California satellite monastery located in Monterey Park to get this letter of petition. Some time had passed since Jian Hui left. People became very anxious and they called the satellite monastery to ask when the letter of petition can be brought back. The nuns at that monastery passed the phone to Jian Hui. Jian Hui was quite angry on the phone and said, “Don’t make a fuss! I will be back as soon as possible!” Sure enough, within three minutes after putting down the phone, Jian Hui returned to the site of the ceremony from the monastery that is 12 kilometers away. People at the site were all stunned. A nun at the site named Zheng Hui was very surprised and called the monastery to inquire the whereabouts of Jian Hui. The reply from the monastery was that Jian Hui left just three minutes ago. Further verification later also revealed that, after the phone conversation, Jian Hui also spent time to teach people chanting mantras before leaving for the site of the assembly. Based on the calculation that subtracted the time of delay, Jian Hui traveled this distance of 12 kilometers within at most one minute.
Zheng Hui planned to write this event in a book. To verify the facts, she went to the monastery to talk to the nuns there. They all confirmed, “When you called and said that she had returned to your place, it was just a very short while after she had left.” Zheng Hui then asked Zheng Xue, the nun who handed the phone to Jian Hui, where she was at the time. Zheng Xue took this question as distrusting her and was very upset. She kneeled down in front of the statue of Amitabha Buddha and took an oath against heavy consequences to swear that she received the phone call at the monastery and handed the phone to Jian Hui in person inside the Buddha hall of the monastery. If she told a lie, she is willing to descend into the hell realm. Zheng Hui also took an oath against heavy consequences to swear that, within three minutes after her phone conversation with Jian Hui, Jian Hui returned to the site of the assembly. She is also willing to descend into the hell realm if what she said is untrue. Moreover, eminent Buddhist monks including Gar Tongstan IV Ciren Gyatso, Kaichu, Akou Lamo, Shi Miao Kong, Shi Long Hui, Shi Jue Hui, Shi Kui Zhi and others also completely confirmed from their respective personal presences and witnesses at the two locations that the above event was completely true.
Buddhism from Sakyamuni Buddha has been propagating in the world for more than 2,000 years and has evolved into various sects and schools that emphasize different principles and customs. Patriarchs, eminent monastics, and great virtuous ones all state that they themselves possess the best teachings and dharmas. Each flaunts the ability to teach people to eventually attain accomplishment and liberation. The freedom from birth and death in Buddhism that entails one’s ability to control one’s birth and death freely has always been a legend.
Then, what are the results? Facts showed that, in the process of seeking liberation, very few people actually become accomplished in history. On the contrary, very many people did not attain accomplishment through practicing their dharmas. Examples of those who attained prominently well-known accomplishments include Bodhidharma, Hui Neng, Hanshan, and others. In more recent times, there were Xu Yun, Hui Ming, Sheng Qing, and other elderly dharma masters. Of course, there were also Guru Padmasambhava, Master Tsongkhapa, Master Karmapa, Venerable Atisa, Venerable Suchandra, and others. However, the fact is that such accomplished holy virtuous ones are so rare. Especially during the last 100 years or so, the curernt dharma-ending era becomes more penetrating and more deeply rooted. Ture dharma of the Tathagata has almost become lost from the lineages. Even leading figures of eminent monastics and great virtuous ones of the modern time with worldwide reputations had to pass away amid sufferings at the end of one’s life, unable to end the cycle of birth and death and with no accomplishment to speak of.
H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III brought the great dharmas of Tathagatas to the human world and has restored the original teachings and dharmas of SaKyamuni Buddha. His Holiness the Buddha continues the lifeline of the wisdom of Buddhas and also leads people to the Buddhist principles and ways that deepen and facilitate cultivators’ accomplishment. Examples are The Supreme and Unsurpassable Mahamudra of Liberation, holy inner-tantric initiations of dharmas of state practice, incomparable rules and systematic ways of cultivation, and supreme and expedient dharmas leading to accomplishment. Such teachings and dharmas are unprecedented by any holy ones in history and cannot be exhaustively mentioned or described.
The accomplishments of H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III at the pinnacles of the five vidyas and the holy realization of His Holiness the Buddha have all been widely known as real facts in the world. However, what is intimately relevant to us is the abilities of the Buddha in teaching people to become accomplished. Only this is the utmost important matter! Facts from actual practices show that people taught by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III attained prominent accomplishments.
At year 2018, a disciple of H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III, Dharma King Gar Tongstan Ciren Gyatso who was the chairman of the World Buddhism Association Headquarters, demonstrated the world-astounding record of becoming free from birth and death!
Dharma King Gar Tongstan paid respect to and learned from many famous figures of Buddhism. Since he paid homage to and became a disciple of H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III in 1995, his experience was like having found the most precious and rarest treasure. It was exactly like what Geshe Luosang Zhenzhou, who was the sole Larampa Geshe among the Han Chinese people, said in an interview with news media that his earlier experience of learning Buddhism for sixty years could not compare to what he learned from H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III in one day. Can you imagine what these words entail!
After having learned the cultivation and dharmas transmitted by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III, Dharma King Gar Tongstan gave up all the dharmas that he had learned before and did not get effects from and dedicated himself to practicing the profound Buddha-dharma transmitted by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. His realization advanced by leaps and bounds and he attained perfect good fortune and wisdom. In 2004, he demonstrated the Vajra power of a champion of majestic strength and lifted before a crowd of people the Buddha-bathing lotus tub weighing more than 4,000 pounds to fetch water at a holy Buddha-bathing dharma assembly (CLICK for article. The Dharma King was known as layman Ciren Jiacuo Gyatso then) for article. In 2009, he performed a dharma publicly to cause his spiritual consciousness to exit his body to take a Vajra pill placed at a distance away into his hand. Eventually he enlightened his mind and saw his original nature to realize his dharma body. His undertaking was recorded into the Dharma Discourses in Silver Box that have been widely distributed in the world.
In September 2018, Dharma King Gar Tongstan beseeched His beneficent Buddha Master, H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III, to perform a session of grand offering of holy fire mandala. He said, “This highest and greatest dharma will prove whether those figures who put up the signs of lineages of schools and sects in society are mundane or holy and whether they are novices of Buddhism who have lost the lineages of true Buddha-dharma or not. Those who carry evil views are making big efforts on the internet and in social-media communities to undermine and slander the cultivation and Buddha-dharma from my beneficent Master H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. Only by doing this, can we remove the evils and manifest true Buddha-dharma!”
H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III said, “You are wrong. One should not cause others to feel bad for one’s own sake. I am not able to perform this dharma. Even if I am to perform it, I can only chant according to the ritual.”
Dharma King Gar Tongstan beseeched again, “Even if the dharma is not to be performed for proving my beneficent Buddha Master, the dharma still needs to be performed for stopping disasters and praying for good fortune for living beings in the entire western world and also for me, Disciple Gar Tongstan Ciren Gyatso, to beseech true Buddha-dharma and perfect resources of cultivation!”
H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III then said, “Since this is for the karmic conditions about the great event of true Buddha-dharma in the entire Western world to pray for good fortune to benefit sentient beings, you can take it easy. This dharma assembly has to be performed. Even if I do not do that, there will be a tremendously great holy virtuous one to perform the dharma.”
On September 17, a specialist of metallic manufacturing led a team of people to have a brass mandala stove made in time. On September 18, Sister Xuan Hui was brought the sandalwood pieces and charcoals to be used for burning homas during the fire offering. On September 19, the “Grand Dharma Assembly of Holy Fire Offering” was formally held with the grand opening of the mandala at the Holy Miracles Temple in the United States of America.
The “Dharma of Holy Fire Offering” is regarded as the king of dharmas for halting disasters and increasing good fortune. Such dharma was performed successfully only by Master Phapongka and Kangsa Rinpoche in Tibet about 80 years ago. Since then, the so-called fire-offering dharmas in both Tibet and regions of Han Chinese are only described as holy dharma practices in books and verbal words without the actual manifestation of any holy state. All is based on chanting the ritual and explicit practices of worldly ways.
On the contrary, during the Grand Dharma Assembly of Holy Fire Offering presided by a tremendously great holy virtuous one at the Holy Miracles Temple in America, Vajra Female Mahasattva arrived in person in the empty sky, emitting light throughout Her tall and huge blue-colored body. In an article published on the internet, someone said that with the pointing of a finger, Vajra Female Mahasattva ejected a ray of flashing light and flame began to burn inside the mandala stove.
They saw that Vajra Female Mahasattva manifested in the empty sky and She was very tall and extremely solemn and majestic. She acted with changing bodily movements and postures. There was a net of electric fire circling around Her body. As soon as the fire-igniting guard of the dharma assembly finished the beseeching prayer, a flash was emitted from between the eyebrows of Vajra Female Mahasattva into the mandala stove. A big blazing fire started to burn instantly! At that time, there were only five pieces of sandalwood chips inside the mandala stove. What caused such a big blazing fire immediately?
Next, the demons captured inside the Vajra demon-subduing bowl tried as much as they could to push up the bowl to escape. At the moment when the bowl was shaken, a light of fire was again emitted from between the eyebrows of Vajra Female Mahasattva toward the demon-subduing bowl. With a sound of “hong,” golden flame came from the demon-subduing bowl, turning the demons and the dark karmas of cultivators into crushed powders. Vajra Female Mahasattva then brought the souls of the demons to the Buddha-land to teach and transform them! The nearly 100 cultivators attending the dharma assembly were greatly astonished and all bowed continuously on their kneels to pay respect!
At the dharma assembly, the tremendously great holy virtuous one announced to cultivators that since this dharma assembly had been performed, Dharma King Gar Tongstan would very soon pass away in a perfectly liberated state.
This dharma assembly was exactly the last dharma assembly that Dharma King Gar Tongstan was waiting for. Next day, after taking a bath and changing His garment, He entered His dharma practice. Then, a writing desk with pen, ink, paper, and white-out fluid placed on it was put in front of His dharma seat. He wrote a letter of respectful farewell to H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III and then immediately sat down to pass away in a perfectly liberated state. When monastics from different temples arrived, they found that right after putting down the pen, the dharma king passed away in a perfectly liberated state with complete ease and without any hesitation. At that time, it suddenly dawned on everyone that the verse of respectful farewell that Dharma King Gar Tongstan wrote was to point out where the true dharma of the Tathagata is for living beings, which is upheld and controlled by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III and is the same as the Buddha-dharma of Sakyamuni Buddha that only belongs to Buddhism without any sectarian affiliation!
The following is the verse of respectful farewell written by Dharma King Gar Tongstan.
Dharma King Gar Tongstan’s Last Letter to Dorje Chang Buddha III
” Verse of Respectful Farewell“
”To my beneficent Master Namo Dorje Chang Buddha III,“
“I, Disciple Gar Tongstan Ciren Gyatso, decided to pass away in a perfectly liberated state.”
“Human life accumulates sufferings through the years and months. I went to various places to seek enlightenment through learning from Buddha. I followed and stayed with many masters to learn from them, including Guang Qin, Xuan Hua, Ka Lu, and Dharma King Dilgo Khyentse. I practiced diligently and worked hard on the unshared dharma of Path-Fruit of the Sakya Sect without effect. I gratefully thank my Buddha Master for the Mahamudra of Liberation that is supreme and unsurpassed. The holy dharma that I received from secretly transmitted initiation enabled me to achieve freedom from birth and death, with true realization attained on the spot. I now pen down my words and will then leave the world, passing away in a state of perfect accomplishment before the ink dries.”
Verses of Respectful Farewell
Namo beneficent Master, H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III
Disciple Gar Tongstan Ciren Gyatso has decided to leave this world.
As life is filled with suffering,
I rushed about learning Buddhism and seeking enlightenment.
I have followed many masters:
Guang Qin, Xuan Hua, Kalu,
And Dharma King Dilgo Khyentse,
Diligently practicing their dharmas and the Sakya unshared LamDre Dharma,
All to no avail.
Thankfully, I met my Buddha Master.
Through the Mahamudra of Liberation that is supreme and unsurpassed,
And the secret initiations and transmissions of holy dharma from my Buddha Master,
I achieved control over my own birth and death.
My direct realization is reality.
I now put down my brush and leave this world,
Entering into the state of liberation before the ink dries.
Namo my beneficent Master, H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III!
Disciple Tongstan respectfully bids farewell.
September 20, 2018
“Namo my beneficent Master Dorje Chang Buddha III!”*
Once upon a time, there was a very rich man living in Benares, in northern India. When his father died, he inherited even more wealth. He thought, “Why should I use this treasure for myself alone? Let my fellow beings also benefit from these riches.”
So he built dining halls at the four gates of the city — North, East, South and West. In these halls he gave food freely to all who wished it. He became famous for his generosity. It also became known that he and his followers were practicers of the Five Training Steps.
In those days, there was a Silent Buddha meditating in the forest near Benares. He was called Buddha because he was enlightened. This means that he no longer experienced himself, the one called ‘I’ or ‘me’, as being in any way different from all life living itself. So he was able to experience life as it really is, in every present moment.
Being one with all life, he was filled with compassion and sympathy for the unhappiness of all beings. So he wished to teach and help them to be enlightened just as he was. But the time of our story was a most unfortunate time, a very sad time. It was a time when no one else was able to understand the Truth, and experience life as it really is. And since this Buddha knew this, that was why he was Silent.
While meditating in the forest, the Silent Buddha entered into a very high mental state. His concentration was so great that he remained in one position for seven days and nights, without eating or drinking.
When he returned to the ordinary state, he was in danger of dying from starvation. At the usual time of day, he went to collect alms food at the mansion of the rich man of Benares.
When the rich man had just sat down to have lunch, he saw the Silent Buddha coming with his alms bowl. He rose from his seat respectfully. He told his servant to go and give alms to him.
Meanwhile, Mara, the god of death, had been watching. Mara is the one who is filled with greed for power over all beings. He can only have this power because of the fear of death.
Since a Buddha lives life fully in each moment, he has no desire for future life, and no fear of future death. Therefore, since Mara could have no power over the Silent Buddha, he wished to destroy him. When he saw that he was near death from starvation, he knew that he had a good chance of succeeding.
Before the servant could place the food in the Silent Buddha’s alms bowl, Mara caused a deep pit of red hot burning coals to appear between them. It seemed like the entrance to a hell world.
When he saw this, the servant was frightened to death. He ran back to his master. The rich man asked him why he returned without giving the alms food. He replied, “My lord, there is a deep pit full of red hot burning coals just in front of the Silent Buddha.”
The rich man thought, “This man must be seeing things!” So he sent another servant with alms food. He also was frightened by the same pit of fiery coals. Several servants were sent, but all returned frightened to death.
Then the master thought, “There is no doubt that Mara, the god of death, must be trying to prevent my wholesome deed of giving alms food to the Silent Buddha. Because wholesome deeds are the beginning of the path to enlightenment, this Mara wishes to stop me at all costs. But he does not understand my confidence in the Silent Buddha and my determination to give.”
So he himself took the alms food to the Silent Buddha. He too saw the flames rising from the fiery pit. Then he looked up and saw the terrible god of death, floating above in the sky. He asked, “Who are you.?” Mara replied, I am the god of death!”
“Did you create this pit of fire?” asked the man. “I did,” said the god. “Why did you do so?” “To keep you from giving alms food, and in this way to cause the Silent Buddha to die! Also to prevent your wholesome deed from helping you on the path to enlightenment, so you will remain in my power!”
The rich man of Benares said, “Oh Mara, god of death, the evil one, you cannot kill the Silent Buddha, and you cannot prevent my wholesome giving! Let us see whose determination is stronger!”
Then he looked across the raging pit of fire, and said to the calm and gentle Enlightened One, “Oh Silent Buddha, let the light of Truth continue to shine as an example to us. Accept this gift of life!”
So saying, he forgot himself entirely, and in that moment there was no fear of death. As he stepped into the burning pit, he felt himself being lifted up by a beautiful cool lotus blossom. The pollen from this miraculous flower spread into the air, and covered him with the glowing colour of gold. While standing in the heart of the lotus, the Great Being poured the alms food into the bowl of the Silent Buddha. Mara, god of death, was defeated!
In appreciation for this wonderful gift, the Silent Buddha raised his hand in blessing. The rich man bowed in homage, joining his hands above his head. Then the Silent Buddha departed from Benares, and went to the Himalayan forests.
Still standing on the wonderful lotus, glowing with the color of gold, the generous master taught his followers. He told them that practising the Five Training Steps is necessary to purify the mind. He told them that with such a pure mind, there is great merit in giving alms — indeed it is truly the gift of life!
When he had finished teaching, the fiery pit and the lovely cool lotus completely disappeared.
The moral is: Have no fear when doing wholesome deeds.
Buddhist Tales for Young and Old, volume 1, Prince Goodspeaker, Stories 1-50
Once upon a time, an important adviser to a certain king was on his way to a meeting with the king and other advisers. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw a dead mouse by the roadside. He said to those who were with him. “Even from such small beginnings as this dead mouse, an energetic young fellow could build a fortune. If he worked hard and used his intelligence, he could start a business and support a wife and family.”
A passerby heard the remark. He knew this was a famous adviser to the king, so he decided to follow his words. He picked up the dead mouse by the tail and went off with it. As luck would have it, before he had gone even a block, a shopkeeper stopped him. He said, “My cat has been pestering me all morning. I’ll give you two copper coins for that mouse.” So it was done.
With the two copper coins, he bought sweet cakes, and waited by the side of the road with them and some water. As he expected, some people who picked flowers for making garlands were returning from work. Since they were all hungry and thirsty, they agreed to buy sweet cakes and water for the price of a bunch of flowers from each of them. In the evening, the man sold the flowers in the city. With some of the money he bought more sweet cakes and returned the next day to sell to the flower pickers.
This went on for a while, until one day there was a terrible storm, with heavy rains and high winds. While walking by the king’s pleasure garden, he saw that many branches had been blown off the trees and were lying all around. So he offered to the king’s gardener that he would clear it all away for him, if he could keep the branches. The lazy gardener quickly agreed.
The man found some children playing in a park across the street. They were glad to collect all the branches and brush at the entrance to the pleasure garden, for the price of just one sweet cake for each child.
Along came the king’s potter, who was always on the lookout for firewood for his glazing oven. When he saw the piles of wood the children had just collected, he paid the man a handsome price for it. He even threw into the bargain some of his pots.
With his profits from selling the flowers and the firewood, the man opened up a refreshment shop. One day all the local grass mowers, who were on their way into town, stopped in his shop. He gave them free sweet cakes and drinks. They were surprised at his generosity and asked, “What can we do for you?” He said there was nothing for them to do now, but he would let them know in the future.
A week later, he heard that a horse dealer was coming to the city with 500 horses to sell. So he got in touch with the grass mowers and told each of them to give him a bundle of grass. He told them not to sell any grass to the horse dealer until he had sold his. In this way he got a very good price.
Time passed until one day, in his refreshment shop, some customers told him that a new ship from a foreign country had just anchored in the port. He saw this to be the opportunity he had been waiting for. He thought and thought until he came up with a good business plan.
First, he went to a jeweler friend of his and paid a low price for a very valuable gold ring, with a beautiful red ruby in it. He knew that the foreign ship was from a country that had no rubies of its own, where gold too was expensive. So he gave the wonderful ring to the captain of the ship as an advance on his commission. To earn this commission, the captain agreed to send all his passengers to him as a broker. He would then lead them to the best shops in the city. In turn, the man got the merchants to pay him a commission for sending customers to them.
Acting as a middle man in this way, after several ships came into port, the man became very rich. Being pleased with his success, he also remembered that it had all started with the words of the king’s wise adviser. So he decided to give him a gift of 100,000 gold coins. This was half his entire wealth. After making the proper arrangements, he met with the king’s adviser and gave him the gift, along with his humble thanks.
The adviser was amazed, and he asked, “How did you earn so much wealth to afford such a generous gift?” The man told him it had all started with the adviser’s own words not so long ago. They had led him to a dead mouse, a hungry cat, sweet cakes, bunches of flowers, storm damaged tree branches, children in the park, the king’s potter, a refreshment shop, grass for 500 horses, a golden ruby ring, good business contacts, and finally a large fortune.
Hearing all this, the royal adviser thought to himself, “It would not be good to lose the talents of such an energetic man. I too have much wealth, as well as my beloved only daughter. As this man is single, he deserves to marry her. Then he can inherit my wealth in addition to his own, and my daughter will be well cared for.”
This all came to pass, and after the wise adviser died, the one who had followed his advice became the richest man in the city. The king appointed him to the adviser’s position. Throughout his remaining life, he generously gave his money for the happiness and well being of many people.
The moral is: With energy and ability, great wealth comes even from small beginnings.
My son once shared a story about greed from his middle school textbook, by Leo Tolstoy. It was quite frightening, to realize the power that greed exerts over us all. Sometimes, it can even blind us to the threat of death itself.
The protagonist of the story is a peasant named Pahom, who overhears his wife and sister-in-law argue over the merits of town and peasant farm life. He thinks to himself “if I had plenty of land, I shouldn’t fear the Devil himself!”. Unbeknown to him, Satan is listening.
However, Pahom then becomes very possessive of his land, and this causes arguments with his neighbors. “Threats to burn his building began to be uttered.” Later, he moves to a larger area of land at another Commune. Here, he can grow even more crops and amass a small fortune, but he has to grow the crops on rented land, which irritates him. Finally, after buying and selling a lot of fertile and good land, he is introduced to the Bashkirs, and is told that they are simple-minded people who own a huge amount of land. Pahom goes to them to buy as much of their land for as low a price as he can negotiate. Their offer is very unusual: for a sum of one thousand rubles, Pahom can walk around as large an area as he wants, starting at daybreak, marking his route with a spade along the way. If he returns to his starting point by sunset that day, all the land his route encloses will be his, but if he does not reach his starting point, he will lose his money and receive no land. He is delighted, as he believes that he can cover a great distance and has chanced upon the bargain of a lifetime. That night, Pahom experiences a surreal dream in which he sees himself lying dead by the feet of the Devil, who is laughing.
He stays out as late as possible, marking out land until just before the sun sets. Toward the end, he realizes he is far from the starting point and runs back as fast as he can to the waiting Bashkirs. He finally arrives at the starting point just as the sun sets. The Bashkirs cheer his good fortune, but exhausted from the run, Pahom drops dead. His servant buries him in an ordinary grave only six feet long, thus answering the question posed in the title of the story.
After reading the story, I have come to truly understand why greed is the first of the three poisons in Buddhist teachings. Out of all these vices (greed, hatred, and delusion), it is perhaps the most seductive.
The contemporary Buddha H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III teaches Buddhist disciples that greed can break one’s cultivation. True to his word, H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III never takes any offerings from his students, no matter how big or small they are. His Holiness has set a great example for all his disciples. The videos below are the testimonies.
Recently I have gotten a special pill from a Dharma Assembly at Hua Zang Si Temple in San Francisco. The pill was made through Buddha-dharma, and is capable of curing illnesses. And I was even more fortunate that I had a opportunity to watch a video about how these pills were made. The whole process was so incredible and astonishing.
There are two types of the healing pills. The one is made from conducting a dharma with the Medicine Buddha as the yidam and using the practice of tummo as the cause, it is called the Daba Buqiong Pill. Another kind made from a dharma with the Kuan Si Yin Bodhisattva, one of the five great Buddha Mothers, as the yidam is named the Kazhuo Ande Pill (also called the Black Jewel Medicine Pill). These pills are made by two types of methods, the highest or most magnificent way or worldly ways. In today’s Buddhism world, worldly ways are commonly used. The process is basically mixing all and only the required ingredients of medicine that are blessed by chanting the mantra of the dharma and then rubbing the mixture into pills. The magnificent inner tantric way of making these pills is completely different. The practice of tummo concentration must be used as the affinity of the dharma. The ingredients of the medicine are exactly the same. The blessing power of the pills is supreme and most magnificent. However, because of the loss of Buddha -dharma, the process of making these pills with the most magnificent (non-worldly) methods has almost become extinct.
The pills of Daba Buqiong and Kazhuo Ande made from the magnificent method are rare and hard to obtain. The first difficulty is that it is hard to find a true great virtuous one to conduct tummo concentration.
Many people have heard about the dharma of tummo concentration but it is extremely difficult to see a true manifestation of tummo power. Today, in Tibet, India and other places, there are still many lamas who practice tummo concentration. However, when they walk out of the closed room at the end of the extended practice in seclusion, very few of them can actually raise their body temperature. The most they were able to do is symbolically wear a wet blanket while walking around the temple. Those who attained such initial level are now called holy and venerable ones. This is just an indication that tantric dharmas are being lost from generation to generation.
Tummo concentration is a high-class Buddha-dharma of meditation. It is a rare holy dharma indispensable for cultivating the life power of the body, mind-wind and bright spot, and the accomplishment of a rainbow-light body. Regardless of what illness or disease one has, practicing tummo can eliminate it completely. Therefore, this dharma is the dead enemy of the demon of illness. Tummo concentration is a great dharma in the division of supreme yoga. The perfect accomplishment in the practice of this dharma combined with Vajra Body Substitution Meditation can lead to the accomplishment of becoming a Bodhisattva at the twelfth stage or higher.
There are two types of practices of tummo concentration. One is Yoga Tummo from Tibetan Esoteric Buddhism. The other is the Corpse-Laying Tummo regarded as “the King of Tummo.” When practicing tummo, the higher the body temperature can be raised to, the higher the realization power of the practitioner. The normal body temperature of humans is between 98.6°F and 99.5°F (37°C and 37.5°C). When the body temperature reaches a level between 104°F and 105.8°F (40°C and 41°C), one is regarded as having a high fever. A temperature above 41°C (about 106°F) can cause danger to one’s life. However, practitioners of tummo concentration can attain much higher temperatures than that.
The realization power from tummo concentration is defined by four steps. The first step is called the Initial Warmth Step. At this step, body temperature can be raised to between 115°F and 130°F but the ability of curing illnesses is not strong yet. The second step is the Joy of Heat from Meditation Step, with the body temperature raised to between 130°F and 150°F. The heat of tummo can be released at certain locations of the body to provide a relatively strong ability of curing illnesses. However, there are five illnesses that cannot be cured by this ability. Anyway, one will rarely become ill with the accomplishment at this step. The third step is the Step of Emptiness and Existence at High Temperature. The body temperature can be raised to between 150°F and 200°F. The heat of tummo can be distributed to any part of the body to heal illness by oneself, with the exception of two illnesses. The practitioner can collect the dark karma generated daily due to ignorance and burn it away with tummo. One can also move the heat of tummo outside of his body to cure illness and eliminate hindrance for other people or to subdue demons and evil spirits. The fourth step is the magnificent Delight at Extreme Temperature. The temperature will exceed 200°F and the heat of tummo will spread to the entire body. Master Milerapa used his realization power of this step to ignite his own body to attain the accomplishment of sambhogakaya, and nirmanakaya.
Although the true realization power of tummo is hard to find through the history of over one thousand years, fortunately Mozhi Rinpoches, a disciple of H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III, is a great yoga master. He is the first-place master of tummo concentration in Tibetan Esoteric Buddhism. His body weight was reduced from 241.4 pounds (109.5 kg) to 124.6 pounds (56.5 kg) by practicing tummo concentration. He once practiced tummo concentration for seven months and three days, without eating and drinking. After that, all illnesses were eliminated.
The video I watched was the recording of The dharma assembly of making the pills of Kazhuo Ande. It was held at Los Angeles at year 2009. In the dharma assembly, Mozhi JiaoZun was the chief master to produce the heat of tummo. Other rinpoches would be his dharma-protecting assistants. He stated that the purpose of his coming here was not to compare his realization power with others and was not for making Kazhuo Ande pills. It was a coincidence that he met this cause. He regards it as his duty to do something for living beings.
At the dharma assembly, Mozhi Rinpoche lay on the dharma board and had his head covered up so people would not know who was practicing tummo concentration. This great holy virtuous one with true realization of power and abilities never wanted to boast or praise himself. Everyone attending the dharma assembly was greatly moved and felt ashamed by such holy and pure style of humble self-cultivation.
When the great holy virtuous one was conducting the dharma, a porcelain pot for frying the medicine was laid on his belly. The high-temperature heat of tummo was strong and vicious and directly penetrated the thick porcelain pot. Rinpoches who used a finger to test the temperature were all scalded badly. They had to throw the medicine powder into the pot and get away quickly to protect their fingers from getting injured.
At the dharma assembly of making pills with the magnificent method, the heat from the Body-Laying (Corpse Pose) Tummo Concentration scalded rinpoches’ fingers so that they were red and swollen. Some had frowning eyebrows and were sweating all over their heads. Some had blisters form on their fingers. Some had the color of the swollen finger turned into white or black colors. Some had their whole finger scalded red and unable to bend. Some even had their face scorched red by the high heat of tummo.
I could not help from making a heart-felt praise: the true power of Corpse-Laying Tummo Concentration from The Supreme and Unsurpassable Mahamudra of Liberationis truly amazing!
“Liu Chi Alley” (六尺巷 in chinese) is located between Xihou Street and Wumu Garden in Tongcheng District， Tongcheng city, Anhui Province. The allusion of “Six-foot Alley” has become a historical story stems from the land dispute between Zhang’s family and his neighbors.
In the Qing Dynasty, there was a famous family in Tongcheng, Anhui Province. Father and son were the prime ministers of the two generations and had great power. Their names were Zhang Ying and Zhang Tingyu. During the reign of Emperor Kangxi in the Qing Dynasty, Zhang Ying was a Bachelor of Arts at Wenhua Palace and a minister of rites. At that time, the Zhang family’s old house in Tongcheng was adjacent the house of the Wu family. There was only about 3 feet of space between the land owned by each family.
The Wu family wanted to expand their property to occupy this space. The Zhang family vehemently disagreed. The two sides brought the case to the county courthouse of Yamen. County officials knew that both families involved in the dispute were well-known families with prominent officials. They dared not easily break the dispute. During this period, the Zhang family wrote a letter to Zhang Ying, now a senior official in Beijing, asking Zhang Ying to come out and interfere in this matter. After receiving the letter, Zhang Ying thought that he should humble the neighbors, and wrote a poem to his home in reply:
Thousands of miles of a mail is only for a wall.
Why not give up him three feet?
The Great Wall still stands today.
But where is the Empire Qishihuang now?
The Zhang family read it and eventually realized they understood its meaning. They took the initiative to give up three feet of space for the Wu family’s property. The Wu family, deeply touched by this gesture, decided to concede three feet of their own adjacent land, thus forming a six-foot lane between the properties. The two courtesy concessions and the Zhang family’s non-oppressive approach were passed on to be good folk stories.
From this story, we learn to be modest and tolerant in life. Mutual humility can avoid many contradictions and reduce disputes between people. Mutual understanding and tolerance can help people get along harmoniously, and can greatly improve people’s happiness index. As the saying goes, “A bit of forbearance will calm the wind and silence the wave. Take a step back and have the vastness of sea and sky.”
The virtues of tolerance and equality have been passed down since ancient times. In the process of building a harmonious society for people who are open-minded and respectful, this tradition of humility needs to be carried forward even more. The allusions to a “Six-Foot Lane” have gone far beyond its original meaning and has become a testimony to the virtues of harmony and humility of the Chinese nation.
Every day you are faced with a million little traps that encourage you to take your life way too seriously. Next time you are tempted to smash your computer or lash out in a fit of road rage, remember these reasons not to take life so seriously.
1. Relationships are all that matter
Time and time again when researchers have tried to figure out what makes people happy they have come to the same conclusion: personal relationships make the biggest difference. If we valued our happiness over money we would do everything we could to spend time with friends and family and not worry so much about putting in extra time at work. When you look back on your life, you won’t reflect on the time you spent at work; you will remember family dinners, great vacations, romantic dinners, and your wedding.
2. Rich people aren’t happier people Spending more time at home or with friends will probably have a negative impact on the balance of your bank account. Just reading that sentence probably sent a wave of panic through some of you, but consider the fact that wealth is not correlated with happiness. In fact, once you have enough money to satisfy your basic needs, money makes very little difference in your overall well-being. The only exceptions are if you give your extra money to charity.
3. Worrying isn’t productive Some of us even end up stressed out in situations where it is totally unwarranted. For example, you might find yourself visiting a new city like London or Paris and end up thoroughly confused by the transit system. You can’t find out how to get where you want to go and it makes you want to scream. But what are you accomplishing by stressing yourself out? Nothing.
4. Your time is limited You only get to live one life. If you’re lucky enough to make it to age 90 you still have less than 800,000 hours between the time you are born and the time you die to cherish and enjoy all the things that make up life. One third of that time you won’t even be awake for, so you had best make the most of the remaining chunk. Do what you need to do to live a happy and fulfilled life.
There is a rather famous tombstone in Westminster Abbey. There’s nothing so special about it, except for its inscription. I believe that many people have heard of it.
“When I was young and free and my imagination had no limits, I dreamed of changing the world. As I grew older and wiser, I discovered the world would not change, so I shortened my sights somewhat and decided to change only my country. But it, too, seemed immovable. As I grew into my twilight years, in one last desperate attempt, I settled for changing only my family, those closest to me, but alas, they would have none of it. And now, as I lie on my deathbed, I suddenly realize: If I had only changed myself first, then by example I would have changed my family. From their inspiration and encouragement, I would then have been able to better my country, and who knows, I may have even changed the world.”
It is said that many world dignitaries and celebrities were deeply moved when they saw these words Some people say that this is a teaching of life, some people say that it is a kind of introspection of the soul.
There are similar teachings and philosophies in Chinese traditional culture. The Great Learning is a compilation of Confucian teachings used to address deeply important social behavior. In The Great Learning says: “The ancients who wished to illustrate illustrious virtue throughout the kingdom, first ordered well their own States. Wishing to order well their States, they first regulated their families. Wishing to regulate their families, they first cultivated their persons.”
“From the Kings down to the mass of ordinary people, all must consider the cultivation of the person the root of everything besides. It cannot be, when the root is neglected, that what should spring from it will be well ordered.”
In Buddhism, self cultivation is heavily emphasized as well. The first thing for all buddhist disciples is constantly cultivating themselves. In What is Cultivation, His HolinessDorje Chang Buddha III provides detailed guidance on self-cultivation. Self-cultivation is the fundamental and essential in the learning of Buddhism. Through self-cultivation, one will not only live a happy life and contribute the best of oneself to the society, but also can reach enlightenment and liberation.