''With or Without the Lineage?''
from Living Buddha Lian-sheng Sheng-yen Lu Book 256 Paying a Visit to an Eminent Master
Recently, several groups of people came to the mountain daily and asked me if they had lost the lineage.
Among the abundant questioners were monks, nuns, and laypersons. Some were in groups of two or three. Others were in groups of more than ten. One time, there were more than thirty in a group. They all came to ask the one same question, ''Have we lost the lineage?''
The reason they asked such a question was because they all followed this master, wore talismans drawn by this master, were blessed by this master, and carried an object worshipped by a specific group.
I said nothing after listening to them.
They asked, ''We need Master Lu's lineage!''
Some even requested directly, ''Master Lu please give us your handwritten confirmation proving that we have the lineage.''
At first, I was going to write it for them. However, later, after giving it some thought, I felt that it was not proper…
Why not proper?
It is because the disciples should be able to tell themselves whether or not they have the lineage. They should not be asking me about it.
One who respects one's own guru whom one took refuge from has the lineage.
One who does not respect one's own guru whom one took refuge from does not have the lineage.
One who follows me has the lineage.
One who leaves me must lose the lineage.
One who studies Buddhism must follow the precepts. One keeps the lineage by obeying these precepts and not breaking samaya.
If one does not uphold the precepts and breaks samaya one loses the lineage certainly like a kite with a broken line.
One who takes refuge under some other master after having taken refuge from Master Lu as one's root guru, or takes refuge under someone who is also a disciple of the same root guru, must lose the lineage.
If one wholeheartedly takes refuge under a guru, one will not lose the lineage.
If one thinks of one's root guru three times daily, in the morning, at noon time, and in the evening, one will not lose the lineage.
If one does not think of one's root guru at all, one must lose the lineage.
If one practices the lineage buddhadharma of the root guru once a day, one has the lineage.
One however will naturally lose the lineage if one does not practice at all.
If one withdraws their spiritual conviction, the lineage regresses.
When one always focus their mind on buddhahood, the lineage will be sustained forever.
One who badmouths the root guru behind their back has long lost the lineage.
Slandering buddha, dharma, or sangha all results in losing the lineage.
(These are the ones who confound truth and falsehood, and are gossipers and liars; they are committing speech karma.)
Arbitrarily bestowing empowerment to sentient beings by claiming to have achieved spiritual union when in reality one has yet to achieve it is called ''lacking genuine empowerment,'' which is certainly without lineage.
Anyone who follows, believes in, and makes offerings to this person loses the lineage.
One who tries to win favor with ghosts has already lost the lineage. One who proclaims to have great supernatural power (in reality a ''ghost-connection'') has already lost the lineage.
!!Please be aware that before engaging in any True Buddha Vajrayana practices, one must first take refuge and receive the respective empowerment.!!