September 5, 2020, Group cultivation of Golden Mother of the Jade pond at Seattle Ling Shen Ching Tze Temple
TBS Seattle Report
Saturday, Sept. 5th, was the birthday of Golden Mother. At 8:00 PM, disciples waited respectfully outside Seattle Ling Shen Ching Tze Temple (LSCTT) to welcome the arrival of Grandmaster and Shimu to commence a group cultivation of Golden Mother of the Jade Pond Principal Deity Practice. During merit dedication of the practice, Grandmaster Lu wished Golden Mother of the Jade Pond Happy Birthday, infinite longevity, and receiving incense offerings forever. Grandmaster prayed to Golden Mother to radiate light to bless all sentient beings, to deliver netherworld beings to the Buddha Pure Land, to eradicate the COVID-19 pandemic as soon as possible, and for TBS disciples to have good health, freedom from illness, all wishes fulfilled, karmic hindrances eradicated, and auspicious outcomes in all endeavors.
Grandmaster mentioned that Golden Mother of the Jade Pond is his root guru, personal deity, and the first deity with which Grandmaster attained spiritual union. She is a Golden Immortal and was found in the Dunhuang Grottoes together with the Emperor of Donghua and Padmakumara.
To reach the Immortal Realm of Jade Pond Golden Mother, one must pass through the Three-thousand Weak Waters where nothing, not even a goose feather, is able to float. That is why these waters are called “weak”, and no one is able to pass through them. Ascending further up Kunlun Mountains, one encounters a strong wind which pierces like knife blades. No one can go up there; going up will cause even one’s flesh and bones to disappear. After passing through this strong wind, one reaches an extremely high realm. At the peak of this realm is what you might call a “garden”. This is the Immortal Realm of Jade Pond Golden Mother. Grandmaster has visited the Immortal Realm of the Jade Pond. Legend has it that King Mu of Zhou had been there and so had many other Immortals. The Longhua Peach Banquet was held here. I know there is a Padmakumara Palace in the Immortal Realm of Golden Mother of the Jade Pond. Why is Padmakumara Palace in the Jade Pond Immortal Realm? Read my Book 281 and you will understand.
Next, Grandmaster compassionately answered questions from disciples.
Q: Wholeheartedly prostrating to Grandmaster, disciple has read Golden Mother of the Jade Pond Authentic Scripture of Universal Deliverance, Retrieval of Perfection, and Liberation through Meditative Stability and Wisdom. This scripture contains a passage which I find difficult to understand. May I respectfully ask the compassionate Guru Buddha to enlighten me as to the meaning of this scripture passage as follows:
“Heaven originated from Wuji. [Giving rise to the] three 'platforms', Taiji, sun and moon. Sun and Moon, yin[Moon] and yang[Sun], revolve. Human beings arise from the embryos of yin and yang. They are either male or female. All trace their origin to Wuji. Just because of a move in the middle, in a split second one falls to dust. Descending into the evil world stained with the five defilements, indulging in liquor, sensual pleasure, anger, and wealth, one transmigrates through cycles of birth and death. Disasters are born from emotions rippling in the ocean of desire. Bloody water flows everywhere which is pitiful. Discarded and neglected corpses are saddening. Reaching this point in her discourse. Her motherly heart endlessly shed compassionate tears.”
In this passage, what does just because of "a move in the middle" refer to? My understanding is that everyone comes from Wuji. If there is originally no existence, what is "a move in the middle"? Thank you Grandmaster for your compassionate enlightening of this meaning.
A: This a move in the middle refers to the arising of ignorance. Originally there was nothing, then a thought arises. This thought is an ignorant thought.
Originally there was nothing, but due to one thought, one turns into dust. Buddhism, likewise, has the saying: Celestial beings from Abhasvara Heaven saw that the Earth was brilliant and wanted to go there to have fun. In an instant, they flew there. They ate earthly food which prevented them from flying back to heaven. This is Buddhism’s theory of human origin. This saying is equivalent to a move in the middle, turning to dust in an instant.
Q: Greetings to compassionate Grandmaster. I have two questions which I hope Grandmaster can clarify: After taking refuge in Grandmaster, can one cultivate a practice for which one received empowerment from Grandmaster prior to taking refuge in Grandmaster? Or should one receive the same empowerment over again?
A: If one has already received an empowerment, one may cultivate the practice. However, this is a strange question. Supposedly, one should receive refuge empowerment prior to receiving empowerment for other practices. How can it happen that one first receives empowerment for many practices, then subsequently takes refuge? What kind of empowerment is that? Nevertheless, if one has already received empowerment, one does not need to receive the empowerment over again, and may cultivate the practice.
Q: Over many years, I have chanted the following mantras, Great Compassion Mantra, Mahapratisara Dharani Mantra, Great Precious Vast Pavilion Good Living Secret Dharani Mantra, Kalachakra Mantra, Wish-Fulfilling Wheel Mantra, Akshobhya Buddha Heart Mantra, Maha Cundi Bodhisattva Mantra, Shakyamuni Buddha Heart Mantra, Chandraprabha Bodhisattva Mantra, Mahakala Mantra, Akasagarbha Bodhisattva Mantra, Vasudhara Dharani Mantra, and Nine-character Mantra, without having received empowerment from Grandmaster. May I request remote empowerment for these mantras from Grandmaster? Or should I, when cultivating Green Tara Practice, pray to Green Tara for empowerment? Or should I no longer recite them?
A: Regarding mantras for which you never received empowerment, you may request remote empowerment from Grandmaster. Requests for remote empowerment should be limited to not more than three at a time. After you have received remote empowerment, you may recite the mantras.
Q: Honorable Grandmaster, may I ask if it is effective to recite the Repaying Parents' Kindness Mantra regularly, not just in July of the lunar calendar? Usually, I dedicate the merit of recitation to my parents, adoptive parents, grandparents, and parents from my past seven lives. As for those who are still living, will this increase their merit and lifespan? As for relatives who are already deceased, will they be delivered to heaven or the pure land? Is it true that the more one recites this mantra the better?
A: Reciting the Repaying Parents' Kindness Mantra during July of the lunar calendar is, of course, more effective for delivering parents of the past seven lives and also relatives. However, reciting this mantra regularly is also effective. Living relatives will have increased merit and lifespan, and deceased relatives will be delivered to the pure land. The more you recite the better!
Q: If I hang a picture of buddha on the wall that has not been consecrated, can I still light incense and chant mantras in front of it?
A: A sincere heart yields results! Can one hang a picture of buddha on the wall that has not been consecrated and burn incense and chant mantras in front of it? Absolutely!
Grandmaster continued with a discourse on Lamdre.
Earth qi is at the navel chakra, water qi is at the heart chakra, fire qi is at the throat chakra, wind qi belongs to the brow chakra; all require 225 breaths. One inhalation and one exhalation is counted as one breath, every qi requires 225 breaths.
To cultivate qi, one also has to measure its length. Inhalation and exhalation should be about the same length.
Sometimes after we let the qi enter, we do not let it out. This is called “holding”, or “holding qi”. Only we humans can do it. If we breathe in and exhale out, and in and out again without holding qi, even animals can do this. There are four principles for holding qi, which I will explain tomorrow.
After the discourse, Grandmaster, as usual, compassionately blessed all present and online disciples. Everyone then sang Happy Birthday to congratulate Golden Mother. Lastly, Grandmaster and Shimu were respectfully invited to cut the cake and enjoy it together with everyone.
Translated by TBTTs
Translator: Angeline Oh
Editors: Henry Wolf and DJ Chang