Sunday, February 9, 2020

Wuhan Novel Coronavirus Outbreak 2019 (2019-nCov)

Today is the eight day of the first lunar month, which is the day the Chinese worships the Year God. According to the Chinese culture, this is the Year of Rat, with those born in the years of Horse and Rat predictably facing ill fate for the rest of the year. Those born in the years of rabbit, hen and goat will also face ill fate for the rest of the year but probably not as severe as the first group mentioned. Acho Rinpoche arranged a special session for these two groups of practitioners including their family members to pay respect to the Year of God for blessing and elimination of ill fate.

Acho Rinpoche also did a special prayer for the 2019-nCov. Dharma Sister Chan shared with the group a weird dream she had recently. She dreamt of a huge group of bats attacking human recently, causing deaths. But she did not take this dream seriously and forgot about it soon after. She was now reminded of the dream because of the news reporting on the origin of 2019-nCov virus traced to bats.
Acho Rinpoche told us that the first infection was traced to a seafood market selling wild animals for food. Those eating raw meats from the wild animals are even more prone to infection. Such is the collective karma of the human beings. He stressed again that a practitioner must observe strictly the Five Precepts (no killing, no stealing, no sexual misconduct, no excessive drinking of alcohol and no lying). Particularly, a practitioner must abstain from killing. We are unlikely to kill a  human but we could easily commit the killing of animals. A practitioner must not kill any live animal for food. Sakyamuni Buddha only allowed his students to eat three types of “clean” meats: an animal is not killed because of me; the killing is not witnessed by me; and the killing is not heard by me. We may eat such meats under the said circumstances, if given no better choice. He encouraged us to eat vegetarian food if possible. Those killing the animals with cruelty will commit even greater negative karma. 
Next, Acho Rinpoche led us in the recitation of a special sutra expounded by Sakyamuni Buddha on the prevention of epidemic and the names of the Buddha. We dedicated the merits to 2019-nCov, praying for the speedy recovery of those falling ill and that the epidemic may end soon.  
Sakyamuni Buddha explained to Ananda when the latter asked him about serious epidemics causing deaths. The Buddha explained to Ananda that the cause of such epidemics came from seven evil ghosts and their poisonous breath causing such deaths. However, if we know the names of these seven evil ghosts and read their names aloud, the Buddha will transform into Guhyapada and subdue the evils. The habit of eating meats by human beings will develop a propensity that could be one of the reasons leading us to fall into the Three Lower Realms in future more easily . We should pray to our Root Guru and the Buddhas for blessing and protection, and follow the method taught by the Buddha for treatment of such illness. 
Later, Acho Rinpoche shared two stories with us. During the time of Sakyamuni Buddha, there was a natural disaster that occurred which affected the food supply. The people were too poor to afford any meals. The monks who went around for alms could not get any food and even the Buddha himself did not have food for three days. Finally, one of his students sold his monk robe for food and offered it to the Buddha. Buddha rejected this offering and told his student that the monk robe is too important to be sold away or discarded. Only the parents could accept such offering of meal because the parents are even more important to the student than the Buddha. The moral of the story tells us that that our parents are even more valuable to us than the Buddha, and that we ought to be filial to them.  
Another story goes like this. In ancient India, one day, blood rain fell from the sky. A prophet told the king that it was a bad omen foretelling a devil being born into this world. The king decreed that any baby born with blood stain on his body and mouth must be arrested and locked in jail. Indeed, the devil grew up eating human beings daily. The king fed him with prisoners. The devil would exhale his breath on a prisoner and kill him, before eating the dead person. In total, the devil ate 72,000 people in his life. 
One day, Buddha asked Bodhisattva Maitreya to salvage the devil and he came before the devil. The devil did the same trick on him by exhaling poisonous breath towards Maitreya twice, in vain. The devil was completely awed by the sublime look of Maitreya and suddenly thought to himself, “I did not expect to meet a person who is so accomplished in his spiritual practice in this world!” As a result of this kind thought that dawned on him, the devil immediately died and was reborn into heaven. He was reborn into heavenly realm for six times repeatedly, over an inconceivably long period of time and endowed with all the sensory pleasures enjoyed by beings in such a realm. 
Finally, his life in the heavenly realm ended and he was reborn into this human world. He became a Pratyeka Buddah in this life endowed with a golden-colored body. One day, while he was meditating beneath a bodhi-tree, his body emitted golden light. An army of 72,000 soldiers saw a huge golden rock lying underneath a tree and wielded their knives on the golden rock, taking a piece of gold home each. This Pratyeka Buddah willingly accepted his fate and paid his debt because the 72,000 soldiers were just the people whom he ate during that lifetime when he was the devil. 
Acho Rinpoche told us that a Bodhisattva fears the cause but an ordinary being fears the effect. Those who attended the group prayer today, anyone who rejoiced at the merit generated by the group prayer would have certainly planted a seed that will bear the fruits of goodness in future. Finally, Acho Rinpoche led us in the recitation of the names of the Buddha and the “Acho Rinpoche’s Long Life Prayer”. We dedicated the merits to the 2019-nCov, praying for the speedy recovery of those fallen ill and the end of the virus outbreak soon.

Reported by Sun-Moon KFS on 1-2-2002 


Annex A:《佛说秘瘟经》
Treatment of Epidemics, as advised by Sakyamuni Buddha

At a time, while Sakyamuni Buddha was surrounded by his entourage at an assembly in Śrāvastī, Ananda knelt before the Buddha and asked, “Buddha, when the world is faced with a wide-spread epidemic that burnt like fire which kills many, how could the people in this world protect themselves from such epidemic?” 
Sakyamuni Buddha said, “Listen carefully. I will explain this to you. Such epidemic is caused by seven evil ghosts, who exhale poisonous breath harming the people. When a person is infected, he will suffer from headache, cold and fever, joints pain, and unspeakable sufferings. If there is any good man or woman who knows the name of the seven evil ghosts, they will be spared of such agony. Recite the following mantra:
Namo Buddhaya. Namo Dharmaya. Namo Sanghaya. Namo Seven Buddhas in the past. Namo Buddhas in the ten directions. Namo Bodhisattvas. Namo all sentient beings who hear my name Guhyapada (金刚密迹). Man-tuo-lo Gui (漫多罗鬼), A-qie-shi Gui (阿伽尸鬼), Ni-qie-shi Gui (尼伽尸鬼), A-qie-ye Gui (阿伽耶鬼), Po-luo-li Gui (波罗利鬼), Po-luo-ni Gui (波罗尼鬼), A-pi-luo Gui (阿毘罗鬼). Om. Wu Lun Ni. Po Cha. Svaha (唵。乌轮尼。泼咤。娑诃。)
Sakaymuni Buddha told Ananda, “Thus, any good man or woman who knows the names of the seven evil ghosts will be shunned by these ghosts. These ghosts will not dare harm such people. People or object contaminated by such poisonous breath will be cleared of the contamination. Those protected by Guhyapada will be safe and  will be free of troubles. 
When Sakyamuni Buddha finished expounding this sutra, the assembly comprising the eight heaven and dragon families and all those present accepted the teachings with great joy. 

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

X-Tour: Inaugural Ceremony of Acho Rinpoche Retreat Center & North India Tour


Audience with the 14th H.H Dalai Lama
Audience with the 41st H.H Sakya Trizin


Inauguration of Acho Rinpoche Retreat Center, graced by the 42nd H.H Sakya Trizin














On 21 September 2019, 46 of us, the Dzogchen practitioners, boarded a Singapore Airline flight to New Delhi in India. It was a pilgrimage tour in the region of Northern India this time, with the primary purpose of attending the inaugural ceremony of the new Acho Rinpoche Retreat Center.
We checked into a hotel immediately upon our arrival in New Delhi. On the following morning, we set off to Dehradon where the retreat center is located and the journey took us 7 hours. On the third day morning, we went to the new Acho Rinpoche Retreat Center situated within a beautiful Tibetan settlement. The center is a two storey building, with the main shrine, a rest room and a kitchen on the ground floor, and five rooms on the upper floor used for retreat.
At 11am, the 42nd H.H Sakya Trizin, Vajra Ratna Rinpoche, arrived at the retreat center. The junior Sakya Trizin appeared very steady and calm, exhibiting the charisma of a great spiritual warrior. Soon after Kunde Rinpoche and I offered a long life prayer to Vajra Ratna Rinpoche, the latter conducted the inaugural ceremony for the retreat center and a few mani wheels erected within the settlement. Vajra Ratna Rinpoche joined us for a vegetarian lunch reception including a Tibetan cultural performance; I chatted with him over lunch and learnt that he travelled quite often to Singapore for some important prayers organised by the Singapore Sakya Center. 
Originally, Kunde Rinpoche invited the 41st H.H Sakya Trizin to preside over the inauguration ceremony. However, the senior Sakya Trizin had some leg problems and went to US for treatments; he still had problem walking after returning to India.  So, the junior Sakya Trizin presided over the inauguration ceremony instead. A day before the inauguration ceremony, we were informed by the India Sakya Monastery that the senior Sakya Trizin still had difficulty walking, that he could not grace the inauguration ceremony. 
On the fourth day morning, we went to the Sakya Monastery in order to pay respect to the senio Sakya Trizin at his abode. I presented my book entitled “Dancing Over the Rainbow” and a piece of khatta to the senior Sakya Trizin. I informed him that I took refuge in him 35 years ago in Singapore. It was just an inconceivable spiritual connection between us. Kunde Rinpoche also presented his new book entitled “A Happy Family” to the senior Sakya Trizin. At the end of our audience, the senior Sakya Trizin gave us a Vajra Kilaya Empowerment. The most surprising thing was that, after the audience, we saw him walking back to his room on his own. He had suffered from leg problems for about half a year by now but he could now walk after having an audience with us. It was just another inconceivable occasion, don’t you think so?
The day after the inauguration ceremony, Kunde Rinpoche and I jointly presided over a Guru Rinpoche Long Life Prayer participated by about 2,000 local Tibetans. Dharma Brother Shao had a vision of me transforming into a wrathful form of Guru Rinpoche, who blessed all the participants with rainbow lights. After the prayer, Kunde Rinpoche showed me a video footage taken on the day before the inauguration ceremony, whereby there was a huge flock of birds circling above Acho Rinpoche Retreat Center for a long time. The local residents said they had never come across such phenomenon in the past. When we went up to the rooftop of the center to admire the scenic view of the Himalayan range from afar, suddenly a huge number of birds of different species and sizes appeared from all directions; they were dancing above the sky for nearly one long hour! It was a truly majestic looking show which actually signified the celebration of millions of dakinis of this wonderful occasion. 
On the fifth day, we went to Tshok Padma (Lotus Lake) in Mandi. We reached the place at 2am and had our late dinner. On the next morning, we circumambulated the sacred lake and did a Guru Rinpoche Prayer. According to legend, a king attempted to burn Guru Rinpoche and Princess Madarava alive in this location but Guru Rinpoche turned the fire into a lake instead, and with him and the princess sitting on a lotus right in the center of the lake unscathed. We circumambulated the lake before visiting a scared cave nearby where Guru Rinpoche did his retreat in the past. The whole hill was engulfed by fog upon our arrival. Both the sacred lake and cave were exuberant with strong spiritual energy. 
Next, we continued our journey to Dharamsala. It was our second visit by now to this scared place. The whole place was engulfed by fog too upon our arrival. On the following morning, we waited right outside the residence of H.H Dalai Lama. There was already a very long queue of people awaiting their audience with His Holiness. The security was very tight, with a full body search required for every visitor. Finally, we met His Holiness and presented him with a book published by us. We felt great spiritual joy meeting His Holiness in person. 
On the following day, Kunde Rinpoche held a press conference in Dharamsala for the release of his new book entitled “A Happy Family”.  The book was written in Tibetan language and translated into English too. The day before, I went with Kunde Rinpoche to the Tibetan Library for a meeting with its Director, Geshe Lhakdor, who was the translator of “A Garland of Flowers”, which was the first book written by Kunde Rinpoche. Geshe Lhakdor shared the essence of Buddhism with the audience with a great sense of humour. There were 70 participants from Singapore, Malaysia and China gracing this event.
After attending the press release, we went back to our hotel for lunch. I suddenly decided to conduct a group prayer right after lunch. The place where we had lunch was converted into a temporary shrine for the group prayer. We did a Guru Rinpoche Prayer, joined by our two Indian guides. Later, we had our dinner at the same place before resting at night. We planned to visit the famous Golden Temple of Sikhism in Amritsar on the next day. I used to bring our grassroot leaders to the Sikh Temples during my works before retirement; this was how I fostered my tie with Sikhism.
After dinner, a few of our members started having diarrhoea. The first group of eight members were being sent to the hospital after 11pm. After midnight, the second group was sent to the hospital. As the hospital nearby was full, the third group  including me and Mayumla was sent to another hospital which was quite rundown and located further from the hotel. A few of us reached the hospital after 2am. My diarrhoea stopped after receiving medical treatments. I returned to the hotel around 4am to catch up with some sleeps. By then, the fourth group of members was sent to another hospital even further away.  Finally, the last few members who were ready to leave for Amritsar in the morning went down with diarrhoea too and had to be sent to the hospital.
Nearly three quarters of our group were being admitted to the hospitals, with a few others managing their situations with their own medications brought from home. Dharma Sister Joanne suggested that we skipped the visit to the Golden Temple in Amritsar and left Dharamsala in two groups, with the first group going to Amritsar a day earlier, joined by the second group on the following day at the airport for our flight to New Delhi, as the latter needed to be hospitalised in Dharamsala for one more night. 
It was a sunny day in Amritsar, a complete change from the heavy downpours and thick fog in Dharamsala. In the morning, we visited a nearby village and saw the pictures of the first and tenth guru of Sikhism hung on the wall of a villager’s home. Dharma Brother Shao said that he only came to know the special connection between Acho Rinpoche and the patriarchs of Sikhism in Amritsar. 
We checked into a hotel in New Delhi. Dharma Sister Zhen was possessed. During our night prayer, many animal spirits came forward to seek help and blessing; they even requested to follow me back to Singapore.... I knew then that there would be an even greater challenge ahead. 
The iron bird rose into the sky once again. On our way back to Singapore from New Delhi, rainbows and sun halo appeared in the sky, the dharmapalas continued to protect the Dzogchen practitioners in space. There were many instances of rainbow lights of different shapes appearing during our trip. There was even an occurrence of  a special aura of Great Perfection appearing above the heads of Kunde Rinpoche and Acho Rinpoche too - it was truly amazing. 
After returning to Singapore, my diarrhoea started again and it continued for half a month. I could only constantly move between my toilet seat, my bed and my shrine during the whole period. I lost 6kg within a month and looked haggard alright. Finally, I managed to deliver the souls of all the spiritual beings following me back home, and then my health finally returned to normal. My homage to Amitabha Buddha. I simply feel grateful. 


Acho Rinpoche

20/12/19



 Our group practice in Dharamsala, followed by a rainbow appearing in the sky.

 Press release for Kunde Rinpoche's new book entitled "A Happy Family"

 Special rainbow light appeared above Acho Rinpoche and Kunde Rinpoche outside the residence of H.H Dalai Lama, after our audience with His Holiness.
 Visiting Tshok Padma and Sacred Caves of Guru Rinpoche

 





Sun halo and rainbow appeared in the sky during our flight back from India to Singapore






Friday, June 14, 2019

Amitabha Buddha Soul Deliverance & Naga Vase Offering Puja Held in Penang, Malaysia on 8-6-2019

On 8-6-2019, Acho Rinpoche, Kunde Rinpoche, Shredup Khenpo and Namkhai Lama jointly presided over an Amitabha Buddha Soul Deliverance & Naga Vase Offering Puja held at the Straits Chinese Association in Penang, Malaysia. The event commenced from 9.30am with the soul deliverance ritual, followed by bathing the Dragon Buddha ceremony with milk infused with medicinal herbs.

It was followed by short discourses given by Kunde Rinpoche and Acho Rinpoche respectively later. Acho Rinpoche shared with the audience that after touching down in Penang and checking into the hotel, he continued to do many rounds of prayers at the hotel in order to help deliver the souls of the deceased beings, as there were simply too many of them being enrolled for the soul deliverance ceremony. He had fallen ill for two weeks prior to this puja but he felt that it was worth it as long as it could help the sentient beings. He thanked those who donated generously to the opening ceremony of Acho Rinpoche Retreat Center in India due in September 2019. The inauguration ceremony will be jointly presided over by both the senior and junior Sakya Rinpoches (H.H Skaya Trizin and his son). Kunde Rinpoche also shared with us the tremedous merits of making offering to a retreat center.


Around noon, after our lunch, multi-colored lights appeared in the sky above our venue. Acho Rinpoche took a few pictures of the phenomenon and noted the appearance of Dragon Buddha above the clouds. Sadhu! Sadhu!


After lunch, we left the venue for the sea - to offer the naga vases. We chartered seven boats and went out to the sea. Kunde Rinpoche did a chanting before Acho Rinpoche offered the biggest naga vase by dropping it into the sea. The rest of the participants followed by dropping the rest of the smaller vases into the sea. As the naga vases contained medicinal herbs that could cure the various sickness of the sea beings, the offering of naga vases could truly benefit the dragon family.


On the following day, 9-6-2019, on our way back from Penang to Singapore, we witnessed a beautiful rainbow appearing in the sky outside our plane, when it was a bright sunny sky out there! This is yet another evidence that we are in the perpetual company of the enlightened ones and the dharmapalas. Sadhu! Sadhu!




Reported by Sun Moon KFS on 9-6-2019. 





Dragon Vases

Dragon Buddha


















Manifestation of Dragon Buddha above the clouds... on 8-6-2019
Offering naga vases to the sea...

Sun halo appeared in the sky of Penang on 9-6-2019



Rainbow appeared in the sky on our way back to Singapore