Monday, June 26, 2017

View One’s Teacher as a Buddha

          Tonight, Xi Le Lama and Woesl Lama of the Karma Kagyud lineage joined us for our group prayer. They are participating in a local  Kagyu Monlam during this period and took this opportunity to pay a visit to Acho Rinpoche too. They recited “The Eight Auspicious Stanzas”, Guru Rinpoche’s and Medicine Buddha’s heart mantras etc., and dedicated their merits to all sentient beings. Xi Le Lama told us that Guru Rinpoche’s heart mantra has the greatest power of blessing, as it could mitigate the natural disasters caused by the elements of earth, water, fire and wind, whereas Medicine Buddha’s heart mantra could cure sicknesses. He also explained that we should always dedicate our merits of cultivation to our relatives and friends, as well as all sentient beings in the Six Realms of Existence. If we fail to dedicate our merits in this way, they could be destroyed by the hatred arose in us at a later stage.
          Later, Acho Rinpoche shared with us his future travelling plans including a trip to Kuala Lumpur of Malaysia in August this year for him to co-host an Amitabha Buddha Smoke Puja with H.E Konde Rinpoche, a trip to Nepal in December to celebrate the enthronement ceremony of Princess Roshana’s son who has recently been recognized by H. H. Dodrupchen as a reincarnated master, a visit to India next year to inaugurate the opening ceremony of Acho Rinpoche Retreat Center, a visit to Jambi of Indonesia where Atisha met his teacher etc. Next, Acho Rinpoche invited Dharma Sister Yue from France to share her recent amazing experience related to her practice, over the Internet.
          Yue said, “I consulted Acho Rinpoche on last Thursday on how I could manage my negative emotions quickly. Soon affter receiving the teachings from him, in less than 20 minutes later, I suddenly saw rainbows appearing above my legs – more than ten rainbows in total, which were very clear and beautiful! But they disappeared within the next 20 seconds. My husband saw it and told me that “Buddha Master is with you and giving you his blessing now!” From that night onwards, I started having dreams of Buddha Master and the numerous deities who appeared to be giving their teachings in an assembly, to a large audience of students. Initially, I saw Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara, Amitabha Buddha, Medicine Buddha and many other Mahabodhisattvas whom I had no idea what their Buddha titles were. They were draped in different attires. I tried looking for Buddha Master and finally found him sitting right in the center of all the deities. As I was sitting in the right most of the front row, I was unable to spot him quickly. When I finally found where he was sitting, I felt really excited and kept chanting his title. I saw a very huge rainbow appearing right behind his back - broad, clear and beautiful! I noticed that the rest of the deities had similar rainbows behind their backs too – vertical rainbow pillars rising high into the sky! I could not quite hear their teachings because I was too excited chanting his title. I had never had an experience like this – repeating the same dream for four consecutive nights. The dream finally ceased after I shared it with the rest through WeChat. I am most grateful to Buddha Master and the deities for their wonderful blessing. My homage to the Sun Moon Lamp Buddha!”
          Acho Rinpoche praised Yue for truly viewing her teacher as a Buddha, which is, in fact, the highest teaching of the Vajrayana. When a student views his teacher as a Buddha, he will receive the blessing of a Buddha. When a student views his teacher as a pile of shit, he will get himself into a pile of shit too. This is true. In fact, the highest teaching transmitted by Guru Rinpoche, a patriarch of Vajrayana, is “Revere the Guru, Cherish the Teachings, Internalize the Practice”. “Revere the Guru” is of the first priority! However, it is easier said than done. It is, in fact, extremely difficult to internalize this teaching. Hence, there is hardly anyone who could accomplish the practice through revering his teacher as a Buddha.
          He also mentioned a lady whom we met at the Vajra Yogini Cave in Dali of Yunan, China in the past. She revered the 17th Karmapa Urgeyn Trinley very much. She finally went to India to be ordained personally by the 17th Karmapa. Later, she dreamt of Acho Rinpoche advising her to go into a retreat, telling her that he would transmit the teaching of Dzogchen to her after she has completed her retreat. This Ani (nun in Tibetan language) could not understand why Acho Rinpoche would be the one transmitting Dzogchen teachings to her when the 17th Karmapa is the one whom she took refuge in and the one who ordained her. It is indeed a very strange and amazing dream!
          Lastly, Acho Rinpoche ended tonight’s prayer with an overall dedication of merits by reciting the various Buddha titles and dedicated the merits to this world which is experiencing endless pains. Yesterday, a serious land slide happened in Mao County of Sichuan Province, with a complete destruction of a village resulting in very high number of casualties. We wished that the enlightened ones would bless and save the victims of this land slide, and reduce the occurrence of natural and man-made disasters plaguing this world. 
Reported by Sun-Moon KFS on 25-6-2017

Monday, June 12, 2017

The Lost Civilization of Xi Xia Dynasty of China


         On 27th May 2017, a group of Dzogchen practitioners took a flight to the capital city of Ning Xia of China, Yin Chuan. Our flight transited briefly in Chendu for more than one hour. When I looked out of the window of the airplane, I saw a huge rainbow circle surrounding the sun which kept us company throughout the flight. We arrived in Yin Chuan past midnight, after 1 am. There were 56 of us, including a few of the Chinese members who joined us locally, participating in the same journey to find a lost civilization.
A sun halo kept us company during the first four days, accompanying us on our journey to find the lost civilization. In the next 14 days, there were unusual phenomena occurring in the sky, showing the signs of dragons and protectors of the Dharma following and protecting us during our tour. On the 3rd day, we visited the imperial tombs of the Xi Xia Dynasty and witnessed the aftermaths of disasters caused by nature and mankind in the past one thousand years. Where is the almighty founder, Emperor Lee, of the Xi Xia Dynasty todayEven the grand imperial tombs were not spared from the fate of impermanence, as they had been reduced to merely heaps of sands today. It is indeed very disheartening to see the ruins.
On the 4th day, we visited the Vajrayogini Cave in Wei Wu of Gansu Province. This is the only Vajrayogini Cave which remains in its original form in China. It was excavated during the Xi Xia Dynasty and was once a sacred place of Buddhism. It was documented in Tibetan history that this place is located in a hill that resembled the image of Maitreya Buddha, with a total distance between its head and feet requiring a half-day walking distance. Its head is facing west and its face is facing east. The Vajrayogini Cave and its popular tale of the human Yoginis being born into this world captivated the interest of many high monks and practitioners. There were many precious historical relics found in the Yogini Cave which originated form the Xi Xia Dynasty, making this hill, its cave and temple a rare gem store to Xi Xia researchers worldwide. Unfortunately, our tour guides and drivers had no idea about this cave at all. Our tour bus was too big for the small lanes and we had to abandon our bus and walk on our feet instead. We walked for more than 7km before reaching the cave, which was inaccessible to the public by now as it has been taken over by archeologists appointed by the Chinese government since 2016, to study the historical relics originated from the Xi Xia Dynasty. We did a Vajra Yogini Prayer at the temple enshrining five statues of Vajra Yogini of different colors behind the cave instead. Interestingly, when we were reciting the mantra of Vajra Yogini, we heard a few birds singing along too; we were later told by the care taker of the temple that there were a few red-beaked crows which made this temple their home, and they were the ones which sang along. The care taker of this temple, Zen, shared with us some interesting stories about this sacred place and even led us in circumambulating this sacred hill. He told us that Vajra Yogini stopped him from leaving this place until he has accomplished his mission. We also circumambulated a stupa enshrining the sacred relics of one of the human Vajra Yoginis – the Precious Yogini. This stupa has its origin related to the 6th Dalai Lama.
            On the 6th day, we visited the Jia Yu Gate of the Great Wall. Shao told me that he had a vision of Guan Gong during his morning prayer. Guan Gong was seeking my help to deliver the soul of some spiritual beings who died being accused for crimes that they did not commit; they were being taken care by Guan Gong all this while. We saw a Guan Gong Temple located near the entrance to this gate. As our local tour guide took a long time to brief us on the history of this gate, Guan Gong kept extending his invitation to me until I finally entered his temple to do the soul deliverance. There were many spiritual auras being captured by the cameras after we left the temple.  
            We arrived at Dun Huang at night and went to see a show entitled “Meeting Dun Huang Again”. There was a member in our group whom I had never met in the past until she joined us for this tour. She started crying at the beginning of the show and hugged me tightly. She continued to cry for the rest of the performance. We did a Sakyamuni Prayer in the hotel after the show, and she told us that she actually felt that she belonged to this place more than a thousand year ago. Indeed, one thousand year is only a moment in time.
            On the 7th day, we visited the Dun Huang Grotto, which is one of the greatest grotto arts in ancient China. We came for the 314th Cave which featured Lotus Bodhisattva. The narrator included one more cave which featured the Lotus Sutra upon our request. It was indeed a very eye-opening experience. At this juncture, a sun halo appeared in the sky in our Lion City (Singapore); both places are indeed blessed by the Buddhas.
            On the 9th day, Lan Zhou became very cooling after being washed by heavy rains in two consecutive days. Today was the 10th day of the 5th Chinese Lunar Month, which was also the 10th day of the 4th Tibetan Lunar Month. We visited the Labrang Monastery on this auspicious day. On our way to this Monastery in Xia He, the numerous spiritual beings had obviously lost their patience and came forward to seek my help for soul deliverance while we made a hygiene break at a rest area.
            We visited the Labrang Monastery in Xie He. When we saw buildings of Tibetan design and smelled the fragrance of butter tea, it made me feel at home. Our local narrator was Qiao Mei Lama. He invited us to his personal room after showing us around the monastery, for a friendly chat. We also did a prayer in front of the five stupas enshrining the sacred relics of the past five generations of Jia Mu Yang Rinpoche and felt the great blessing power.
            At night, we did a Guru Rinpoche prayer in the hotel. There were many lamas who were killed by the cruel General Ma Bu Fang more than a century ago, they came forward to seek blessing and soul deliverance. They died a very terrible death indeed, with their heads, waists and legs severed by the armies. On the following day, we returned to Lan Zhou which has just been hit by heavy down pour and hail storms. Our tour guide, Chang, thanked us for bringing rains which are so rare to Lan Zhou; the total rain fall actually amounted to one full year of rain fall measured in Lan Zhou which is located in a very dry area in the north west of China.
            Words cannot fully describe the exceptional phenomena we saw at Mt Sumeru in Gu Yuan of Ning Xia. Initially, a dragon king appeared in the sky. Half the sky was clear blue sky with white clouds and bright sun light. The other half of the sky was covered by dark clouds, with dragon king dancing in the sky, welcoming a group of Dzongchen practitioners who came from a far-away land. During our visit, nectar fell from the sky non-stopped. When we reached the first grotto, a huge rainbow appeared in the sky, between the clear blue sky and the dark clouds. On our way back to the city, a doubled rainbows appeared in the sky this time, which is a very auspicious sign. A dragon-riding Avalokitesvara also appeared next to the rainbow. Chan told us that Lan Zhou was hit by heavy downpour and hail storm yesterday, and Yin Chuan had its turn today. The locals had not seen a hail storm for many years because this is a very dry place in the north west of China which is a sandy highland. I thanked the dragon king for giving rains to this sandy highland in three consecutive days. I had no other words to say but simply felt grateful.  
            On the 11th day, another local tour guide, Guan, who took care of our second tour bus fell sick and needed to be replaced by another person. I gave her blessing after dinner. This morning, Guan came to bid me farewell and told me that she did not need to go to hospital anymore. She slept very well last night and her insomnia which lasted many years was suddenly cured. She kept thanking me and told me that it was just an inconceivable experience to her.
            On the 13th day, we visited the Sha Po Tou in the Teng Ge Lin Dessert. It was touted as one of the Top 10 Fun Places in China. It embodies a vast dessert, Yellow river, mountains and oasis in one location. It was also the filming location for the 2nd and 4th seasons of “Where has my daddy gone?” Today, a sun hallo appeared again. And my right foot has swollen – the sentient beings are indeed suffering in great pain……
            The 14th day was the 15th day of the Tibetan Lunar Month which commemorates the birth, enlightenment and the passing of Sakyamuni Buddha. It was also our last night in Yin Chuan. We would be returning to Singapore tomorrow morning. The entire group went to see the mural arts at Mt. He Lan but I went to a local hospital instead. I took an X-ray picture of my right foot, as advised by the local doctor. He said that there was nothing wrong with my bones; I seemed to have sprained my foot due to too much walking. I just needed to rest and apply a cream prescribed by him. At this time, one of the members sent me a picture showing a rainbow appearing in the sky.  
            The 15-day trip had come to an end. The Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, dragons and protectors of the Dharma appeared daily during the entire trip. I felt deeply touched and felt gratitude for their support. As I could not walk due to my painful swollen foot, I had to be transported using wheelchair or being carried by a member up the airplane. One of the airport crews also helped to carry me down the airplane. I was being helped throughout the flights until I returned to Singapore. I had no other words to say but felt grateful to all the sentient beings for their help.

Acho Rinpoche
12th Jun 2017

Moon Crescent Lake

Jiayu Gate of Great Wall

Group Prayer at night  
Dan Xia Landscape

Vajra Yogini Temple in Wu Wei of Gansu

Sha Po Tou in Teng Ge Lin Dessert

Imperial Tombs of Xi Xia Dynasty

108 Stupas at Qing Tong Gorge of Xi Xia Dynasty
Beautify auras at Jiayu Gate of Great Wall

Sun Halo
Dragon-riding Avalokitesvara

Doubled Rainbows