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Buddhist Stories: “The Hundred-Headed Fish,” “The Peaceful Heaven Being’s Deeds,” and “The Trayastrimsa Heaven Gatherings,” Part 4 of 8, Aug 09, 2015

2021-07-01
Lecture Language:English
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It’s not the physical body, you got it? (Yes.) You know by now, how many people saw me inside their house flying and all kinds of things, or take them flying to the other Heaven and all that? I’m going nowhere. I have gone nowhere. That’s why one of the Buddha’s titles is “Not Going, Not Coming.” Like that.

“Then Ananda came and asked, ‘Praised be the World Honored One. This being from Peaceful Heaven, today offered water, bath and food. In the former life, what has he done to earn such a merit so that his body is so beautiful and shining and so magnificent like that? His appearance is like a beautiful, precious mountain, so magnificent, so majestic. ‘What has he done? Could You please tell us?’ So Buddha said, ‘Ananda, listen, I will tell you. This being, a long time ago, at the time of the Buddha Tỳ Bà Thi (Vipassi), he was a very poor person on the planet,’” probably this planet. “‘Mostly he was going out to do any labor work to earn his living. One time, he heard that the Buddha Tỳ Bà Thi (Vipassi), preaching in the assembly, said that the merit of offering water to the sangha to take a bath is very, very, very great merit. So he was so happy. He wanted to have this kind of merit. So he came home, and he worked harder. He went and asked everybody to give him a job, and did this and that, a little handiwork everywhere. And then he saved all that money as much as he could. And then he used that money and he bought some special things for the bath, everything he could and then also vegan food. And he prepared everything as much as he could. He invited the Buddha and the sangha to come and take a bath and eat.’” Probably it was a small assembly. I don’t think anybody would like to invite this assembly to take a bath here and a vegan diet. You would like that. I’m sorry, this is Indian.

“‘So after that, because of this merit, he was reborn after he died in this Peaceful Heaven.’” You should know, I told you already, but I’ll tell you again, there are many different Heavens, right? You know, right? (Yes.) Even the Astral Level has 120-plus different kinds of Heavens with different names.

“‘Ananda, you should know, this being, it’s not only today that he has invited me and the sangha to take a bath and offered food to us. Even in the time of Buddha Thi Khí (Sikhi), he also went down to the Earth and offered offerings to that Buddha also,’” means from the Peaceful Heaven, he also came down another time and offered bath and food to another Buddha before Him. “‘And then even to the time of the Buddha Ca Diếp (Kassapa), he also came down to do the same like today. He already offered similar to seven Buddhas in seven lifetimes, different Buddhas in different lifetimes. And then in the future, he will continue to make offerings to 1,000 Buddhas in the Golden Era, just like today.’ And then after He said that He blessed this being with another 100 kalpa of kalpa and kalpa, kalpa, meaning another many hundreds of eons, then he will become Buddha, this being from the Peaceful Land. And then he will have all these beautiful titles that are assigned to the Buddha. And then he will save countless, countless beings.’”

I have goosebumps, I don’t know why − too much blessing. Thank You, all of You. Thank You, thank You, thank You.

“So everybody, ‘tôi’” means Ananda, means “I,” “and all the assembly were so happy, happy, happy! And we all said, ‘Oh, the Buddha appearing in the world is so, so, so beneficial to all beings. Even though this person from Peaceful Heaven came down and offered just a little like that, and has so much merit, so much merit.’ And then the Buddha said, ‘Yes, it’s good that you understood all this, very good, very good. The Buddha came out into the world; the only goal is to save as much as possible all beings, to take them out of suffering and let them have merit and blessing to be happy, from this life and the next to the next.’ And then after that He gave initiation. They didn’t say anything, but He let the assembly have the merit of knowing the real, main Dharma.”

What is the real and main Dharma? All the Buddha teachings, talking, they call it Dharma anyway, so what is the main Dharma? I guess it’s just initiation. “And after that, many people attained the levels of maybe coming back one more time.” But that’s just at that time. If they continued, then they won’t come back again. It’s just that the level of the beings attained at that initiation was maybe will come back one more time, or might-never-come-back- one-more-time level. “And everyone, other people were inspired to want to become a Buddha. Everyone was happy, happy!” OK, that’s it. Thank you, thank you.

All right, I promised you I’ll read something, but this is a very long one. We do it one at a time. Oh my God, I don’t know if we can. I’m thinking, I’m thinking. I have a couple more sutras printed out now from the internet. Thanks God, we have it. Because I have some but at home, not here. I mean in the other home. I can’t just take everything with me. I didn’t know I would stay this long. I didn’t think about it.

All right. So now, this sutra is a very, very good one. Actually, very, very good. It explains many things in this world. There is a Bodhisattva. Wow, there are so many names of hells, even, that you don’t know of. The Bodhisattva in this sutra explains all kinds of hells and their names. I guess if other people who don’t practice Quan Yin Method, maybe they heard of some of these, also very beneficial so that they know they really exist. Because the Buddha doesn’t tell lies. What for? This Bodhisattva, His name is Earth Store Bodhisattva. And why He has become Earth Store Bodhisattva, and such, and such, and such. He’s very, very great. This Bodhisattva is a very great person. He comes up and down in this world and in hell to save whoever He can, whoever believes in Him. But then beings, after hearing what He said and then change their way of life, then later fall back into the old habit again, so giving Him a very difficult job. But life after life, He does this.

Wow! I just read a little bit, and then if we have time, we’ll continue. If we don’t have time, then another day, another year, another lifetime.

You understand now why in the old time, people wanted to become a monk under Buddha’s guidance? Because they have to go there and hear the Buddha day after day, and write it down, like in college. And keep it in order to understand or to know all that. Then when they go out in the ten directions they can preach to other beings who have not been able to see the Buddha. Even just one sutra like this, you have to stay another two months, or one month. So, imagine… that’s why. And the Buddha has many sutras. He lived very long. He became enlightened at about 28, 30 years old. And He lived until 80-something. Fifty-plus long years, and then He preached all the time, most of the time. And Ananda knew it all. And whatever he didn’t remember, or he was not there, then someone else noted. So, after the Buddha Nirvana, they assembled together and recorded all of this for us. And this is just one of many, many, many. Very interesting, very interesting, the life of the Buddha. Wherever the Buddha goes … but you must understand, I have to tell you something.

Like yesterday, we talked about the Bodhisattva Maudgalyayana. (Yes.) Yeah, something like that. Number one magician, magical, powerful. And even though you heard Ananda say that he was flying together with the other disciples to this and that and that, but you must know it’s not physical. Not physical. Maybe he just appeared to this old man, monk, to try to teach him things. So in the spirit, in the meditation time, he took this old monk to go visit different hells. Because the hell that they visited, it cannot be manifested on top of the beach, any beach like that. If they both flew like that away and then flew back and slowly descended to the Earth in front of the Buddha’s ashram, then at least one or two people would have seen it. And then they would tell all the young monks. And then they wouldn’t have to be so arrogant with him since that day. But they still didn’t know. Nobody knew. Until later, the Buddha told them.

So inside, just like sometimes you say you see me flying through your window, or fly to your house, and comfort you or help you in times of need, or just come to visit you. I’m not flying anywhere. Don’t ask me to do the show. It’s not the physical body, you got it? (Yes.) You know by now, how many people saw me inside their house flying and all kinds of things, or take them flying to the other Heaven and all that? I’m going nowhere. I have gone nowhere. That’s why one of the Buddha’s titles is “Not Going, Not Coming.” Like that. So do not expect that one of my so-called great disciples holds your clothes and takes you up on top of the coconut tree outside or something. All these have to be seen through the wisdom eye. If you practice hard enough, if you have good affinity, then you will see it, like the Hong Kong sister or the Aulacese (Vietnamese) − American sister there, or many others.

The thing is, probably more of these are recorded at Buddha’s time because they don’t have anything to record, so Ananda remembered everything and then they wrote it all down. But I gave you, each one, a diary book, and you write down all of your stories. We don’t always have time to assemble and everybody tells their miracle stories to me or to everyone. Mostly when you say it, I say, “OK, be short. Just make sure, be short – symbolic.” I don’t even let you tell all the stories that happened to you yet even, during your meditation, or without meditation even. Inside miracles, outside miracles – tons, tons, tons. We can print also, many sutras, and then the later generations find it and read it to their children, just like today – possible! You can write all your stories. I cannot always hear you, but if you write in a book and then you leave it here and I come back, and sometime I will read it.

Another thing is maybe possible, that at the time of the Buddha, the beings that He rescued had a greater affinity with Him or had a higher consciousness. Indian people, even whoever is born in India, have a spiritual background, easier to accept the Buddha’s teaching, and easier to assimilate, and easy to practice. I don’t say all are like that, but at that time, even more than now. At that time, life was more simple. Almost 3,000 years already, or even more, life was more simple. People’s minds were more purified, so it was easier for them to have more experience – they can see things like this.

So everything that seems like miraculous phenomena in here is all seen by the wisdom eye. Understand? (Yes.) All right, good. Just like one sister said she saw a Heaven Gate here and some beings come down from Heaven, and Bodhisattvas come around and all that – she saw it. But many of you don’t see. And if she tells you, then Ananda would write it down, and then tell you later. All right.

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