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

2021-07-05
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It’s good to know that there is such a Bodhisattva around. (Yes.) So people who don’t practice Quan Yin Method or anything can pray to him. Even just praying sincerely one time, that’s merit enough to make an excuse for the Earth Store Bodhisattva to save you, to save whoever.

All right. It’s a very touching story. (Yes.) How just a woman, because of love for her mother has made her become such a great Bodhisattva, and having a great vow like that.

OK, “The Division Bodies Gather.” Wow! Division bodies, meaning the manifestation bodies of enlightened persons. One enlightened person has only one physical body, but many, many, many transcendental bodies. So They can do many things, and help many beings, different levels of Heavens, and Earths and hell.

Here it’s about the division bodies of the Bodhisattva Ksitigarbha, Earth Store Bodhisattva.

“At that time, the division bodies of Earth Store Bodhisattva began gathering in the palace of Trayastrimsa Heaven from billions of inexpressible, unutterable, immeasurable, ineffable, limitless, asamkhyeyas of worlds,” meaning He is not in one world, but His body manifests in all different countless, countless, limitless worlds. “They came from wherever hells were found.” Wow. He specialized in rescuing people in hell.

“Due to the spiritual powers of the Thus Come One, each came from his own direction and was joined by millions of nayutas of those who had obtained liberation from the forces of bad karma. All came holding incense and flowers as offering to the Buddha. Those groups that came were irreversible from Anuttarasamyaksambodhi,” meaning the highest Bodhi, “because they had been taught and transformed by Earth Store Bodhisattva. For long eons, they had wandered in birth and death, undergoing suffering within the six paths without even temporary respite. Now, they had reached levels of sagehood due to the great compassion and deep vows of Earth Store Bodhisattva.” What a great Bodhisattva!

“They felt joyful as they arrived at the Trayastrimsa Heaven and gazed at the Thus Come One,” meaning the Buddha. At that time it was Shakyamuni Buddha. “Their eyes not leaving Him for a moment.” It means they were nonstop gazing at Him. I guess it feels familiar to me. Like somebody I know.

“At that time, the World Honored One stretched forth His golden-colored arm and rubbed the crowns of all the division bodies of Earth Store Bodhisattva Mahasattva that gathered from billions of inexpressible, inconceivable, immeasurable, ineffable, limitless asamkhyeyas of worlds.” Asamkhyeyas is very, very immeasurable, uncountable, innumerable already. So not to talk about many, many of that.

Don’t ask me to do that. No rubbing the crown, nothing. This is Heaven’s story. The Buddha was in Heaven. It’s not His physical body that can do that. Even the physical body, even the Buddha, as He was, He could not rub the heads of countless asamkhyeyas and... You know what I mean? A limitless number of beings.

The Buddha said, “I teach and transform obstinate beings such as these within the evil worlds of the Five Turbidities,” meaning five obstacles or troubles, whatever. No good, anyway. Whatever it is, (it’s) no good.

“Causing their minds to be regulated and subdued, so they renounce the deviance and return to the proper. But one or two of ten still cling to the bad habits. For them, I again divide into billions of bodies.” He Himself, Buddha, manifested many bodies, just for two of ten who still clung to the bad habits. Yes, two of ten. But that’s from billions and it becomes a lot, a lot, a lot of beings who are still very stubborn.

“For them, I again divide into billions of bodies and use numerous additional expedient devices. Those with keen roots will listen and immediately believe. Those with good rewards will respond to exhortation and strive to succeed. Those who are dark and dull will return only after being taught for a long, long, long time.” Sounds familiar to me also. “Those whose bad karma is heavy fail to show any respect. My division bodies take across and liberate all those different kinds of beings.” Taking across, meaning across the river and ocean of suffering.

“I may appear in a male body. I may appear in a female body. I may appear in the body of a god or dragon. I may appear in the body of a spirit or ghost. I may appear as a mountain, as a forest, as a stream, as a spring, as a river, as a lake, as a fountain or as a well in order to benefit people.” So walk everywhere with respect. Maybe you encounter a Buddha any time. “I use all these ways to save beings. I may appear in the body of God Sakra. I may appear in the body of Lord Brahma.” Even as a well, river, mountain.

“I may appear in the body of a national leader. I may appear in the body of a Wheel-Turning King. I may appear in the body of a lay person. I may appear in the body of a prime minister. I may appear in the body of an official. I may appear in the body of a Bhiksu, or Bhiksuni,” meaning nun, high monk, high nun. “An Upasaka,” meaning lay person. “An Upasika.” You know, lay man, lay woman, “and so forth to my appearing in the body of a Sound Hearer, an Arhat, a Pratyekabuddha or a Bodhisattva, in order to teach and rescue beings. It is not that I only appear to them in the body of a Buddha. Reflect on how I have toiled for repeated eons, and endured acute suffering to take across and free stubborn beings who resist being taught and continue to suffer for their offenses. Those not yet subdued undergo retributions according to their karma. If they fall into the evil destinies and are enduring tremendous suffering, then you should remember the gravity of this entrustment I am now giving you here in the palace of the Trayastrimsa Heaven. Find ways to liberate all beings in the Saha world,” in our world. “From now until the time when Maitreya Buddha comes into the world, help them escape suffering forever, encounter Buddhas and receive predictions,” meaning initiation and then knowing when you become Buddha.

“At that time, all the division bodies of Earth Store Bodhisattva that came from all those worlds merged into one single form.” He collected all of His manifested bodies from different directions, different universes, collected them all together in one.

“Then He wept and said to the Buddha,” Ah, the Bodhisattva wept. Imagine! We thought the Buddhas don’t cry. And the Earth Store Bodhisattva wept after He collected all the different bodies to Himself, became one single person, then He wept and said to the Buddha... He cried and said to the Buddha, “Throughout long eons, I have been receiving the Buddha’s guidance and from that, I have developed inconceivable spiritual power and great wisdom. My division bodies …” meaning manifestation bodies or transcendental bodies, different bodies, “filled worlds as many as grains of sand in billions of Ganges rivers.” Imagine how many bodies He had.

“In each of those worlds, I transformed myself into billions of bodies again.” First, He transformed Himself into billions, billions of worlds, as many as Ganges River sands. Imagine. And then from that limitless sand body, transforms also into billions of bodies again. So in one transformed body, he transformed into billions of bodies in each different world; a lot of work to do! One physical body, but many transformed bodies, many transcendental bodies.

And I am thinking, in the Catholic world, if a Pope manifests himself in two places at one time, then he is a Saint. So this Bodhisattva can be called a Saint, many, many billion times over and over. I will tell the Pope to make Him a Saint. Bodhisattva, Earth Store Bodhisattva, make Him a Saint now.

“Each body takes across billions of people, helping them to return, respectfully to the Triple Jewels.” Means Buddha, Sangha, Dharma. “Escape birth and death forever, and reach the bliss of Nirvana, even if their good deeds within the Buddhadharma amount to just as little as a strand of hair.” Just a little strand of hair is worthy of merit, even.

“Or even a drop of water, a grain of sand, or a mote of dust, I will gradually take them across.” Just one little merit, as a sand grain. He will use that as an excuse to liberate them gradually. “And help them gain great benefit. I only hope that the World Honored One will not be concerned about beings of the future who have bad karma.” Wow, how nice! It means the Buddha can rest, and the Earth Store Bodhisattva will do it all.

“In that way, He addressed the Buddha three times.” Why three times? Just to make sure the Buddha heard it? I guess it was for the sake of all the assembly. Because one time, maybe somebody heard it, maybe somebody didn’t. So he repeated again, and again, three times. Even though he addressed the Buddha, but everyone should hear it. You see what I mean? (Yes.) Not because the Buddha couldn’t hear one time. Just to let you know.

“‘I only hope that the World Honored One will not be concerned about beings of the future who have bad karma.’ At that time, the Buddha praised Earth Store Bodhisattva and said, ‘Excellent, excellent, excellent. I will help you in this work you so willingly undertake. When the vast vows that you keep making throughout so many eons are fulfilled, and all those beings have been saved, then I will certify your ultimate Bodhi.’” It means probably never. How can Earth Store Bodhisattva ever finish His job? I don’t know. Maybe He will, and (at) that time then the Buddha said He will bless Him to be a Buddha, you know, graduate Buddhahood.

Well, we pray that He can do that soon. But He’s done it so countless eons of times already, suffers so much for all beings. I think we go now. (Thank You, Master.)

It’s good to know that there is such a Bodhisattva around. (Yes.) So people who don’t practice Quan Yin Method or anything can pray to him. Even just praying sincerely one time, that’s merit enough to make an excuse for the Earth Store Bodhisattva to save you, to save whoever. Thank God. (Yes.) OK, see you later, you have a good appetite. (Thank You, Master.)

I’m fine really, I’m fine. I’m just being careful, OK? (Yes.) Because here the ground, sometimes it’s not very (Stable.) flat. And I’m wearing this kind of spiritual weapon. I’m just being careful, all right? If I wear flat shoes, I’m OK. I’m not used to it. Before, I was walking fine, remember? (Yes.) Other retreats, with even higher spiritual weapon, I still can walk around. It’s just this time, I’m not used to it because I’ve been in the mountains and caves too long. I didn’t wear this kind of thing for a long time already, a long, long time, years. So now, I begin to learn to walk again with high heels. Maybe one day, I’ll be able to get rid of them. (You’re doing well, Master. Doing well. Yes, really.) Thank you. (Elegant.) Oh, thank you. Very elegant.

So you don’t have family except your grandma. (No family.) Oh, wow! (Free.) You have a lot of family here. (Yes, exactly.) Big family.

Hallo. (Hi, Master.) Everything OK here? (Yes.) Thank you very much. (Thank You, Master.) You’re cold? (A little bit.) A little bit. (From the air-conditioning.) Air-conditioning, yeah, I know. “Thanks for watching.” Cute. Cute. Cute. Thanks to all of you. See you later, perhaps. (Yes, Master.) Thank you, thank you, thank you. (Thank You, Master.) See you soon. (See You.) OK? (See You. Bye.) (We love You.) (I love You.)

Can hear everything, right? (Yes.) Very clear, right? (Yes.) Really? Everybody? (Yes.) Even next to the TV can hear, but outside TV can hear too? (Yes.) I am so happy. OK, maybe see you later. (Thank You, Master.) Thank you for your love. Love you. Everybody hear everything? (Yes.) Understood everything? (Yes.) Good, very good. Does it help you? (Yes.) Help you to understand more about practice and meditation and karma? Help you? (Yes.) Very good! Then I am very happy. (Thank You, Master. Thank You.) I’m happy, happy. I’ll see you soon. OK? After, maybe, OK? I need to take a break, a little rest, and maybe come to see you later. OK. Ciao. (Thank You, Master.) Ciao. Thank you.

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