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Between Master and Disciples

Earth Store Bodhisattva Sutra: Praises of King Yama & His Followers, Part 1 of 2, Aug. 11, 2015

Lecture Language:English,Indonesian(Bahasa Indonesia)
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Due to the powerful expedient devices of Earth Store Bodhisattva, beings can be freed and can gain rebirth as humans or gods. If they were to then turn around and enter into the bad destinies again, then those with heavy karmic bonds might remain in the hells forever with no chance of escape.

(When all of the disciples that You have initiated and they have affinity and the blessings from You, those that don’t have the surprise of death, do they have advance warning?) Yes, yes, they have advance warning, at least three days in advance. But only if they practice well and do the things that they’re supposed to do. If they committed great offenses and go against my teaching, then it may be different. Maybe the Maya has the excuse to come and seize them anytime, even before their allotted longevity. So, there are such things as early death. There are such things. Not only for outside people, but for initiates as well. Because if you allow the negative power to have an excuse to execute you, then that is your choice. The Master teaches you how to be good, to escape from all of that, but if you don’t want it, then you still have free will. Free will to choose hell. What?

(Just recently I was talking to…) Can you talk into the microphone so that the translation can go to other people? Not for me.

(Just recently I was talking to some of the disciples,) Yeah. (and I was telling them what You just said about if we do the wrong thing, maybe we go to hell. And they were saying, “Oh, Master will just help us to…, we don’t have to go.”)

There are many people who think like that. That’s why right now, they have more restriction. You have to learn all the teachings before you can get initiated. But before they had this kind of wrong view. To break up the harmony of the sangha. Sangha means the group of saints, sangha. It could mean monks. It could mean just you, lay people. Because if you are saintly, then you are in the sangha circle. No need to wear a robe to be a saint. Of course, it would be nicer if I could wear like this, simple life. Simpler life and nobody cares. And then I don’t need to wear all these spiritual weapons. It would be nice for me. But I do what your karma dictates me to do, and your karma is so great. I don’t mean you, group here, but all of you and the world.

And all this is just to break your concept, wrong concepts, about what a Master should look like. It’s not always bald head and kasaya and... But the thing is… OK, this one we read already. The thing is, it’s not just about the quarreling and the worry, it’s the hatred you carry in your heart. This is terrible. Very terrible for yourself how you live with that. You must cut it off, cleanse it. Clean it.

Look at that. Very interesting. Oh my God! Did I read so much? (Yes.) More than half. (Yes.) Very hard-working Master. Listen, even the King Yama… You know what King Yama is? (Yes.)

“He and his followers…” The King Yama has followers! They all came to this Heaven and praised the Earth Store Bodhisattva. So, this chapter, it says, “Praises of King Yama and His Followers.” I thought I’m the only one that has followers. Illusion. Delusion.

We should really thank the past Masters, monks, nuns, scholars, who have taken time to record the Buddha’s teaching after the Master’s nirvana; and also for the past and present persons ‒ lay or monks and nuns ‒ who have really dedicated themselves, sacrificed their time and precious health, or under any difficult situation to translate this so that I can read it to you. We have to thank them. May they be blessed forever by all the Buddhas, past, present, and future. May their merit be immense. May they be liberated forever. Thank you.

According to Buddhism and the believers and the tradition, when you read sutra and all that, you have to put on incense, flowers, and bow to the sutra first, and thank all the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas in ten directions, all respectfully, before you read it. And then you cover the sutra also with (vegan) silk or beautiful cloth. I just make it more popular, more easy, simple. I apologize to all the Buddhas. I say, “If I’ve done something wrong according to the tradition, my heart is full of respect. It’s just that I cannot always do that. So, please, all the sin, whatever I’ve done wrong, is all on me.” At least other people, they hear the names of the Buddhas, according to the sutra, they will get benefit.

“At that time, from within the Iron Ring Mountain...” You know that famous place. Just to talk about that, you get goose-bumps. “Within the Iron Ring Mountain, Lord Yama and his following of infinite ghost kings...” even ghosts have kings, “came before the Buddha in the Trayastrimsa Heaven. They were the Ghost King Evil Poison, the Ghost King Many Evils...” What names! “The Ghost King Great Argument, the Ghost King White Tiger, the Ghost King Blood Tiger, the Ghost King Crimson Tiger.” Tigers have many colors. In hell, it’s like that. “Crimson” It doesn’t mean a beautiful color. It’s glowing like charcoal, burning charcoal. That’s why. “The Ghost King Spreading Disaster...” Now you know what they’re doing, their job. “The Ghost King Flying Body, the Ghost King Lightning Flash, the Ghost King Wolf Tooth, the Ghost King Thousand Eyes, the Ghost King Animal Eater, the Ghost King Rock Bearer, the Ghost King Lord of Bad News, the Ghost King Lord of...”

God, I forgot my glasses. Sorry, I put my poor weary feet up here so my legs don’t go to sleep. When I invited some of your brothers and sisters to my hut, they said, “Master, please sit. We sit, but You’re just standing.” I said, “I’m glad to stand.” Because I sit too long all the time, so whenever I stand, it’s good. And when I’m eating, I jump my feet. When I sit somewhere, I exercise.

“The Ghost King Lord of Calamities, the Ghost King Lord of Food.”

I told you, whatever we eat, other people have to work hard on it. Put spirit in the fruit, in the tree, in the vegetable. That’s why you see them sparkling with Light. Without that, if you eat the fruit without this blessing, Heaven’s invisible blessing, the fruit will not have Light. The fruit will not give you give you any satisfaction. The fruit might give you trouble. Some food does give you trouble because maybe that farmer is not too good. He’s fed up, he’s tired, he didn’t want to, or the vendors or other people contaminate it. So, some fruits, same tree, the same species, but less Light than the others because of all this contamination.

“The Ghost King Lord of Wealth...” so if you’re wealthy, you thank him, “the Ghost King Lord of Domestic Animals, the Ghost King Lord of Birds, the Ghost King Lord of Beasts.”

You see, every species has a king, a lord, a heavenly body or beings or council to take care of them. You see how hard everyone works in the whole universe. So, if you work a little bit for your liberation, try, try hard to make it work.

“The Ghost King Lord of Mountain Spirit, the Ghost King Lord of Birth, the Ghost King Lord of Life, the Ghost King Lord of Sickness, the Ghost King Lord of Danger...” even danger.

When you have danger or trouble, not that this king doesn’t protect you but just you’re allotted to it. He already tries to minimize, but if the sin is big, he cannot. And the Master also tries to minimize or take on some already, but the karma has to be repaid. So, try not to make new karma.

“The Ghost King Three Eyes...” Then we are all ghosts, we have three eyes. You know, wisdom eye. (Yes.) No. “Three eyes” meaning he really has three eyes. Two here and one there. Not like an invisible wisdom eye. It’s different.

“The Ghost King Four Eyes!” (Wow!) Then he must see a lot of things. See all the things going on in the world.

“The Ghost King Five Eyes! (Wow!) The Ch’i Li Shih King,” Chinese. “The Great Ch’i Li Shih King, the Ch’i Li Ch’a King, the Great Ch’i Li Ch’a King.” Wow! “The No Ch’a King, the Great No Ch’a King, and other such great ghost kings.” Wow! They have Chinese kings there, too. Of course, somebody has to speak Chinese, for the great population of China.

“With them were hundreds of thousands of minor ghost kings who dwelt throughout Jambudvipa, each presiding over certain jurisdictions.” So, if you do something bad, they know and they judge you. They record it and they judge you accordingly. So they will give you disasters or accidents or bring you into danger accordingly, or sickness. Or cut off your food, or lessen your drink.

“Flying body” doesn’t mean that it’s so nice you fly in the sky. It’s not like that. If you are into that karma, you just fly forever, tossing here, turning there, bumping into things. You cannot stop, cannot get down. So, don’t think, “Oh, flying, oh,” like “Give me that karma.” No!

“Aided by Buddha’s awesome spiritual strength and the power of Earth Store Bodhisattva Mahasattva, all these ghost kings joined Lord Yama in the Trayastrimsa Heaven and together they stood to one side. Then Lord Yama knelt on both knees, placed his palms together, and said to the Buddha, ‘Praise be World-Honored One, aided by the Buddha’s awesome spiritual strength and the power of Earth Store Bodhisattva, I have been able to come to this great assembly in the Trayastrimsa Heaven and to be joined by all these ghost kings. There is now a small doubt that I should like to express, and we hope the World-Honored One will compassionately resolve it.’ The Buddha told Lord Yama, ‘I will answer whatever you want to ask.’ At that time, Lord Yama looked respectfully at the World-Honored One, made obeisance, turned his head to acknowledge the Earth Store Bodhisattva, and then said to the Buddha, ‘World-Honored One, I observe that Earth Store Bodhisattva uses hundreds of thousands of expedient devices to take across beings who are suffering for their offenses within the six paths of rebirth. I see that He does so unstintingly, without the least fatigue. Although this great Bodhisattva uses His inconceivable spiritual penetration to do such deeds, it doesn’t take long for the beings whom He has helped in gaining release from retributions to fall again into the bad paths.’” Habit.

‘World-Honored One since Earth Store Bodhisattva has such great inconceivable spiritual power, why are beings not able to rely on it to stay in the good paths and to be free once and for all? Please, Buddha, explain to us. Explain that for us.’ The Buddha told Lord Yama, ‘The beings of Jambudvipa have stubborn and obstinate natures.’” You can see.

“‘Difficult to tame, difficult to subdue. This great Bodhisattva continually rescues such beings throughout hundreds of thousands of eons and causes them to obtain liberation quickly. For those beings undergoing retributions even in the worst destinies, the Bodhisattva applies the strength of expedience to extricate them from their own basic karmic conditions and lead them to understand the events of their past lives. But because beings of Jambudvipa are so bound by their own heavy bad habits, they keep revolving in and out of the various paths over and over again as this Bodhisattva labors throughout many long eons to entirely effect their rescue and release. They are like people who became confused and lost from home and mistakenly entered a dangerous path. On that treacherous path were many yaksas, tigers, wolves, lions...’” “Yaksa” means those ugly ghosts who also drink blood of human and animals. “‘… Lions, serpents, and vipers.’”

“‘Those confused people were sure to be poisoned very quickly on that dangerous path. But then they encountered a well-informed mentor, skilled in avoiding the poisons, including the toxins of the yaksas and others. The mentor began to guide the travelers off that dangerous path and told them, “Beware, everyone! What business brought you on to this road? What kinds of special skills do you have to avoid all that poison?” Hearing that, the confused travelers realized they were on a dangerous path and turned back, attempting to escape. The kind mentor then told them to join hands, led them off the dangerous path, and helped them to avoid the lethal poisons. When they reached a safe path, the travelers became happy and at peace. Their mentor then said to them, ‘Take care, confused ones, never go back into that path again. Once on it, it is hard to get off; it can destroy a person’s very nature and life.’”

(Master, are you drinking water?) Who are you? What do you want? (Are you drinking water?) You drinking water? (Are you?) I am? I didn’t want to drink. Why? Does my voice sound bad? Happy? Why are you laughing? What’s so funny? (Your voice, it changed very quickly.) Better? (Yes.) Oh. Because of this? (Yes. Really.) I’m just playing with her. I talk a lot of funny things and you don’t laugh and just say, “Happy?” and then you laugh. Well, then I just sit here and say, “Happy? Happy, happy, happy...”

“‘The travelers who had been confused expressed their deep gratitude, and as they were about to part, the mentor said to them, ‘If you see any travelers, whether you know them personally or not, be they men or women, tell them that the poisons and evils on that path could harm their very natures and lives. Do not allow them to unwittingly bring about their own deaths.’ In the same way, Earth Store Bodhisattva, replete with great compassion, rescues beings who are suffering for their offenses and enables them to be born among humans and gods, where they enjoy wonderful bliss. Once those offenders obtain release from the suffering they experienced in the paths...’” you know, the negative path, the lower path, suffering path, “‘where their karma took them, they should never go down those roads again. They are like the lost people who mistakenly took a dangerous path and were led to escape by a kind mentor,’” a guide. “‘They know how to never take that road again. Moreover, they exhort others not to enter that road by saying, ‘We took that road ourselves when we got confused, but we escaped and now we know better than to ever enter that road again. If we were to set foot on it again, we would get confused and be unable to recognize it as the dangerous path we descended into before. That being the case, we might lose our lives.’ The same holds true for falling into the bad destinies. Due to the powerful expedient devices of Earth Store Bodhisattva, beings can be freed and can gain rebirth as humans or gods. If they were to then turn around and enter into the bad destinies again, then those with heavy karmic bonds might remain in the hells forever with no chance of escape.’”

If the Bodhisattva or gods have helped you to get out of the evil path or the hell, then you don’t, should not do the bad things again because after that you will not be rescued again. This is the law of this world. So, mind it, don’t think, “Master rescued me already and I will do anything I want.” It’s not like that. I mean, a Master must also be fair. Suppose you hurt somebody else and you kill somebody else, suppose that bad, even though you know you shouldn’t, then I have to be fair. Understand? (Yes.) Even though, the Yama would tell me, “Master, You have to be fair. Your disciples already know what’s right from wrong and they still do that, so you have to let me handle this.” You understand now? (Yes.) Would you do the same if you are the Master? (Yes, Master.) Would you do the same if you were Yama? King Yama. (Yes.)

So, do not think that you can do anything you want. Study well all the good teaching, either from me or from Buddhas, and do the right thing, keep the Precepts, go on the straight road. Even if I can go to hell to rescue you, why do you make me trouble like that? Why don’t you just avoid it? For both of us. So, save your time to do good things to others and save me time to rescue other people. If I go to hell, it also affects my body. Inside affects the outside. If I don’t have this physical body, then you probably don’t see the effect. But being in the physical body, everything can be shown sometimes through the body.

I read this sentence again, and you don’t forget. “‘Due to the powerful expedient devices of Earth Store Bodhisattva, beings can be freed and can gain rebirth as humans or gods. If they were to then turn around and enter into the bad destinies again,’” meaning doing bad deeds, then you attract bad destinies. “‘Then those with heavy karmic bonds might even remain in the hells forever with no chance of escape.’” With heavy karma. With lighter karma, maybe. Maybe after some time you can cleanse it. But if heavy one, you’ve been rescued once, you’ve been shown what’s right from wrong and you still continue to do bad deeds, then you’ll be in hell forever.

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