His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s Puja Teachings – September 7, 2014

Before the puja began a disciple, accompanied by his mother, thanked His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for having bestowed upon him this opportunity to get on stage and praise the guru’s merits, as well as to share with everyone an account of how he had met the guru and how the guru had helped and saved him.

The disciple recalled that when he was five years old, he had mysteriously contracted type 1 diabetes mellitus, possibly as a result of a vaccination against Japanese encephalitis. From then on his life had completely changed, and he’d had to take insulin injections daily with every single meal. Later, after he had grown up and gone to England for a master’s degree program, complications of having been sick for more than twenty years had begun to emerge one after another. At first he’d nearly gone blind in both eyes due to a retinal detachment, and his mother had sold a house so that she could go to England and care for him. During his university’s winter break, he had flown to Taiwan for surgery and then back to England, after which he had resumed his studies with vision in just one of his eyes. During spring break, he had gone to Ukraine to undergo human stem cell therapy in the hope that it would improve his condition. Now that he thought about it, using another person’s undeveloped embryonic stem cells to try to cure him had actually been, indirectly, an extension of his own at the expense of that of someone else. As such, he had committed the act of killing, and for this he deeply repented.

It had not been easy, but he had finally finished his studies in England, and in 2010 had returned to Taiwan. The day after arriving something had begun to go wrong with his metabolism, and before long he had been faced with the possibility of having to undergo kidney dialysis. After vomiting more than seventy times within a period of two months, he had lost all hope in living, and had decided to go to the hospital and have a catheter inserted. At the same time, he had also submitted to vascular reconstructive surgery on his left hand so that his veins could be used for dialysis purposes for the rest of his life. In the early stages of dialysis, a temporary Y-shaped tube was inserted through his collarbone and left sticking out of his body for three months; this was the manner in which people were connected to dialysis machines at the time. Later, once the reconstructed veins had grown to maturity, he had begun to receive dialysis intravenously. He would receive two doses per treatment, three times a week, and each treatment had lasted five hours. His life had become nothing but an endless series of dialysis treatments. The needles used in the treatments had been about as thick as a toothpick, and by the end the veins in his hand had become grossly deformed. In addition to the dialysis shots, he had also needed to take his normal insulin shots, so each week he’d had to get close to thirty shots in total.

In the years that he was on dialysis, another retinal detachment in one of his eyes had required the insertion of silicon oil to reattach his retina. This had caused him to only have about 10% of his vision in that eye from then on, and soon he had felt so much despair that his only desire was to die. However, he had forced himself to go on living without giving up, because he had wanted to figure out once and for all what the point of all he had been through was. Only then would he be able to leave this world in peace.

His diabetes had prevented him from eating whatever he wanted ever since he was a kid. After the kidney dialysis treatments had begun, however, he had lost even the freedom to drink water as often and as much as he would like. Later, under the advice of a doctor, they had decided to register him to go on the waiting list for an organ transplant. After a while of hearing no news, his mother had made a decision that had made him feel very conflicted: To donate one of her own kidneys to him. Thus, again heeding the doctor’s advice, they had transferred their entire medical histories to a well-known major hospital in Taipei. This had been the first step toward starting an affinity between them an His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

The kidney transplantation had happened on November 30th of last year (2013). Strangely, the anti-rejection medication he’d taken afterward had caused his only working eye to become severely photosensitive. The intense flashes of light had grown so bright that he could hardly see, so the nephrologist had arranged for him an emergency appointment with an eye specialist. At the time, Dharma Brother Wang, who had seen him and his mother a few times in the past in that major hospital’s ophthalmology division, had just happened to be on duty at the ophthalmology clinic to which overflow patients such as themselves had been sent, so she had finally heard their story. Later the doctor had diagnosed that the disciple’s eye had been temporarily affected by the medication, but that his vision would recover after a while. The disciple and his mother had just walked out the door of the clinic and were about to leave when Dharma Brother Wang had stopped them and asked a question, the likes of which they had never hear in a lifetime of visiting hospitals.

Dharma Brother Wang had asked, “Besides tangible medical treatments, have you ever sought the help of intangible powers? Somewhat taken aback, they had said, “Yes; actually, all along we’ve had friends helping us in that regard.” Dharma Brother Wang had then said something that had completely riveted their attention: “Well, you must not have found the most powerful one out there!” She had then told them briefly how His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had saved more than three hundred victims during the SARS outbreak, and how Dharma Brother Wang herself had obtained help from the guru. She had then informed them of how to register to seek an audience. The disciple had immediately told himself, I absolutely have to seek an audience with this extraordinary master practitioner! Dharma Brother Wang had then gone on to mention the auspicious book, Happiness and Suffering. Thinking the title sounded familiar, they had later discovered that they already had a copy of this book at home; they had gotten it from the dialysis clinic. At the time, the disciple’s mother had simply meant to borrow it and have a look, but the head nurse had told them they could take it home with them, and so they had.

Three days later, on January 11th, they had sought their first audience with His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. The guru had compassionately asked, “How may I help you?” The disciple had reported, “For some unknown reason I have had diabetes ever since I was little, and over the past few years my retinas have been detached and I’ve had to undergo kidney dialysis. Then the medicine I had to take after getting a kidney transplant had all sorts of negative effects on my eyesight. I’m here to implore for your help, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Please allow me and my mother to participate in the pujas.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had told them, “Diabetes results from having heavy karma from killing,” and had then explained to them a bit about what that meant. Next the guru had asked the disciple’s mother whether she had killed any chickens or sheep when she was married and pregnant to serve at banquets or to take as a tonic. She had answered, “More or less, yes” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then said, “That you would say ‘more or less’ means you have no mind of repentance.” Then the guru had explained that repentance meant taking responsibility for one’s actions. Next Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had asked if they had gone vegetarian or not. The disciple’s mother had answered that they could do so. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had said, “You shouldn’t speak too soon.” Only afterward had the disciple learned that the same night after seeking an audience with the guru, his mother had finished eating some leftover seafood that she had bought before going to the Buddhist Center. This had given her a stomach ache that had lasted for several days, and he had then realized just how all-knowing Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche really was.

Later Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had continued to address the disciple’s mother, saying, “Today you wish to help your son resolve his physical ailments. But even if you were to succeed for the time being, what about his future lives? Are you sure you will find a way to solve your problems in the future?” The guru had then said, “If your only reason for coming here is to improve your physical health, then there is no point in imploring to participate in the pujas. Aren’t you happy enough that the organ transplant was completed? It is obvious that you do not have peace of mind.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then said that the unusual acne appearing on the disciple’s face was the result of taking the anti-rejection drugs, and that his having undergone surgery was karmic retribution for having killed people in his past lives. The guru had then given an example using his own family, several of whose members had undergone surgery due to having ancestors who had raised silk worms. Because of all that karma from killing, the males in the guru’s family tended not to live long. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche himself, however, had never had an operation; he had changed his original karma by way of Buddhist practice. After that, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had told the disciple’s mother to think long and hard about what he had said to her that day.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then turned to the disciple and asked, “How old are you?” He had answered, “I’m twenty-six this year.” The guru had asked, “So what do you want me to help you with?” He had said, “I’d like to implore you to show me how to be free of these illnesses that keep barring my way.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had replied, “Don’t think that just because you are so young you don’t deserve to suffer from these sorts of illnesses. Likewise, you should not think that there are many things you want to do just because you have a good memory.” The guru had then given an example of someone even younger than the disciple—only two years of age—who had gotten diabetes. This had happened because the child’s mother had killed a large fish to put in a soup for him to eat, and shortly after eating it, the child had gotten diabetes. Changing the subject, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had said to the disciple, “You should know that were it not for this illness, you would never have thought to come into contact with Buddhism and start learning it. Not everyone can learn Buddhism; no matter what your role or position is, you cannot learn unless you have the right conditions. Thus, from the point of view of allowing you to have the causes and conditions for learning Buddhism, it is you who owe this illness, not the other way around!”

Right then and there he had stared at Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, eyes wide and brimming with tears, struck with a sudden realization of the compassion that had always been hidden behind his ailments. Later, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had told them to go back home and think long and hard about the teachings he had bestowed upon them that day. At the end of the audience, gazing into the distance, the guru had said, “Until you’re ready to come back, I’ll be waiting for you.”

Afterward, Dharma Brother Wang had said to the disciple’s mother, “Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche bestowed teachings upon you, and spoke for quite a long time! I’ve been with the Buddhist Center a long time, but have rarely heard of the guru saying he would wait for anyone to come back.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s unwillingness to speak of anything that would not happen in the future indicated that they did indeed have an affinity with the guru. Dharma Brother Wang had then encouraged them to go home and think it over, and then come back to implore to participate in the pujas. They had felt both shocked and grateful as they went home, where they had then decided they would definitely return to seek another audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

After returning home that evening, they had made the decision to eat vegetarian. The disciple had said to his mother, “In just a few short sentences, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche made me come to a profound and complete realization that my relationship with my illnesses should never have been one of enmity; rather, it should have been one of cooperation and partnership.” His ailments had constantly reminded him by way of the physical pain they caused that he should hurry up and set foot upon the path he should be walking, and that this path was to explore life and learn Buddhism. He had begun to feel very grateful toward these ailments, and whether or not they would ever be cured had ceased to be the most important question on his mind.

After that first audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, they had begun to read the materials available on the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center’s official website. Gradually they had discovered that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had a greater background and wealth of experiences than they could possibly imagine, and was not a so-called A-grade, B-grade, or C-grade guru, but was an A+ grade guru. The disciple had then understood that the person he must follow for the rest of his life was none other than His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

In late January, while inviting them to participate in a holiday visit to the Glorious Jewel Group and its companies, Dharma Brother Wang had mentioned a certain traditional Chinese ointment. To their surprise they had discovered that they had the very same sort of ointment in their home! A few years previously, a friend of the disciple’s mother had brought it over to treat her for a sprained wrist. Hearing this, Dharma Brother Wang had been amazed at the sheer coincidence of that.

That day they had also gone to the jewelry store to respectfully greet Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. It had been their first time seeing the guru in plain clothes. When Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche entered, the disciple had been shocked and had a hard time believing his eyes. He had wondered, How is it that the guru looks so much like Raphael, the great fashion king of French Chanel?! In that moment he had come up with the appellation, “Raphael of the East.” He would never forget the guru’s noble disposition!

At about that time it just so happened that they’d had to return to the hospital for a check-up to monitor his recovery from the organ transplant. The disciple remembered that day well; as soon as they had entered the examination room, the doctor had said that this post-operation physical check-up report was the best one in history! In the meantime, at home, his mother had frequently remarked that she had been eating vegetarian and was quite happy about it.

On February 15th they had sought a second audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. As Dharma Brother Wang had reminded him to do, the disciple had reported to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, “Thank you so much, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, for the teachings you bestowed last time with regard to eating vegetarian.” He had gone on to report that his physical check-up results had indicated that he had made a great deal of progress, said that he would like to learn the Right Dharma from the guru, and implored for him and his mother to be allowed to participate in the pujas. After hearing him out, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had smiled and said to the disciple’s mother, “Before, when I told you two to eat vegetarian, you still harbored a bit of doubt!” His mother had immediately responded, “No, no; I had no doubt at all.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then said, “Well since then you’ve been eating vegetarian quite happily!”

His mother had promptly bobbed her head in agreement and said, “Very happily! Very happily!” Hearing this, the disciple had felt strange and wondered where he had heard this phrase before. As it turned out, it was what his mother had been saying at home! Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then said to him, “So yours was the best post-operation physical check-up report in history!” Shocked, the disciple had thought, Isn’t that exactly what the doctor in the examination room said?  The guru had quoted the doctor word for word, and this had caused the disciple to feel completely mystified! Then Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had told his mother that the disciple had been eating cookies on the sly. At first, the disciple had not remembered doing that, but then he had recalled that one of those days he had indeed eaten a few cookies in secret. Was Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche even aware of little details like that? It was absolutely amazing!

After that, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had told him to temporarily refrain from eating too much cheap food such as snacks sold at convenience stores, because they were bad for his health. The guru had asked a Dharma brother standing next to him whether or not there were any seats left for the Chod Puja being held the following day, and the Dharma brother had replied that there were indeed. So Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had compassionately told the disciple and his mother to register to participate, and said that if the disciple wished to learn Buddhism, he must first be a filial son. As for his ailments, the guru had instructed him not to dwell on such questions as why other people had not contracted diabetes, and had told him that he should not be angry at his illness.

After participating in the Chod Puja for the first time, he had thought of taking refuge in Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, so he had asked Dharma Brother Wang’s advice. She had said, “If you want to implore to take refuge, be quick about it!” This was because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche might hold a refuge puja at any time, and if he missed it there was no telling how long he might have to wait until the next one. Thus, on March 1st he and his mother had sought a third audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, during which he had implored to take refuge. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had said, “I can be very fierce. Aren’t you scared?” His mind had gone temporarily blank; a moment later he had told the guru, “We will do our best!” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had replied, “It’s not about doing your best; it’s about being determined!” He had immediately responded as quickly as he could, “We are determined!” Glancing to the side, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had compassionately granted their wish. The disciple’s mother had then asked the guru whether or not there was any possibility of reducing the amount of anti-rejection pills the disciple had to take, and of using traditional Chinese medicine to recuperate instead. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had said that he could not answer this question with one hundred percent accuracy, but that he could go ahead and see a practitioner of traditional Chinese medicine to get his pulse taken and then talk to his doctor about it.

Next, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had taught them about the attitude they should have when they took refuge in Buddhism. The disciple must remember that he was not simply there to become physically healthy. After taking refuge and receiving Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s blessings, his health would naturally improve, but whether or not his diabetes would be cured depended on his causes and conditions. Their purpose in coming to practice Buddhism should be for the sake of their future lives. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had again said that in order to learn Buddhism, he must have filial piety first and be grateful for his illnesses, without which he would never have had the opportunity to come to this Buddhist Center. Finally, the guru had said that after taking refuge his karmic retribution might manifest more quickly, so he must accept and endure it all happily.

After that, on March 7th, Dharma Brother Wang had invited the disciple and his mother to the Japanese foods store in Dazhi for a reopening launch at its new location, and they had seen Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche there. Looking at a car parked right next to a sports car, the disciple had stupidly asked, “Is Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s car the one next to that bodyguard?” Dharma Brother Wang had replied, “No; it’s the one next to that. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche drives a sports car.” Stunned, he had again felt that this master practitioner in front of him was totally beyond what he had imagined. A few days later, Dharma Brother Wang had passed on a message to them that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had once said that the book, A Biography of Master Milarepa, contained the Venerable Milarepa’s blessings, and that it was available for them to purchase and read.

As it turned out, they had this book at home, too! A few years previously, while having a pair of glasses cut, he’d picked up a free copy at a place on their street corner. All of these various coincidences had left him completely speechless. He had begun to believe that he was destined to walk the path of Buddhism! At the same time, he had been in awe; it was as if the power of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s blessings had already come to their home, long before they had ever met him!

Later he had learned from Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s online Journal entries that having a repentant attitude is essential while learning Buddhism. Thus, on April 12th, he had signed up to seek an audience with the guru, hoping to implore for a repentance CD. This time Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had asked him, “How many times have you read my book?” the disciple had thought to himself, Oh no, I’m done for!  Because he was still unable to see very well out of one eye, he had not read it very many times. Biting the bullet, he had answered the guru, “Twice.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had admonished, “What do you do while you’re at home? Do you think that is just an ordinary book? Don’t think that being sick excuses you from having to do anything! In fact it is exactly because you are sick that you should be more diligent than other people!” At the time the disciple had felt bad for having been so careless; he had not been respectful enough, and truly felt the need to repent! As a result, the guru had told a Dharma brother next to him that for now the disciple would not be allowed to take refuge. After meditating for a moment, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then said that he must read Happiness and Suffering from beginning to end every day for a month, and that if he failed to finish even one day, then he would not be allowed to seek an audience with the guru ever again! After that, the disciple had spend about five or six hours a day, and finally, using the vision of just one eye, had read the book thirty times.

During that month something very wondrous had happened. After he had read the book about twenty or so times, the doctor had arranged an operation to extract the silicon oil from his eye. The disciple was grateful to Dharma Brother Wang for having given him nectar water and a nectar pill before the surgery, and was also thankful that Dharma Brother Chen had specially requested that the attending physician operate on him in person. Just a week after surgery, his vision had recovered from a 0.1 to a 0.7, and now it was at 0.9. His nearsightedness, which was always above 300, had fallen to just 25. At the time the doctor had thought he was joking and said, “You sure are recovering quickly!” He was grateful for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s auspicious blessings.

On May 17th, he had again sought an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, during which he had reported that he had read Happiness and Suffering thirty times. When Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked him what his impressions were after reading it, his mind had suddenly gone blank again. Finally he had answered, “I think the Dharma is very important, and I’m definitely going to pursue it wholeheartedly!” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then turned to his mother and said compassionately that her relationship with her son had lasted for many lifetimes, and that it must come to a perfect completion in this lifetime! The guru had said that he was aware of the worry and hindrances the disciple’s mother had felt while watching her son suffer from ailments from the time he was little, and had said that from that day on mother and son must adjust and change the way in which they related to each other. She should stop worrying over his health, for this was in fact not good for anybody. Likewise, she should not worry about him suddenly dying as a result of his illness. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then said to the disciple, “As long as you practice Buddhism diligently and believe in the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, They will not let you die without first having had an opportunity to learn the true Dharma.” The disciple had felt that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had just brought peace of mind to both him and his mother.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had gone on to say, “Do you know why I asked you to read Happiness and Suffering thirty times? It was so that you could gain a clear understanding that the whole point of learning Buddhism is to become liberated from life and death.” Using himself as an example, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked, “Didn’t you feel more at ease after seeing me? I’m the same as you in that I must face afflictions and problems everyday, but why am I able to constantly help sentient beings? It is because I place the utmost importance on the determination to become liberated from life and death!” Looking at the disciple, the guru had suddenly said, “From now on if you have anything on your mind, just come and talk to me in private, okay?” As Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had spoken these compassionate words, the disciple’s mother had watched from the side, tears streaming down her face the entire time.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had continued, saying that they had not been able to see him in the past due to not having had enough good fortune. If the disciple had seen the guru when he was little, they would not have had to go through everything they’d experienced; nor would they have had to spend so much money on medical treatments. Right then and there the disciple had felt that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche certainly must know about their trip to Ukraine. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then said that they only had the opportunity to see the guru, come to the Buddhist Center, and learn Buddhism today as a result of their gradually emerging good fortune, so they should do their best to treasure this opportunity. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche told him to go home and communicate thoroughly with his mother about the teachings he had heard today.

His mother had then asked Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, “So, given that we’re now going to practice Buddhism so as to become liberated from life and death, should we not go through with the pancreas transplant being planned right now?” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had replied, “I can’t say with one hundred percent certainty, because the doctor is sure to tell you that such a transplant can solve your diabetes problem. However, you must take note that right now you’ve donated your kidney to your son, and your genes are 50% the same. Pancreas transplants are different, however, because the organ has to come from someone else. Thus, some of the variables and possible effects of such a transplant could be fairly major. Furthermore, if there are any side effects, this procedure will not necessarily be good for your son.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had continued: “Where does diabetes come from? It comes from killing. This does not necessarily mean lives he himself has taken. It also comes from breaking the precepts and engaging in sexual misconduct.” The disciple had listened closely to each of the points being made by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. After that, the guru had told them to go home and think carefully about what they had heard that day. Later, Dharma Brother Wang, who had accompanied them to seek audience with the guru, had said that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche truly was very compassionate, and that she had been much moved while standing to the side and listening.

During the puja held the following day, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had again said from the Dharma throne, “Some people think organ transplants can cure them. You should know that being sick today means you should learn to be more humble and practice Buddhism diligently so that you can amend your behavior.” As they had listened, they had thought, Isn’t that exactly what Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche told us yesterday? Right then and there they had felt extremely grateful for the teachings the guru had repeated from the Dharma throne.

The disciple was grateful to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. On July 20th, he and his mother had finally taken refuge and formally become the guru’s disciples. Later, they had been fortunate enough to participate in the puja held during the Daimonji Festival in Japan, too. Coincidentally, the other Dharma brothers on their bus had seemed to all be protagonists from stories they had read in the Journal entries, and they had finally met these people in person. They had been even more full of praise for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s unfathomable ability to help sentient beings.

The disciple would sometimes say to his mother, “Just think; what other master practitioner on Earth has reached such outstanding achievements in Buddhism, has such incredible Dharma powers, is so good at liberating sentient beings, is such a skillful driver, and even has such taste in the clothes he wears?! He really is one in a million!” In those days the disciple had also been receiving treatments at the Glorious Jewel Chinese Medicine Clinic, and every time he had returned to the hospital for a check-up he’d been found to have made progress in great leaps and bounds. His current hematopoietic function was at a hemoglobin level of 14.7, a number so high that it had even startled the doctor, for back when he began receiving kidney dialysis his hemoglobin level had been no higher than 7 or so.

He had once asked the doctor how high a person’s hemoglobin level could get. The doctor had said that if one’s hemoglobin level was between 11 and 13, that person was doing quite well; as for being between 14 and 16, only people living high in the mountains or in areas such as Tibet could have levels that high. The doctor had specially mentioned Tibet. The disciple really was extremely grateful to His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for helping his body to recover at a record rate, and for causing his mother to feel more and more relaxed about his physical condition.

In this lifetime, his parents had given him physical life; His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had given him wisdom life; and his sickness had provided him with the causes and conditions for learning Buddhism. He would definitely practice with even more diligence and humbly amend his ways from now on until he could become liberated from life and death in this lifetime. Over and over he emphasized, “I will do it! I will do it! I must do it! So that I can repay the debt of gratitude I owe the guru, the Buddha, my parents, and sentient beings.”

He was grateful to Dharma Brother Wang for having run out of the examination room to hail them. He thought that that had certainly been the most crucial moment in their lives, and the most correct time to turn around; doing so had finally given them a place to land. Finally, he prayed that His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche would maintain good health and keep turning the Dharma wheel, that his Dharma activities would be spread far and wide, and that the Drikung Kagyu Lineage would flourish forever.

His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche ascended the Dharma throne to preside over the general puja and bestow precious Dharma teachings upon the attendees.

“Before we chant the Great Six-Syllable Mantra ten thousand times today, I would like to reiterate that those of you who have received empowerment in it may recite from the Dharma text; those of you who have not should simply chant the Great Six-Syllable Mantra; and those of you who have not even taken refuge should just chant Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara’s name. If any of you who have not taken refuge plan on not following my instructions, you may get up and leave immediately. Don’t write me any more letters saying you’ve been influenced by someone else and want to chant the Great Six-Syllable Mantra. If you haven’t taken refuge and won’t listen, then why do you keep coming here? You absolutely cannot learn the Dharma if you insist on adhering to your own views or demand that your guru do what you think he should. If you are unable to follow your guru’s instructions, that is your problem, not the guru’s. Back when you were in elementary school or kindergarten, your teachers had so many kids to teach; would they have changed their curriculum just to fit the desires of one individual student? Who do you think you are to demand that I listen to you?

“Why are you constantly bullying the Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, and practitioners? Even while practicing Buddhism, you demand satisfaction for your own desires; you are jealous of those chanting the Great Six-Syllable Mantra because you are not allowed to do the same. I said very clearly that those of you who have not taken refuge should just chant Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara’s name; if you cannot do this, then go on home! Not to mention, you aren’t paying any tuition, so what gives you the right to demand that I listen to you? If you’re just going to adhere to your own views all day, then you might as well stop coming! Why do you come here? Do you think you’re all grown up and can do whatever you want? Well, you can’t; if that’s too much of a disappointment for you, then leave right now and don’t come back again. It’s not like we’ll miss you; there are too many people at the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center already.

“No matter what I say, you refuse to listen. Why are there so many food poisoning incidents in Taiwan? People here dare to do anything because they are afraid of nothing except for being poor. Even those who practice Buddhism have the gall to write me an email complaining of how annoyed they are at not being allowed to chant the Great Six-Syllable Mantra. If they are that annoyed, then they should stop coming! It’s like how some people want to learn the Dharma from me, but they aren’t willing to follow certain of the Buddhist Center’s rules. If that’s the case, they can go ahead and open their own Buddhist center, but they’ll see whether or not I feel like attending. If you talk so much nonsense and have so many problems while learning Buddhism, then you might as well stop coming altogether.

Leading the attendees, His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche chanted the Great Six-Syllable Mantra ten thousand times, and then performed the Ritual of Dharma Protector Achi. The puja came to a perfect completion.

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Updated on January 29, 2015