007: I Am Not a Buddhist Yet, But I Have Witnessed the Sublimity and Compassion of the His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche

My wife Yinxi had started to feel unwell at the beginning of 2008. She often felt pain in arms and her head ached whenever exposed to the wind. We kept considering it a result from repeated colds. However, her condition worsened in May and June and she then suffered from frequent asthma symptoms. By July, she would have to take several breaks just to climb the stairs up to the 4th floor.

I was terribly worried because Yinxi had had breast cancer ten years ago. I wondered if this was a recurrence of breast cancer. However, a master she had firm faith in kept telling her that it was definitely not cancer. Additionally, Yinxi had a fear of the treatment which she had undergone previously and might hence try to avoid it psychologically. As a result, she wouldn’t go to the hospital for an examination.

Until July 20, Yinxi felt pain and was unable to sleep on her back. She also suffered from shortness of breath. Finally, she agreed to go to the hospital to have a check-up. We went to the Zhongxin Clinic on the recommendation of a friend. When the doctor had her take an X-ray, he found pleural effusions filling up 4/5 of both her lungs, as well as tumors in the lungs.

examinations. The doctor notified us that it was a recurrence of breast cancer with distant transfer and the cancer cells could be seen in the pelvis as well as the lungs. The only help the hospital could provide was chemo therapy, but they also said that the treatment would not be able to perform a thorough cleansing of the cancer cells. If we decided not to adopt the chemo, Yinxi would not live long. Even if we did, there was still no guarantee.

I would never forget that scene. Upon walking out of the clinic room, I asked the nurse in private about Yinxi’s cancer stage. The nurse looked at me as if there wasn’t any hope for us and said, “Terminal stage.”

From then on, I felt that the hospital would be of no help to us.

During that time, Yinxi’s colleagues in the Shanghai Bank learned about her medical condition. A Dharma brother, Liu Zhihe, gave us the address to the Glorious Jewel Jewelry Company and insisted that we go see the His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Yinxi’s condition was poor and she asked me to see Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche on her behalf.

Yinxi had studied Exoteric Buddhism and was a devout Buddhist. Nevertheless, I was not a believer of any religion. Before she fell ill, I had often driven her to puja venues, but I basically didn’t have any particular feelings about Buddhism. I even criticized it with my own opinions and had a sort of bias against Buddhism.

But at the moment when I was in such a state of utter stupefaction, I could not think of anything else but my wife in the way that whatever would benefit her was OK with me. Therefore, I went see Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche on August 7th.

Upon arriving at the Glorious Jewel Jewelry Company, I took an enrollment number by Dharma Brother Lai Guanyun’s help and then waited. I did not know why when I looked at Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s venerable appearance, I felt the power which was beyond description. Previously, Yinxi had advised me earnestly and kindly, yet still failed to move me to believe in Buddhism. However, this time I was convinced that I would receive help here.

When Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche kindly inquired about the purpose of my visit, I told Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche about Yinxi’s condition and asked if she should undergo the chemo therapy. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche enlightened me with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s own personal example of having previously having cancer and hoped that Yinxi could come see him in person.

I told all this to Yinxi and she subsequently decided not to undergo chemo therapy, handing herself over to the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Had I been my previous self, I would have considered her decision a superstitious one. Nonetheless, after I have met with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, my faith was even firmer than Yinxi’s.

On Saturday of that very week, I took Yinxi to see Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche told us her disease was related to her karmic creditors and bid Yinxi to repent. Yinxi besought Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to allow us to attend the pujas and was granted permission by the compassionate Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

As we started to attend the pujas, a miracle took place in me as a secular person. Having suffered from pain for nearly half a year, Yinxi no longer complained about pain from then on.

We continued to attend the pujas and visit Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, who would then mercifully give Yinxi blessings and enlightened us. In October, Yinxi asked to be allowed to take refuge. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said he had never promised to take anyone under Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s refuge in such a hurry. Nonetheless, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche granted her request at once. Both Yinxi and I were absolutely delighted to receive the help of a great practitioner.

Thereafter, Yinxi merely had problems such as shortness of breath and difficulty sleeping and was freed from the excessive pain felt by other end-stage cancer patients. At the end of October, Yinxi’s condition declined. She could not collect enough strength to walk down the stairs anymore and had to breathe with the help of an oxygen tube at all times. It was at this time that the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center notified us of a conversion ceremony to be held by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche on November 2nd.

On the day of the conversion ceremony, Yinxi had little strength but still insisted on attending the ceremony. Thereby, having the Dharma brothers hold the oxygen bottle for her, Yinxi sat in her wheelchair and sought refuge in Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, hence becoming a disciple of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s.

On the next day, Yinxi suffered from shortness of breath, so we went to the emergency room of the National Taiwan University Hospital. We had been there several times to withdraw her ascitic fluid, but we had an indistinct feeling of insecurity that day. After her ascitic fluid withdrawal, Yinxi told me that her condition was not improving and she still needed to gasp for air. Subsequently she went into spasms. It occurred to me that Dharma Brother Huang Youhong had spoken to me on the day of Yinxi’s conversion. She had told me to call the Jewelry Company immediately if there was an emergency and so I called. A Dharma brother instructed that I should ask Yinxi to contemplate Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and recite the Buddha’s name. Yinxi acted accordingly and her spasm stopped at once.

That afternoon, Yinxi suddenly sat up, looked into the distance, and called out, “Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.” She then asked me to recite the Six Syllable Mantra with her. I asked if she wanted to go see Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche later and she agreed right away. The hospital wouldn’t let her leave due to her critical condition unless we signed a waiver. Without any hesitation, I put down my signature and took Yinxi to the Jewelry Company.

At the Jewelry Company, Yinxi wondered whether she should stay at home or remain in the hospital, so she asked Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for advice. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said that it would make no difference, so we could make the decision on our own. Nevertheless, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche told Yinxi not to worry because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche would protect and take good care of her. Additionally, he bid her to remember the name “Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche” and her own Dharma name.

We went straight home as soon as we left the Jewelry Company. After returning home, Yinxi slept calmly on her back for two hours. Such an incident had never taken place during the previous six months.

Yinxi woke up at around ten p.m., the only thing in my mind was to ask her if she still remembered her own Dharma name. Yinxi was a bit puzzled when I asked this question of her and could not answer accurately at first. She then made me ask her the question repeatedly so that she could memorize it. Subsequently I grabbed some paper and a pen and had her keep writing down her own Dharma name to prevent her from forgetting about it. She continued writing until two a.m..

The next morning, Yinxi asked me to turn the computer on. She wanted to do some funds transfer via online banking because she didn’t want to have any debts owed to anybody. I, with great reluctance, saw that she struggled with her weak condition and tried to read the account numbers on the screen so as to transfer the funds one after another. Having completed the task, Yinxi seemed to relax and continued to sleep through the afternoon.

During the afternoon, I asked if she wanted to go see Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, and she said yes.. At the Jewelry Company, Yinxi merely besought Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to conduct the Phowa Dharma for her. The compassionate Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche agreed. Walking out of the Glorious Jewel Jewelry Company, a Dharma brother, Youhong, reminded us to call the Jewellery Company no matter how late, if there was an emergency. In the mean time, though I sensed that Yinxi’s condition was poor, I actually felt secured.

Upon arriving home, Yinxi, unlike her previous self who had a little remaining strength, simply lay prone on my back when we went upstairs, it was as if she was releasing herself. After going into her room, she finished her dinner and lay on the bed powerlessly, unable to speak out. Once in a while she would open her eyes. During these times I would waste no time and remind her of the name “Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche” and her own Dharma name, to which she would then faintly nod.

At around ten p.m., her whole body started to sweat. I picked up on this peculiar situation and began to recite the Six Syllable Mantra. When it was one thirty a.m., I noticed her condition began to stabilize and decided to take a nap beside her. At three a.m., I suddenly woke up and got an immediate feeling that Yinxi had passed away. I got up to check and saw that she had already drawn her last breath. However, ever since I had fallen asleep, her posture had not changed a bit. Additionally, there was no sign of suffering or struggle.

At once I called the Jewelry Company and left a voice message. I woke my daughter up and started to recite the Six Syllable Mantra. At around ten a.m., Dharma Brother Lai called and said that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was going to conduct the Phowa Dharma for Yinxi. All we had to do was recite the Six Syllable Mantra beside her. On hanging up the phone, some of our relatives arrived and we recited the mantra for Yinxi together.

About forty minutes passed and Dharma Brother Lai told us on the phone that the Phowa Dharma had been completed and wanted me to touch Yinxi to see if the crown of her head was warm and her forehead cold. I verified the phenomena myself. This was something truly unbelievable.

Yinxi had bid us not to shed a single tear. After she was gone, my daughter and I did not grieve for her. I missed her, but did not cry dramatically as seen on TV. Thereafter, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche mentioned this during the puja. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said due to the fact that the deceased had been freed from worries and sorrows, her family did not have to bear the weight of immense sorrow. Maybe people would think that I am cold-blooded, nonetheless, I sincerely feel happy for Yinxi because she had received the best protection from Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

On the day of her cremation, I saw a clean circular hole in Yinxi’s skull, an auspicious sign resulting from the perfect completion of the Phowa Dharma which is something that can not be explained by medical science. At the sight of it, I felt overwhelmed by emotion as well as gratitude.

Though I am not able to take refuge and become a disciple yet, I am truly grateful to the compassionate Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for everything Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has done for all us sentient beings.

Previously, had known nothing about Esoteric Buddhism, but the compassion and sublimity of the Buddhas, Bodhisattvas and the His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has truly moved me to my core.

Lin Zhenhong

Updated on February 7, 2009