226: Living Bodhisattva – the Story of My Son Zhang Boyao

“The incredibly great compassion and power of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche saved my son.” I never knew the law of cause and effect, until I met Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. I opened my mind to the greatness of Buddhism, because Rinpoche saved my son at critical point between life and death. Thus I sought refuge beneath Rinpoche to learn and cultivate the Buddha’s teachings wholeheartedly.

My first meeting with Rinpoche was on September 2, 2006. In August of 2006 I asked a fortuneteller to name my new company, and, by the way, to predict my family luck of the year. Seeing the fate diagram of my son, he said, “your son had better be an adopted son of a deity, or he will come upon misfortunes.” I was trembling with fear by his words. This reminded me that when he was born 7 years ago, I asked two fortunetellers to give a name to him, they proposed names with same stroke counts. Since there happened to be one that was identical, so I took it, Boyao, as my son’s name. Coincidentally, both of them told me, “Do not let your son visit a temple to worship deities before 7 years old. When he is at the age of 7, you should implore a deity to be his adopted father, for blessing his life and growth.” I did not quite believe what they said, so I didn’t tell it to my wife in detail. My mother-in-law took my son to temples from time to time. Recently, they went to the temples of Yit-Kuan Tao.

My son used to be feeble and got ill easily. He started to have nosebleed and nightmares very often. He told me that the White and Black messengers from underworld came to him. My son was so timid that we never dared to tell him a ghost story. To our surprise, he had such ghastly dreams.) Besides, he often quarreled and fought with classmates. Being a trouble maker in class, his teacher seemed to hope my son to transfer to other schools. Everything seemed to go wrong at that time. After discussion with my father, I decided to pray at the temple of the Land God in Kuantzuling. But my wife disagreed with that. One of her old schoolmate (Ms. Jiang) had taken refuge in His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. She admired Rinpoche’s superior capability frequently about his merits and virtues to save many people from pain. My wife and I attended “the Great Indiscriminated Amitabha’s Terma Puja for Transferring Consciousness” held and performed by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche two times which the great pujas were attended by 5000 and 10,000 people. My wife has great admiration and esteem for Rinpoche. She insisted on going up north to seek an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

Thus we came to the Jewelry Shop in Taipei where Rinpoche received people in distress. I saw crowded people as entering the shop – some in wheelchairs and some supported walking by others. Rinpoche answered queries and blessed everyone patiently. After a long waiting, it was our turn.

Kneeling down before Rinpoche, he asked kindly, “what do you come here for?” I said that I came for my son’s health. Rinpoche observed my son and said, “Your father and grandfather made a heavy karma of killing, especially eating and killing frogs.” I was astonished, for my father bragged about his childhood talent at catching frogs just a few days ago. He went to the stream to catch a bucket of frogs every day when he was a young boy. Sometimes he had just too many frogs, so he gave some to neighbors. He even enumerated five ways to cook and eat frogs. My father said: “they are good to eat and good for health.” Rinpoche asked me: “Did you do this, too?” I replied: “I was bad at catching frogs and got none of them.” Rinpoche said: “To have an intention of killing is even more sinful than to actually do it.” Actually, I was ignorant and replied to Rinpoche in a rather joking and careless manner. Then Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche turned to my wife and said, “Talk to your husband more. He does not believe in the law of cause and effect. Come to me after he understood it. Come to attend my pujas and your son would become health naturally.” My wife was moved to tears and missed the words of attending pujas. I just thought about going to Land God the next day. Thus we did not register to join the puja.

We felt hungry after leaving the Jewelry Shop, so we went to a buffet restaurant for a feast. My wife called schoolmates to reunion. My son and I were so hungry that we could eat a horse! But we were not feeling well and stopped eating after finished only a plate of food. So we left for hotel. My son had stomachache as soon as he entered the room. I gave him two tablets of medicine and I went to bed with a pounding head. When it was almost 9 o’clock, my son woke me up because he was vomiting. I called for the room service and spent some time cleaning it up. I went to sleep again as soon as my wife returned.

At two o’clock in the morning, my wife woke me up again. My son had stomachache again and started to have fever. I carried him right away to the Chang Gung Memorial Hospital nearby. At first, the diagnosis was “Gastroenteritis” and my son was given an intravenous drip and anti-inflammatory injection. My wife stayed there to take care of him. I went back to hotel again. I was fully prepared to return to Tainan at dawn. My wife called me at 7 o’clock to tell me that my son restored and chattered pleasantly with the doctor on duty.

When it was about 8 o’clock, my son had high fever again, complaining of a colic. My wife sent a text message to Jiang and called me to go to hospital immediately. Three doctors were holding a consultation anxiously because the doctors were handing over to next shift at 8:30). My naughty and energetic son lost his wits all of a sudden. His face turned pale and he was staring at an “electric meter” in front of the bed. He had lost consciousness with a high fever of 40 degrees. The doctors diagnosed that my son was in critical condition. Resuscitation was given at once. Ice pillow, suppository, and any possible means to lower temperature were adopted, but all were in vain. Moreover, my son was seized with a cramp for 20 minutes. The doctors became nervous. Jiang came at this moment. Stealthily, she put a nectar pill in my son’s mouth. Then the cramp stopped. The pediatrician called an internist and a neurologist to hold consultation. The initial judgment was made as “Acute Encephalitis” — my son’s condition is critical. He needs to transfer to Chang Gung Medical Center or ICU and get better treatment. At the time of urgency, we decided to let him stay in ICU. Waiting outside the ICU, the clerk in Jewelry Shop Brother Tsui arrived with concern. She suggested that we asked for help from Rinpoche immediately. That day was Sunday, a regular puja was held.

At 11:30 in the morning, as nurse asked us to enter the ICU, the doctor explained the diagnosis and said, “Do you have any family history of epilepsia?” “No.” I said definitely. “Your son is in critical condition. He is unconscious with Increased Intracranial Pressure, high fever, and dilated pupils. The virus or bacteria might be invading his brain now. This was more serious than enterovirus infection. We have little experience about this kind of unusual illness. Besides, the persistent high fever will cause damage to the brain. He might become a vegetable or dementia even if he survived. Please sign the critical condition notice.” Hearing the words of doctor, my wife was melting in to tears and shivering. We looked at our fainting son in a helpless situation. His body was stuck with various Medical Sensors, both hands were also putting on intravenous drips. Holding his icy cold hands, how could I believe that he, a naughty and living boy, was dying? I can only pray to heaven. I would make my son come back to me at any cost. At 12 o’clock, visiting time was up. The nurse asked us to leave in comforting words.

Jiang, who waited outside the ICU, heard the critical situation about my son. She urged us to go to the puja in the afternoon and pray for the mercy of Rinpoche. Now we can only do whatever we can do in the hopeless position. We arrived at the downstairs of Bodhimandala at 1 o’clock. We could not go up because of no registering beforehand. Jiang went upstairs by herself to beg Rinpoche. About 2 o’clock, Jiang returned and hugged my wife in streaming tears. “With all my effort, I begged Rinpoche to help you. He said that your husband do not believe in Buddhism, ‘If unfortunately his son passed away, he would blame it on the Buddha. They had better ask for help of doctors.’” Jiang begged desperately. Rinpoche gave us a way out: ‘The fruition depends on their repentance and sincerity. Let them prostrate in the venue before Buddhas and bodhisativas and beg the forgiveness from the beings had been hurt by them, until the end of the puja.” Thus we entered the venue on 17F of the regular puja. What a great meeting of hundreds of people that made my eyes wide open. The puja proceeded in grandness and solemnness.

We prostrated behind the attendants. Rinpoche said in the beginning of the rite: “The young man in white, you do not believe the teachings of Buddha. If you cannot believe, it is of no use to do the prostration. You need not do it. You may leave now.” The Rinpoche told all people, “That couple behind you came to me yesterday. I said that his father and grandfather hurt many frogs. He answered me without any remorse or regret that he was clumsy in catching frogs. He does not accept the law of cause and effect. Now they come to me because their son is in critical condition.” I saw my wife prostrated herself and prayed piously. So did I. When it was nearly 5 o’clock, my knees bled because of the hard floor. My wife wavered and could hardly stand up. “Give him a microphone.” “Tell me your name and your son’s name, his Chinese zodiac sign and birthday.” I replied in detail through the microphone. Rinpoche started to chant mantras, perform Dharmas and dedication. Rinpoche then said: “All is well now. Your son is all right now. Go back to see your son.“ Rinpoche continued saying: “Give them blankets and help them to sit down to rest.” My wife had already sat down weakly on the floor. We were helped to sit on chairs. Water and blankets were given. Though I was painful at that time, I felt touched by the compassion and thoughtfulness of Rinpoche.

When puja was complete, all paid reverent homage to Rinpoche. Some disciples of Rinpoche said, “Do not worry. If Rinpoche said it is OK, it is OK. Your son will be Okay.” I called the hospital. The nurse said that my son had just waked up miraculously. His fever had come down, and he asked to go to toilet. We put diapers on him. Please buy some on your way here.” Only up until now did I begin to realize the greatness of Buddhism. I hurried to the outside of Rinpoche’s lounge to kneel and kowtowed three times. I was so lucky to have the help of a “living bodhisattva” to save my son.

Going back to the hospital, we entered the ICU at 8 o’clock of the visit time. My son was lying in bed and murmuring to himself listlessly. He asked for food and to watch cartoon. He was not allowed to eat yet, before finding out the cause of symptoms. All the patients in the ICU were very sick, only my son was naughty and noisy. The nurses could not but make an exception to let my wife stay to calm him down. On September 4th, my son sat in bed playing for the whole day, but he would be out of control if he was injected anti-epileptic drugs for its side effect. On the following day, we came to the Jewelry Shop to express our appreciation to Rinpoche for saving my child. Rinpoche told us: “Your son would leave hospital soon. Do not let him take the anti-epileptic drugs. Remember to join pujas.” This time, I made the registration right away. Firmly gripping the permit, I was in fear of losing the chance to learn Buddhism again.

Chang Zhi Rong’s son(right) was only 7 years old when the onset of symptoms began; he is now 17 years old.

Thanks to Rinpoche’s blessings, my son was transferred to a regular ward shortly. On the fourth day of my son’s hospitalizing, my wife found a lot of translucent sticky ordure like frog’s eggs in the diaper. This made my wife confused and uneasy. “How can stools be like this?” Only until that time, did we truly realize the law of cause and effect, as well the fruition of evil karma.

Going through every check and examination, the causes of the symptoms were not found in any way. Doctors came to us to ask the same question, “Do you have a family history of illness?” My son cried and shouted whenever being injected, but kept quiet when without injection. The nurses were quite troubled by that. It seemed that they would like my son to leave as soon as possible, because this “healthy patient” was so noisy. My son then looked normal and started to eat, however, the doctors insisted to find the cause of symptoms. My son went through all the lab tests, from brain-wave, computerized tomography, blood test, and cerebrospinal fluid test. Especially the last one, my son was in pain for three day and could only lie down on his stomach to sleep. I felt bad for that. Many thanks to Rinpoche’s blessing that we were allowed to leave the hospital 5 days after hospitalization. I applied a written diagnosis, it recorded: unknown encephalitis, unknown Gastroenteritis, and unknown epilepsia. More than 20 examinations showed normal — no bacteria and virus infection. The attending doctor insisted on my son’s taking anti-epileptic drugs. He prescribed 30-days medicines for my son and repeatedly urged us to feed him every day, for at least two and a half years straight, or the symptoms will come back. He also reminded my son to have a subsequent visit on a monthly basis. As much as we appreciated the doctor’s good will, Rinpoche is the only one we trust. The medicines remained intact, yet my son is all right till now.

Chang Zhi Rong’s son and wife, both of them are enormously grateful about being saved by Rinpoche.

We went to the Jewelry Shop to express our gratefulness as soon as my son left the hospital. Rinpoche embraced my son and blessed him for a long time. Then he had my son take 2 nectar pills. His kindness and loving movements were much tender than what a father could be. Rinpoche turned to me afterwards and asked me to see a doctor because my liver was not very well. He showed us with great consideration and we all felt the warmth deeply.

His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has been practicing Buddhism diligently to bless the sentient beings, to resolve difficult problems, to heal patients with terminal illness and to transfer consciousness of the deceased. It is such a blessing for all of us to have such a living bodhisattva with incredibly great compassion and power to stay here in Taiwan. It’s our great luck to have taken refuge in Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. We should learn and cultivate the teachings. We pray for Rinpoche’s long life and constantly remain in this world to rescue numerous beings from miseries.

We pray for Rinpoche’s long life and constantly remain in this world to rescue numerous beings from miseries.

By Chang Zhi Rong
Dec. 13, 2006


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Updated on April 3, 2016