687: Thanks to the Guru, I Have Returned to a Place of Eternal Refuge

“As a symbol of my obeisance, I would like to make prostrations before His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang, the Lineage Gurus, the Buddhas, the Bodhisattvas, and Dharma Protector Achi! I am Chen Peiwen of Group Five, and my Dharma name is Huitu Drolma. On June 2nd, 2013, I took refuge in His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. I am grateful to the guru for having bestowed upon me this opportunity to share with my Dharma brothers, as well as all of the believers here today, an account of how I formed an a connection with His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. I would also like to repent to the guru for my wrongdoings.

“Firstly, I would like to thank His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for allowing me the good fortune to come in contact with Glorious Jewel by way of a causal condition that came about while my family was buying a house. This in turn enabled me to take refuge in, and begin to learn Buddhism from, the Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. In 2011, my family purchased Dharma Brother Xu’s house in Tainan. This occurrence was a turning point that formed a connection between us and the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center.

“At the time, Dharma Brother Xu’s and Dharma Brother Li’s family had decided to move up north in order to be closer to the guru, so they had entrusted the selling of their house to a real estate agency. My family and I were searching for an apartment with the help of a Tainan broker. After looking at a place on February 28th, we walked outside, where the broker casually pointed and said that a shop at the intersection facing the apartment was for sale for a certain amount. The broker had only been hinting at the price for comparison purposes, but to my surprise my mother said, ‘Alright, let’s go take a look then.’ No sooner did we set foot in the doorway of Dharma Brother Xu’s old house than my mother suddenly chirped, ‘I like this house very much.’ Right then and there, I asked the broker to put in a bid for us. I am grateful to His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for having allowed me and my mother to see this house, which was once a Glorious Jewel Japanese Grocery store and which had a Glorious Jewel Group sign hanging over it. Later, Dharma Brother Xu told us that when he first hung up that signboard, a rainbow appeared in the sky.

“On April 1st, through contact between brokers of the north (Taipei) and the south (Tainan), we met with a real estate agent of the Glorious Jewel Group named Miss Bai for the first time. She said, ‘Our boss tells us we absolutely must not cheat anyone.’ I suddenly got a really good feeling about this boss. When I learned that he was a lay Rinpoche, my heart was filled with incomparable joy. On April 4th, Dharma Brother Xu and his family traveled south to sign over the deed.

“Contrary to how we imagined the purchasing and sale of a house would be, the process was not at all tense; as soon as we met Dharma Brother Xu’s family, it felt as if we had all been friends for a very long time. A practically seamless connection was formed between us, and in no time Dharma Brother Xu’s family began to tell us stories of how His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had saved sentient beings. Miss Bai also told of how her younger brother had been liberated by the guru, and Dharma Brother Xu then shared many experiences with us, including the dire hopelessness they had felt prior to taking refuge due to infertility, the smooth birth of their lively baby girl that happened after they had taken refuge, and how she had fallen down the stairs when she was two years old yet had been compassionately saved by His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and cradled by his countless emanations. (For a detailed account, please refer to Chapter 9 of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s Countless Emanations on the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center’s website.) That deed-signing meeting seemed more like a wonderful storytelling session than a business deal; the signing of the property deed was merely mentioned in passing, and as we continued to listen with keen interest to the Dharma brothers’ stories, our hearts were filled with incomparable praise.

“On the day the deed was signed, the Dharma brothers mentioned that every year Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche presides over the Great Indiscriminate Amitabha Puja for Transferring Consciousness, and that during that puja no major benefactors are honored. The lamps are lighted by people who have drawn lots to do so in a completely fair process, and the guru does not hold these pujas for personal gain. Upon hearing this, I felt genuine praise well up from the bottom of my heart. In the past I had come in contact with Exoteric and other Tibetan Buddhist centers, and from what I had seen, just about every one of them had experienced a great deal of strife while trying to raise money and please the major benefactors. I had also noticed that practically all of these Buddhist centers tended to fret over their lack of believers and disciples to the point that they inevitably reverted to flattery and enticements. These recollections caused me to feel profound praise for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s ability to benefit sentient beings with such equality and compassion. This was an extraordinary achievement of enormous wisdom and compassion. I felt so grateful to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche that I immediately signed up to participate in the Great Indiscriminate Amitabha Puja for Transferring Consciousness, as well as the Grand Memorial Puja for Lord Jigten Sumgön.

“On his way down to sign the deed, Dharma Brother Xu had brought with her many treasures to share with us. Because of this, that day we purchased a copy of Happiness and Suffering and some traditional Chinese ointment, and then arranged a meet-up with her to go to the jewelry store. I still remember the first time I went north to visit that establishment. On our way there, Dharma Brother Xu told me, ‘Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche knows his disciples do not have enough good fortune, so he hopes that we all can have treasures in our homes. How else could such ordinary people as we possess such priceless possessions? Also, the most important thing is that every cent Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche makes is used to support the Order and to benefit sentient beings.’ Later, after bumping into Dharma Brother Zeng in the restaurant, she said that while traveling one time she had met an auctioneer. He had praised her, saying, ‘The jewelry you are wearing must be worth tens of millions!’ Dharma Brother Zeng had replied, ‘Not at all! Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche allows us to purchase these treasures at a huge discount.’ We can only say it is impossible for us to appreciate the real quality and worth of these jewels!  I am grateful for all that His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has bestowed, as well as for the causal condition that arose by way of the jewelry store from which I learned some principles of life that are more precious than any jewels.

“In April of 2011, I ordered a ring with the Glorious Jewel logo on it and a jade pendant. A week later the jewelry store got an extremely magnificent and pleasing jade Avalokiteshvara pendant in stock. After making an inquiry for me, and obtaining instructions, about it, a Dharma brother at the jewelry store called to inform me that it would cost a bit more than the combined price of jade pendant and the ring with the logo . This gave me pause, for its price was higher than my budget would allow. The Dharma brother then reassured me, ‘The jade pendant you ordered before can be changed into an Avalokiteshvara pendant.’ Just then I had a greedy thought, and blurted, ‘So the ring with the logo can be changed, too?’ The Dharma brother said sternly, ‘Of course you may exchange it, if you really must; however, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche teaches us that we should speak truthfully and keep our promises.’ I immediately felt very ashamed of the mistake I’d made. After some consideration, I decided to stick with my original plan. The incident had engendered in me a deep gratitude for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s auspicious teachings, so I thanked the Dharma brother for her reminder. This principle of ‘speaking truthfully and keeping one’s promises’ might seem simple on the surface, but it is actually quite difficult to put into practice!

“I would like to take this opportunity to repent. Before the incident I just mentioned, I had grown far too accustomed to going back on my word. This was true from minor affairs, such as returning, or exchanging, items I’d purchased after changing my mind about wanting them, to major events such as breaking off an engagement to be married. In my selfishness I only ever considered my own point of view, and I caused suffering in many people while I was trying to get what I wanted. This jewelry-purchasing incident revealed my evil habit to His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. For this I feel extremely repentant, but more than that, I feel extremely grateful. Ever afterward I continued to remind myself to use honesty and reliability as lessons with which to reinforce my Buddhist practice, as well as to be careful what I promised. Gradually I came to realize that to be able to genuinely speak the truth and keep my promises, I must put the viewpoints, feelings, gains and losses of other people above my own. Sometimes I had to deliberately ignore my own good and bad feelings, put my own prospects of gain or loss aside, and overcome my own selfishness with a strong willpower. In short, I needed to learn that ‘principles are always more important than gains or losses,’ as demonstrated by His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

“The more I came into contact with the jewelry store and listened to the Dharma brothers share their experiences, the more I began to appreciate how truly praiseworthy and outstanding Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was. Dharma Brother Wang told me that the reason the guru had established the jewelry store in the first place was that after noticing a lack of good fortune in his female disciples, he had hoped that wearing jewelry like this might increase their worth and good fortune. I still remember sitting at the dining table together, and how choked up Dharma Brother Wang got while telling me of her gratitude for the guru’s benevolence. The other Dharma brothers at the jewelry store informed me that the gemstones sold there were all natural and had not been heat-treated, unlike most gemstones in an industry where such practice was taken for granted. In the jewelry industry, such natural gemstones that have not been heat-treated are priceless and cannot readily be bought even when one has money; some people, no matter how rich they might be, are unable to find such treasures their entire lives. ‘The reason we are able to obtain these treasures,’ a Dharma brother told me, ‘is that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has been in the jewelry industry for many years, so has accumulated a wealth of experience and has adhered to his reputation established on the principle of good faith. Only under the protection of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s prodigious good fortune are we able to have access to such precious treasures.’

“Furthermore, a Dharma brother once told me that she had purchased a starlight sapphire ring, but that the gem had fallen out twice. Although it had been found, she had repented for not having sufficient good fortune to keep the sapphire on her finger, and had been too embarrassed to mention it. To her surprise, after a short time Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had asked the jewelry store employees to tell her to bring the ring back to the store. After examining the ring himself, the guru had confirmed that there had been a problem with its inlay work, so had immediately gotten out three starlight sapphires of even better quality and greater beauty for her to choose from. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had then given instructions for the ring to be redesigned, and had exchanged her ring for one of much better quality—while only charging a tiny fee entirely disproportionate to the labor involved. Despite the extreme rarity of starlight sapphires among gemstones, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had been conscientious and responsible to the end without thought to the cost. After telling us this story, the Dharma brother involved said, ‘This was bestowed by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche!’ I am grateful to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for again demonstrating that ‘principles are always more important than gains or losses.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s business principles are founded on a desire to keep sentient beings from suffering losses, and in every case the guru tries to protect sentient beings.

“Not long after signing the deed, Dharma Brother Xu called me and said, ‘I’d like to take you to seek an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.’ I immediately felt very nervous; seeing Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche would be an immeasurably auspicious event! However, I knew in my heart that I must grasp this causal condition, so I replied timidly, ‘Okay, but I don’t know what I should ask.’ Dharma Brother Xu then reminded me to implore for my father’s liberation. This was how I obtained the opportunity and causal condition to seek an audience with the guru for the first time.

“During my first visit to the Buddhist Center, while standing in line to seek an audience, I felt rather cold because my constitution is such that my body temperature tends to be lower than others. However, as soon as I was in front of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, a burst of heat welled up from the pit of my stomach. This made me feel very warm, and gave me a sense of the great power of His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s blessings. As I knelt before the Rinpoche, he said, ‘What can I do for you?’ I answered, ‘I implore you, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, to transfer my dad’s consciousness for him.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked, ‘Transfer? Transfer it where?’ I felt extremely ashamed, for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche obviously knew that I did not have sufficient faith and respect. I answered, ‘I don’t know where my dad is right now.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked, ‘Did your father eat meat while he was alive?’ I answered, ‘Yes.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche went on to ask, ‘Did he practice Buddhism?’ I answered, ‘No.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said, ‘If he ate meat and did not practice Buddhism, then he is in the Hell Realm, of course.’ His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche then said, ‘A transferal of consciousness cannot simply be bought with money; as you can see, I have not had any lamps lit here in exchange of money, nor do I honor any donors. A so-called transferal of consciousness requires the children of the deceased to form an affinity with the compassion of the Buddhas and the Bodhisattvas; only then can the deceased truly be liberated.’ I nodded in agreement, my heart full of gratitude and praise. His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche then asked, ‘How many sons does your dad have?’ I answered, ‘Two.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said, ‘If your dad has two sons, then why have they not come here?’ After thinking it over, I thought to myself, If I asked my younger brother to come, he definitely would, but I’m not sure about my other brother. Before I opened my mouth, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche compassionately said, ‘If you didn’t ask them to come, that’s your problem. If you asked them to, yet they still did not come, then that is their problem. You may come back next week again.’ I am grateful to His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for not forsaking sentient beings, and for having bestowed upon us another opportunity.

“I would like to take this opportunity to repent for my not having believed in cause and effect back then; I did not know to repent immediately and begin to accumulate good fortune for my father’s sake. I wasted a great deal of His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s time and energy. I am also grateful to the guru’s compassionate admonishment when he led the disciples and believers in a recitation of the Sutra of Bodhisattva Ksitigarbha’s Fundamental Vows on New Year’s Day of 2013. During that puja, the guru said, ‘None of you who come seeking an audience knows where your deceased family members are. There has never been anyone who believes in cause and effect as profoundly as Bodhisattva Ksitigarbha, who knew that his mother—not having practiced Buddhism—had certainly fallen into the Three Evil Realms.’ I suddenly felt extremely repentant for my wrongdoings, for not having been filial, and for not having believed deeply in cause and effect. From then on I felt an even deeper gratitude for His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s compassionate teachings.

“The week after my first audience with the guru, I took my younger brother and his girlfriend with me to seek an audience with Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. As soon as I knelt down, I reported to the guru, ‘Rinpoche, this is my younger brother.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche then asked him, ‘Are you still in school? Or are you working?’ My brother answered, ‘Right now I’m working at an architectural firm.’ Then Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche bestowed teachings that focused on my younger brother’s work ethic: ‘You must not wait to be scolded and then act; you should think of things before your boss does. This is because even the tiniest of errors could cause your boss to suffer great losses, or even result in death.’ Next, His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche compassionately said, ‘I am not actually the one who is berating you today; I’m scolding you on behalf of your father. He once gave you the same advice, but you did not listen.’

“I am extremely grateful to His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Having lost his father at the age of three, my younger brother once told me the regret he felt that he had no memory of him. I thought he must wish he could have been taught by our father, and I felt that it was unfortunate that my brother had been unable to hear any fatherly advice from him, for our dad passed away from this Earth long ago. While alive, my father was an assistant professor of pharmacology. He was a very serious and strict sort of person, so would certainly have disapproved of my little brother’s work ethic. I am grateful to His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for allowing my brother, who lost his father at such an early age, to feel the warmth of such fatherly teachings.

“After that, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche turned to me and asked, ‘What did I say to you last week?’ I replied, ‘You told me my dad is in hell.’ The guru said, ‘The reason I instructed you last week to bring your younger brother here with you was that your father was an extremely traditional Chinese man, and he would definitely have wanted his son to come here.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche then asked my father’s name and zodiac sign, as well as whether or not we could eat vegetarian. We both replied, ‘Yes, we can.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche then granted us permission to participate in the Chod Puja to liberate our father.

“My little brother’s girlfriend had come with us to seek an audience that day, too, because her mother had bone spurs and had not been able to decide whether or not to have an operation. I therefore finally reported, ‘This is my younger brother’s girlfriend.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche smiled and said, ‘Very good!’ Pointing at my little brother, the guru said to his girlfriend, ‘If he doesn’t change after listening to what I just said to him, then you should ignore him for an entire week.’ The guru then continued addressing her. ‘Your mother’s bone spurs are a manifestation of karmic retribution resulting from her having killed fish in the past. If she doesn’t have an operation, she will be in pain. On the other hand, surgery can be risky. You should go home and talk it over with your family.’ After our audience with the guru was over, my little brother’s girlfriend praised Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for being so amazing. Regarding my little brother’s work ethic, she had told him the same thing many times, but he still hadn’t changed. The thing he feared the most, though, was that his girlfriend might ignore him! And Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had known all of this!

“I am grateful for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s earnest instruction and constant exhortations. Now I would like to repent deeply for my wrongdoings. One evening while I was still a believer participating in the Chod Pujas, I was on my way home from work when I suddenly had a desire to drink hot soup. This evil thought entered my mind and caused me to drive over to a meat noodle shop, where I asked the proprietor to cook a bowl of noodle soup with no meat. At the time I was too ignorant to know that I should repent for this. On my way home from there, in my self-righteousness I came up with the excuse that the Sixth Patriarch Huineng had eaten “only vegetables in vegetable-with-meat dishes” as well. As a result, during the following Chod Puja, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche admonished attendees from the Dharma throne: ‘Whenever any of you come imploring to participate in the pujas, I always ask you whether or not you can eat vegetarian. I only allow you to participate if you answer that you can. Some of you might want to bring up the fact that the Sixth Patriarch Huineng had eaten “only vegetables in vegetable-with-meat dishes” as well! The Sixth Patriarch Huineng attained Emptiness, but let me ask you this: Have you?’ Here and now, I would like to repent for not having kept my promise. I am extremely grateful for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s great awe-inspiring power and all-knowing, compassionate admonishments. The guru was very strict with me even back then, when I was still just a believer. As Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche once said, sentient beings truly are burdened with heavy karma. If the guru were to neglect uttering a single word or reminder, then immediately they stray away from the right path.

“In November of 2011, I approached His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to implore to take refuge. The guru asked, ‘I am very fierce, so why would you want to take refuge in me?’ In my ignorance I answered, ‘I want to help sentient beings.’ Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche berated, ‘You want to help sentient beings, yet you have not even solved your own problems. This shows that you are arrogant. I will not grant your wish to take refuge at this time.’ I repented deeply for having been so disrespectful, arrogant, and self-righteous back then. At the same time, I am profoundly grateful for every admonishment uttered by His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, for they have all contained boundless compassion and wisdom. After Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s admonishment, I reflected deeply upon my ignorance until I had gained a realization of the guru’s compassionate teachings. I then repented for my wrong attitude. I am also thankful that later on, while listening to the Dharma CD on Repentance, I heard Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche say, ‘While practicing Buddhism, you must have a sense of renunciation so that you can become liberated from life and death. Until you are able to do this, you should not make such grand vows to liberate sentient beings; otherwise, when the time comes, you will neither be able to go to the Pure Land nor return to Earth.’ I am grateful to His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for always compassionately correcting the mistaken views of sentient beings, for always roping us back into line whenever our thoughts begin to stray, for always kindly guiding sentient beings to practice Buddhism step by step in the proper sequential order, and for always clearing away hindrances for sentient beings so that they can be prepared at the moment of their death. I am profoundly grateful to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s infinite compassion in not forsaking sentient beings.

“I would like to thank His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for having allowed me to take refuge on June 2nd, 2013. I feel deeply ashamed of how badly I have behaved, and Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche knows all about it: My selfishness and self-righteousness; my extremely heavy karmic hindrances that caused my faith to waver back and forth; my intermittent lack of respectfulness; my constant ignorance while thinking about things, as well as my extreme defensiveness; and my evil thoughts that have arisen alongside jealousy and the Five Poisons of greed, hatred, ignorance, arrogance, and doubt, as well as their resulting evil karma. Although I have not sought audience with Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for reasons to do with any physical ailment, I am in fact afflicted with severe psychological problems. Nevertheless, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has compassionately embraced me. Even the guru’s seemingly stern admonishments have been full of endless compassion and mercy; he is not willing to see sentient beings to fall into the Three Evil Realms or taste the bitter fruit born of having committed wrongdoings. In his infinite compassion, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche is constantly giving sentient beings opportunities. If I were to take a long hard look at myself, I would have to wonder what right I had to take refuge in His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. However, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, who is no different from the Buddha, is forever full of infinite compassion in not forsaking sentient beings. The guru is always willing to bestow opportunities upon any sentient beings with the slightest bit of respect and intention to practice Buddhism so that we can practice the Dharma, amend our ways, and eventually help other sentient beings to become liberated from life and death. Praise be unto His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, for this truly is the most supreme sort of benevolence!

“Before taking refuge in His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, I really was like a tiny boat bobbing up and down at the whim of the Five Turbidities, carried along by my karma through wave after wave of evil and virtuous conditions. I never had a clear understanding of the meaning and purpose of life; I chased various goals which I did not even recognize myself. Still, I often felt endless fear in the face of my own death and that of my friends and relatives. I am grateful to Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, who is no different from the Buddha and who, with the compassion and wisdom of the Buddha, Great Lord of Healing, guided me until I understood the essence of life and realized that it is merely a phase. Everything, both good and bad, is temporary; the important thing is to immerse myself in my practice and establish a steadfast and strong faith in the guru. By learning the Dharma from Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, I eventually will be able to leave the great cycle of reincarnation and become liberated from life and death.

“I am grateful to His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Not long after I took refuge, the effects of heavy karmic retribution on my mother were lessened as a result of the guru’s blessings and protection. On the evening of July 7th, after participating in a puja, I was driving back to Tainan. My mother took a ride on her scooter with her little pet dog, and a little while later called to tell me that she had gotten into an accident at an intersection by the park not far from home. I hurried to the scene, and the first things I saw were two scooters piled on top of one another; then I noticed that someone had helped my mother up and was supporting her by the side of the street, waiting for the ambulance to arrive so that she could be taken to get checked out. Because it looked like my mother had not sustained any serious injuries, I went on home to prostrate myself before my Dharma photos of His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and Protector Achi, and to implore the guru to bestow blessings upon the person my mother had crashed into, who appeared to be a youth and whose injuries were rather serious. Then I got my health insurance card and some traditional Chinese ointment and hurried over to the hospital. A little while later, the youth called to apologize. After being examined, it turned out that my mother only had a few scrapes and bruises, plus a cut that only needed one or two stitches.

“Afterward, we looked at some photos taken by my little brother at the scene of the accident, and were truly amazed: The one scooter had struck the other squarely in the middle, and the entire front end of the youth’s scooter had been totally destroyed. Our mom’s vehicle had been bent askew, yet in addition to the two drivers, even the dog had survived safe and sound. Our mom said that she had absolutely no memory of the moment of the crash; all she knew was that as soon as she had recovered consciousness, she was sitting securely atop the tipped-over scooter as if someone had been holding her in place. Upon hearing this, I immediately felt grateful to His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, and that Saturday I headed north to thank the guru. While seeking audience, I reported to His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, ‘Thank you for bestowing blessings upon my mom; she had an accident on Sunday, but only suffered minor injuries. We are very grateful to you.’ After meditating awhile, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche replied, ‘No problem.’ It was exactly as the guru once said: ‘Each of your lives has been saved by me.’ These words are absolutely correct. I am grateful to His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for bestowing upon us disciples a new chance of our physical bodies and wisdom life, as well as for saving the lives of our family members. The owner of the motorcycle shop had originally said that my mother’s scooter could not be repaired, and that it would cost more than NT$60,000 or so to buy a new one. Not long after, however, he was able to repair it, and it only cost her NT$5,000. My family and I are extremely grateful to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

“I thank the guru for blessing my mother. Within a week her injuries had practically healed. This allowed me, despite my unworthiness, to participate in a puja group for the first time, which went on July 16th to Ladakh, India to take part in the Thousand-Armed and Thousand-Eyed Avalokiteshvara Puja. I still remember how brightly the sun shined down on that first day of the puja, held outdoors; at that high altitude its rays were so intense that I felt as if I would melt. Thanks the protection of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s good fortune, the Tibetans on the scene agreed to let us use the tent, shielding us from the heat. Early on the morning of the second day, a Dharma brother passed on a message from Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche: ‘For Tibetans, the sun represents the guru’s blessings, as does the rain. Because of this view that everything occurring is a blessing from the guru, they are able to patiently endure any situation they find themselves in. This is unlike the Glorious Jewel disciples, who act like spoiled nobility. Still, I cannot bear to see my disciples shrivel under the heat of the sun, so I have specially bestowed blessings so that the weather will cool off today.’ Sure enough, that same day, at the same place,  auspicious clouds filled the sky overhead, and although it continued to be a clear day outdoors, those of us participating in the puja felt as cool and comfortable as if we were sitting in an air-conditioned room.

“By the third day of the puja, it had begun to rain. As always, the Tibetans sat out quietly in the open air upon soaked mats. We felt grateful for Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s abundant good fortune that had allowed us to sit under a roof while participating in the puja. Meanwhile, His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang and our guru, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche were sitting facing outdoors, and the Dharma was performed from the Dharma throne, regardless of the risk of getting wet from the rain being blown in sideways from under the eaves. When the puja was halfway finished, a male Dharma brother came running in to ask if anyone had a heat pad. Later, after learning that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche needed one for the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang because he was concerned that the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang might be cold, I felt very ashamed and repented deeply for having thought only of myself despite having received so much protection from the guru’s abundant good fortune. I had thought about nothing but my own comfort, without sparing a single thought for the fact that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche might feel cold, too. The guru had given of his own venerable life, precious energy, merits from practice, and good fortune to sentient beings, including those with very severe karmic hindrances. However, I had never had any consideration for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. I truly felt repentant to the extreme.

“Thinking back, I feel great shame and repentance for how I have acted toward the guru. In this lifetime I have had the good fortune to take refuge in Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, who is no different from the Buddha, and the guru has given me so much. I am grateful to His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for bestowing auspicious teachings upon me, and for the great integrity the guru has demonstrated. I pray that with the help of His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s blessings, I will be able to commit the guru’s teachings to heart, and with them wash my inner mind clean of the contamination of the Five Poisons. In addition, I hope to be able to genuinely appreciate the guru’s teachings and put them to practice. I am grateful to His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for bestowing upon me this opportunity to share my story. I would also like to thank Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for his blessings, which have allowed such a foolish person as myself to come here and praise the guru. Finally, I pray that His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche will have good health and keep turning the Dharma wheel so that the Dharma will be spread far and wide, benefiting all sentient beings, and that the Drikung Kagyu Lineage will flourish forever.”

Written with respect by Disciple Chen Peiwen, Group 5, on September 21st, 2014

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Updated on October 16, 2015