759: Help from Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche before Even Meeting Him

I am grateful to His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for bestowing me the opportunity to share my story of taking refuge. I am from Wenzhou in Zhejiang Province, and I took refuge under the guru on July 26th of 2015. I would like to share how and why I came all the way from Mainland China to Taiwan to seek an audience with Rinpoche, and learn the Dharma from him.

The way things began was really quite auspicious. Before I met Rinpoche, I had already been old friends with one of the Dharma brothers from group three; often he would share stories and experiences about how Rinpoche had helped him as well as other Dharma brothers. Sometimes I would read the content on the website of the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center, and ask my friend some questions, but I didn’t really have a very deep concept of Buddhism. Once I came to Taiwan with a tour group from China, but could not come to seek an audience with Rinpoche because of the group schedule, so all I could do was read about Rinpoche’s teachings and listen to others share their stories. (At the time it was not easy for Mainland Chinese people to visit Taiwan outside of organized groups). Then one day last year, at dawn, I dreamed of a sudden flash of light, and then an amiable elder touched my head and said, “Go ahead with courage.”

When I woke, I called my friend who was a Dharma brother, at the time, I couldn’t even remember Rinpoche’s Dharma title. I told my friend “I had a dream about your guru!” My friend started crying, and asked me what happened in the dream. I said that an elder touched my head benevolently, and told me to “go forward with courage.” The reason why I was told to go forward with courage, I believe, was because I had a stye in my eye, and I hesitated to have it operated on. The doctor told me that the operation would involve an anesthetic injection with a very large needle on the inside of my eyelid. Out of fright, I continued to postpone the procedure. My doctor friend told me I could put off the operation, as long as my eye was not severely swollen, and the circumstances acceptable. However, no one knows when there could be pathological changes, because the virus still exists over time.

When I woke from the dream of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, my eye was already swollen. At the hospital, the doctor said that I must have an operation. My friend, the Dharma brother, said to me “go ahead, visualize Rinpoche blessing you.” That day in the operating room, I really saw Rinpoche touch my head and bless me. Normally, this type of procedure takes 40 minutes to an hour, but my friends waiting outside thought it odd to see me come out after less than 20 minutes, as if I had only gone in to get anesthetized. My friend even asked, “Did you do it?” Even then I was dumbfounded, not even sure whether the procedure was successful because I felt no pain in the process. The doctor made me sit in the waiting room in case of any kind of bleeding or emergency. So I sat for about half an hour until the doctors came to open up my bandages, and started discussing amongst themselves, saying, what an odd patient, no blood at all. The doctor even turned my eyelid inside out to inspect the scar, but she said, “What an odd case, no blood and no scar at all.” and so I was discharged without any ointment or medication.

My friend found the situation rather unusual because my eyes were as swollen as a dragon’s eye fruit in the beginning, but now it has completely recovered. And because the procedure would have taken 40 minutes, he was going to go get a snack, but I came out of the operating room fully recovered before he could go downstairs. Only after reading more from the Buddhist Center’s website, and hearing from other Dharma brothers did I realize that His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had blessed me. I had never gone to Taiwan to seek an audience with Rinpoche, nor have I ever made an offering, yet Rinpoche could still bless me and help me from so far away. I felt that I was very lucky, and the situation was truly auspicious. So far away, even without seeing Rinpoche, I had already received his help.

Yang Lingyu went for an operation to remove a stye in her eye.

Since that time, I hoped I could come seek an audience with the elder and guru whom I respected the most but unfortunately, I could not go for a long time because my hometown had not been granted free travel to Taiwan. I tried to register for the puja trips to Nepal and Japan, but could not go because I was not Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s disciple yet. Each time I felt joy when I was asked if I wanted to register, but felt sad after learning that non-disciples could not go. Often, I told my friend that I must come seek an audience with Rinpoche and become his disciple. I even said that my biggest hope this year was to become a varjra Dharma brother, and my friend always said, “It will happen! It will happen!”

Suddenly, something odd happened: My hometown, neither a provincial capital nor a municipality, was granted permission for individual travel to Taiwan. I started preparing immediately for the Taiwan Entry Permit application because there are two parts to the procedure, one on the Mainland end, and one from Taiwan. The time between receiving the permit and getting on the flight was less than 24 hours, I was so happy! My good friend and Dharma brother was worried that I would be confused on my first trip, therefore arranged to fly out overnight on the same day with me. He took the closest flight out of Shanghai as I left from Wenzhou.

I continued to share my story, even in Taiwan when I met other Dharma brothers. Each time I told the story, I would feel so moved and tear up, and feel gratitude for our guru. I kept wondering why I would have such good fortune. Then I remembered one small detail: One day last year when my friend, a fellow Dharma brother showed me the picture of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche where he arranged a mandala in his room. I, not knowing the rituals, not even the three prostrations, simply bowed to Rinpoche’s photo with joy. All I did was bow down in front of Rinpoche’s photo, yet so far away, with mountains and rivers between us, he still blessed and helped me!

Even though it was a minor operation, words could not express my feelings. Many things are inexplicable through science. Although I have only heard other Dharma brothers share Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s compassionate acts, I know that Rinpoche is amazing, a great practitioner who cultivates diligently according to the Dharma and has attained his achievements.

The four Mainland disciples took a group photo from right to left: Yang Lingyu, Cheng Beibei, Zheng Xi, Zhou Xiaowei.

In my hometown there are three of us disciples; we gather each week and share what we have read from the website, including Rinpoche’s teachings and traces of liberation. We do so with joy and feelings of auspiciousness. Yesterday when I arrived in Taipei, the group leader of group one invited me to their group dinner, at first I did not know what a group dinner was, but later I found out it is a gathering of Dharma brothers to share their experiences with Rinpoche. So, I joined and listened.

It may be hard for Dharma brothers in Taipei to imagine our situation in my hometown. One Taiwanese Dharma brother comes to Mainland frequently for business, so he brings packages of Pu’er tea and incense for us each time. When these packages arrive, I always feel such joy for many days, and feel that I’m very lucky. Now that there is free travel from my hometown, thanks to Rinpoche’s blessings, none of my travel applications had been denied, I could even attend some of the grand pujas. I am truly grateful, each time I long to come back to Taiwan.

I will also share how I got granted taking refuge on June 5th from His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. As a matter of fact, no one knew there was going to be a refuge-taking puja. Because it was the summer holidays, normally one has to wait at least two months to get the entry permit for Taiwan, so I started preparing in mid-June. On July 20th, I told a friend who works for the immigration bureau that I would like to go to Taiwan in late July, but she said that it would be impossible because July and August is the busy summer vacation season, and that it could be September by the time I get the permit, or even August 20th at the earliest. I didn’t know why, but I told her that I must go in late July, and asked if there was any other way. She then said there was a way to expedite the process, but it would cost me 200 RMB each day. I said it would be fine, for some reason I had the thought that I must arrive on July 25th. She then told me that July 25th would be impossible, and August 25th was more like it.

I bought my ticket in early July to fly on July 24th for Taipei, and booked a hotel room, but I told the travel agent that I did not have a permit for Taiwan yet, so I may not be able to go. The agent asked me why I would do such a thing. I told her, I just had to go. I called my friend at the immigration bureau and told her that I would go to the airport with my luggage on July 24th, and asked if she could email me the digital copy if she received my permit, and if not, I would just go home with my luggage. My friend told me not to go to the airport at all because it would be impossible to receive the permit at the desired time. I asked how soon would the expedited permit arrive, and was told that at the most one could expedite the permit for ten days, which would cost 2,000 RMB (10,000 NTD), but the permit would only arrive on August 10th.

My bags were packed, and on July 23rd, I received a file from my friend, with a note saying that it was impossible that the permit could arrive on this date. I was doubtful as well; only until I saw my name on the permit did I really believe. I did not know that there would be a refuge-taking puja, but when I found out, my joy was beyond words. The reason I had to be in Taiwan on July 25th was because I knew there would be a trip later on to Tibet with Rinpoche, and I wanted to come ask him if I could go even though I was not his disciple yet. H.E. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche is truly compassionate, and knew that I had been praying in front of the altar everyday, so even before I received my travel permit, I was notified that I could go on the trip to Tibet with Rinpoche. At that time, I couldn’t find words to express myself, the three of us, (myself and two other Dharma brothers from my hometown) hugged one another with joy, they told me that it is rare to be granted such a wish, it is Rinpoche who has given me the good fortune to go to Tibet with him for an auspicious puja.

I will not speak too much about the trip to Tibet because many others have shared their stories on the Buddhist Center’s website, but I want to mention a few things. In Mainland we know how Tibetans have a traditional belief that if one sees a great Buddhist practitioner in this lifetime, they would not fall into the Three Evil Realms in the 7 following lifetimes. Those who went to Tibet remember, on the day we went to the Drikung Thil Monastery, we saw many Tibetans also on their way to the Monastery. We departed for the Monastery at 6 in the morning, but when we arrived, some local Tibetans already arrived on foot with their children. I wondered when the locals started walking in the morning since it took us more than four hours to get to the Monastery by bus. However, some of us even found the journey quite tiring. I didn’t say anything to the other Dharma brothers, but to the Dharma brothers from my hometown who complained, I would say in our dialect, what’s so tiring about riding on a bus? Some other Dharma brothers also said, all we had to do was buy a plane ticket and follow the great practitioner, H.E. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. But I thought: I didn’t even buy the ticket myself; all I had to do was call and register. On the contrary, many Tibetans actually went up to the Monastery, one prostration at each step.

H.E. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche is truly compassionate. While it was already a great fortune for Tibetans to be in the presence of a master practitioner, I was deeply moved when Rinpoche still received, blessed and helped the Tibetans there. I thought that these must be very fortunate Tibetans. In Mainland China, even people of Han origins go to Tibet knowing that one must be very fortunate to meet a master practitioner. It is particularly evident in the Tibetan culture that the tradition of cherishing the encounters with a great practitioner has been passed down for generations. As disciples, we had the chance to follow H.E. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche; the guru even shared a meal with us, bestowing us the opportunity to be close to him.

To think of it, I was miles away in Wenzhou, where I merely bowed to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s photo, yet he still blessed and helped me. My situation was not something explicable through modern medicine. Back then, I waited for the operation nervously because I knew that both children and adults who suffered from the same eye condition felt so much pain that some patients could not speak or even fainted as a result. Thanks to my friend and Dharma brother who sent me a message on the day of the operation, reminding me that it was all my karmic debt, and the earlier I could repay it the better. He also told me not to be afraid, and that I must visualize Rinpoche blessing and helping me. To prevent me from moving from the pain in the operating room that day, I was wrapped up in a large blanket like the way they wrap up psychiatric patients to appease them. The nurse told me not to move because it would be very painful, and there was even someone to hold me down. However, during the whole operation, I never knew if it was over because I felt no pain. In addition, there was a flash of light; I was touched on my head and then I felt no pain. When I returned for a checkup, the doctor said that I did not need to come back again, and that I need not take the ointment because she couldn’t even find the wound under my lid. Many things were unexplainable, but when I did not do anything, Rinpoche already blessed me. I didn’t even know what a prostration was, let alone make an offering, so I give my sincerest thanks to Rinpoche.

Yang Lingyu is grateful to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for his omnipresent compassion and blessings.

I believe that Rinpoche will grant my wishes, as long as I pray sincerely. I sought an audience with him three times: The first time I asked to take refuge, and he told me to go and register; the second time I asked to go to Tibet with him. The third time was yesterday, when despite the long hours of attending to believers, Rinpoche not only granted me a Dharma name, sutras, recordings of his past teachings, he even gave me guidance for my work. I kept thinking, had I taken refuge under Rinpoche earlier in life, my new life would have started earlier. Nonetheless, I have at last been granted my wishes. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has given me the affinity and good fortune to learn the Dharma, and I believe this is truly rare. It is extraordinary to meet such a guru in the Age of Degenerate Dharma, we must cherish the fortune we have accumulated and follow Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s footsteps in order to truly relieve ourselves from the cycles of reincarnation.

I am very grateful to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and the Dharma brothers who helped me for the opportunity to share my experiences and feelings today. Lastly, I pray that that His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche would maintain good health, keep turning the Dharma wheel, and have eternal presence in this world, so that more sentient beings may benefit.

Respectfully written by Yang Lingyu, Group 5, on September 27th, 2015
Updated on April 23rd, 2017

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Updated on February 5, 2018