The Venerable Lal ho

Translated by the Sino—
American Buddhist Asso­ciation Buddhist Text Translation Society.

Edited by Upisaka Lo Kuo Chan.

First Session, Sixth Talk, delivered on
the 20th day of the 10th month in the
Chinese year Jen Wu

     Each of you came to Kao Mm Monastery longing to follow the Dharma Way. We are reputed to have this Way for you to follow. All of you are like this. The words “longing to follow the Dharma Way” are good to hear, but with regard to actual practice, why desire the Way? Many of you came from far away, thousands of miles longing for the Kao Mm Dharma. Isn’t this looking outside for the Way? Isn’t such a wish nothing more than an external indulgence which leads you astray?

     Clearly Kao Mm is not the only place the Way exists. The Way cannot be separated into north,, south, east, west, nor can it be described as yours or mine. Straight through to reality is it. But even this one sentence is too much. Originally there is no debt or excess. It’s already complete, here and now.

     We are to be pitied. Measureless aeons ago we were the same as the Buddhas of the ten directions. But not only the same, we went beyond the place of the Buddhas of the ten directions until suddenly we obtained illu­sory transformation shells of form. Dissatisfied with them, we soon changed into other forms, and then into others, and so on until today. Each change left a scar which covered over our original face. Now the face is firmly imprisoned, and the breath is unable to move.

     Notwithstanding, there is nothing lacking in any of us. The same applies to all the Buddhas of the ten directions, to all the Bodhisattvas, Patriarchs, to all the mountains and rivers, to the whole of the great earth, t the insects2 the grass and trees, the forests, to the vast immeasurable emptiness of space and beyond, and from one empty space to measureless numberless empty spaces. Neither you nor I are inadequate in the least. It is a pity that you can not make it. If you could, then wouldn’t you be different people altogether? But you aren’t that kind.

     We are, however, to be congratulated. Today we are encased in human shells. How can we take advantage of this and find a way to enlightenment? The realization of this goal depends upon unquestioning faith in the fact that this impermanent physical form will soon be wasted and decomposed, and that at that time there will be so many paths that we will not know which to follow. We may not be able to secure rebirth in human form again. The paths which will confront us at death are unknown to us now, and therefore it is of the utmost importance to have the deepest faith in our original face so that we can understand it.

     And so, it is important for us to be enlightened, here and now. We cannot do this without a deep and dir­ect awareness of ourselves. When we are able to believe in ourselves we can, in addition, have faith in the method Who is it who recites the Buddha?” To inquire, “Who recites the Buddha?” is to understand ourselves. However, merely to recite “Who recites the Buddha?” does not have these good qualities. You yourself should investigate and realize the truth of the words, “Who recites the Buddha?”

     As I direct you to make purposeful use of this method you might ask, “Does this sentence have any use? Who recites the Buddha? The one who recites the Buddha is me. Can someone else recite Buddha for me?” This not only happens to you beginners in Ch’an meditation; it happened to us, too.

     I have seen the words, “Who recites the Buddha?” posted in lots of places. After seeing it posted it seemed to me that this study is different from all worldly studies which can be quickly understood. Inquiry into Who recites the Buddha?” can not be easily understood. 2se this to investigate...Is the one who recites the Buddha just me? Then think about it again. Could I be wrong! Is it me? How could it be me? Again, if you are certain that you are reciting Buddha, I’ll now alter the wording of the poster to read, “The one who recites the Buddha is me.” Is this in order? If it is not, then you are not the one who is reciting. To say this again, if the one who recited the Buddha is not me, is it the Buddha? No. Everything that exists is also not it. It’s just that you consider and discriminate in such a way for a time , but then turn your head around and know that you are wrong.

     Why direct you to use effort in discriminating thinking? So you can know that you don’t know who re­cites the Buddha. It’s just in the not knowing, in the not understanding that you should seek the ultimate. It is just this feeling of doubt.. .when in this doubting state you must apply yourselves ceaselessly. Do so until your head turns around again and at that time you will penetrate and understand yourself.

     Now meditate!


   Mrs. Ruth Dorney   $100.00
   Upasaka Kuo Ti       60.00
   Upasaka Kuo Kuang    35.00
   Upasaka Kuo Chan     26.00
   Upasaka Kuo Jen      20.00
   Upasaka Kuo Ch’ien   15.00
   Upasaka Kuo Pao     10.00
   Upasaka Kuo Li and Up~sik~Kuo Shan
   Mr. and Mrs. J.D. Babcock 20.00
   Bill Baur            20.00


Letters to the Ed stow

 Indeed it does please me to continue supporting Vajra Bodhi Sea. It is obvious to me that true Dhamma is being practiced at Gold Mountain Monastery for its clear sweet tone is unmistakable.

The journal itself is excellent, with real flesh and bones, and may I compliment the disciplined staff who bring it out on time. More tangible evidence of the way Buddhism is practiced in your monastery.

Yours in the Dhamma
Eleanor D. Ross
Carmel, Calif.




Born the second eldest of four sons of a military officer, Upasaka Kuo Hu Kiarer spent his early years stationed in England, Germany, and the United States.

During his high school years he became aware that reality was not a function of knowledge and began to search in other areas, chiefly non—verbal such as music, for the true experience of the reality state. Although enrolled at Michigan State University for two quarters, he spent most of his time delving into the possibilities of psychedelics and the cultural matrix of which they were a part. His restless nature sent him on the road, where, for over a year he traveled throughout the country, with nothing but the clothes on his back, moving both vertically and hori­zontally through the spectrum of the social fabric. He finally settled in San Francisco in late 1967 where he submerged in the frenzied insanity of the Haight.

In the Spring of 1968, his older brother, Dharma Master Deng Ching, who had been studying with Professor Conze at the University of Washington, came from Seattle to San Francisco to take r9fuge with Master Hsuan Hua and to attend the rigorous SURANGAMA SUTRA LECTURE AND CULTIVATION SESSION. Dharma Master Heng Ching informed his brother of the Wonderful Dharma, but it was not until the following winter that Kuo Hu met the Master for the first time. “The first time I saw the Master I vas completely unable to see him. All I saw was a brilliantly glowing white light, like a pure white sun.”

He continued on in the life he was leading and spent some time in Southern and Central Mexico, but his thoughts constantly returned to the Buddhist Lecture Hall. Finally, deciding he had had enough, that in fact his road to enlightenment had turned to a dead, dark end, be returned to San Francisco. A month later he moved into the Buddhist Lecture Hall to attend the SIXTH PATRIARCH’S SUTRA LECTURE AND CULTIVATION SESSION. After tasting the subtle flavor of Dharma he took refuge with the Triple Jewel on September 6, 1969, and received the Dharma name Kuo Hu.

After the end of the session he remained at the Buddhist Lecture Hall and daily meditated and recited the Great Compassionate Mantra, the HEART SUTRA, and the name of the Bodhisattva Kuan Shih Yin   He had several dreams involving the Bodhisattva Kuan Shih Yin, but upon awakening was unable to remember them clearly. During the Seven Day Recollection of the Buddha Session of December 1969 he became very ill. While lying in bed he envisioned his body uniting with the Thousand-Handed, Thousand-Eyed body of Kuan Shih Yin Bodhisattva. Also, as if in a dream, he saw himself as a Bhiksuni swimming in the Ganges River during the time of Sakyamuni Buddha. “I was simultaneously lying in bed hearing the lecture in the main hall and swimming in the Ganges. Each one aware of the other, as if old friends who hadn’t seen each other in a long time.”

Kuo Hu is employed as a shipping clerk, and yet never misses lectures and services given at Gold Mountain Temple. He works hard to help maintain the Temple, both physically and financially. He studies classical and spoken Chinese with great industry and is able to recite long passages of the LUI’US SUTRA from memory. Wishing to help all living beings to benefit from the Great Compassion Dharma of Kuan Yin Bodhisattva, he has established himself solidly on the Buddha path in his own cultivation, and in addition to daily meditation and recitation, eats only one meal a day and never lies down.


Vajra Bodhi Sea, in order to make the good Dharma widely known, will publish the biographies of eminent Sangha members and lay Buddhists around the world. The editors welcome contributions, which are not restricted to biographies alone. Any articles, translations, poems, and stories of interest to Buddhist readers will be gladly received and considered for publication.


When the unemployed read Vajra Bodhi Sea, they suddenly obtain jobs.

When the employed read Vajra Bodhi Sea, they receive sought after promotions.

When employers read Vajra Bodhi Sea, their employees all manifest great respect.

If everyone read Vajra Bodhi Sea, aaahhhhh how wonderful.


Increase Your Wisdom and
Concentration Power

The Sino-American Buddhist Association, The Buddhist Lecture Hall, and Vajra Bodhi Sea together will sponsor ~-‘ree separate four—week Lecture and Cultivation Sessions to be held during the summer of 1971. The main lecture series in each Session will cover sections of AVATAMSAKA SUTRA. Additional lectures on THE WONDERFUL DHARMA LOTUS FLOWER SUTRA, THE SURANGAMA SUTRA, ORIGINAL VOWS OF EARTH TREASURY KING BODHISATTVA SUTRA, and other important Buddhist texts will also been. Complimenting the sutra study, seven hours of meditation will be scheduled each day, in addition to chanting of sutras and mantras. The dates for theree Sessions are as follows:

First Session: June 13 —— July 11, 1971.
Second Session: July 18 —— August 15, 1971.
Third Session: August 22—— September 19, 1971.

There is no better way to introduce yourself to ~1hism than attending one or more of these Sessions. The combination of sutra study, meditation, and recitation allows for a good understanding of both the principles and practices of the Buddhadharma. You may attend one, two or all three of these Sessions. A graduation at which diplomas for all three Sessions will out, will take place on September 19th.


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July 24 Wei T’ou Bodhisattva’s Birthday.
August 9 Anniversary of Avalokitesvara
         Bodhisattva’s Accomplishment of the Way.
September 2  Got Great Strength Bodhisattva’s Birthday.
September 4  Ullambana Festival; Buddha’s Happy Day.
September 13 Nagarjuna Bodhisattva’s Birthday.
September 19 Earth Treasury Bodhisattva s Birthday.


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