Upasaka Mr. Bai Yung-fa, aged seventy-three this year, came from Northeast China and is usually untalkative. Everyone calls him Elder Bai.
After coming to the Sagely City of Ten Thousand Buddhas three years ago, due to his abundant knowledge of farming, Elder Bai has become the best technical advisor on farming in the City.
From his youth he learned how to plow and plant the fields and husk the grain, and the furrows he plowed were deep and straight. With one heave-ho he could shoulder 200 jin of rice. Physically, Elder Bai has always been strong. In the City, he is always trimming trees and planting vegetables. In the Jyun Kang Canteen, he would often begin early in the morning, making dough, rolling it, and then chopping the filling and wrapping dumplings.
In his old age, Elder Bai has discovered that he has a liver ailment. While he was sick his daughter recited the Earth Store Sutra for him and told him stories about the merits of refraining from killing. After hearing these stories, Elder Bai sighed and said, "Had I known about how heavy the retribution for killing is, I would not have done any killing." Because in his youth he was strong, he could kill with one blow. Every time during New Year's, the neighbors would ask him to help kill pigs. From the time he was in his twenties until he was seventy he has killed over two hundred pigs. This is the biggest sorrow in Elder Bai's life.
In his remote hometown, Elder Bai had no opportunity to hear the Buddhadharma. But since coming to the Sagely City and receiving the daily influence of the Buddhadharma, Elder Bai has gained a new lease on life.
(Editors' Note: Elder Bai passed away on January 29, at 12:06 p.m. In a leaving -home ceremony held on February 1, his head was shaved and he was given the Dharma name of Gwo Yung, "Eternal Fruition.")