The Venerable Master Hua has said, "The myriad phenomena basically come from the Buddha nature. They arise and cease to be, undergoing ceaseless transformations. If there were no Buddha nature, everything would be extinguished. Only the Buddha nature exists eternally without ever being extinguished. Thus, from the Buddha nature, the ten Dharma realms come into being....People come into existence from the Buddha nature, and animals are human beings who have fallen."
Two summers ago, we had an infestation of fruitflies in our kitchen. I don't know where they came from. They were there in the millions; they were everywhere. We became very careful about not leaving any fruit out and cleaning up everything right away. but they still persisted. And they really were a pain because there were so many of them everywhere and we didn't know what to do. So I believe it was me who finally said, "Well, we gotta get a fly swatter." It wasn't a great joy.
Ocean, our son, then 16, said, "No way! Let me try something first." So what he did was he wrote a letter to the fruitflies:
"You seem to have taken residence in our house. Evidently, you're finding something you like to eat. This is our house; we pay rent here and you don't! Furthermore, there's lots of food outside! We have a compost pile that is full of delights for you that we can't eat that you can! And the food here, we can eat, and you evidently can also, but it's not fair that you should when there is other food that you can eat." And so forth.
"Furthermore," he said, "we're not gonna put up with it. So I wish you and all your generations to come all the juiciest cow dung patties, all the most wonderful compost piles in the world and the blessing upon your ancestors. But, will you please leave!"
He was greatly elated by this and somewhat swell-headed. A few weeks later, when some wasps showed up, he tried the same thing, and it didn't work. He didn't seem to have the knack with wasps. But then some time later--we have cats and we feed them in the garage--a raccoon and a possum were in the cat-feeding area and scaring the cats, and he put up the notes to them! The one to the raccoons was great. Right where the raccoons would enter the garage, a sign said "No Raccoons Allowed! Extremely Severe Repercussion!" They stopped showing up and eating the cat's food. It's true. Amazing to me.