Before I learned Buddhism, I felt that being kind and not hurting other people was enough. Therefore, I often told lies, killed living beings, ate meat, and gambled. I committed much evil and often had dreams of being killed or falling into a bottomless abyss. Still I clung to my confusion and refused to awaken. When the Venerable Master Hua came to Taiwan to propagate the Dharma in October 1988, my mother wanted me to meet the Venerable Master and take refuge with him. I told her I would consider it, but did not really intend to go. Shortly thereafter, I went to my mother's home to get medicine for a stomach ache, and she mentioned the idea again. Since my stomach had stopped hurting, I ignored the matter. But then my stomach started hurting again, so I promised to go see the Venerable Master. The stomach ailment then ceased without the help of medication.
When the Venerable Master lectured at the Chung-shan Hall in Taipei in November, he said that anyone who took refuge with him had to become a Buddha before he himself did; if any disciple had not attained Buddhahood, he himself would not either. I was so moved by the Venerable Master's compassion that I took refuge with him and became a full-time vegetarian. I studied the Buddhadharma by reading the Master's instructional talks and simple explanations of sutras. After I gained an elementary understanding of the Buddhadharma, I realized that I had created much bad karma.
Soon, I noticed that I had lost weight and no longer suffered the old ailments of an irregular heartbeat, piercing chest pains, breathing difficulties, and asthma attacks during sleep. My blood cholesterol went down to normal, and my blood went from being thick black to bright crimson in color. Had I not encountered the Buddhadharma, I may not have lived too long, and who knows what realm I would have descended to. Grateful to the Master for giving me a new lease on life, I often attended Dharma sessions at Dharma Realm Buddhist Book Distribution Society and served as a volunteer when Dharma delegations came to Taiwan, enduring any hardships that arose. Looking back on my ten years of learning Buddhism, I feel that I have not been diligent and have not abided by the Venerable Master's teachings. From now on, I shall be more diligent in studying the Buddhadharma, so that I can repay the kindness of the Triple Jewel.