...the year we first started our precepts transmission, a
bat came to listen to the Dharma. It came in by itself and
after listening it flew off. During the entire Dharma
session, it listened attentively and after listening it flew
away. At the same time, there was a cat, which wasn't a cat
at all; it was in fact a person who had wanted to listen to
the sutras but had not been permitted to enter before.
You may not know about this. There is a toad here but it
is not really a toad. Do not think it is just a toad; he has
purposefully transformed into a toad to come, to let us know
that he is also here. Last night, Guo-yu heard me talking
about the toad and he stood up to catch it. I told him not
to bother it. And it stopped croaking after a while. Hu
Guo-xiang is very intelligent and she understood the
situation. She thought it was strange and was the one who
told me. Therefore, when we see animals in the Buddha Hall
during the sutra lecture, we should not bother them.
Once when I was lecturing at Western Bliss Gardens, a
duck came to listen to a sutra lecture. It went behind my
bowing cushion and started to bow. As it bowed, it quacked.
Guo Hui, the short one who came yesterday, tried to chase it
out with a round fan. After she returned, the duck came back
and continued quacking and bowing. She tried to chase it out
three or four times, yet it returned again and again.
Finally, I told her not to chase it away and to leave it
alone to listen to the sutra. This duck stayed and listened
for the entire sutra session. When everybody went out to
take photos, this duck followed along. As it couldn't get up
onto the platform where all the people were standing, it was
left squatting at the bottom and was not captured in the
photographs. This incident happened while I was still at
Western Bliss Gardens in Hong Kong.
Regardless of the Dharma assembly or the types of beings
who come in, do not chase them out. Even if it is an insect,
a housefly or a moth, they are here to listen to the Dharma.
Have you all forgotten that Guo Hang found a little worm in
my teacup in Gold Mountain Monastery Lecture Hall? In this
teacup, there was a little worm. Do you all still remember?
That little worm also came to listen to the Dharma. That
little worm and that toad belong to the dragon species .