My name is Zhan Qiong-Hua. I was born in Malaysia, where my parents had emigrated to from Mainland China. In 1979, I worked for a Ceylonese boss who was a Christian, and most of his employees were Christians too. Every Sunday I joined in their service and prayed. For more than three years, I only believed in God. After I encountered the first book of the monks, Dharma Master Sure and Dharma Master Chau who practiced “three steps one bow,” I admired them very much. They had bowed for two years and eight months from Los Angeles to the Sagely City in an attempt to save the world and all living beings.
In 1988, when the Venerable Master led a delegation for the third time to Malaysia to propagate the Dharma, he transmitted Three Refuges and the Five Precepts. An Amitabha Session was held at the Buddhist Association Headquarters in Kuala Lumpur. Under my siblings’ influence, I decided to take refuge with the Buddha. In 1990, I came to the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas to participate in the three-week Ten Thousand Buddhas Repentance. Our delegation comprised more than a hundred people. When we arrived at the Sagely City, it was already dark. The Venerable Master walked into the office and said with a smile, “Welcome!” I was so glad to see the Venerable Master again.
After the morning recitation the following day, I decided to practice three steps one bow from the Mountain Gate to the Buddha Hall for three weeks in gratitude to the Venerable Master. He has provided such a holy and serene Way-place for us to study the Buddhadharma and develop our Dharma body and wisdom life.
During that period, every morning after the morning recitation, I bowed from the Mountain Gate to the Buddha Hall. Subsequently many Buddhist friends joined the bowing. Two Dharma Masters came to lead the bowing. On the sixteenth day of the third lunar month,the Venerable Master’s birthday, my alarm did not ring and when I woke up it was six already. When I arrived at the Buddha Hall, it was already seven, and the assembly was doing Universal Bowing. As I recited “the Reverend Hsuan, the Noble Hua” and bowed nine times, the image of the Venerable Master who toiled so hard to establish the Sagely City appeared in my mind, and I was moved to tears.
I lost control of myself and tears rolled down my cheeks. I ran outside the Buddha Hall. My husband happened to be there and he passed me tissues to wipe my tears, but they continued to fall. Then I went back to my room to cry my heart out. When my roommate came back from breakfast and noticed that I was still crying, she said, “You have been crying nonstop; beware of the weeping demon! The weeping demon can cause you to cry nonstop.” That frightened me so I immediately stopped crying and went to the dining hall for breakfast.
That evening we had our Sutra lecture at Wonderful Words Hall. The Venerable Master sat in his seat and beamed. I thought, people have been saying that the Venerable Master knows everything. I have questions to ask the Venerable Master.
First, I asked, “Venerable Master, I like the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas very much and wish I could stay here. However, I remember that in Malaysia we have no Way-place of our own, only a rented place. I hope we will have the Venerable Master’s Way-place there soon, and I want to be a Dharma protector.” The Venerable Master responded by telling the story of Zhang Yu-Jie in Hong Kong, who had sold fake medicine and made a fortune and contracted cancer. The Venerable Master saved him and told him to make offerings to two thousand left-home people who had immigrated to Hong Kong from Mainland China. He consented at first but did not keep his word. I thought the Venerable Master was challenging me, “You say you want to, but can you actually do it?”
My other question was that I wished that the Venerable Master would aid me in making some money in the insurance business. The Venerable Master did not give a direct reply; instead he said, “I cannot teach the dharma of gold, silver and jewels. I can only teach the Buddhadharma.”
I wish to follow the Buddhas, Bodhisattvas and the Venerable Master in every life, so that I will no longer transmigrate in the six paths and suffer the pain of the three evil paths. Amitabha!
Q & A with the Venerable Master
Q: Why do people experience the suffering of not attaining what they want?
A : They suffer because they are too greedy. At night they cannot fall asleep, and during the day they have no appetite. All that is due to excessive greed.