Affinity

All posts tagged Affinity

Mahakasyapa and Ananda: A Lesson About Karma and Great Compassion

Published Mayo 13, 2015 by jptan2012

Some people, especially those who are not Buddhist or Taoist might find this post a little extreme because of the belief or teaching about reincarnation and that we humans could be reborn as animals, or insects, or could have come from either animals or insects. Nevertheless, no matter how shocking it is, and some may even consider it ridiculously degrading, the truth is this is a widely accepted belief in Buddhism and Taoism, and thus it is important to be kind and compassionate to all sentient beings.

Today, allow me to share the story of Mahakasyapa (also spelled as Mahakassapa) and Ananda. Mahakasyapa and Ananda are just two of the Sakyamuni Buddha’s (also spelled as Shakyamuni) disciple. Mahakasyapa is an old disciple, and Ananda, who is of the royal family before he became a disciple of Buddha and a monk, is young and famous not just for his astounding memory but also for being handsome.

In Buddhist temples, Mahakasyapa (Mahakassapa) is usually on the Buddha's left side (from our point of view - right side) and Ananda is on the Buddha's right side.

In Buddhist temples, Mahakasyapa (Mahakassapa) is usually on the Buddha’s left side (from our point of view – right side) and Ananda is on the Buddha’s right side.

One day, while they were out on a walk, the Buddha instructed Ananda to ask a fruit vendor for a watermelon. Ananda, confidently walked over to the lady who sells watermelon and begged for a watermelon. Remember, during those days it is traditional for monks to beg, and lay people even vendors would be very willing to donate food or whatever they can to the monks. However, much to Ananda’s surprise, the fruit lady not only denied him a watermelon, but also she rudely drove her away.

Ananda went back to the Buddha to report what happened. The Buddha then instructed Mahakasyapa to beg for a watermelon. Both Mahakasyapa and Ananda and other members of the sangha didn’t believe that Mahakasyapa will have better luck, but even before Mahakasyapa got to the fruit lady, the fruit lady ran towards him and offered him a watermelon to quench his thirst from the hot weather.

Needless to say, all the Buddha’s disciples were surprised. Then the Buddha explained to them what happened.

In one of their previous lives, Ananda and Mahakasyapa had come across the fruit lady. However, at that time the fruit lady was a cat. The cat died on the street, and when Ananda (in his previous life) saw the dead cat, he veered away because he didn’t like the smell of the rotting flesh and also he didn’t care about the dead cat. On the other hand, Mahakasyapa (in his previous life) when he saw the dead cat, he prayed for it, and picked it up to give the cat a proper burial. Mahakasyapa with his simple act of compassion and kindness towards the dead cat earned a lot of good karma affinity with the dead cat that now happens to be the fruit lady.

That simple act of compassion that Mahakasyapa did, which didn’t even cost him single money, earned him some good karma. Needless to say, Mahakasyapa did the good act of compassion and not for wanting good merits.

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A Reader Receives a Precious Gift from the Abbess of the Lotus Temple and Some Quaint Vajrapani Ruel Stories

Published Pebrero 25, 2015 by jptan2012

Today, I would like to share with you several quaint wonderful stories that happen to a reader MA, who has since then become a friend.

MA first contacted me to get the Vajrapani Ruel, and as soon as I met her, I sort of felt a certain affinity with her. In Filipino, we usually call this affinity ‘magaan ang loob’ or in Chinese ‘Gan Ying’.

As mentioned her experiences about the Vajrapani Ruel are quaint, and can be associated with several factors and not just about the Vajrapani Ruel. It can also be about her affinity with Kuan Yin.

Anyway, according to MA, who owns several businesses, one of which is an entertainment bar, for years she has been contacting this famous singer to perform in her bar. However, no matter how much she tried, said famous singer never responded to her FB messages and various forms of communications, even though she has left number for him to get in touch with her. One night, while holding the Vajrapani Ruel, and putting a pyrite on top of her mobile she sincerely wished that she be able to get said famous singer to perform in her bar. I think it was instinct that drove her to put the pyrite on top of her mobile phone. The next thing you know, the famous singer’s agent contacted her!

The Vajrapani Ruel looks simple, maybe even rustic, but this simple amulet is packed with a special talisman paper inside, with various ingredients, which includes Namtso Salt, soil, various herbs and plants, crystal, and a relic from a high lama. It's important to put the ruel inside a amulet holder or something sturdy as to not ruin it. If the cloth had tear which exposes or spill the ingredients inside, the ruel becomes useless.

The Vajrapani Ruel looks simple, maybe even rustic, but this simple amulet is packed with a special talisman paper inside, with various ingredients, which includes Namtso Salt, soil, various herbs and plants, crystal, and a relic from a high lama. It’s important to put the ruel inside a amulet holder or something sturdy as to not ruin it. If the cloth had tear which exposes or spill the ingredients inside, the ruel becomes useless.

Another quaint miracle is that one time she got really angry. According to MA she was really mad, when all of a sudden she felt heat emanating from her amulet holder where she put the Vajrapani Ruel. And just like that MA was reminded to be calm, and she did. I believe that prevented her from contributing more harm to the situation.

Just recently, she was in a deep earnest prayer, when all of a sudden she felt like the Vajrapani Ruel holder that she has on her body seems to expand. She was awakened from her prayer reverie, but she dismissed it as part of her imagination. She started praying in earnest again, and the same thing happened. She knew then that it’s not just imagination and that the Vajrapani Ruel was somehow assuring her that everything is going to be fine.

I am not sure whether this next story has something to do with the Vajrapani Ruel, or it is simply because she has an affinity with Kuan Yin. MA and I were supposed to meet last Chinese New Year, but because I was really busy I was only able to contact her the eve of CNY. However, she missed my call so we weren’t able to meet. The funny thing is that she didn’t even see my missed call. We were supposed to go to different temples, but because we didn’t get to talk she decided to just go to Lotus Temple on her own with her family. The funny thing is she only saw my missed call the night before when she arrived or when she left Lotus Temple, I don’t really remember, but the point is it was too late for us to meet.

At the Lotus Temple, after praying and lighting her incense, a relative asked her to inquire whether there are books in the temple that they can buy. MA then approached the volunteers at the temple’s office. They initially didn’t take notice of her. When MA finally got their attention, she inquired for books and added that she’s also looking for images that she can buy, she specifically mentioned Kuan Yin. They were surprised and thought she was Chinese, when she said she’s not, they then thought she’s a collector, she said no but that she just loves Kuan Yin.

They made her wait outside the office after a while the Abbess gave her an old Kuan Yin image, and she was told that it’s an antique. She got the image for free. The price of Kuan Yin doesn’t really matter, an image of Kuan Yin is AN IMAGE OF KUAN YIN regardless of the material or whether it is antique or not. But seeing it, it does look like an old beautiful piece. The designed is patterned after Ming Dynasty portrayal of Kuan Yin. Later I was able to come across a similar material image of Amitabha Buddha, which cost approximately Php 13,000.00 (US$ 225.00) 10 years ago! But that’s not the highlight, because I never heard that the temple giving out images for free, not to mention expensive images. But later on I was able to confirm with the Abbess that something prompted her to give MA that particular Kuan Yin!

This is the picture of the Kuan Yin image that MA got from the temple. It's about 4 inches tall.

This is the picture of the Kuan Yin image that MA got from the temple. It’s about 4 inches tall.

Before I finish this story, I just would like to ask that MA’s other business which is dealership of a commercial product of one of the country’s top beverage, won Top 3 as best dealer! What’s surprising is that she’s just 3 years in the business and definitely one of the youngest amongst all the dealers!!!!

You can also read the following posts about the Vajrapani Ruel:

For questions, comments and suggestions please email sanaakosirickylee@gmail.com

 

Serendipity and Affinity (Part 2)

Published Disyembre 28, 2014 by jptan2012

In my earlier post, I talked about Serendipity, now I would like to talk about Affinity. In Chinese there is a word called Yuen, which really has no direct English translation, but the closest word for it is affinity.

The Taoist and Feng Shui believers do believe that we sometimes have yuen or affinity with some Deities, Gods, Buddhas, or Bodhisattvas. The Buddhist don’t believe this, I personally tend to believe that yuen do exists but it is not a precursor for us to be able to get the help of the Buddhas or Bodhisattvas.

The Taoist belief that if you have yuen or affinity with a God or Buddha or Bodhisattva or Deity, your prayers tend to be heard better and it’ll be easier for you to receive a blessing. It is also said that if you have yuen or affinity, you’ll personally feel closer to the said Deity, God, Buddha or Bodhisattva.

Personally, while I believe in yuen or affinity with the Buddhas, I don’t believe that this makes it easier for you to receive their blessings, it only means that you may be more attuned to their messages and you might feel closer to them. Whether it is easier or they will give us more blessings because we have affinity with each other should be the same with all people, but yuen or affinity might make us more attuned to their message and blessings.

Writing this because just recently, TK, a reader who had had the opportunity to consult and meet with me in person exhibited a strong affinity with the Bodhisattva of Compassion or Avalokitesvara aka Kuan Yin.

TK, consulted me about her family, and the initial reading showed that she should wear an image of Kuan Yin carved out of a Pink Chalcedony. Luckily, she was able to acquire one and after wearing it for a few months, it got broken. I think it got broken because she needed to be cleansed of a negative energy that may be causing her some harm thus causing her family problems. She has to replace it with another Kuan Yin pendant carved out of a High Grade Black Dragon Obsidian stone, this is quite hard to find but she found one. Then after while she also needed a Kuan Yin carved out of a Golden Chalcedony. Again, this is a very rare stone, but for some weird reason, just a day before she looked for one, a supplier has one, which arrived just a day before she started looking for one.

The Kuan Yin with the Heart Sutra is part of the Holy Trinity of Protection for the 2015 Year of the Wood Sheep. The sutra can be carried separately.

The Kuan Yin with the Heart Sutra is part of the Holy Trinity of Protection for the 2015 Year of the Wood Sheep. The sutra can be carried separately.

I guess one of the biggest surprises was when I wrote about THE HEART OF THE PRAJNA PARAMITA SUTRA where I mentioned my Kuan Yin with Heart Sutra pendant. Most of you would know that it is quite difficult to find this particular pendant, and I myself had only come across it a few times. However, TK for some reason read my article and somehow although they don’t know each other, another person who is not a regular reader of my blog also happened to check my blog and read that particular post. It also happened that he still has one Kuan Yin with Heart Sutra pendant left. Then for some reason, TK also received a message from a person who all of sudden thought of sending her message, TK mentioned about the pendant, and this person also happened to have gotten a call from the person who read my post who has the pendant. Needless to say, this person became a bridge for TK to have the pendant.

Back side of my Kuan Yin pendant. You can see though it's small the The The Heart of the Prajna Paramita Sutra is written behind it.

Back side of my Kuan Yin pendant. You can see though it’s small the The The Heart of the Prajna Paramita Sutra is written behind it.

When a monk heard about the story and when he got TK’s birthday and name, he said TK has yuen or affinity with Kuan Yin. I also had come to this conclusion myself. The coincidences is simply too much. I guess TK is so lucky to have yuen with Kuan Yin.

 

For comments, suggestions, or questions please email sanaakosirickylee@gmail.com

Serendipity and Affinity (Part 1)

Published Disyembre 27, 2014 by jptan2012

One thing that I really love about traveling is the fact that I can use the waiting time at the airport to write, and because I have been doing a lot official/business traveling the past few months, most of what I’ve written lately came from all the waiting at the airport. My next 7 or 8 posts are all written at the airport also, so expect several posts in the next few days. They will be automatically published via scheduled posting.

But before we move to the main topic, I would like to remind everybody who is interested to get a general view of what’s in store for the coming 2015 Year of the Wood Sheep to read the following articles:

 


 

Today, I would like to write about serendipity and affinity. The first is a widely accepted occurrence in Feng Shui, Taoism, and Buddhism, while the second one is a debated phenomenon in Buddhism, but widely accepted in Taoism and Feng Shui.

A reader of this blog who since then become a very good friend, DU, has exhibited the truth that serendipity really happens. I do not doubt that this phenomenon really exist, but I’m writing it here because I just want to make a point that we should not ignore the serendipitous moments in our life.

I’m making DU as an example here because by virtue of my closeness to her, I also witnessed a lot of this serendipitous occurrence in here life. A lot of these manifested in the form of her being able to acquire the needed charms or amulets either for her or for her loved ones.

DU and her husband is one of the few people who contacted me to request for the WISH FULFILLING AND BUDDHA’S BLESSING MANTRA PENDANT. As most of you know, requesting for the pendant comes with a Bazi or Paht Chee reading as well. The chart of DU’s husband shows that he will need a Thousand – Hand Kuan Yin pendant. For those of you who are familiar with acquiring either gold or semi – precious stones pendant would know that there is no Thousand – Hand Kuan Yin pendant that has been manufactured that’s really close to what a Thousand – Hand Kuan Yin should be, or as close as to her image. But much to my surprise, somebody offered me one a few days before my meeting with DU and her husband, and to make the long story short, with a heavy heart even though I really love the pendant it went to them.

This is a very rare Thousand - Hand Kuan Yin pendant. Most Thousand - Hand Kuan Yin pendant will only feature a little more than ten hands, but this one has a lot. Not to mention that it is made of good quality jade.

This is a very rare Thousand – Hand Kuan Yin pendant. Most Thousand – Hand Kuan Yin pendant will only feature a little more than ten hands, but this one has a lot. Not to mention that it is made of good quality jade.

Not to mention the price of the pendant, although it’s made of high quality jade is not very expensive. I think in peso it was only about Php 20,000.00 or Php 25,000.00. More than a year after they got the pendant, I was able to come across the same pendant online, and while it’s made of cheaper quality of jade, it costs several thousands more. I don’t really remember the price but I think it’s about US$ 40,000.00!

Also for DU’s husband, just recently because he is about to go through some changes in his life, he is in need of a Bat with Coin made of Lapis Lazuli pendant. Again, for those who are familiar with it, its quite difficult to get this particular combination, but surprisingly, there is one reputable supplier of good quality Lapiz Lazuli who has it in the particular image that DU’s husband’s needs. And it’s the only one left. Needless to say, they acquired it.

DU ‘s brother also need an image of La Tza, again this is a very difficult image to find, especially one carved in jade. I told DU that it is quite difficult to get this, but I think she was the one who told me to call up my supplier, which I did, and lo and behold there is one piece. Again needless to say they acquired it, and when a Taoist monk was blessing it, the monk expressed surprised that we got hold of such image.

DU had so much more experience regarding serendipity. I don’t really remember all her serendipitous experience, but recently, we just found out that she’ll need an original design Lock Coin, however, there are several kinds of lock coin in the Feng Shui market and not all of them are appropriate. Somehow, she remembered in our past conversation that someone is selling a lock coin, so when we called up the person, indeed she still has the lock coin and more than just having it, she’s selling it at a discounted rate. Furthermore, DU also needs a Star of David pendant, we’ve been looking for a Star of David for a few months because she really wants it but unfortunately, we didn’t found any. But the want has since become a need and surprisingly we found one and what’s more the Star of David is made of Citrine, a stone that DU needs and want also. So she inquired about the price, but is unavailable to afford it. So she had to let go of it. But then when the money for the Star of David came she inquired again, unfortunately, it’s no longer available. Naturally, we thought that it is really not for her. As it turn out, there is another Star of David made of Citrine that is gem quality that is coming, again needless to say she got it for herself.

DU has so much more serendipitous experience, every time she will need something, it seems like it will naturally come to her. I believe that it is fate telling her that she really needs them and that she should get them.

 

For comments, suggestions, or questions please email sanaakosirickylee@gmail.com

Getting to Know the ‘Great Sage, Equal to Heaven’ Monkey God called Sun Wukong!

Published Enero 7, 2012 by jptan2012

In my previous posts about Feng Shui – 2012 YEAR OF THE WATER DRAGON FENG SHUI FLYING STAR FORECAST, FENG SHUI-CHINESE ZODIAC FORECAST FOR 2012 YEAR OF THE WATER DRAGON PART 1 AND PART 2: and 2012 CHINESE NEW YEAR FENG SHUI RITUALS TO USHER IN THE YEAR OF THE WATER DRAGON – I made mention of the monkey god Sun Wukong as one of the most powerful wealth and protector deity and as the deity featured in the specially designed WEALTH AND MASTER PROTECTION PENDANT.

A lot of people are not familiar with the Taoist and Chinese Buddhist Monkey God called Sun Wukong and a lot of Westeners think that having a Monkey God is a preposterous idea. However, the truth is Sun Wukong or the Monkey God is one of the most wonderful and powerful Taoist immortal and Buddhist deity. However, Sun Wukong is also one of the most misunderstood Buddhist deity. A lot of people thought that Sun Wukong is merely a Taoist God or Immortal, but the truth is Sun Wukong embraced Buddhism and thus is also revered in Chinese Buddhism. I say Chinese Buddhism because I’m not sure whether he’s recognized in Tibetan Buddhism. But note that there’s also a Monkey God in Hinduism.

In the Taoist story of creation, Nuwa is the goddess who created the universe. It’s believed that she purposely left a blessed celestial rock that through the passage of time and exposure to different forces and energies became the Stone Monkey [Chinese Character:石猴  Pronunciation: Shí Hóu] .

The Monkey God being a creature out of a celestial rock is naturally intelligent. He banded with other groups of monkey. But has always been discontented about the way they live their life. One time in search for a bottomless source of water, they came across a strong waterfall. They believe that the true power of their future lies behind the curtain of water. However, no one dared to be the first person to enter the curtain of water (waterfall) for fear of the current and the unknown. Stone Monkey volunteered to his group but demanded that should he survived the crossing of the curtain water he should be honored as the king of the monkeys. All the monkeys agreed and Stone Monkey crossed the curtain water and found a cave behind the curtain water filled with fruits and flowers. He called this place the Mountain of Flowers and Fruits [Chinese Character: 花果山].

An artwork depicting the monkeys in out side the Mountain of Flowers and Fruits.

He called in his fellow monkeys, told them about this great place and encourage them to live there. He also reminded them of their agreement that he should survive the crossing he will be then honored as king. The other monkeys-young and old-honored this agreement. As the King of the Monkeys, the Stone Monkey gave himself the name: Handsome Monkey-King [Chinese Character:美猴王 Pronunciation: Měi Hóuwáng ].

However, the Handsome Monkey-King being naturally impatient got tired of his Mountain and Flowers and Fruits. He decided to that he wants to learn more about Taoist magics. He left his monkeys and the Mountain and flowers and Fruits to look for a ‘master’. After traveling for more than ten years and after passing several ‘exams’ a master adopted him, gave him the name Sun Wukong [Chinese Character: 孫悟空 Pronunciation:Sūn Wùkōng], and then train him with some magic and supernatural skills. He soon mastered the Transformation Magic and was also trained in Cloud Riding and he is also able to jump 54,000 kms. in a single flip. However, he played with his Transformation Magic and boasted his skills with the other students. When his master found out about this he was banished.

Sun Wukong then went back to the Mountain of Flowers and Fruits where he found out that his fellow monkeys were attacked and the younger monkeys were kidnapped by a monster. He then went to look for the said monster, freed and avenged his monkeys. He was greatly satisfied with his success but realized that he need a weapon worthy of his powers, for the monster that he attacked has scimatars.

In search for this weapon, he arrived at the lair of the Dragon Kings of the Ocean. The Dragon Kings kindly received him but Sun Wukong abused their kindness greatly inconvenienced them. He demanded for a weapon and for an outfit worthy of his power. After several choices he finally found the most powerful weapon in the Dragon Kings of the Ocean stockroom. The weapon is called the Magical Golden Hooped Rod which weighs 8.1 tons. Much to the surprised of the Dragon Kings was able to carry the weapon, something that hasn’t been done before. The Magical Golden Hooped Rod is really heavy, but once you’re able to carry it you are able to command it to change it size, does Sun Wukong command it to become as small as needle so that he can hide it behind his ears. As mentioned, not contented with just getting the weapon, he also demanded the Dragon Kings of the Ocean to give him magical clothes worthy of his power. They then gave him Golden Chain Mail ( Mail is a type of armor consisting of small metal rings linked together in a pattern to form a mesh), Phoenix-Feathered Cap, and Cloud-Walking Boots.

With his new found abilities, weapon and magical clothers, Sun Wukong decided that he wants to be truly immortal. He then went to hell and erased his name and that of his monkeys from the book of hell. This made him and his monkeys truly immortal.

When the Jade Emperor found out about this he called on Sun Wukong intending to punish him. However, upon the advice of the other Heavenly Beings the Jade Emperor decided to just give him a non-existing position in the Heavenly Kingdom. He was made caretaker of the Heavenly Horses. Where he got the title Keeper of the Heavenly Horses [Chinese Character: 弼馬溫 Pronunciation: Bìmǎwēn]. But Bimawen soon became bored again and challenged the Jade Emperor.

Angered, the Jade Emperor sent Heavenly Beings to subdue Bimawen. However, Bimawen’s power is so great that the Heavenly Beings that was sent to subdue him were no match to his skills, thus they are unable to subdue him. The other Earthly Immortals found out about his and they started addressing him as the ‘Great Sage, Equal of Heaven’ [Chinese Character: 齊天大聖 Pronunciation: Qítiān Dàshèng]. The Great Sage greatly enjoyed this title and immediately adopted it.

However, with the help of Sakyamuni Buddha, The Great Sage was subdued and imprisoned. However, he begged the Boddhisatva of Compassion (Goddess of Mercy) Kuan Yin to release him. Kuan Yin realizing The Great Sage’s power decided to have The Great Sage accompany the Tang Buddhist Monk Xuan Zang in his journey to the West to acquire some Buddhist scrolls. Nevertheless, Kuan Yin knows that The Great Sage with his  tremendous power will be hard to subdue. Thus Kuan Yin instructed Xuan Zang to trick The Great Sage into wearing s Heavenly Headband. Using some prayers the Heavenly Headband will cause pain to The Great Sage. Xuan Zang is to used this whenever The Great Sage becomes out of control.

The Great Sage became the protector and disciple of Xuan Zang. Thus earning him the name Pilgrim or Ascetic [Chinese Character: 行者 Pronunciation: Xíngzhě]. Xuan Zang did have to used the Heavenly Headband but he soon was humbled and subdued. Other than being the disciple of Xuan Zang, Pilgrim became the Xuan Zang’s main protector also. More than that he is also the wittiest disciple of Xuan Zang (there are 3 more disciples). He often acts as the strategist of Xuan Zang.

The story of the Monkey King or Monkey God which is depicted in the novel Journey to the West has been made into movies countless of times.

An artwork depicting Sun Wukong fighting a devil.

Another interpretation of the Monkey God or Monkey King.

Despite of the numerous challenges that they came across during their journey to the West, they were still able to finish the ‘order’. Because all of this Sakyamuni rewarded all of them giving Pilgrim the title of Victorious Fighting Buddha [Chinese Character: 鬥戰勝佛 Pronunciation: Dòu-zhànshèng-fó].

One of the extremely rare art work depicting The Great Sage, Equal of Heaven – Sun Wukong as a Buddha. The Victorious Fighting Buddha.

This story is greatly detailed in the novel of the fictionalized account of the legendary pilgrimage of the Tang Buddhist Monk Xuan Zang. It is unfortunate, that Westerners regard it as a fiction. However, to most Taoist and Buddhist believed that the story really happened in the Heavenly Realm.

I personally have a deep devotion to The Great Sage Sun Wukong. But that’s another story for another post.

In writing this I hope you’ll have a better understanding of who Sun Wukong is and why I decided to have Him as the main deity of my specially designed – WEALTH AND MASTER PROTECTION PENDANT. He is no ordinary Monkey God, he is ‘The Great Sage, Equal of Heaven’.

The Great Sage, Equal of Heaven – Sun Wukong is the main deity of the specially designed WEALTH AND MASTER PROTECTION PENDANT. This is because othe than being a powerful protector, the Monkey God is also the main strategist of the pilgrims who journeyed to the West. He often the one who thinks for the group.

At the back of the WEALTH AND MASTER PROTECTION are the Chinese character for ‘THE GREAT SAGE, EQUAL OF HEAVEN’ and the images of the Three Celestial Guardians (provides protection against the 3 Killings), Five Element Pagoda (provides protection from the Five Yellow Star or Flying Star #5) and the Ksitigarbha Fireball (provides protection against the Argumentative Star). I’m also thinking of looking for a jade supplier and a crafts man who can craft the WEALTH AND MASTER PROTECTION PENDANT on a Jade. Chinese people has a natural affinity towards jade and a lot of people have been looking for a JADE WEALTH AND MASTER PROTECTION PENDANT.

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