Since mankind came to Earth in Yin Phase, we all lived through many lives. Through these lives, we have accumulated tremendous debts and sins and caused many catastrophes.
We committed sins and owed debts to others in one life, came back in another life to try to repay, but instead, accumulated even more. Thus we are trapped in the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth.
For those who have received Tien-Tao and sincerely practice Tao, all those whom the practitioners trespassed against are now worried that debts cannot be collected if the practitioners return to God’s kingdom forever.
So they approach the Judge of the Underworld for justice. Since the Judge of the Underworld is fair and just, he cannot prohibit them from collecting. Thus, the manifestations of karma of these practitioners will be accelerated.
This is why these people will encounter obstacles such as being possessed, running into accidents, or getting severe illness, etc.
Through these sufferings,
knowingly or not,
their debts to the others are paid off.
Those who do not have a strong faith and clear vision think that by receiving Tien-Tao and practicing Tao, they can live a better material life. Now that they encounter so many obstacles and are laughed at by their relatives and friends who do not understand Tao, their wills to continue became impaired.
They fail to realize that a piece of jade must be ground in order to realize its use, and a nugget of gold must be smelt in order to realize its value. Without high mountains, valleys cannot be contrasted. Iron must be smelted and forged many times to become steel.
We hope that all who faces obstacles can bear and live through them. Confucius said,
“If one cannot bear with
small sufferings and sacrifices,
he cannot achieve his ultimate goal.”
56. If a person sins when he is young but repents and practices Tao in his old age, can he attain Tao?
The sea of suffering has no shore except for those who repent. If a person sins when he is young but repents in his old age, he can attain Tao as long as he vows to practice Tao, discards all wrongs and do rights, changes all sinful thoughts to kind thoughts, becomes a vegetarian, and receive Tien-Tao from the Enlightened Teacher with Tien-Ming. 1
Actually, this applies to all regardless of age. This is why there is the saying,
“The moment one discovers
his True Self and
he puts down the butcher knife and
sins no more,
he immediately echoes
the heart of a Buddha.”
This is verified by the case of Han Wen-gong * who persecuted Buddhism most of his life but repented and believed in Tao in his old age.
* Han Wen-gong was a scholar and held government offices in the Tang Dynasty.
57. Can a lifelong vegetarian who has done many good deeds but violates his vows and turns back from vegetarianism in his old age still attain Tao?
These types of persons have a good foundation, but lack firm commitment to their vows. Since they lack wisdom and vision for the Truth, they stray away from the Enlightened Teacher with Tien-Ming. 1 That is why their hearts become reversed and they abandon accumulated merits.
As their emotions and desires take over their minds, their merits start to erode until totally depleted, and eventually, they will stay in the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth. They cannot attain Tao.
58. Can a person who lacks knowledge and wisdom improve knowledge and wisdom by practicing Tao?
If one practices Gong-fu 15 diligently, one may seek knowledge and wisdom in tranquility. An ancient sage said,
“Staying plain and simple,
one affirms his will;
staying tranquil, one advances far.”
There is another saying,
“Tao is learned in tranquility.
Knowledge is acquired through learning.
So if one has no desire to learn,
he has no knowledge.
If one cannot remain tranquil,
he cannot learn Tao successfully.”
This is why those who are arrogant cannot acquire the essence, and those who are impatient cannot reason. If a person stays tranquil in practicing Gong-fu, the wisdom he acquired will allow him to excel in both wisdom and virtues.
This kind of wisdom is different from those gained from books and Scriptures. Why? It is because once a person discovers his True Self; he acts according to the Buddha nature and the Truth.
59. Should a practitioner of Tao be afraid of birth and death?
As long as there is birth there must be death. However, a practitioner of Tao should treat death as returning home. The day of birth for any life is the starting point of death in the future. Similarly, the day of death for any life is the starting point of birth in the future.
The cycle of yin and yang, which represents death and birth, regenerates itself eternally. Even Saints and Sages cannot escape this cycle. Thus a practitioner of Tao takes birth and death most seriously and also most lightly. Why?
If a practitioner of Tao is not afraid of death, why should he practice Tao for the eternal life of his soul? If he is indeed afraid of death, why should he learn to take emotions, desires, and the death of the body lightly?
Besides, by practicing Tao, one eventually will transcend the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth. So, a practitioner of Tao will not be concerned about the length of his life.