A Story from the Buddha School: The Buddhist Pagoda Completed on the Sixth

Compiled by Tai Ping

PureInsight | May 24, 2004

[PureInsight.org] During the Northern and South Dynasties [1], an age of civil wars and disunity in China, there lived a man in Jizhou (located in today's Henan Province of northern China) during the Northern Qi Dynasty (550-577 A.D.). He joined the Northern Qi's army to fight against the Liang Dynasty (502 – 557 A.D.). On defeat of the Northern Qi's army, he was captured and became a slave of the Liang. His parents, who still lived in their hometown, Jizhou, lost contact with him. They thought he had died in battle. Therefore, they built a brick Buddhist pagoda in his memory. After the pagoda was built, his family held a vegetarian banquet and welcomed everyone to join the banquet. Several hundred monks and civilians attended the banquet.

Just when people were about to start eating the banquet, someone knocked at the door. The missing Jizhou man's father opened the door and found an elegant-looking monk outside. The monk asked the man's father, "May I have some congee? You don't need to give me a bowl. Just put it in a linen bag. May I also have a pair of shoes?" The father asked the monk to join the banquet, but the monk politely declined his invitation. The monk said, "I am in a hurry, so I don't have time to sit down and eat." The man's father gave the monk what he had asked for. The monk accepted the congee and shoes and left.

At this time, the missing Jizhou man was a slave and forced to herd water buffaloes near a lake in the south of the Yangtze River. Suddenly, a monk appeared before him, holding a linen bag filled with congee and a pair of new shoes. The monk approached him and asked, "Do you want to go home to see your parents?" The man wept and answered, "I really do not dare to hold such hopes."

The monk asked him to sit down and eat the congee. After he finished the congee, the monk asked him to put on the pair of new shoes. Then the monk put his cassock on the ground and told him to sit in the center of the cassock. The monk grabbed the four corners of the cassock, holding the man within, and threw it twenty feet up in the air.

After landing on the ground, the missing Jizhou man opened his eyes only to find that both the monk and the cassock had disappeared and that he was standing right in front of his home. He walked into the house and found his parents and guests still dining at the banquet. His parents were overjoyed to see him. They asked how he managed to get home. He told them everything that had happened. His father looked at the leftover congee in the canvas bag and the shoes on his feet and found they were what he had given the monk moments earlier.

Everyone in the village was astonished by this story and immediately started practicing Buddhism. Because the story took place on the sixth day of the month, the Buddhist pagoda was referred to as "The Buddhist Pagoda Completed on the Sixth."

I think this story shows that building a Buddhist pagoda to honor the Buddha Fa is considered a highly virtuous deed. Because of the man's parents' altruistic gift, the divine monk saved the son and returned him to his family. It follows that it must be a severe sin to damage the Buddha Fa and persecute cultivators. It is sad that in today's China, Jiang Zemin, is consumed by his jealousy over Falun Gong and is ruthlessly persecuting Falun Gong practitioners and slandering Falun Gong to justify the persecution. Many people have fallen prey to Jiang Zemin's slanderous lies about Falun Gong and have unknowingly committed grave sins when they helped to persecute Falun Gong practitioners, or cultivators of the Buddha Fa. Falun Gong practitioners are clarifying the facts about Falun Gong because they do not wish to see the world's people suffer from retribution for persecuting Buddha Fa cultivators. They only wish to offer them opportunities to do the right thing and make up for their sins. There are many similar stories in history where people suffered retribution for damaging the Buddha Fa or persecuting Buddha Fa cultivators. We hope you will not misunderstand Falun Gong practitioners' good intention and their compassion.

[1] The Northern and Southern Dynasties is a period when Buddhism (introduced into China in the first century A.D.) became increasingly popular in both north and south China.

Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2004/5/2/26900.html

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