PureInsight | April 25, 2005
[PureInsight.org] There are many records in Chinese history where blasphemous people were met with tribulations. I have compiled a list of stories in this category and hopefully today's blasphemous people will take a few lessons from these true stories and stop attacking the Falun Buddha Fa (Falun Gong).
The following are seven records in Min Xiang Ji.
I. During the Southern and Northern Dynasties (420-589 A.D.) when Buddhism was becoming increasingly popular in both northern and southern China, a beautiful young woman named Zhi Tong joined the Jian Jing An Buddhist Nunnery in the Capital City of the Southern Song Dynasty. In the 9th year of the Yuan Jia period under Emperor Wen's reign (424-453 A.D.), the elderly nun who supervised Zhi Tong's cultivation practice passed away. After the elderly nun's death, Zhi Tong left the nunnery and stopped believing in Buddhism. She married a man named Liang Pu in Wei County as his concubine and gave birth to a boy. Liang Pu was not a wealthy man. In fact, when the boy reached the age of seven, they could ill afford to clothe him.
One day Zhi Tong remembered she still had a few scrolls of Buddhist scriptures written on white silk fabric. She washed these fabrics to remove the Buddhist scriptures and made clothes out of them. One year later Zhi Tong became ill. She became mentally deranged and felt distraught and terrified at all times. She developed severe abscess on her skin, which quickly ruptured. Then a lot of thin white worms started to grow in her ruptured flesh. Each day she would collect a large bowl of these white worms. Enmeshed in excruciating pain and anxiety, Zhi Tong could not stop howling in agony day and night. She often heard a voice in the air saying, "You deserve this type of punishment for destroying Buddhist scriptures to make clothes." Zhi Tong died after about two weeks of suffering.
II. In the 20th year of the Zhenguan period during Emperor Tai Zong's reign (626-649 A.D.), Emperor Tai Zong led a military action to subjugate the Guizi region. A man named Xue Guxun was an officer in the emperor's army. He was in charge of military warehouses. After Emperor Tai Zong's army conquered Guizi, Xue sneaked into a local Buddhist sanctuary and scraped the gold off the face of the Buddha statue. In two weeks time, Xue's eyebrows fell off. After he returned to his hometown, Yi Zhou, he went to a Buddhist temple and sincerely repented in front of a statue of a Buddha. He donated all the gold he had scraped off to the Buddhist temple. Shortly afterwards, his eyebrows grew back.
III. The Ming Xiang Buddhist Temple was located in the southern part of Fengzhou city. The temple had several Buddha statues. Each statue was plated in gold. When the rebel army invaded the region, a destitute person in town started to sneak into the temple and scrape the gold off the Buddha statues from time to time. By the time the rebellion was over, he had scraped off all the gold on the Buddha statues. Then he developed a type of vesicular skin disease all over his body. It was unbearably itchy that he had to ease the sensation by violent scratching. Even after he had scraped off his skin, he still felt terribly itchy. Thus he kept scraping his skin and flesh to the extent that his bones became exposed. He eventually died of the disease. This was the retribution for damaging the Buddha statues.
IV. Zhou Zong lived in Guangling County during the Southern Song Dynasty in the Southern and Northern Dynasties (420-589 A.D.). In the seventh year of the Yuanjia period during Emperor Wen's reign (424-453 A.D.), Zhou Zong joined the civil war to fight the north. When the south was defeated, Zhou Zong fled with five people from the same hometown. The six of them took back roads and fled to the north of Pengcheng where they found an empty Buddhist monastery. There was not a single Buddhist monk around, but there was a Buddha statue made of crystal. Together they stole the crystal statue and exchanged it for food when they left the city. One of them soon became sickly and frail. The rest of the five men looked down on him and refused to share the food with him. So the sick person didn't eat any of the food that they obtained from the stolen Buddha statue. He did make a recovery on his own. Afterwards, the six of them returned to their separate homes. In the next three to four years, the five men who shared the food, including Zhou Zong, developed severe scabies and died. The person who had [immediately] fallen sick was the only one who lived.
V. During the Song Dynasty (960-1279 A.D.), there was a man named Shen Sengfu in Wu Xing. Because there was a famine in the area, Shen left town and begged his way to Shanyang. After he arrived in Shanyang, he would beg for food in the village during the day and sleep in Buddhist monasteries at night. At the time, the Shanyangdong Buddhist Monastery had a lot of small Buddha statues made of copper. Together with several people from his hometown, Wu Xing, Shen Sengfu stole many copper statues and they filled up their suitcases and bags with them. After they brought these copper statues back home, they melted them in the fire and made copper coins out of them. Soon the government found them and arrested them for stealing Buddhist statues and making illegal coins. On the way to the Capital city where Shen would be tried, the police escort had to take a boat. As soon as Shen boarded, he groaned in agony, "Someone is burning me with fire!" Shen kept moaning in excruciating pain day and night, and died before the trial began. There were openings all over his body, as if the skin were ruptured because he had been roasted in fire. A man from his hometown named Zhu Heng knew Shen Sengfu. He had witnessed how Shen had suffered before his death.
VI. There was a Buddhist monk named Dao Zhi in the Beiduobao Buddhist Monastery during the Song Dynasty (960-1279 A.D.). Dao Zhi was responsible for guarding the temple, however, he pilfered a lot of rich ornaments from the hall that he was entrusted to safeguard. Later he even stole the pearl between the eyes of the Buddha statues. He also dug a hole in the wall to make it look like a thief from the outside had broken into through the hole. As a result, no one suspected Dao Zhi.
About ten days following his last theft, Dao Zhi became ill. He saw a deity repeatedly coming and spearing him. He shrieked in shock and in agony, and he started to bleed. At first the deity came to spear him once or twice a day. Then he became increasingly ill. The deity would come to spear him more frequently and Dao Zhi's body was full of injuries. In the end, Dao Zhi did not have the strength to moan.
Other monks in the monastery started to suspect that Dao Zhi might have committed a terrible sin, so they encouraged him to confess and repent for his crime. At first, Dao Zhi did not want to confess. Three days later, he made a confession and cried for help. "How foolish I have been! I didn't believe in hell, so I committed a terrible crime. This is why I am now suffering from the most horrible punishment. I am suffering from repeated spearing. After I die, I will be cut into pieces and boiled in a large pot. Now my body is full of festering wounds. I only beg for Buddha's mercy and forgiveness. I don't have any valuables. All I have are my clothes, quilt, hats and shoes. Please sell all of my belongings and perhaps the money will be enough to pay for the expense of a celebration of the Buddha festivals." Dao Zhi repeatedly urged his fellow monks to sell all of his belongs as a way to repent for his terrible sin. "I have stolen two pearls from Buddha statues," Dao Zhi added. "I have sold one of the pearls to a woman, and there is no way you can find it. I sold the other pearl to Chen Zhao. Please buy it back from him."
After Dao Zhi died, the monks bought the pearl back from Chen Zhao once they had accumulated enough donations of money. The monks also offered the Buddha a vegetarian feast to ask for Buddha's forgiveness on behalf of Dao Zhi. At first, the craftsman was unable to put the pearl back onto the Buddha statue. It was after the monks worshipped the Buddha statue and offered the Buddha incense that the craftsman was finally able to install the pearl back on the Buddha statue.
One year later, the monks in the monastery often heard a voice in the air at night. They had to pay close attention to tell it was the voice of Dao Zhi. He said, "Since I died, I have suffered from all types of torture imaginable without any break. I will have to suffer from the non-stop torture for a very long time. I would like to thank you all for your compassion and your help. Because you have bought back one of the pearls, I am now given breaks between tortures. I am immensely thankful for what you have done for me. I feel that I have to come here to thank you in person."
When Dao Zhi spoke, the monks could smell a terrible stench similar to rotten flesh in the air. The stench was unbearable. It took a long time for the stench to dissipate after Dao Zhi's voice disappeared.
VII. There was a man named Tang Wenbo in Ganyu, Donghai during the Song Dynasty (960-1279 A.D.). Tang's younger brother was addicted to gambling and had lost all of the family's money and property by gambling. There was a Buddhist monastery in the village. A lot of travelers who passed by the monastery would donate money for the monks and offer incense to the Buddha. Tang Wenbo's younger brother repeatedly stole money from the monastery's donation box. Later he contracted scabies. His father hired a fortuneteller to give his son a reading to find out the root cause of his illness. The fortuneteller said, "It is because he stole money offered to the Buddha." His father became outraged. "What is Buddha? I don't believe Buddha has the power to make my son ill. Why don't I steal something offered to Buddha? If I should become ill, I will believe in Buddha."
The daughter-in-law of the former County governor He Xin once weaved a belt with four images of Buddha on it and offered it to a Buddha statue in the monastery as a gift. Tang's father stole the belt and started wearing the belt. In less than 100 days, Tang's father developed a terrible vesicular skin disease that started around his waist.
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2003/4/25/21353.html