Since the United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters (UIWBAH) issued the notice of fund-raising for purchasing a temple as a bodhimanda for Buddhist cultivators to receive initiations and learn Buddha-dharma, some people raised several very good questions, which are:
- Does the amount of an offering or donation represent the magnitude of the merit?
- According to people’s experiences, the ways of making offering between questing for the dharma and presenting offerings for learning the dharma with esoteric Buddhism which supposedly possess the greatest dharma and learning common dharmas from exoteric Buddhism are totally different. Then, is it true that one has to offer a lot of money in order to learn the great dharma of esoteric Buddhism and be conferred the dharma of state practice?
- Is it true that one who does not have the mentality of making offering will not be able to learn great dharma and will not become accomplished?
- Because common dharmas are taught in exoteric Buddhism, is it true that no big offerings should be made?
- What kind of offerings are required in order to attend the dharma assembly of empowering the treasure book of Expounding the Absolute Truth through the Heart Sutra with Buddha-bestowed nectars and see the live scene of nectars being bestowed by Buddhas?
Because these questions absolutely cannot be answered by an eminent monk or a holy and virtuous one, answers have to be sought from a great holy and virtuous one or even higher. Therefore, we made a special effort to beseech H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III to give us a discourse on Buddha-dharma with regard to these questions raised. H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III gave the following discourse on the dharma to holy and virtuous ones of UIWBAH.
H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III said, “Three points of explanation must be given to your questions:”
“First, cultivators must first establish correct knowledge and views and should clearly understand that there are great dharmas in both esoteric Buddhism and exoteric Buddhism. It is not true that only esoteric Buddhism has great dharmas and what exoteric Buddhism has is common dharmas. Such knowledge and view are erroneous. However, the dharmas of state practice belong to neither Tibetan Esoteric Buddhism nor exoteric Buddhism. The dharmas of state practice are not associated with sects and schools. These dharmas are solely possessed and taught by the Buddha.”
“Second, anyone who is not genuinely sincere toward Buddhas and Bodhisattvas will not be able to learn great dharma and will not attain accomplishment. On the other hand, one who has a genuinely sincere mentality and is truly working on Buddhist endeavors, cultivating, and benefiting living beings can learn great dharma. Then, sincerely upholding the dharma in one’s conduct can lead to accomplishment!!! If a person only verbally express his sincerity and gratitude but does not have the basic willingness of making an offering and does not have any real deeds of offering, the so-called mind practice of respecting Buddhas and Bodhisattvas are void and unreal. This person is simply deceiving himself. This is just speaking nicely with false sincerity and gratitude. There is no need to say that this kind of people will not be able to learn great dharma but one thing is for certain. Even if you were taught a great dharma, the yidam of the dharma will not have a correspondence with you and instead will leave you far and away. Therefore, you will not become accomplished.”
“Thirdly, as long as one is truly sincere toward your UIWBAH’s plan of purchasing a temple to teach true Buddha-dharma, makes a donation toward the purchase of the temple that is compatible with his ability but does not hurt the ability of sustaining his own good fortune and supply, and does not exert a pressure on him, and is doing this act of making offering to Buddha-dharma and benefiting living beings while in a happy and relaxed state, I believe that this type of person is certain to be able to learn great Buddha-dharma.”
“As to the question of whether a lot of money is required to learn great dharma, you all must first be clear about one thing: Actually more important than the amount of money is whether the person has a sincere mind or a faked attitude by real measurement. A sincere offering made to Buddhas and Bodhisattvas has to be made from one’s inner mind and by doing what he can. Let’s use the following example as an analogy.”
“Suppose one of the people mentioned in this example is a billionaire or even richer. He always praises Buddha-dharma and advises people to do good deeds. He also made grand vows to publicize himself and declared that all his undertakings were devoted to Buddhist endeavors, were contributed to Buddhism, and were for benefiting living beings. However, the money he offered to Buddhist endeavors is even less than that offered by an ordinary person whose financial resources is sufficient for the basic needs of life. Does this fact match the vow he made? You all will know clearly without needing any explanation from me whether the vow he made is for contributing to Buddhism and benefiting living beings. How can great dharma be transmitted to this kind of person?”
“Then, there is another person whose assets are just sufficient for supporting his living for this life with at most a surplus of several dozens of dollars. This person praises Buddha-dharma and advises people to do good deeds and also made the vow of having all his undertakings devoted to Buddhist endeavors and benefiting living beings. In the end, after keeping sufficient assets to ensure the living expenses of him and his family and the resources for cultivation, he sincerely took some money from that surplus of several dozens of dollars to offer to Buddhism. I would regard this person as doing all he can. He truly intended to benefit living beings from the bottom of his heart and his deeds are virtuous. Great dharma will definitely be taught to him.”
“In another scenario of this example, a person is already having hardship with meeting the basic needs of his life. Still, he advises people to do good deeds and made the great vow of having all his undertakings devoted to Buddhist endeavors and benefiting living beings. In the end, he made an offering of ten dollars. Do you think that his merit is big? I firmly assert that his doing so is an erroneous act or at least he does not have the correct knowledge and views. Why? He did have the intention of making offering. Moreover, even an offering of a cent is a kind of merit. However, what he did caused loss and reduction to the real quality of his life. That is why his act is erroneous. The fact is that his life has already imposed great pressure on him and he does not even have enough resources for cultivation. Under such a circumstance, he still wanted to add more pressure to his hunger, cold, lodging, and work. He should understand a fact. Having lost the two types of resources of good fortune and wisdom would make it difficult to calm one mentally. Then how could he make a good effort to practice the dharma? Due to the lack of the resources, he will be in the midst of suffering caused by the burning desire and must always be on the run between various errands of life. It will be very hard for him to pacify his mind. Then, how could he have time to learn the dharma and cultivate toward realization? Though the amount of the offering is just ten dollars, it did cause a fundamental diminishing and reduction of his resources of good fortune. How would Buddhas and Bodhisattvas feel from taking his offering? Therefore, this kind of people is not doing the conduct of a cultivator and will not be able to learn great dharma. Then, what should this kind of people do in order to learn great dharma? The answer is that anyone in this category simply does not need to offer money as part of cultivation and should just let Buddhas and Bodhisattvas not be worried and not be distracted away from the joy of Buddha-dharma. As long as he or she is cultivating sincerely, praising Buddha-dharma, doing no evil, and advising people to do good deeds, he or she is making the biggest merit and virtue. That will be all the offering he or she needs to present. Consequently, he or she will be able to learn great dharma!”
“Therefore, there is no standard number to determine the amount of money to be offered to Buddhist endeavors. Thus, the important condition on whether one can learn great dharma or not is to see whether he is sincere or just pretending to be sincere, whether he is doing what he can or just fulfilling a superficial formality, whether he does kind deeds or evil acts, and whether he benefits living beings or deceives and harms living beings!”
“Anathapindika used the gold in his thirteenth gold-storing warehouse as an offering to make gold bricks to cover the ground of Jetavana Vihara. Although he only offered one warehouse of gold and still kept the gold in his more than ten other warehouses, the Buddha said that he had truly created very great merit and virtue that would not be exhausted even after millions of eons. On the other hand, a baby presents a grab of sand in his palm as offering to the Buddha is also planting the seeds of merit and virtue.”
“If a person has a sufficient and inexhaustible amount of money but has the mentality of dealing with Boddhas and Bodhisattvas with a superficial formality and does not even offer or donate toward Buddhist endeavors, even though he verbally claims to be very pious, in reality he is just deceiving himself without being aware of doing so. This kind of people will meet with impermanence someday and still will not be able to bring any of his money after death. At that time, all his wealth will not have anything to do with him. What is even scarier is that there is no hotel or food and boarding during the stage of bardo. He would be empty-handed and in extreme loneliness! Did he even think about this kind of situation? This kind of people not only will not be able to learn great dharma but also will have difficulty to get any benefit from learning small dharma! This is because the yidam who teaches the dharma can see completely what is in the person’s mind. Being financially strong but not supporting Buddhist endeavors, not providing relief and assistance to others, and not making an effort to learn the true Buddha-dharma to benefit living beings, could this kind of people unselfishly benefit living beings after attaining accomplishment and liberation? Could such people become good holy and virtuous ones? Do they naturally have a virtuous character? There is no book telling such a story in bookstores! That is why such a person will not be able to learn great dharma and can hardly get any benefit from holy dharma.”
“With regard to the issue of making offerings a question that requires particular attention is who the recipient of the offering is. Depending on whom the recipient of the offering is, the consequence can vary from building boundless merit and virtue to creating unlimited sin and impediment. If the offering is made to a false master or a master who has the authentic lineage but whose conduct and teaching are based on evil knowledge and deviated views, the offering not only does not have merit, but also can bring sinful karma to the donor.”
“Take building a temple for example. If this temple does not have a holy monk, does not have true Buddha-dharma, and only has evil teachings that explain sutras and commentaries with deviated views and erroneous theories, then people who made offerings toward building the temple not only do not have merit but also will meet with sins and dark karmas! This is because establishing and providing a site of evil to let evildoers have a place to deceive people is assisting evildoers to harm living beings, protecting evil and damaging goodness, and confusing and misleading living beings’ good roots. Doing so is extremely sinful and vicious.”
“Conversely, an offering made to a temple with a great holy and virtuous one who is a Buddha or Bodhisattva or a great holy and virtuous one teaching the dharma with correct views and true Buddha-dharma is merit and virtue. Why should one make offering to and support temples led by great holy and virtuous ones who are Buddhas or Bodhisattvas or great holy and virtuous ones? This is because one who sincerely makes offering to great holy and virtuous ones is a person who truly wants to attain accomplishment. Only people who truly want to attain accomplishment will truly engage in self-cultivation. Using the 128 views to measure and detect, truth and the original nature of correctness or evil will be revealed. Following the reality and relying on reason to make offering, donate, and cultivate, any great dharma can be learned. Otherwise, one will not be able to learn even small dharma. One thing must be clearly known. Buddha-dharma cannot be exchanged with pretended sincerity. It must be obtained by real sincerity and true cultivation. A false mentality can deceive people, but cannot deceive Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, and the yidam of the dharma one is practicing!!!”
“Here, I am just explaining to you all the truth of Buddha-dharma. Regarding myself, I do not accept offerings. I said this many times in the recorded dharma lessons already. I will not say much on that today. In general, no matter how much or how little the money is, I will not accept any. I am just telling you a correct view! Without telling you clearly, you will not know the truth that has the correct answer. I pray for the early opening of your temple, so that extremely great holy and virtuous ones and great holy and virtuous ones can publicize and advocate the true dharma of Tathagata to benefit and broadly save living beings.”
In the above, we, UIWBAH, used the true dharma of Tathagata expounded by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III to answer the questions raised by people, to let people achieve the correct understanding. Some people may have this kind of doubt: In this world, it is generally true that every great rinpoche and every great dharma master labels themselves as possessing the true dharma of Tathagata. In the end, who really possesses the true dharma of Tathagata?
We reply clearly here. UIWBAH is not going to comment on whether other rinpoches and dharma masters possess the true dharma of Tathagata or not. However, UIWBAH must state that our Buddhism is the true dharma of Tathagata! We learn the teaching and the dharma of H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III and Sakyamuni Buddha. Moreover, there also exists the highest supreme dharma of Tathagata! We just mention a few points here for you to look into. You will then understand clearly.
You should read clearly the parts of the Supreme and Unsurpassable Mahamudra of Liberation published on the internet, that include the teaching of the cultivation of Contemplating the Magnificence of Perfect Prerequisite Oceanic Mind Essence and the Most Magnificent Bodhi Dakini Oceanic Mind Essence. Then, you should study the 128 views. In comparison to the evil teachings by others, you will know that we, UIWBAH, are practicing the correct dharma from the true dharma of Tathagata. Just use the accomplishments mentioned in the book of the Supreme Precious Voice of Good Fortune as examples, who else are able to do that?
You can also go to the website of the Office of H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III to read and get yourself familiar with the public announcements and explanations published there. You will see who really possess the true dharma of Tathagata, who are truly benefiting and saving living beings, and also who are swindlers and evil masters. All facts can be seen easily by a glance!
In addition, let’s not mention that we, UIWBAH, dare to issue a document stating that we will definitely invoke Buddhas to bestow genuine and precious nectars from the empty sky. Which dharma king or great dharma master in the world dares to make such declaration? Without really possessing the true dharma of Tathagata, who dare to make such a statement?
Let’s not mention the fact that we have countlessly many holy facts and holy objects manifesting the true Buddha-dharma. Let’s not mention that H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III is at the acme of perfect proficiency of both exoteric Buddhism and esoteric Buddhism and perfect mastery of the Five Vidyas and there has been no second person who had such accomplishments within the history of Buddhism of several thousand years. The only example we mention here is that, within the last several thousand years, only H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III let people see in person the actual happening of turning the clock of aging back and restoring a youthful appearance. There has never been any famous figure of Buddhism who is able to do so. Do we need to expound and advocate what the true dharma of Tathagata is over and over again?
We, UIWBAH, respectfully hope that you all can have such reward of good fortune and magnificent karmic condition, so you can, under the circumstance of living peacefully without difficulty and having extra money, make a little donation as your effort toward purchasing a temple of true Buddha-dharma. This merit is holy and pure. Your offering will not be used on non-Buddhist matters. We hereby swear to All Buddhas and Bodhisattvas:
The fund raised by UIWBAH from people for purchasing the temple will be used entirely in purchasing the temple, making Buddha statues, setting up the mandala, holding dharma assemblies, and other Buddhist affairs. If we commit any violation, we shall meet with ferocious retributions and descend into the hell realm!
Regarding the use of the fund, the holy and virtuous ones and managerial staff of UIWBAH are also cultivators who piously benefiting the masses and who dare to take their oaths toward Buddhas and Bodhisattvas publicly in the world.
You all can have the confidence to establish your merit and virtue. To those who established the merit and virtue of making offering, we will truthfully report the names to extremely great holy and virtuous ones, great holy and virtuous ones as well as Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, so as to let you receive the corresponding reward of good fortune and affinity to the dharma. After the temple is purchased, those who made big offerings to establish great merit will definitely be present in front of the dharma bowl of receiving nectars to see Buddha-bestowed nectars in person, receive initiation, and learn great dharma. This is because the law of cause and effect never fails!
Of course, talking about invoking Buddhas to bestow nectars, we are far from possessing the qualification of inviting Buddhas. However, H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III already said, “I am just a humble one. I do not have the ability of inviting Buddhas to bestow nectars. You should respectfully invite extremely great holy and virtuous ones and great holy and virtuous ones to pray together, and chant the Heart Sutra, the Diamond Sutra, and scriptures of true Buddha-dharma. There is no need to chant any mysterious mantras. As long as you are truly sincere, I believe that Buddhas will be moved.”
We will present our sincere gratitude toward Buddhas and Bodhisattvas and respectfully invite extremely great holy and virtuous ones and great holy and virtuous ones. The holy and pure mind practice of extremely great holy and virtuous ones will definitely invite Buddhas to bestow genuine and precious nectars from the empty sky. Buddhas are not affected by evil mantras and do not accept the invitation of mantras of words. Buddhas have boundlessly great compassion and always benefit living beings. By invoking Buddhas using our genuine gratitude, our wish will be fulfilled.
This announcement is hereby made to the public.
United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters (seal)
February 25, 2013
Attachment: Notice of fund-raising for purchasing a temple from the United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters
United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters
Notice of Fund-Raising for Purchasing a Temple
The United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters (UIWBAH) is a non-profit Buddhist organization established in the United States and with its mission toward the entire world. This organization propagates Buddha-dharma with purely correct knowledge and views. Among Buddhist organizations in the world, this organization is the strongest in the teaching of Buddhism, the study of Buddhism, and Buddha-dharma. It respectfully invited and appointed masters of all classes of qualifications including extremely holy and virtuous ones, great holy and virtuous ones, and holy and virtuous ones to propagate Buddha-dharma. It is also the only organization in the world that possesses such strengths and, therefore, is truly the top-notch Buddhist organization in the world. This organization has carried out very many Buddhist undertakings for living beings. Moreover, during the many years since its establishment, the chairman and vice chairman of this organization as well as the respectfully invited and appointed extremely holy and virtuous ones, great holy and virtuous ones, and holy and virtuous ones have never spent even a cent of money of UIWBAH. They have always been following the teaching of H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III and serving living beings for free.
Now, the situation is that Buddhist disciples generally feel that it is very difficult to receive higher initiations and transmission of Buddha-dharma. We must inform you all that this is mainly due to the fact that there is no regular temple that can meet the stipulation of the dharma and the karmic conditions for conferring imitations and transmitting Buddha-dharma in Los Angeles. Recently, the United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters decided to buy a temple that meets the stipulation of the dharma to facilitate Buddhist disciples’ learning the dharma and receiving initiations. Based on survey and investigation, this place meets both the stipulation of the dharma and the karmic conditions. Therefore, we, the United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters, are determined to make an effort to purchase this place for benefiting living beings, so as to let you all learn higher Buddha-dharma early. Thus, we hope that you can donate some money toward the purchase of this temple. However, you must remember that, if you have hardship in your life, please be sure not to donate!
You all can have the confidence that this fund-raising is for the purpose specified above. All funds raised will be used on the temple and on the matters of Buddha-dharma. Not even a cent will be used by anyone for private use. Receipts will be issued for your donations.
As to your kind intentions and merits, we will definitely present and report them to all Buddhas and Bodhisattvas!
United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters (seal)
Chairman: Gar Tongstan (signature)
February 19, 2013
The following are ways of making donations:
1. Direct wiring:
Account Name: United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters (or U. I. W. B. A. H.)
Account Number: 325002080428
Bank Name: Bank of America
Routing Number (ABA): 026009593
Swift Address: BOFAUS3N
Bank Address: 100 West 33rd Street, New York, NY 10001, USA
2. Checks, money orders, cashier’s checks, or traveler’s checks: Please make payable to United International World Buddhism Association Headquarters (or U. I. W. B. A. H.)
660 Monterey Pass Road #100
Monterey Park, CA 91754