We received from three Buddhist disciples inquires on matters of the importance of principles. The letter of inquiry is printed below:
World Buddhism Association Headquarters,
Recently, a rinpoche felt that he had lost face because other master(s) received a higher grade level from the examination than he had. For that, he made up some excuses for not wearing the dharma attire showing his grade level. He also instructed his disciples to make propaganda everywhere to say that he is the reincarnation of a great Bodhisattva. This, without doubt, is a scheme to deceive Buddhist disciples and commit fraud.
Our purpose of making inquiry to you is to obtain the correct answer. Great virtuous ones at World Buddhism Association Headquarters (WBAH) only replied that so-and-so passed the examination at a certain grade level, but the answer did not include how many points were scored in the written test of 100 problems from sutras, vinayas, and shastras (commentaries). Without that information, we are unable to judge whether this master is teaching and transmitting correct Buddha-dharma or not. In addition to inquiring about the grade level, we also need to know clearly how a master answered the problems to see whether he is a novice with evil views or an expert of Buddha-dharma. We also would like to know whether all 100 problems were answered or not and which problems were answered and which ones were not. In the reply to us, the Inquiry Division of WBAH only stated the fact that he became a candidate from the written examination, what he wrote in his document of petition, and the eventual grade level he received.
WBAH once said in the special public announcement issued on December 11, 2016 that, “98% of the masters did not score 60 points or higher in the written test.” Is it really true that so many people did not pass? If so, why are there more than 1,000 candidates? What is the score for the candidacy? Did those who passed the written test eventually receive grade levels with blue button(s) or golden button(s)? WBAH very compassionately issued many public announcements to remind everyone how to notice and guard against charlatans and evil masters, but does not state explicitly the names of evil masters. We then have to guess by ourselves. Don’t you agree that answering us this way does not seem to be very compassionate?
We ask that, in addition to the grade level of the person being inquired, the Inquiry Division also provides his/her score in the written test. Actually, the best method to prevent evil masters and charlatans is to scan and publish on the internet the hand-written answer sheets including the score of all masters. Then, everyone can easily see whether a certain master is holding the flag of Buddhism to cover his body, and in reality whether he is a charlatan or a good master. This method can truly and effectively help the great masses avoid being grabbed by the demonic palm of an evil master. In this way, any charlatan master will not be able to flee from his answer sheets in the test with his own handwriting no matter how foxy he is and how many schemes and tricks he has.
Please inform us about a phenomenon. Some people who do not cultivate themselves well received higher grade levels from the examination than those who cultivate themselves well, including some whose conduct is even worse than that of inferior people such as us and who have committed a big pile of faults and sins. Heng Sheng Rinpoche can be an example. He only does business and does not work on the correct undertaking of Buddhism. How could he have good karma or merit? But he even passed the examination at the level of Blue Button Grade 3 Plus One Black Button. We really could not figure out why.
There is another thing that we would like to ask. H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III told our master, “If you practice 100 sessions perfectly after you return, those are also holy assemblies.” Then, why did the public announcement say that the Holy Assembly of 100 Sessions has concluded?
Because this kind of situations is very serious, we ask WBAH to be sure to apply love and compassion to us, care about us, and help us who are Buddhists deluded in this evil age of five turbidities. Please reply to us.
Namo H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III!
Buddhist Disciples: Li Yunfeng, Chu Xiaorong, Zhang Kechun
(Signed and finger-stamped)
April 28, 2017
WBAH hereby reply to your inquiries through the following seven parts:
- Regarding your suggestion or method to prevent evil masters and charlatans and subdue demons, we think that it is very well said, but we cannot do that. This is because what we do is learning from Buddha to cultivate ourselves and benefiting living beings, not punishing a particular person. All must be established on the foundation of great love and great compassion. We can only provide opportunity to people to help them make progress.
It is true that some masters have impure karmas in some aspects, but they are also doing Buddhist work in another aspect. These kinds of persons just need to correct themselves once they know what they did wrong. As long as one is not an icchantika, we should let these persons have the opportunity to learn from Buddha to cultivate themselves. If we see someone who has mistakes and impure karma and then immediately publish his/her answers to the problems in the written test on sutras, vinayas, and shastras on the internet, we would have committed serious faults and sins and would have planted causes of impure karma. This is because a person who has mistakes or sins and serious impure karma definitely does not know Buddha-dharma well. Thus, it is natural that this person cannot do well in the answers to the written test! Once his answer sheets are published, the result would be just like what you said to have this person completely exposed and doomed, as if being sent to the hell realm of eighteen layers. If we can save and rescue a person who has committed faults and sins by enabling him to attain liberation through propagating Buddha-dharma and benefiting living beings, once his answer sheets in taking the test are published or the name of an evil master is published, this person would no longer have an opportunity to correct his faults and sins. On the contrary, doing so would cause people who were defrauded by him or presented offerings to him to realize that they have been deceived by him and have a desire to revenge. Therefore, this person may be sued and even imprisoned. At that time, he would not have the opportunity to listen to the recorded dharma discourses, learn from Buddha to cultivate himself, and go to the crowd of people to practice and exercise his mentality and conduct of doing good deeds. Then, wouldn’t the action against him have violated the Three Congregations of Purifying Precepts and have committed evil? We should know that H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III and the supreme leader of Buddhism Sakyamuni Buddha teach us to uphold the principle of loving compassion to save and rescue living beings rather than destroy living beings.
Furthermore, people who cultivate and learn Buddhism must command correct understanding and views and possess the ability to recognize and distinguish people and matters by themselves. Only then can one avoid stepping onto evil paths or being deceived on the way of learning from Buddha to cultivate oneself so that one can enter into true Buddha-dharma and become accomplished and liberated. Among all documents issued by WBAH, not even one requires you to guess. Rather, the purpose is to facilitate all to learn from the recorded dharma discourses expounded by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III and the public announcements how to distinguish upright or evil and gain the knowledge to recognize upright or evil phenomena in various aspects. Why did H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III expound the 128 views? Why does Buddhism have so many sutras and scriptures? Why are there many commentaries and treatises written by Bodhisattvas as well? The goal is to guide and teach you all to command the correct knowledge and raise your ability of observing and judging. It is not true that simply teaching you a mantra or teaching you to chant a Buddha’s name can elevate you to the World of Ultimate Bliss. It is impossible to ascend to the Buddha-land this way. That is why H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III expounded the dharma that is in the book Learning from Buddha. This is because evil things come from ignorance from all directions, including upper and below as well as left and right, and are of more varieties and are more numerous than the myriad of matters in daily life, and are always changing and varying. You must learn by yourself and train yourself to develop the ability to recognize and handle such matters. Only then can you be upright when you encounter something. This is not a matter of telling you so-and-so is an evil master. Moreover, if one is an evil master today and if he corrects himself a few days later, he may become a good master; or one who is a good master now may change his views into evil sometime later. Exactly because of such facts, cultivators must be taught to command the judgmental power to master the correct understanding and views. Also for the same reason, masters who passed the examination in the holy realm are selectively subject to annual reexamination.
Anyone who is not a Bodhisattva at the eighth stage (Golden Button Grade 3) or higher has the risk of receding the attained accomplishment. A great Bodhisattva definitely holds the conduct of accomplishment and can distinguish what is upright and what is evil with His own realization and state as soon as stepping into the door. Therefore He will be able to choose the correct way and avoid the evil. This is because He is a great Bodhisattva who inherently possesses the cultivated power of contemplation and illumination and thus will not mistakenly recognize and does not have to go back and forth on the path of cultivation. That is why a great Bodhisattva will not recede the attained accomplishment and does not need to be subject to the annual reexamination. Even an Arhat who is not as great as a Bodhisattva has the ability of seeing 300 years into the future and 500 years in the past. On the other hand, an ordinary master does not have the accomplishment to generate the power of contemplation and illumination and cannot determine the right direction. Therefore, one who is good in a previous period may not necessarily be good in a later period. This is because this person is an ordinary being and will travel back and forth due to the inability to see the right direction. If we draw a definitive conclusion right away to say so-and-so is an evil master or a charlatan but later he learned goodness and corrected himself to become a good master, wouldn’t you say that we behaved like ordinary beings to say that someone is bad and then change the tone shortly after by saying this person is good? Even Shariputra was once a heretic practitioner, but he later became the first-place disciple of Sakyamuni Buddha in terms of accomplishment.
There is only one kind of situations when we must publish a person’s answer sheets. That is, this person who has the status of rinpoche or dharma master and so on truly damages the true dharma of the Tathagata, slanders the Buddha and/or the sutras, and even defrauds and harms living beings. Also, this person not only does not repent and correct but also insists on continuing to do evil and damage true Buddha-dharma. That belongs to the unforgivable nature of a vicious demon of icchantika!!! Under such a circumstance, for the purpose of protecting true Buddha-dharma and protecting living beings, WBAH will immediately publish the hand-written answer sheets of these types of demons and charlatans, to let Buddhists around the world distinguish what is upright and what is evil, distinguish whether such a person has the qualification to be a master, and distinguish whether he is a true rinpoche or true dharma master or an evil master, so that people can know they have been deceived and will find other fine masters who have affinity with them to learn the dharma. Wang Zha Shang Zun said, “To demons who slander the Buddha and the sutras and do damage to the true dharma of the Tathagata, without hesitation I will let WBAH publish his answer sheets!!! Then, people can recognize his original face to avoid the possibility of a crowd of living beings being harmed by one who is evil.”
- The Shang Zun also said, “Regarding the promise that my kind Buddha Master gave you that practicing the dharma perfectly for 100 sessions at where you are is also a holy assembly, only His Holiness the Buddha has such ability to perfect your merit. I dare not make such a promise. I do not have such an ability. I could only lead the dharma assembly to practice according to the essence of the dharma and then conclude the Holy Assembly of 100 Sessions. The several of us will fulfill the holy vow we made. We have already started to perform the Initiation of Dharma Affinity with the Yidam. The yidam was invited to meet with the disciple. The yidam told the disciple receiving the initiation in person who is his yidam according to his affinity with the dharma.”
- Among all those who took the written test of 100 problems, not even one answered all problems. Everyone had his/her own selection of answering what problems and not answering what problems.
- Also, the highest possible score of the written test is 100 points. Passing means scoring 60 points or higher. The reason that the written test produced more than 1000 candidates is that WBAH set a very low bar of 20 points for achieving candidacy, which stands for the qualification of taking the examination in the holy realm. Why was the bar for candidacy set so low? You must first understand that, to answer the problems listed by WBAH, it would be very difficult for a Larampa Geshe to earn a score of between 50 to 60 points.
- As to your question asking whether those who passed the written test have grade levels of golden button(s) or blue button(s), we tell you today that those who passed the written test with scores of 60 points or higher all have grade levels of golden button(s). None of them have grade levels of blue button(s). Furthermore, some of those who received grade levels of golden button(s) did not pass (scored less than 60 points).
- Regarding the situation of the Holy Assembly of 100 Sessions, the Holy Assembly of 100 Sessions was led by Wang Zha Shang Zun and has truly concluded. This holy assembly was not presided by H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. What His Holiness the Buddha told your master represents the vow of His Holiness the Buddha. Specifically for this, we beseeched a discourse from H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. His Holiness the Buddha said, “The words I spoke will count!!! I also said that, when you practice the dharma assembly after going back, every session of the dharma assembly has to be completely recorded by video. Arrangement will be made to have people review and verify whether the dharma assembly is accomplished up to the standard. Then, I will make arrangement to have Wang Zha Shang Zun confer the initiation to you. While Wang Zha Shang Zun was leading the practice of the Holy Assembly of 100 Sessions, some masters did let their disciples begin their dharma assembly at another place. However, they only practiced a very short period and then stopped themselves. In some cases, although they did not stop, what they did is totally different from a regular session of chanting to practice the dharma according to the rules. Some masters let their disciples start the dharma assembly only after Wang Zha Shang Zun had concluded the Holy Assembly. Since Wang Zha Rinpoche had already practiced the dharma to bid farewell to the Yidam and dharma protectors of the Holy Assembly and they had already gone back, how could such dharma assembly connect to the karmic affinity? When holding this type of very serious dharma assembly, how could the practice, chanting, and singing be performed without order? Also, how could the dharma assembly be started and stopped at will? Then, where is the dignity of a holy assembly?”
- WBAH must point out the evil view expressed in your statements that some who did not cultivate themselves well attained higher grade levels than people who cultivate themselves well and that Heng Sheng Rinpoche does not work on the correct undertaking of Buddhism and lacks good karma and merit but passed the examination at the level of Blue Button Grade 3 Plus One Black Button. What you did is deliberately insulting Buddhas and Bodhisattvas by saying that They are not impartial and are selfish like ordinary beings in giving him a high grade level. You even dare to suspect that Mahamayuri Vidya Raja and Manjushri Bodhisattva commit fault for selfish purposes. You are truly pitiable! For this, WBAH beseeched H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III for a discourse. H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III said, “This is really a question of principles. You should immediately issue a public announcement. I want to question the people who denied the merit of Heng Sheng Rinpoche: How many people are you leading to listen to the dharma? How many dharma-listening centers did Heng Sheng Rinpoche establish? And how many people were led to the path of abandoning evil and promoting kindness after listening to the recorded dharma discourses? This has very big good karma and merit. Which of you established more dharma-listening centers than Heng Sheng Rinpoche? Which of you led more people to listen to the dharma than he? Protecting the dharma and establishing dharma listening centers are the top-level correct undertaking of Buddhism. The recorded dharma discourses teach people to abstain from everything that is evil and do all that is good. Very clearly, this is the good karma and merit in nurturing and transforming living beings. You saw that but showed a complete indifference. Can you even say that he does not work on the correct undertaking of Buddhism and has no good karma and merit? Just considering this merit, Heng Sheng Rinpoche surpassed all of you. You do not even have one-tenth of his merit. Just by his merit of currently leading people to listen to the dharma at an even faster speed, his grade level should be promoted. As a person who is learning Buddhism, you spend all your time to pick other people’s weakness and only talk about that. You do not see the advantages. Are you working on the correct undertaking?”
All things that WBAH does are for benefiting and facilitating living beings’ cultivation. Moreover, no person is free of mistakes and impure karma. The key is to develop the ability to correct as the goal. Even one who is at the level of Golden Button Grade 2 can either beneficially gain or suffer a loss or setback. That is why there is an annual reexamination, to remind the candidates taking the reexamination to see their problems and correct so they can make progress.
World Buddhism Association Headquarters (Seal stamped on every page)
April 29, 2017