Practitioner, take Care. A lay Buddhist practitioner’s perspective.
It is imperative to go slow, dig deep and investigate hard into our own hearts when we carry out a vendetta mission against a recognized practitioner like Grandmaster Lu. It does not matter that we ourselves do not recognize him as a true practitioner, but the others do. It’s the same as most of us do not recognize other people’s faith to the level we want to as practitioners, but we must learn to respect the people.
I come from a background of non-Buddhist family, brought up in schools of Christian faith and secular ones. As a young child recognized I wanted to be of instinctively good heart type of person, simple but this had led me to a journey of the middle path I want to travel as a Buddhist practitioner. With only schools’ history lessons as my guide, I did recognize quite early my linkages to Buddha Sakyamuni’s teaching: heart was instinctively receptive, heart softens to his name, heart softens on the very mention of Guru, Buddha, Dharma or Sangha. At the same time as a child, I had wished there would be harmony amongst the main religions in this world. In late teens had strong desire to find my guru of this lifetime; with the things I do and have faith in, I also realized I had Tibetan practice linkages.
The first letter I wrote to Grandmaster Lu was that I wanted to take refuge in him as my guru. I now think it was not a pleasant letter but it was the truth, I said it was because he was my husband’s guru and as a Buddhist wife, I will take my husband’s guru choice. I think some of us like myself of Mahayana background are rather egoistic – so eager to save the world, to protect the Dharma, that sometimes we forget Buddha Sakyamuni’s instruction to internalize and meditate on own self nature. At that time when I chose take refuge in my guru, I recognized I needed to do some new learning, and although not fully respecting Grandmaster Lu at that time because I did not “know” him, I had faith in my linkages to Buddha, Dharma and the Dharma Protectors.
It has been a while, from early twenties to now fifty years old. What have I learnt? Maybe you think nothing much, but actually heaps in term of my personal practice. I’ve experienced that if you have faith, when your guru empowers you on a Dharma or teaching, you can actually actualize it. This is what Grandmaster Lu has done for me when he actualized his practice. But most importantly for me, is that now the heart softens on his name and can now instinctively with no recall effort, chant his mantra. I have come to love my guru of Tao, Mahayana and Tantrayana.
Know that Grandmaster Lu did not have to achieve anything for me to respect him as my guru. He, by his own nature had instinctively internalized practices from 3 main lineages. I recalled my hopes as a child, this was what I recognized I lacked, the respect for Tao. This was how I knew that when I first took refuge in him, I already gained from him and going further will not remove that. I have worked very hard to overcome my own biased views to respect the Tao and had come to love my guru for himself. Know that this is normal for a lay practitioner – success in cultivating positive outflow is better, definitely not negative ones. When you trample on Grandmaster Lu, you trample on my heart. And for me, it also means you trample on Buddha Sakyamuni because you lacked respect for this Buddha’s teaching to believe that that it could form a link such that a layperson like me can draw faith from, to which has led me to take refuge in Grandmaster Lu. I am most indebted to Grandmaster Lu for showing me the Buddha’s way, a living example of the truth in Buddha Sakyamuni’s teachings. And this is just my view, his rather mundane Chinese-illiterate disciple, out of so many disciples of vigor and firm dispositions.
If I were a Buddhist practitioner and I can’t stop outflows of such hatred, I would look to find refuge in Sangha who are well known for high morals, who has never spoken ill of a single person, this will help me practice. For if I was this practitioner, I would be afraid of straying from the middle path. I would find all means to curb my poor behavior, better still if can practice until instinctively there is no such behaviour. I will try to find in myself why this outflow can’t stop, whether due to illusions from ego or past karmic link. Draw strength from own past practice linkages. Internalize the Sutra teachings. Draw strength from Sangha. Have faith in our Dharmapalas. Have faith in Sakyamuni Buddha. Have faith in own Buddha nature. My choice, whichever one I drew my strength from when I first wanted to become a practitioner. Know that it is not normal to be vindictive, know that something is wrong, pull back to own roots. Focus practice on positives, repent on negatives, move on.
Practitioner, take Care. Do not carry out a vendetta on people’s Guru. When we do that, we belittle our own practice. Know that when you do that to my Guru, you belittle my faith, my choice, my practice.