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How to Find God - P2/2 October 15,1989 Santa Cruz, California, USA    
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Is enlightenment simply realizing that I'm enlightened?



No. You have to be enlightened. “Enlightened” has its significance of its own. “Enlightened” means light, have light - en-light. You have the light within yourself. And when it is “enlight-ed,” then you are enlightened.


So “enlightened” means you see the Light of God or you hear the Words from God. The Words from God is not in the human language. It is in a different language, the inner Voice.



* How can my practice of Quan Yin help alleviate the violence overtaking the world? I ask this because I see history has been increasingly more violent, even though I do meditate already. I ask this maybe because I need more faith and more global evidence of improvement. Thank you.



Do you practice Quan Yin Method? Who asked this question, may I ask please? What kind of method do you practice? Meditate on breath, on mantra? You see,it's better that you're devoted to one technique that you like most.


Then you get the result quicker in the end and your faith is more firm. I think at the moment you are still searching. You just try, but you are not sure and you have not met the technique that brings calm and peace and faith into your heart.


So you may try the Quan Yin technique. It's truly a wonder, compared to the others. I dare not say other techniques are not good,no. It's just sometimes it's not suitable for you. For me,the Quan Yin is the best,the fastest, and also the Buddha says so.


The Buddha says it's the fastest. What I mean is if we have not been in contact with the Light and Sound of God within, no matter with what technique you use, if it has not brought you to that bridge of Light, then you will still be in doubt.


Then you are not yet secured of God's salvation. All right? But,actually,it's sad. Not many people will listen to me; not many people listen to Jesus,and not many listen to Buddha either. You see that?


That's how we have the world's problems. But we must try. It's better than no one ever practice. To have a few lights on the street is better than no light at all. To have a dim light on the highway is better than no light at all.


If no one ever practices Quan Yin Method, no one at all in this world is enlightened and become virtuous and have firm faith in God in order to infect others with fragrant faith, then the world will become hell.


At least it stayed as it is now. It's still livable,bearable, in some parts of the world. If there are no one practicing, no one becoming like Ramakrishna, Yogananda,etc.,and no one like their followers,then the world has long become hell. So we are happy that it hasn't become hell.


The Quan Yin Method will bring peace into your own mind. If it does not bring peace into the whole world, at least into your own. Begin with us. Begin with each of us.



* How does one protect oneself and their children from violent people?



Violent people? Pray to God,and pray to your living master. Whomever your living master is, put the children into his or her hands. Give them initiation, give them holy teaching, virtuous way of living, and God will protect them.

Someone asked about the practice of the Quan Yin Method does it have any impact on world peace? I said that even if it does not affect world peace, at least it has an impact on your own peace.


Each one of us has to begin with ourselves. We must take care of the family, rule the country,then pacify the world,right? There was a woman who kept meditating but didn't have any results. I said that maybe the other methods of meditation were not suitable for her.


That was why she was still hesitant, still had doubts and hadn't found the Buddha Nature yet. Therefore,she can change to something different, change to another method of meditation.


And I said that,even if we see that currently the world is not in peace, at least it has not become hell. Understand? If it were not for a few who have been practicing,like the ones I've just mentioned, then the world would have become hell a long time ago.


At least the world today is half hell,half Heaven. In some parts of the world,it's still livable,in some parts it's not comfortable, but at least it's not entirely all hell. For example,having a few lights on the street is still better than having no light,understand? It's better than complete darkness.


Therefore,when we practice spiritually,we shouldn't pay attention to other people, we shouldn't look at the world. We light a light; a small light is better than no light.



* When I sit to meditate for hours every morning, I come into the presence of peace. But when I run around in the world,I lose it. And 'm told you must be awake when you go around, and I can't; only when I sit. Should I then be a monk or wait to be awakened?


It's up to you. It's up to you. You see,we could not have peace 24 hours except you are in such a state,like Buddha. But then,you have peace, but then you don't have peace.


You have peace in the upper level of your consciousness, and you do not have peace when you're dealing with people. But then,at that moment, even then your peace or “unpeacefulness” is of an impermanent nature.


You are permanently peaceful in Nirvana (the highest paradise). But when you are in the world,you must have the ups and downs, and that's nature, and that's natural.


Also,if you want to become a monk or a nun, it's all right. Find out your own tendency. It is also praiseworthy, whomever forsakes all the world for God's sake. That's very noble, and very few persons can do that,I'm sorry to say. They are living God. We could not even forsake…


There is a wife of Ramakrishna - they are married, but just like friends - she says,“People cannot even part with an old cup. How could they forsake the world?” So those who can forsake the world for God's sake are holy. So find out what you want to be and settle down with your own peace.


Anyhow,if we meditate and we find peace, that is a good result. That means you have succeed in your meditation. But then,when you run around the world you have a little bit of distraction and disturbance, and that's all right also. Don't let that disturb you. It's better than all day, evenin meditation, and you have no peace. Understand?


It's just like we eat in the morning and we feel very full and satisfied, and after we work, we feel hungry again, but that's all right. Then go back and eat again. That's how you appreciate your food.


That's how you appreciate your meditation. No problem. You want to be in the world, then be in the world; accept both peace and turmoil. You want to be a monk, then be a real monk, dedicate to God and to the service of mankind.


You see,if you are having an unselfish motive,wanting to be a monk for God, for the serving of all the people, and that's praiseworthy. No one will condemn this kind of ideal. Because that's a very unselfish motive, very noble idea.


Someone asked that when he sat in meditation, he felt very peaceful. Then when he go outside, he felt distracted again. I said it's all right. It's just like after we have eaten and then we go to work and get hungry again. When we are hungry, then we go home and eat again. That way we appreciate the food.


Therefore, when we meditate and feel peaceful, it's good It's better than meditating and having no peace It's just like we eat a little and we go to work. We meditate a little to be peaceful,then the whole day we can so-called "cope," and deal with the challenges of the world.



That man asked if he could become a monk. I said,“of course ” Being a monk is a very noble ideal. Not many people can forsake everything in the world, without any attachments, to serve sentient beings or to serve the noble ideals of God.



Those individuals are really noble. Not too many people can be like that. Because there was a teacher in India who said, "Normally people cannot even part with an old cup,let alone the whole world." So those people who can forsake the world to serve humankind, to serve the public, are worthy of our praise, worthy of our support and respect.


Thus, from ancient times, everyone respects monks and nuns,right? We must have such noble ideal. If we cannot do it and see that others can do it, then we must respect them



* What is the Kingdom of God and how do I find it?



I will show you at the time of initiation. It's hard to speak of such glorious things; but I can show you. You see, the Kingdom of God includes peace,harmony, wisdom,power, compassion,love. If you have the Kingdom of God, you have everything that you ever,or never ever, desire for.


“Seek you first the Kingdom of God,and all these things shall be added unto you.” When I was a householder, I had a good husband. I had money, I had position, and all the Aulacese (Vietnamese) refugees also loved me, because I'd write poems, I'd write things, I helped them, rendered service to them - about many thousands of people.


Tens of thousands of people,not just a few. They all knew me. I was then enough satisfied as far as worldly satisfaction goes. But now I became enlightened. When you are enlightened,this is another different thing. You have thousands, millions of properties.


You have all kinds of visible,invisible properties. People force you with money; I have to refuse. I had to refuse the money which comes unclean. Also,I earn my own money. And before that I worked ten hours a day and I earned how much,you know? You know how much you can earn working 10 hours a day,except you are in a great business.


So all these things are God-given to me in order to serve you, so that I can give you free initiation, free booklets, free advertisement,etc. All this I did not desire. God forced me to have it. You understand?


But I work very hard. I didn't expect that much money. I just give out,whoever; give how much, it doesn't matter. So all the benefit you get,however much, is all pure, is all from God, is all from the same belief.

Somebody asked: What is the Kingdom of God? I said that this I cannot describe,but at the time of initiation,you may see it. After we have discovered the Kingdom of God, we will have everything. For example,before when I was not enlightened,when I had not yet discovered the Kingdom of God, a lot of times I could not help other people because I did not have the money.


Now that I do handicrafts,people compete with each other to buy my handicrafts. I make a lot of money. And thanks to that money,I can travel, buy air tickets, publish free publications for people to learn about virtues and morality and to give free initiation,etc. All this comes from God,from the Buddha.


It's not that I can have these things just because I want them. Sometimes I don't want them,but they still leave them in front of my door. In the past,I could not make enough money to serve others.


Now,I can have whatever I want. When we sincerely want to find God and Buddha, then God and Buddha will support us.



* When your awakened eye sees the world, do you see there no difference between good and evil because it is all divine?



Yes,yes. But then if the tiger comes,I will run away. There is a difference between my seeing and the tigers' seeing. Understand? I know he is good, but he doesn't. Just like I know you are the Buddha, but you do not. I know you are God, but you do not.


That's why you have to know it yourself. I could not help you to know it. It doesn't help you that I know. That's a regrettable thing.

A person asked that when I became enlightened, did I see that there was no difference between good and evil,that there is no bad people, no good people,that there is no good or evil, and everything is one? I said,yes,that is correct, everything has Buddha Nature. But if a tiger comes, I would run immediately, because I know he is a Buddha but he does not know that he is a Buddha,understand?

It's just like I know you are Buddha, but you don't know you are Buddha,so you have to know it yourself. I cannot help you. It's not important to you that I am enlightened. Only if you want it then I can help you to become enlightened. Understand?



* How can I feel peace in the present when I remember my sins of the past?



You see,you have to clean away the sin. You do that through repentance, sincere change of the way of life,or through a compassionate master who can help you to burn away all the past sins, the original sins,so that you may not be able to remember again.


It wouldn't bother you again. You'll feel clean like a baby. That's how we say in the Bible,“Except you become a child again, you cannot enter the Kingdom of God.” We are burdened with guilt,so we cannot enter the Kingdom of God, we cannot see God.


So through the grace of an enlightened master, the sins,the guilt-burden, will be lifted away and burned out. Then we feel innocent, we feel good again. Even though we do know we have done something bad in the past,but we do not feel burdened with it; we forgive ourselves.


We know God is merciful then. We do know it, completely. We do feel it, not just hearing. That is the difference. If you have repented very sincerely, then you feel the lifting.


Or if you change your way of life,like last life, or maybe in the past you have done some bad deed,like taking drugs or cheating people, or killing someone, now pray to God, say,“Please,forgive me. I know it was wrong, I'll never do it again,” and that's enough.


God will forgive you. But if that doesn't help you,then you must seek the compassion of a master who can help you to feel fresh and innocent again. All right?

A person asked: How can we experience bliss in the present if we believed that we have sinned in the past?


So I said that we must sincerely repent,praying to God,to Buddha, saying,"I know that those things were wrong. I will never do them again. I will only do good deeds instead of bad.”


Then God and the Buddha will forgive us immediately. But if we feel that God and Buddha have not forgiven us, if we still feel burdened with guilt in our soul, then we have to find a compassionate master who has the power to burn away our feelings of guilt.


They use their wisdom and compassionate power to get rid of it, to burn away our sins. Then we will feel innocent like a child, like an infant; we won't feel guilty anymore. Like that,it's good.



* Do you believe in the Christian God, Buddha,Jesus,the Tao? Or do you simply believe in you? Are you God? Is God universal or personal,or both? I cannot answer these questions,I'm lost.



I believe in the Christian God, I believe in Buddha, I believe in the Tao, I believe in myself. Because I'm also God, or at least a part of God.


There is no doubt there is a God. God is both personal and impersonal; God is both with form and without form. God is without form, but if God desires form, makes the form.


If you want to see God in a kind of form, God will appear in a kind of form in order to be tangible, so we may see God.

A person asked if I believe in God,Buddha, Jesus,in the Tao, you know, Lao Tzu, or do I believe in myself? Is God a being with or without form?


What is God like? I said God is with and without form. If God wants to have a form to let us see Hirm, then Hes will appear in some kind of form. Our Buddha Nature is usually invisible, but if Hes wants us to see Hirm,then Hes will appear like Shakyamuni Buddha, like Quan Yin Bodhisattva or Amitabha Buddha for us to see.


Hes can appear as a brilliant light for us to see, or as melodious sounds for us to hear, to uplift our soul. Otherwise,if everything is invisible,then we wouldn't know,right? We are human beings, not the Buddha.


If everything is invisible, then how can we believe it? However,I believe in both the visible and invisible, and I also believe in myself,because I also came from God and Buddha. I came from God and Buddha, at least a part of God and Buddha.



* What is,exactly, the method of immediate enlightenment?



That is an invisible power within you,which will be opened and then you get enlightened. It's not a method at all actually. Well,you can say it is an invisible method which a master will open the invisible power, treasure,within you and leave you in peace forever and liberation forever.


It's not a method, it is a power. It is the God within you who accepts to be awakened and comes for an expert to help. Just like Jesus, when he was on Earth, even though he was a son of God he had to go through different trainings and learn with different teachers, and even get baptized by John the Baptist.


He said, “Let the law be done.” So it isn't the water that cleansed Jesus or baptized him; it is God within him that accepts the awakening, that allows the awakening process to happen.


Once you are willing to get initiation,that means the dormant God within you wants to be awake,accepts, allows the awakening. Understand that? It's you yourself who allow the awakening. I only trigger the process. I only light the Light which is within the wood. Understand?

A person asked: What is initiation? What is the method of immediate enlightenment?



I said that this is not really a method, but if I don't say “method,” then ordinary people would not understand. If we say there is no method, then no one would come, so I have to temporarily call it a “method”; But actually, it's not a method.


If we want to, we can say that it is an invisible method. But,in fact,it is our own Buddha Nature within accepts; our Buddha Nature accepts, “At this moment, I want to be enlightened.


Now I want to wake up to help the world, to help myself.” Usually the Buddha Nature is sleeping,but when we accept to get initiation, that is when our Buddha Nature wakes up.


In other words,it accepts the awakening and no longer desires to sleep. It wants to wake up to save sentient beings. That means we save ourselves. That's why the Buddha said sentient beings save themselves; the Buddha does not save them.


The Buddha or the master is only someone who presses the button, understand? The electricity is already there. Just like a match has fire within it. We just strike it, then there is fire. If I strike this, there's no fire,right?


The fire is already there; a person only strikes it to help it burn, understand? The master only helps us to lift our Buddha from his slumber, wash his face,saying, "Get up and work! You sleep too much. You have been sleeping for many thousands of years!” Understand?


Therefore, there is no method. We already have the Buddha; there's no need for a method. The Buddha is sleeping. Now someone knows how to wake him up, throws water on his face, and he wakes up.


That's all. When we're asleep, we cannot throw water on ourselves,understand? So there must be someone who throws water on us to wake us up; that is called a master. The master has the right to throw water.



I said,just like when you are sleeping,you cannot wake up yourself; somebody else who knows you sleep too deep,he gets the water and throws into your face and then tells you, “Wake up,you're lazy! Wake up and help yourself and help people. You sleep in there and then dreaming about people beating you. What for? Get up! Get up!”


That is the work of the Buddhaor the master: throw water on your face and tell your Buddha to get up, tell the Christ within you to wake up. And you allow that to happen. Or you can go back to sleep again, that's all right,too.



* Is the Quan Yin Method the method to contemplate on the Sound?



Yes,yes.



* Is it the method mentioned in the Surangama Sutra or is it the secret method which was given to you by the Quan Yin Bodhisattva during meditation or in a vision?



It was also taught during meditation,and it is exactly the method which the Quan Yin Bodhisattva taught. It is also the same method which is mentioned in the Surangama Sutra.

This is an ancient method. It is the method of contemplation on the Sound.



* How can we concentrate and not let our mind wander during meditation? Is it correct that during meditation,we have to kill the Buddha or the devil when we see one,just like what the sutra mentioned?



If you can see him then you can kill him,but it's not with certainty that you can see the devil, not to mention killing him. If you don't want to wander during meditation, when you see the Buddha or devil,try not to feel excited or feel afraid but continue to concentrate and recite the Buddha's name,or single-mindedly focus on your method.


Then your mind won't wander. Understand? And during meditation, or when you're not in meditation,you must keep your thought, speech,and action pure. You must keep a vegetarian diet as much as you can.


Do good deeds and avoid bad actions. With a good deed, you do right it away. With a bad action, you avoid it immediately. Your mind should always be focused on and remember God and all the Buddhas, the highest beings. Don't think about fame and profit.


Don't think that you are practicing to obtain magical powers, that you are practicing in order to be rich.


Those thoughts will invite the devils to come. Understand? If your thoughts are pure, the devils will run away; they won't come and wait for you to kill them, right?


When you see the Buddha or the devil, don't be afraid. Just recite the Buddha's name. Because you don't have a teacher to teach you what is real and what is false, therefore,it is better not to pay attention to it.


But if you practice the method, I will show you how to distinguish between what is real and what is false. But if you don't practice the Quan Yin Method, then don't think about what is real and what is false.


Then there wouldn't be any problem. However,if you meet a real Buddha,then you feel very relaxed, because his appearance is very loving and compassionate. But seeing a devil is different: he is very ferocious and forces you to do bad things,to eat meat and drink wine. Then you know it is a devil.



* How do we know ourselves and forgive those who have caused us to suffer?



This ideal is very good. Try to pray to God and the Buddha to help you to attain this level. But oftentimes, there are people who are unreasonable,making us suffer for no reason, so we have to find a way to wake them up a little.


We just can't bow our head in acceptance all the time. We care for them,but we must show them in all seriousness that whatever he or she did was not right. Understand?


We just can't always bow our heads like that and end up causing harm to ourselves and to them. We have to react according to the situation. We truly love others and are peaceful,but we should know how to act with dignity so that they can treat us with respect.


Otherwise,if we always bow our heads to them like a doormat,then they continue to step on us. Understand? Being compassionate doesn't mean that we should be foolish; compassion has to go hand in hand with wisdom.



* How can we practice when we are so busy?



You practice whenever you have the time. Recite the Buddha's name while you're working.



* If we don't eat vegetarian, then when we die, can we go to Nirvana (the highest paradise), or will we be born as a lowly being?



If you are firm in your faith,then it's possible. Or,when you meet a high level practitioner who is very enlightened and you believe in him, that individual, that living Buddha,and you ask for his help, then when you die, that Buddha will come and save you; otherwise, when we eat meat, it's very difficult to be liberated,understand?


That heavy bad karma (retribution) will pull you down. But if there is a living Buddha that you can believe in,and ask for his help, then you can be saved.


* When does the Assembly of Dragons and Fairies start? When will Maitreya Buddha reincarnate,and where?



That was a long time ago. He wouldn't come down when this world is not peaceful. Only when everyone practices spirituality and becomes virtuous,keeps a vegetarian diet and recites the Buddha's name will the Buddha come down.


Now,if he comes down, he can't teach us because we're too stubborn, and he might be incarcerated,harmed. This world is really dangerous. Not many Buddhas come down.


None dare to come. If you don't believe me, then go up there and ask if any of them dares to come down. One will come down once in a while. They're frightened. They come down, see that it's no use, get more karma (retribution),and even get harmed.



* Why is the relationship between a male master and a female student of a violating nature? Maybe the person who asked the question would like to…



I do not understand why. Why,if you worship a male master,how is it violating nature?



* It seems that in the yoga discipline, that the emphasis is on abandoning the ego, and very male oriented, and I think that women and men have different ego boundaries. Because women give birth and…



No,no,don't go so far. What did you mean by this,by “if a female disciple has a male master”? How would that violate nature? No.



* There's a book that was written by Irena Tweedie who had a Sufi master, and she went to through a lot of deprivation and almost died in the process of her…



Seeking of the truth,yes.



* And there's also a Tibetan monk concerned about women dying in yoga discipline, that it's very physically detrimental,and this is my question about it.



Then don't go near. Don't go near this system. In our system, nobody dies, nobody will be deprived of attention and love. Everyone is equal, be it male or female. No one ever dies,and no danger in this path.


Everyone gets enlightenment at the first flash and will always progress. No one dies,no danger, no such a complicated question. So please,don't go near such a system if you are so fearful , “I fear…I'm afraid…” Is there such thing as a female dying by male master? By neglecting? (I don't know.) Your question is not very clear.


Is it clear to you or…? It's not clear either. Something new also,yes. I think no such thing as a female cannot accept a male master or a male cannot accept a female. That's a very natural thing,so there's no other question,no? Nothing violating nature.



* I think man and woman are very different personalities…



Personality,yes, but Buddha Nature,no. Probably in such a very dangerous yoga system there might be some differentiation between male and female disciplines and way of practice.


But not in our system, where we concentrate on the Most High and we draw our own highest potential from within ourselves,which is always available in male and female: God within us.


So we do not have any complications or discrimination. We are not the yoga system that makes so much suffering to people; only elevating. You can join us and feel relaxed - no suffering!



* Why did Jesus say to Nicodemus: “You must be born again.”



That means what I have told you already: be cleansed from all guilt; be a baby again, be innocent. We can do that through a power of God that is within you when it is awakened; cleans all sin.


Because,originally, we had none. We had it through the record of our mind which always records all the bad and good. But God doesn't need this mind to judge Hirm. Therefore,when we awaken the God within us, we are reborn again.

Understand? We really feel innocent, and we feel like a big burden has fallen off from our shoulder. That I assure you. I had this experience, and all the fellow practitioners have this feeling. They know they are cleansed forever; and they know. That's how they are assured and secured of salvation.



* Which tips are helpful or necessary as preparation to enlightenment?



The most important is an enlightened teacher who can open the enlightened door for you, who can shake awake the God in you. That's the most important thing. Other disciplines,you learn from that person, like you eat vegetarian, you meditate each day, and lead a virtuous life. These things are also taught in the Bible.

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