11. The Mantra of Light
|11. The Mantra of Light
I went to visit a small lake that was at a very secluded site. There I came across a place in the middle of a forested area which offered a spacious view of the location and also shaded me from the scorching sunlight. I set my eyes upon the glittering lake and felt relaxed and carefree.
I closed my eyes and meditated in silence. Suddenly, I heard someone whispering, ''This guy is illuminating light!''
''The light is strong!''
''Will he ruin what we do here?''
''It's hard to say!''
''Let's report to Dodo!''
I opened my eyes and caught a glimpse of several kids hopping and talking under a fir tree before they disappeared in a split second. These kids were not human beings. They were little ghosts.
I stood up quietly and walked along the narrow path along the lakeside towards a nearby shop. I then asked the shop owner, ''Do people often swim here?''
''Have any accidents happened here before?''
The shop owner did not try to avoid the subject and instead replied, ''There are a few cases every year. School children love to play with water and disregard any danger. Accidents are bound to happen. The water in this lake is rather strange and there are a few areas that are quite deep actually.''
''Are there any signs warning people about this lake?''
''There are,'' the shop owner said, ''but to most school kids, it makes no difference whether there is a warning sign or not. They still swim there!''
At the lakeside, I saw several school students taking off their shirts and getting ready to enter the water. During the summer no one could resist a dip in such a fine lake.
I said nothing. After changing into my swimming trunks, I also entered the water.
The kids were splashing water towards one another, playing and pushing in their own game. Some even swam towards the deeper end of the lake. I noticed the lake appeared tranquil, but hidden beneath the surface flowed turbulent water current. The sand bed of the lake was very soft, sinking even deeper. Water weeds growing in the lake could entangle a swimmer's leg. The water closer to the shore was warmer than the water further away.
When the students were not looking, I formed a mudra with my right hand and wrote the Sanskrit syllable AH in the air and cast it in the direction of the students. I opened my divine eye.
Besides the four students swimming in the lake, I saw four little ghosts riding a wave towards the kids. But at a certain point, they were stopped by an invisible energy shield and could not proceed any further. The shield sheltered the four students, and despite many attempts, the ghosts could get no closer to the students as they had desired. In the end, the four little ghosts were exhausted and left unwillingly.
The four little ghosts darted an angry stare at me before they vanished. I returned their stare with a smirk.
The four students had fun for a while longer before they emerged from the water. I asked them, ''Was it fun?''
''We had great fun. We'll come back again!''
I said, ''Swimming is prohibited here. It's dangerous. The police have erected a warning notice!''
They rebutted, ''Didn't you just swim in the lake yourself?''
''I...'' I chuckled and could say nothing.
* * *
That night in my dream, a water ghost approached and transformed himself into a huge water snake. It was swimming in a zigzag manner around my bed, yet it could not come near me. The water ghost returned to his original form and shook his head, and out from his mouth he spat out a long strain of water weed. This water weed moved forward to wrap around my neck and tried to strangle me to death, but it stopped upon reaching my face.
The water ghost threw up gushes of water and flooded my room, attempting to drown me. Again, water filled the space around me, but not one drop of it could seep through and reach me. The water ghost vomited stinky and smelly mud and yet it could not affect me.
The water ghost realized an invisible energy field was covering the four corners of the bed, shielding me like a net of light. The bed itself was transformed into a lotus flower. I was transformed into a vajra. A net of light encircled me. The water ghost knew he had met his match and knelt down with his palms together. I asked, ''Are you Dodo?''
''Have you harmed and taken many lives?''
''I'm ashamed of myself!''
''Why did you do it?''
Dodo replied, ''So we have a chance at reincarnating to a better state.''
I asked, ''How did you die?''
''I committed suicide.''
''Why didn't you take up spiritual cultivation?''
''I had no teacher to teach me. If I can follow you, I would achieve something.'' Dodo was curious and asked, ''How come there is a glow around you and that you're surrounded by a net of light?''
I answered him, ''This radiance and net of light is a result of my cultivation of the Mantra of Light. If you promise not to harm any more lives, I will transmit the Mantra of Light to you and you will be liberated together with your other little ghostly friends. The sutra states that if any sentient being commits the Ten Evil Deeds, the Five Deadly Sins and upon his death descends to the lower realms, reciting this mantra one hundred and eight times will allow the deceased to ascend to the Western Paradise of Ultimate Bliss. It also states that if any sentient being listens to this mantra for two, three or seven times, all his karmic hindrances will be eradicated.''
The water ghost Dodo was thrilled to hear this and immediately took refuge and requested the transmission of this mantra.
I recited: ''[transliteration:] Om, a-mo-ga, huai-lu-jia-na, ma-ha-mu-de-la, ma-ne-ba-de-ma, ji-fa-la, bo-la-fa-er-da-ya, hum [Sanskrit: OM AMOGHA VAIROCANA MAHAMUDRA MANI PADMA JVALA PRAVARTAYA HUM].''
I said, ''This Mantra of Light is the Mantra of Light of the Great Empowerment of Vairocana Buddha. When you recite this mantra, visualize a moon disc in your heart, with a golden Sanskrit seed syllable AH on it. This syllable AH radiates light and illuminates on all sentient beings. Anyone in contact with this light will be liberated from suffering and receive joy. This mantra is the very Illuminated Vairocana Seal with which one may take refuge in Vairocana Tathagata. It is as good as receiving a jewel, a lotus, a rebirth and illumination, where liberation is instantaneous and all vows are fulfilled.''
I told Dodo, ''Tomorrow afternoon, I will write the Mantra of Light and cast it into the lake. I hope all of you will recite it diligently and be liberated.''
The water ghost Dodo bowed and left.
* * *
During the afternoon on the following day, I wrote the Mantra of Light onto a piece of yellow paper and cast it into the lake. I sincerely chanted, ''As the Mantra of Light enters this lake, the lake will become pure water. If commanded to wash one's feet, this water will perform this task. If commanded to wash one's knee, this water will do so. If commanded to wash one's waist, this water will carry out the work. If commanded to wash one's neck, this water will accomplish this task. If commanded to wash the internal organs, the internal organs will be purified. If commanded to clean the dirt off one's heart, the heart will become clear. If commanded to empower, one receives the Light Empowerment.''
I recited: ''As the Mantra of Light enters this lake, countless treasures lie within. The net of light spreads across the sky and all kinds of dharma sounds will be heard, spreading the words of Buddha. Surrounding the lake one will find the illumination of glowing light, dazzling in spectacular beauty. A wind of a meritorious nature blows naturally over the lake, creating ripples, offering a tenderness and warmth to the water. An intricate mix of soft and gentle fragrance also permeates the area. It is simply unimaginable.''
I saw Dodo transforming into a huge water snake, and all the little ghosts transforming into many smaller snakes. They came to the lakeside to receive the Mantra of Light Empowerment. Upon the completion of the empowerment, a wind blew across the jewel trees, creating the purest musical sound. All the water snakes received bliss and joy. The lake with its soft appearance released an all pervading fragrance. The snakes were transformed into dragons in an instant, breaking the water surface and riding on the wind towards the sky above.
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