A Buddha means an Enlightened Master, who is a living being with human emotions. Besides having the emotions of an ordinary human, a Buddha also has wisdom. There is only a slight difference between us and a Buddha; we, too, have wisdom but it is yet to be opened. A person who has his/her wisdom fully opened is a Buddha. Once our wisdom is fully opened, we, too, will become Buddhas.
Wisdom is an intangible power; the Buddha Nature is an intangible quality. Therefore, the power of a real Master is also intangible. Being intangible does not mean being nonexistent. We can feel, know, and understand that this power really exists. Without this power, it would largely be a waste of time practicing any method.
News 104, Pearls of Wisdom
Everyone tells us from the Buddhist bible that human life is the most precious, and the Catholics also say the same, and then in the Muslim scriptures it is said that we are guests on earth only. So this means that our home is not here; it means we are greater than just the human shell of the body.
Now then, everyone tells us that we are so great, but where is our greatness? What is so great about human existence? At most we know our greatness only through our mortal understanding. For example, what kind of position we have in our company measures our greatness, or in society how successful we are is how people measure our greatness. That is the most we can judge how great a person is, from our human point of view.
Then, if we think carefully, these things are not permanent. Even, excuse me for saying, the presidency is not forever for anyone to hold. Though the presidency is the highest, the most prestigious position in a nation, but still you cannot hold it forever. So many millionaires, so manu famous persons have gone out of sight and we do not know where they have gone. We can know where they went to if we practice the method laid down by ancient and present real masters, who all have taught one and the same method. Whoever says that he preaches the Truth, then he really must teach the same method — that is, the method which helps one to realize how great one is and what is the relationship between us and our Father — God, or the so-called Buddha Nature, or the Tao.
These different names from different religions indicate the same power, the Almighty, the Ever-present, Everlasting, All-love and Mercy. This is what we call God, or the Most High, the Almighty, the Tao, or the Buddha Nature, or the Ju Lai, Thathagata.
Why is it that many people call this power by different names? It is because of the different traditions and the different ways of expressing; it is also because of the language barrier and that people do not often translate the real meaning into the local language. For example, everybody knows Buddha and thinks He was the only one Buddha. No, this is only a title for an enlightened saint. You may even call Him Christ. Christ is a title for and enlightened being in the Hebrew language, and we don’t translate it into our English language and we keep calling Him Christ, or Buddha, and then we think that there were only two famous saints and they were the only ones in the world, who ever have come, and who ever will come. So here we confuse ourselves.
In modern times we have other words, like “guru.” Now everyone becomes a guru, even I myself [Master & all laugh]. I was so surprised to see on television “Guru Ching Hai is coming ” and I said to myself, “Jesus, now I am becoming a guru.” [laughter.] It is good for the Americans because they are now acquainted with the term “guru.” If the television or the newspaper said Ching Hai Fa Shih, the Chinese title for a guru, people would shake the head and not understand and say “What is that? Fa Shih?” Or if they used the Sanskrit title Ching Hai Buddha, then people would say, “No, there is only one Buddha in India and He died over 2000 years ago,” and then people would fight, thinking I’m boasting myself to be a Buddha.
Actually, to become a Buddha is nothing so terribly out of reach. It is just as you learn for many years to become a doctor, so you can learn for many years and in many ways to become a Buddha. So do not make a big deal about becoming a Buddha and then make a small deal about ourselves. That is unfair and very self-detrimental, self-disrespecting, because Buddha also said we all can become Buddha and we all have Buddha Nature. That means that we and He are equal; the only difference is that He discovered His Buddha Nature, meaning His inner treasure, and we haven’t.
“The Tao, the Sound, the Word”
Shakyamuni Buddha found his own, and Jesus also found his own inner highest power, therefore they became so great and so wise, that after thousands of years the whole world are still worshipping them. We may worship Jesus and Shakyamuni Buddha, but we must not forget that we ourselves can also become as great as they have been. Shakyamuni Buddha said, “I’ve become a Buddha, and you will also become the Buddhas”; Jesus Christ also said, “Any great thing I can do today, you can do it also.” It means that we can be their equals.
If we want to be their equals, we should learn the same method that they practiced. The method is the Quan Yin Method — listening inward to our own real Nature, which is the Kingdom of God, God’s power or Buddha Nature. The more we communicate with this inner power, the greater we will be. Yes, it’s just as at schools, where the more we learn, the more knowledge we obtain. We can learn inwardly, and the more we learn, the greater wisdom we obtain. The Chinese saying — “Constantly studying with the Buddha” — means learning inwardly.
“The Inner Sound Creates Boundless Love”
When Buddha came to this world, He said He had come to make everyone understand the way of a master — which means how to become a master. Jesus also said, “Whoever believes me shall not walk in darkness”, and then He said, “Whatever miracle I do today you can do also.” Buddha also said, “I have become Buddha, and you will become Buddha.” “Buddha” means an enlightened master. It comes from the Sanskrit root word “Bodhi,” which means wisdom. Someone who has Bodhi is “Buddha,” meaning someone who is enlightened, is an enlightened master.
Why is it called “enlightened”? Because when you are enlightened you have light; you have light inside you, outside you and in the whole universe all is your light. Your light is even so great that it shines outside, that even some people can see the light around you. Therefore you see Jesus, Buddha and the great saints all had the light around them, a halo around them. So this is what it means by being “enlightened.”
“The Importance of Finding an Enlightened Master”
Q: Dear Master, I have heard that in Buddhism there is no God, only Buddha. Is this true? Please explain.
M: Yes. The Buddha didn’t say there is no God or there is God; He just kept silent. Why? I would like to keep silent also. Because most people imagine God with their own conception, a very limited and powerless god, and a very not successful god. Therefore the Buddha didn’t want to say and admit their so-called “god” conception, um? Um! But He said there is another thing called “Anuttara-Samyak-Sambuddha”. This means the Most High, the Highest that no one is higher than this. This means the highest kind of order, the highest power, that is what He means by “God”. He doesn’t want people to get attached to the worn out conception of their local god, and their personal god, and their this and that god. Understand?
“The Key of Immediate Enlightenment -
Q: Are the Buddha and God the same? Is believing in God good? Or is believing in Buddha good?
M: So now my answer is that the God power and the Buddha Nature is the same thing. But the Buddha is not the same thing. Understand? From the God power or the Buddha power were born the Buddhas into the world in order to teach us. When a Buddha comes into this world to be in close contact with us, He has this God power with Him. He has this Buddha power with Him or with Her. I do not discriminate. Woman also can become a Buddha I may tell you. But, originally this power is not a person, it’s just... it is a being, it is a power, it is a wonderful love, that we cannot use language to describe. But this power is unimaginably great and loving, it creates all things and looks after all things. But sometimes, the creatures do not listen to the instructions of this greatest power. Therefore, this greatest power manifests into a body, and uses a body of this worldly image to teach all the beings again how to believe in the greatest power which exists inside ourselves. That’s why the Christians say: “Know you that you are the temple of God and God dwells within you, God lives within you.” The Buddha says: “Every being has Buddha Nature inside.” That’s the meaning of that.
Now, the Buddha’s power, the God power and the Buddhas or the prophets are different things. Understand that? The prophet brings the message, the love of God, of the Buddha power, to our world. And the Buddha power or the God power is still, peaceful, lovingly in all things. But that power doesn’t let you know that it is there. If it wants to let you know, it manifests into a body, uses a body as a vehicle to speak to you and remind you how you should behave, what you should do in order to realize, the greatness within you, the greatness of the Creator, of that Buddha power. Now the Buddha is the prophet. In English the Buddha is the prophet, or an enlightened Master who brings the message of that highest power to us. Understand? That is the little difference between Buddhas and God power or God. But actually it’s not much different. Why? Because the Buddha, meaning the prophet, is one with God already. Like Lao Tze says, “All beings... all beings are one.” Or Jesus says: “I and my Father are one”, meaning that He and God become unified. Or the Buddha says, “I have become Buddha, I and all beings are now not discriminated.” It’s difficult to say this. So, actually, in a supreme sense, a Buddha is not different from the greatest God, a Buddha meaning a prophet. But in the worldly sense, He is different. Why?
Because, God is God, and the Buddha or the prophet is also God, but is also a human being. Understand? When He is in human life, He looks like a human. He has human weaknesses, He has human necessities, how you say, the needs of a human body, like He must eat, He must go to the toilet, He must sleep, He must talk, He must wear clothes, He gets sick, etc. So in this sense, He is not God completely, but He has the complete God power within Himself, whereby God never gets sick. Understand? Never has to go to the toilet, never has to sleep, never goes to the restaurant, etc. So, in our own unwise eyes, there is a difference between them, but there should be no difference. Because the body is only a vehicle of that great one. Okay! It’s difficult, but try to understand.
Thus, if you believe in God it is good. If you believe in your prophet then it is also okay. Believe in God through a prophet, believe in God through a Buddha, that’s also okay. Jesus says: “No one goes to the Father except through Me.” Or the Buddha says: “If you do not meet the Buddha, if you don’t see a Buddha, you cannot get liberation. You cannot get the highest level of enlightenment.” It is similar. Similar meaning, different saying.
“The Key of Immediate Enlightenment -
Q: Christ said, I am the way, the truth, the light. No man comes before the Father, but by me. Is Buddha an anti-Christ or another form of Christ? Did Buddha claim to be the son of God as Christ? Christ said a man must be born again to obtain salvation. What does Buddha say on this subject?
M: What Christ said is correct. Whenever a master, a living master comes, and you follow that master then you can go to the Father. Except through that master you can’t go to the Father. That’s the necessity for having a living Christ. Therefore, Christ said, “I am the light of the world, so long as I am in the world.” He didn’t say I am forever. He was afraid that we would misunderstand, so he said, “as long as I live in the world, I am the light of the world. After Me I will send other comforters, and before Me, there was... such and such.” Yeah, so... and then, Buddha is not an anti-Christ. Christ is Buddha.
Because Buddha and Christ teach the same thing. If we take the patience, we would understand. Buddha didn’t say he is the son of God, but he said he came from the “Tathagata” womb. “Tathagata” means the ocean of consciousness, the womb of all consciousness. It means God consciousness. When Christ came from God, or was the son of God, or when the Buddha came from the “Tathagata” it all has the same meaning.
“The Key of Immediate Enlightenment -