The Phoenix Who Bathed in Fire
- from WTBN 500
- «Guru's Talk»
- By Living Buddha Lian Sheng, Sheng-Yen Lu
- (Translated and edited by TBN)
There are two poems.
The first one is:
A single chant of "Amitabha" gives birth to a lotus in a fire
Even the Five Schools [of Mahayana] and all the religions cannot
Constant chanting keeps the demons away
Every thought, no difference, only the Buddha in front.
Since that night, I feel safe
My faith is further solidified, and without any doubts
My eyes glitter, as the world broadens in my mind
Peace and harmony without exception [since then] 'til now.
These two poems both point to one story. There was a female practitioner
of the True Buddha School. Every night before sleeping, she would
chant a single round of the True Buddha Sutra, this practice continuing
for several decades, without any breaks. She had no doubts about
One night, she dreamed that Guru, in her dream, instructed her to
pack her money, clothing, and other important belongings to go away
somewhere, because the area she lived in would catch fire in three
She believed Guru's advice without any doubts and followed his instructions.
She then asked her family to move temporarily to a relative's home
for three days.
Her family scolded her: "Crazy!"
She told her neighbours the same thing and they reproached her:
Even though her family ridiculed her, they nonetheless followed
her advice. They thought, "It's only for three days. If nothing
happens, we'll just move back again. No big deal."
days later, her neighbour's homes did catch fire. A whole row of
houses burned down, one after another. After that, her family stopped
calling her crazy and her neighbours stopped calling her superstitious.
They all now believed that the True Buddha Sutra was indeed miraculous
Later, at another time, Guru entered her dream again and told her:
"There will be another fire disaster. But this time, you don't have
to move away. The fire will stop at the house next to yours."
She warned her neighbours, "Your homes will catch fire. Please be
ready for it."
Her neighbours believed her this time.
The houses indeed did catch fire again, caused by an electrical
short-circuit. The fire burned several houses, but when it reached
the house next to hers, it was put out. She did not lose anything.
And because her neighbours trusted her predictive ability, they
were able to make preventive preparations early and their losses
Now, everyone recites the True Buddha Sutra with her. Through her
guidance, many of them took refuge in the True Buddha School. She
told people, "I don't have any ability to predict things. I just
chant the True Buddha Sutra every night. Because of this, I have
Guru in my dreams to protect me. Without Guru coming into my dreams
and telling me what to do, it would be very hard to avoid the disasters."
Since then, she was given the nickname, "The Phoenix Who Bathed