- Touring the Fifth Tribunal
- Re-visiting the Gouging Heart
- JiGong: In this
world there are people who are not capable of achieving any
meritorious deeds or attaining any success in anything, yet when
they see others progress or achieve fame, they become jealous.
To hide their own weakness of failure, they take to criticizing
and finding fault with the achievements of others. They take
pleasure in pointing out the weak points of others. They also
like to run down the religious beliefs of others. When such
people die, their souls will be sent to the Gouging Heart Prison
(to extract their dirty hearts for being jealous of the success
of others and for bad-mouthing religious beliefs of others), for
purification. Today we will tour Hades again. Yang Sheng, do get
up on the lotus flower platform.
- Yang Sheng: I obey
your order, Master, I am safely seated and so we can start….
- JiGong: We have
arrived, quickly get down.
- Yang Sheng: Truly,
we can see the Gouging Heart Prison right in front of us.
- JiGong: Today, to
save time and not to disturb Sen Luo Wang, we will go straight
to the 16 small Gouging Heart Prisons. The Officer has opened
the gate to receive us.
- Yang Sheng: We will
- Officer: Welcome to
JiGong and Yang Sheng for coming here again today. Do enter and
have a look.
- Yang Sheng: This
Prison’s punishment is really very frightening and severe.
Starting from the First Tribunal to this Tribunal, I have heard
of nothing except extreme grief and deep sorrow, particularly
so, on reaching this Gouging Heart Prison where the suffering of
the souls gets more intense.
- Officer: The heart
of a person is under the direct control of himself. The gouging
heart punishment is so terrible that there is no other suffering
to compare with. The injured heart can cause fright to the six
roots; therefore the soul’s suffering is so terrible that no pen
can describe it. (The six roots are 1] ear 2] eyes 3] tongue 4]
nose 5] body and 6] mouth)
- JiGong: Let us go
inside to gather more data from the souls for our Book.
- Officer: Please
remain outside the Prison proper while I bring a few souls out
for you to interview them. I will instruct the Generals to
suspend temporarily, the process of punishing the souls and to
use the “revival fan” to fan
and revive some so as to bring them back to their original form.
- General: Yes, Sir.
- Officer: Quickly
untie the bondage of 3 souls for them to come here and relate
their sinful stories to JiGong and Yang Sheng.
- General: I have 3
souls out. Here; souls, quickly follow the Officer out of the
- Officer: This is
JiGong Huofo and Sheng Xian Tang’s Yang Sheng. They have
received an Order from Heaven to write a Book about Hades in
order to teach human beings to do good deeds. Quickly tell your
sinful stories so that they can incorporate them in the Book.
- 1st Soul:
When I was alive, I was working as a government servant. Because
I was not able to earn a good record and promotion, I became
jealous when I saw fellow workers get promotion to higher
positions in government service, I thought that my immediate
superior, by overlooking me, had treated me unfairly; therefore
I began thinking of taking revenge on those colleagues who got
promotion. I told my superior officer untrue stories about my
colleagues and at every opportunity I carried tales. Four years
ago, I contacted cancer of the liver and then died. The soldiers
of Hades brought my soul before the Magic Mirror where all my
sinful deeds, when I was alive, were reflected. My soul was then
sent to the Fifth Tribunal where Sen Luo Wang, being very angry,
scolded me saying: “You were
incapable, you lacked modesty, were jealous of the ability and
attainments of your colleagues; you carried tales about them.
This shows that you had a poisonous heart.” He
accordingly sentenced me to this Prison to suffer. During the
day and even at night, the Soldiers of Hades came to punish me
by gouging out my heart. The pain is so great that I have a
feeling as if my liver and intestines are being severed. When I
was alive, I did not believe in retribution and now that I am
dead, I am undergoing so much punishment and suffering.
- JiGong: Human beings
must understand that they should never have a jealous heart.
You, by being jealous, had destroyed the close relationship of
society which can be likened unto “a horse which injured the
mob,” i.e; one who acted in a way detrimental to public welfare.
You chaps should have learned from the ways of virtuous and wise
men thereby gaining knowledge and progress, otherwise you will
be subjected to your present fate; having your heart gouged out
and undergoing such great suffering.
- Officer: Second
Soul, quickly speak out and say what sins you had committed when
you were alive.
- 2nd Soul:
When I was alive, I was an ardent believer of Buddhism; I read a
lot of literature on Buddhism. Following this I came to look
upon people of other religions as heretics and despised them. To
those who believed in Taoism, I told them that their religion
was a lower order, far beneath that of Buddhism and that after
death, they had no chance of going to Paradise. Some of my
friends gave me literature transcribed from planchette writing
but I refused to look at them saying that these were writing
from a heretical religion. By running down other religions, I
thought that I understood what Buddhism stood for and that I was
very intelligent. How was I to know that after death I was not
to be accepted by Western Paradise but instead, was cast into
this Prison? When I died, my soul did not see any Buddhist
representative to receive me; instead, two evil spirits arrested
me and brought me to the Fifth Tribunal. When Sen Luo Wang saw
me, he was very angry and scolded me;
“You were a devotee of Buddha and also having gone through the
usual Buddhist penance, did not have a heart for others and the
religion of others, but hated and belittled other religions. You
did not understand that the laws of Buddhism stand for the
equality of all religions. If any religion teaches morality and
discourages evil deeds, then that is a true and proper religion.
You thought that the laws of Buddhism were boundless, but so are
the laws of other true religions. Why did you always indulge in
self-praise and consider yourself as being cleverer and more
intelligent than others?”
- Because of my egoism, self-exultation and
swollen-headedness, I always despised others and looked down
upon them, not knowing that I had gone against what Buddhism
stands for. I sincerely hope that fellow Buddhists will not
follow my bad example because my efforts to become a good
Buddhist were channeled in the wrong direction.
- JiGong: It was a
pity that, unknowingly, you went against your conscience in
trying to defend and promote Buddhism. Now that you have
experienced the gouging of your heart, after you have served
your sentence here, you will have to undergo further punishment
by way of the extraction of your tongue.
- Officer: Third Soul,
quickly tell what sins you did when you were on Earth.
- 3rd Soul:
I was the leading planchette handler of a certain temple. At the
beginning, I was very sincere and honest in handling the
planchette and the deities gave me much inspiration. Later when
the temple management did not give me due respect and
consideration, I asked myself what was the purpose of my
sincerity in being the leading planchette handler? Accordingly,
I told the management that planchette writing was a fake and
was directly under the control of the handlers; therefore they
should not believe in deities. When they heard this they lost
faith and stopped going to the temple. After seven years, I fell
sick and later on, died. The Soldier of Hades brought my soul to
the Fifth Tribunal and Sen Luo Wang scolded me:
“You were a leading planchette handler
and although you were not given due respects by the management
of the temple, you should not have said that planchette writing
was a fake, thereby offending the deities. You, therefore, had
committed grievous sins and I have no option but to sentence you
to the Gouging Heart Prison for a term of 15 years; this is to
punish you for your evil heart in offending the deities. After
you have served the sentence, you will have to be sent to
another Prison for your other sins.”
- Ah! It is already too late now for me to repent! Can I ask a
favor from JiGong?
- JiGong: Planchette
writing actually represents deities’ communication and nothing
bad should be spoken about it. The main and most important
purpose of planchette writing is to teach people to do good and
to lead an ascetic life. The permission of Yu Huang, the Jade
Emperor must first be obtained before any planchette writing
session can be held. Therefore, to belittle planchette writing
session is also insulting deities and is a very great sin which
cannot be pardoned. As our time is rather limited, Yang Sheng,
please prepare to return to Sheng Xian Tang.
- Yang Sheng: Thank
you, Officer and General, for your kind assistance. I am afraid
we have to say goodbye now.
- Officer: We are much
honored to have you with us and we are very glad to be of some
assistance. Please come again.
- JiGong: This Gouging
Heart Prison is very important and so we will have to visit you
- Yang Sheng: I am
safely seated on the lotus flower platform, dear Master, we can
- JiGong: We have
arrived at Sheng Xian Tang. Yang Sheng, get down. Soul, return
to your body.
- End of Journey No 33