Wednesday, October 26, 2016
Ghost Fight Ghost (鬼打鬼)
During the 80’s I was a little obsessed with the True Buddha School movements so I did join many of their activities then. Although the True Buddha School was and still is being treated as the new kid on the block, it continued to flourish within local Chinese community. The reason behind its popularity is perhaps the loosely combined Taoist and Buddhist doctrines coupled with lots of folk beliefs. Almost everything one can think of would present in True Buddha School. Also, with the avocation of supernatural power which is strictly prohibited by mainstream religions; no wonder why so many people were crazy about the True Buddha. In addition, gurus could be ordinated easily too compared to other Buddhist schools.
At that time, many small common practise groups (共修组) comprised of 3~5 people were being formed within a residential area; and a small True Buddha shrine were setup within a community. Other than the standard True Buddha rituals; many localised and private practices were naturally being incorporated. A very interesting practice similar to the auto-movement or Tenaga Dalam exercise was called ‘soul awakening’ (启灵学) was the foundation practice.
Now, a very interesting phenomenon could be observed when a few people having auto-movements together in a rather small living room. With the ‘awakening’ of each person’s soul, all of the participants would individually started to dance and performing various mudras indicating their own patron spirits. The advocate of that time was ‘1 mantra, 1 mudra and 1 method’ as I could still remember it.
When one’s soul is ‘awakened’, he/she would be in a trancelike state as practitioners would proudly say that it is the person’s spiritual guide that is training the practitioner; I would not want to argue. So said, many pretty funny cases happened during these private practise sessions. During of the session for example after everyone was in a trance state:
Bro Lim started to move about in the living room amongst the 5 practitioners. After some movements, he made the gesture of Guan’gong (关公) and said: “Ho! Ho! Ho! I am the invincible Guan’gong’!”
Sis Tan also moved in a trance state while making the mudra of Green Tara and proclaimed herself as the ‘Green Tara’.
Aunt Lee danced for a while and sang in high pitch and announced she was the ‘Golden Mother Of The Heavenly Pond’ (瑶池金母).
Sandy also danced for a while and sang the ‘om mani padme hum’ mantra and indicated she was the ‘Avalokitesvara’.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t feeling too well that day. So, for safety reasons, I couldn’t fall into trance. My spiritual guide for that time was the ‘Manjushri’.
As I sat in a corner and watched the fantastic display of spiritual dances, a commotion broke out after Guan’gong bumped into the Golden Mother and Green Tara. Both of them started to argue in trance state:
Guan’gong: “Golden Mother and Green Tara, do you mean to find fault with me? Why do you block my way?”
Goledm Mother: “Guan’gong, have you no respect on me?”
Green Tara: “Wait! You are no Guan’gong… I can see you with my 3rd eye… You are actually a pig spirit!!”
(While the arguments were raging, the compassionate Avalokitesvara continued to dance…)
Guan’gong: “How can you insult me! Now, eat this!!”
(Guan’gong was making a series of hand gestures at Golden Mother and Green Tara. And both of the said goddesses retaliated with more hand gestures…)
“Now, eat our powers!!” Both Golden Mother and Green Tara responded quickly.
(After a grand display of body movements and hand gestures, the Golden Mother and Green Tara were losing ground…)
Guan’gong: “Ha! Ha! Ha! Now, who is the mightiest? On second look, you are no Golden Mother and Green Tara; both of you are actually pigs!!”
(Just as when Guan’gong was celebrating on his victory, suddenly Avalokitesvara jumped in…)
Avalokitesvara: “Hey, pig head! I am the Thousand-Armed- Avalokitesvara! Retreat now or meet your doom!”
(Of course Guan’gong would not take the insult and another grand display of hand gestures between each other… And finally, Guan’gong dropped onto the floor…)
Guan’gong: “I cannot fight this long-armed lady ghost now! I must go now…”
So, said; Bro Lim shivered and a few seconds later; he was himself again. Likewise happened to Sis Tan, Aunt Lee and Sandy in turn. All of them celebrated with each other on another happy and progressive spiritual training… But I could only keep quiet…