Learn the True Kindness and the True Love
— Record of lecture given by Ou Wen Wei in Haikou, China, on Sept. 22, 2005
Students of Hainan—and all students—how are you?
I am very happy to be here, and I believe that all of you students are also very happy, especially the students from Hainan Island, because I haven’t visited this island for six years. This evening I was very pleased to enjoy the chrysanthemum wine that was made especially for me by my good student Ms. Dong six years ago. (She saved this wine for six years and waited for me to come and enjoy it.) I said to her, “Six years have gone by. How much true sentiment and how many wishes it condenses!” For this kind of true sentiment in the world, you need to comprehend it and enjoy it with both your heart and soul. I could feel that what I drank wasn’t the wine but the true sentiment of my students! I believe that all of us have this feeling.
Over the years I have taught you two methods: one method is for how to be healthy, the other is for how to live your life. If we compare the methods, the one for living your life is more important. Because only if you know how to live your life, to live as a truly kind and benevolent person, and to live as a person who really knows how to love, can you use the method that I have taught you, the practice of Pan Gu Shengong, to receive more energy from the universe. Moreover, when you can live your life in this way, not only during the practice but also in daily conversations and actions you will be able to receive energy. However, when your heart and soul haven’t reached this level yet, you will not be able to have this result. Therefore, I hope you will remember what I say tonight: learn how to live your life, learn to be a truly kind and benevolent person, and learn to be a person who truly knows how to love.
When you practice Pan Gu Shengong, I ask you to recite the password three times: “Take kindness and benevolence as basis, take frankness and friendliness to heart.” These words teach you exactly how to become the kind of person you should be. The theme of these two phrases lies in two words: one is kindness, the other is love. These two words are not unfamiliar for both Chinese and all people in this world. However, do you truly understand what they mean? I can say that you have not truly understood what they mean. All your understanding of the two words is very superficial and very trivial. In general, people understand that kindness means not to steal things, not to rob others, and not to hurt others intentionally. How simple this kind of understandings is!
Quite often many people have said to me: “I am already very kind and benevolent, why do I still have to suffer so much from my illnesses? Why are there so many obstacles in my life?” When hearing these complaints, I feel very sad and grieved. I know there are indeed many people in this world who have to suffer the agonies of their illnesses and endure the tempering of their lives, and that is one reason that I feel sad. The other reason is that many people don’t know why they suffer, why they get sick, and why they always encounter agonies in their lives. I feel sad for their ignorance.
Why do people get sick? The most important reason is that you do not understand yourself, you do not understand the structure of your body, and you do not understand your heart and soul. Therefore, you do not know the way to take care of your own body. After hearing what I said above, some people might feel very surprised, as they might think: “I don’t understand myself—do you think you do?” This kind of thinking is very superficial. It is true that you do not understand your body. Do you know how your heart is functioning? Do you know how your immunity resists viruses? You don’t know. Do you know when you will get sick? When you do get sick, do you know when you will recover? All these kinds of questions exist every moment in your body. Nevertheless, you do not know the answers. So you see: how little you understand yourselves!
Do you know that in your heart and soul there is not only the side of kindness but also the side of evil? Do you know what kindness is and what evil is? Can you distinguish between your daily conversations and actions and tell which of them are kind and which of them are evil?
All of this I continuously teach you with the hope that you can gradually and truly understand yourself and hence truly understand the universe and all the things in it. By doing so, your heart and soul and your body can reach a higher level.
What is real kindness? I defined it very clearly in my book The Path of Life. The basic distinction between kindness and evil is whether an action harms others or not. If an action doesn’t harm others, then it is kind; otherwise, it is evil. In the past, when I talked to my students about this standard, many of them instantly felt complacent because they thought they seldom hurt others and never steal anything from anyone; therefore they claimed that they were already very kind. Their understanding was very shallow. Not to harm others is only the most basic kindness. What is considered to be not harmful to others? It is not merely as simple as not taking away someone’s benefits and not stealing someone’s money or treasure, you also need not to hurt someone’s feelings or heart. In another words, at the very least we need to learn how to respect others. However, in our daily life, do you know how to truly respect others? Not even referring to strangers, but just to your family members—can you truly respect them?
Last year in Hong Kong, I talked about this subject matter to my students: how parents usually love their children, especially when they haven’t grown up and are only a few years old. However, do you truly know how to love? No, you don’t. In Chinese families, quite often this happens: when dinner time comes, the child is still playing and you ask him to come to dinner. The first time you have a very good attitude and you say softly, “Little one, come and have dinner now.” However, he still continues with what he is playing. The second time when you call him, your facial expression starts to change and your tone gets stronger as well: “Come and have dinner!” But he still pays no attention to what you said but continues with his play. At this moment you get angry [pats the table]: “Come and have dinner!” Does this happen to you? [Answer from the audience: “Yes!”] You can see it. Why does this happen to you and why do you have this expression? It is because you still pay too much attention to yourself and emphasize your own feelings, your self-respect, and your reputation. Therefore, even though you love your child a great deal, you use a very different way to express yourself when he doesn’t follow you or doesn’t listen to your order. Isn’t this a type of evil inside your heart and soul? Therefore, we need to truly understand the deeper meaning of being kind and benevolent, and we need to know what being respectful to others truly means. I teach you these methods to understand yourself and your life, and I teach you to become a truly kind and benevolent person.
Of course, I know that you are not able to be truly kind and benevolent right away; however, you should try your best to learn. How do you learn with your great effort? First of all you need to learn to be calm and peaceful; don’t be in such a hurry to express yourself. Then learn to relax your mind and your body, and in this way you can have a smile on your face and you can use your friendly smiling face when confronting others. In this world everybody wishes to receive respect from others and furthermore wishes to receive friendly care and very friendly smiles from others. Isn’t this true? Don’t you have such wishes?
Since you have such wishes, you should realize that all people also have such kinds of wishes. However, many people don’t comprehend this reasoning. Now, today, you understand it—so shouldn’t you demand of yourself that you begin to be truly kind and benevolent to others? [The audience answers: “Yes!”]
We are not able to be truly kind and benevolent to all people yet, but I ask you to learn first to act this way with your relatives, then learn to act this way with fellow Pan Gu Shengong students, and then learn to act this way with strangers. If you can try your best to act this way, then you can gradually improve the quality of your heart and soul. In the process, you will automatically receive more energy, and your body will certainly become healthier. And therefore, you won’t need to ask me again: “Master Ou, how can I get a better result? How can I recover from my disease?” If you still ask me these kinds of questions, it indicates you don’t understand what I just said a few moments ago.
I wish for you to engage your best efforts in living your life and becoming a person who truly knows how to respect others, truly knows how to be kind and benevolent, and truly knows how to love. If you can continually learn these things, your health will improve daily, and your ability will improve gradually as well. Therefore, I wish for you to begin right now to learn to be truly calm and peaceful and to be truly forgiving.
Being forgiving is going one step further than being calm and peaceful. What is forgiveness? Forgiveness involves broadening your mind and not being concerned so much about personal gains or losses, about your status or financial standing, about your emotions or desires. Even if you are taken advantage of by others, you should pay little attention to it. You should learn to use your forgiving mind when confronting others and to tolerate others’ weaknesses; Pan Gu Shengong instructors, especially, should try harder for this.
Learn to forgive others’ weaknesses and mistakes, and don’t always assume that what you say and what you think are completely right. Actually, in this world kindness and evil, right and wrong are divided into many different levels with different standards. If you haven’t yet realized what these levels and standards are, it is very difficult for you to distinguish someone’s actions and tell whether he or she is right or wrong, kind or evil. Only through diligently studying my lectures and my books can you gradually improve your understanding. If you haven’t yet comprehended these many levels and various standards, what should you do? You should learn to be calm and peaceful, and learn to be forgiving. Be sure not to argue with others excitedly and angrily, and you also shouldn’t use this kind of argumentative behavior to confront relatives with. When someone speaks ill of you, if the level of your heart and soul is high and you are forgiving, then you won’t be concerned about it and therefore your sufferings and worries will be reduced. However, if the level of your heart and soul is not high enough, you will be too concerned about it and will even bring the evil nature from the bottom of your heart into play; you will hate the person who speaks ill of you. Isn’t this kind of phenomenon very common? Therefore, you can see that human beings have tremendous sufferings and frustrations that come from their own hearts and souls. And, of course, these sufferings and frustrations are triggered by external factors. For instance, if no one scolds you, you won’t have suffering. However, if you understand my teaching, even though someone criticizes you, you won’t blame him or hate him. Won’t you feel better in your heart?
The consumption of a person’s life force is due mainly to negative reactions of the heart and soul, such as too much stress and anger—which consume the life force the most. Ancient Chinese had the following sayings: “Giving a happy laugh makes you look ten years younger; having a worried look makes your hair become white.” Chinese people often hear these two phrases; nevertheless, how many Chinese truly understand them? These two statements indicate the relationship between a person’s emotions and life force. When your heart is full of happiness, your life force functions the best; therefore, you can maintain good health and your aging slows down as well. However, how can you always be happy? You need to learn to be calm and peaceful, learn to be forgiving and open-minded, and learn to be kind and benevolent. If you are too selfish and too narrow-minded, how can you always laugh heartily?
At the beginning of this year I brought a group of good students to Cambodia. Let me talk about one very simple example. There were many Cambodians who sold post cards, and in different places the prices were different. When you bought post cards at the lowest price, you felt very happy. However, when you bought post cards at a higher price, and later you found that someone bought them at a lower price, you felt unhappy. Why does this happen? This demonstrates that the evil, selfish, and greedy nature of your heart and soul has expressed itself again. Therefore, when we go shopping, do you often have happy and unhappy sentiments? When you feel that you are taken advantage of by others, you become very angry and hateful. Have you thought whether it is worth it? Being taken advantage of by others is already a kind of loss, which is nevertheless tiny, as you lose only some money. However, because of your narrow-mindedness you feel unhappy about it, which is actually a bigger loss, as it consumes your life force.
Ancient Chinese had two other sayings; one was, “Accumulation of tiredness becomes sickness”; the other was, “Depression becomes sickness.” These theories are very deep. Excessive tiredness without resting surely consumes your life force; continuous unhappiness consumes even more life force. However, being happy or unhappy is dependent upon the understanding in your heart and soul: that is, whether your heart and soul can be broadened!
When you master these theories, the effect you get by daily Pan Gu Shengong practice will become better. In your daily life you might still feel that it is difficult to be calm and peaceful. So, first, when you are practicing Pan Gu Shengong, you need to learn to have a calm and peaceful mind, to have a pleasant mind, and to have a broad mind in doing the practice. How do you achieve this standard? When you are practicing Pan Gu Shengong, you should stop thinking of what kinds of diseases you have and stop worrying about when you will recover from your diseases; instead you should think of my teaching, of learning to be calm and peaceful and learning to be forgiving and open-minded. When you practice in such a state of mind, you will improve much faster than before. If you want to move one step further, you may try your best to learn to be calm and peaceful and to be forgiving and open-minded in your daily life, and consequently you will receive energy in normal times as well.
I know that today there are some Hainan students who want to share their achievements and their experiences of practicing Pan Gu Shengong with me and with all of us; however, because of time, there is no need to talk one by one. I believe that you all wish to hear more of my speech, is that true? [The audience: “Yes!”] Nevertheless, I very much understand your sentiments, your situations, and your health conditions. For those of you who are prepared to talk about your experiences, would you please come over; I would like to shake hands with you. [Shakes hands with students from Hainan.]
This time I have lead a group of foreign students to travel in China. They are meeting with my students in China and having celebrations together, and their feelings are also very deep. Several of the foreign students had to leave early, in Shanghai, although they were reluctant to do so. One of them spoke about her feelings, and she said, “I have a big family.” Yes, Pan Gu Shengong is a big family filled with kindness and benevolence, happiness and friendliness. Every Pan Gu Shengong student is a member of this big family, which we should treasure and should become a good member of. In the trip to my hometown, Xiqiao, I met with students from Guangdong, and I said to them, “I treat you as my brothers and sisters, and I can also say it this way: I treat you as my sons and daughters. My heart is filled with kind and benevolent love for you.” And certainly I am also full of kind and benevolent love for human beings. But you are more fortunate, as you get to learn the theory I spoke of earlier about how to live your life, and therefore you can sooner master this method of being healthy. As a result, I hope that you will value it more, that you will care about and help more people, and that you will broaden your mind even more—these are my hopes and expectations for you!
Hainan students are being very warmhearted and friendly to the foreign students, and they have specially brought some candies for you and wish that you all live happily and sweetly. Now they will hand out the candies to you. [Applause.]
Let us applaud again for our true sentiment. I hope and wish that you can comprehend well what I have said tonight. If you can comprehend well and conduct yourselves well, with my teaching, then your lives will be full of good health, full of happiness, and full of love!
I am going to recite a poem that I wrote; the name of it is The Sentiment of Spring. I believe that many Chinese students have read this poem, but not all of them have fully understood it.
Creeping through the blockade of ice and snow,
Still a little haggard,
Remaining a little frigid.
Creeping gently with small steps,
Yet bringing hope for new life,
Bringing all things back to life.
No matter whether it is cloudy and drizzly for days,
Or whether it is sunny;
Near and far there is thrilling laughter, alive.
What does spring represent? What is her most important implication, her effect?
She represents new life. The sunshine, the rain, and the dew of spring, along with her soil, provide the best foundation for new lives; therefore, all kinds of plants are born and grow flourishingly in spring. Those trees that had dry leaves or that lost their leaves sprout again in spring, which means their lives come back—that is the most important effect and implication of spring.
What is the deeper implication of this poem? It is this: Pan Gu Shengong is the spring that brings new lives to people! It all depends on whether you can understand and hence make very good use of her.
The process by which you accept Pan Gu Shengong is also like the expression of spring. At the very beginning you don’t understand and you might also have a skeptical attitude, or have very strong selfish and narrow ideas. For instance, once patients hear that this qigong method can cure disease, they wish they can recover faster, and even wish they can recover after one night’s sleep. Isn’t that being too greedy? There is such a big gap between the greedy soul and the password of Pan Gu Shengong (which is “Take kindness and benevolence as basis, take frankness and friendliness to heart”). And do you have the qualification to receive such great improvement in such a short time if you are so greedy? No! Therefore, we have to improve our understanding. Consequently, in my poem I wrote, “Still a little haggard/ Remaining a little frigid,” because you haven’t understood. Don’t you think that the process of accepting Pan Gu Shengong is the same?
Well, for such a happy evening I reserve the rest of the time for you to sing and dance. I would like to take the initiative, and will sing the poem. [Master Ou sings The Sentiment of Spring.]
Translated by: Jessica Lin