One day in March of 2003, my mother became ill with something like a stroke. She couldn’t move the right side of her body nor could she talk. At the emergency room, the diagnosis was that she was in the last stages of an inoperable brain cancer with a tumor the size of a fist. Unfortunately chemotherapy was not an option. She had about a zero chance of being cured with radiation treatments. We were told to take her home for hospice care for her final days. We were all very panicky and very sad with the anticipation of having to watch our mother wait for her death.
At that time, I kept praying that my mother could have the opportunity to see the Buddha Master, H.H. Wan Ko Yeshe Norbu Holiest Tathagata. The Buddha Master was merciful, and the arrangements were made for the Buddha Master to see my mother immediately.
I remember that day very clearly. At the altar, my mother was anxious and crying because she had lost her ability to speak, but the Buddha Master said, “It’s alright, it’s alright. I understand it all.” The Buddha Master accepted my mother as a disciple and also transmitted dharma to her right then and there. That day, my mother couldn’t talk nor do the mudra because her right hand was paralyzed. I remember that the merciful Buddha Master came down from the platform, held her good left hand, and personally put the Cultivation Seed Syllables on the palm of her left hand. That particular scene is deeply imprinted in my mind. That’s the empowerment a Buddha gives to a suffering living being. I was deeply moved and even more grateful to my Buddha Master, although the Buddha Master does not allow his disciples to call him Buddha. Nevertheless, His Holiness is a true ancient Buddha who has descended into this world.
With all that happened at the altar that day, my mother used her eyes to communicate with the Buddha Master. My father and 4th eldest sister were also there, but they didn’t seek refuge with the Buddha Master at that time. After we went back home, my mother looked at the palm of her left hand everyday and studied it very hard. She would look at the palm of her hand even at night when the light was not on. (During the more than six months from the time my mother fell ill until the time of her rebirth in a Buddha Land, she did not take one painkiller. She lived three months longer than the doctor had predicted.)
Early in the morning, three days before her 70th birthday, my mother’s condition turned worse. She became unconscious. Her whole body was twitching. The paralyzed right side was stiff and un-bendable. She had rapid breathing and an increased heart rate with her blood pressure dropping. Both the doctor and the nurse notified us to prepare for the end and dress her properly for the funeral. It was unbearable to see my eighty-year-old father so sad. The whole family was nervous and confused.
The first thing in my mind was to beg the Buddha Master to be merciful and send mother to a good place. The Buddha Master made time in a very busy schedule to receive my father and me. It was already eleven o’clock at night. My father begged the Buddha Master to allow for mother to have her 70th birthday before she left us, and also for both of her daughters to have time to come back from the east coast to see their mother for the last time. The Buddha Master said very decidedly, “No problem! Let her have her 70th birthday before she leaves! I think Guan-Yin Bodhisattva will let her stay for a few more days before receiving her to the Western Paradise of Ultimate Bliss! I am ashamed to say that I don’t have that kind of dharma power to keep her. Only the Buddha can help her.”
Right away the Buddha Master empowered a Mantra Wheel and Dharma Instructions, instructing us to have my mother wear the Mantra Wheel on her head to shake her spiritual mind. The Dharma Instruction would be for her to wear at the time of her passing on to the Pure Land, using the power of the Seed Syllables to enter the Western Paradise of Ultimate Bliss.
After we went back, my mother’s pupils were already dilated, and her body temperature was low. She passed away. We followed the instructions we received from the Buddha Master and put the Mantra Wheel on my mother’s head, feeling very scared. My mother had already left. Was it too late for her to wear the Mantra Wheel now? Unexpectedly, a miracle happened. Within only two short hours, mother regained consciousness. Her pupils, body temperature, and breathing all became normal. She answered some of our questions by nodding, shaking, and moving her head and by blinking her eyes. Her consciousness was completely clear and normal. Not only did my mother wait until both of my sisters came back from the east coast to celebrate her 70th birthday, but days after that, mother would sit in a wheelchair, using her unparalyzed left hand to offer incense to the Buddha.
Many monastics were there to witness the process of mother’s revival. My aunt, who had been there nursing my mother, was deeply shocked and realized how great and powerful the true Buddha-dharma is. Furthermore, it changed my father, who has been a Christian for the past fifty years. He became a disciple of the Buddha Master.
Only after my mother was lingering in her sick bed and had started to accumulate phlegm in her throat, and my father could feel that my mother was suffering from the phlegm collecting in her throat, did he kneel down in front of the picture of the Buddha Master, silently begging the Buddha Master to ask Guan-Yin Bodhisattva to come and receive mother in the Western Paradise of Ultimate Bliss to enjoy the blessings! As expected, at 6:50 early next morning, my mother left peacefully with her mouth open like a sleeping baby. A message was relayed that morning from the Buddha Master’s attendant Kuan that the Buddha Master would use the most profound and wonderful Pure Land spirit-raising Dharma to raise my mother’s spirit from suffering and would respectfully ask Guan-Yin Bodhisattva or her attendants to receive mother to the Western Paradise of Ultimate Bliss within seven days. I was all very grateful for the Buddha Master’s empowerment to send my mother to the Western Paradise. Not only were her face and lips rosy, her limbs were also soft so that the task of dressing her properly for the funeral was easy.
However, the most amazing thing was when I knelt in front of my mother’s body that day and said, “Mom, if you have seen Guan-Yin Bodhisattva or the attendants sent by her with the message that they are coming to receive you, please close your mouth and smile so we don’t have to worry.” I kowtowed three times to thank my mother for all the years she spent raising me, knelt in front of her bed, and silently recited Guan-Yin Bodhisattva’s sacred name. I lost track of time. My mother had been like a sleeping baby with her mouth opened, but now her mouth was closed and she was smiling. Wow! My heavens! I was shocked. I thought my eyes were deceiving me, that I’d made a mistake. I hurried and asked my family to come and see. Everyone saw the same thing I did---that she will be received by Guan-Yin Bodhisattva or her attendants in the Western Paradise of Ultimate Bliss.
At that time, there were birds singing very beautiful tunes outside the window, just as described in the sutras. Normally, there is no bird around or near the house. That day, the recorder suddenly played Guan-Yin Bodhisattva’s sacred name automatically. All of these remarkable auspicious events brought tears of excitement to two of my aunts who were taking care of mother at that time and who were also cultivating themselves as Buddhists. They said, “We have been doing our cultivation all these years, but now we have seen what is called the true Buddha-dharma.” Because of mother’s ascent and her rebirth in that Buddha Land, they kept asking us to take them to the Buddha Master to seek refuge.
Imagine what level of realization a holy reincarnated being has in order to be able to communicate with Buddhas and Bodhisattvas and ask Buddhas and Bodhisattvas to call back my mother from death, allow her to stay many days, and come and arrange to have her received as desired. That can only be done by a Buddha! The fact that my mother passed away, came back to life, and ascended to the Western Paradise of Ultimate Bliss after her 70th birthday is only a very small and ordinary case among all of the Buddha Master’s many disciples. There are too many other examples to mention concerning all the other disciples who attained accomplishment, became liberated and ascended to the Pure Land.
Many disciples have only seen the Buddha Master once and received transmission of the Buddha-dharma, such as fellow disciple Yu-Shan Hou. He practiced the dharma that the Buddha Master transmitted to him and was able to visit the Western Paradise of Ultimate Bliss. He came back to tell everybody that he would pass on to the Western Paradise of Ultimate Bliss seven days later. As he predicted, he passed on to the Western Paradise on a lotus seven days later.