There was a village named
Ramathaim-zophim. It was located
in a hill near Jerusalem. Here
lived a man called Elkanah and
he had two wives. One was called
Peninnah and she had many sons
and daughters. The other wife
Hannah did not even have one
child and she felt sad about
this. Although she knew that her
husband loved her more, she
still felt very sad.
Every year her husband would
take the whole family to a place
called Shiloh to worship their
so-called God. After their
worship, they would have a party
and everyone would assemble in
the temple. The wife that had
many children would be
surrounded by her children. But Hannah was always alone.
Seeing that the other wife was surrounded by so many people, Hannah looked at herself and
felt more sad than before. When
the feast finished, she left the
party and walked alone to one
corner. She felt very bitter and
told God in her heart that she
was very sad. Then she prayed:
"If the Lord gives me a child,
then I will let him serve the
Lord all his life."
God had heard her prayer, just
like Hes had heard any of our
prayers. However, priest Eli,
when he saw this wife, thought
that she was drunk. This wife
said to him, "Priest, do not
think that I am a wicked woman.
I am also not drunk. I only feel
very unhappy, very grieved."
Then she told Eli about her
circumstances. Eli then said to
her, "If you want to have peace,
you can pray to the Lord to
grant you the child that you are
yearning for." Having heard the
priest's words, Hannah wiped her
tears and felt better after
The Lord really replied to her
prayer and gave her a very
beautiful child. She named him
Samuel. Hannah said, "When my
little child is a little older,
I will bring him to Shiloh to
become a monk. He will stay
there all his life to serve the
Lord. This is what I had
promised Hirm." She really did
kept her promise and brought the
child to priest Eli, saying,
"This is the child that the Lord
has granted me in response to my
prayer. Now, I give him to you
because I want to give him back
to God. Please take good care of
him and train him to work for
the Lord." A few days later,
their family returned to
Ramathaim-zophim. Samuel was
left behind with priest Eli.
God knew that to be separated
from her own child was a very
painful and very difficult
decision for Hannah. But Hes did
not disappoint her. With the
passage of time, Hes granted her
three more sons and two more
daughters so that she could make
use of her motherly love to take
care of more children. Every
year when they went to Shiloh,
Hannah would go to see her
little Samuel and brought him
clothes that she had made
herself by hand.
Samuel had now grown up to be a
very lovely child. Anyone who
saw him loved him. Now that
Priest Eli was old, he very
quickly had to prepare his
children to minister the temple
of God. However, Eli's children
were unlike their father. They
were all greedy and had no love
nor respect for God. God warned
Eli that Hes would not give the
job of a priest to people like
his children. The Lord said: "I
will choose a priest. This
priest must be loyal to me,
listen to me, and do everything that I request."
One night, Samuel was sleeping
in the temple of God. At that
time, he was somewhat awake and
he heard someone calling his
name. Samuel ran to Eli, but the
old priest had not called him. A
similar thing happened again.
Then Samuel asked Eli, "Are you
calling me? I am here." But Eli
had not called him.
However, the old priest knew
that it must be the Lord calling
Samuel. Therefore, when the
voice came again the third time,
Samuel answered because Eli had
taught him what to say when he
heard the voice again. At that
time, Samuel said to the Lord,
"Speak, for Your servant hears."
The Lord said to Samuel: "I want
to punish Eli's children. No one
from their family can become my priest!"
The next morning when Eli asked
Samuel what God had said to him,
Samuel did not tell Eli what the
Lord had told him the night
before. The old priest then
commanded Samuel to tell him.
Reluctantly, Samuel had to tell
him. Having heard that, Eli felt
very sorry. However, he said,
"Let the Lord do what seems
right to Hirm."
After a while, Israel had a
battle with a race called the
Philistines. Israel sent a
special box, an 'ark' to Shiloh.
The ark contained God's power
and they thought that the little
box would bring them luck in the
battle field. Therefore, Eli's
two children brought it to the
camp. However, the box seemed to
be of no help to them, the
Philistines still won the
battle. Not only that, they got
hold of the holy box and also
killed Eli's children. Eli was
now very very old and was almost
blind in both eyes. When he
heard the terrible news of the
defeat, he broke his neck.
The Philistines returned to
their city in glory and placed
the holy box in their temple of
the 'Dagon' (the Dagon was a
Philistine idol) as a symbol of
victory. The next day, their
idol -- the statue of the Dagon
-- fell down before the holy box
and the nose was broken. They
put the statue back to it's
original place. However, it fell
down again the next morning.
This time, it was completely
broken. Then, plague started to
spread throughout the city.
Everyone was very scared. They
said, "The God of Israel is
starting to work now. Let us
quickly get rid of this holy
Therefore, they sent it to a
place called Gath. However, the
plague still continued to
spread. This time, the
Philistines were very worried
and confused. They discussed
with their sorcerers and
priests, "We have to send this
box back to Israel quickly. As
well, there should be some
present as an offering to God."
They were now afraid of the God
of Israel, thinking that Hes was
the real God with unlimited
Some wise people in their race
gave the following advice: "Only
by doing this can we be saved.
You have to remember what God
had done to the Egyptians
before!" Therefore, they sent it
by putting the box in a cart
pulled by two bulls. Then they
waited to see what was going to
The two bulls were very tame.
Just like being trained, they
brought the box across the
border and walked straight to a
village in Israel called Beth
Shemesh. When they arrived at
the village, the people rejoiced
at seeing God's holy box back.
By this, the Philistines knew
that the God of Israel should be
Do you know what was the most
touching part of this story? It
was the woman who was yearning
very much for a child. Because
of having no children, she felt
so lonely, painful and was
teased by others. Then she ran
to God and cried. Even after
having longed so much, the
little child was offered to God
after being born! When I see
someone offer their child to
God, I am very touched. One
could only do this when the
heart is the most pure. If it
were us, probably we couldn't
let go because it is really very
difficult to do so. Getting one
after such yearning and then
offering it to God. However,
because she had offered one,
therefore she got five children.
That's why it is said that we
should not be greedy. We also
should not think that when we
get something then it is
supposed to be like that. One
really can't say! Never forget
God, then we will have
everything. If we want to get
something, then we have to know
that everything belong to Hirm.
When Hes gives us, we should not
think that it is ours. If we
need to use it, then use it.
When other people need to use
it, it could also be shared. It
would be best if we offer
everything to God. The more we
offer Hirm, the more we will
Just like with her child, she
could have said, "I offer to God
but no need to give. Offering
just in my heart is enough." Are
we not also always like this,
"It's good enough for me to have
the intention! God knows my
sincerity. It's the same
wherever it is! When my child is
here, he also belongs to God.
Since everywhere belongs to God,
then being next to me would also
mean belonging to God! Then
simply put him next to me, God
is omnipresent! Since Hes is
everywhere, it would be enough
for Hirm to know that I have the
intention to offer!"
It's not the same, because the
love between a mother and a
child is very deep. To be really
separated from the child is
different. Also, to be able to
put down the heart and offer the
child to God is really
different. Wasn't it said that:
"To say it in the heart is good
enough, then no matter where he
is all would belong to God. It's
the same whether he is in the
church or at home." It's not the
same. When we give a total
offering from the heart it is
not the same as just saying it.
If we are able to put down our
heart or not able, it's not the
same! Because of this, God was
touched and then gave her five
more children. Originally she
had no children and there was no
hope. Eventually she had six!
This is not just a matter of
children, it's all the same. If
we are not greedy and we can put
down everything, then we will
have more. Really, this is my
personal experience. I have not
given anything that I have not
been able to get back! Besides,
I do not even think about it and
then it comes back. It really
comes back by itself!
Just like a story I told you
before: When a farmer went to
cultivate the land, he dug up a
jar. He took it out to have a
look. Oh! It was real gold and
glistening. He put it to one
side and continued to cultivate.
After that, he went home and
told his wife, "Hey! You know
what? Today I dug out a jar of
gold! It's full and very
His wife said, "Where is it?
He said, "It is still in the
field. I dug it out and put it
to one side."
The wife said, "You are so
stupid. Why did you leave it
there and not bring it back?"
Then she continued to scold him.
He said," Ayah! If it is really
meant for us according to our
fate, it will 'crawl' here! Only
when it crawls to my door then I
will think that it's mine,
because digging it out doesn't
mean it's mine!"
Maybe that person had practised
the Quan Yin Method so he was
like that. One would not think
like that if one didn't practise
the Quan Yin Method.
The wife was aggravated to death
after hearing that. She couldn't
say anything because the field
was rather far away from home
and the path was not that easy
to walk. The farmer comforted
her, saying, "It doesn't matter.
If it is ours, it will 'crawl'
to our door."
He really said 'crawl'. Using a
word like this is more fun!
Otherwise, how can gold crawl?
While they were talking to each
other, there happened to have
been two burglars outside and
they heard everything.
Originally they wanted to steal
their things. Having heard the
story, they were very happy and
did not want to steal their
small things! They hurried and
ran to the field to take the jar
of gold. When they got to the
field, there was really a jar.
They said, "Ayah! Our fate is so
good. We will be billionaires!"
The two of them sang and danced
for a while and then opened the
jar to have a look. Oh! Inside
there were only snakes! Not one
piece of gold! They were scared
to death and closed the jar
immediately. Then they left it
there and quickly ran away. The
next morning, the farmer went to
the field again. After
cultivating the land, he saw
that the jar was still there. He
opened it and saw that the gold
was still inside. He closed it
and left it there. Then he went
back to tell his wife, "I just
want to tell you, the jar is
still there. It wasn't stolen.
Old woman, you just worry too
The wife was very agitated and
said, "Why did I marry such a
stupid husband, not bringing the
gold back? Why do you just keep
looking at it over there all the
The farmer said, "No hurry! If
it is ours, I tell you, it will
'crawl' to our door!" He
continued to say that.
It happened that the burglars
were outside, wanting to hear
what was the matter with them.
Therefore they were also much
agitated after hearing that, "He
thinks the snakes are gold!
Okay, we'll just let it 'crawl'
to your door!"
Both of them then ran to the
field. Seeing that the jar was
still there, they opened it and
that it was full of crawling
snakes. They said, "All right,
we'll let it 'crawl' to his
door!" Then they laboriously
took the jar to the farmer's
door and left it there. Before
they put it down, they looked
very clearly into it again to
see if it was really gold or
snakes. Then, they very happily
hid themselves and waited for
the drama the next morning.
On seeing the jar in the
morning, the farmer said, "Hey!
Old mama you see! I told you
that it would 'crawl' to our
door!" When the jar was opened,
both of them could see that it
was full of gold. They then took
it and became rich. The two
burglars could not believe it
and continued to watch. At last,
they could not bear it and asked
them, "How did you turn the
snakes into gold?" At that time,
it was really gold, not snakes.
Before, when the two burglars
saw it, it was snakes.
Then the burglars spoke frankly
to both of them, "It's really
surprising. Why did we see
snakes and when you saw it, it
was all gold?"
The farmer then said, "Ayah!
Because it belongs to me that's
why it changed like that. It
'crawled' to my door! I really
didn't want it."
Then the farmer felt sorry for
them and gave them one or two
pieces. At that time, what they
were holding was real gold. If
they had opened it themselves,
it would have been all snakes.
Why do I tell this story? The
meaning is that it's good enough
for us to be natural in our work
sometimes. There is no need to
push too hard. Therefore, some
people who try very hard still
can not earn much money. On the
other hand, some people
basically didn't bother about
money and the money just keeps
coming in, and can not be used
up. It's all because people have
fate. To us practitioners, we
have God. Meaning that our
highest wisdom, God will take
care of everything for us. If we
believe in Hirm, our life will
be more comfortable. No matter
under what sort of
circumstances, we can live very
freely and won't worry too much.
Just like Jesus Christ knew that
He would soon be crucified.
Though He could have run away,
He still accepted it! He
understood clearly and told His
disciples beforehand, "After a
while, you will not see me!" Yet
He still accepted the
arrangement, although this was
not a happy thing. Because we
have faith, practice, the
unhappy circumstances will be
less. Because our hearts are
consoled, we have insurance,
have a sense of security, have a
kind of courage, therefore we
can face problems more bravely.
It's not that we escape the
unavoidable problems of this
We can never avoid the things of
this world. Even if your driving
technique is the best, sometimes
you still might have a car
accident. It's not that your
driving is no good, it's because
someone else's driving is no
good. It's not that you are
drunk, it's others who are
drunk. Sometimes your car is no
good. For example, the tire is
perforated, you ran over a
stone, some animal bumped you,
or someone suddenly ran in front
of your car, so that you could
not brake the car in time, et
cetera. All these could happen.
Therefore, it's really hard to
be a human. If there is no
faith, no practice, ayah, I
don't really know how you can
get through the days in your
Why do all of you like to
practise with me? Because you
get some benefits! Just like
when you get ill and need an
operation. Although it's
painful, you still have to go.
Without that little while of
pain, it would be even worse
later. Then, after the
operation, you still need to
recover and take care of
yourself. It's not that after
the operation all is well.
Similarly, we also need to train
ourselves through work. After
accumulating many experiences
then we can get what we want.
Therefore in practice, you
cannot always ask me to give the
sweet and bright side to you
only. This is also no fun!
Even in such a comfortable and
full of fun place like the
Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve
still felt bored, so bored that
they had to listen to the snake
and ate the senseless apple! The
taste must have been no good,
there was nothing good to taste!
With so much fruit, what did
they lacked that they had to eat
that one? Everything was theirs.
Only the fruit of that tree
could not be eaten. But still
they could not bear it! Because
it was so boring, even when they
had so many things, they still
wanted something else, just
wanted to change the scene.
Therefore when we practise,
sometimes it is very difficult.
I know this. Sometimes, the
faith decreases, because the
things we asked for we are not
able to get, thinking that God
is not taking care of us, that
the Master power doesn't care,
et cetera. Not really! Because
sometimes what we requested is
not good for us.
Just like the apple that God
asked not to be eaten. It was
not because Hes wanted to
reserve the apple for Hirmself.
It was because it was not good
for them! After eating that,
then really the mind changed and
became different. Both of them
became impure and complicated.
They started to know what was
shame, and started to say what
was good, what was bad, and made
a mess. It was unlike when they
were like children, so pure and
Similarly, our brain wants many
things and it does not mean that
everything is good for us.
Therefore, sometimes when we ask
for some lousy things and we can
not get them, then we blame and
say, "God is not taking care!
Master is not listening to my
prayer." It's not like that!
Even I have to work according to
rules. I cannot avoid things
like operations. Like a doctor,
if he needs an operation then he
has to be operated on by others.
You cannot say that because he
is the best person to operate,
then when he gets ill he should
not allow the other person to
operate. He cannot operate on
himself! Just like Master
Vimalakirti, sometimes he got
ill. Then people asked him, "Why
are you sick?" He said,
"Sentient beings are sick,
therefore I am sick." He could
not be without sickness!
Sometimes, he had to get ill to
let others to know that he is
the same. Otherwise, everyone
would think that being a Master
means you can avoid all kind
suffering from birth, getting
old, being sick and death. It's
too good! Then everyone would
want to become a Master because
of this and not have the courage
to be a human, thinking that one
can avoid one's responsibilities
or avoid human suffering.
Therefore, most of the so-called
Masters suffer. They have to
show some of their sickness and
suffering so as to console the
sentient beings. Everyone is the
same! Then when we are sick, we
would remember that even our
Master got sick, so what about
us? If a Master is too happy
every day, people would wonder,
"Is he made from iron or copper?
Because he is different from us,
that's why he can practise. I am
different from you, how could I
possibly practise!" It's the
same! The bodily structures are
The real Master is very
ordinary, just the same as you,
and has everything. It's only
that he can use what he has in a
relatively good way. The average
person has the same, but uses it
in relatively not so good ways.
For example, we have human
emotions. A Master who has
reached the Tao has also human
emotions. But he uses the
emotions to help others, to be
compassionate to others, to let
others know that he can
understand them since he also
has it himself. He can accompany
others and simply chat with
them. After chatting, the
feelings are deeper and it would
be easier to liberate them. We
ordinary people use this human
emotion to bind others and
Therefore, though it is the same
thing, the use is different.
Like money, two people have the
same amount of money. One uses
it to scare others, to force
others' wives, pretty ladies, to
bribe people and to do other
senseless things. On the
contrary, the other person uses
that money to help the poor and
do something good. The value of
money is the same, but the use is not.