Ghosts [And] Gods
If asked, ‘Are [there] ghosts [and] gods? [Or] no ghosts [and] gods?’
Say, ‘[There] are.’
‘[Are] ghosts [and] gods believable, [for] pious worship? [Or] not believable, [for] pious worship?’
Say, ‘Also believable, also not believable.’
‘Why [is this] said?’
Say, ‘[Did] Confucius not say, “Respect ghosts [and] gods, yet distance from [them]”?
Covered [in this] one line [is] complete [with] that [which is] complicated.
Of “respect” said, have [it].
Of “distance” said, believe yet not worship [them].
When [making] of timely offerings, make [them] with respect, [as] such, [and] nothing more.
[If with] excessive belief then, flattering [with] offerings then, hoping [for] their informing [of the] auspicious [and] inauspicious, descent [of] blessings [and] protection, [and] obtaining [of] spirits’ communication, thus swiftly so, [is] entering of evil [with greed and delusion].
Yes! Those worthy of respect, yet not [to be] distanced [from], are all Buddhas [and] all Bodhisattvas.
How [can this] not [be] considered?’
Pure Land Tradition’s 8th Patriarch Great Master Liánchí
Essays Written [By The] Bamboo Window
Namo Amituofo : Translation by Shen Shi’an