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Questioning The Path:

A Warning to Cultivators of the Way

By: Lin Ai Wei

This is an in-depth warning for all those beginners out there who are amazed at powers and great abilities, for those who are looking for teachers of the Way, it is best to search for the wisdom mind, not spiritual abilities. Spiritual Abilities do not equal Wisdom. They can simply be attained by cultivating, and any personal seeking for Spiritual Abilities is simply feeding desire, mind of separation, ego. Abilities benefit no one if there is no Wisdom, Patience and Compassion, if there is no Virtue. In looking for a teacher, keep questions handy, if the teachings make sense to your own logic and reasoning, accept them, if not, they are not for you, but may be for others. There is no one way to teach someone, but there is one way to know what is not wholesome. Unwholesomeness is simply selfishness, greed, ignorance, arrogance, inconsideration. Anything that is not virtuous is not proper, whether it is Daoist or Buddhist. Wisdom is not hard to find, but it is hard to accept. Keep in mind; Any cultivation school, any system, any path that has to take from an animal or any other living being, in order to advance one's cultivation or health in any way which considers the death of the animal or living being, is not proper cultivation. Would an animal seek release, there would only be certain conditions for such an act, like an animal coming to one personally, and asking for help releasing it from its mental constrictions. But the release wouldn't be through hurting the body, but by doing certain things through mind which will allow the animal to leave without pain, suffering and to be able to cultivate. That doesn't mean the mind of that animal is free from the bonds of birth and death. If a teacher comes to you telling you your energy is wrong in many places, and that you need his help as the only way, or that of an animal, take a step back. There is no reason why you can't do it yourself, especially no reason why a Buddha or Bodhisattva can not help you learn how to help yourself. A teacher passing energy to you is only moving your own energy, helping it to vibrate higher, and charging it with another quality of energy. But it is temporary. It wears off soon. That is why one must cultivate regardless of the

master's transmission. The path of self benefit is not a proper one. Eating meat, which many beings do in order to benefit their appetite, is more of a mental habit than a need of the body. Every living being has a similar make up of elements for their physical body. Just because animals have proteins and similar elemental properties, doesnt mean humans must eat them. In the past I had visited my Quan Zhen Dao Shifu out in Taian, Shandong China. We discussed "outside" practices, also known as Wai Dao which are outer practices that are not of the formal, traditional school of Dao and Buddhism. Traditional here means literally anything that is not in accord with the foundation of virtue and moral set forth in Daoist and Buddhist cultivation; that which is labeled religious and philosophic, for both were not seen as separate back in ancient China. She basically said that anything that is not wholesome is demonic, and will result in the students turning into ghosts, demons, demon kings and or getting stuck in their own mind of improper cultivation, and result in them entering the hell realms of their mind at death.

We spoke about killing an animal for the use of its essence, and releasing its spirit for the sake of the cultivators body and cultivation. She, as well as I, both agreed that it isn't wholesome. I didn't need her to tell me, I already knew.. If one's energy is "imbalanced", all they have to do is change their behavior and meditate, cultivate proper teachings. If one is sick, all they need is good concentration, and proper cultivation methods to change their sickness, mind, and be cured. It is very simple. Also, one doesn't need the energy from an animal in order to progress. This only keeps a karmic connection with that animal, and results in strengthening one's attachments, afflictions within the cycle of birth and death. Animal energy isn't something you want hanging around you. By you utilizing its mind and energy, it is connected to you karmically. At some point in the future, you will have to repay the animal for using its energy, and if the animal was killed for your sake, you will have to pay with your life to put an end to the karmic debt for the animals killed. You can learn from the animal by learning its gong fu, its spiritual cultivation, but that's all. If it bites you, and transmits its blood and or saliva to you, but it was under the conditions of you cultivating at the time, then it may be beneficial. Plants, trees, animals, stars and planets, different realms can all offer their teachings in maintaining one's health, and living a wholesome life.

There is no need to kill an unwilling living being for cultivation and health purposes. Basically, any "releasing" the spirit of an animal for the sake of one's own cultivation is not proper at all. It only welcomes in demonic influences. It is already demonic to have such thoughts. A teacher may have great abilities, but that doesn't make them wise. They may know the workings of some aspects of the mind and the universe, but that is common with cultivation. Demons can study Daoism, Buddhism. A person wearing a Buddhist and or Daoist robe doesn't make them Buddhist or Daoist. Also, demons can heal people, and perform many great and beneficial things if they want, and they can harm greatly if they want, and they do. So for the closing of this letter to you all, please do not think killing for cultivation is proper, even if the teacher displays amazing powers. For even further help in looking for a teacher, please refer to the Shurangama Sutra with commentary by Venerable Master Xuan Hua. Please read slowly and thoroughly the last section of the sutra called The 50 Skandha Demon States. Use this text as your guideline, and you will have no problems. Any doubts about this Sutra, feel free to contact me personally.

Peace and Blessings. May you all be protected by the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas of the Ten Directions. Lin Zi Yi