Qigong of the Buddha School and Buddhism
Qigong of the Buddha School is not Buddhism. I would like to make this clear to you. In fact, qigong of the Tao School is not Taoism, either. Some of us are always confused about these things. Some monks from the temple and some lay Buddhists think that they know quite a lot about Buddhism, so they indulge in unbridled propaganda for Buddhism among practitioners of our cultivation system. I tell you that you should not do such a thing, because they are not of the same school. A religion has the form of religion, but here I am teaching a part of our cultivation school to you, and the practitioners of Falun Dafa shall not take the form of religion except professional cultivators. Therefore, our cultivation system is not Buddhism in the Period of Decline.
The Dharma of Buddhism is only a small portion of the Buddha Law. There are many other profound Great Laws and there are different Laws guiding different dimensions. Sakyamuni said that there were 84000 schools to cultivation. There are only some few of them in Buddhism, such as the Tian Tai Sect, the Hua Yan Sect, Zen Buddhism, the Pure Land School and the Esoteric Sect, which even are not enough for the remaining few beyond the round figure. Therefore, Buddhism cannot represent the entire Buddha Law. It is only a tiny portion of the Buddha Law. Our Falun Dafa is also one of the 84000 schools. It has nothing to do with primitive Buddhism or Buddhism in the Period of Decline or other religions of the present day.
Buddhism was founded by Sakyamuni in ancient India 2500 years ago. When Sakyamuni opened his cultivation energy and attained enlightenment, he recalled what he himself had cultivated in his previous incarnations and then made it public to save human beings. Though thousands upon thousands of scrolls of scriptures have been produced in his school, its characteristics can be summarised in three words: morality, meditation and wisdom. By morality, Buddhism means: to abstain from all desires of an ordinary person. This compels one to give up his desires for personal interests and cut himself off from all worldly things and so on. Thus, his mind will become empty, thinking about nothing, and in this way will be able to enter into concentration. So the two complement each other. When he has entered into concentration, he has to sit in meditation for genuine cultivation so that he can rely on his power of concentration to ascend in cultivation, which is exactly the part of real cultivation in that school. It does not teach how to do the exercise or does not change Benti (the True Being). It only cultivates the energy which determines the level of attainment. So one cultivates nothing but his Xinxing. As he does not cultivate his life, he pays no attention to the evolution of cultivation energy. Meanwhile, he strengthens his power of concentration through concentration and lessens his karma by enduring the suffering of sitting cross-legged in meditation. Wisdom means that one has become enlightened, attained great wisdom, seen the truth of the universe and the true picture of different spaces of the universe and is able to manifest his vast psychic powers. The opening of wisdom or enlightenment is also called opening of cultivation energy.
When Sakyamuni founded his school in his life there were eight religions in circulation in India, among which was a deep-rooted religion called Brahmanism. During the rest of his life Sakyamuni never stopped struggling against the other religions in the realm of ideology. As what Sakyamuni preached was Orthodox Law, the Buddha Dharma he taught became more and more overwhelming during the whole course of his teaching, while the other religions went more and more into decline and even the deep-rooted Brahmanism was on the verge of extinction. However, after Sakyamuni entered Nirvana, the other religions, especially Brahmanism, became popular again. What happened in Buddhism then? Some monks opened their cultivation energy and attained enlightenment at different levels. But they did so at relatively low levels. Sakyamuni reached the status of Tathagata, but a lot of monks didn't.
Buddha Law varies from dimension to dimension in its manifestations. However, the higher the dimension is, the closer its Law is to the truth. The lower it is, the farther it is from the truth. When those monks opened their cultivation energy and attained enlightenment at the low level, they tried to expound what Sakyamuni had said based on the manifestations of the universe they themselves had perceived, what they had learned about and the truth they had awakened to at their own respective levels. That is to say, some monks explained the Dharma Sakyamuni had preached in this way or that way. Still some other monks preached what they had realised themselves as the words Sakyamuni had said and did not follow Sakyamuni's original words. As a result, the Buddha Dharma was distorted beyond recognition. It became entirely different from the Dharma Sakyamuni had preached. In the end, the Buddha Dharma of Buddhism disappeared in India. This is a grave historical lesson. Later, there was no Buddhism in India. Before its disappearance Buddhism went through reformation many times. At length, it combined itself with something from Brahmanism and formed the present-day religion called Hinduism in India, in which no Buddha but something else is worshipped and they do not believe in Sakyamuni. This is what the situation is like.
In the course of its development, Buddhism underwent several relatively great reforms. One of them took place not long after the demise of Sakyamuni. Someone founded Mahayana or the Great Vehicle according to the truth of the high dimensions Sakyamuni had preached. They believed that the Dharma Sakyamuni had publicly preached was intended for ordinary listeners and would lead to self-liberation and the attainment of the Arhatship. It does not offer salvation to all sentient beings, and is called Hinayana or the Small Vehicle. The monks in Southeast Asia still observe the primitive cultivation way practised in Sakyamuni's days. In the Han region we call it the Small Vehicle. Of course, they themselves do not think so. They believe that they have carried on Sakyamuni's original practices. It is true that they have basically carried on the cultivation way practised in Sakyamuni's days.
After the reformed Mahayana was introduced into China, it took root in the country and formed the present-day Buddhism in our country. In fact, it is completely different from the Buddhism in Sakyamuni's days. Everything has changed from the attire to the whole awakening state and cultivation process. In primitive Buddhism only Sakyamuni was enshrined and worshipped as its honourable founder. However, in present-day Buddhism a multitude of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas have appeared and a multi-Buddha belief is practised. Buddhism has become a multi-Buddha religion, and there has appeared faith in a great many Tathagata Buddhas, such as the Buddha Amitabha, the Buddha of Master Physician and the Great Sun Tathagata etc.... Many great Bodhisattvas also have been worshipped. In this way, the whole of Buddhism is entirely different from the Buddhism which Sakyamuni founded at the beginning.
During this period there occurred another reformation. The Bodhisattva Nagarjuna made public an Esoteric cultivation way, which was later introduced from India into our Xinjiang and then the Han region of China via Afghanistan. As it happened to be in the Tang Dynasty, it was called Tang Tantrism. Being greatly influenced by Confucianism, we Chinese are different from other nations in moral concepts. In this Esoteric cultivation way there was the double cultivation of a man and a woman, which could not be accepted by the society of that time. Therefore, the Tang Tantrism was eradicated in the suppression of Buddhism in Hui Chang period of the Tang Dynasty, and thus disappeared from the Han region of China. Now in Japan there is a school called East Tantrism, which, in fact, derives its origin from the China of that time. However, the one who introduced it was not granted Guanding (filling energy into the top of the head). According to the Esoteric Sect, he who has learned something from the Esoteric Sect without going through Guanding is a Law robber and will not be regarded as a disciple taught by the master himself. Another branch was introduced from India into Tibet via Nepal and formed Tibetan Tantrism, which has been handed down up to the present day. This is the basic situation of Buddhism. I have just given a very brief description of its development and evolution. In the whole course of the development of Buddhism, some other schools, such as Zen Buddhism founded by Bodhidharmer, the Pure Land School, Huayan Sect, etc. also appeared. All these schools resulted from the awakening to what Sakyamuni had preached and formed parts of reformed Buddhism. There are more than ten such schools in Buddhism. And they all take the form of religion, so they belong to Buddhism.
Most of the religions which came into being in this century are false, in fact, not only in this century, but also in some previous centuries, as there was the emergence of many new religions in all parts of the world. All the great enlightened beings have their own paradises for the people they want to save. The Tathagata Buddhas, such as Sakyamuni, Amitabha, the Great Sun Tathagata, etc., all have their own paradises over which they preside for the human beings to be saved. In our Milky Way galaxy, there are more than a hundred such paradises. Our Falun Dafa also has the Falun Paradise.
Where can those false schools take their followers for the sake of salvation? They are unable to save other people. What they preach is not the Law. Of course, some people founded a religion and did not intend to act as a demon to undermine the orthodox religions at the beginning. When they opened their cultivation energy and attained enlightenment in different dimensions, they saw a bit of truth, but they were rather low, very far from an enlightened being who is able to save other people. They discovered some truth and found that some of what happens among ordinary people is wrong. They also told others to do good deeds, and did not oppose other religions at the beginning. At length, people began to believe in them, thinking what they said was reasonable. Then, people trusted them more and more and consequently began to worship them instead of religions. When their desire for fame and gain was up, they would like to have the public grant them some titles. From then on they became founders of a new religion. I tell you that such religions are all evil. Even if they do no harm to people, they are still evil religions, because they stop people from believing in orthodox religions. The orthodox religions can save people, but they cannot. With development as time passes by, they will do evil on the sly. Recently, many such practices have spread to China. The so-called Guanyin School is one of them. So, do be on your guard against them. It is said that there are more than two thousand such practices in a certain country in East Asia. In Southeast Asia and some Western countries, there is nothing that people do not believe in. In a certain country, there are simply witch religions. All these things are the demons that have come out in the Period of Decline. The Period of Decline not only refers to that of Buddhism, but that of a great many spaces down from a very high dimension, which have become corrupt. The Period of Decline not only means the Period of Decline in Buddhism, but means there is no Law in the hearts of people to maintain morality in human society.