Voyages to Hell

translated by

Nguyen Khang & Bui H.Huu



Buddha Tso Kong who manifested on August 26th, 1976. Leap year of the Dragon (1976) 

The Immortal’s heart is filled with noble feelings
And captivated by celestial bliss while meditating.
Impassive, regardless of light clothes and cold wind,
He is soothed by love from the living beings.

Buddha Tse Kong:  Be ready for a new visit to hell. Come quickly on the dais. 

Yang Ts’ien:            Yes, Master. I’m ready. 

TK:      Here we go. Alight. 

YT:      There stands before us a fortress whose gate is engraved with the words “Portico of Demons”. We are now at the entrance to the land of demons. But why isn’t the gate of the fortress open? I hear clanking of weapons and tools from inside. 

TK:      Ordinarily, the Portico of Demons is not open. The human souls come through it by themselves. Now, with this rush fan of mine, I’ll give a blow and it will automatically open. 

YT:      Marvelous! Hardly did you agitate your fan, and here it is, widely opened. But how could a man who just died make it open, if he doesn’t have a Buddha’s fan? 

TK:      When a man with a demon’s predestination comes here at the end of his life, the gate opens by itself to make way for him. As a rule, the gate of the demons’ world such opens as soon as the one of the living is closed. Such is the miraculous effect of interaction between the Yin and the Yang. Come along quickly. I’ll show you this place. Don’t indulge in vain reflections. 

YT:      Yes, Master. But... on this side of the Portico, why is there such a throng of people, just like a swap meet! Where are they going, all these people? 

TK:      They are condemned souls who will receive their sentence at the ten palaces of hell. The infernal guards are going to escort them to penitence jails. Let’s not be lagging because of them. Follow me! 

YT:      Yes, Master. This road is so full of holes and obstacles. Where does it lead to, eventually? 

TK:      Just walk for a couple of miles and you’ll see, my son.

YT:      Ahead of us, I see a man escorted by infernal guards. What could he have done? 

TK:      That man in his life was a well-versed religious man of a sect of spiritism. Because he did not have an exact conception of truth, he blasphemed the other religions. After his death, he is subject to punishment in hell. 

YT:      I also see a tall building with a panel on its front saying:” All religions to return to the same source.” Where are we, Master? 

TK:      For the time being, as far as religion is concerned, thousands and thousands of institutions and denominations have been created and grown just like mushrooms. Their followers, who don’t know exactly where the Truth lies, allow themselves to utter scathing and violent criticism against other religions, thus destroying the significance of the Tao. They infringe upon the law of God and commit the so-called “Karma of Speech”. For the sake of their rehabilitation, after their death, they must attend a course called: “All religions to return to the same source”. Look there! The priest-instructors are coming. Yang Ts’ien, kneel down for salutations. 

YT:      (saluting). I offer my respects, Sirs. 

The Pontiff-Priest:      Welcome to you, distinguished visitors, Venerable Buddha Tse Kong and Saint-Scribe Yang Ts’ien. You are from the Temple of the Sages, as I can see. We have received God’s order to give you a decent reception. (to Yang Ts’ien) Young man, I free you from polite obligations. Be on your feet. 

TK:      I bring young Yang Ts’ien here today so that you can take him for a visit to different places and give him necessary explanations. 

P.P.:     Please come into the hall. Take a seat. 

YT:      “All religions to return to the same source”. That’s quite meaningful. But I still can’t catch the real meaning of this phrase. May I get some ideas from you, Venerable Pontiff-Priest? 

P.P.:     In today’s world, there exist five great religions: Confucianism, Taoism, Buddhism, Christianity and Islamism. One can say they are the main religions of higher reputation. All of them, however, had their origin in the same Tao. In the remotest ages, the term “religion” did not exist. Later, God sent down to earth many sages and philosophers who dispersed to different countries and, in the name of God, taught men the dogmas and religious thoughts, and the practice of the Tao according to celestial norm. Humanity was the primitive tributary of a single religion that suffered no separatism.

Unfortunately, once the apostles returned to heaven, their disciples, who misunderstood the meaning of Tao, were divided into different denominations, some in opposition to the others. They failed to know that “hundreds of rivers flow into the same ocean” and that “all doors make part of the same house”. Thence were born unending quarrels and disputes that could not come to mutual agreement. They founded their respective schools of religious thought, which they believed were higher than those of other religions. When they died, their souls could not escape from their destiny, and here, in hell, they descended.

Anxious about such a degeneration of mankind, the Celestial Emperor founded this temple baptized as “All religions to return to the same source” in order to re-educate those religious people who got lost in darkness, and to help them discover the Truth. After adequate learning, they will accede to a higher plane of evolution. 

TK:      You are absolutely right, Pontiff-Priest. But I presume Yang Ts’ien still hasn’t grasped all the subtleties of the matter. Will you teach him on the spot? As a proverb put it, “A hundred things heard of are not equal to one thing seen”. 

P.P.:     That’s a good idea. Now, if you follow me. 

YT:      This hall must cover a surface area of several acres. Its interior looks like a large amphitheatre. Tens of thousands of persons are seated on the flights of steps. Among them are many notables and dignitaries of religions from all nations. They all seem ready to hear the sermon. 

P.P.:     Exactly! They are here just to hear the sermon. Please get seated on the foremost rush mat reserved for distinguished visitors and listeners. 

YT:      This auditorium is incredibly large, indeed. There isn’t any of equal capacity in the human world. These words are written on the blackboard: “All religions to return to the same source”. I see a professor with a close-shaven head who is stepping up onto the platform. He has the appearance of a Bhikshu (mendicant-priest). Everyone stands up to salute him, then sits down again. 

The Professor:      Gentlemen, I have the honor to present to you Mr. Yang Ts’ien from the Temple of the Sages, in the living world, who is here to join us in this conference. Let’s welcome him with applause. 

YT:      Please, Master, these dignitaries are people of different races. How can they understand a sermon given in Chinese? 

TK:      Though the people in the vast world speak a multitude of languages, all have one aim in common - that is the development of the mind and advancement of spirit. Because of this, the soul, after death, knows no language difference or discrimination. For instance, when a peal of thunder is rumbling, peoples from all nations know that it is rain. Today, by hearing the professor’s voice, one can sense the meaning of what he is saying. This is exactly what Buddha did when his voice was raised at the conference, and the significance of his doctrine was understood by people throughout the world. No more questions now. Listen to what the professor says. 

The Professor:       Although belonging to various races, men are endowed with a common character that proceeds from reason. When alive, they may adopt various modes of life and different standards of living, but after their death, they come to the same place. They have different skin colors, but one and all, they know to eat food when hunger makes itself felt, and to sleep when night comes. They are all under the protection of heaven and earth. The sun and the moon shed equal rays of light on them, and the dharma shower is abundantly available to all. Unfortunately, though they possess the same heart, diversity in faith and religion causes them to disparage and criticize each other. They believe that only their religion can elevate the converts to paradise, while the others send their converts to hell. They transform paradise with such limpid sources and such an atmosphere of liberty and euphoria - into a purple and golden tower of their own, ballooning in space. They then lock themselves up in a cage suspended in the air. Viewing themselves as noble and incomparable, they enrapture in joy, and in imitation of birds, they set to sing foolishly. Their tower, thus constructed, constitutes nothing but a kind of hell in the bosom of paradise. Those people are nothing but black sheep waiting for salvation. They are sinners awaiting their verdict. This is the reason why all of you pretended, when in life, to rise to paradise, but you have now fallen here in hell.

            With a variety of skin colors, men can be black, white or yellow. The clothes they wear can be printed with red, yellow, or blue flowers. But their hearts, since birth, are not dyed any color. If they nurture a spirit of disparagement, they are deprived of that common heart dedicated to the religious way. There will be no sense in such words as mercy, and brotherhood, and the life they are preaching. Since the dawn of time, the sun and the moon have shone indifferently upon human beings, the good as well as bad, without any sign of separatism. Due to this, the sun and the moon will radiate forever, leaving a soft fragrance until eternity.

            Gentlemen, you have to awaken your conscience and illuminate your “self”. Abstain from hatred and hostility, for we are now in an era of vulgarization of this principle: “All religions to return to the same source”. What we are to do is this: unite our hearts, treat each other humanely, develop mutual assistance, and be kind to everyone. The doors of all religions should open widely to attract all those who deserve salvation, even if they are not disciples of the same apostle. The prayers of our hearts should aim at the same path of redemption. It is hopeful that some day, all of mankind will converge toward the Celestial Way, transforming this “vulgar world” into an essence of the country of lotus. Through their priesthood the apostles, priests, pastors and monks can only salvage the hearts and souls of their believers. By no means can they rescue the latter’s carnal bodies. Only by discovering the genuine nature of his heart can man escape from his “self” and live a free, eternal life. Once these conditions are fulfilled, universal accord will prevail over the world. Each person will become a Buddha, a demi-god, and all of them will be deities in heaven. Any betrayal to these laws will engender to return to the cycle of transmigration. 

TK:      Well, I think time’s up (turing to the Pontiff-Priest for taking leave). We hope to have an opportunity to meet you again. Yang Ts’ien, be on your knees and give our thanks to our host. 

YT:      Venerable priest, we certainly fail to practice good manners by retiring while in full session of the conference. But it is getting late now. We must be returning to the Temple. We beg your forgiveness. 

P.P.:     It doesn’t matter. I will walk with you part of the way. 

TK:      Yang Ts’ien, come quickly to the dais. Now, tell me, what is your impression about that seance of the conference? 

YT:      The professor gave extremely clear explanations on the Tao and its reason for existence. These days, the religions are throwing criticism at each other and boasting the groundwork of their own. They act the way fruit vendors do when selling their melons, pretending that only theirs are sweet. To believe them, the buyers have to test the flavor of the fruit by tasting it, just as a drinker does, to know whether a beverage is hot or cold. This natural sensation is real, because it is innate, and the consumer alone is capable of giving an exact idea as to the quality of the merchandise. I believe it is the only way to prove one’s objectivity and accuracy in judgment and appreciation. 

TK:      The greater parts of human beings are obstinate and shortsighted. Ascension to heaven is therefore impossible for them. The Buddha, Immortals and Sages have, in the name of heaven, given precious teaching to them.  The proper sense of the Tao is fundamental impartiality. I take you as a typical example. Suppose you are incarnated in some country other than in this, do you think while adopting the religion of that country, you won’t receive my benediction and salvation? Well, if I acted that way, I wouldn’t deserve my name of a Buddha, and the trips we are taking now would be nothing but “the enterprise of a miniature religion” carried out for personal reasons. I hope all people will display a fair heart and reject their egoistic “self”. Otherwise, their paradise would measure five yards wide and wouldn’t have enough room for welcoming the whole mass of creatures.  Here is the Temple! Yang Ts’ien, come down from the lotus dais and get incorporated in your carnal body.

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Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19
Chapter 20
Chapter 21
Chapter 22
Chapter 23
Chapter 24
Chapter 25
Chapter 26
Chapter 27
Chapter 28
Chapter 29
Chapter 30
Chapter 31
Chapter 32
Chapter 33
Chapter 34
Chapter 35
Chapter 36
Chapter 37
Chapter 38
Chapter 39
Chapter 40
Chapter 41
Chapter 42
Chapter 43
Chapter 44
Chapter 45
Chapter 46
Chapter 47
Chapter 48
Chapter 49
Chapter 50
Chapter 51
Chapter 52
Chapter 53
Chapter 54
Chapter 55
Chapter 56
Chapter 57
Chapter 58
Chapter 59
Chapter 60
Chapter 61
Celestial Edict