Chapter 31-40
Chapter 34

                                                                             CHAPTER 34                                                                                                       THIRD VISIT TO THE PRISON OF HEART-WRENCHING                               Buddha Tse Kong who manifested on July 3rd, 1977. Year of the Snake. In the 7th lunar month, when hell opens its doors.                                                                                                                       POEM                                                                                                                                                                 In July, full moon is the time of redemption                                                                                               Happy and delighted, the souls return home                                                                                             They are set free for thirty days on earth                                                                                                     And do not want to come back after having fun.                                                                                        Buddha Tse Kong: In the 7th month, the doors of the prisons are opened wide. Those brothers and sisters have an opportunity to return to the living world, enthusiastic and happy. For this reason, the 7th month is customarily called the month of “Pardon for the sins of the dead”. The living men should be very cautious not to disturb the demons. If they preserve their respect for the deities, they will have no fear of offending them. The doors of hell being opened, our trips will face difficult obstacles. But I can assure you that the demons of hell will move away quickly at the sight of Buddha Tse Kong, alias the Mad Monk.                                                                           Yang Ts’ien: Demons are nothing but human beings changing their forms. All we need to do is to remain calm before their monstrous forms and they will vanish by themselves. I have no fear at all, Master.                                                                                                                                                      TK : That’s what I call a fine speech, Yang Ts’ien. Now, how about going?                                         YT : I am well in place, Master. Let’s go.                                                                                                      TK : Destination!                                                                                                                                               YT: Before us are the building of the “Portico of Demons” where the doors are opened. The souls are hustling their way out, all of them beaming and merry with this chance of inhaling a breath of fresh air.                                                                                                                                             TK: In the 7th month, the Portico of Demons is widely opened, and all of the souls living in the popular quarter of hell are permitted to go out in turn and wander to their hearts’ content. They head toward the world of the living, as gay and excited as birds leaving their cages.                        YT : Why do these souls move away as we approach?                                                                               TK: It is because we bring along the Celestial Edict which emanates a dazzling aureola that frightens them.                                                                                                                                                  YT: Is it true every year, in the 7th month, all of the souls in hell are released temporarily so they can move around freely?                                                                                                                            TK: Not exactly. In the 7th month, the doors of the buildings at the Portico of Demons are only opened for the souls living in the Popular Quarter. They are “ordinary souls” who did neither good nor evil in their lifetime. In principle, they are not allowed to go out of their quarters, except on the occasion of the 30 days of amnesty in the 7th month. The regulations prescribe that all of the souls may leave their cells on the 15th of the 7th month to receive the gifts offered by the people of the living world. This day is called “Redemption days” by Buddhism or “Mid-Autumn Relief” by Taoism. Usually, the dignitaries of hell have a well-established time-table for their activities, but the length of these is not precise and this is the way they proceed. Yang Ts’ien, come quickly on the dais. We’re going to the Heart-Wrenching Prison.                                 YT: I’m ready, Master. You can start.                                                                                                          TK: We’re arrived. Let’s come down.                                                                                                          YT: The Mandarin-Governor is approaching for our encounter. Excellency, we are coming again to disturb you, and hope to be further informed by you.                                                                         The Mandarin: No civility, please. Since it is the 7th month, all of the alleys of hell are jammed, and moving around must have been difficult for you, I suppose.                                                       TK: That’s the least of things. We notice that outside the prisons, the souls are enthusiastic and free.                                                                                                                                                                     The Mandarin: Please come inside for better observation. I will furnish you necessary documents for your book of moral guidance for mankind.                                                                   YT: Thank you very much, Excellency. I see in the cells of the prison some sinful souls who cry and moan more terribly than they used to. I wonder why?                                                                      The Mandarin: Simply because in the 7th month, every inculpable soul called “ordinary” is authorized to go out of his cell, whereas the others are not. That’s why the latter are so despondent, they cry and groan all the more. When in life, they did hear of the 7th month as the time when the souls in hell were set free, but they failed to know that the souls with heavy sins would not be granted such clemency. The infernal guards, as impassible as ever, carry out their punishment which makes the souls more unhappy than ever. If humans don’t behave honestly, do good acts and avoid committing sins, they will be condemned in this place. Since they can’t hide their crimes, they will be punished and will lose their freedom. Since your time is limited, I shall have some souls come for the interview.                                                                                          YT: Thank you, Excellency. The guards of hell are pitiless. They use sharp edged cutlasses to open the souls’ chests, blood is streaming. Oh, It’s an atrocious sight! I simply can’t witness it any longer!                                                                                                                                                       The Mandarin: I have had two souls come. Look here! You are to declare all that you did in your lifetime so Buddha Tse Kong and Mr. Yang Ts’ien can take necessary notes for writing a book on hell.                                                                                                                                                              The soul: I am really ashamed of myself. I was at a mature age when my wife left the world. I was obsessed by carnal desires. One day, I met a young girl on a deserted field near the village. The swine of Epicurus awakened in me. I seized her in my arms and dragged her into a sugar cane plantation. The young girl yelled, struggled with all her might and implored me to let her go. Yet, I had lost all common sense, I intimidated her all the more and threatened to kill her. Finally, she yielded and let me rape her. Later on, I felt remorseful for my act. The young girl didn’t lodge a complaint against me, but I detested myself, and quite often, I scolded myself. A little while later, I died of a disease, and my soul came down to hell. The King of Hell was highly infuriated upon seeing me. Since I didn’t deny my sin and confessed all my wrongdoing, I didn’t have to stand before the Mirror Revelator of Past Crimes anymore. I was condemned to ten years of detention in the Heart-Wrenching Prison. My heart, being so greedy with sensual voluptuousness and rape, has been cut out. Until now, I have endured four years of torture. I know it’s too late for repentance.                                                                                                                 The Mandarin: To rape a girl is to ruin her life, and this is a grave sin. Though your repentance may appear sincere, you can’t be forgiven because you had, of your own will, jumped into the divine net. You can reproach neither God nor anybody else. I therefore advise the people who have committed such crime to repent in time, and confess their sin to the deities, from a sworn faith, or print and distribute 1000 volumes of this book “Voyages to Hell” in order to help humans back to the right path. They will then be granted some clemency and spared the punishment of hell. I order another soul to narrate his past crime.                                                        The soul: I suffer so horribly that I can hardly express myself. In my lifetime, I committed a severe crime. The terrific pains I am undergoing seem unending. I supplicate Buddha Tse Kong to rescue me.                                                                                                                                                      TK: You were passionately lustful in your life. Now, in your death, you have to reap the sour fruit of your bad behavior. The law of karma is strict. I can’t do anything for you.                           The soul: I am so miserable. If the Very Venerable Tse Kong refuses to save me, I am reduced to continue my sufferings. In life, I was a taxicab-driver. I often committed foolish acts, because I was rather ill-bred. Being of lascivious nature, I used to hang pornographic pictures in my car and I installed a radio set in it. Every time I had a lone woman passenger in my car, I began to court her. If she insulted me and called me an impudent monster, I felt more flattered than abashed and sought to rape her. Late one night, I carried a woman whose great beauty excited my sexual desires. I switched on my radio loudly, accelerated my speed and drove my car to a deserted place. There, I took out my jack-knife, and while menacing her with it, I succeeded to rape her. This stratagem of mine had been repeated three times in my life. Five years ago, unfortunately I was killed in a car-accident. I was immediately arrested by buffalo-headed and horse-faced demons who tethered me with iron chains and led me to hell. After judgement of the King of Hell, I was condemned to 30 years of imprisonment in the heart-wrenching prison of the 5th Palace. At present, I suffer excessively, but it is too late for me to repent. Mr. Yang Ts’ien, please, I hope that upon your return to the Temple of the Sages, you will warn humans not to commit the same sin as mine. If they do, they will not be able to repent in time, and will endure extremely frightful and unbearable punishment in hell. I have been reproaching myself for my stupidity in committing such a sin. By no means can I be freed from its consequences.                  The Mandarin: The past misdeeds of this soul were really damnable. His life was reduced by 10 years. After expiration of his term in this prison, he will be sent to the Eternal Prison where every hope of release and reincarnation is cancelled. Humans must be aware of this fact and avoid committing the sin of sexual greed. This is the gravest sin among thousands of others. As a rule, rape and illegitimate sexual relations are never forgiven by the laws of hell, and the sinners have no chance of escape.                                                                                                                    TK: Compared with the other punishment, heart-wrenching is the most painful. May earthly man be aware of it and not be so blinded of committing lustful sins. If they do, they will suffer this torment after their death. It’s quite late, Yang Ts’ien. Let’s go back to the Temple.                     YT : Our great thanks to His Excellency, and to the Generals.                                                                 TK : Quickly on the dais.                                                                                                                                 YT : I am on. Let’s set off.                                                                                                                                  TK: Here we come. Get down and run to your body.