00171 There's Only One Way to Liberate Oneself from the Three Worlds
00171 There's Only One Way to Liberate Oneself from the Three Worlds
No. 00171
Category / Lecture Tours-Asia
Event date / 1987.02.11
Place / (Formosa/Taiwan)Penghu
Language / Chinese
Translation / Taiwanese
Time (mins) / 1h18m32s(Translation) 1h07m43s(No Translation)
Publication No. / "The Immediate Key of Enlightenment", Chinese version(vol.2)
Part 1
Part 2
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  • Summary

No matter what religion or sect they are in, people who are truly searching for the Tao and practicing spiritually must get liberated from life and death and go beyond the Three Worlds. We have to know how to get liberation from the Three Worlds-this is the most important issue right now. We don't have to concern ourselves with trivial matters such as which religion is good or bad; all we need to know is the "Way", the "path".

The "Tao" is forever there; it is not that we have to find or develop the "Tao" through spiritual practice. The Tao is our "Buddha Nature" that we originally had; once the door is opened, we can see it. It's just like the sun and the moon that are already there outside, but we can't see them at all because the door is closed. We can see them immediately once the door is open. We can open the door by ourselves if we know where it is. But if we don't know, we should find someone who knows who may help open it for us, or teach us how to open it, or tell us where the door is and how to open it so that we can see the sun and the moon right away. This is called "immediate enlightenment" in Zen Buddhism, and that's what is meant by "see Buddha when the flowers are in bloom" in the scriptures and "attaining the Tao" or "seeing the Tao" in Taoism.

The Tao is called the "Quan Yin Method" in the Surangama Sutra, and also "Quan Yin" in the Universal Gate Sutra, which doesn't mean oral recitation of Quan Yin Bodhisattva's name, but the method of sound meditation. Moreover, it is known as "infinite light" in Pure Land Buddhism, and "wisdom" and "inner power" in Zen Buddhism.



  1. Master said, "When I say 'master', it isn't because I am arrogant and think I am your master. No. I use the word 'Master' because I do not use this ordinary 'I' when talking to you in a lecture." So, what is the meaning of real 'Master'?
  2. There is a door in our body which can be opened and there within are Buddha and the Western Pure Land. Why is the door not open?
  3. If we want to be connected with Amitabha Buddha, would our wishes be fulfilled? Does it have anything to do with our merit and good deeds we have done?
  4. What religion does Master belong to? Is it Pure Land? Is it Zen? Or Tian-tai? Cao-dong or Lin-ji School of Buddhism?
  5. All religions and sects teach people to first find the "Tao" before they can go up. What is the "Tao"?
  6. Originally there were no religious sects; there was only "the method" or "Tao". Then how did all the religions and sects begin?
  7. What is the best language? Is it true that "no words are required to practice Zen"? If so how do we communicate without language?
  8. We hear people talking about "water" without drinking it. Is it a waste of time listening to them? Are they telling lies?
  9. How do we recite Buddha's names and gain experiences of Amitabha Buddha?
  10. How can we stay focused?
  11. What is real alms-giving ?

*This inspiring discourse was recorded during the early years when Supreme Master Ching Hai give public lectures. Although the quality of recording was less than perfection due to limited preparation and lack of advanced equipment at that time. Please pardon us for imperfect audio quality at times.