JiGong - The Heavenly Teacher of Tao
 
 
 
JiGong is a very popular deity worshipped by Taoist in the Taoist temple. He was the reincarnation of one of the 18 Arhats and he dressed like a beggar. 
 
This is a short story of the legend during the Song Dynasty.
 
He was born to a comfortable family and as a baby, the abbot Xingkong named him Xiuyuan after seeing from vision that he was the reincarnation of the Arhat Xiang Long. He was an outstanding student and knew all the classics but his parents passed away when he was sixteen. As a result he had to live with his uncle and after three years of mourning he left and traveled around the country. By the time he arrived at Hangzhou, he had spent all his money and he decided to be a monk at Lingyin temple. The abbot was Yuankong and after accepting him as his disciple he named him Taoji.
 
He walked thousands of miles without a penny and a roof under his head preaching the truth. A man of boundless virtues and performed many miracles to help the unfortunate and punished the wicked and the unscrupulous as well as using his power to destroy evil spirits and monsters.
 
In the temple of Tao of Heaven, he was appointed by Lao Mu to be the Heavenly Teacher in order to save the three worlds. He said this is the first time he was appointed to save the three worlds and initially he was not sure how to do so.
 
The sixty-fourth Patriarch, Dignitary Master Chang Tienzen of Jining, Shantung Province was the rebirth of JiGong. He was born on the 19th day of the 7th lunar month in the 13th year of the reign of Guangshu (1889) during the Ching Dynasty. He received the seat of Generational Master in the 19th year of the Republic (1930). He returned to Heaven in Mid Autumn Festival ( 15th day of the 8th lunar month ) in the 36th year of the Republic (1947). The devotees of Tao of Heaven addressed him as ‘Tien Ran Ku Fo,’ a title bestowed by Lao Mu upon his return to Heaven. The word ‘Fo’ means Buddha so he is also addressed as the Living Buddha in the Tao of Heaven.
 
His final test from the 63rd Patriarch before he was chosen to be the 64th Patriarch was a final meal of vegetarian foods amongst many main disciples of the 63rd Patriarch Lutzu Chung Yi. Lutzu said that Heaven allowed them to start eating meat; they shall all then start taking meat after a long period of vegetarianism. Let’s celebrate and have a meal of meat and meat was cooked and then Lutzu took the meat. All the main disciples seeing Lutzu ate, they followed him but Chang Tienzen pretended to have stomach ache and went to the toilet. He took a long time to ease himself and by the time he returned everybody had finished. He gave reason that he had no appetite because of his stomach problem. He passed the test and was given the Heavenly Decree to carry on the salvation of mankind. His left hand had a red mark of the sun and his right hand had the mark of the moon and when he was born the Yellow River went clear signifying a birth of a sage.

 


Master Chang  Tienzen
Reincarnation of JiGong

 

 

Master JiGong