Poems and quotations from Journey to the West

Chapter One

The Divine Root Conceives and the Spring Breaks Forth
As the Heart's Nature Is Cultivated, the Great Way Arises
Before Chaos was divided, Heaven and Earth were one;
All was a shapeless blur, and no men had appeared.
Once Pan Gu destroyed the Enormous Vagueness
The separation of clear and impure began.

Living things have always tended towards humanity;
From their creation all beings improve.
If you want to know about Creation and Time,
Read Difficulties Resolved on the Journey to the West.

This country is next to an ocean, and in the middle of the ocean is a famous island called the Mountain of Flowers and Fruit. This mountain is the ancestral artery of the Ten Continents, the origin of the Three Islands; it was formed when the clear and impure were separated and the Enormous Vagueness was divided. It is a really splendid mountain and there are some verses to prove it:
It stills the ocean with its might,
It awes the jade sea into calm. It stills the ocean with its might:
Tides wash its silver slopes and fish swim into its caves.
It awes the jade sea into calm:
Amid the snowy breakers the sea-serpent rises from the deep.
It rises high in the corner of the world where Fire and Wood meet;

Its summit towers above the Eastern Sea.
Red cliffs and strange rocks;
Beetling crags and jagged peaks.
On the red cliffs phoenixes sing in pairs;
Lone unicorns lie before the beetling crags.
The cry of pheasants is heard upon the peaks;
In caves the dragons come and go.

There are deer of long life and magic foxes in the woods;
Miraculous birds and black cranes in the trees.
There are flowers of jade and strange plants that wither not;
Green pine and bluish cypress ever in leaf,
Magic peaches always in fruit.
Clouds gather round the tall bamboo.
The wisteria grows thick around the mountain brook
And the banks around are newly-coloured with flowers.
It is the Heaven-supporting pillar where all the rivers meet,
The Earth's root, unchanged through a myriad aeons.

Happy land of the Mountain and Flowers and Fruit, Cave Heaven of the Water Curtain.

We can hide there from the wind,
And shelter from the rain,
With nothing to fear from frost and snow,
And never a rumble of thunder.

The coloured mists glow bright
And the place smells lucky.
The pine and bamboo will always be beautiful,
And rare flowers blossom every day.

Gentleman, a man who breaks his word is worthless. Just now you said that if anyone was clever
enough to come in here and get out again in one piece, you’d make him king.
Well, then, I’ve come in and gone out, and gone out and come in.

Spirit-Tower Heart Mount, Cave of the Setting Moon and the Three Stars.

He saw the Patriarch Subhuti sitting on the dais with 2 rows of fifteen minor immortals standing below it.

Chapter Two

Heavenly flowers fell in profusion,
While golden lotuses burst forth from the earth.
Brilliantly he expounded the doctrine of the Three Vehicles,
Setting forth ten thousand Dharmas in all their details.
As he slowly waved his whisk, jewels fell from his mouth,
Echoing like thunder and shaking the Nine Heavens.
Now preaching the Way,
Now teaching meditation,
He showed that the Three Beliefs are basically the same.
In explaining a single word he brought one back to the truth,
And taught the secrets of avoiding birth and understanding one's nature.

“It's hard, hard, hard. The Way is very obscure,
Don't make light of the Gold and the Cinnabar.
To teach miraculous spells to any but the Perfect Man,
Is to tire the voice and dry the tongue in vain.”

“True spells, revealing secrets and all powerful,
Are the only sure way of protecting one's life.
They all come from essence, vapour, and spirit,
Must be stored away securely, and never be divulged.

Must never be divulged, and be stored in the body,
Then the Way I teach you will flourish of itself.
Many are the benefits of learning spells:
They give protection from evil desires and make one pure.

Make one pure with a dazzling radiance
Like a bright moon shining on a cinnabar tower.
The moon contains a Jade Rabbit, the sun a Golden Crow,
The Tortoise and the Snake are always intertwined.

Always intertwined, then life is firm,
And one can plant golden lotuses in fire.
Grasp all the Five Elements and turn them upside down,
And when you are successful you can become a Buddha, or an Immortal.”

The patriarch asked, which would you prefer to learn, the thirty-six heavenly transformations
or the seventy-two earthly ones?

The Monkey king practiced and trained until he mastered the seventy-two earthly transformations.

Many are the famous mountains in the world,
And many the flowers that bloom and wither on them.
But this scenery is eternal,
Unchanging through the four seasons.
It is truly the mountain from which the Three Worlds spring,
The Cave in the Belly of the Water that nourishes the Five Elements.

If you are cultivating your conduct,
the subtle vapours escape when you open your mouth,
and when you wag your tongue, trouble starts.

The whole household was happy. My word!
By uniting themselves with a single surname
They are waiting to be transferred to the Register of Immortals.

Chapter Three

The Kings of various kinds of monsters, seventy-two in all, all came to pay homage to the Monkey King.

Chapter Four

Change, yelled Nezha in a passion, and at once he had three heads and six arms. In his hands he held six weapons, a demon-beheading sword, a demon-hacking cutlass, a demon-binding rope, a demon-quelling pestle, an embroidered ball and a fire wheel.

Watch as the Monkey King returns to the mountain in triumph to receive the congratulations
of the seventy-two kings of the monsters and his six sworn brothers.

Chapter Five

To kill ten thousand of the enemies you must lose three thousand of your own.

Chapter Seven

Wealth and honour, glory and fame,
Are predetermined by fate:
No one should act against conscience to covet any of them.
Far-going and deep
Are the good results of true enlightenment and loyalty.
Heaven punishes all wild and wicked deeds
If not at once then later on.
Ask the Lord of the East the reason why
Disasters now strike him.
It is because his ambition was high, his plans far-reaching,
He did not respect authority, and he smashed convention.

Horse and ape together make mind and thought;
Bind them tightly together, and do not seek elsewhere.
When the ten thousand phenomena are reduced to truth they follow a single pattern;

The Buddha turned his hand over and pushed the Monkey King out through the Western Gate of Heaven. He turned his five fingers into a mountain chain belonging to the elements Metal, Wood, Water, Fire, and Earth, renamed them the Five Elements Mountain, and gently held him down.

The Jade Emperor then ordered all the gods of the Department of Thunder to split up and invite the Three Pure Ones, the Four Emperors, the Five Ancients, the Six Superintendents, the Seven Main Stars, the Eight Points of the Compass, the Nine Bright Shiners, the Ten Chiefs, the Thousand Immortals, and the Ten Thousand Sages to a banquet to thank the Buddha for his mercy.

The dear Great Sage hurriedly braced himself to jump, but the Buddha turned his hand over and pushed the Monkey King out through the Western Gate of Heaven. He turned his five fingers into a mountain chain belonging to the elements Metal, Wood, Water, Fire, and Earth, renamed them the Five Elements Mountain,
and gently held him down.

The Buddha produced from his sleeve a strip of paper on which were written the golden words Om Mani Padme Hum. He gave this piece of paper to Ananda and told him to stick it on the summit of the Five Elements Mountain.

An egg learned to be a man,
Cultivated his conduct, and achieved the Way.
Heaven had been undisturbed for the thousand kalpas,
Until one day the spirits and gods were scattered.
The rebel against Heaven, wanting high position,
Insulted Immortals, stole the pills, and destroyed morality.

I have practiced many a method for obtaining eternal life,
Infinite are the transformations I have learned.
That is why I found the mortal world too cramped,
And decided to live in the Jade Heaven.
None can reign forever in the Hall of Miraculous Mist;
Kings throughout history have had to pass on their power.
The strong should be honored—he should give way to me:
This is the only reason I wage my heroic fight.

To the ape's immortal body is matched a human mind:
That the mind is an ape is deeply meaningful.

Chapter Eight

Propitious vapours filled Paradise,
Rainbows surround the Venerable One.
The Western Paradise, known as the best,
Is ruled by the dharma King of non-phenomenon.
Black apes are always offering fruit,
Deer hold flowers in their mouths;
Blue phoenixes dance,
Coloured birds call;
Sacred turtles offer long life,
Immortal cranes present magic mushrooms.
Here they peacefully enjoy the Pure Land of the Jetavana Park,
The infinite realms of the Dragon Palace.
Every day flowers bloom,
Fruit is always ripe.
Through practicing silence they return to the truth,
Achieving reality by contemplation.
There is no birth nor death;
They neither wax nor wane.
Mists follow them as they come and go;
Untouched by heat or cold, they do not notice the years.

“These precious things are called 'tight bands,'“ he told the Bodhisattva as he handed them to her. “Although all three of them look the same, they have different uses. I also have three Band-Tightening Spells. If you meet any devils with great magic powers on your journey you should persuade them to reform and become the disciples of the pilgrim who will come to fetch the scriptures. If they do not do as they are told these bands should be put on their heads, where they will of themselves take root in the flesh. If the appropriate spell for each one is recited the victim's eyes will bulge, his head will ache, and his forehead will split open. He will thus be certainly induced to adopt our religion.”

“Give this cassock and staff to him who will come to fetch the scriptures: they are for him to use. If he is determined to come here, he can avoid the Wheel of Reincarnation by wearing this cassock,
and he will be free from evil if he carries this staff.”

With my deep insight I surveyed the Three Worlds.
The origin of nature
Is ultimately emptiness,
Like the great void,
Containing nothing at all.

If you try to ask about the dhyana
Or investigate the innumerable
You will waste your life and achieve nothing.
Polishing bricks to make mirrors,
Or piling up snow to turn it into grain—
However many years have you wasted like that?
A hair can contain an ocean,
A mustard-seed can hold a mountain,
And the golden Kasyapa only smiles.
When you are awakened you will surpass the Ten Stages and the Three Vehicles,
And stop the four kinds of life and the six ways.
Who has ever heard, before the cliff of thoughts extinguished,
Under the tree that has no shadow,
The sound of the cuckoo in a spring dawn?
The path by the Cao Stream is dangerous,
The Vulture Peak is high in the clouds:
Here the voice of the ancients was a mystery.
On a cliff ten thousand feet high
Five-leaved lotuses bloom
As scent coils round the shutters of the old palace.
At that time
Your knowledge smashes all the currents of thought;
The Dragon King and the Three Treasures can be seen.

“The sacred scriptures say,” Guanyin replied, '“If one's words are good, they will meet with a response from even a thousand miles away; if they are bad, they will be opposed from the same distance.

Chapter Eleven

These are the ghosts of the kings and chieftains of the sixty-four groups of rebels
and the seventy-two troops of bandits.

Excellent, truly excellent,
The virtuous come to no harm.
The good heart is always mindful,
The way of goodness always lies open.
Do not allow evil thoughts to arise;
Thus you will avoid all trouble.
Say not that there is no retribution;
Whetheryou become a god or a ghost is all determined.

“When Your Majesty returns to the world of the living you absolutely must hold a Great Mass to enable those forlorn ghosts to be reborn,” replied the judge. “Don't on any account forget, as there can only be peace on Earth if there are no vengeance-seeking ghosts in the underworld. Every single wrong will have to be corrected. Teach all people to be good, and then you will be able to assure the continuity of your line
and the eternal security of your empire.”

Chapter Twelve

I have the three stores of the Buddha’s law of the Great Vehicle, which can save the dead, deliver from suffering, and ensure that the body will live forever without coming to harm.

Why are you only talking about the doctrine of the Little Vehicle, monk? Can you preach about the Great Vehicle?” “That doctrine of the Little Vehicle of yours will never bring the dead to rebirth; it's only good enough for a coarse sort of enlightenment. Now I have the Three Stores of the Buddha's Law of the Great Vehicle that will raise the dead up to Heaven, deliver sufferers from their torments,
and free souls from the eternal coming and going.”

There is a poem that goes:
“Great are the Three Jewels, and honoured be the Way;
The Four Kinds of Life and Six Paths are all explained. 
Whoever knows and teaches the law of Man and Heaven,
Can pass on the lamp of wisdom when he sees his original nature.
It protects the body and makes it a world of gold,
Leaves body and mind pure as an ice-filled jar of jade.
Ever since Buddha made his cassock
No one will ever dare to end the priesthood.”

This cassock
Is normally kept folded,
And will only be worn by a sage.
When kept folded,
A rainbow shines through its thousand layers of wrapping;
When it is worn by a sage,
It will astonish the heavenly spirits and scare all demons.
On top is an as-you-wish pearl,
A Mani Pearl,
A dust-repelling pearl,
And a wind-calming pearl;
There is also red agate,
Purple coral,
Night-shining pearls,
And relics of the Buddha.
They steal the white of the moon,
Rival the sun in redness.
Their magic essence fills the sky,
Their auspicious light honors the sage.
Their magic essence fills the sky,
Shining through the gates of Heaven;
Their auspicious light honors the sage,
Illuminating the whole world.
Shining on mountains and rivers,
The essence frightens tigers and leopards;
Illuminating oceans and islands,
The light startles fishes and dragons.
At the side are two rows of gold-pla

Chapter Fourteen

Buddha is the mind, the mind is Buddha,
Mind and Buddha have always needed things.
When you know that there are no things and no mind,
Then you are a Buddha with a true mind and a Dharma Body.

I've got a spell called True Words to Calm the Mind, or the Band-tightening Spell. You must learn it in secret, and be sure to keep it to yourself. Never leak it to anyone. I'll go and catch up with the monkey and send him back to you, and you can give him that tunic and hat to wear. If he's disobedient again, all you have to do is recite the spell quietly. That will stop him committing any more murders or running away again.”

The Buddha of the West lives in the Great Thunder Monastery in the land of India, one hundred and eight thousand miles away from here. You'll never get there, just you and your horse, without a companion or disciple.

Chapter Fifteen

The great truth landed on the opposite bank,
The sincere heart and complete nature climbed Vulture Peak.

Chapter Sixteen

Don't let greedy and treacherous men see rare or amusing things.' If he lays his eyes on it, his mind will be disturbed, and if his mind is disturbed, he's bound to start scheming.

Don`t worry, Gods are watching over you in secret.

Chapter Seventeen

In peaceful retirement deep in the hills, one is free of vulgar worries;
Dwelling quietly in a magic cave, happy in divine simplicity.

Great have been my magic powers since childhood;
Changing with the wind, I show my might.
Nourishing my nature and cultivating the truth,
I have lived out the days and months,
Saving my life by jumping beyond the cycle of rebirth.
Once I searched sincerely for the Way
Climbing the Spirit Terrace Mountain to pick medicinal herbs.
On that mountain lives an ancient Immortal
One hundred and eight thousand years old.
I took him as my master,
Hoping that he would show me a road to immortality.
He said that the elixir is in one's own body—
It is a waste of effort to seek it outside.
I learned a great spell of immortality.
I could scarcely have survived without it.
Turning my gaze inwards, I sat and calmed my mind,
While the sun and moon in my body intermingled.
Ignoring the affairs of the world, I made my desires few,
When senses, body, and mind were purified, my body was firm.
Reversing the years and returning to youth is then easily done;
The road to immortality and sagehood was not long.
In three years I acquired a magic body,
That did not suffer like a common one.
I wandered around the Ten Continents and Three Islands,
The corners of the sea and the edge of the sky.
I was due to live over three hundred years
But could not yet fly up to the Nine Heavens.
I got a real treasure for subduing sea dragons:
An iron cudgel banded with gold.
On the Mountain of Flowers and Fruit
I was supreme commander;
In the Water Curtain Cave
I assembled the fiendish hosts.
The Great Jade Emperor sent me a decree
Conferring high rank and the title 'Equaling Heaven'.
More than once I wrecked the Hall of Miraculous Mist,
And stole the Queen Mother's peaches several times.
A hundred thousand heavenly soldiers in serried ranks
Came with spears and swords to put me down.
I sent the heavenly kings back up there in defeat,
Made Nazha flee in pain at the head of his men.
The True Lord Erlang, skilled at transformations,
Lao Zi, Guanyin and the Jade Emperor
Watched me being subdued from the Southern Gate of Heaven.
As he was given some help by Lord Lao Zi,
Erlang captured me and took to Heaven.
I was tied to the Demon-subduing Pillar,
And divine soldiers were ordered to cut off my head.
Though hacked with swords and pounded with hammers
I remained unharmed.
So then I was struck with thunder and burned with fire.
As I really do have magic powers,
I was not in the slightest bit afraid.
They took me to Lao Zi's furnace to be refined.
The Six Dings roasted me slowly with divine fire.
When the time was up and the furnace opened, out I jumped,
And rushed round Heaven, my cudgel in my hand.
No one could stop me making trouble everywhere,
And I caused chaos in the thirty-three Heavens.
Then our Tathagata Buddha used his Dharma power
And dropped the Five Elements Mountain on my back.
There I was crushed for full five hundred years,
Until Sanzang came from the land of Tang.
Now I have reformed and am going to the West
To climb the Thunder Peak and see the Buddha.
Enquire throughout the Four Seas, Heaven and Earth:
You'll find that I'm the greatest monster ever.

Are you a Bodhisattva disguised as an evil spirit, or a Bodhisattva who really is an evil spirit?”
“Monkey,” she replied with a laugh, “evil spirit and Bodhisattva are all the same in the last analysis
— they both belong to non-being.”

Chapter Eighteen

Who knows when the journey will end as they find the true word?

Chapter Nineteen

We know prajna-paramita is a great, divine spell, a great enlightening spell, a supreme spell, and a spell without a parallel, that can do away with all sufferings without fail. Thus we recite the Prajna-paramita Spell and say:
Gate, gate, paragate, parasamgate, bodhi, svaha!

Amida Buddha, if I’m not completely sincere, cut me up in then thousand bits for breaking the laws of heaven.

As the Patriarch from the Tang had already the origins of enlightenment inside himself, he was able to remember the Heart Sutra after only one hearing, and it has been passed on down to this very day. This sutra is the kernel of the cultivation of the truth, and it is the gateway to becoming a Buddha.

Chapter Twenty

The journey will not be difficult,
If you try to follow my instructions.
There will be a thousand mountains, a thousand deep rivers.
Many evil miasmas, and many a devil.
If you reach the edge of the sky
Do not worry or be afraid.
If you come to Precipitous Cliff
Walk with your feet placed sideways.
Be careful in the Black Pine Forest,
Where many an evil fox may block your path.
The capital cities will be full of spirits,
And demon kings will live in the mountains.
Tigers will sit in the music rooms,
Wolves will be in charge of the accounts.
Lions and elephants will all be kings,
With tigers and leopards for ministers.
A wild boar will carry your luggage,
A water monster will lead the way.
A very old stone monkey
Has no cause to be angry.
Ask those friends of yours—
They know the way to the West.”

The Dharma is born in the mind,
And in turn is destroyed by the mind.
Who do life and death come from?
Decide for yourself.
If it is all from your own mind,
Why do you need others to tell you?
All you need to do is work hard,
Squeezing blood out of iron.
Thread a silken rope through your nose.
And fasten yourself to emptiness.
Tie it to the tree of non-action,
To prevent it from collapsing.
Don't acknowledge bandits as your sons,
Or you will forget the Dharma and the mind.
Do not allow yourself to be deceived by others—
Smash them first with a punch.
When the mind appears it is non-existent,
When the Dharma appears, it ceases.
When the boy and the ox both disappear,
The blue sky is absolutely clear.
All is as round as an autumn moon,
And this and that can no longer be distinguished.

When the patriarch was in danger from evil monsters,
Emotion and Nature combined to subdue the demons.

Chapter Twenty - two

The Bodhisattva sent for her disciple Huian and produced a red bottle-gourd from her sleeve. “Take this gourd,” she said, “and go with Sun Wukong to the Flowing Sands River. Shout'Wujing'—'Awakened to Purity'—and he'll come out. First take him to submit to the Tang Priest, and then make him thread his nine skulls on a string like the Sacred Palaces. If he puts this gourd in the middle of them, it will make a dharma boat
to ferry the Tang Priest across the river.”

I can cross a river like this with the twist of my waist,
but I’m afraid you’ll never be able to cross it in ten thousand years.

A most hideous evil spirit emerged from the water:
A head of matted hair, as red as fire,
A pair of staring eyes, gleaming like lamps.
An indigo face, neither black nor green,
A dragon's voice like drums or thunder.
On his body a cloak of yellow goose-down,
Tied at the waist with white creeper.
Nine skulls hung around his neck,
And in his hands was an enormous staff.

As the old saying goes, 'Mount Tai is as easy to move as a mustard seed,
but a mortal cannot be dragged away from the earthly dust.'

Chapter Twenty - Three

It's always said that 'a monk among pretty women is a hungry ghost,'

Chapter Twenty - Four

The mountain was called the Mountain of Infinite Longevity, and there was a Taoist temple on it , called the Wuzhuang temple. The temple had a rare treasure, a miraculous tree that had been formed when primeval chaos was first being divided, before the separation of Heaven and Earth. It took three thousand years to blossom, three thousand years to form the fruit, and three thousand years for the fruit to ripen, so that nearly ten thousand years had to pass, before the fruit could be eaten. Only thirty fruit were formed each ten thousand years, and they were shaped like newborn babies, complete with limbs and sense organs. Anyone whose destiny permitted him to smell one, would live for three hundred and sixty years., and if you ate one you would live
for forty-seven thousand years.

How far are we from Thunder Monastery, elder brother?” asked Friar Sand. “One hundred and eight thousand li,” Monkey replied, “and we haven't covered a tenth of it.” “Tell me, Monkey! how long will it take to reach Vulture Peak?” asked Sanzang. “If you went from childhood to old age,” said Monkey, “and from old age back to childhood again, and you did it a thousand times over, you'd still find it hard to get there. But if you see your true nature, are determined to be sincere, and always remember to turn your head back to enlightenment, then you will have reached Vulture Peak.”

Chapter Twenty - Seven

The evil spirit went forward to seize him, but the sight of the two great generals to Sanzang's left and right made it frightened to close in on him. Who, it wondered, were they? They were in fact Pig and Friar Sand,
and for all that their powers were nothing extraordinary.

Chapter Thirty - One

If wild thoughts are not firmly suppressed
There is no point in seeking for the Truth;
If you wish to cultivate your nature before the Buddha,
Why stay halfway between awakening and confusion?
Once awakened you can achieve the Right in an instant;
The confused will drift for ten thousand aeons.
If you can invoke the Buddha and cultivate the Truth,
Sins countless as the Ganges sands can be wiped out.

'Every bite and every sip is preordained,' as the saying goes.

Chapter Thirty - Two

Wipe the dust off your mind,
Wash out the dirt from your ear.
Without the most terrible suffering
You cannot be a great man.'

Chapter Thirty - Three

The junior demon shook himself and changed into an aged Taoist.
This is what he looked like:
A gleaming star-hat,
Unkempt white hair,
An embroidered belt round a cloak of feathers,
Cloud sandals tied with yellow coir,
Clear of spirit and bright-eyed as an immortal,
Strong and light like one who will live forever,
He could be compared to the Taoist Riding a Buffalo,
But is more like the Master of the White Scroll.
This false image could be a real one;
His deception appears to be the truth.

The Legal Code says that you cannot be punished for what you are unaware of.

Chapter Thirty - Four

Great are the powers of the seventy-two transformations;
Greatest of all is the art of improvisation.

Chapter Thirty - Five

One of those two demons was a servant boy who looked after my golden furnace, and the other a servant who looked after my silver furnace. They stole my treasures and came down to the mortal world. I could not find them anywhere. You have done a very good deed in capturing them.”“You're very rude indeed, old fellow,” said the Great Sage. “You deserve to be charged with laxity for allowing members of your household to become evil spirits.”“Don't blame the wrong person,” said Lord Lao. “It was nothing to do with me. It was the Bodhisattva from the sea who asked me for the loan of them three times, and sent them here to be turned into monsters to test whether your master and his disciples truly wanted to go to the West.”

If we are all able gently to raise the 'double eight' and achieve it in nine by nine days, it will be easy to see the Buddha and easy to go home again too.

Chapter Thirty - Seven

Sanzang took a step forward, joined his hands in front of his chest, and said, “Your Royal Highness, how many great kindnesses does a man receive on earth?“Four,” the prince replied. “What are they?” Sanzang asked. “There is the kindness that heaven and earth show by covering and supporting him,” said the prince. “There is the kindness of the sun and moon in giving him light. There is the kindness of his monarch in giving him land and water. And there is the kindness of his parents who rear him.”

Chapter Thirty - Nine

The reason I’ve come to pay my respects to you is because there’s no other place I can get the King revived. I beg you, great Partriarch, in your mercy lend me a thousand of your Nine-cycle Soul-returning Pills to save him.

Every mouthful we eat or drink is predestined.

Chapter Forty

As the old saying has it, “The court cannot be without a Monarch for a single day”.

They had been traveling for the best part of a month, when the Master and disciples saw a mountain in front of them that touched the sky and blotted out the sun. I’m sure there must be evil creatures lurking on it to catch us, so be on your guard, said the Master.

The splendid evil spirit then conjured up a whirlwind in mid-air and scooped the Tang Priest up in his wind.

High fiendish dangers face high virtue;
The stillness of meditation gives rise to evil spirits.
When the Heart Lord is upright and takes the middle way,
Wood's mother foolishly treads the wrong path.

The Thought-horse silently nurses desires,
The Yellow Wife wordlessly worries and grieves.
When the stranger prospers he rejoices in vain;
From just this place must one vanish.

There’s one kind of python that has an amazing knowledge of the names people had as children, If you don’t reply when it calls out your name you’ll be fine; but if you answer a single word it’ll grab your soul and will surely come and kill you the next day.

Chapter Forty - Two

The splendid Bodhisattva pointed downwards with her sprig of willow and called. “back”. The colours and auspicious glow of the lotus thrown all disappeard, leaving the demon king sitting on the points of swords.

The Bodhisattva said the spell.
She made magic with her hands
and recited the words silently several times over.
The evil spirit twisted and tugged at his ears and cheeks,
stamped his feet and rolled around.
Indeed, one phrase unites all the words without number;
Boundless and deep is the strength of the dharma.

The Bodhisattva then pointed her sprig of willow down once more, said the magic word “Om” and turned all Pole Star swords into halberds with inverted barbs like wolf’s teeth that could not be pulled out.
This finally made the demon desperate.

Chapter Forty - Three

This is the way to repel the Six Bandits that attack eye, ear, nose, tongue, body and mind. If you keep on inviting the Six Bandits in over and over again, how can you ever expect to reach the Western Heaven
and see the Buddha?

The river god did a water-stopping magic to hold the waters back. In an instant a broad road opened up where the waters had withdrawn; master and disciples crossed to the west bank, climbed it,
thanked the river god and continued their way.

Chapter Forty - Six

Hard is the gaining of life and hard is its end;
Elixir never refine without true instruction.
Vainly the spirits are raced and water-spells made;
Pills that can make you immortal are only a fiction.
Nirvana can never be won by a mind in disorder;
Cunning is useless when all it can cause is destruction.
Had I been warned that all could so easily fail,
I'd have kept to the diet and chosen a life of inaction.”

Chapter Forty - Nine

A divine square-headed and extraordinary beast,
The miraculous creature, the immortal of the waters.
Wagging his tail he can live for many an age,
Hiding still and silent in the depths of the rivers.
Leaping through the waves he rushes to the bank,
Or lies beside the sea facing sun and wind.
He has mastered the true Way of nourishing his essence,
The Ancient Soft-shelled Turtle with his carapace of white.

Chapter Fifty

The heart must be frequently swept,
The dust of emotions removed,
Lest the Buddha be trapped in the pit.
Only when the essence is pure
Can the origin then be discussed.
Trim the candle of nature,
Breathe in the way that Master Caoxi taught,
Control the ape and horse of the mind.
Only when breath is calm by day and night
Can one achieve the true adept's skill.

The Way grew by one foot but the demon grew by ten.
Blinded and confused, they took the passions as their home.
Alas there was no place to be found for the dharma body:
In action and in thoughts they had made a great mistake. 

Chapter Fifty - Six

Master, I know that you haven't the patience to sit still, but I'll make a spell to keep you safe here.” With that he took out his gold-banded cudgel and in a flash he drew a circle on the ground with it. He asked the Tang priest to sit in the circle with Pig and Friar Sand standing on either side and the horse and luggage nearby. Then he put his palms together and said to the Tang Priest, “The circle I've drawn is stronger than a wall of bronze or iron. No tiger, leopard, wolf, demon, fiend or monster will dare come anywhere near it. But you must not step outside it. I guarantee that you'll come to no harm as long as you sit inside the circle; but once you leave it very nasty things will happen to you. Please, please, please stay inside it whatever happens.”

The heart that is empty of all things is said to be pure,
In utter placidity not giving rise to a thought.

By the time the bandits had sharpened their weapons and eaten a good meal,
It was the fifth watch and almost dawn.

Chapter Fifty - Seven

When the body is present but the soul flies of,
Nothing remains to keep it alive;
A furnace without fire can refine no cinnabar.
The yellow wife leaves the lord to seek the metal elder.
Wood’s mother puts on a sickly face to look after the master.
Who knows when this journey will ever end
Or when he will return from far away ?
The Five Elements give birth and yield to each other.
All is in disorder until the mind-ape comes back.

Chapter Fifty - Eight

A separation on the journey muddled the Five Elements;
At the demon-subduing, gathering enlightenment returned.
The spirit returned to the house of the mind and dhyana was calmed;
When the six perceptions were controlled the elixir was completed.

Troubles arise if one has two minds;
Doubts cloud everything from sea to sky.
One desired fine horses and the highest rank,
Craving for eminence at the royal court.
Fighting North and South without respite,
They party to east and west with never a pause.
In Dhyana the secret of mindlessness must be learned;
Nourish the babe in silence and form the holy foetus.

Chapter Fifty - Nine

The Tang priest is fated to succeed on this journey.

Chapter Sixty - One

If you make a detour, that would mean leaving the straight and narrow;
you’ll never cultivate your conduct that way.

The way grows by one foot, the demon by ten-thousand;
The cunning mind-ape puts him down by force,
If the fiery mountain flames are to be put out,
The precious fan must blow them cool.
The yellow wife is determined to protect the primal ancient;
The mother of wood is set on wiping out the demons.
When the Five Elements are harmonized they return to the tru e achievement;
Evil and dirt are refined away as they travel to the west.

Chapter Sixty - Two

Through all the hours it must never be forgotten;
When success is won all time will be put away.
For five years and sixty thousand miles
Do not let the holy water dry up,
Do not allow the fire to flag.
When water and fire are in balance no harm will arise;
The Five elements are joined as if with hooks.
Ying and Yang in harmony will climb the cloud tower,
Riding the phoenix to the purple palace,
And flying on the crane to magical Yingzhou.

Chapter Sixty - Four

“All four of you immortals have lived to most advanced ages.” Sanzang said. You are ancient, you have found the Way, you are elegant and you are pure. Are you not the Four Brilliant Ones of Han times?” “You flatter us too much,” said the four old men. “We're not the Four Brilliant Ones: we're the four from deep in the mountains.”

Chapter Sixty - Five

Wherever there's a Buddha there are scriptures;
Everywhere you go you'll find some treasures.

The cause and effect this time revealed
Should make you do what’s good and shun evil.
Once a thought is born
The intelligence is aware of it
And let’s it become action.
Do what is right while you’re still alive,
Do not just drift.
Recognize the root and the source,
Escape from the trunk and the husk.
If seeking long live you must grasp this.
Watch clearly at every moment,
Refine your thoughts.
Go throught the three passes, fill up the black sea;
The good will surely ride on the phoenix and the crane,
Then your gloom will change to compassion
As you ascend to absolute bliss.

Tang Sanzang’s thoughts were so pure that not only did the heavenly Gods protect him: even the nature spirits had taken him along a part of his journey for a night of elegant conversation,
thereby saving him from having to go through the thorns and brambles.

All things began to flower,
The handle of the Dipper returns to the east.
Everywhere the grass is green,
As are the leaves of the willows on the bank.

It was now the second of the nights five watches.

You seem to think that things matter more than people, why do you want to look for the luggage”? “Of course people are important”, Monkey said, “but things are more important”. In the luggage there's our passport, the brocade cassock and the golden begging bowl. They're all great treasures of the Buddhist faith,
and we must have them.”

With the way still uncomplete ape and horse were scattered;
When the mind was masterless the Five Elements lacked live.

Chapter Sixty - Six

Big ears, a broad jaw and a square face;
Wide shoulders, a deep chest and a fat body.
A jolly voice that was full of fun,
A pair of bright sparkling eyes.
His clothes hung open; luck was all about him.
His straw sandals comfortable and his spirits were high.
He was the Lord of the land of bliss,
The laughing monk Maitreya.

Your master and you disciples have not yet come to the end of the demons you will have to deal with. That is why every kind of spiritual creature has been coming down to earth. It's right that you should suffer.

Chapter Sixty - Eight

The heart has a secret prescription that will save a country;
The hidden and wonderful spell gives eternal life.

Chapter Sixty - Nine

The ancients said, 'In preparing medicines do not stick rigidly to the formulae; use them as appropriate.'

Chapter Seventy

Although my body is the body of an ape,
When young I mastered the paths of life and death.
1 visited all the great teachers who taught me their Way
And trained myself by night and day beside the mountain.
I took heaven as my roof and the earth as my furnace
And used both kinds of drug to complete the sun and moon,
Taking from positive and negative, joining fire and water,
Until suddenly I-was aware of the Mystic Pass.
1 relied entirely on the Dipper for success in my movements,
Shifting my steps by relying on the handle of that constellation.
When the time is right I lower or increase the heat,
Taking out lead and adding mercury, watching them both.
By grouping the Five Elements transformations are made;
Through combining the Four Forms the seasons can be distinguished.
The two vital forces returned to the zodiac;
The three teachings met on the golden elixir road.
When understanding of the laws came to the four limbs
The original somersault was given divine assistance.
With a single bound I could cross the Taihang mountains;
At one go I could fly across the Cloud-touching Ford.
A thousand steep ridges are no bother to me,
Nor hundreds of rivers as great as the Yangtse.
Because my transformations are impossible to stop
I can coverone hundred and eight thousand miles in a single leap.

Chapter Seventy - Two

When heaven and earth were first separated
There were ten suns in the sky
Till Yi, the fine archer,
Shot nine of the sun-crows down to the earth,
Leaving only one golden crow star,
The true fire of the sun.
The nine hot springs in heaven and earth
Are the other nine crows transformed.
These nine hot springs are
Cool Fragrance Spring,
Mountain-companions Spring
Warm Spring,
Donghe Spring,
Mount Huang Spring,
Xiao'an Spring,
Guangfen Spring,
Hot Water Spring,
And this Filth-cleansing Spring.
There is a poem about it that goes:
The same vital force runs in all four seasons;
spring continues throughout the autumn.
The scalding water bubbles like a cauldron;
The snow-white waves are boiling hot.
If the waters are spread they help the crops to grow;
Left where they are they wash worldly dust away.
Little bubbles spread out like pearls,
Rolling ones rise like pieces of jade.
It is rich and smooth although not wine,
Clear, calm and naturally warm.
The whole place thrives on its air of good omen:
It brings good fortune and the natural truth.
When the beauties wash their flesh is smooth as ice;
As dirt is soaked away their jade-like bodies are made new.

Chapter Seventy - Three

The splendid Great Sage brought his cloud down to land, made a spell with his fingers,
said the sacred syllable Om, and forced the old local god to come to him again.

While good deeds stay at home
Bad deeds are known far and wide.

Chapter Seventy - Four

However high the mountain there will be a way across;
However deep the river there's always a ferryman.

The story tells how Sanzang and his disciples, having broken through the net of desires and escaped from the prison-house of the emotions, let the horse travel West.

This little monkey has 72 faces.

Chapter Seventy - Seven

Only a true man can find the true scriptures;
The will's shouts and the heart's labors are in vain.

The splendid Great Sage jumped to his feet and went straight to India on his somersault cloud. In less than a couple of hours he could see the Vulture Peak in the near distance, and an instant later he had landed his cloud and was heading straight for the foot of the peak. The Tathagata Buddha was sitting on his nine-level lotus throne expounding the sutras to his eighteen arhats when he said, “Sun Wukong is here. You must all go out to receive him.” “Wukong,” said the Buddha, why aren`t you with the Tang priest”? “We have now reached the city of Leonia near Lion Cave on Lion Mountain where three vicious monsters, the Lion King, the Elephant King and the Great Roc, seized my master”, replied Monkey. “All of us disciples of his were in a very bad way too, tied up and put in a steamer to suffer the agony of fire and boiling water.” “You can't beat those evil spirits, said the Tathagata with a smile. Their magical powers are more than you can handle”. “I shall have to go and subdue that demon in person,” the Tathagata said. Monkey kowtowed as he respectfully replied, “I beg you to condescend to grant us your illustrious presence.”

Chapter Seventy - Eight

A single thought at once disturbs a hundred monsters;
The hardest efforts are all to no avail.
One can only wash away each speck of dust,
Tidy everything and polish well.
Sweep all causation away and come to nirvana;
Waste no time and destroy the thousand demons.
You surely will be free from obstructions,
And rise to the Daluo Heaven when your deeds are done.

His cassock was of brocade, set with exotic gems;
On his head he wore a gold-topped Vairocana mitre.
He held a nine-ringed monastic staff
And hid a divine radiance in his breast.
The passport was fastened tightly to his body,
Wrapped in brocade inside another cloth.
He moved like an arhat come down to earth;
His face was truly that of a living Buddha.

Chapter Eighty

Taking the knife, the imitation Tang Priest cut the skin of his stomach open with the knife in his right hand. There was a whoosh, and out rolled a whole pile of hearts. The imitation Tang Priest then held up the hearts one by one, each dripping with blood, for all to see. They included a loyal red heart, a pure white heart, a yellow heart, an avaricious heart, a fame-hungry heart, a jealous heart, a calculating heart, an over-competitive heart, an ambitious heart, an overbearing heart, a murderous heart, a vicious heart, a frightened heart, a cautious heart, a heretical heart and a heart full of indefinable gloom.

Chapter Eighty - Two

Divine energy is dispersed by an open mouth;
Trouble starts when the tongue begins to move.

Chapter Eighty - Five

Do not go far to seek the Buddha on Vulture Peak;
Vulture Peak is in your heart.
Everybody has a Vulture Peak stupa
Under which to cultivate conduct.”

“Of course I know it, disciple,” said Sanzang. “According to that quatrain the thousands of scriptures all come down to cultivating the heart.”

When the heart is purified it can shine alone;
When the heart is preserved all perceptions are pure.
If there is any mistake then laziness follows,
And success will not come in a myriad years.
As long as your will is sincere Thunder Peak is before your eyes.
But if you're as scared, frightened and disturbed as this
the Great Way is distant, and Thunder Peak is far, far away.”

As the ancient book says, 'When the father is present the son must do nothing on his own account.'

The splendid idiot, who could perform thirty-six transformations, went into a hollow on the mountainside, made a spell with his hands, said the magic words, shook himself and turned himself into a short, skinny monk, beating a wooden fish-shaped dram with his hand and mumbling, “Oh great one, oh great one,”
because he knew no scriptures to recite.

For ages now I've heard it said that the Tang Priest is an arhat who has cultivated his conduct for ten successive lifetimes. Anyone who eats a piece of his flesh will live for ever.

Not shifting her ropes, the evil spirit made the most of the wind being in the right direction to carry some high-pitched words of morality into the Tang Priest's ear. Do you know what she was shouting? “Master,” she called, “if you forget your conscience and refuse to save a living being's life what's the use of your fetching the scriptures from the Buddha?”

“If you're wanting to be charitable, Master,” Monkey replied, “you're incurable. Just think of all the demons you've met in all the mountains you've crossed on your journey West since leaving the East. They've often taken you into their caves and I've had to rescue you. I've killed tens of thousands of them with this iron cudgel of mine. So why can't you bring yourself to let a single devil die today? Why do you have to rescue her?”“Disciple,” the Tang Priest replied, “there's an old saying, 'Do not fail to do a good deed because it is small; do not commit a bad deed because it is small.' You're still to go and save her.”

Bring the Tang Priest here and tell the underlings to fetch water, scrub the cooking pot, fetch some firewood and light the fire. “When the Tangmonk been steamed we will each have a piece of his flesh and live for ever.”

Chapter Eighty - Seven

I implore you in your great mercy to give play to your divine powers and bring us deliverance.” Returning his courtesies, Sanzang said, “This is no place to talk. We will be able to act when we have gone to a monastery.”

After long drought the fields received sweet rain
Merchants were travelling along all watercourses.
They were deeply moved by the monks who had come to the city,
And by the Great Sage who had gone up to Heaven.
(The three things had now been accomplished;
Evil was removed from the three things;
One thought had brought all back to the good.
From now on all longed for a new golden age
(With ideal weather and good harvests for ever.
With ten thousand years of abundant harvests
Through the five winds and ten kinds of rain.

Chapter Ninety - One

Bodhisattva Guanyin appeared during the mass and informed me that in the Thunder Monastery in the Western Heaven there are three stores of true scriptures that can carry the dead up to Heaven. I was sent to fetch them and given the title Sanzang, or “Three Stores.”

Chapter Ninety - Two

It was now about the third watch of the night, and the moon in the middle of the sky made all as bright as day.

All along the journey I've been helping the good and fighting against the evil. What you don't realize is that the master is fated to have these troubles.”

The classic says, “Disaster comes at the height of success.”
Indeed one can meet with evil in happiness.
For love of the lanterns the dhyana nature was disturbed;
The heart set on the Way was weakened by a beautiful sight.
The great elixir has always had to be permanently guarded;
Once it is lost one always comes to grief.
Shut it up tight; bind it fast; never idle.
A moment's lack of care can lead one astray.

Chapter Ninety - Three

When thoughts arise there surely will be desire,
Longing is certain to lead one to disaster.
Why should intelligence distinguish the three ranks of nobility?
When conduct is complete it naturally returns to the primal sea.
Whether you become an immortal or a Buddha,
All must be arranged from within.
In absolute purity, with all dust removed,
All will be achieved and one will rise to heaven.

Do you understand the Prajna-paramita Heart Sutra then?”“Yes,” Monkey replied, “I do.” After that neither Sanzang nor Monkey made another sound. “Big brother's only talking big like that to keep the master going”, said Friar Sand. “What he knows about is how to use a cudgel. What does he know about explaining sutras?”“Stop talking such nonsense, ” said Sanzang. “Wukong understands the wordless language.
That is true explanation.”

Chapter Ninety - Four

My father was heaven, my mother earth,
And I was born when a rock split open.
1 took as my master a Taoist adept,
And mastered the Great Way.
Then I returned to my land of immortals,
Where I gathered all of us to live in our cave heaven.
In the ocean's depths I subdued the dragons,
Then climbed the mountains to capture wild beasts.
I removed us from the registers of death,
Put us on the rolls of the living,
And was appointed Great Sage Equaling Heaven.
I enjoyed the heavenly palaces,
And roamed around the splendid buildings.
I met the immortals of Heaven
In daily carousals;
Lived in the holy regions,
Happy every day.
But because I disrupted the Peach Banquet,
And raised a rebellion in the palaces of Heaven,
I was captured by the Lord Buddha
And imprisoned under the Five Elements Mountain.
When hungry I was fed on pellets of iron,
When thirsty I drank molten copper:
For five hundred years I tasted no food or tea.
Fortunately my master came from the East
To worship in the West.
Guanyin told him to deliver me from heavenly disaster.
I was rescued from my torment
To be converted to the Yogacarin sect.
My old name was Wukong;
Now I am known as the Novice.”

When the Three Thousand Tasks were achieved
All was combined in the Four Images.

I suddenly met a true immortal.
In half a sentence He undid the net of evil;
With two or three remarks
He smashed the gate to disaster.
Then I became aware,
Took him as my master on the spot,
Diligently studied the arts of the Double Eight,
Respectfully refined the Triple Three's sequence.
When training was complete I was able to fly,
And ascend to the heavenly palace.

Because of my sincerity
I fell in with immortals,
Raised the Baby Boy,
To mate him with the Lovely Girl.
When the Three Thousand Tasks were achieved
All was combined in the Four Images.
I rose above the boundary of the sky,
Bowed to the dark vault of heaven,
And was appointed Curtain-lifting General.

Chapter Ninety - Seven

However remote the place evil deeds can be done;
Heaven may be high, but it does not desert the good.
Steadily they plod along towards the Tathagata
Until they reach the gate of bliss on Vulture Peak.

Chapter Ninety - Eight

When achievements are complete it is right to bathe;
The fundamental nature has been trained into innate truth.
Many thousand troubles and today:
The nine prohibitions and triple surrender lead to renewal.
The monsters all done with, they climb to the Buddha land;
With disasters ended they see the Sramana.
Dirt and filth now washed away, they are wholly pure;
Returning to the fundamental, their bodies are imperishable.

Your boat has no bottom,” he said, “so however could you ferry anyone across?”
Step aboard, Master. That boat of his may have no bottom, but it's stable,
and won't capsize even in wind and waves.”

“This boat of mine,” the Buddha said,
“Has been famous since Chaos was first divided,
And been punted by me without any changes.
It is stable in wind and stable in waves,
Enjoying great peace with no start and no end.
Untouched by the six types of dust, it returns to the One,
Carries on calmly through all kinds of calamity.
Hard it is for a bottomless boat to cross the oceans,
But since ancient times it has ferried all creatures.”

Gently and strongly the Budhha pust off the boat,
at which a corpse came floating downstream
to the horror of the venerable elder.
“Don’t be frightened, Master,”,said Monkey. “That’s you”.
“It’s you, it’s you”, said Pig.
Friar Sand clapped his hands as he put in too, “It’s you”!
Congratulations! Congratulations

When the womb-born flesh and body of blood is cast aside,
The primal spirit finds kinship and love.
On this morning of actions completed and Buddhahood attained
The thirty-six kinds of dust from the past are washed away.

This is indeed what is meant by great wisdom,
The boundless dharma of crossing to the other bank.

Master, look at the magnificent scenery ahead. Flowers, grasses, pines and bamboo, as well as phoenixes, cranes and deer. Compare it with those places where evil beings created illusions through transformation. Ask yourself which is beautiful and good, and which ugly and evil.” Sanzang was full of expressions of gratitude. All of them were now light of body and cheerful as they walked up Vulture Peak.
Soon the ancient Thunder Monastery could be seen:
Its rooftops touched the heavens,
Its roots joined with the Sumeru range.
Amazing peaks spread out in serried rank;
Craggy rocks formed interlocking shapes.
Under the hanging scar were wonderful plants and flowers;
White cranes perched in the branches of the pines
As if they were jade creatures amid smoke.
Coloured phoenixes in pairs,
Green phoenixes two by two.
The pairs of coloured phoenixes
Brought blessings on the world as they called to the sun;
The green phoenixes two by two
Danced in the wind, a rare and wonderful sight.

The venerable elder waved his arms and performed a ritual dance as he followed Monkey straight to the gates of the Thunder Monastery, where four great vajrapanis greeted them with the words, “Have you arrived now, holy monk?” “Yes,” Sanzang replied with a bow, “Your disciple Xuanzang has arrived.” Having given this reply he was about to go in through the gateway. “Please wait for a moment, holy monk,” the vajrapanis said. “Let us report before you come in.” The vajrapanis sent a report of the Tang Priest's arrival to the four great vajrapanis on the middle gates, who in turn reported it to the inner gates, inside which were divine monks making offerings.

“The achievement of these scriptures is immeasurable,” the Tathagata said to the Tang Priest, “Although they are the source of foreknowledge and reflection for my school they are truly the origin of all Three School. (Buddhism, Taoism and Confucionism)

You were given blank texts because you came here to fetch them empty-handed. The blank texts are true, wordless scriptures, and they really are good. But as you living beings in the East are so deluded and have not achieved enlightenment we'll have to give you these ones instead.

The Bodhisattva Guanyin then submitted to the lord Buddha, “it has been fourteen years from the time when your disciple went to the East that year to find the man who would fetch the scriptures to his success today. That makes 5,040 days. May the World-honoured One allow the holy monks to go back East from the West
within eight days, so as to complete the number of rolls in one store,
and then your disciple may report his mission as completed.”

With that he instructed the Eight Vajrapanis, “You are to use your divine might to escort the holy monks back to the East, where they will hand the true scriptures over to be kept there. After escorting the holy monks back, you may return to the West. This must be done within eight days in order to match the number of rolls in one store.

The vajrapanis caught up with the Tang Priest. “Come with us,
scripture-fetchers,” they called; and the Tang Priest and the others became
light and strong as they floated up on clouds after the vajrapanis. Indeed:
Nature revealed and mind made clear, they visited the Buddha;
Actions complete and all achieved, they flew aloft.

Chapter Ninety - Nine

When the Nine Nines Are Complete the Demons Are All Destroyed
After the Triple Threes Are Fulfilled the Way Returns to Its Roots

The Way of reaching the truth through the nine nines is hard;
Hold fast to your determination to stand at the mysterious pass.
Only through rigorous effort can the demons be repelled;
Perseverance is essential to the true Dharma's return.
Do not mistake the scriptures for something easily won;
Of many a kind were the hardships endured by the holy monk.
The marvellous union has always been hard to achieve:

Outside the gates the Protectors of the Four Quarters and the Centre, the Four Duty Gods, the Six Dings, the Six Jias and the Guardians of the Faith went up to the Bodhisattva Guanyin and said, “We, your disciples, have given secret help to the holy monk in obedience to your dharma command, Bodhisattva. The Tang Priest's sufferings truly beggar description. Your disciples have made a careful record of the disasters and hardships that he has endured on his journey. This is the account of his ordeals.” The Bodhisattva read it through from the beginning. In total eighty ordeals were listed. Casting her eyes over the record, the Bodhisattva quickly said, “In the Buddha's school 'nine nines' are needed before one can come to the truth. The eighty ordeals that the holy monk has endured are one short of the full number . “Go after the vajrapanis,” she ordered a protector,
“and tell them to create another ordeal.”

But Monkey understood that as the Tang Priest had not yet completed the nine nines he was fated to undergo another ordeal, which was why he had been held up here.

The mystery of the Dharma within the unique sect:
When the demons are all defeated man and heaven are made known.
Only now can the original face be seen,
And the causes of the one body all be complete.
Hold to the Three Vehicles to come and go at will;
After the elixir's nine transformations you may do what you like.
Carry your bundle, let your staff fly, and understand the inexpressible;
Lucky they were on their return to meet the Ancient Turtle.

Now ever since the venerable elder had reached the Western Heaven, bathed in the Jade Truth Temple,
cast off his mortal body at the Cloud-touching Crossing and walked up the Vulture Peak,
his heart had been set only on worshipping the Buddha;

(In relation to scriptures that were damaged)
“We were careless,” Sanzang said with remorse. “We did not pay enough attention.” “You're wrong,” said Monkey with a laugh, “you're wrong. Heaven and earth are incomplete and this scripture used to be complete. Now it's been soaked and torn to fulfill the mystery of incompleteness.

It was now late at night. Sanzang, who was guarding the true scriptures and would not leave them for a moment, sat in meditation at the foot of the tower to keep a vigil. As the third watch of the night approached he said quietly, “Wukong, the people here know that we have found the Way and completed our undertaking. As the old saying goes, 'The true adept does not show his face; who shows his face is no true adept.' I am afraid that if we tarry too long here that we may fail in our main enterprise.”

When the elixir is formed one sees the original face;
When the body is strong one can then visit one's sovereign.

Chapter One - Hundred

The Journey Back to the East Is Made
The Five Immortals Achieve Nirvana

He lifted up his heart towards the Pure Land, and made a Dharma journey to the West, braving the dangers of distant lands as he walked alone, trusting to his staff.

The Way of the Three Vehicles and the Six Disciplines gallop across the field of his heart

The great teaching arose in the West. Later a wondrous dream came to the Han court, spreading its brilliance and charity to the East. In ancient times, when the Buddha's forms and traces were shared around, they converted people before word could be spread abroad. In the age when they were sometimes visible and sometimes invisible, the people looked up to them and followed them. But later the image was obscures and nirvana was reached, it moved away and left the world, the golden countenance was hidden away and no longer radiated its brilliance in the three thousand worlds. Pictures of the lovely image were made, vainly trying to show the Buddha's thirty-two holy marks. Thereafter his subtle words were widely propagated, rescuing birds on the three roads of life; the teachings he left behind were spread afar, guiding all living beings along the ten stages of development. The Buddha has scriptures that can be divided into the Greater and Lesser Vehicles. There is also magic, the art of spreading mistakes and making right into wrong.

Sanzang put the scriptures down and also rose up to the ninth level of clouds,
then went away with them through the air.

The holy monk long strove to fetch the scriptures;
For fourteen years across the West he strayed.
He journeyed hard and met with much disaster;
By mountains and by rivers long delayed.
Completing eight times nine and one nine more,
His deeds filled worlds in numbers beyond measure.
He went back to his country taking sutras
That people in the East will always treasure.

We will tell not of how the four travelers escaped and rose on the wind with the vajrapanis,
but of the many people in the Temple of Deliverance in Chen Village.

We will say no more of this, but tell of how the Eight Vajrapanis used a second fragrant wind to carry the four pilgrims off again. Some days later they reached the East, and Chang'an came gradually into view.

The primal cause of the scriptures has been matched to the Five Elements.
Through painful tempering all monsters have been destroyed;
Now he returns in triumph to the capital.

“Would you be willing to recite some of the true scriptures for us, Younger Brother?” Taizong asked. “Your Majesty,” Sanzang replied, “if true scriptures are to be recited it must be done in the Buddha's ground. A throne hall is no place for the recital of scriptures.” “Which is the purest monastery in the city of Chang'an?”

The story tells how the Eight Vajrapanis led the venerable elder, his three disciples and the horse, all five of them back to Vulture Peak. The journey to Chang'an and back had taken eight days.

“Holy Monk,” the Tathagata said, “in an earlier life you were my second disciple, and called Master Golden Cicada. But because you would not listen to my sermon on the Dharma and had no respect for my great teaching I demoted your soul to be reborn in the East. Now, happily, you have come over to the faith and rely on our support; and in following our teaching your achievement in fetching the true scriptures has been very great. Your reward will be to be promoted to high office as the Candana-punya Buddha. Sun Wukong, when you made great havoc in the palaces of heaven I had to use powerful magic to crush you under the Five Elements Mountain until, happily, your heaven-sent punishment was completed and you were converted to the Sakyamuni's faith. It was also fortunate that you suppressed your evil side and gave play to your good side as you won glory by defeating monsters and demons along the journey. All that was begun has now been completed and you too will be rewarded with high office as the Victorious Fighting Buddha. Zhu Wuneng; you used to be a water god in the River of Heaven as Marshal Tian Peng. Because of your drunken flirtation with an immortal maiden at the Peach Banquet you were sent down to be born in the lower world as a beast. From your love of the human body you sinned in the Cloud Pathway Cave on the Mount of Blessing before your conversion to the great faith and entry into our Buddhist sect. You guarded the holy monk on his journey, but your heart is still unregenerate, and you are not yet purged of your lust. But as you won merit by carrying the luggage you will be rewarded with promotion as the Altar Cleanser.” “They've both been made Buddhas,” Pig shouted, “so why am I only the Altar Cleanser?” “Because you have a voracious appetite, a lazy body and a huge belly,” the Tathagata replied. “Now very many people in the world's four continents believe in our teachings. I will ask you to clean up the altars after all Buddhist services: your post is of a rank that provides plenty to eat. What is wrong with that?” “Sha Wujing, you used to be the Curtain-lifting General until you were banished to the lower world for smashing a crystal bowl at a Peach Banquet. You fell into the River of Flowing Sands where you sinned by killing and eating people, until, thank goodness, you were converted to our teaching, sincerely relied on our support, and won merit by protecting the holy monk and leading the horse up the mountain. Your reward will be elevation to high office as the Golden Arhat.” Then he said to the white horse. “You were originally the son of Guangjin, the Dragon King of the Western Ocean. Because you disobeyed your father you were punished for being unfilial until youtoo were converted to the Dharma and to our faith. Every day you carried the holy monk to the West, and after that you carried the holy scriptures back to the East. For these achievements you will be rewarded by being made a Heavenly Dragon of the Eight Classes of Being.”

All of reality turns to dust;
When the four appearances combine the body is renewed.
The substance of the Five Elements is all void;
Forget about the passing fame of fiends.
With Candana-punya comes the great awakening;
When duties are completed they escape from suffering.
Great is the blessing of scriptures spread abroad;
Within the only gate five sages dwell on high.

Thus it is that all the Buddhas of every world
Are willing with this achievement
To adorn the Pure Land of the Buddha.
Above we can repay the fourfold kindness,
Below we save those suffering in the three paths of life.
Let anyone who sees or hears
Cherish the enlightened mind.
May all be reborn in the Land of Bliss,
To end this present life of retribution.