Q: Dear Master Lu, we have a pet at home. When it passes away, how do we help the spirit of the pet to ascend to a higher spiritual realm?
- Generally, to help the spirits of dead animals ascend to a higher spiritual realm, you can recite the Amitabha Pure Land Rebirth Mantra. For example, recite the mantra 49 times for a cat or a dog, or 108 times for a turtle. It would certainly be better if you can complete more recitations of the mantra.
- You can also recite Little Houses to help the spirits of the deceased pet ascend to a higher spiritual realm. The Little Houses can be addressed to “Dog <full name of the pet>” or “Cat <full name of the pet>”. Generally, you can recite 3 to 4 Little Houses for each pet. If you recite a large quantity of Little Houses for animals such as dogs, cows, etc., it is possible for them to be reborn into the human realm. However, it is unlikely for animals such as birds or goldfish to be reborn into the human realm.
- If your deceased pets visit you in your dreams, this is a sign that they are asking you to perform recitations for them. You can then recite 2 to 4 Little Houses and address them to the “Karmic Creditor of <your full name>”.
- If your pets become ill, you can perform recitations or even recite Little Houses for them. For example, if your dog becomes ill, you can address the Little Houses to the “Karmic Creditor of Dog <full name of the pet>”.
Avoid praying for an extension of your pet’s lifespan. Instead of keeping your pet in the animal realm, it would be better if you can help your pet to eliminate its karmic obstacles so that it will not be reborn as an animal again. If you are determined to help your pet, you can recite the Eighty-Eight Buddhas Great Repentance and Little Houses for it, helping it to eliminate its karmic obstacles. When your pet passes way, it would be more likely for your pet to be reborn into a better spiritual realm.
- It is recommended that we refrain from keeping pets at home. As humans and animals do not belong to the same realm, our energy fields would be affected. However, it is fine to keep goldfish, as they can help to harmonise the Feng-shui in your home and to accumulate wealth. The fish tank could be placed on the right-hand side as you enter the main door. You should keep 6 goldfish that are gold or red in colour.
- If you already have a large number of pets, you may give them to others if possible. If you are unable to give them away, then you should continue to keep them until the end of their lives, as they also have karmic affinities with you.