Buddhism Your Questions Answered (171 FAQ)

Q&A 23. Purpose of reciting the Eighty-Eight Buddhas Great Repentance

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Q: Master Lu, my friend and I are following Guan Yin Citta Dharma Door, and reciting Buddhist sutras and mantras. After reciting the Eighty-Eight Buddhas Great Repentance, my friend dreamt about people asking her for Little Houses. My friend was so scared that she stopped performing recitations. Could you please explain the purpose of reciting the Eighty-Eight Buddhas Great Repentance?


  • When a person steals something, kills a dog or a person, or commits any wrongdoings, a cloud or patch of dark energy will arise in their mind. This cloud of dark energy will then enter this person’s body. These dark clouds of energy are commonly known as karmic obstacles.
    When Master Lu states that a person has a lot of heavy dark energy on their Totem, it means that this person has committed many wrongdoings, both in past lives and in their present life. The more such dark energy accumulated within the body, the more likely this person will encounter problems regarding their health, career, relationship, etc.
  • Suppose explosives represent karmic obstacles. When a person has accumulated a large quantity of karmic obstacles in their body, it is similar to having a lot of explosives stored in their body. Once this person has committed many wrongdoings and the storage is full, as soon as the karmic obstacles are activated and transformed into one spirit, they will then undergo karmic retribution. When all the stored explosives explode at once, this person will be “blown to bits”. This may be the time that a person is diagnosed with a terminal illness such as cancer, or is involved in a fatal car accident.
  • Master Lu rarely sees a Totem that is very clean and bright. Everyone carries a lot of karmic obstacles. The main reason is that humans often have too many unwholesome thoughts, and desire to take advantage of others. They are reluctant to give, and do not know how to treat others well. Therefore, their body, speech, and mind are not pure. As a result, karmic obstacles from their past lives and the present life keep accumulating.
  • It is very important to carry fewer karmic obstacles and to stay pure. The best way to eliminate karmic obstacles is to recite the Eighty-Eight Buddhas Great Repentance and eliminate the dark energy stored in different areas of your body. That is, to reduce the quantity of “explosives” in the body. The more the explosives are reduced, the less likely you are to experience serious injuries, even if a small quantity of the remaining “explosives” is ignited in your later years.
  • These days, the listeners of Master Lu’s radio programs are very wise. They ask him about the quantity of karmic obstacles that they carry and where they are located in the body. This allows them to eliminate karmic obstacles in one part of the body at a time.
    Before you recite the Eighty-Eight Buddhas Great Repentance, you can say, “May the Greatly Merciful and Greatly Compassionate Guan Yin Bodhisattva protect and bless me, <your full name>, help me to repent and eliminate karmic obstacles in <the part of the body>”.
    Generally, for each part of the body, you can recite the Eighty-Eight Buddhas Great Repentance 3 times per day for 2 months, or 7 times per day for 1 month.
    Certain parts of the body may have more karmic obstacles and require a longer period of time. If you simply say, “eliminate karmic obstacles in my body”, it would be very difficult to eliminate all of them, as there are too many all over the body.
  • Many illnesses are possibly related to karmic obstacles, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, cerebral thrombosis, coronary heart disease, skin disease, epilepsy, Ménière’s disease, psychosis, and so forth.
  • Back to your question, when you recite the Eighty-Eight Buddhas Great Repentance, you may sometimes dream about someone asking you for sutras and mantras, or the part of the body in which you wish to eliminate karmic obstacles starts to ache – this is an indication that your karmic obstacles have been activated and transformed into spirits. You should recite 4 to 7 Little Houses as soon as possible. If you are still feeling unwell, you should continue to recite more Little Houses until you achieve full recovery. The karmic obstacles in this particular part of the body will then be almost completely eliminated. In your later years, you will be less likely to suffer from an illness in that part of your body.
    However, if you leave it until you reach old age, then when the negative karma ripens, you may not be able to completely recover even if you recite several dozen or over a hundred Little Houses.
  • It is beneficial to allow karmic obstacles to be activated early and transformed into spirits. At this stage, these spirits would be less powerful and the number of Little Houses required will be fewer than when the karmic obstacles are activated later. This concept is similar to receiving treatment at an early stage of an illness.
  • While reciting the Eighty-Eight Buddhas Great Repentance, it is best to kneel down and perform a full bow (with your forehead touching the floor) after reciting, “All the wrongs I have committed, I now repent (Suo Zuo Zui Zhang, Jin Jie Chan Hui)”.
    For the rest of the sutra, when the text indicates that you should make prostrations, you can visualise yourself kneeling and performing the full bows in your mind, and nod your head instead.
    You must recite the last line, “Namo Great Conduct Samantabhadra Bodhisattva (Na Mo Da Xing Pu Xian Pu Sa)”, 3 times before standing up. If you are reciting whilst kneeling, you should also recite this last line 3 times and then stand up.
  • It is fine to perform recitations at a fast speed, provided that you do not miss any words.



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