Zhilong Developing Buddhist Medicine

Publish Date:2021-11-29

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During Xingding period of the Jin Dynasty, master Zhilong presided over Shaolin Temple. He always took some remaining money of temple’ s payments to reliever the poor every year. 

One day of Xingding five years, with cloudy and whirling snow weather, master Longgong and monastic manager Xingfa went to know the score about common people and prepared to help people by charity. They got to the west of Guodian village meeting Ren En, a known dutiful son far and near. He, with a sad air and tears in his eyes, told master Longgong about his mother with serious illness at home and had no money to treat her. Master Longgong immediately gave Ren En two hundred texts of copper coins to let his mother see a doctor soon. Ren En got the money and went to Dengfeng through a snow storm, a 30 li distance from here, to find a doctor and get some medicine for his mother. The doctor said he couldn’t pay a home visit because of the far distance and the high mountain, losing the time at last. Then Ren En’ s mother died without receiving timely treatment. Today Ren En, visiting master Longgong, first wanted to thank Longgong; second he was only one in his family now. Therefore he would like to become a monk of Shaolin Temple. Master Longgong agreed to Ren En’ s request and took him as a disciple, with Sengxia being his dharma name.


This thing spurred master Longgong seriously. He knew the temple was situated in remote mountains, having few trained doctors and a little medicine. Though more money was given to people, it could not always save people. Then Mu’ an Xingying advocated master Longgong to set a pharmacy to help people in a casual conversation. Master Longgong accepted Mu’ an Xingying’ s suggestion. But this met with opposition from monastic manager Xingfa. The establishment of the pharmacy in the temple had no choice but to be put aside.


As luck would have it, Sengde, a disciple of monk Xingfa, broke his bones during his martial arts practice. There was no pharmacy near the temple. There was also heavy snow sealing the mountain and Sengde couldn’t receive timely treatment, which resulted in his disability. Master Longgong claimed the importance of opening a pharmacy to all monks of the temple. Therefore there would be no one oppose the establishment of the pharmacy from that on anymore.


Master Longgong further realized the medical and medicine were the two pillars of the pharmacy. Hence he let his disciple Sengxia learn pharmaceutical technology and Xingfa’ s disciple Sengde study medical. There were two monks loving the medical career and then the pharmacy was set up.


Longgong created the pharmacy taking Chan as the principal thing, medical and medicine as supplementary factors, valuing both Chan, and medical and medicine, for benefits of beings.

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