The Twenty-fifth Patriarch Vasiasita travelled around many countries in India to take refuge. He won all the 50 debates with people from outside school about Buddhist sutras and teachings, and he kept calm in face of reproaches and challenges from King Desheng. In this lecture, Supreme Master Ching Hai talks about what Zen Patriarch Vasiasita had gone through, from the death of the Twenty-fourth Patriarch Simhabodhi to the conversion of Prince Funyomitta, and reveals the profound meaning of cause and effect behind the "red dirt" with stories which are clear and easy to understand.
Even though Patriarch Simhabodhi was already a great Master with incredible power, he still had to pay for the karma. If he had been an ordinary person, he could turn the big karma to a small one by earning merits and blessings; but since he was a great teacher, he couldn't leave it but should bear more karma, because Maya wouldn't let him go so easily.
It is difficult to escape from the karma life after life, either for the enlightened Reverend person or ignorant ordinary people. Some still suffer from illness and pains even though they do good and charity. It's not because earning merits is useless, but because our karma is too heavy. We shouldn't stop earning merits for fear of illness and sufferings. According to the sutras, if we have to be in the three suffering realms to repay our karma, we should pray that we repay all of it in this lifetime so that we won't fall into the three suffering realms.