The Scripture of the Fo...


The Scripture of the Founding Master

Chapter Six: Doubts Clarified


Sŏ Taewon asked about a statement of the Buddha of the past: “‘During the kalpa of destruction, this world will be annihilated by the conflagration of heaven and earth.’ Is this actually the case?” The Founding Master said, “It is.” He asked again, “If the conflagration of heaven and earth occurs, then will the current heaven and earth be completely annihilated and a new heaven and earth created?” The Founding Master said, “Even if the conflagration of heaven and earth occurs, heaven and earth are not annihilated all at once. It is just like birth, old age, sickness, and death among human beings: one portion is being born, one portion is aging, one portion is sick, and one portion is dying, all in a never-ending, continuous cycle. So too, in heaven and earth, the principles of formation, subsistence, decay, and emptiness are operative in thousands of different areas, so that even at this moment there is a portion that is in formation, a portion that is subsisting, a portion that is decaying, and a portion that is being emptied, thus producing a continuing conflagration of heaven and earth.”