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[[File:0000210 kuan-yin-from-nelson-atkins-museum-2295AX 600.jpeg|thumb|alt=Statue of Kuan Yin, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri|Statue of Kuan Yin, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri. She is depicted here seated in her characteristic pose of royal ease.]]
    
'''Kuan Yin''' is revered in Buddhism as the compassionate Saviouress, the Bodhisattva of Mercy. Beloved as a mother figure and divine mediatrix who is close to the daily affairs of her devotees, Kuan Yin’s role as Buddhist Madonna has been compared to that of [[Mother Mary|Mary the mother of Jesus]] in the West. Throughout the Far East, devotees seek her guidance and succor in every area of life. Altars dedicated to Kuan Yin can be found in temples, homes and wayside grottoes.
 
'''Kuan Yin''' is revered in Buddhism as the compassionate Saviouress, the Bodhisattva of Mercy. Beloved as a mother figure and divine mediatrix who is close to the daily affairs of her devotees, Kuan Yin’s role as Buddhist Madonna has been compared to that of [[Mother Mary|Mary the mother of Jesus]] in the West. Throughout the Far East, devotees seek her guidance and succor in every area of life. Altars dedicated to Kuan Yin can be found in temples, homes and wayside grottoes.
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Kuan Yin is revered as protectress of women, sailors, merchants, craftsmen, those under criminal prosecution and those desiring progeny. There is an implicit trust in Kuan Yin’s saving grace and healing powers. Many believe that even the simple recitation of her name will bring her instantly to the scene. ''[[Kuan Yin’s Crystal Rosary]]'' contains her mantras and is a powerful means of invoking her intercession.
 
Kuan Yin is revered as protectress of women, sailors, merchants, craftsmen, those under criminal prosecution and those desiring progeny. There is an implicit trust in Kuan Yin’s saving grace and healing powers. Many believe that even the simple recitation of her name will bring her instantly to the scene. ''[[Kuan Yin’s Crystal Rosary]]'' contains her mantras and is a powerful means of invoking her intercession.
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[[File:0001092 Kuan-Yin-willow-branch-poster-4345 600.jpeg|thumb|left|upright|alt=Old Korean painting of Kuan Yin|''Avalokitesvara with Willow Branch'', hanging Silk Scroll, c. 1310, Goryeo Dynasty (Korea)]]
    
== Traditions in the East ==
 
== Traditions in the East ==
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[[File:0001092 Kuan-Yin-willow-branch-poster-4345 600.jpeg|thumb|upright]]
      
For centuries, Kuan Yin has epitomized the great ideal of Mahayana Buddhism in her role as [[bodhisattva]]—literally “a being of bodhi, or enlightenment,” who is destined to become a [[Buddha]] but has foregone the bliss of [[nirvana]] with a vow to save all children of God. Kuan Yin has taken the bodhisattva vow to work with the evolutions of this planet and this solar system to show them the way of the teachings of the ascended masters.
 
For centuries, Kuan Yin has epitomized the great ideal of Mahayana Buddhism in her role as [[bodhisattva]]—literally “a being of bodhi, or enlightenment,” who is destined to become a [[Buddha]] but has foregone the bliss of [[nirvana]] with a vow to save all children of God. Kuan Yin has taken the bodhisattva vow to work with the evolutions of this planet and this solar system to show them the way of the teachings of the ascended masters.
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Kuan Yin was worshiped in China before the advent of Buddhism and thereafter adopted by Buddhists as an incarnation of [[Avalokitesvara]] (Padmapani). Devotees invoke the bodhisattva’s power and merciful intercession with the mantra ''Om Mani Padme Hum''—“Hail to the jewel in the lotus!” or, as it has also been interpreted, “Hail to Avalokitesvara, who is the jewel in the heart of the lotus of the devotee’s heart!”
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Kuan Yin was worshiped in China before the advent of Buddhism and thereafter adopted by Buddhists as an incarnation of [[Avalokitesvara]] (Padmapani). Devotees invoke the bodhisattva’s power and merciful intercession with the mantra ''[[Om mani padme hum|Om Mani Padme Hum]]''—“Hail to the jewel in the lotus!” or, as it has also been interpreted, “Hail to Avalokitesvara, who is the jewel in the heart of the lotus of the devotee’s heart!”
    
According to legend, Avalokitesvara was born from a ray of white light that [[Amitabha]], the Buddha of Boundless Light, emitted from his right eye as he was lost in ecstasy. Thus Avalokitesvara, or Kuan Yin, is regarded as the “reflex” of Amitabha—a further emanation or embodiment of ''maha karuna'' (great compassion), the quality that Amitabha embodies. Devotees believe that Kuan Yin, as the merciful redemptress, expresses Amitabha’s compassion in a more direct and personal way and that prayers to her are answered more quickly.
 
According to legend, Avalokitesvara was born from a ray of white light that [[Amitabha]], the Buddha of Boundless Light, emitted from his right eye as he was lost in ecstasy. Thus Avalokitesvara, or Kuan Yin, is regarded as the “reflex” of Amitabha—a further emanation or embodiment of ''maha karuna'' (great compassion), the quality that Amitabha embodies. Devotees believe that Kuan Yin, as the merciful redemptress, expresses Amitabha’s compassion in a more direct and personal way and that prayers to her are answered more quickly.
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In Buddhist tradition, Kuan Yin is sometimes depicted as the captain of the “Bark of Salvation,” ferrying souls across the rough sea of their karma to Amitabha’s Western Paradise, or [[Pure Land]], the land of bliss where souls may be reborn to receive continued instruction toward the goal of enlightenment and perfection.
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[[File:0000214 kuan-yin-on-a-dragon-2331AX 600.jpeg|thumb|upright|alt=Painting of Kuan Yin in Chinese style, riding a dragon in the midst of a turbulent sea|Kuan Yin riding a dragon. This image also represents Kuan Yin’s mastery of the water element, in the same way that Mother Mary’s mastery of the water element is depicted in images of her with the moon beneath her feet.]]
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In the [[Pure Land]] sect of Buddhism, Kuan Yin forms part of a ruling triad that is often depicted in temples and is a popular theme in Buddhist art. In the center is the Buddha of Boundless Light, Amitabha (Chinese, A-mi-t’o Fo; Japanese, Amida). To his right is the bodhisattva of strength or power, Mahasthamaprapta, and to his left is Kuan Yin, personifying his endless mercy.
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In Buddhist theology Kuan Yin is sometimes depicted as the captain of the “Bark of Salvation,” guiding souls to Amitabha's Western Paradise, or Pure Land—the land of bliss where souls may be reborn to receive continued instruction toward the goal of enlightenment and perfection. The journey to Pure Land is frequently represented in woodcuts showing boats full of Amitabha’s followers under Kuan Yin’s captainship.
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One of Kuan Yin’s principal emblems is the willow branch. According to Buddhist belief, she uses the willow branch to drive away illness and to sprinkle the nectar of wisdom and compassion upon all who invoke her assistance. In some Asian traditions prayers to cure disease were given while stroking the afflicted person with a willow branch.
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Kuan Yin is considered to be the bestower of children, and so she is often depicted with an infant. In Taiwan there is also a legend that in one of her embodiments she was a mother and therefore is shown with her own child.
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Kuan Yin is also often depicted standing on a dragon. The dragon for the Chinese people represents China and their divine lineage. It is also a symbol of the entire Spirit of the [[Great White Brotherhood]]. In its antithesis, the dragon is seen in the [[Book of Revelation]] giving power to the beasts. So a dragon is a thoughtform of a great hierarchy—whether embodying the forces of Light or the forces of Darkness.
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In Chinese lore the dragon and the [[phoenix]] bird together represent the yang and yin of the whirling T’ai Chi. So the image of Kuan Yin riding a dragon shows her having dominion over that dragon in the sense of being the master of it.
    
== Miao Shan ==
 
== Miao Shan ==
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It is widely believed that Kuan Yin took embodiment as the third daughter of Miao Chuang Wang, identified with the Chou dynasty, a ruler of a northern Chinese kingdom about 700 <small>B</small>.<small>C</small>. According to legend, she was determined to devote herself to a religious life. She refused to be married despite the command of her father and the entreaties of her friends. Finally, however, she was permitted to enter the Nunnery of the White Bird in Lungshu Hsien. Here, at her father’s orders, she was put to the most demeaning tasks, which in no way dampened her zealous love for God.
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[[File:The Tiger Carries Off Miao Shan.jpg|thumb|upright|alt=Painting in Chinese style of Miao Shan on the back of a tiger|Miao Shan being carried off by a tiger]]
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It is widely believed that Kuan Yin took embodiment as the third daughter of Miao Chuang Wang, identified with the Chou dynasty, a ruler of a northern Chinese kingdom about 700 <small>B</small>.<small>C</small>. The king had seized his throne by force of arms, and he desperately desired a male heir to succeed him. Instead he had three daughters. The youngest, Miao Shan, was a devout child who “scrupulously observed all of the tenets of the Buddhist doctrines. Virtuous living seemed, indeed, to be to her a second nature.”<ref>This account is adapted from Edward T. C. Werner, ''Myths and Legends of China'' (London: Harrap, 1922), chapter X.</ref>
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She recognized the impermanence of riches and glory and desired nothing more than “a peaceful retreat on a lone mountain.” She told her sisters that “If some day I can reach a high degree of goodness.... I will rescue my father and mother, and bring them to Heaven; I will save the miserable and afflicted on earth; I will convert the spirits which do evil, and cause them to do good.
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Miao Shan’s father determined to find a husband for her who would be capable of ruling the kingdom. The king explained his plans and told her that all his hopes rested on her. Miao Shan said that she did not wish to marry because she desired to attain perfection and Buddhahood.  
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Angered by her devotion, her father ordered her to be executed, but when the sword touched her, it broke into a thousand pieces. Her father then commanded her to be stifled, but when her soul left her body and descended into hell, she transformed it into paradise. Carried on a lotus flower to the island of P’ootoo, near Nimpo, she lived for nine years healing the diseased and saving mariners from shipwreck.
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The king was angry. “Has anyone known the daughter of a king to become a nun?” he asked. Then he demanded that she marry an academician or a military man at once. Recognizing that she could not openly disobey her father’s orders, Miao Shan said that she would immediately marry a physician since she could then still become a Buddha. Outraged, the king ordered his officer to take her to the Queen’s garden “and let her perish there of cold.”
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Miao Shan retired to the garden glad to exchange the pleasures of the palace for the sweetness of solitude. Her parents, sisters and the ladies of the court tried in vain to dissuade Miao Shan from her purpose. Instead she asked her father’s permission to live at the Nunnery of the White Bird. The king consented but sent strict orders to the nunnery that the nuns should do all in their power to persuade Miao Shan to leave.
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The nuns tried but failed. They then decided to put Miao Shan in charge of the kitchen where, if she failed, they could dismiss her. Miao Shan so joyously agreed that she touched the heart of the Master of Heaven who ordered the spirits of heaven to assist her in her duties.
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The Superior of the nunnery then asked the King to recall his daughter. The king sent five thousand soldiers to surround the Nunnery of the White Bird and burn it to the ground along with the nuns. The nuns invoked the aid of Heaven but said to Miao Shan: “It is you who have brought upon us this terrible disaster.”
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Miao Shan agreed that it was so. She knelt and prayed to Heaven and then pricked the roof of her mouth with her bamboo hairpin and spat the flowing blood toward heaven. Great clouds immediately gathered and showers put out the fire threatening the nunnery. The nuns threw themselves on their knees and thanked Miao Shan for saving their lives.
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The king, informed of this miracle, was enraged and ordered the chief of the guard to immediately behead Miao Shan. As the execution was to begin, the sky became overcast, but a bright light surrounded Miao Shan. When the executioner’s sword fell upon her neck, it broke. A spear thrust at her fell to pieces.
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The king ordered that she be strangled with a silken cord. But a tiger leaped into the execution grounds, dispersed the executioners, put the inanimate body of Miao Shan on his back and disappeared into the pine forest.
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[[File:Statue of Guanyin, Mt Putuo, China.jpg|thumb|left|alt=caption|Thirty-three meter statue of Kuan Yin on Mount P’u-t’o, the sacred island-mountain that became a center of devotion to Kuan Yin]]
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Miao Shan’s soul, which was not hurt, was taken to the lower world, hell. She prayed and hell was transformed into a paradise. She was sent back to earth to resume her life there. Carried on a lotus flower to the island of P’u-t’o Shan—the sacred island-mountain in the Chusan Archipelago off the coast of Chekiang—she lived for nine years healing the diseased and saving mariners from shipwreck.
    
It is said that once, when word was brought to her that her father had fallen ill, she cut the flesh from her arms and used it as a medicine that saved his life. In gratitude, he ordered that a statue be erected in her honor, commissioning the artist to depict her with “completely formed arms and eyes.” The artist misunderstood, however, and to this day Kuan Yin is sometimes shown with a “thousand arms and a thousand eyes,” thereby able to see and assist the masses of her people.
 
It is said that once, when word was brought to her that her father had fallen ill, she cut the flesh from her arms and used it as a medicine that saved his life. In gratitude, he ordered that a statue be erected in her honor, commissioning the artist to depict her with “completely formed arms and eyes.” The artist misunderstood, however, and to this day Kuan Yin is sometimes shown with a “thousand arms and a thousand eyes,” thereby able to see and assist the masses of her people.
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During the twelfth century Buddhist monks settled on P’u-t’o Shan, and devotion to Kuan Yin spread throughout northern China. This picturesque island became the chief center of worship of the compassionate Saviouress; crowds of pilgrims would journey from the remotest places in China and even from Manchuria, Mongolia and Tibet to attend stately services there. At one time there were more than a hundred temples on the island and over one thousand monks.  The lore surrounding P’u-t’o island recounts numerous appearances and miracles performed by Kuan Yin, who, it is believed, reveals herself to the faithful in a certain cave on the island.
    
== The bodhisattva ideal ==
 
== The bodhisattva ideal ==
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<blockquote>For when aeons pass and men are not moved by the flame that you hold, remember that you might wish that you had chosen another easier or more gratifying way. As the centuries pass, the thousands of years and the cycles, and the same individuals whom you have nourished by the power of your heart flame are involved in the same involvements in the world, you find that you cry out to God and say, “O L<small>ORD</small>, how long, how long will this wayward generation be in coming to the knowledge of their divinity and of the love of the sacred fire that we have held for so long?”<ref>Kuan Yin, “The Quality of Mercy for the Regeneration of the Youth of the World,” ''Pearls of Wisdom'', 1982, Book II, pp. ''120–21''.</ref></blockquote>  
 
<blockquote>For when aeons pass and men are not moved by the flame that you hold, remember that you might wish that you had chosen another easier or more gratifying way. As the centuries pass, the thousands of years and the cycles, and the same individuals whom you have nourished by the power of your heart flame are involved in the same involvements in the world, you find that you cry out to God and say, “O L<small>ORD</small>, how long, how long will this wayward generation be in coming to the knowledge of their divinity and of the love of the sacred fire that we have held for so long?”<ref>Kuan Yin, “The Quality of Mercy for the Regeneration of the Youth of the World,” ''Pearls of Wisdom'', 1982, Book II, pp. ''120–21''.</ref></blockquote>  
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[[File:100598M-medres.jpg|thumb|Kuan Yin]]
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[[File:100598M-medres.jpg|thumb|alt=Kuan Yin, seated|Kuan Yin]]
    
== The mercy flame ==
 
== The mercy flame ==
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When we invoke it, let us realize that our own [[Christ Self]] is our psychiatrist, our psychologist, our minister, our priest, our rabbi, our friend, the one to whom we should go daily to unburden ourselves, as the American Indians did. They made a circle around the camp fire at night and discussed the events of the day. And all that they didn’t like, they threw into the flames. It is the same principle that has been taught in every [[religion]] of the world. When we put it into the flame, we can go to bed at night in peace. Much insomnia is caused because we are not releasing our daily karma, our daily burdens; and therefore, we are not at peace with ourselves and with God.
 
When we invoke it, let us realize that our own [[Christ Self]] is our psychiatrist, our psychologist, our minister, our priest, our rabbi, our friend, the one to whom we should go daily to unburden ourselves, as the American Indians did. They made a circle around the camp fire at night and discussed the events of the day. And all that they didn’t like, they threw into the flames. It is the same principle that has been taught in every [[religion]] of the world. When we put it into the flame, we can go to bed at night in peace. Much insomnia is caused because we are not releasing our daily karma, our daily burdens; and therefore, we are not at peace with ourselves and with God.
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We have a need for confession, a need to tell God what we have done that is not in keeping with his Law. Until we tell him about it and ask for his flame of forgiveness to pass through us, we have that sense of guilt, fear, shame, and above all a separation from him. Today this is manifest in all kinds of mental and emotional diseases, split personalities, hatred of father and mother, hatred of children, and many other problems to which modern society has fallen prey. The path back to the guru, the Inner Christ, is calling upon the law of forgiveness.
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We have a need for confession, a need to tell God what we have done that is not in keeping with his Law. Until we tell him about it and ask for his flame of forgiveness to pass through us, we have that sense of guilt, fear, shame, and above all a separation from him. Today this is manifest in all kinds of mental and emotional diseases, split personalities, hatred of father and mother, hatred of children, and many other problems to which modern society has fallen prey. The path back to the guru, the Inner Christ, is calling upon the [[law of forgiveness]].
    
Forgiveness is something we need to invoke not only for ourselves; we need to invoke it for every part of life—all who have ever wronged us, all whom we have wronged. [[Saint Germain]] teaches us that when we invoke forgiveness, it must be by a very intense love in our heart. We need to let each other know that we forgive and that we are asking for forgiveness. And it’s a point of humility to say, “I’ve done wrong, and I ask you and God to forgive me.”
 
Forgiveness is something we need to invoke not only for ourselves; we need to invoke it for every part of life—all who have ever wronged us, all whom we have wronged. [[Saint Germain]] teaches us that when we invoke forgiveness, it must be by a very intense love in our heart. We need to let each other know that we forgive and that we are asking for forgiveness. And it’s a point of humility to say, “I’ve done wrong, and I ask you and God to forgive me.”
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There is a difference between the forgiveness of sins and their transmutation. Someone may steal your purse and later tell you that he is sorry he took it. You may forgive him, but the matter is not closed, karmically speaking, until he returns that purse to you with every penny intact or makes whatever restitution is necessary. Forgiveness is not the balancing of karma; it is the setting aside of karma whereby you are given the freedom to make things right without that heavy burden of sin.
 
There is a difference between the forgiveness of sins and their transmutation. Someone may steal your purse and later tell you that he is sorry he took it. You may forgive him, but the matter is not closed, karmically speaking, until he returns that purse to you with every penny intact or makes whatever restitution is necessary. Forgiveness is not the balancing of karma; it is the setting aside of karma whereby you are given the freedom to make things right without that heavy burden of sin.
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The foundation of the path of the abundant life or of science is forgiveness. It is the resolution of harmony between every part of God. It is an intense love action of the freedom flame. The energies of the violet flame, the energies of God, are always pulsating, always moving, and they are transmuting the records of the subconscious. Forgiveness is the fulfillment of the law in Isaiah, “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”<ref>Isa. 1:18.</ref>
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The foundation of the path of the abundant life or of science is forgiveness. It is the resolution of harmony between every part of God. It is an intense love action of the freedom flame. The energies of the [[violet flame]], the energies of God, are always pulsating, always moving, and they are transmuting the records of the subconscious. Forgiveness is the fulfillment of the law in Isaiah, “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”<ref>Isa. 1:18.</ref>
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[[File:HainanSanya2-cropped.jpg|thumb|alt=caption|upright=1.2|108-meter (354 ft) statue of Kuan Yin on the island of Hainan, in the South China Sea]]
    
== The need to forgive ==
 
== The need to forgive ==
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[[File:0000214 kuan-yin-on-a-dragon-2331AX 600.jpeg|thumb|Kuan Yin riding a dragon]]
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If you expect forgiveness, then you must be ready to forgive seventy times seven, as the Master [[Jesus]] taught. “In small ways and in great ways, mankind are tested,” Kuan Yin says, “And the bigotry that remains in the consciousness of some is also a lack of forgiveness. Those who cannot forgive their fellowmen because they do not think or worship as they do—these have the hardness of heart that encases the flame of love and also prevents the flow of wisdom.”<ref>Kuan Yin, “Mercy: The Fire that Tries Every Man’s Works,” ''Pearls of Wisdom'', 1982, Book II, p. ''95''.</ref>  
 
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If you expect forgiveness, then you must be ready to forgive seventy times seven, as the Master Jesus taught. “In small ways and in great ways, mankind are tested,” Kuan Yin says, “And the bigotry that remains in the consciousness of some is also a lack of forgiveness. Those who cannot forgive their fellowmen because they do not think or worship as they do—these have the hardness of heart that encases the flame of love and also prevents the flow of wisdom.”<ref>Kuan Yin, “Mercy: The Fire that Tries Every Man’s Works,” ''Pearls of Wisdom'', 1982, Book II, p. ''95''.</ref>  
      
The mercy of the law is like a two-way street. It is the signal that you send to God and the signal that he returns. A two-way street means the give-and-take with God. If you expect mercy from God, then you must give mercy to every part of life. The fulfillment of the law of mercy must be for the ultimate liberation of each and every soul. Thus, as we forgive life, life forgives us.
 
The mercy of the law is like a two-way street. It is the signal that you send to God and the signal that he returns. A two-way street means the give-and-take with God. If you expect mercy from God, then you must give mercy to every part of life. The fulfillment of the law of mercy must be for the ultimate liberation of each and every soul. Thus, as we forgive life, life forgives us.
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As you give this prayer daily, you may wish to visualize the flames of mercy, which are a lovely pink-violet color, enfolding your being and removing the cause and core of many wrongs of the past. It is possible to experience a great sense of relief from burdens you may have been carrying for centuries as you call for forgiveness for your sins—even those of which you may not be aware in this embodiment—and then truly accept God’s grace and forgiveness that he is extending to you through the gift of his violet transmuting flame.
 
As you give this prayer daily, you may wish to visualize the flames of mercy, which are a lovely pink-violet color, enfolding your being and removing the cause and core of many wrongs of the past. It is possible to experience a great sense of relief from burdens you may have been carrying for centuries as you call for forgiveness for your sins—even those of which you may not be aware in this embodiment—and then truly accept God’s grace and forgiveness that he is extending to you through the gift of his violet transmuting flame.
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The color violet has many hues ranging from the orchid-pink of mercy’s flame, containing a greater saturation of the pink ray of God’s love, to the deep-purple flame that embodies more of the blue of the will of God. The purple flame has a greater electronic cleansing action, which, when used alternately with the healing green decrees, will effectively purify and heal the four lower bodies, especially the etheric body (the memory body) of the records of the past that may be buried deep within the subconscious. To invoke this flame, take any violet-flame decree and substitute the word “purple” for “violet.” Oftentimes it is more difficult to penetrate to the etheric body than to any of the other lower bodies, and therefore the repetition of a mantra thirty-six times can be very effective in clearing old records of past momentums.
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The color violet has many hues ranging from the orchid-pink of mercy’s flame, containing a greater saturation of the pink ray of God’s love, to the deep-purple flame that embodies more of the blue of the will of God. The purple flame has a greater electronic cleansing action, which, when used alternately with the healing green decrees, will effectively purify and heal the [[four lower bodies]], especially the [[etheric body]] (the memory body) of the records of the past that may be buried deep within the subconscious. To invoke this flame, take any violet-flame decree and substitute the word “purple” for “violet.” Oftentimes it is more difficult to penetrate to the etheric body than to any of the other lower bodies, and therefore the repetition of a mantra thirty-six times can be very effective in clearing old records of past momentums.
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[[File:0000165_kuan-yin-by-ruth-hawkins-2108AX_600.jpeg|thumb|alt=Painting of Kuan Yin by Ruth Hawkins|Kuan Yin, by [[Ruth Hawkins]]]]
    
== Service on the Karmic Board ==
 
== Service on the Karmic Board ==
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{{MTR}}, s.v. “Kuan Yin.”
 
{{MTR}}, s.v. “Kuan Yin.”
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{{POWref|31|57|, September 9, 1984}}
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''Kuan Yin’s Crystal Rosary'' booklet, introduction.
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Elizabeth Clare Prophet, July 1, 1988.
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Elizabeth Clare Prophet, July 5, 1996.
    
[[Category:Heavenly beings]]
 
[[Category:Heavenly beings]]
    
<references />
 
<references />
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