"To brag so much, this monk sure isn't someone that knows his place."
"That's right, he might even be a fake monk!"
"This monk really knows how to brag. I wonder what will happen if Master Baiyun hears of this. Heh heh... If they are somehow related by discipleship, he will probably be slapped to death."
"Master Baiyun from Baiyun Monastery is like a godlike figure. How could he be bothered with him? If he really got involved, that would be some news!"
At the same time, there were people who went to Songwu County Hospital to gather information, and some even visited Lu Shuangshuang. Instantly, many people began to busy themselves because of Fangzheng.
On the contrary, Fangzheng was lying in bed laughing himself silly!
"Heavens! So much money? That fellow, Monkey, sure is generous. Hahaha!" Fangzheng was truly happy! He had been depleting the Crystal Rice, and he truly did not wish to continue eating ordinary rice. Even Lone Wolf showed extreme disdain towards the ordinary rice.
However, it was true that they were short on money. If they really finished eating the Crystal Rice, they could only eat ordinary rice.
He originally believed that the winter would be grueling, but he had suddenly gotten such a huge windfall. It would be suspicious if Fangzheng weren't happy!
As he counted his wads of cash in the meantime, Fangzheng realized that he really did not resemble a monk at all!
"System, look at me. I am not suitable to be a monk at all. Why don't you just let me leave the mountain?" Fangzheng mumbled inwardly as he lay in bed.
"Ding! You can choose to commit suicide and I will be able to choose a new Host."
"System, I mean it. Why did you choose me? Baiyun Monastery is such a large monastery, and there are so many monks there. You could have chosen any one of them." Fangzheng was puzzled. Why did he win this top prize?
"Buddha converts people and demons into Buddha, not Buddhas into Buddha. You are converting people, while I'm also converting people. You convert the humans of this world, while I convert you."
"Uh!" Fangzheng was surprised. With the System saying that, he was truly a little at a loss for words.
Fangzheng rubbed his nose and said, "The problem is, I really do not want to be a monk! You want me to become a master with such an attitude? Even if I become one, wouldn't I be a sham?"
"If your mind isn't there, you will never become a master. If your mind isn't there, you will never become Buddha. Becoming Buddha or becoming a master has nothing to do with one's martial strength or magical powers. It has nothing to do with others but only your heart."
"Then wouldn't I forever not become a true master?" Only then did Fangzheng realize the seriousness of the problem!
"Merit - a hundred times merit can similarly make you one! Others can obtain merit if their heart is in the right place. You will simply need a hundred times the merit of others."
Fangzheng asked, "Uh, can I ask how much merit is needed to become a master?"
"Others need a million merit points to become a master, while you will need a hundred million."
"Then, how much merit do I have now? I think I've done quite a number of good deeds, right?" asked Fangzheng.
"Persuading a person to do good or fulfilling their wishes gives 1 merit point. Saving a person gives 2 merit points. Making an evil person repent gives 4 merit points. You have a total of 16 merit points."
When Fangzheng heard that, he nearly blacked out! He had worked so hard for so long only to earn 16 merit points! How long would he need to earn a hundred million merit points? Immediately, Fangzheng felt like he was a fly sprawled on a pane of glass. The way ahead was bright, but there was no path!
"System, other than becoming a master, Buddha or something else, is there no use for merit points?" Fangzheng asked while feeling unresigned.
"It can be used to set off mistakes. If you were to violate the precepts, you can use merit to counteract them. If you do not have enough merit, you will have your negative karma increased."
"What will happen if my negative karma increases?"
"Indescribable. That can only be understood and not explained. You can experience it yourself."
"Experience- Experience it? Screw that!" Fangzheng cursed inwardly. Negative karma was something even Buddha did not want to be associated with in the Buddhist Dharma. Would he want anything from it? It was not like he was a fool.
"Forget it. It's a path I still have to take. I'll take it as it comes. Perhaps one day, the System will get infected by a virus and lose its powers," Fangzheng mumbled to himself. Once again, he had to continue on the forced path of being a good monk.
Nonetheless, counting money and walking the dog became Fangzheng's greatest daily pleasures.
The rice was quickly finished and with a wave of his hand, Fangzheng bought another hundred Crystal Rice seeds! He stopped eating ordinary rice and ate Crystal Rice cooked with Unrooted Clean Aqua every meal. He led quite enjoyable days. At the same time, his body was becoming fitter. His skin was turning more nourished, and he looked energetic as if he had inexhaustible strength.
Simultaneously, the bodhi tree in the courtyard experienced changes. The weather was turning colder, yet the fellow grew lusher. Instead of freezing to death as one would imagine, it ended up growing humongous leaves and was filled with vibrancy!
Regarding this, Fangzheng could only give it a big thumbs up and say, "To be able to be this awesome even while courting death. I'm utterly impressed by you!"
"System, are you sure this tree isn't going to develop a spirit and become a monster? To grow into this state in such cold winter..." asked Fangzheng.
"This bodhi tree absorbs the powers of Buddha and the incense fragrance, so it's unafraid of the cold. In the future, when the incense offerings increase, it will grow even better. In a thousand years or ten thousand years, perhaps it can develop a spirit," answered the System.
Fangzheng was surprised. "Then why don't such things happen in other temples?"
"How can a temple produced by the System be matched by mortal temples?"
Fangzheng was unable to respond. He patted the bodhi tree's trunk and said, "Fine, it looks like there's no chance for me to use you as timber for fire. Work hard."
With that said, he turned back to look at the quiet temple hall. He shook his head helplessly and said, "Sigh, why am I talking about others? Who knows which year the mission of me getting a hundred incense sticks will be completed. Up to now, there have only been two incense sticks..."
Fangzheng was about to reel in despair when on the second day, a loud shout frightened Fangzheng so much that he ran out of the kitchen. When he leaned over the wall, he saw a group of people marching toward One Finger Temple!
The people leading the way had no lack of long and short zoom lenses! However, there was not a single one that he found familiar.
Fangzheng was puzzled. What was the situation? Why were there so many reporters? Could the news of the Minor Rejuvenation Pill saving Xiaomi have been leaked? That wasn't likely. Even if it was leaked, no one would believe it. Would it have caused such a huge stir?
Just as Fangzheng was pondering over it, the group of people arrived at the temple's entrance. Fangzheng knew he could not hide as he went forward to welcome them.
Cai Fang was out of breath as he looked at One Finger Temple in front of him. He said bitterly, "We've finally arrived. I wonder who thought of constructing this darn temple in this godforsaken place. To think that Wu Changxi managed to find it. It truly wasn't easy on him."
A woman with a black mole on the corner of her lips said with a sneer, "I'm just afraid that it wasn't found by Wu Changxi but that this temple's monk has been tempted by secularity and got Wu Changxi to sensationalize the place. Nowadays, how many monks can you find that are truly dedicated to becoming Buddha? Speculating in stocks, spamming Weibo and even getting married to have children on a whim... Wasn't there a monk that claimed to be Nanguo Monastery's eldest disciple recently? He even ran out to showcase all sorts of martial arts to become famous, right? In my opinion, this monk here must have the same thoughts."
"Jing Yan, what you said is rather irresponsible. We are professionals that deal with the news. We can only speak the truth, so how can we guess haphazardly?" Cai Fang said rather displeased.