Translator: CKtalon Editor: CKtalon
Fangzheng looked at the girl and smiled with a nod. “Of course you can. Thank you, Young Patron. Young Patron, can you help This Penniless Monk take care of this pitiful thing?”
The little girl nodded in joy. “Yeah, okay!”
When Fangzheng handed Squirrel over to the girl, he whispered into Squirrel’s ear, “Your mission is to play with her. Bringing people joy is a meritorious deed as well. If you do well, you’ll get an extra serving for dinner…”
Squirrel was quite unwilling initially. Although he wasn’t large in size, he was a squirrel with immense ambition! How could he let a child take care of him? He still needed to use his sharp teeth to reap the paddy, but when he heard the latter half of Fangzheng’s sentence, he realized that accompanying the child was also a meritorious deed which could also give him an extra serving! The little guy immediately forgot all his ambitions.
The next moment, the little girl carefully took Squirrel into her arms and didn’t mind how smelly he was. She carried him and ran to the side of the tent.
Before leaving, Squirrel rolled his eyes at Fangzheng. Fangzheng had carried him up by the tail! His master wasn’t as gentle and warm as the young patron, so he showed him a look of contempt…
By the side of the tent, the little girl poured water over Squirrel and used her other hand to wipe the mud from his body. By the side, the little boy watched while squatting. Finding Squirrel adorable, he chuckled in a silly manner. It did not take long before Squirrel was cleaned. He shook his body with force, ridding the water from his fur. It left the two children wet, but it also raised a series of pearly laughter.
They were children. Perhaps they would cry because of exhaustion, sleepiness, and hunger, but they would also be relieved of all their frustrations because of a very trivial matter and end up laughing happily.
Upon seeing the two kids laugh, Squirrel shook his body even harder like he was having a fit. In exchange, the two children’s laughter grew louder. Following that, Squirrel began running, bringing the two children to a ridge nearby. As they ran, they laughed. The hardships of life distanced themselves from the two kids at that very moment.
Fangzheng smiled inwardly when he saw this scene.
When they heard the children’s laughter, Zhou Zishan, Shen Aijia, and company also laughed. It was a very simple, honest laugh filled with purity. They were happy because their children were happy. This also seemed to lessen their fatigue brought about by the work.
“Master, what are they doing?” asked Red Boy.
Fangzheng said, “Here’s a mission for you.”
“What is it?” Red Boy asked.
“Ride Jingfa back to the village and bring three sickles for me,” said Fangzheng.
Red Boy’s eyes lit up. He immediately somersaulted onto the dog and shouted, “Set off, Husky!”
“I’m a wolf!” Lone Wolf rolled his eyes in anger, but he widened his strides and flew forward.
It did not take long before Red Boy came back with a sickle in each hand while Lone Wolf was storming ahead with a sickle in his mouth.
Far away, Zhou Zishan, whose back was hurting, stood up to take a breather. When he turned his head, he realized that the otherworldly monk dressed in pure white who had been standing by the bank like a supervisor was beginning to brandish the sickle… The scene left him startled.
Fangzheng felt like sunlight to Zhou Zishan, a young male adult who looked clean and bright. He had seen such boys on television. They were from rich families and were high and mighty scions. Perhaps, he might show them pity, but it would only be limited to that. In fact, Zhou Zishan was already very satisfied to receive Fangzheng’s kindness.
And when Fangzheng stayed behind after Wang Yougui left, he only treated it as though Fangzheng was being a supervisor, that he was worried about these foreign wheat hands.
Now that he saw Fangzheng holding the sickle, he could not help but shake his head. “How can a scion, a flower grown in a monastery, know how to use a sickle?”
At that moment, there was a clamorous din a distance away. Then, a combined harvester began driving. On the machine, Yang Ping shouted with the megaphone, “Abbot Fangzheng, the big guy in our village is here. Do you want to help to do some Light Opening?”
Fangzheng rolled his eyes. Light Opening? Augment it with blessings? Do you really think it’s that simple? Do you think it’s just a few lines of chanting?
Fangzheng didn’t know what Light Opening meant in the past, and he had asked Zen Master One Finger.
Zen Master One Finger had laughed and pointed at Fangzheng’s glabella and said, “Which kind of Light Opening are you referring to?”
“Of course, it’s the kind of Light Opening which augments something with divine powers after the blessing happens. The kind with Buddhistic aura protecting it,” said Fangzheng matter-of-factly.
“Child, where did you hear such nonsense again?” Zen Master One Finger said with a smile.
Fangzheng said, “On television, in novels. That’s what they all say.”
Zen Master One Finger shook his head. “Those are just erroneous rumors. There are three kinds of Light Opening augmentations I know of. The first kind is to cheat others of their wealth. Chanting a line from scripture and doing some useless ritual as a form of augmentation. There’s another kind which has an accomplished monk take the item you wish to augment. He will then give you a gatha or a sentence. If you figure it out, that’s a form of augmentation. If not, it’s just a thought. The Light Opening here is not referring to the item, but the person. The value of awakening a person is far more valuable than doing it to a dead object. The final kind is when an accomplished monk ‘really’ augments the item when they encounter hardheaded, ignorant believers. They recite the scriptures and hold a ritual to augment the item, but the augmentation here doesn’t imbue anything special to the item. It’s only about going through the hands of the accomplished monk.”
Fangzheng was taken aback. “Ah? Then isn’t the last kind also a form of cheating?”
Zen Master One Finger shook his head. “It’s different. To get an accomplished monk to augment it with Light Opening, the first thing is that it must be free. If one isn’t sincere, it’s impossible to have it done. This is extremely rare. Secondly, the devout believer trusts the accomplished monk greatly. So when the accomplished monk says that the Light Opening is done, they will believe him. When the accomplished monk says that the item will bring you fortune and good luck, warding off bad luck and relieving frustrations, the believer will believe him! Humans are such strange creatures. When they believe you, they will think that carrying such an item will bring them good luck. And they will pay more attention to things happening around them, especially the good things. Typically, if friends gift you a pen, you will not think much of it. But with an augmented item, you will notice anything that happens, believing that the item brought you good luck. You will think that your friend is good for gifting you an augmented pen. The more you pay attention to such matters, the better you feel. Being in a good mood will naturally drive a person. They will live a relaxed life and be full of motivation. This might seem like the work of the accomplished monk’s Light Opening, but in fact, it just involves a person’s change in their perspective of the world. For example, I made you look at things differently previously. When you can’t see the shadows and only the sunlight, the world will only become more beautiful.”
Fangzheng had stroked his chin back then and mumbled, “I see. It’s no wonder there are so few accomplished monks.”
Zen Master One Finger had nodded his head. This useless disciple of his had finally been enlightened.
Fangzheng continued. “Accomplished monks who don’t accept money have probably all starved to death. Master, is this the reason why we are so poor?”
Zen Master One Finger turned around. “Where’s my rolling pin? Fangzheng, don’t you dare run!”