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Interview with Supreme Master Ching Hai by Radio for Peace International May 26, 1994 Taipei, Formosa (Taiwan)    
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*I am Dr. Richard Schneider,broadcasting live from Taipei,Formosa (Taiwan). As my guest tonight,I have Supreme Master Ching Hai. Today we have been at an exciting and extraordinary event,the International Human Rights Conference,which has been sponsored by Master Ching Hai's Association. The reason for this interview is we want to give a voice to the pain of the refugees of the world,and I believe there is no better voice for that pain than Master Ching Hai. Master Ching Hai,what do you want the world to know about the refugee situation?


You see,last month your radio station has helped broadcast the suffering of the Vietnamese refugees inflicted by the government because they have monitored nearly 2,000troops,armed forces,and used hundreds,hundreds,hundreds of tear gases to oppress these people. Also mace was sprayed directly onto the children and women,and pepper fog was sprayed from the air by the airplane,etc.
 
 
This caused a lot of damage to the people,bodies and minds. Some people mentally disturbed,some people are still burnt all over the body,and some people,some children,still cannot see because of the mace and the tear gas. So now,we would like the world to know that this is not the way that the human being should treat another human being,especially in the near 21st century.
 
 
And after all that Jesus has taught us,after all the Buddha has taught us,we should have learned better than this. And refugees come here to us,to our feet,for refuge,for some safety corner of the world,and we should respect their human rightsrespect their dignityand help thembecause it could be us. It could be that one day we become refugees,because the war always goes on from one country to the next. We never know when it becomes us. And God always says you have to love our neighbors,yes.
 
 
So we hope that the international people will open more their doors,accept the Aulacese (Vietnamese) refugees. You see,I think the people agree. It's the problem,stuck with the government: if they decide not,then the people cannot do much.
 


*It seems to me that average citizens,though,can certainly write,call their governments,make a noise about this. That will perhaps begin to make a small wave that could conceivably become a larger wave. How can the citizens of the world help in this situation,help what you're trying to do?


Maybe they could write to the newspapers,supporting our idea. Maybe they could write to their government. Maybe they could write to the United Nations. Also they could write to us. We have a formula,and if they could just sign in agreement and we will submit these signatures to the UN and to other governments concerned to let them see that the people's opinion is supporting the Aulacese (Vietnamese) refugees. So maybe the government will change their policy and open their arms to receive these unfortunate people.
 


*I understand,Master,that you have made certain concrete proposals about what you are willing or able to do?(Yes.) Could you tell us about that?


Right. We are willing to donate whatever we have,our property,in case any nation is willing to accept these refugees. Also,we will try to help with manpower,different expertise people,in order to train those who have not skills in any job,so that they will be productive to the world,instead of being a captive in a prison-like condition. Because that serves no one any good. I don't know why they don't let people out and work for them.


 

*Now,I understand you were at the camp recently. (Yes.) Could you tell us about that?


Yes,we were at the camps because the government has used violence to hurt these unarmed and weak people. They are already weak with hunger strike,because they want to voice their love for freedom. And then the government wants to stop the hunger strike perhaps,but using violence,using arms,and beating and forcing and kicking - this is not human standard.
 
 
Therefore,we go there with about 3000disciples and sympathizers for the Aulacese (Vietnamese) refugees all over the world,in order to have a meditation,prayer,for the Aulacese (Vietnamese) refugees; also to voice our objection to this violent treatment to the weak and unfortunate people,as well as to persuade the Aulacese (Vietnamese) people to not carry out with their 『commit suicide』plan,because they planned to commit suicide en masse.
 
 
At that time they,some of them,told us that they will not do it. But the other camps say that they cannot stop some of the people who either hunger strike to death or mutilate themselves,yes,and it already… It happened. They did not do it on the set date of 30th of April,but then they continue to hunger strike until recently,in middle of May.
 
 
And then because they kept waiting too long with hunger strike - and the government does not bother about them,does not take their request into consideration - so some of them also try to commit suicide. Some are in critical condition,but nevertheless,we heard that they are still alive. Yes.
 


*I understand that some of those children were born there,in that refugee camp,and have never been outside.

Never ever.
 


*Tell us about the children.


Well,what can I tell about children who have no freedom,who never know any sun outside the barbed wire,higher than six of you put together. And children,some of them do some painting,and all they paint is a cubic-like living quarter and barb wire,and frightening dog claws and things like that. A child is a child,and if they are born and forced to live in such conditions,this is really unbearable. It is above everyone's imagination.
 
 
But the policy is above humanitarian. Actuallythe law is to protect peoplenot to use the people to protect the law. But this is the case of ignorance. So we hope that human beings will raise their standard of conscience,(*Conscience.) otherwise our world will become hell.
 


*But certainly it will take voices like yours to do that,and you speak of it,and I sense and feel the pain that you feel for these people. Not only are they people of your own heritage,but they are human beings,and I feel this pain and I support this pain. My concern is getting the world's attention. Getting their attention and then having that attention diverted into action,into concrete action,and saying,『Listen,this cannot go on.』It's only people who can stop it.



Yes. Well,I have been and am trying my best and still will try. I do not know the result out of my effort,but I think somehow it will make some change somewhere,even in some corners of the world. And the more change,the better. And also,we need someone like your group who supports us and who carries our voice across the ocean to different listeners of different corners of the world. And if we can change one corner,and you change another corner and another person changes another corner,then,of course,we make some progress.
 


*Make some progress.

Yes. Yes. (That's great.)*

People also need some good guidance.
 


*They do need,(Yes.) that's right. What occurs to me is with the state of the world today,there's probably never been a time where there's been more need than there is now. I was reading not long ago that a Visha Suerna said,『My God!My God,an age!What age thou has cast me!』And that was in the 1500s. And it seems like we go through these painful cycles.

Again.
 


*But now with the population of the world so large,the pain has been magnified so significantly.

Right.
 


*How do you see this in spiritual terms?

I see that God wants us to change our way of life,our way of thinking. We have to lean more toward loving compassion instead of material craving.  Yes. But it needs some physical voice also in order to explain these phenomena and to drive home the main point of this,you can say,planetary disaster. Otherwise,people take it for granted. They do not think about it,and they don't. They wonder why but they do not go into deeper study and they will not take a measure and thus they would not do anything to alter it. Yes.


 

*At this International Human Rights Conference that we both attended,I was very impressed that you had like 1,300,000signatures on a petition that you presented. Could you tell us about this?Because I think this is one of the avenues that may make a difference.


Yes. We also collected… In one and a half days,we collected over 100,000signatures in Hong Kong - at that time when we were in Hong Kong. And these over one million signatures were collected during one week,one week's time,in Formosa (Taiwan). This is to support the refugees,to request the Formosan (Taiwanese) government to accept the refugees.
 
 
So we hope that Formosa (Taiwan) will do it. That's why these people,who signed this,are supportive of this idea,that Formosa (Taiwan) should receive these Aulacese (Vietnamese) refugees. Because they need them. And there are so many Formosan (Taiwanese) who go out every year,so if they take,even 60,000of the Aulacese (Vietnamese) refugees or 40,000,it's not much!
 
 
Not much. And also they can use them for working force,which they need in Formosa (Taiwan). And besides,we will support them,every other means,anyhow. No problem. Really,they should take them. Any country,if I am a president of any country,I'd take them right away,no consideration,especially when there is such a group,standing by,and helping financially,and as manpower-wise,if need be. So I don't know why any government doesn't consider this.
 
 
It's so easy - they don't even have to do anything. We will do everything. We move them,we transport them,we train them,we find jobs for them,we find houses for them. The government just signs 『okay,』and then get international prestige,reputation. And why don't they do it?I think the world is… Something's wrong with the world.



*Well,it sounds like quite a few nations need their attention concentrated on this issue.

They're supposed to protect people,( *That's right.) take care of people - any nation at all. So long as these people are not criminals,are not infesting any misbehavior into the society,and are willing to work,why not?Why should we think of ourselves as a Hong Kongese or American,instead of thinking we are citizens of the world?Before we were born,there were no America,no Americans,no Hong Kong - nothing!
 
 
It's only God's land. We borrow itGod granted to us to stay for a while,( *Right.) and each of us can stay only 100years. Why territory conflict?Why hoarding all this that doesn't belong to you in the first place?Even if you are Governor or you are President of the United States,you are there only for a few years.


And afterwards you are just a private citizen; nobody even bothers about you. Why don't you just do something good?



*There's so much opportunity to do good,and yet there is so much inaction,( Yes.) politically. (Right.) You know,inertia,if you want to call it that.

Inertia,yes.
 

*And this inertia,it just keeps people from doing what they need to do.

Right.

*Some of these people even know ( They know.) what they need to do.Yes,but they don't do it.


*But they don't do it.

Something's wrong with our world,definitely.
 


*Right. And obviously the only ones that can change it are we human beings,ourselves,right?And if we don't do it,it isn't going to get done,if we don't try.

Yes,we have to try,definitely.
 


*It has to be done.

Yes,I have no choice.

*That's right.

I have to help them until the last resort is done.

*Right.

Otherwise,I would also… never can sleep. I cannot forgive myself.

*Right.


Because nobody else does it now,and if I also go to sleep,then that's it,good-bye. Good-bye morality,good-bye humanitarian,good-bye loving kindness,good-bye God's entrusted covenant: 『Love each other,like you love yourself.』
 
 
Everyone is the children of God. If you love Godhave to love your neighbor. That is what God entrusted to us to do,in order to grow,as angelic beings,as children of God,as a representative of the Most High on Earth. And what we do?Do we ever represent HirmWe do if we help one anotherif we love one another the way God loves us,see?But we try not to do it,we try to forget this; and something's wrong with us. Right.


 

*I heard you say earlier today,you gave a reason,an explanation,for why we have refugees and these kinds of problems. Would you speak to this?I thought it was a very…

Yes. Because war!Because the greed of a few ambitious and vicious people. These are the victims of a few political manipulators,yes. They have done nothing wrong except wanting the basic human rights that every of us has in plenty,and every of us wanted - just freedom,just a corner of the world to work,to earn their living,to live out their life that God has allotted to them,to take care of their children,be productive to the country. War,war is the worst enemy.
 
 
But also,we are the worst enemies of ourselves,because we do not remember what God taught us to do: to love one another.  We don't remember we come with empty hands and we go with empty hands,and now we're trying for a few years,short in this Earth,to try to grab everything to ourselves,and then accumulate bad retribution for our next life. Or when we go and face God,God will ask us,『I gave you so much money,so much property,what did you do with it?Did you give my brother?Did you give my son,who came to your door?』No. At that time,you'll feel sorry and it's too late.

*Yes,thank you.

Yes.


 

*It seems to me that,of all the critical issues in the world today,certainly population is a very,very critical one. ( Right.) Of course,it extends well beyond the refugees,although this is our main concern. (Right,right.) But,could you speak on the population of the world today - I mean,you know,we're bursting at the seams.



It will balance out. Besides,it's not the population. It is ourselves that do not love each other. Otherwise,there are so many people who are so rich,they don't know what to do with their money,they go out gambling,take drugs,and girls and all kinds of extravagance - for nothing. And then other people who have nothing to eat. So,it is the imbalance of this world that causes war. So,you see what I mean?(



 
*Right.) War and greed.

*You are an extraordinary example of the kind of changes we need in the world,and of course,there aren't enough of you to go around. And I'm sure you get very tired with this,but your people have done,do,so many good works - I see so much good work going on in so many places - and it must be an inspiration to you to see this happening. What can be done to further support this?



We continue our work,and hoping other people will join,by our example. I try to help my disciples to understand their own goodness and develop it,and that's what they are doing. That's why you see they are doing good work,because they develop their own goodness.
 
 
Many people need to be pointed outto point outthe goodness within themselvesthe Kingdom of God within. That's what we're doingthat's what my meditation teaching's doing. It bears fruit.You can see through my disciples. ( *Very,very much so.) So that's the thing that encourages me to go further.

*That's quite good.
 


*Now,you have refugees who have incorporated your teachings?

Yes,yes,yes. Yes,we have many hundreds of refugees who were also disciples,inside. I do not intend to help them alone,therefore I help the whole,non-discriminating,(*Certainly.) no condition.
 


* We want to give you as much international voice as we can. You know we've been very supportive of what you are trying to do,we're very happy,the Radio for Peace International family,(Thank you.) to give you the widest,loudest voice possible. (Thank you so much.) And I think it's our working together that is going to be really fundamental if this is going to be done,and the message is going to be heard. (Thank you.) What last thoughts might you offer to the world?
 


Everyone should remember that we represent God on Earth. So everything we domust consider it will be God-like qualityand that's the only thing that can remind us of the original Heaven.  As our Father is so good,we should be also a replicaa copy of it.


*Well,with your voice and with your message,there's a lot of people beginning to hear this,and this is very,very encouraging. And you certainly have our full and complete support in this,and we appreciate all the kinds of things that you are doing. The University of Global Education and Radio for Peace International awarded Master Ching Hai its highest award,The World Citizen Humanitarian Award,today,and she accepted it on behalf of all the people that are doing the work,(Right.) and yet we know that those people had the leader that made it possible. You are pointing the way,and we have enormous respect,profound respect,for you. (

Thank you.)
 
This is Dr. Richard Schneider,reporting live from Taipei,Formosa (Taiwan). I might add,it's in the middle of the night here in Formosa (Taiwan),and so I appreciate (Over midnight.) your staying up (It's all right.) very much,and speaking with us. And we wish you the very,very best,and our profound gratitude for making a difference in the world,Master Ching Hai.

Thank you. We try. Thank you,all the audiences. Thank you,Dr. Schneider.



*Fear seems to be driving a lot of people's thoughts,(Right.) and I'm not sure how to put it into a question. I just want to know what you think. (About fear,and how to drive it away?) It seems to be so prevalent in (Yes,everywhere.) decision-making.

Right,right. You are right.


This is evil force. Fear paralyzes every inspiration and courage. So,the only thing to drive away fear is enlightenment.  Only after your enlightenment,every corner is clear. So you are not fearing of the unknown,you see?(*Yes.) Your walk is illuminated. That's the only thing that can defeat fear. That's the only thing I know. And besides,even after enlightenment,maybe your fear has not gone away,but you don't fear your fear,you don't let your fear drive you,but you just accept it. 『Okay,I fear. I'm fearful,I fear this thing,I am afraid of that thing,but so what?I still do it.』(*One more question?And then that's it.) Please,any question.
 


*Okay. When I saw you in December,I believe it was,in Portland (Yes.) some of your disciples were talking about UFOs and how we watch 『Star Wars』now and 『E.T.,』(Yes,yes.) and these are to try and get us somewhat thinking about the possibility of aliens,(Yes.) and so that implied that you believe that aliens exist?(Yes,they do.) And I was wondering what part you thought…
 
Do they answer to the same God?I assume that they must. Do they think of things spiritually?Do they have any influence over,say,the refugee problem?Say,the Bosnian problem?(Yes.) Rwanda…?

Yes,yes,yes. They have influence. There are good ETs. Good ETs help us,sympathize with us,and influence,sometimes silently,about some of governmental decisions or the world trend.



*What do you think they would get out of that?What would they get for themselves from that?

The good ones are trying to work for the universe. And the good ones believe in the same God that we believe.

(*Yes.) Yes. Yes.
 


*Thank you very much. I have enjoyed this very much,and if we have another opportunity - we're leaving Saturday,I think - we would all think that a great honor.

Tomorrow we have maybe Buddha celebration,Buddha birthday,so you are invited (*Really?Thank you.)
 


*Thank you. We very much appreciate your staying up…

No. We appreciate your staying up.


*It was wonderful. Flew all the way over here,we might as well have a good time. (

Yes.) Together,


* we can change the world.

Yes. I hope so. Well,for me this is normal,very normal. Most of the nights,I am awake. I just hope that my effort will help the refugees. I don't mind if I die. I don't mind if I die for them.
 


*I'd say it already has.

*And we want to do whatever we can to support that. (No problem.) That's why I think things like recognition are important,because what we can do is let the world know that there are people doing the right thing,(Yes.)for the right reasons. The world needs to know this. The world needs to know there are examples.



Actually today,we're also the 『United Nations,』because we are human beings together. We have to help each other. Who else is there?ET we cannot see. (*That's right.) God,we don't know yet.
 


*We get so much pleasure out of helping than we do hurting.

Right.
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