VISIT TO THE HAND-ROASTING PRISON
Tse Kong who manifested on November 26th, 1977. Year of the Snake
uddha Tse Kong
uddha Tse Kong: Upon the summit of the snowy mountain, snowflakes flutter softly. Time flits by swiftly and it will soon be the end of the year. My advice to my disciples is to forsake their butcher’s cutlass and abstain from creating malevolent karmas. Yang Ts’ien, climb up on the dais.
Ts’ien: The cold
is frigid. I don’t think I can stand it. Will you gratify me with one
of your miracle-pills Master?
This is a psychological effect. How can you be afraid of the cold
as being a spiritual entity? Well, I’ll give you a pill anyway, since
I am generous by nature. Here, swallow it quickly, and let’s go.
Thank you, dear Master. Please forgive me of my ignorance and
What prison shall we visit tonight? Why doesn’t the
Mandarin-Governor come to welcome us? I see no one but the guards
escorting the souls on the road.
Wait a moment and you’ll see.
Now, I see. Before us is the Blazing-Heat Prison we visited last
No, we now visit the prison of Hand-Roasting. To reach it, we
have to move along that nearby alley, which is adjacent to the
But the heat is scalding. How could we walk on the alley? The
feet of this profane man would be barbecued.
Just relax, my boy. I am by your side. The heat will cool off.
Please perform a miracle, Master! Or else I will be unable to
step on that alley paved with red-heated bricks.
Look sharp! I’m going to use my fan to cool down the heat on
the alley so we can safely walk on it.
Miracle of miracles! Your power of a Buddha’s is great! The
alley is instantaneously cooled. A few souls precede our steps and they
are safe and sound. The rest of them are astounded. They look right and
left for a moment, then rush on to the alley.
Follow me quickly. In an instant, the miracle loses its effect
and you won’t be able to step on the alley.
Aha! We make it! I had to stride hard and stay close to you.
Well, here they are. The Governor and his Generals seem to be waiting
Let’s present them our greetings.
My respects to His Excellency and to the Generals. I am Yang
Ts’ien of the Temple of the Sages in Tai Chu. By order of God, my
Master Buddha Tse Kong and I, are coming here to gather information for
a book on hell. We hope to receive necessary assistance from you.
Mandarin-Governor: Welcome to you, gentleman. We are greatly honored
to learn that the judgments of our palace will be mentioned in the book
of “Voyages to Hell”. Please come inside for observation.
Thank you for your kindness. I see an inscription above the door
of the prison. It says “Hand-Roasting Prison”. Sentry-guards are
seen on both sides.
Mandarin: Please, come in.
Already, I hear resounding cries.
Pitiful cries are heard in all the prisons, just as the moans of
the sick people, calling for help.
The prison is equipped with modern scientific instruments. The
hands of the sinners are securely tied to an axle-tree of heated iron.
The iron axle, which is a good heat conductor, gets hot quickly. The
souls struggle vainly to tear their hands from the axle. Their hands are
red embers, their faces are streaming with sweat and tears.
Mandarin: Our prison is called Hand-Roasting
Prison. In the past we made use of flatirons to press the sinners’
hands. But later, we improved our procedure by imitating the ingenious
rack-tools of the humans. I shall have some sinful souls come to talk of
The world of the living and that of the dead adopt the same
principle. That is, as the proverb goes, “the wicked are corrected by
Mandarin: These are Venerable Buddha Tse Kong and
his disciple Mr. Yang Ts’ien of the Temple of the Sages in Tai Chu.
They are here to prepare a report for warning living beings. Tell them
the crimes you committed and the punishment you have endured so far.
They will serve as a lesson for mankind.
soul: I led
the life of a libertine. My hobby was to hide in a dark place to tease
and coax the woman and girls passing by. I repeated my foul acts many
hands were undisciplined ones. Now they are making up for their
impertinency in this prison.
in life, I had the mania of inciting the people to sue each other for
justice, then I helped them write complaints and gained profits. I made
a living with this stratagem. After my death the King of Hell
reprimanded me, saying that I had used my hands to write complaints and
do harm to others. Therefore, my hands must be roasted in return. No one
shows me any pity. I suffer excessively and pray you, O Buddha, to come
to my rescue.
As a person specialized on writing about complaints, why don’t
you send a petition to the King of Hell to obtain amnesty?
soul: I’m afraid to create more trouble when
dealing with the King. He is so rigorous and impartial.
I know he is. But if you address your problem to me, I cannot do
anything for you.
allow yourself to make supplication. To the third soul now.
third soul: I was the keeper of a gambling-house.
With sleight of juggling hand, I amassed a lot of money. My living
standard was greatly improved thanks to this easy way of getting rich. I
kept leading a dishonest life and created harm to society. Furiously,
the King of Hell condemned me to 30 years of detention in this prison.
My hands are daily broiled to embers, and I endure terrific pain.
Keeping a gambing-den is by itself a grave crime. Cheating is
doubly sinful. You created bad karma for yourself. I’ll tell you what!
After being here, you will be reincarnated as a man with two inert and
paralyzed hands. I advise humans to wake up and abandon their passion
for gambling. To the 4th soul now.
my life, I used to swindle and deceive other people by signing checks
without sufficient funds. I was condemned to this prison after my death.
I had thought that every matter could be settled, provided that I could
escape from my creditors’ search. Now, I realize that it is not so,
because hell is without escape.
principle, you must pay off your debts.
But, you had intentionally swindled your creditors. Now, you have
to suffer in return.
Nowadays, many people in the world issue false checks, and then
flee away. They must be punished severely in hell. In their next
reincarnation, they will wear the forms of buffalos and horses to pay
off their debts. Since early ages until now, no one has been able to
escape from the karmic law, even if he commits the least of sins. Living
beings must pay attention to the law of karma.
the 5th soul, you seem to be in the clouds. Unpack your goods now.
soul: I pray
you not to ridicule me. I’m going to give an account of my past
crimes. In my life, I was a member of a gang of hooligans. I committed
harmful acts jeopardizing the security of society. I was very aggressive
toward anyone who showed antipathy to me, or anyone who dared to stare
at me. I would beat them without cause. After my death, the King of Hell
ordered the buffalo-headed and horse-faced demons to castigate me and
beat me in return. This reminded me of the times I did harm to people
and force them to submit.
was a tool in your life. You attacked your fellow beings and committed
bad actions that impaired the security of society. Your fists were so
hard that they need softening with the fire of this prison. Do you
It’s quite late. We have to go, Yang Ts’ien.
We ask to take leave, Excellency, and thank you greatly for your
my pleasure to help. Muster your men, generals.
Go ahead to the lotus dais.