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Question: How to help a kid who might be possessed? Sometimes, there is waking up with crying, and speaking ‘gibberish’ at certain times, with preferring of dark and cold places. 

Answer: There are 10 steps to consider, which are applicable to adults too. [1] First, ascertain if it is a medical condition. See the usual family doctor for advice, to also see if there is need to refer to a counsellor or psychiatrist. [2] Ask the child in private (without parents and sibling/s around) on whether anything happened to trigger the behaviour. [3] Ask the sibling(s) in private (without parents around) the same question. [4] Ask her parents the same question. Thereafter, ask all together to reconcile different views if needed. If steps [1] – [4] do not work, proceed to the next steps [5] – [10]. (The cause of the problem can be a combination of interconnected reasons.)

[5] When there is waking up with crying, immediately console and ask why there is crying. [6] Note carefully what is said, and at what times. [7] Note what is done at the dark and cold places. Increase bright and warm lighting to ensure these places minimally exist. [8] Chant Āmítuófó’s name (阿弥陀佛) sincerely and personally ‘live’, while holding a glass of clean water, walking around the whole house, including the dark and cold places, using clean fingers to sprinkle the blessed water throughout.

[9] Get a Śūraṅgama Mantra (楞严咒) pendant for the child to wear. (The Buddha taught in the Śūraṅgama Sūtra (楞严经) that those who wear the mantra will not be disturbed by unseen beings.) Standby a Rebirth Blanket (往生被) which has many protective mantras. Wrap the child in it when going through one of the ‘sessions’ above, (if not wearing the pendant).

[10] Get a Buddha name chanting device (念佛机) and play Āmítuófó’s name 24/7, to remind all at home to be mindful of Buddha when hearing it, while doing everyday things, to bless all at home. Every day, sincerely practise mindfulness of Buddha in the child’s presence, surrounding the child, for at least 15 minutes, once in the morning and evening, and at the timings mentioned above, before anything happens. Do the above until the disturbing signs cease.

[X] If there is likely to be unseen being(s) around, the following should be read aloud before chanting Āmítuófó’s name: ‘On the behalf of _____ [name of child], we sincerely apologise for all the mistakes he/she had done to cause you suffering. As the Buddha taught, the suffering from hatred cannot be ceased by more hatred. As such, may you forgive him/her. We will also do much good to share merits with you, to ease your suffering. After we chant the following “Verse For Repentance” on everyone’s behalf, may we Niànfó (念佛) together sincerely, until you see Āmítuófó come to guide you to his Pure Land, where there is no more suffering, where there is only bliss. Please follow only Āmítuófó and no one else.’

Verse For Repentance (忏悔文): ‘Of all my past created evil karma, all by beginningless greed, anger and delusion, from my body, speech and mind as arisen, for all I now express repentance. (我昔所造诸恶业,皆由无始贪瞋痴,从身语意之所生,一切我今皆忏悔。) [Recite thrice, prostrating before Buddha image once after each time] Āmítuófó, Āmítuófó, Āmítuófó…’ End with sharing of merits using Verse #5 at https://purelanders.com/2019/12/15/guidance-text-for-the-dying-deceased-visitors-n-karmic-creditors.

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