Bliss and Wisdom successor guru Mary Jin’s extravagant lifestyle exposed – luxurious mansions in several countries; introducing the secretive Marco monks in control of Bliss & Wisdom
Bliss and Wisdom’s successor guru Mary Jin Mengrong, whose name means “golden dream lotus” in Chinese, has always been shrouded in secrecy. An enthusiastic netizen has resourcefully collected information on Mary Jin’s mansions. According to the pdf article, one of the legends perpetrated by Bliss and Wisdom says:
When Master Jih-Chang first saw the lady guru, the lady guru was an ascetic practitioner. Even when she saw fashionable clothing on the high street, she saw them as no different from burial shrouds, and would have no desire to shop. She refused to eat delicious food, and lived in poor conditions. Her hair was kept short. Seeing that, Master Jih-Chang gave her some teachings to uphold for the reset of her life, “Keep your hair long, eat well, live in a nice house. By that I don’t mean a normal, comfortable lifestyle, I mean live like a wealthy person, so that in future you will be able to teach the dharma to wealthy people.
From then on, the female guru kept waist-length hair and purchased luxurious houses worldwide filled with extravagant designer furniture, in order to fulfill Master Jih-Chang’s wishes.
Marco Polo Villas in Yunnan, China: Where it all began
Some examples of villas in the Marco Polo Villas district situated in Yunnan, China:
Marco Polo Villas is home to the very wealthiest in Yunnan province. According to an informed source:
Mary Jin has two houses in Marco Polo Villas. A neighboring one belongs to Chen XX Hsiang.
A total of 4 houses adjacent to Marco Polo Villas belong to: Lai XX Yuan, Chen XX Hui, Ven XXZheng, and Ven XXYin.
2 houses in Xiamen, and houses in Shenzhen belong to Lu and his wife, as well as a certain Senior Brother’s wife. There could be more properties, but that’s all I know. They used Bliss and Wisdom’s money to buy these luxury homes, claiming that they were for the purpose of propagating dharma in China.
In 2014, finances were tight at Bliss and Wisdom, so Senior Brother Lu gave a call to Mary Jin’s old associate Li XX Ping, asking for the houses back. Li told him he was welcome to come to China. After arriving in Kunming, Lu was immediately arrested by Chinese police and held in detention. Lu phoned Senior Brother Lai in Taiwan for help. Senior Brother Lai contacted Harwa Rinpoche in Beijing, and finally secured the release of Lu. Lu returned to Taiwan empty-handed, and angrily declared that he would not have anything to do with sangha money any more.
13 houses were swallowed by Li.
According to the other source:
There’s more than one house belonging to Bliss and Wisdom in Marco Polo, because some of the Senior Brothers also purchased houses, so I’m not sure how many there are in total, but there should be at least 5.
The price listed is in Renminbi, equivalent to around 160 million Taiwan dollars.
But this price wasn’t the price they bought it for ten years ago, so we can’t realistically accuse Mary Jin of buying an NT$160 million house. Back then, she may have spent only NT$20-30 million buying each house, but the prices have soared these years. Excellent investment acumen! Isn’t she practicing Master’s teachings very well?
Marco Polo Villas is where the secretive and powerful Marco monks’ organization was born. After Master Jih-Chang passed away, only a handful of monks were aware that Mary Jin had been thrust into place as successor guru. Only selected monks had the right to travel to Yunnan from Taiwan to meet Mary Jin. Those monks formed the Marco organization, and were known as Marco monks. Till today, only Marco monks are allowed to live together with Mary Jin in her mansions. Not even Ven Ru Zheng, who was the abbot for more than a decade, enjoyed this right.
Although there are only dozens of Marco monks, the Marco organization is divided into a hierarchy of nine levels. Only the highest-ranking monks may live together closely with Mary Jin. The lower-ranking monks are at the mercy of the higher-ranking monks when it comes to speaking to Mary Jin, or having any personal contact with her. Besides Ven Jing Yuan, very few senior monks are in Marco. Most of the Marco monks are capable and handsome young monks, including several proficient in foreign languages like English, French and German. These young monks perform executive and managerial roles in Bliss and Wisdom. Marco also includes some novices from the child intake (預科班); the lower-ranked ones have to focus on studying Buddhist teachings, cooking, cleaning and serving the community; the higher-ranked ones make up Mary Jin’s closest attendants. A running joke amongst other novices is that one has to be very muscular and at least 1.8m tall to stand a chance at becoming Mary Jin’s attendant. Indeed, most of Mary Jin’s attendants are above 1.8m tall. Nevertheless, the monks and novices in Bliss and Wisdom see admission into Marco as their ultimate goal, enabling them to live and learn closely with their guru, but only a select few can be admitted.
Mary Jin’s chief attendant, Novice Ru Fa, entered the monastery as a child, back in Master Jih-Chang’s time. He is now in his 30s and has yet to receive his bhikshu (full monk) ordination. In the sangha, he wields more power than the abbot. All of the most important strategic decisions in Bliss and Wisdom are decided by the Marco monks – finance, manpower, construction, the dharma enterprises and businesses, the monks’ curriculum, and even the invitation of lamas and geshes. Senior monks are excluded from these decisions. Only less important decisions, which have no impact on Bliss and Wisdom’s overall strategy, are made by general consensus according to the Buddha’s vinaya rules (羯摩), such as who to ordain as novice monks.
According to former abbot Ven Fan Yin, and second abbot Ven Jing Ming, senior monks have been sidelined by the Marco monks, placed under surveillance, hindered from teaching other monks, and are unable to participate in important decisions in the organization.
This distorted power structure is nowhere more evident in Ven Xing Rong’s letter on 16 May this year. His letter highlights numerous internal problems faced by the monks, but interestingly, is addressed not to the abbot but Novice Ru Fa. According to Ven Fan Yin, Mary Jin is more secretive and inaccessible to the monks than the Dalai Lama. Therefore, if the monks have any problem or dispute to raise, instead of seeking help from the inaccessible Mary Jin, they find it easier to report to Novice Ru Fa. Since the abbot has almost no power within the monastery, raising problems with the abbot would be a fool’s errand.
Gold Coast Villas in Yunnan, China
Gold Coast Villas is situated opposite Marco Polo Villas. According to the source:
There are about three or four houses here, bought with funds from Bliss and Wisdom Foundation. Of course, the value of the houses has surged tremendously. But back then, the lady guru had a Mainland Chinese man called Li Yan XX, who was always by her side, and kept praising her in front of the monks, but did not rely on her as his guru. When Ven Jing Yuan tried to force him to recognize her as his guru, he left. When he left, many properties owned by Bliss and Wisdom in China were transferred to his name, but I don’t know what happened afterwards. So what is the status of those houses now? Let’s ask the lady guru and the sangha.
Examples of houses in Gold Coast Villas:
According to the source, Mary Jin has numerous mansions in Prince Edward Island, Vancouver and Toronto.
The successor guru’s lakeside mansion, and her father’s two bespoke seaside mansions are not the only ones. There are definitely more houses than in Yunnan. Between Vancouver and Toronto, there should be at least three houses.
The Marco monks, who have moved to Prince Edward Island, have set up base at 2661 Heatherdale Road in Montague, around 20 minutes drive from GEBIS (Great Enlightenment Buddhist Institute Society). The Marco monks lucky enough to live in 2661 don’t necessarily get to come into contact with Mary Jin, because there are a few houses in the 2661 compound. Mary Jin lives in a teak house in the compound. So Marco divided itself again – only a handful of “Teak House monks” are allowed to live together with Mary Jin and enter the teak house. Ven Xing Rong also mentions this system of segregation in his letter.
Looking at 2661 from Google Street View, the houses are situated quite a distance from the roadside, perfect for Mary Jin’s privacy. Former BW monks, including two former abbots, allege that Mary Jin sexually abused young monks and novices in her house.
Mary Jin’s sister, Jin Mengqiu (金夢秋), has also immigrated to Prince Edward Island, and will need a house to stay in as well. Years ago, Jin Mengqiu and her husband brought their son to study in Singapore. In around 2016, she brought her son, born in Oct 2005, to Prince Edward Island. This young boy is now in the sangha and has been recognized as Master Jih-Chang’s reincarnation by Mary Jin herself.
The lady guru is physically weak. Canadian winters are long, so people have to remain in their heated homes for days on end. It’s too much for her to bear. So under Ven Jing Yuan’s guidance, they also bought a few houses in Singapore, so that Mary Jin can avoid the cold. Of course, landed property is very expensive in Singapore, and only the wealthy can afford it.
Mary Jin’s mansion in Singapore has been leaked online, and is situated in an expensive high-end residential area. From Google Street View and Google Earth, a swimming pool can be seen in the compound.
According to information posted on the internet, 1A Wilby Road was listed for sale 7 years ago, valued at 18 million Singapore dollars (NT$400 million).
Finally, the source also states:
Besides that, based on the information we have, there are houses in Lhasa, Shenzhen and Xiamen.
In Taiwan, do you think that just because the lady guru doesn’t come often, she is unable to put Master’s teachings into practice?
Don’t worry, she has two houses in Yangmingshan, those are definitely very pricey high-end bungalows. They also collected funds to build one in Hushan. Logically speaking, there should be houses for her near Fengshan Monastery in Hsinchu, and the future headquarters in Miaoli.
Mary Jin says:
The advice given to me by Master Jih-Chang to eat well and live comfortably, pertain only to me. Master Jih-Chang gave me that advice to help me change my habit of ascetism. You monks should still live simply like Master Jih-Chang himself did, be a simple monk. You guys practice your path, I will practice mine.
Finally, a very interesting story to end off：
Initially there was a monk who did not understand that the lady guru is having a painful time dealing with her habitual asceticism, and saw that she bought too many luxurious houses. He could not help but tell her, “Guru, our organization doesn’t even have enough money to propagate the dharma, can’t you just purchase one house to live in? Don’t keep changing new houses.” The lady guru faced this ignorant disciple squarely and said, “Isn’t making offerings to your guru a direct cause for the Buddha’s teachings to spread?” Between a guru and her disciple, every thought should be for the sake of spreading the teachings. The lady guru pointed out the crux of spreading the teachings, which is that everyone should practice guru devotion, and practice eliminating our attachment to materialistic pleasures by offering what we have to our guru. That is the fastest way for the teachings to spread!
What do you think?