On the Relationship between Doubt and Disease

Huaigu Wang
Huaigu Wang
Since 1995 till now, I have been following the kind mentor of BPI to start the journey on Buddhism....Read More

  Essay Writing of Buddhas’ Practice Incorporated
  (Issue 14)

  On the Relationship between Doubt and Disease

  Instructor: Bennie Spirit
  Shi Wuguang

  Author: Shi Ziju(Wang Huaigu)
  July 22, 2023

  The relationship between doubt and disease is one of cause and effect. This is true in all worlds. If a patient doubts the doctor’s guidance and prescription, or doubts the Kind Mentors and the Triple Jewel, cause and effect, the precepts, the spiritual powers of vows of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, or even the harms of vexations, he or she is bound to be afflicted with diseases and sufferings. Doubt inevitably leads to disease. The root cause of doubt is greed.

  Key Words: relationship of cause and effect, doubt, disease, root cause, greed

Chapter One: Introduction

  As a pre-study topic, this chapter first clarifies the motivation and purpose of this study, then explores the current status of the study from the literature review, and then gives a statement on the structure of the whole paper.
  When I was a child, I heard that many people suffered from various diseases, but I did not know why, not to mention furtherer why, I only thought it was a natural law that everyone could not escape, and it was very normal. When I grew up and studied Buddhism, I knew that the disease was caused by killing, and that it was also caused by divisive speech , not being filial to parents, and not respecting the Triple Jewel.
  However, I didn’t know that illnesses are related to greed, hatred, ignorance, arrogance and doubt, as if they have nothing to do with each other, and seem to be unrelated. In view of the fact that “the root of the disease is confirmed by the Buddha, and I can’t pick the leaves and look for the branches,” in order to dispel the confusion in my mind or other minds, the author will, based on my own studies of sutras ,papers and medical knowledge, make a preliminary inquiry into the root of the disease, so that we can understand more clearly the relationship between doubt and disease.
  The text is divided into four chapters, Chapter 1 Introduction; Chapter 2 What is doubt, what is disease; Chapter 3 The relationship between doubt and disease; Chapter 4 Conclusion, as the conclusion of this paper.

Chapter Two What is doubt and disease

  Before understanding the relationship between doubt and disease, we want to understand what doubt is and what disease is.
  What is the definition of doubt? In Volume 1 of the Explanation of the Mahayana Hundred Dharma Clear Door Theory, it says, “Doubt is the nature of hesitation in all truths and can obstruct the goodness of not doubting. The one who obstructs goodness is the one who does not have goodness because of hesitation.” Doubt is the opposite of faith, that is, unfaith , and in Buddhism it is considered an annoyance.
  As the Fourteen Fundamental Falls say, “Doubting all the pure dharma of self-nature is the ninth fundamental fall.” Another example is : “We do not care about the Dharma at all, but even if we have a little tea, we do care about how high it is, and we think that the teacher’s heart loves it or not, and that this is the rottenness of the heart. These are all specific phenomena of doubt.
  In modern times, there are many words for doubt: “suspicion”, “doubt”, ” harboring suspicion”. From this we can see the various specific undesirable manifestations of sentient beings’ skepticism, habitually disbelieving everyone, believing only in their own way, sometimes they do not even believe in themselves. But they are not aware of the disadvantages and hazards of doing so.
  Then what is the root of this doubt? In fact, as long as there is any kind of greed, it can lead to doubt. If there is no greed for one, how can there be doubt? There will be no doubt. Therefore, to investigate the root of doubt is still because people have greed. Those who have greed are bound to have doubts. That is to say, greed for money, sex, fame, food, and sleep can make people suspicious.
  What is disease? Volume 4 of the Brief Note of the Brahma Sutra Bodhisattva Precepts says, “The four great elements form the body, and there are four hundred and forty diseases.” In the story “The Doctor King of Human Medicine”, it is said, “When the Buddha was practicing the Bodhisattva’s Path an infinite number of kalpas ago, his heart was eager to save the world. When he saw the people in the world of Jambudipa , they were suffering from serious heart diseases, like a pandemic. All over the world, the number of mental illnesses is ten thousand times greater than the number of physical illnesses.
  Volume 79 of the Great Jewel Accumulated Sutra says: “I am in the sick and suffering beings who have no help and no support and cure their diseases. I now attain Anuttara-samyak-sambodhi, and also with medicine of great wisdom cure the ultimate suffering for all sentient beings.” As you can see, illnesses can be divided into physical illnesses and mental illnesses. Psychological disease is disease of annoyance, simply divided into five major diseases of greed, hatred, ignorance , arrogance and doubt, the fine points will have infinite dusts and sands of disease of annoyance .
  What is the definition of disease? Disease is the occurrence of abnormal life activity process of the body in a certain cause of the damaging effect, due to the self-stabilizing regulation disorder.
  Disease is a state of the existence of life caused by a certain reason, in this state, the human body’s morphology or function changes certainly, normal life activities are restricted or damaged, either early or late are in the manifestation of perceptible symptoms, the end of this state can be recovery or long-term residual, or even lead to death.
  Disease, like health, can be defined in different ways. The most commonly used definition is “deviation from the normal form and function of the human body”. Modern medicine has measured various biological parameters of the human body, the values of which generally obey the law of normal distribution in statistics, i.e., a mean value and a range where 95% of healthy individuals are located can be calculated.
  It is customary to call this range “normal”, beyond this range, too high or too low, is “abnormal”, the disease belongs to the abnormal range, that is, deviated from the normal form and function of the human body.
  On the other hand, in the case of a real disease, people usually think that a disease is only called a disease when a person feels a lot of pain. In reality, pain is only one of the real diseases, and even soreness, numbness, cold, heat and swelling are all diseases, including the boring and restlessness that we often talk about.

Chapter 3: The Relationship between Doubt and Disease

  The relationship between doubt and disease is one of cause and effect. In this world, if a patient doubts a doctor’s instructions and prescriptions, and refuses to take medicine, injections, or treatment, he will not be cured, and will be plagued with illness and suffering. The same is true in Buddhism. If one doubts the kind mentors, the Triple Jewel , cause and effect, the precepts, the vows of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas and the dangers of annoyance, one is bound to be afflicted with disease and suffering. This is the same in the world and out of the world , and doubt is bound to lead to disease easily.
  Once the doubtful minds of people arise, they find themselves directly floating, making people feel that they are duckweed, and they float around with delusion and bad karma and create bad karma wildly. But once the doubt of someone arises, he thinks he is a Buddha. Other people in his eyes is not a thing, and he thinks you are still doing something with me, can you go beyond the palm of my hand? Can Sun Wukong still run out of the palm of the Buddha’s hand?
  Because of doubt, the arrogance also came, inevitably with these annoyances to retaliate, plant stolen or banned goods, frame, and even to kill, make divisive speech, to eat and drink recklessly, greatly exceeding the amount of the basis of the body’s needs, being contrary to the rules of nature, the rules of cause and effect, the disease arises naturally, physical and mental illnesses are very easy to show completely.
  For example, some people are suspicious as deep as the sea, the bodies are originally fine, because of a thought of delusion coupled with the cooperation of suspicion, they suspect if they are not seriously ill. They have been so staring at that piece, have a bee in their head , the result is that they are originally not sick, and finally get sick firmly because of their own suspicion , staring out of a disease firmly, staring out of the disease phase.
  In the following I mainly prove the relationship of the cause and effect between doubt and disease from five aspects.

  Section I. Doubting the kind mentor and the Triple Jewel leads to disease

  The Bodhisattva Maming’s “Fifty Ode to the Dharma of Serving the Teacher” states, “If the Dharma seekers are contemptuous of the Teacher, then they will slander all the Buddhas, and they will always be subjected to all kinds of sufferings and afflictions. By increasing stupidity, they are rewarded in the present, held by evil deeds, bound by serious illnesses, forced by the king’s law, and stung by poisonous snakes.” Why do people despise and slander their masters? They often do not believe in the master, not believing is tantamount to doubt, and they will inevitably lead to serious disease tangling.

  Section 2: Doubting medicine leads to disease

  Because of doubt and disbelief in medicine, there are bound to be diseases. How do these diseases come about? We know that every food has its own characteristics, and those characteristics can also cure the problems of the human body, but once the amount of it exceeds a little bit, its characteristics will form a disease in the human body.
  However, some people doubt this kind of medicine, they are greedy as usual and will certainly be sick. For example, the moringa seeds are very nutritious, can also cure, but if you eat too much, you will run to the toilet again and again, in fact, that is called iron poisoning. Because the various nutrients of the moringa seeds inside are extremely high , that is, its iron is also extremely high. If people supply a little, they are all right, but eating too much is easy to get iron poisoning.
  People tend to eat the most deadly kind of sugar: fructose. There are many kinds of sugar, the most common is composed of glucose and fructose. Every cell in the body can metabolize glucose, but only the liver can break down fructose. Fructose does not initially trigger high insulin or increase blood sugar. However, fructose can cause fatty liver, inflammation, scar tissue and other damage. As the liver becomes enlarged, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome and high uric acid levels may also occur. Uric acid is the cause of gout, some kidney stones and arterial damage.
  In fact, the body processes fructose in the same way as alcohol. Despite its low glycemic index, fructose is deadly. For example, honey, cane sugar, beet sugar, high fructose corn syrup, etc. all contain 50/50 fructose and glucose. But agave honey contains 85% fructose, which makes it the worst kind of table sugar. Therefore, skepticism of medicine will inevitably lead to disease.

  Section 3: Doubting the Wisdom of Cause and Effect and the Precepts Leads to Disease

  If there is such a cause, there will be such an effect. If anyone doubts the wisdom of cause and effect and the precepts, there will be disease. For example, if one doubts that the cause of killing leads to the effect of disease, that is, if one does not believe that the cause of killing leads to the effect of disease, one is bound to kill, and one is bound to incur the bitter fruit of disease.
  Because of the doubt that the cause of craving will lead to the body eventually being paralyzed in bed, short of roots, or lacking in roots, one will certainly go on craving for food, drink, play and pleasure, and will certainly end up with all kinds of illnesses. Because of doubts about the wisdom of cause and effect and the precepts, that is, do not believe in the wisdom of karma and the precepts, will eat and drink a lot, eat and drink wildly, eat and drink indiscriminately, and ultimately will certainly suffer from diseases.
  In addition, because of the suspicion of the harm of gluttony, people do not believe, it is easy to go to gluttony. Because gluttony can produce good feelings instantly, but is immediately gone. However, after gluttony, it will form all kinds of diseases, and even if it forms one disease, people can’t stand it, not to mention that each disease develops in parallel.
  There is a great deal of authoritative American physician Dr. Berg’s explanation as an argument here. For example, eating too many carbohydrates, such as rice, wheat, etc. forms absolute damage and destruction of the liver, kidneys and other internal organs, diabetes, uremia will naturally follow. One of the most important reasons for diabetes is eating too many carbohydrates and eating a sugary diet too much, which triggers the production of insulin in large quantities, resulting in high insulin. If you want to lower insulin, you must eat less carbohydrates.
  But because people are so accustomed to rice, noodles, bread, and these carbohydrates, they don’t believe in medicine, he doesn’t believe in the Dharma, that is, they doubt the medicine, they doubt the Dharma, and he will definitely eat these carbohydrates, and he will definitely suffer from diabetes.

  Section 4: Doubting the power of the Buddha’s and Bodhisattva’s vows and merits leads to disease

  The powers of the vows and merits and virtues of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas are boundless and inconceivable, so those who lack good roots will not believe in them, will doubt them, and will cause illness. As the Sutra of the Merit and Virtue of the Past Vows of Medicine Master Vaidurya Light Tathagata says, ” The Sixth Great Vow: I vow that in a future life when I attain Bodhi, if there are sentient beings whose bodies are inferior and whose faculties are imperfect…various other sicknesses and sufferings, upon hearing my name they shall all become endowed with upright features, keen intelligence, and perfect faculties, and they shall be free of sickness and suffering.”
  And, “ The Seventh Great Vow: I vow that in a future life when I attain Bodhi, I shall cause sentient beings who are oppressed by many illnesses and who are without aid, without a place to turn, without a doctor, without medicine, without relatives, and without a family, who are poverty-stricken and filled with suffering to be cured of their sicknesses upon having my name pass by their ears, so they are peaceful and happy in body and mind.”
  But the problem is, if someone doubts the great vows of Medicine Master Vaidurya Light Tathagata to cure all kinds of diseases of the sentient beings, that is to say, if he does not believe in the great vows of Medicine Master Vaidurya Light Tathagata, he can not be able to obtain the Buddha’s great wish of upholding ,blessing and salvation, and lacks the strength of repentance of their own annoyance and bad karma, because of the relationship of the call of the bad karma, and ultimately he will suffer from diseases.

  Section 5: The Terrible Hypochondriacs Caused by Doubt

  Doubt can also cause a variety of terrible diseases, which is called hypochondriasis in medicine. Hypochondriasis, also known as hypochondriacal neurosis, refers to a neurological disorder in which one’s own feelings or symptoms are interpreted in an unrealistic and pathological manner, resulting in the entire mind and body being occupied by the resulting doubts, annoyance and fears.
  It is characterized by excessive concern for one’s own health and the holding of ineradicable prejudices. The patient suspects that he or she is suffering from some kind of disease that does not exist in fact, and the doctor’s explanation and objective examination are not enough to eliminate his or her opinion.
  Suspicion has a deeper impact on both the body and the mind, with the body experiencing localized symptoms of discomfort and the mind causing psychological disorders such as depression and anxiety, and in severe cases, neurological disorders. For example, they are afraid of suffering from a certain disease, especially a disease that is difficult to treat, such as cancer, AIDS, etc.; repeated visits to the clinic still do not feel at ease. This symptom makes the patient more doubtful about his future, and also causes long-term damage to his health and psychology.
  Due to increased suspicion, hypochondriacs will naturally aggravate the condition, the performance of the specific forms are:
  1. Bringing physical discomfort. Disturbed by negative emotions will have a sleep disorder, long-term sleep deprivation will naturally lead to vegetative nerve disorders, there will be chest tightness, dizziness, shortness of breath and other symptoms.
  2. Depression. Due to suspecting reasons will lead to patients to lose motivation for life, to worry about their own disease all day long, not to think of eating and drinking, and even not to carry out normal activities, and then lead to patients depressed, these are psychological diseases.
  3、Complication of neurological diseases. Long-term skepticism, suspicion, no matter what are suspected, it is easy to show neurological diseases, such as depression or anxiety disorders, once one suffers from this kind of disease, it also means he is far from happiness, is troubled by fear and anxiety, and have been worried about the disease.
  4. Due to the aggravation of suspicion, they are overly concerned about their own body’s abnormal sensations, and often make serious pathological interpretations, such as minor abdominal pain interpreted as tumor, having dim eyesight when being fatigued interpreted as glaucoma, etc. This kind of excessive concern and interpretation not only can’t be eliminated by the negative results obtained from various repeated examinations, but even can be aggravated continuously.
  In summary, suspicion leads to a wide range of terrible physical and mental illnesses.

Chapter 4 Conclusion

  Where there is doubt, there is disease. Where there is a cause of doubt, there is an effect of disease. If one does not want the effects of these diseases, he or she does not have doubts; if one wants to be free from doubts, he or she does not have all greed.


  1. Ancient Texts (in chronological order)

  1 [Tang] Noted by Kuiji:Chapter 1 of the Explanation of the Mahayana Hundred Dharma Clear Door Theory,vol. 44. Dazhengzang.
  2 [Tang] Written by Xuanjue: Songs on the Way of Proof of Yongjia, vol. 48 , Da Zheng Zang.
  3 [Tang] Translated by Bodhi Liushi: Chapter of Sutra of the Great Treasures Accumulated, vol. 11 of Da Zheng Zang,.
  4 [Tang] Translated by Xuanzang : the Sutra of the Merit and Virtue of the Past Vows of Medicine Master Vaidurya Light Tathagata, vol. 14 , Da Zheng Zang,.
  5 [Song] Translated by Richeng and so on: Fifty Ode to Serve the Master’s Dharma ,vol. 32, Da Zheng Zang,.
  6 [Ming] Stated by Hongzan: Chapter 4 of A Brief Commentary on the Bodhisattva Precepts of the Brahma-net Sutra” , vol. 44, New Continuing Collection,.
  7 [Missing dynasty] Translated by Fa Zun: Chapter 2 of the Extensive Treatise on the Order of the Bodhi Path , Volume 10 , Supplement to the Da Zang Jing.

  2. Others
  1 Encyclopedia of Medicine, URL: https://www.yixue.com/%e7%97%85%e7%90%86%e7%94%9f%e7%90%86%e5%ad%a6/%e7%96%be%e7%97%85%e7%9a%84%e6%a6%82%e5%bf%b5, Date of Retrieval: July 22, 2023
  2 Dr Berg (Dr Berg): The Deadliest Kind of Sugar,Natural Remedies, Website Name: youtube,URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0MK32dK0Ig,Date of Retrieval: July 22, 2023。
  3 Dr Berg (Dr Berg): Health knowledge : Diabetes 2, Diabetes Secrets, Main Cause of Insulin & Hyperglycemia, Website Name: youtube,URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0MK32dK0Ig,Date of Retrieval: July 22, 2023。
  4 A+ Medical Encyclopedia >> Skepticism, Web site : http://cht.a-hospital.com/w/%E7%96%91%E7%97%85%E7%97%87,Date of Retrieval: July 22, 2023。
  5 What are the dangers of hypochondriasis, Web site : Zhihu, URL : https://www.bohe.cn/article/view/218412.html, retrieved on July 22, 2023
  6 Overview of Hypochondriasis, Web site : Zhihu, URL : https://zhuanlan.zhihu.com/p/438160589, retrieved on July 22, 2023

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