Tse Qigong Centre

Liao Fan's Four Lessons


During the Ming Dynasty (16th century China), Mr. Yuan Liao Fan wrote a book called, Liao Fan’s Four Lessons. Mr. Liao Fan was raised by his mother after his father’s death and was the fond hope of his father that he would become a doctor. However, one day Liao Fan met a fortune teller who told him that he would take the Imperial Examinations and obtain a government position. He continued on to tell him at what age he would receive a promotion and the payment that he would receive as well. He also told Liao Fan that, sadly, he would not have any children and would die early. He concluded saying that “Both fate and destiny are fixed.”


This one meeting changed Liao Fan’s life and he was content to follow the path that seemed to be set before him. As the fortune teller predicted, his job and promotion happened just as he had outlined. As a result, Liao Fan, did not have to be too ambitious and could use his leisure time to develop his interest in Chinese philosophy. One day he went to a temple to meditate. After sitting in meditation for one day and night, the monk there was impressed that Liao Fan could meditate so calmly and asked him his secret. Liao Fan told him that he did not need to worry about anything as everything in life was fixed.  The monk then laughed and said, “And I thought you were high level. Actually you are ordinary after all!”


Liao Fan was surprised and asked what he meant. The monk then explained to him that no matter what karma (fate/destiny) we are born with, our actions throughout our life affect this same luck, whether it be for the better or worse. He said, “If someone is destined to have good luck and yet throughout their life they do harmful and negative things, then this will affect their luck to be bad. If someone is destined to have bad luck, yet throughout their life they begin to help others and do more good deeds, then their luck will change to be better.”  After this he showed Liao Fan how to keep a record of his good deeds. Liao Fan then vowed to do 300 good deeds and after this first promise was complete, he found that his life did indeed begin to change and it no longer was following the predictions of the fortune teller. He and his wife later had a son which made him very happy.


It also made him more determined to do good deeds and so, with the help of his wife, he accomplished much and decided to write a book for his son, Tian Qi, so that he might be inspired to change his own fate to be better. The book relates stories of real people who practised good deeds and the results that it brought to their lives. Although this book was written over 400 years ago, the stories still are of value today.


Liao Fan’s Four Lessons has inspired people throughout the world and many organisations have made the book available for free distribution. It is available in both book and audio format and even as a movie. Please feel free to share this book with others. You are welcome to download the PDF print version of the book and also the audio version. As it is available, we will offer Liao Fan’s Four Lessons free through the book section of this website. There is also a version with commentary by the Buddhist master, Chin Kung, called Changing Destiny and we offer this as/when it is available as well.




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