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After Fang Ning finished his discussion for Sir System, he reclaimed his body.
Then, he turned back to the old monk and said, “Bodhisattva, let’s put aside this idea of becoming a monk first. I still have a question to ask. Are you familiar with matters relating to the Saints from the Upper Realm?”
Fang Ning was not as straightforward as Sir System, for he still had a scheming streak, and would never ask someone else using questions as directly as “how should I become a saint”. That would expose his own weaknesses.
After all, in the eyes of others, Vigilante A’s cultivation path was the Path of Heavenly Punishment. This was already clear, so Fang Ning naturally would not overthrow this image, since he had actually relied on this image to resolve a lot of troubles.
That old monk heard his words and smiled. “Regarding the saints, I’m still familiar with them. In their early years, they worked hard to make progress in spreading their orthodoxy and educating all beings. During midlife, they conformed to the Will of the Heavens, balancing out one another. In their later years, they became conservative in thinking and afraid of death.”
“Then how did they gain their extraordinary powers in their early years? I’ve often heard people say that a saint’s true spirit reposes in the void, and that it cannot be robbed nor destroyed. Heaven and Earth may pass away, but the saint will survive. While all beings perish, the saint lives on,” Fang Ning proceeded to ask.
“Ah, death is not the end, but the rebirth of a new life. A flower must wilt, so that it can bloom again in different colours. If it’s ever abloom and never wilts, it would only be in one colour. When the saints are immortal and never change, they end up becoming extremely corrupt and decadent. The decay of the Upper Realm is precisely due to the appearance of these saints. There’s no need to follow their path.” The old monk did not give him an answer after all.
Fang Ning heard this reply and fell silent without providing a further response, since the reply was obviously in disagreement with his disposition.
“Among the deities and Buddhas, there are still those with great magical energy who are willing to submit to their fate and run their own course. There aren’t just those who, when facing their final hour, would only do their utmost to struggle against the inevitable, yet I would like to be the first god to die for the earth and heavens.” When the old monk saw that Fang Ning gave no response, he did not feel disappointed, but calmly continued to speak.
Hearing this, Fang Ning felt quite shocked. These few words from the old monk had fully encapsulated the ultimate mystery of the notion of the new replacing the old. Where there was no death, there would not be new life.
If living creatures did not experience death and new life, how could genetic mutation occur? How was it possible for a single cell to eventually evolve into humans with wisdom?
The saints from the Upper Realm would never die, so the Heavens and Earth could not receive new life, and would at last meet its end…
The Bodhisattva Spirit King only watched from aside without saying anything.
Meanwhile, Chong Daqing was drinking honey as it muttered, “It’s better to have a bad life than a good death. How can you eat anything when you’re dead?”
“Oh no, Mr. Rich Boss. It seems like trying to learn the path of becoming a saint from him is a fruitless attempt. No, this can’t be. Let’s not inherit his mantle anymore. I can forgo this. You better not be deluded by him,” Sir System anxiously advised at this point.
Fang Ning was immediately speechless. “Who was the one impatiently demanding to get the person’s belongings?”
“Who was it? Wasn’t it you?” Sir System feigned confusion.
“Of course it was you,” Fang Ning said grudgingly. “I knew good things don’t come without a price. This old monk’s level of consciousness is too high. We really can’t keep up with it, but this shouldn’t stop us from admiring him.”
At this moment, Fang Ning said to the old monk, “Bodhisattva’s words are indeed able to stir the hearts of the people. No words can express my utmost admiration for you. Your state far surpasses that of all beings. Please forgive me for not being able to emulate you.”
When something could not be learned, there was no use trying to do it anyway.
Fang Ning’s original intention was to just keep playing and having fun until the end of time. He did not have even half the ambition to abandon his own life for the sake of the earth and heavens.
Regarding this, he did not wish to be hypocritical and pretentious.
After all, since he could rely on Sir System for cultivation as well as to get through missions and Boss fights, his temperament never had to undergo any transformation, so he did not break away from his worldly attitude, and was still that programmer who was always gaming and lazing around in his rented room…
When mortals could live well, none would want to die. Although Fang Ning’s former life could not be considered as good, he at least had some fun every day, let alone his present life.
If someone else were to have his current cultivation and foundation, that person would have become either a formidable figure or a king. Only he would have remained in the bronze segment.
It was precisely because of this, that even though his cultivation had become stronger, he would not look down on others and treat them as if their lives were beneath his own…
“I’ll never force others to follow my practice. I only hope this new world won’t meet the same fate as the Upper Realm.” The old monk was indeed very clear-headed.
Right now, he could tell that this Venerable Dragon God would never walk down the same path as he, so he made no further comment on the aforementioned matter of giving away his house and food.
He turned back to the young man and said, “After I die, you will become me. There’s never been any difference between the incarnation and the real body, for the only difference that exists is in the mind, so do accept this spirituality of mine.
As soon as he finished speaking, his body shone with radiance as a ray of green light floated out from the top of his head and flew into the young man’s head.
The young man sat on his knees on the ground, silently receiving enlightenment from the ray of green light.
Fang Ning was bedazzled and stunned as he witnessed the scene, shaking his head while sighing.
“Aww, what a pity. The old monk is going to die,” Chong Daqing said in a depressed manner.
“What are you feeling sorry about?” Fang Ning curiously asked.
“Well, in the future, there’ll be one less place for me to get free food,” Chong Daqing sighed.
“…” Fang Ning decided to ignore this foodie.
“Kind people and devils are indeed different from each other. This monk was even willing to sacrifice himself for the sake of his incarnation,” he exclaimed to Sir System.
“It’s okay for you to show admiration, but you better not imitate his ways.” Sir System did not feel anything, as it was originally a heartless creature.
“Ugh, I always feel that we shouldn’t let good people have such short lives while the bad guys manage to live for a thousand years,” Fang Ning voiced his thoughts.
“This was the old monk’s own choice to die. What could we do about it?” Sir System also felt it a pity.
After all, this old monk was indeed a generous person for wanting to give away so many things just like that. It was a shame they could neither follow his path nor accept his gracious gifts.
“Right now, we may not know what to do. Let’s wait till some time later then. From what I can see, those in the Upper Realm are like a long-living group that is approaching their extinction. Every day, they claim to be dying, but even after a few generations have come and gone, they’re still alive and breathing…” Fang Ning delayed the matter out of habit.
“It’s a pity that I’m such a simple-minded system. Otherwise, I would’ve tried to trick him for his items before anything else,” Sir System nagged.
“Don’t you dare. In such a situation right now, you don’t even feel moved in the slightest bit, and would only remember those insignificant things,” Fang Ning scorned.
After an unknown length of time had passed by, that old monk finally completed the transference of the green light, and then turned to the others with his palms joined together devoutly as he said, “The sufferings of all beings come from the Earth and Heavens. Return to the Earth and Heavens, and there’ll be endless joy.”
Following that, a ray of golden light soared up into the sky, and the old monk’s body instantly vanished into thin air.
The young man placed his palms together devoutly, his face wearing a bitter expression.
“Bodhisattva, please accept my condolences,” Fang Ning consoled.
“Everything is destined to follow its course. In his case, he has obtained what he desired.” The Bodhisattva Spirit King shook his head and sighed before continuing to speak, “The Venerable One wanted to ask just now about the path of the saints from the Upper Realm. He didn’t want to speak about it, but I can give the Venerable One some information.”
“Oh, then I would humbly ask that the Bodhisattva tell me about it.” Fang Ning immediately recovered from his melancholic emotions.
After all, he was not very familiar with that old monk, but only admired the person for his high moral principles and self-sacrificial spirit. To say that he was very mournful would be an overstatement.
“There are only four saints in the Upper Realm, which are the three Taoist Saints and the ancestral god of Buddhism. In all the other worlds, there may be some with equal standing in terms of magical energy, but none of them managed to receive the official status of becoming a saint, so they couldn’t become saints. Just as what was said earlier, these four spread their teachings to all beings in their early years, which earned them great merits for the evolution of the Heavens and Earth. With that, they received recognition from the Heavens and Earth and, therefore, possess the qualification to become saints. As for their paths of cultivation, it didn’t matter as much, since as long as you polish your body and store up magical energy, there are many ways to go about it. However, without permission from the Heavens and Earth, no matter how great your magical energy is, you can never take that final step,” the Bodhisattva Spirit King said straightforwardly.
“Oh, I see.” Fang Ning came to a realization, and the fog of confusion in his mind dispersed in an instant.
It was no wonder that the Great Devil Saint Zhi Nan’s body double would turn against the real body and draw support from its powers to get rid of all the other incarnations.
The other party had already received the qualification to become a saint, and all that was left now was to conserve his magical energy. The biggest obstacle had already been overcome, and lying ahead was now a smooth path. Under such circumstances, how was it possible for him to hand everything over to someone else?
“All the paths of becoming a saint basically follow the path of merit. When the Heavens and Earth ceased to exist, those who are not saints would die as well. Without recognition from the Heavens and Earth, even if you had limitless magical energy and could rely on power fortification to break apart the Heavens and Earth, your own body would still perish along with it, so you would certainly not attain the position of a saint in that way. It’s only when the Heavens and Earth give you recognition that you can take this final step and transcend beyond them,” the Bodhisattva Spirit King explained thoroughly the path of becoming a saint.
Clearly, the enlightenment he received just now had allowed him to unravel many great age-old mysteries of the Upper Realm.
“Oh, I never knew that it was so simple,” Sir System suddenly said in a gleeful manner. “Now, I’ve figured out how to become a saint system!”
“…” Fang Ning was shocked. “What have you figured out this time?”
“It’s simple. We’re different from the others. There’s already a merit calculation method in my System Maxim. Collect a hundred quintillion merit points, and the system will level up to level-500. Then, won’t we naturally become a saint?” Sir System said in a matter-of-fact way.
“You really are simple-minded. Creating a Milky Way Nets Above Snares Below can only get the Earth and the Heavenly Axiom to grant us 30,000 Merit Points. Collecting a hundred quintillion points will take us forever,” Fang Ning scorned.
“Then, you tell me, what should we do?” Sir System retorted.
“This isn’t an urgent matter. Let me think it through first. If Zhi Nan can come up with such a method, we can also think of something similar.” Fang Ning did not have any ideas at the moment, so he could only stall the matter.
“What else do you need to think about? My idea is the only way ‘saint system’ can be achieved, so you just be obedient and do as I say. Stop being such a dilly-dally,” Sir System said in exasperation.
“…” Fang Ning could say nothing more.
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