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THE Exalted One says:[3] (1-3)

Curses and blessings do not come through gates,[4] but man himself invites their arrival.[5] (4-11)

The reward of good and evil is like the shadow accompanying a body, and so it is apparent[6] that heaven and earth are possessed of crime-recording spirits. (12-28)

According to[7] the lightness or gravity of his transgressions,[8] the sinner's term of life is reduced. Not only is his term of life reduced, but poverty[9] also strikes him. Often he meets with calamity and misery.[9] His neighbors[10] hate him. Punishments and curses pursue him. Good luck shuns him. Evil stars threaten him; and when his term of life comes to an end, he perishes. (29-67)

Further, there are the three councilor[11], spirit-lords of the northern constellation,[12] residing above the heads of the people, recorders

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of men's crimes and sins,[9] cutting off terms of from twelve years to a hundred days. (68-87)

Further, there are the three body-spirits[13] that live within man's person. Whenever Kêng Shên day[14] comes, they ascend to the heavenly master[15] and inform him of men's crimes and trespasses. (88-110)

On the last day of the month the Hearth Spirit,[16] too, does the same. (111-118)

Of all the offences which men commit, the greater ones cause a loss of twelve years, the smaller ones of a hundred days. These their offences, great as well as small, constitute some hundred affairs, and those who are anxious for life everlasting,[17] should above all avoid them.[18] (119-147)

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