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A Buddhist medium, Master Kek Eng Seng of the Tze Bei Guan Yin Dhamma Center in Georgetown, Malaysia, says he can travel mystically through the realms of Earth, heaven and hell — and recently offered to take a group of 50 people, including news reporters, with him.

Along for the tour was Beh Yuen Hui of the Asia News Network and Chiang Kee Chuan from China Press.

More than 200 from all around Malaysia registered for the trip.

“Some were taken off the list through a screening process, based on the birth dates that were unfavourable with the timing of the tour. Pregnant women and those having their period were also turned down,” Beh reported. “Finally, the number of Hell travelers was brought down to slightly more than 50, including a dozen reporters from the Chinese dailies and yours truly.

Beh’s account of what happened next:

It had been raining almost the whole day on Thursday and Friday but Saturday was sunny.

Master Kek claimed that he had appealed to Guanyin [the Buddhist goddess of mercy] to stop the rain for our trip to the afterworld.

As night fell, the group, all clad in white shirts symbolising purity and sincerity, gathered at Padang Brown in Georgetown for the “tour.”

After some prayers and rituals, we were all set to start our journey at around 10:15 p.m.

My eyes were covered with a paper talisman wrapped in a yellow cloth. Then, the lights were switched off.

As I listened to the chants by Master Kek, my head became very hot, as though there was a stream of warm air trying to get out of my body through the top. (Master Kek later explained this by saying that my soul was trying to get out of my body.)

The feeling came three to four times but was gone within minutes.

I tried hard to concentrate but my mind was distracted by the sounds from a Chinese opera show nearby and noises from the watching crowd. But I refused to give up.

About 45 minutes after the “tour” began, I saw lights and followed their direction but I soon fell into darkness again with some circles flying towards me.

It was like watching a science fiction movie with a spacecraft traveling through a stream of meteoroids. (Master Kek later explained that I was passing through a whirlpool while on my way to hell.)

But, I was again distracted by the noises and failed to enter hell.

Soon, Master Kek called for everyone to return. The process lasted about one hour and 15 minutes. Unfortunately, only about a dozen people in the group claimed to have managed to break the barrier and enter the realm.

Chiang from China Press reported better success — although none of the fire and brimstone ordinarily associated with hell:

“I saw a rainbow hanging on a beautiful sky, and a monk advised me to become a vegetarian.”

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