When San Zang and his disciples enter the Jisai Kingdom, they discover a land that was once blessed and prosperous, but has fallen upon an age of ruin because the precious treasure that sat atop the kingdom’s Golden Temple has been stolen.
Not long before, the temple’s treasure provided a golden illumination that many felt was the blessing of the gods. But when the treasure was stolen the light was snuffed out, and all the surrounding lands that bestowed gifts and wealth upon the Jisai Kingdom in exchange for the temple’s blessing have long since stopped paying dues.
Angry about the kingdom’s sudden shortfall of material wealth, the citizens of the kingdom convince their king that a band of Buddhist monks have stolen the treasure and persuade him into severely punishing them. The monks are entirely innocent of the crime, since they have no need or desire for material wealth, but that makes little difference to the materialist citizens of the kingdom; their covetous nature is so profound that they don’t care if those punished for stealing are guilty or not — they simply want someone, anyone, to pay for the things they no longer have….
MONKEY KING Volume 16 by Wei Dong Chen & Chao Peng, pages 162, 170, 171