Liu Gen's encounter with a divine figure, becoming an immortal who summons ghosts, and the shocking revelation to Shi Qi about his parents as ghosts.
Liu Gen, with the courtesy name Jun’an, was a native of Chang’an in Jingzhao. During the reign of Emperor Cheng of the Han Dynasty, he ventured into Mount Song to study Daoist arts. There, he encountered a divine figure who imparted the secrets of immortality to him, thus transforming him into an immortal who could summon spirits. The Prefect of Yingchuan, Shi Qi, suspected Liu Gen of being a demon and sent his men to summon him, intending to kill him. When Liu Gen arrived at the Prefect’s residence, Shi Qi challenged him, saying, “If you can make people see ghosts, then make these ghosts appear. If you fail, I will have you killed.” Liu Gen calmly responded, “This is quite simple. Please provide me with a brush and inkstone in front of the Prefect.” He then used the brush to inscribe a talisman on the table. After a brief moment, suddenly, five or six ghosts appeared, leading two prisoners right in front of Shi Qi. Upon closer inspection, Shi Qi was shocked to discover that the ghosts were none other than his own parents. They bowed before Liu Gen and said, “Our son lacks manners and deserves to die a thousand deaths.” They scolded Shi Qi, saying, “As a descendant, you should not only honor your ancestors but also avoid offending immortals to the extent that you have brought such misfortune upon your parents!” Overwhelmed with sorrow and regret, Shi Qi cried and kowtowed to apologize to Liu Gen. Liu Gen quietly and swiftly departed, disappearing without a trace.