19 Nov Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 14
[Series of Master Shen-Long expounding on the Prajna Paramita (Perfection of Transcendent Wisdom) Heart Sutra]
Jesus, through his whole life what did he demonstrate? He demonstrated wisdom.
When he was crucified on a cross, he made the statement that he will resurrect in three days and then he proved it.
What did he prove? He does not have the phenomena of life and death. Therefore, he resurrected. He used this kind of education way to teach people at that time.
However, in the East, there was the Sixth Patriarch of Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism, Hui-Neng. The teaching of the Buddha was transmitted to China during an early time. Later it was annihilated in India, but in China it reached a great height of development. The most well-known story was about the Sixth Patriarch of Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism, who was illiterate and did not know how to write, like a person without knowledge.
When he went to see the Fifth Patriarch, the Fifth Patriarch asked him: “What do you come here for?”
He replied: “I come here to be Buddha.”
It was strange he answered this way, he was illiterate, how could he know?
He also stated that:
The mind of the disciple constantly expands with wisdom.
Wisdom is Prajna. We are not like him and if the Master were to ask us, we would say: “The mind of the disciple constantly generates afflictions”. This is for sure. For if you do not have afflictions, you would not become human.
The Chinese character for human is “人” and has a left-slanting brushstroke and a right-slanting brushstroke, which represents either “gain or loss, right or wrong, good or bad, virtue or evil, so on and so forth”; all behaves like the theory of relative opposites.
Let us look at the Sixth Patriarch, after he clearly understood the true facts of the universe, this so called “having achieve supreme enlightenment” means thoroughly understanding life in this universe.
What was this experience for himself? It is explained in the Platform Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch.
The Platform Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch was a recording of his words after he became enlightened. A “Sutra” is a guidebook. If we want to have enlightenment, we follow his method; this is the origin of Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism. Very simply, his method is to be disillusioned with all phenomena and to let go of all phenomena. His way of being disillusioned with all and letting go in a split second, and even if we cannot do it in an instant, we should try. Let us practice it for 10 years and see if it works or not. If we can let go of one grade of our delusional thought and attachment, then you will have one grade of wisdom, and one grade of Prajna; the purpose is to resolve this illusion of life and death. Although it is an illusion and you still need to work on it.