MASTER SHEN-LONG | Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 31
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Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 31

Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 31

[Series of Master Shen-Long expounding on the Prajna Paramita (Perfection of Transcendent Wisdom) Heart Sutra]

(Last week we ended with,If you want to widen your breadth of mind, it is very simple: you accept all living beings, have no more divide, and no more ideas of I, you, or him; and then you will be happy.)

To have perfect insight of being master of one’s self Bodhisattva, you all should think attentively about this. If you want to be the master of yourself then you need to concentrate your efforts. At the time your mind activates with arising thought, put aside your distracting thoughts and delusional thoughts, concentrate to make the effort. Either you are preparing for a rainy day or you are worrying about this and that, remove them for the time being, and after a while, you will naturally benefit. This so-called benefit is precisely so that you can be in control.

The other importance to have perfect insight of being master of one’s self, it means one integrates with all living beings harmoniously. In the past, there was a gong-an (a study case in Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism) of a conversation between Su Dong-Po (1037-1101, a writer and calligrapher during the Northern Song dynasty in China) and Dhyana (Zen) Master Fu-Yin:

One day Su Dong-Po asked Dhyana (Zen) Master Fu-Yin: “What do I look to you?”

Zen Master Fu-Yin replied: “I see you like a Buddha.”

Fu-Yin also asked: “What do I look like to you?”

Su Dong-Po replied arrogantly: “I see you like stool.”

Later when Su Dong-Po returned home he told his younger sister what had happened. His younger sister was very smart.

She said to his brother: “Brother, this time you have lost.”

Su Dong-Po said: “I did not, he looked like stool to me, why would you say I lost?”

His younger sister replied: “The Master has a wide breadth of mind see you as a Buddha, because he is a Buddha. Your breadth of mind is that of a stool, so you see others like stools.”

After Su Dong-Po heard this, he felt very ashamed.

We all know Su Dong-Po was the fifth Patriarch of Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism –  Dhyana (Zen) Master Jie of another branch of Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism. He reincarnated next to become Su Dong-Po, and he forgot everything he had learned as a Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism Patriarch.

That conversations of his were pet phrases, and he acted recklessly out of instant pleasure. He received the answer and thought he had the upper hand, and thus, his younger sister hit the nail on his head with one word. We also are the same way, where you think “I have done all these good deeds, I am almost like a Buddha Bodhisattva”; you are having a dream. Or “I am atrocious and hopeless”, and you have these concepts which means you are imposing restrictions on yourself. Because these things are ways of behaving and looking at things in daily life. Or “I am an ordinary unenlightened one, this has nothing to do with me, I only need to be a good person and have a good heart and that is enough”; this is the source of your living afflictions. If you cannot see past them, then you will increase your afflictions and delusional thought, so your life will be lived awfully and without choice.

You say one’s life is good; one is also not living too badly.

You say one feels happy or not happy? One is unhappy and without happy feeling.

Since you are without any happiness, this means the whole day you are in the obstruction caused by suffering and misfortune.

What suffers the most? The internal spirit (soul) suffers the most.

The unpleasantness of the internal spirit (soul), one’s spirit is unhappy, there is truly no greater sorrow than a heart that never rejoices. We say, a true sadness is when the heart of a person dies and lacks the strength to live on.  However, the ancients of Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism have addressed:

Striking your minds down to let your Dharma (true nature) Body show.

Everybody knows this. This can be explained when your thoughts no longer indulge in flights of fancy, and the brightness of your life is recovered.

We often mention this matter of “brightness”, where truthfully speaking, very few people can see this brightness. Most people are unclear about what this brightness is. They mistakenly think that a little bit of happiness is this brightness.

What is this brightness? It is when you no longer have any worries at all and includes no more worry about the fate of life and death, and then you will have brightness. We originally have the condition of non-birth and non-extinction, and there was no transformation of birth and death. We made ourselves believe that these things happen. If you can change to having perfect insight of being the master of yourself, then you can release yourself from all the obstruction caused by suffering and misfortune.

>>Click here to read the full series of Master Shen-Long expounding on Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra

 

觀自在菩薩,這五個字大家細心想一想。你要「自在」,要下功夫。你起心動念的時刻,把雜念、妄想擺在一邊,專心去做。你未雨綢繆也好,你是耽心這、耽心那,暫時拿掉;久了,你自然得到受用。所謂「受用」,就是你自己能控制。

觀自在」還有另外一個意義,他是和眾生融合一起。過去有個公案蘇東坡和佛印禪師:

有一天蘇東坡問佛印禪師:「你看我像什麼?」

佛印說:「我看你像佛。」

佛印亦問:「你看我像什麼?」

蘇東坡說:「我看你像大便。」

就這樣。後來蘇東坡回去以後,把這個事情告訴蘇小妹。

蘇小妹很聰明她說:「哥哥你輸了。」

蘇東坡說:「我沒有。我看他像大便,怎麼會輸呢?」

蘇小妹就說:「人家的心胸寬大,看你是佛;因為人家是佛。你的心  胸是大便,你看人家是大便。」

蘇東坡聽了以後很慚愧。

我們都知道蘇東坡以前是禪宗某一派的祖師〈五祖戒禪師〉。他還做了祖師,轉到第二世做蘇東坡什麼都忘了。

他那個叫口頭禪。逞一時之快。他得到那個答案,他自以為佔了上風。結果波蘇小妹一語道破。我們人也是這樣子的。不得了,我做了這些善事,我都快變成佛菩薩了;你在做夢。或是我萬惡不赦,沒有救了;你有這些,就叫「劃地自限」。因為這些都是我們日常生活的行為、看法;或者我是凡夫,這跟我有什麼關連,好心就可以了,這些都是你生活煩惱的來源。如果你不能把它看通,你就會增加煩惱和妄想;那人生就活的無奈?

你說他好,他也不錯,物質不錯。

你說他樂不樂?不樂,沒有樂的感覺。

那你沒有樂,就是你一天到晚都在「一切苦厄」當中。

什麼最苦?心靈最苦。

心靈不樂,哀莫大於心死。我們講真正悲哀的,人心死了,活不下去了。可是古人禪宗講過:打念頭死,許你法身活。大家都聽過。你的念頭不再胡思亂想了,你生命的光明就恢復。

我們常常提「光明」這件事,說真話很少人見到光明,他搞不清什麼叫光明。他以為小小的快樂叫光明。

「光明」是什麼?是你對一切再也不耽憂了,包括生死都不再耽憂,你會有光明。我們人本來「不生不滅」,沒有生和死的變化。我們自己把它認為有這一回事。你若是變成「觀自在」了,那你就「度一切苦厄」

>>Click here to read the full series of Master Shen-Long expounding on Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra