MASTER SHEN-LONG | Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 65
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Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 65

Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 65

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

(Last week we ended with, “A beginner may have problems understanding this, but it does not matter, you can try to apply the preceding concept of all materialistic phenomena are not different from no phenomenon as the impermanent existence nature; no phenomenon is not different from all materialistic phenomena in your daily life. If you truly cannot experience it, then use the chanting Amitabha method to calm your mind.”)

Today we explain: There is no wisdom, and nothing can be lay hold of. The word No and nothing is without attachment. This “without attachment” has many meanings, it can also be “no phenomenon for its impermanent existence nature”.

The ancients stated Three Insights: The study of 1. all as no phenomena, 2. all as unreal, 3.  the middle ways; so, without attachment to “no phenomena”, without attachment to “the unreal”, and without attachment to “the middle ways”. The “middle ways” expresses I am without attachment regarding either “no phenomena” or “unreal phenomena”; but again, I am probably having attachment to the thought of “I have no attachment”. This kind of syntax and phrase, we have already discussed a lot this so-called “without attachment” situation in the preceding chapters.

Here this wisdom represents Prajna in all.

We speak about Prajna Paramita and have spoken before about needing to have Prajna to detach from the suffering sea, but here it explains that there is no need for Prajna and no need to attach to Prajna. What does it mean?

This no attachment to Prajna has a situation; precisely you row the boat, and you use this boat to go to the other shore. In the end, you have landed to the other shore and disembarked; do you still need this boat?

For some people, one still carries this boat on one’s shoulders and becomes a burden.

Therefore, this wisdom represents all Prajna wisdom. This Prajna wisdom is the moment that one is completely without attachment, and then true wisdom will manifest. If you do not have attachment to Prajna this is true wisdom, then you will progress to a further tier. Just like the method of having the purely natural way of behaving in harmony with the true nature of all things, we talk about “effortlessly achieving the way of enlightenment leading to nirvana”.

The 41 Mahasattvas with embodiment of truth, all have eradicated at least one unenlightened condition. Between the first grade Bodhisattva with the embodiment of truth (as the 41st of 52 cultivation tiers) and the status of absolute universal enlightenment Bodhisattva of the Perfect Teaching school (as the 52nd-cultivation tiers), there are more than ten grades of difference, and their unenlightened habits also differ greatly with each one, but they all practice the method of having the purely natural way of behaving in harmony with the true nature of all things.

So how to distinguish each one’s cultivation within the method of having the purely natural way of behaving in harmony with the true nature of all things?

It is already having the purely natural way of behaving in harmony with the true nature of all things; how to distinguish them? It is to distinguish from their unenlightened habits.

Therefore, it is called the condition of there is no wisdom, and nothing can lay hold of. To lay hold of expresses how we have wisdom now, the head is clear, and we need to detach from afflictions. We call this way of thinking or this concept, the concept of wisdom, the concept of Prajna.

However, here it explains nothing can lay hold of, so the concept of gain or loss do not exist, the concept of Prajna also is non-existent. Because wisdom and to lay hold of are still the tools; up to this level one still needs to let go, precisely this way can eradicate the unenlightened conditions.

If you say: “I have eradicated the unenlightened condition today”, then it is all finished; you still have the concept of “I have eradicated the unenlightened condition today”.

If you truly have eradicated the unenlightened condition:

  1. You are selfless.
  2. You do not have the unenlightened condition concept.
  3. There is no attachment in your mind when your last grade of the unenlightened condition gets eradicated.

Regarding practicing this method of having the purely natural way of behaving in harmony with the true nature of all things, strictly speaking, all recedes from one’s previous position before one attains the Bodhisattva of the 8th Stage (as in the 48th level of the 52 levels of cultivation). This kind of receding means your mind still has fluctuations.

Where is this fluctuation from? It is caused by subtle attachment to “I-self”.

This subtleness is to what extent? Even you yourself cannot detect it.

For instance, now you are at the first grade Bodhisattva with the embodiment of truth, then the second grade of Bodhisattva sees that you still have attachment, then from the third grade Bodhisattva to see the second grade and the first grade all have attachment. So, for the higher-grade Bodhisattva to see the lower grades Bodhisattva, all have attachment; however, the first grade Bodhisattva is unable to tell the higher grades.

Just like how we constantly talk about how after we are in the Bliss World of Amitabha Pure Land, our way of living is exactly Amitabha’s way of living. Is there any difference between you and Amitabha? There does not seem to be any difference.

However, Amitabha sees that the curvature of our activated mind with arising thought is too great, but for us to look at Amitabha, you could not tell. Of course, he is perfect and without movement, but we cannot tell that there is any difference between him and us. Like how we look at ancient eminent monks, their appearance is no different from us, and they act the same as us by eating, drinking, going to the toilet and sleeping. The only difference between them and us is that they leave here with their heads clear and when we leave our heads are unclear; it can only appear from this place.

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

 

今天講「無智亦無得」。這個「無智亦無得」的「」字在這裡當「不執著」。這「不執著」有很多的意義,也可以把它當「空」。古人有講「空、假、中」,「空」不能執著,「假」也不能執著,「中間」也不能執著。

這「中」表示說我空不執著,假不執著,可能又執著一個「我不執著」。像這一類的句法語句,所謂不執著的現狀,上次我們都講過很多。

這邊這個「」,代表所有一切的般若。

我們講「般若波羅蜜多」,講過說要脫離苦海要有般若;這裡又講不要般若了,不要執著般若,這話怎麼講?

這個不執著般若有一個狀態,就是你划船,你用這個船划到對岸去,結果到了對岸以後,上岸了,這個船還要不要?

有的人,他還是把這個船扛著走,變成一個負擔。

所以這個「智」的本身代表所有一切般若智。這般若智,最後不執著的時候,真正的智慧就顯出來。你不執著般若這個真智慧,那又是再進一層了。

就好像無為法中,我們講「無功用道」。四十一位法身大士都是破了無明的,那你說法身初住的和圓教等覺,這個中間差的位次很多,差十幾個位次。無明習氣也差很多,問題是它們都是無為法。

無為法怎麼分?已經沒有為了,它到底怎麼分?它就是分這個無明習氣。所以叫「無智亦無得」。

這個「得」字,表示說我們現在有了智慧,腦筋清楚,我們要脫離煩惱。這樣的想法,這樣的觀念,我們叫做智慧的觀念,般若的觀念。

可是這裡講「亦無得」,得失的觀念也沒有,般若的觀念也沒有。因為「智」和「得」本身還是工具,到這個地步還要再放,就是這個破無明。

你說「我」今天「破無明」,那完蛋了,你還有一個「我」今天破無明的觀念。

如果你真的破無明:

第一, 你就沒有我。

第二, 你也沒有無明的觀念。

第三, 你什麼時候破到最後一品無明,你的內心都不執著。

這個「無為法」,嚴格講八地菩薩以前都有退轉。這退轉就是你的心還有波動。

這個波動怎麼來的?細微我執造成的。這種細微到什麼程度,你自己都無法查覺。

譬如:你現在是法身初地菩薩,那二地菩薩來看你,你有執著。那三地菩薩來看,二地、一地的菩薩都有執著。層次越高往下看,他們對有執著。可是初地的菩薩往上看,他看不出來。就像我們常常講,到了極樂世界以後,我們的生活方式就是阿彌陀佛的生活方式,那你和阿彌陀佛之間有什麼不同?好像沒有什麼不同。但是阿彌陀佛看我們,我們那個起心動念,弧度太大了。但是我們看阿彌陀佛,你看不出來。當然他是圓滿沒有浮動,可是我們看不出來他跟我們有什麼兩樣?就像我們現在,看過去古代的高僧大德,他們的樣子長得跟我們也沒有什麼差別,他們還是一樣吃喝拉撒睡。他們和我們唯一一點不同就是他們走的時候腦筋清楚。我們走是腦筋不清楚。只能從這個地方來顯現。

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