MASTER SHEN-LONG | Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 17
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Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 17

Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 17

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

I talked about “chanting Amitabha” just a moment ago, what is the meaning of it?

Let us examine the word “chanting 念”; the Chinese word combines the two characters of “今” which means “now, at this very moment”, and “心” which means “mind (heart)”.

This is what situation?  “At the moment”, it is precisely in this instant your mind is not confused.

Why do we speak of “chanting Amitabha”? Chanting Amitabha is exactly in this instant your mind is crystal clear and fully understanding.

“Buddha” represents absolutely and abundantly clear. Everyone, do not misunderstand, this is not merely to imply a line of verse – Amitabha; it is not.  The original meaning precisely wants you to be without delusion every second – this is called chanting Amitabha. Over time, due to the fundamental ability of all living beings becoming worse and worse.

What is the fundamental ability? It is the ability of implementing and comprehension.

Therefore, chanting Amitabha can be divided into three kinds: the most simple and common being to rely on the name of chanting (mindfulness) Amitabha.

What is relying on the name of Amitabha? Chanting the name of Amitabha, originates from the Infinite Life Sutra; the Buddha speaks Amitabha Sutra. Amitabha made 48 universal vows, in his 18th vow refers to chanting ten times will certainly have born to his realm. It means if one chants his name 10 times truthfully, one can go and be born to the Bliss World of Amitabha Pure Land.

Returning to the topic, if we apply Prajna (wisdom) to look at chanting ten times will certainly have born to his realm. How to look at it? It is very simple: when your mind has been purified of defiling illusion up to having ten purified thoughts entirely; through the great vow’s energy of Amitabha, you will see that type of energy of your original living which is purified without defilement.

Therefore, there is a very important issue, this precisely is not superstition; it is after your mind has been purified of defiling illusion and you truly see it. Just like many people who practice Samadhi cultivation (the highest level of the unmoved mind and undisturbed) and can see that the six realms of reincarnation truly exist, Heavens and Hells truly exist, but they would not tell people about it.

Why? Other people would not believe it.

Then who explains the Buddha speaks Amitabha Sutra, the Infinite Life Sutra? It was explained by Shakyamuni Buddha.

Therefore, in this kind of sphere, you can only rely on yourself to implement.

How to implement? Chanting Amitabha.

Why do I promote chanting Amitabha? Because it is convenient, you can put effort at any time and any place, and it unlikely to be cut off.

What effort? The effort of reminding your head to maintain clarity which will not be cut off. This is the same as the way of Dhyana (Zen), but it’s meditative way relies on the self-strength.

If you chant Amitabha for 24 hours without a delusional thought, then you are into the “stillness of mind control”. But your delusional thought has not ended, this state is “united with Amitabha in your mind”.  To progress to the next level, end your delusional thought, and then you will enter the state of “chanting wholeheartedly without scattering”.

What is the state of “chanting wholeheartedly without scattering”? You have verified into the state of Arhat, as selflessness, and put an end to all illusions and temptations from things seen and thought.

The next level is called “wholeheartedly concentrating the mind without scattering, being absolutely apart from phenomena and obtaining the underlying truth of all things within Buddha-nature”. It is like what I have just mentioned, where thoughts after thoughts are without delusional thought, and you are also chanting Amitabha but completely without attachment.

What does this mean? It means you do not have attachment; you have eradicated the “unenlightened condition” which is equivalent to the sphere of the Sixth Patriarch of Dhyana (Zen) Buddhism.

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

 

我剛剛講的「念佛」意思是什麼?

你看那個「念」字,今天的「今」下面一個「心」,現在、此時此刻。

這個是什麼狀態?當下。就是在這一剎那你的心不迷。

為什麼說念佛?就是當下你的心是清清楚楚、明明白白。

這個「佛」代表清清楚楚、明明白白。各位千萬不要會錯意,不是說單純一句「阿彌陀佛」,不是的;他原來的意思就是要你分分秒秒都不迷,這叫念佛。後來,因為眾生的根機越來越差。

什麼叫「根機」?就是他的實行力跟理解力。

所以念佛又分三種:最簡單、最普通的叫「持名念佛」。

那什麼叫持名一句佛號「阿彌陀佛」?念這一尊佛的名號。

這個由來從【無量壽經】、【阿彌陀經】來的。這是阿彌陀佛發四十八大願,這個第十八願裡面講:「十念必生」。

這是什麼意思?念十句名號就能往生他的極樂世界。

那我們話說回來,如果用「般若」來看這句話,怎麼看?很簡單,就是你的心清淨到十個念頭都清淨,你就因為阿彌陀佛大的願力磁場,而見到你原來清淨而沒育污染的生活的那種能量。

所以這裡有個很重要的問題,就是它不是迷信;它是你心清淨以後,你真的見得到。就等於很多修「禪定」的人,看到真的有六道輪迴,真的有天堂、地獄。他自己很清楚但是他不說。

為什麼?別人不相信。

那【無量壽經】、【阿彌陀經】誰講的?釋迦牟尼佛說的。

所以這種境界的狀態,只有自己實行。怎麼實行?念佛。

為什麼我提倡念佛?因為它方便,隨時隨地可以做功夫,不會斷。

什麼功夫?提醒自己腦袋清楚的功夫,不會斷掉。

「禪」也是一樣,但「禪」是靠自己的力量。

你如果二十四小時沒有一個妄念這叫「入定」了。但這個妄念沒有斷叫「成片」。再進一步,你的妄念斷了,你就進入「事一心不亂」。

什麼叫「事一心」?證阿難漢果,無我,見思煩惱斷掉。

你再進入叫「理一心」,像我剛剛講的念念完全沒有妄念,也念阿彌陀佛,但念而無念。

什麼意思?他根本沒有執著,破了「無明」了,就等於六祖的境界。

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

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