Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Prajnaparamita-18K - Chapter 31 - Worshiping without Worshiping - 331

.

The Transcendent Perfection of Wisdom
in Eighteen Thousand Lines - 331
Daśa­sāhasrikā­prajñā­pāramitā

– Chapter 31 - Worshiping without Worshiping –

Source: https://read.84000.co/translation/toh10.html

More Analysis of Mahayana Sutras : https://www.gilehtblog.com/2022/07/toc-400.html

[Note: The two truths are:
T1: conventionally dependently co-arisen (interdependent) relatively functional ever-changing impermanent appearances / tools / adapted skillful means, merely labeled / imputed / imagined / created by the mind in dependence of its conditioning / karma (in cycle), not completely non-existence;
T2: emptiness of inherent existence, not real existence;
U2T: those two truths, like any other pair of apparent opposites, are inseparable, interdependent, co-defined, co-relative, co-dependent, co-emergent, co-evolving, co-ceasing / co-transcended, in harmony, in 'Union' <==> thus empty of inherent existence.
They are tools to help us to get to the 'inconceivable' by refuting what 'Reality as it is' is not:
all extreme views like: existence / dharma / causality / functionality, non-existence / non-dharma / non-causality / non-functionality, both together, neither; difference / manyness / diversity / duality, identity / oneness / sameness / non-duality, both together, neither; permanence / continuity / eternity, impermanence / discontinuity / annihilation, both together, neither; individuality, collectivity, universality, a combination of those, none of those; subjectivity, relation / action / process, objectivity, a combination of those, none of those; the 1st truth alone / dependent origination [T1], the 2nd truth alone / mere-emptiness [T2], both two truths together as if different and in opposition [2T], neither of the two truths as if identical and one [1T,]; ‘this’, ‘non-this’, both together, neither – for whatever ‘this’ is.
-
The three spheres: ex.
i. The subject / actor / goer / perceiver / knower / acquirer / owner,
ii. The relation / action / going / perceiving / knowing / acquiring / having
iii. The object / result / destination / perceived / known / acquired / possessions / karma / 5 aggregates / body & speech & mind.
-
Generalisations:
Whenever it is possible the comments of each section are expressed into a more global context. So they always cover more than just what is said in the various translations. The goal is to make the Big Picture more evident.
-
Note: All comments within (i.e. …) or [...] are from the commentator (me), not the translators.)


[Back to Résumés of chapters 1-41]

31. PHYSICAL REMAINS – Worshiping without Worshiping: I would want the perfection of wisdom over anything else, but without establishing anything.

(i.e. Résumé: Worshiping without worshiping, without any attachment / fixation / absolutes.
-
I would choose the perfection of wisdom over anything else, but without establishing anything.
-
"I respect, revere, honor, and worship those physical remains of the tathāgatas
because they come about from the perfection of wisdom.
The physical remains of the tathāgatas are suffused by the perfection of wisdom.
That is why the physical remains of the tathāgatas get to be worshiped."
"Furthermore, those physical remains were the receptacle of the knowledge of a knower of all aspects,
the elimination of all residual impressions, connections, and afflictions,
a constant staying in a state of equanimity, and the natural state not robbed of mindfulness.
That is why they get to be worshiped."
"Those physical remains of a tathāgata were the receptacle of perfections that are the true nature of dharmas.
Those physical remains of the Tathāgata are suffused with the true nature of dharmas.
That is why those physical remains of a tathāgata get to be worshiped."
"But still, it is on account of revering the perfection of wisdom that one reveres,
that one respects, that one honors, and that one worships the physical remains of the tathāgatas."
-
Everybody should respect, should revere, should honor, and should worship this perfection of wisdom
with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners;
they should take it up, bear it in mind, read it aloud, and master it.
Because everything good comes from it.
-
"A son of a good family or daughter of a good family who has written out this perfection of wisdom and bestowed it on others creates even more merit than that son of a good family or daughter of a good family who respects, reveres, honors, and worships it with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, robes, parasols, flags, and banners.
"Furthermore, a son of a good family or daughter of a good family who goes to others and explicates, teaches, explains, gives a commentary on, and makes clear this perfection of wisdom creates even more merit than that earlier one."
-
Still, the perfection of wisdom cannot be apprehended, cannot be pointed out,
does not obstruct, and has only one mark‍ — that is, no mark‍ — so it cannot be take it up.
Why? Because all dharmas are empty of inherent existence [T1] <==> because dependently co-arisen / interdependent [T2], merely labeled / imputed by the mind [U3S]; like illusions, reflections, mirages, dreams, echos, magical tricks: 'There, but not there.' [U2T].
-
Buddha: "It is just this perfection of wisdom.
It is just this perfection of wisdom that I myself,
also respect, revere, honor, and worship,
that I have respected, revered, honored, and worshiped,
and that I rely on and stay by.")

Then the Lord asked Śatakratu, head of the gods,

  • "Kauśika, which of these two options would you choose:
    a) to have this Jambudvīpa filled right to the top with the physical remains of tathāgatas and to respect, revere, honor, and worship them with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, robes, parasols, flags, and banners,
    b) or to be given this perfection of wisdom?"

"Lord," replied Śatakratu,

  • a) "were I to be offered this Jambudvīpa filled right to the top with the physical remains of the tathāgatas
    b) and to be offered this perfection of wisdom written out in book form
    — were I to be presented with these two options‍ —
    _____________________________________
    I would want the perfection of wisdom.
    _____________________________________
    -
    And why?
    Lord, it is not that I do not venerate those physical remains of the tathāgatas.
    Lord, I do indeed venerate them.
    It is not that I do not respect those physical remains of the tathāgatas,
    or do not revere, do not honor, and do not worship them.
    -
    ______________________________________________________________________________
    But I respect, revere, honor, and worship those physical remains of the tathāgatas
    because they come about from the perfection of wisdom.________________________
    The physical remains of the tathāgatas are suffused by the perfection of wisdom._
    That is why the physical remains of the tathāgatas get to be worshiped."_________
    ______________________________________________________________________________

Then venerable Śāriputra said to Śatakratu, head of the gods,

  • "Kauśika,
    -
    _____________________________________________________________
    the perfection of wisdom cannot be apprehended, cannot be pointed out,
    does not obstruct, and has only one mark‍ — that is, no mark‍ —_______
    so how could you think to take it up?______________________________
    _____________________________________________________________
    -
    Why can it not be taken up?
    It is because this perfection of wisdom is not a place to be seized or not seized, to be increased or reduced, to be taken away from or added to, for defilement or purification.
    It does not bestow the buddha dharmas;
    it does not remove the dharmas of ordinary persons.
    It does not bestow the dharmas of bodhisattvas, the dharmas of pratyekabuddhas, the dharmas of śrāvakas, the dharmas of those in training, or the dharmas of those for whom there is no more training.
    It does not remove the dharmas of ordinary persons.
    It does not bestow the uncompounded element, and it does not remove the compounded element.
    It does not bestow inner emptiness, up to or the emptiness that is the nonexistence of an intrinsic nature;
    it does not bestow the applications of mindfulness, the right efforts, the legs of miraculous power, the faculties, the powers, the limbs of awakening, the path, or the eighteen distinct attributes of a buddha.
    It does not bestow the knowledge of all aspects."

"Venerable monk Śāriputra, exactly!" said Śatakratu.

  • "I too understand that the perfection of wisdom does not bestow the buddha dharmas, up to the knowledge of all aspects.
    Why?
    Because the perfection of wisdom is not two, because a dual perfection of wisdom is not available.

  • Similarly, a dual perfection of concentration, perfection of perseverance, perfection of patience, perfection of morality, and perfection of giving is not available, because it is not two."

Then the Lord complimented Śatakratu, head of the gods.

  • "Kauśika, exactly so! Excellent, excellent, Kauśika, it is exactly as you say!
    A dual perfection of wisdom is not available because the perfection of wisdom is not two.
    Similarly, a dual perfection of concentration . . . , perfection of perseverance . . . , perfection of patience . . . , perfection of morality . . . , and perfection of giving is not available, because it is not two.

  • Kauśika, to accept the perfection of wisdom as two is simply to accept the dharma-constituent as two.
    And why?
    Kauśika, the perfection of wisdom and the dharma-constituent are not two, nor are they divided.

  • Similarly, the perfection of concentration, perfection of perseverance, perfection of patience, perfection of morality, and perfection of giving and the dharma-constituent are not two, nor are they divided.
    Connect this in the same way with each, up to to accept the perfection of wisdom as two is simply to accept suchness as two, up to . . . is simply to accept the very limit of reality and the inconceivable element as two."

Śatakratu then said,

  • "Lord, this perfection of wisdom in which bodhisattva great beings train to fully awaken to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening is the place to which the world with its gods, humans, and asuras rightly bows down.

  • "Lord, at the times when I am present on the throne of the head of the gods in the Sudharmā assembly of gods, the gods come to attend on me there in my place. When I am not present on my lion throne they think, 'Seated on this Dharma throne, Śatakratu, head of the gods, teaches Dharma to the Trāyastriṃśa gods,' and they bow down to that throne of mine and go back. Similarly, Lord, the gods, nāgas, yakṣas, gandharvas, asuras, garuḍas, kinnaras, and mahoragas come from the ten directions with the thought to go and bow down to where this perfection of wisdom is kept written out, or is read aloud, or is perfectly revealed to others and, having bowed down to this perfection of wisdom, to go back.
    And why?
    It is because the tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas have come about from this perfection of wisdom, all the requirements for the happiness of all beings have arisen from it,
    and because whatever physical remains of the tathāgatas there are, they too have come about from this perfection of wisdom.
    Even when a tathāgata is pursuing the practice of awakening, this perfection of wisdom serves as the foundation, serves as the condition, serves as the cause, and serves as the force for the knowledge of all aspects.

  • "Lord, because that is the case, of those two options
    _____________________________________
    I would want the perfection of wisdom.
    _____________________________________
    Having taken the perfection of wisdom, I would recite it with a mind that longs for the good Dharma.

  • "Lord, when I pay attention to the perfection of wisdom, I see no reason to fear or be petrified. And why? Lord, it is because the perfection of wisdom has no causal sign; the perfection of wisdom, Lord, has no token, is inexpressible, and cannot be given voice to.

  • "Similarly, Lord, the perfection of concentration, the perfection of perseverance, the perfection of patience, the perfection of morality, and the perfection of giving, up to the knowledge of all aspects cannot be given voice to.

  • "Lord, were the perfection of wisdom to have a causal sign, were it not to have no causal sign, the tathāgata, worthy one, perfectly complete buddha, having understood that all dharmas have no causal sign, have no token, are inexpressible, and cannot be talked about, would not have fully awakened to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening and taught beings that dharmas have no causal sign, have no token, are inexpressible, and cannot be talked about. Lord, it is because the perfection of wisdom has no causal sign, has no token, is inexpressible, and cannot be talked about that the tathāgata, having understood that all dharmas have no causal sign, have no token, are inexpressible, cannot be talked about, and are inconceivable, did fully awaken to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening and does teach beings that dharmas have no causal sign, have no token, are inexpressible, cannot be given voice to, are inconceivable, and are not amenable to language.

  • "Therefore, Lord, the world with its gods, humans, and asuras should respect, should revere, should honor, and should worship this perfection of wisdom with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners; they should take it up, bear it in mind, read it aloud, and master it.
    It is correct that life in the hells, the animal world, and the world of Yama will then be no more, and they will not descend to the śrāvaka level or the pratyekabuddha level.
    It is correct that up until fully awakening to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening, they will see the tathāgata, bring beings to maturity, and, passing on from buddhafield to buddhafield, respect, revere, honor, and worship this perfection of wisdom with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners.

  • a) "Furthermore, Lord, were I to be offered this great billionfold world system filled right to the top with the physical remains of tathāgatas,
    b) and were I to be offered this perfection of wisdom written out in book form,
    presented with these two options
    _____________________________________
    I would want the perfection of wisdom.
    _____________________________________
    And why?
    _________________________________________________________________________________
    Those physical remains of the tathāgatas come about from the perfection of wisdom;
    that is why they are respected, revered, honored, and worshiped,___________________
    _________________________________________________________________________________
    and that is why those sons of a good family who have respected, revered, honored, and worshiped them are not born in terrible forms of life, experience everything perfect of the gods and humans, and in the Śrāvaka Vehicle, or the Pratyekabuddha Vehicle, or the Great Vehicle enter complete nirvāṇa in accordance with earlier prayers they have made.

  • "To see the Tathāgata and to see the perfection of wisdom is equivalent, because, Lord, the Tathāgata and the perfection of wisdom are not two and cannot be divided into two.

  • "Furthermore, Lord, for a tathāgata, worthy one, perfectly complete buddha to teach the discourses, melodious narrations, predictions, up to and expositions with the three sorts of miracles, and for a son of a good family or a daughter of a good family to take up this perfection of wisdom and, having mastered it, teach it to others is equivalent. And why? Lord, it is because a tathāgata, worthy one, perfectly complete buddha's teaching of the discourses, melodious narrations, predictions, up to and expositions with the three sorts of miracles comes about from it.

  • "Furthermore, Lord, for as many tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfect complete buddhas as there are sand particles in the Gaṅgā River in the east to teach the discourses, melodious narrations, predictions, up to and expositions with the three sorts of miracles, and similarly, for the lord buddhas in as many world systems as there are sand particles in the Gaṅgā River in the south, west, and north, below and above, and the intermediate directions to teach the discourses, melodious narrations, predictions, up to and expositions with the three sorts of miracles, and for a son of a good family or a daughter of a good family to take up this perfection of wisdom, up to master it, and teach it to others is equivalent. And why? Because tathāgatas come about from it, and because discourses, melodious narrations, predictions, up to and expositions with the three sorts of miracles come about from it too.

  • "Furthermore, Lord, to respect, revere, honor, and worship as many tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas as there are sand particles in the Gaṅgā River in each of the ten directions with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, robes, parasols, flags, and banners,
    and to respect, revere, honor, and worship this perfection of wisdom written out in book form with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, robes, parasols, flags, and banners
    is equivalent.
    And why?
    Because the tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas come about from it.

  • "Furthermore, Lord, for the son of a good family or daughter of a good family who has taken up this perfection of wisdom,] borne it in mind, read it aloud, mastered it, properly paid attention to it, and illuminated it for others, it is correct that life in the hells, the animal world, and the world of Yama will be no more, and it is correct that descent to the śrāvaka level or the pratyekabuddha level will not happen and that they will stand on the irreversible bodhisattva level.
    And why?
    Because for the son of a good family or daughter of a good family who has written out this perfection of wisdom and takes it up, bears it in mind, reads it aloud, masters it, and properly pays attention to it, as well as respects, reveres, honors, and worships it with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, robes, parasols, flags, and banners,
    it is right that there are no hazards anywhere.

  • "To illustrate, Lord, a person fearful of rich creditors seeks safety with the ruler, and in the retinue of the ruler is actually lobbied by those he fears. They do not scare him again.
    And why?
    Lord, having sought safety in the powerful, that happens.
    That is why, having sought safety in the ruler, he is not scared.
    Similarly, Lord, the physical remains of the tathāgatas get to be worshiped because they are suffused with the perfection of wisdom.
    Lord, there the perfection of wisdom should be viewed as being like a ruler;
    the physical relics of the tathāgatas that get to be worshiped because they are suffused by the perfection of wisdom should be viewed as being like the person who has sought safety with the ruler and gets to be feted.
    You should know that even the knowledge of all aspects is suffused by the perfection of wisdom.

  • "Because that is the case, of those two options
    _____________________________________
    I would want the perfection of wisdom.
    _____________________________________
    And why?
    Because the physical remains of the tathāgatas come about from it, the thirty-two major marks of a great person come about from it, the ten tathāgata powers come about from it, the four fearlessnesses, four detailed and thorough knowledges, and eighteen distinct attributes of a buddha come about from it, and great love and great compassion come about from it. Lord, all five perfections get the name perfection because they come about from it. The knowledge of all aspects of the tathāgatas comes about from it.

  • "Lord, a human or non-human looking for a way to cause trouble to beings in a great billionfold world system does not find a way to cause trouble to those beings who take up this perfection of wisdom, bear it in mind, read it aloud, and master it, so those beings gradually enter into complete nirvāṇa.

  • "Thus, Lord, this perfection of wisdom, like a jewel, serves a great purpose. The perfection of wisdom is made available for doing the work a buddha has to do for those beings standing in the great billionfold world system. 425 It is right, Lord, that a buddha comes into being in a world system where the perfection is being practiced.

  • "To give an illustration, Lord, there is a large, priceless jewel. That precious jewel is endowed with good qualities such as the following: Non-humans do not find an opportunity to cause trouble to any place the large precious jewel is placed, and if, when a man or woman is possessed by a non-human, the precious jewel is brought out, the moment the precious jewel is brought out the non-human is unable to bear the splendor of that large precious jewel and flees. If the precious jewel is attached to a body feverish with jaundice it clears up the bile disorder, the sickness does not increase, and it is cured; if the precious jewel is attached to a body wracked by chills and the flu it clears up the wind disorder; and if the precious jewel is attached to a body sick with a phlegm disorder, all the phlegm disorders are cured as well. When a son of a good family or daughter of a good family is wracked by a disorder of the three humors in combination, 426 if the precious jewel is attached to the body, that is cured as well. That precious jewel also illuminates the night. During the advent of the hot season, wherever the precious jewel is put it cools that place down; during the advent of the cold season, wherever the precious jewel is put it warms that place up; and wherever the precious jewel is put that place is cool but not cold, warm but not hot, and seasonably pleasant. In whatever place the precious jewel is kept no poisonous snakes and scorpions or other poisonous crawling creatures remain in that place. When the precious jewel is shown to a son of a good family or daughter of a good family bitten by a poisonous snake, the moment it is shown to them the poison totally disappears. That precious jewel is endowed with good qualities such as those and so on.

  • "Lord, if the precious jewel is attached to the bodies of those men or women who are wracked by various sicknesses, all their sicknesses are cured. Lord, all water into which the precious jewel is introduced takes on its natural color and becomes endowed with the eight good qualities. Lord, if the precious jewel is wrapped in a blue cloth and introduced into water it turns the water blue. If the precious jewel, in other instances, is wrapped in a yellow, or red, or reddish brown, or crystal-colored cloth and introduced into water it turns the water those colors. If the precious jewel is wrapped in a cloth of a mixture of colors and introduced into water, it turns the water that mixture of colors. Lord, if the precious jewel is introduced into dirty water it makes it clean. That precious jewel is endowed with good qualities such as those, and so on."

Then venerable Ānanda asked Śatakratu, head of the gods,

  • "Kauśika, what do you think?
    Is this a precious jewel of the gods, or do the humans of Jambudvīpa have something so precious as this as well?"

"Elder Ānanda," replied Śatakratu,

  • "this is a precious jewel of the gods. The precious jewels of the humans of Jambudvīpa are stunted and heavy; the precious jewels of the gods are big and light. Unlike the precious jewels of the gods, the precious jewels of the humans of Jambudvīpa are not replete with good qualities, so those precious jewels of the humans of Jambudvīpa do not compare with a millionth part 427 of a jewel of the gods; they do not stand up to any fraction, or counting, or example."

Then Śatakratu, head of the gods, said to the Lord,

  • "Lord, if you introduce this precious jewel into a basket, even when you have taken this precious jewel out of the basket, the basket still retains an attraction because of thinking 'it was there, in there.' Similarly, Lord, the physical and mental suffering and harm perpetrated by humans or non-humans on sons of a good family or daughters of a good family do not occur in any place where this perfection of wisdom is practiced.

  • "There precious jewel is an expression for the perfection of wisdom and knowledge of all aspects. The good qualities of the perfection of wisdom are infinite, so is it possible to proclaim as many good qualities of the perfection of wisdom as there are?

  • "Similarly, these good qualities of the knowledge of all aspects‍ — the perfection of concentration, perfection of perseverance, perfection of patience, perfection of morality, and perfection of giving; inner emptiness, up to the emptiness that is the nonexistence of an intrinsic nature; the applications of mindfulness, right efforts, legs of miraculous power, faculties, powers, limbs of awakening, and path; up to the eighteen distinct attributes of a buddha, the knowledge of a knower of all, the dharma-constituent, the certification of dharmas, suchness, the very limit of reality, and the inconceivable element‍ —
    are the good qualities on account of which the physical remains of a tathāgata who has entered complete nirvāṇa get to be worshiped.

  • "Furthermore, Lord, those physical remains were the receptacle of the knowledge of a knower of all aspects, the elimination of all residual impressions, connections, and afflictions, a constant staying in a state of equanimity, and the natural state not robbed of mindfulness. That is why they get to be worshiped.

  • "Furthermore, Lord, those physical remains were the receptacle of the jewel-like perfections.
    Those physical remains of a tathāgata were the receptacle of perfections that are not defiled and are not purified, perfections that are not produced and do not stop, perfections that are not appropriated and are not forsaken, and perfections that do not come and do not go.
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________
    Those physical remains of a tathāgata were the receptacle of perfections that are the true nature of dharmas.
    Those physical remains of the Tathāgata are suffused with the true nature of dharmas. ___________________
    That is why those physical remains of a tathāgata get to be worshiped._________________________________
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________

  • "Furthermore, Lord, let alone this great billionfold world system filled right to the top with the physical remains of tathāgatas, Lord, even were I to be offered as many great billionfold world systems as there are sand particles in the Gaṅgā River filled right to the top with the physical remains of tathāgatas,
    b) and this perfection of wisdom written out in book form‍ —
    Lord, presented with these two options
    _____________________________________
    I would want the perfection of wisdom.
    _____________________________________
    And why?
    ____________________________________________________________________
    The physical remains of the tathāgatas are suffused by the perfection of wisdom.
    It is because they come about from it that they get to be worshiped.___________
    ____________________________________________________________________

  • "Lord, when the wholesome roots of a son of a good family or daughter of a good family
    who has respected, revered, honored, and worshiped the physical remains of the tathāgatas have grown to their limit,
    they experience the happinesses of gods and humans, they experience the happinesses of great sāla tree–like royal families, great sāla tree–like brahmin families, and great sāla tree–like business families, and of the Cāturmahā­rājika gods and the Trāyastriṃśa, Yāma, Tuṣita, Nirmāṇarati, and Para­nirmita­vaśa­vartin gods. The wholesome roots bring the suffering of just those to an end. A son of a good family or daughter of a good family who has respected, revered, honored, and worshiped the perfection of wisdom, on the other hand, completes the perfection of concentration and thereby completes the perfection of perseverance; completes the perfection of perseverance and thereby completes the perfection of patience; completes the perfection of patience and thereby completes the perfection of morality; and completes the perfection of morality and thereby completes the perfection of giving. Similarly, they complete the thirty-seven dharmas on the side of awakening, up to practicing the eighteen distinct attributes of a buddha, and they pass beyond the śrāvaka and pratyekabuddha level and enter into the secure state of a bodhisattva. Having entered into the secure state of a bodhisattva they gain the clairvoyances of a bodhisattva, pass on from buddhafield to buddhafield, assuming bodies at will, whatever bodies will bring beings to maturity. Alternatively, they assume the body of a wheel-turning emperor, or of those in great sāla tree–like royal families, great sāla tree–like brahmin families, and great sāla tree–like business families, and bring beings to maturity.

  • "Lord, because that is the case, it is not that I do not respect the physical remains of the tathāgatas,
    and it is not that I do not seek to obtain them.
    ____________________________________________________
    But still, it is on account of revering the perfection of wisdom
    that I revere, that I respect, that I honor,_________________
    and that I worship the physical remains of the tathāgatas.__
    ___________________________________________________

  • "Furthermore, Lord, those who want to see tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas standing in infinite countless world systems in the ten directions as the dharma body and as the form body 428 should take up this perfection of wisdom, bear it in mind, read it aloud, master it, illuminate it in detail for others, and properly pay attention to it.

  • "A son of a good family or daughter of a good family who wants to see the tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas of the ten directions, that son of a good family or daughter of a good family, practicing the perfection of wisdom, should cultivate mindfulness of the buddhas in accordance with what the dharmas actually are. 429 As for what the dharmas actually are, Lord, they are two. What are the two? What the dharmas actually are when the dharmas are compounded and what the dharmas actually are when the dharmas are uncompounded.

  • "Lord, what are the actual dharmas when the dharmas are compounded? They are the knowledge of inner emptiness, up to the knowledge of emptiness that is the nonexistence of an intrinsic nature, knowledge of the thirty-seven dharmas on the side of awakening, knowledge of the ten tathāgata powers, knowledge of the four fearlessnesses, knowledge of the four detailed and thorough knowledges, knowledge of the eighteen distinct attributes of a buddha, knowledge of wholesome and unwholesome dharmas, knowledge of dharmas with outflows and without outflows, knowledge of basic immorality and what is not basic immorality, knowledge of the ordinary and extraordinary, and knowledge of defilement and purification dharmas. These are said to be what the dharmas actually are when the dharmas are compounded.

  • "What are the actual dharmas when the dharmas are uncompounded? They are the nonexistence of production, the nonexistence of stopping, the nonexistence of lasting, the nonexistence of lasting and changing into something else, the nonexistence of defilement, the nonexistence of purification, the nonexistence of decrease, and the nonexistence of increase in any dharma, up to the nonexistence of an intrinsic nature of all dharmas. And what is the nonexistence of an intrinsic nature of all dharmas? All dharmas are the nonexistence of an intrinsic nature, so this is said to be what the dharmas actually are when the dharmas are uncompounded."

Then the Lord said to Śatakratu, head of the gods,

  • "Exactly so, Kauśika, exactly so! The tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas who appeared in times past fully awakened to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening thanks to just this perfection of wisdom; the tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas who will appear in future times will fully awaken to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening thanks to just this perfection of wisdom; and the present tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas presently dwelling and maintaining themselves in infinite, countless world systems in the ten directions fully awaken to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening thanks to just this perfection of wisdom.

  • "Those who were the śrāvakas of past tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas, those who will be the śrāvakas of future tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas, and those who are standing at the present time as the śrāvakas of present tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas reached, will reach, and are reaching the result of stream enterer, the result of once-returner, the result of non-returner, and the result of worthy one thanks to just this perfection of wisdom.

  • "Those who were pratyekabuddhas in times past, those who will be pratyekabuddhas in future times, and those presently dwelling and maintaining themselves in infinite, countless world systems in the ten directions reached, will reach, and are reaching their own awakening thanks to just this perfection of wisdom.

  • "And why? It is because this perfection of wisdom gives detailed instruction for the three vehicles and instruction by way of no causal sign, by way of no production, by way of no stopping, by way of no defilement, by way of no purification, by way of no enactment, by way of no appropriating, by way of no forsaking, by way of not taking anything away, by way of not adding anything, by way of no grasping, and by way of no rejecting.

  • "Furthermore, it does it as ordinary convention, not ultimately. And why? Because the perfection of wisdom is not perfect and not imperfect. It is not over there or over here, nor has it stayed up or sunk down, nor is it the same or sometimes different, with a causal sign or without a causal sign, ordinary or extraordinary, compounded or uncompounded, wholesome or unwholesome, or past, future, or present.

  • "Kauśika, the perfection of wisdom does not bestow any dharma. It does not bestow pratyekabuddha dharmas, worthy one dharmas, or the dharmas of ordinary persons."

"Lord," replied Śatakratu,

  • "this‍ — that is, the perfection of wisdom‍ — is a great perfection. Lord, bodhisattva great beings practicing the perfection of wisdom are aware of the thought activities of all beings, but they do not apprehend a being, up to they do not apprehend one who knows and one who sees. They also do not apprehend form, and they do not apprehend feeling, perception, volitional factors, or consciousness; they do not apprehend the eyes, they do not apprehend a form, they do not apprehend eye consciousness, they do not apprehend eye contact, and they do not apprehend any pleasurable, or suffering, or neither pleasurable nor suffering feeling that arises from the condition of contact with the eyes. Similarly, they do not apprehend the ears . . . the nose . . . the tongue . . . the body . . . or the thinking mind, they do not apprehend thinking-mind consciousness, they do not apprehend thinking-mind contact, and they do not apprehend any pleasurable feeling or suffering feeling, or neither pleasurable nor suffering feeling that arises from the condition of contact with the thinking mind. They do not apprehend the applications of mindfulness; they do not apprehend the right efforts, legs of miraculous power, faculties, powers, limbs of awakening, or path; and they do not apprehend the four fearlessnesses, four detailed and thorough knowledges, or eighteen distinct attributes of a buddha. They do not apprehend bodhi, buddha, or buddha-dharmas.

  • "And why? Because the perfection of wisdom is not made available in a way that anything can be apprehended. And why? Because what apprehends and what is apprehended have no intrinsic nature."

  • "Exactly so, Kauśika, exactly so!" said the Lord. "Kauśika, given that bodhisattva great beings thus practicing the perfection of wisdom by way of not apprehending anything do not apprehend even awakening, what need is there to mention that they do not apprehend a bodhisattva, and they do not apprehend the dharmas of bodhisattvas."

Śatakratu then asked,

  • "Lord, why is it that bodhisattva great beings practice only the perfection of wisdom and do not practice the other perfections?"

"Kauśika," replied the Lord,

  • "bodhisattvas do not practice only the perfection of wisdom; they practice all the perfections, and practice, moreover, by way of not apprehending anything. They do not apprehend a gift, do not apprehend a giver, and do not apprehend a recipient; they do not apprehend morality, do not apprehend being moral, and do not apprehend immorality; they do not apprehend patience, do not apprehend an object of patience, and do not apprehend having patience; they do not apprehend perseverance, do not apprehend something that has to be done, and do not apprehend body and mind; they do not apprehend thought, do not apprehend meditative stabilization, and do not apprehend absorption; and they do not apprehend wisdom, do not apprehend an object of wisdom, and do not apprehend being wise.

  • "Kauśika, bodhisattva great beings giving gifts are led by the perfection of wisdom by way of not apprehending all dharmas. The protection of morality, cultivation of patience, exertion at perseverance, and absorption in concentration are preceded by the perfection of wisdom. The investigation of the dharmas of bodhisattvas is preceded by the perfection of wisdom. Connect this in the same way with the investigation of the aggregates, constituents, and sense fields is preceded by the perfection of wisdom by way of not apprehending all dharmas. Connect this with the thirty-seven dharmas on the side of awakening by way of not apprehending all dharmas. Connect this with the powers, fearlessnesses, detailed and thorough knowledges, and eighteen distinct attributes of a buddha by way of not apprehending all dharmas. Connect this with the rest, up to the knowledge of all aspects by way of not apprehending all dharmas.

  • "Kauśika, the trees in Jambudvīpa have different leaves and bear different fruit, but when it comes to the shadows of those trees, as many as there are, apart from again and again counting it a 'shadow,' there is no distinction or differentiation. Similarly, Kauśika, there is no distinction or differentiation among the five perfections informed by the perfection of wisdom and dedicated to the knowledge of all aspects by way of not apprehending anything."

Śatakratu then said,

  • "Lord, this perfection of wisdom is endowed with great compassion; this perfection of wisdom brings all good qualities to completion, is endowed with infinite good qualities, is endowed with boundless good qualities, and is endowed with unlimited good qualities.

  • "Lord, if a son of a good family or daughter of a good family who has written out this perfection of wisdom and bears it in mind and respects, reveres, honors, and worships it with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, robes, parasols, flags, and banners properly pays attention to it as it has been expounded,
    and if a son of a good family or daughter of a good family who has written out this perfection of wisdom bestows it on others,
    which of the two creates more merit?"

The Lord replied,

  • "So, Kauśika, here I will pose a counter-question right to you.
    You should answer to the extent you can.
    Who do you think, Kauśika, creates more merit‍ —
    a son of a good family or daughter of a good family who respects, reveres, honors, and worships the physical remains of the Tathāgata with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners,
    or another son of a good family or daughter of a good family who shares them and bestows just a sesame seed measure of the physical remains of the Tathāgata on others, so that a son of a good family or daughter of a good family then respects, reveres, honors, and worships those physical remains of the Tathāgata just a sesame seed in size with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners?"

"The way I understand the meaning of what you, Lord, have said," answered Śatakratu,

  • "is that the son of a good family or daughter of a good family who bestows them on others creates even more merit than those who just personally respect, revere, honor, and worship the physical remains of the Tathāgata with flowers and so on.
    The Tathāgata, seeing the force of that reality, feeling great compassion for those who, among the mass of beings, can be trained by the physical remains of a tathāgata, becomes absorbed in vajra-like meditative equipoise, shatters the vajra-like body, and imbues the physical remains of the Tathāgata with a special power.
    Lord, the end of the wholesome root planted by those who worship even just a sesame seed measure of the physical remains of the Tathāgata when the Tathāgata has passed into complete nirvāṇa cannot be known until they all have passed into complete nirvāṇa."

"Exactly so, Kauśika, exactly so!" said the Lord.

  • "A son of a good family or daughter of a good family who has written out this perfection of wisdom and bestowed it on others creates even more merit than that son of a good family or daughter of a good family who respects, reveres, honors, and worships it with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, robes, parasols, flags, and banners.

  • "Furthermore, Kauśika, a son of a good family or daughter of a good family who goes to others and explicates, teaches, explains, gives a commentary on, and makes clear this perfection of wisdom creates even more merit than that earlier one‍ — so they are rightfully the teacher or the learned fellow spiritual practitioner occupying the position of guru.
    And why?
    Here the teacher is not one thing and the perfection of wisdom another.
    Just the perfection of wisdom is the teacher and just the teacher is the perfection of wisdom, so just the perfection of wisdom should be seen as the teacher.
    And why?
    It is because past, future, and present tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas have appeared because they have trained in this perfection of wisdom, and any learned fellow spiritual practitioners, or bodhisattvas standing in the irreversible state, have fully awakened to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening because they have trained in just this perfection of wisdom.
    Having trained in just this perfection of wisdom, those in the Śrāvaka Vehicle have reached the state of a worthy one, those in the Pratyekabuddha Vehicle have reached their own awakening, and bodhisattvas have entered into, enter into, and will enter into the secure state of a bodhisattva.
    Therefore, Kauśika, a son of a good family or daughter of a good family who wants to directly witness tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas and wants to respect, revere, honor, and worship them with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners should write out just this perfection of wisdom in book form and respect, revere, honor, and worship it with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners.

  • "When I fully awakened to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening and, seeing the force of this reality, thought, 'What should I rely on and stay by, whom should I respect, revere, honor, and worship?' Kauśika, I then saw among the creatures in this world with its celestial beings, Māras, śramaṇas, and brahmins none comparable to myself, and having considered the fact that there are none comparable to myself I again thought, 'Well then, since this is the case, I should respect, revere, honor, and worship the Dharma to which 430 I fully awakened, and I should rely on and stay by just that Dharma.'
    And what is that Dharma, Kauśika?
    ______________________________________________________
    It is just this perfection of wisdom._____________________
    It is just this perfection of wisdom that I myself, Kauśika,
    also respect, revere, honor, and worship,_______________
    that I have respected, revered, honored, and worshiped,_
    and that I rely on and stay by.__________________________
    ______________________________________________________

  • "So, Kauśika, a son of a good family or daughter of a good family who wants to fully awaken to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening also should respect this perfection of wisdom; should revere, should honor, and should worship it with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners; and should rely on it and stay by it,
    not to mention that those sons of a good family or daughters of a good family who have entered into the Śrāvaka Vehicle or who have entered into the Pratyekabuddha Vehicle should respect this perfection of wisdom; should revere, should honor, and should worship it with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners; and should rely on it and stay by it too.
    And why?
    Because bodhisattvas have come about from the perfection of wisdom;
    tathāgatas, worthy ones, perfectly complete buddhas have come about from bodhisattvas;
    and śrāvakas and pratyekabuddhas have come about from tathāgatas.

  • Therefore, Kauśika, sons of a good family or daughters of a good family in the Great Vehicle, in the Śrāvaka Vehicle, and in the Pratyekabuddha Vehicle should respect this perfection of wisdom that sons of a good family or daughters of a good family who have fully awakened, will fully awaken, and are awakening to unsurpassed, perfect, complete awakening have trained in, and they should revere, should honor, and should worship it with flowers, perfumes, incense, garlands, creams, powders, clothes, parasols, flags, and banners."

This was the thirty-first chapter, "Physical Remains," of "The Perfection of Wisdom in Eighteen Thousand Lines."




Access to other chapters on the Blog:
(Work in progress. Empty files means they are not done yet.)

  1. Chapter 0 – Introduction to the Sutra

  2. Chapter 1 – Introduction / the Assembly

  3. Chapter 2 – Production of the Thought

  4. Chapter 3 – designation [U2T]

  5. Chapter 4 – Equal to the Unequal

  6. Chapter 5 – Tongue

  7. Chapter 6 – Subhūti

  8. Chapter 7 – Entry into flawlessness

  9. Chapter 8 – The Religious Mendicant Śreṇika

  10. Chapter 9 – Causal Signs

  11. Chapter 10 – Illusion-like

  12. Chapter 11 – Embarrassment

  13. Chapter 12 – Elimination of Views

  14. Chapter 13 – The Six Perfections

  15. Chapter 14 – Neither Bound nor Freed

  16. Chapter 15 – Meditative Stabilization

  17. Chapter 16 – Dhāraṇī Gateway

  18. Chapter 17 – Level Purification

  19. Chapter 18 – The Exposition of Going Forth in the Great Vehicle [cause / path]

  20. Chapter 19 – Surpassing

  21. Chapter 20 – Not Two

  22. Chapter 21 – Subhūti

  23. Chapter 22 – Śatakratu

  24. Chapter 23 – Hard to Understand

  25. Chapter 24 – Unlimited

  26. Chapter 25 – Second Śatakratu

  27. Chapter 26 – Getting Old

  28. Chapter 27 – Reliquary

  29. Chapter 28 – Declaration of the Good Qualities of the Thought of Awakening

  30. Chapter 29 – Different Tīrthika Religious Mendicants

  31. Chapter 30 – The Benefits of Taking Up and Adoration

  32. Chapter 31 – Physical Remains

  33. Chapter 32 – The Superiority of Merit

  34. Chapter 33 – Dedication

  35. Chapter 34 – Perfect Praise of the Quality of Accomplishment

  36. Chapter 35 – Hells

  37. Chapter 36 – Teaching The Purity of all Dharmas

  38. Chapter 37 – Nobody

  39. Chapter 38 – Cannot Be Apprehended

  40. Chapter 39 – The Northern Region

  41. Chapter 40 – The Work of Māra

  42. Chapter 41 – Not Complete Because of Māra

  43. Chapter 42 – Revealing the World

  44. Chapter 43 – Inconceivable

  45. Chapter 44 – Made Up

  46. Chapter 45 – A Boat

  47. Chapter 46 – Teaching the Intrinsic Nature of All Dharmas

  48. Chapter 47 – Taming Greed

  49. Chapter 48 – A Presentation of the Bodhisattvas' Training

  50. Chapter 49 – Irreversibility

  51. Chapter 50 – Teaching the Signs of Irreversibility

  52. Chapter 51 – Skillful means

  53. Chapter 52 – Completion of the Means

  54. Chapter 53 – The Prophecy about Gaṅgadevī

  55. Chapter 54 – Teaching the Cultivation of Skillful Means

  56. Chapter 55 – Teaching the Stopping of Thought Construction [in absolute terms]

  57. Chapter 56 – Equal Training

  58. Chapter 57 – Practice

  59. Chapter 58 – Exposition of the Absence of Thought Construction [in absolute terms]

  60. Chapter 59 – Non-attachment

  61. Chapter 60 – Entrusting

  62. Chapter 61 – Inexhaustible

  63. Chapter 62 – Leaping Above Absorption

  64. Chapter 63 – Many Inquiries about the Two Dharmas

  65. Chapter 64 – Perfectly Displayed

  66. Chapter 65 – Worshiping, Serving, and Attending on Spiritual Friends as Skillful Means

  67. Chapter 66 – A Demonstration of Skillful Means

  68. Chapter 67 – Morality

  69. Chapter 68 – Growing and Flourishing

  70. Chapter 69 – An Explanation of Meditation on The Path

  71. Chapter 70 – An Explanation of Serial Action, Training, and Practice

  72. Chapter 71 – The True Nature of Dharmas That Cannot Be Apprehended

  73. Chapter 72 – Teaching the Absence of Marks

  74. Chapter 73 – Exposition of the Major Marks and Minor Signs and the Completion of Letters

  75. Chapter 74 – Exposition of the Sameness of Dharmas

  76. Chapter 75 – Exposition of Non-complication –

  77. Chapter 76 – The Armor for Bringing Beings to Maturity

  78. Chapter 77 – Teaching the Purification of a Buddhafield

  79. Chapter 78 – Teaching the Skillful Means for the Purification of a Buddhafield

  80. Chapter 79 – Teaching the Non Existence of an Intrinsic Nature

  81. Chapter 80 – Teaching that there is No Defilement or Purification

  82. Chapter 81 – Yogic Practice of the Ultimate

  83. Chapter 82 – The Unchanging True Nature of Dharmas

  84. Chapter 83 – Categorization of a Bodhisattva's Training

  85. Chapter 84 – Collection

  86. Chapter 85 – Sadāprarudita

  87. Chapter 86 – Dharmodgata

  88. Chapter 87 – Entrusting

  89. Résumés in bullet points of all chapters.




.

.
.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.