MASTER SHEN-LONG | Explanation of the Title: Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 110
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Explanation of the Title: Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 110

(Last week we ended with, “I want to add one more of my own: At 80, I foresee the time of my death, I will go and be born to Amitabha Pure Land. This way of living is much more interesting.”)


At 30, I have established my stand, refers to the whole life when you are starting to build your foundation for career and family.

At 40, I have no delusions, refers to not having any delusions. If after 40 years old, you still have trouble seeing clearly and are unable to be disillusioned, or there is something that is unclear, then it is over.

At 50, I knew the decrees of Heaven. What is the purpose at 50 years old? It is not to resign yourself to fate, do not get it wrong. Knowing the decrees of Heaven means that:

People live happily by the mandate of heaven and there is no need to have doubt.

Tao Yuan-Ming (陶淵明 Jin dynasty writer and poet) stated at the end of his article titled Homeward Bound. If a person does not understand one’s destiny truly, then there is trouble. Heaven stated here precisely means yourself. The heaven refers to ancient statement, and there are two kinds of meaning for heaven: one is the mandate of heaven; the other is cultivated from self-effort. As a matter of fact, both are from self-cultivation.

Speaking of heaven, it is only a kind of figurative expression. From self-cultivation, can one cultivate to attain spiritual peace in all, and have the realization of enlightenment to accept one’s fate; this is the “precepts”. If at 50 and you do not know how to attain spiritual peace, if you are still fooling around in the pile of afflictions, then you will certainly arrive at the three evil paths. I think, you will go directly to Hell. Why? To be tormented. You will surely arrive to Hell. To be at the animal world, there are very few. How about to the hungry ghost world? Since your commission of an offence is profoundly serious, therefore, you will still arrive to Hell. This is particularly important.

If you can be at 40, have no delusions, and not be confused within the phenomena of 40 years old; then at 50, you will know the decrees of Heaven. After another ten years, at 60, hearing various opinions are pleasing to the ear.  Pleasing to the ear refers to no pressure when listening to anything. Pleasing of hearing, hearing the good deeds is good, however saying Amitabha after hearing bad deeds.

Everyone here is the age of 50 to 60, do you behave this way? Regardless when talking or criticizing, do you hear various sayings as pleasing to the ear and your mind does not hold onto any residue?  This is “observing the precepts”. Confucius’ lecturing is all about “moral precepts”. The entire content of the Analects talks about “moral-precepts, stillness of the mind and wisdom”. All without impediments, and whatever others do by “praising, ridiculing, slandering and appraising”, you hold nothing in your mind and live every day peacefully.  So, then “A man seldom lives to be 70 years old since ancient times”.

To live to 70 years old, you are blessed with luck all along then it is following the wish of your heart without crossing over the established standard. When you wish for anything, you will get, and every way of living is fine, but you do not go beyond the established standard. The established standard is the “moral precepts”. You live life skillfully and easily, completely free of obstacle in all life phenomena, thoroughly in brightness and peacefulness; is this not the same as how the Buddha teaching states. The school of Confucianism, Buddhism and Daoism are all the same. Daoism talks about “inaction” which precisely is following the wish of one’s heart without crossing over the established standard.The whole world is one community”, I saw this slogan when I was young and could not understand this. Small children do understand and same with the adults.

Therefore, genuinely emphasizing “precepts” are “to follow the wishes of one’s heart without crossing over the established standard”. If “precepts” are only the established standard, but one cannot follow the wish of one’s heart, then are those precepts of no use? If one cannot obtain omnipotence and joy, then it is only religious dogma; then it is meaningless and becomes religion.

There are too many of this kind of religious phenomena presently. The Ten Commandments of Christianity and the Ten Commandments of Catholicism are not to regulate you. Among the Ten Commandments one can see the similarities with the “Ten Wholesomeness” of Buddhism, all are the phenomena of innate pure self-nature.

Just finished talking about “greed, aversion, ignorance, arrogance and suspicion”. We turn these phenomena around to become “moral-precepts, stillness of the mind, and wisdom”. In fact, during compliance with moral preceptsthat which exists is “stillness of the mind and wisdom”. As just mentioned,

At age 30 with establishment, is “moral precepts”.

At age 40 have no delusions, is “stillness of the mind and wisdom”.

At age 60 hearing various opinions are pleasing to the ear, is “moral-precepts, stillness of the mind and wisdom”.

At age 70 by following one’s wishes without crossing over the established standards, is awesome. There are three kinds of wisdom: “from reading (hearing or instruction), from reflection, from practice of Samadhi”; a higher level. The “moral-precepts, stillness of the mind and wisdom” are a one-pass operation. The three kinds of wisdom “from reading (hearing or instruction), from reflection, from practice of Samadhi” is one-pass operation. Once you have contact with the situation, you will immediately understand what it is.

“Wisdom from reading (hearing or instruction)” is being in contact.

“Wisdom from reflection” is clearly understanding in the mind.

“Wisdom from practice of Samadhi” is making amendments.

You will see it right away, know it right away, and amend it right away; it is af one-pass operation.

Confucius statements are identical with the School of Buddhism. Therefore, proper human relationships and basic education of the ancients were relatively deep-rooted. The childhood of our generation only had a little of these types of concepts, the next generation does not have this, and the generation after the next generation will absolutely behave with “greed, aversion, ignorance, arrogance and suspicion”. The next generation after that there is no need to mention. They will be cutting and killing each other; it will be normal to them.

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


( ) 持戒波羅蜜

(上星期講到: 我給它加個「八十預知時至,往生極樂世界」。人生這樣才有意思。)









剛講完「貪、瞋、痴、慢、疑」,這現象我們把它轉過來,轉成「戒、定、慧」。實際「持戒」當中有定,有慧。剛講:三十而立 -「戒」。四十不惑 -「定慧」。六十耳順 – 「戒、定、慧」。「七十從心所欲不踰矩」 – 這厲害,「聞、思、修」,更高一層了。「戒、定、慧」一次完成。「聞、思、修」一次完成。一接觸境界,馬上心裡就明白是什麼。「聞」是接觸,「思」是心裡明白,「修」是修正。馬上看到,馬上知道,馬上修正,一次完成。


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