MASTER SHEN-LONG | Explanation of the Title: Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 117
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Explanation of the Title: Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra, Part 117

(Last week we ended with, “Furthermore, this concept of enlightenment became increasingly clear, and one could apply to one’s living more and more”.)  

Throughout his life, in the early phase everybody present is about the same and lived in the United States for 20 to 30 years. However.  He probably lived longer for around 40 to 50 years.  He also came to Western society in the early days, at that time the Eastern region society was in turmoil. He came to Western society, after much trouble he found a job to start his teaching career. While teaching, he worked another part-time job to support a family with wife and children. These experiences that most of us have been through, the psychological feelings are similar. 

Later, after he accepted the Buddha teaching, nothing changed in his life. The appearance of life was usual, work was the same, and he got along with the public; however, psychologically there was a noticeable big change.  

He stated: “I used to gradually relax to be at peace, without stress. But strangely, after he learned the Buddha’s way, peacefulness was no longer required and the pressure and even the concept of peacefulness was all gone. Seeing different nationalities, I feel they are myself. Seeing cats, dogs, birds flying in the sky, ants and mosquitoes; I feel they are myself. It is strange that all beings on earth feel like me.” 

This “self- I” of his has multiple meanings. The first meaning is that although the appearance is different, for instance, animals are different from us, germs are different from us, the mountains, rivers, the great earth and trees are different from us; most people will not pay attention to this. 

What do the trees, mountains and rivers or the great earth outside matter to us? 
What do the ants, mosquitoes, cats or dogs outside matter to us?” 

   He said: “Yes, it does matter. They are manifested from our mind.”

This is amazing. This is after learning the teaching of Buddha, he applied it. Judging by wisdom, what he sees is not the superficial appearance, he perceived the radiant essence of the innate life of all beings. 

            I asked him: “Do you think that an ant could become human?” 

            He said: “Yes”. 

            I asked: “How to change?” 

He said: “It is very simple, so long as its concept of thinking changes to the human concept of thinking, then its next life will become human.” 
His words are really based in the situation. Then I asked: “How about the mountains, the rivers and the great earth?”
He said: “Yes, some mountains look harmonious, some waters provide harmonious feelings and some mountains give feelings of horror and water can be fearful to look at, what is the meaning of this? It is transformed by the will of the people and the way of their thinking. Some nations in the world are born in the environment of barren hills and treacherous rapids, and some nations live in the environment of contentment, harmoniousness, and happy; all is manifested from the way of one’s thinking.” 
He was so right about this. Then we continued talking about another matter: 
I asked: “Since you realize this level, what do you want to do in your next life?” 
He said: “That is simple, in my next life I wish to restore my radiant essential nature, as the essence to help those all living souls who are still in delusion.” 

It is uneasy, studying and working for a lifetime, and after difficult living for a lifetime he finally figured it out. Is there still time? There is still time. So long as there is still one breath left, you can change your concept and achieve immediate success. 

I recall when I was in Junior High, on the first day of school everyone gathered for morning assembly and all the students had to recite the Youth Code. The first code is the foundation of happiness is to help others. I did not understand when I was young, where is this happiness from helping others? But knowing to help others is incredibly good. It says the foundation of happinessthe foundation is the source, helping all beings is incredibly happy. We live to 40 and 50 years old, or 50 and 60 years old, we may feel this a little bit; but how can one understand when we are young. 

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

 (八)  忍辱波羅蜜

(上星期講到: 而且覺悟的觀念,越來越清晰,越來越在生活上可以用。)

他這一生,早期我想跟在座各位差不多,在美國都是二、三十年,他可能更久四、五十年。他早期也是一樣到西方社會來,那時候東方社會動亂。他到西方社會來,好不容易找到事情,開始教教書。自己一邊教書一邊打工,還要養活老婆、小孩,這些經歷大家都經歷過,心理上的感受也差不多。

後來他接受佛法以後,生活上倒是沒有什麼改變,生活上外表照常,一樣上班,一樣跟大眾相處。可是心理上起了很大、很大的變化。

他說:「以前平是漸漸放鬆,沒有壓力。可是奇怪學了佛以後, 平也沒有了,不要說壓力,平的觀念也沒有了。看到不同的民族,都覺得是自己。看到小貓、小狗、天上飛的鳥、螞蟻、蚊蟲,也覺得是自己。很奇怪,地球上的眾生,感覺上就是自己。」         

他這個自己,有多重含義。第一個含義就是雖然形體外貌不一樣,譬如:動物跟我們不一樣,細菌跟我們不一樣,山河、大地、樹木跟我們不一樣,一般人不會注意這些。

外面樹木、山河、大地跟我們有什麼關係?

外面螞蟻、蚊蟲、小貓、小狗跟我們有什麼關係?

他說:「有關係。這是我們心裡面所造出來。」                    

這個厲害了!這就是他學了佛法以後用上了。用智慧來看,他看到不是外表,看到一切眾生本有的生命中光明的本體。這他感覺到了。                  

我問他:「你覺得螞蟻可不可以變成人?」

他說:「可以。」

我說:「怎麼變?」

他說:「很簡單,只要牠的思想觀念變成人的思想觀念,牠下一 生就變人了。」

這個話講得真是非常的進入狀況。

那我說:「山河大地?」

他說:「對,有的山看起來非常祥和,有的水很祥和;有的山很恐怖,水看起來也是很可怕,這是什麼?人心變的,人的想法變的。世界上有的民族,生在窮山惡水當中,有的民族生活在安和樂利當中,人心想法變的。」

講得很對。那我們又談到一個事情。

我說:「既然你體會到這樣程度,下一生你想做什麼?」

他說:「很簡單,下一生我希望能夠恢復我的光明體性、光明的 本體,來幫助這些還在迷夢當中的一切生靈。」

這不容易。念了一輩子書,打了一輩子工,辛苦了一輩子,終於想通了。來不來得及?來得及。只要還有一口氣在,把你觀念一轉,成功了。

我記得以前小時候考初中,考上的第一天上朝會,唸「青年守則」。第一就是「助人為快樂之本」。小時候不懂。助人這個樂,到底在那裡?但知道幫助人家是不錯很好。它說「為快樂之本」,「本」就是源頭,幫助眾生很快樂。我們活到四、五十歲,五、六十歲也許有點感覺,可是小時候那裡懂。七、八歲小孩子、十二、三歲的小朋友,助人為快樂之本,有的小孩就懂。

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