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 20180129《靜思妙蓮華》 光相所照 莊嚴說法 (第1272集) (法華經•見寶塔品第十一)

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發表主題: 20180129《靜思妙蓮華》 光相所照 莊嚴說法 (第1272集) (法華經•見寶塔品第十一)   周六 1月 27, 2018 9:29 pm

20180129《靜思妙蓮華》光相所照 莊嚴說法 (第1272集) (法華經•見寶塔品第十一)

⊙「先明依報莊嚴次明正報說法,四方四維上下乃是國土無量,各五百萬億那由他,恆沙等諸佛國土,一佛有無數千萬億無量菩薩。」
⊙諸佛本懷護念,為諸眾說眾妙法。四維上下光相所照,大眾承光,見之無滯。
⊙「彼諸國土,皆以玻璃為地,寶樹、寶衣以為莊嚴,無數千萬億菩薩充滿其中,遍張寶幔,寶網羅上。」《法華經見寶塔品第十一》
⊙「彼國諸佛以大妙音而說諸法;及見無量千萬億菩薩,遍滿諸國,為眾說法。」《法華經見寶塔品第十一》
⊙「南西北方、四維上下,白毫相光所照之處,亦復如是。」《法華經見寶塔品第十一》
⊙南西北方、四維上下:方位有十,光照東方所見如是。例餘九方光所照處其相亦然。
⊙白毫相光所照之處,亦復如是:眉間毫光所照與東方處相同,故云:亦復如是。
⊙先明依報莊嚴,次明正報說法。四方四維上下,各五百萬億那由他恆河沙等國土諸佛。
⊙一佛有無數千萬億菩薩,乃是國土無量,諸佛無量,眷屬無量,主伴重重。
⊙「爾時、十方諸佛各告眾菩薩言:善男子!我今應往娑婆世界釋迦牟尼佛所,並供養多寶如來寶塔。」《法華經見寶塔品第十一》
⊙善男子!我今應往娑婆世界釋迦牟尼佛所:光既照彼,知意故來。
⊙並供養多寶如來寶塔:並欲供養多寶佛塔。此釋十方諸佛感應言來。
⊙諸佛告眾同來:彼此一體,原非自他,告眾來者,乃隨機權應。

【證嚴上人開示】
「先明依報莊嚴次明正報說法,四方四維上下乃是國土無量,各五百萬億那由他,恆沙等諸佛國土,一佛有無數千萬億無量菩薩。」

先明依報莊嚴
次明正報說法
四方四維上下
乃是國土無量
各五百萬億那由他
恆沙等諸佛國土
一佛有無數千萬億
無量菩薩

這段文,前面所講說的,記憶,要記著。前面的文,用相來會合道理,形象就是寶塔現在釋迦佛,講說《法華經》的道場,從地湧出這個寶塔。從這樣開始來描述,這個形象裡面的含義,我們要去用心去體會內含的道理,這個道理也就是要讓我們,更加明白依報、正報。我們釋迦牟尼佛,在過去生無量劫前,無法算計,這樣一路生生世世在人群中,或者是五道中,一個心願,就是度眾生,教化眾生,來來回回。這個依、正報,隨順自心意,來人間,那就是現人類的身形;若是到地獄,就在地獄中與受罪人在一起,也現出了救人、感人的故事;在畜生中也是,在畜生群類中,不論是象王、獅王、鹿王等等,依那個環境,那個依、正二報,在那個地方,無非就是要去度眾生,在任何眾生界,他就現出莊嚴的形態,這無不都是莊嚴、感動人的身教。這就是隨自心意,不論到哪裡,都是莊嚴那個範圍,作為典範,作為教育。

因緣成熟了,在人間,離我們現在二千多年前了,卻是現在還是我們的導師,我們還是依照釋迦牟尼佛,所傳下來的法,我們還是在受用,依教奉行。這就是佛累生世在眾生界,這樣來救度眾生,來教化眾生。所以我們要很清楚,「先明依報莊嚴」,任何一個界,他都是典範,來教育,都是莊嚴形象。「次明正報說法」。來人間,除了他的身相莊嚴,他的依報,依在這個時代,那個國家,成為仁王的後代,這就是莊嚴。而且思想與我們一般人不同,超越,超越了他的年齡,超越了他的思想。雖然在王宮裡很多的享受,卻是他的思想、觀念,看富貴人家是這樣,宮外多少苦難人家,不論是富貴、苦難,都有一個共同的生態,那就是老、病、死,同樣在老、病、死,這種無常的境界,卻也是人類階級這樣在分別。有的就是受恭恭敬敬,有的是這樣賤待、拖磨,這是他所感覺不公平。

人類這樣無常的人間,又加上這種生態的分別,他要去打破這種的觀念,所以想出家。他了解身為仁王,也不過是一方而已,天地之大,光說是在印度,土地那麼大,但是各立城為主,稱為王,這還是有限。就是看到這麼普遍,不平等的人生,無常的生態,所以他還是認為唯有通徹道理,如何將人的心態改變,才能將天下人類的生活改變,生活的形態要改變,這唯有道理,所以他修行去了。修行,受盡很多風霜雪凍,這麼多年的時間,四季,春、夏、秋、冬,外在的生活,有為法、無為法,這樣該了解的全都清楚了,才好好地一段時間靜修,將心完全這樣靜下來。靜下來這念心,專心與天地之間去會合。天空法界,這些道理他靜靜地思考,日出、日落,時間、空間,與這世間大空間,種種的道理,寧靜地思考。一段這麼長的時間,將他的內心所有煩惱、無明,塵沙的惑完全清淨了,通徹了解,終於覺悟了,與天地宇宙合而一體。

天地空間能包容的有多少?他的覺性智海,就有含括了多少的道理,那是無量無邊啊!要為人間說法,那就是「四方四維上下,乃是國土無量」,這是覺者,已經覺悟了,不受這個境界,四方、四維所障礙,上、下,大空間。這宇宙之間多少的世界,無法去測量,這就是覺悟之後的境界,這是道理。在依、正報,是累生世這樣累積來的,所去體會了解,不斷不斷累積智慧,無不都是在人群中來累積。上求開示,入人群去體會,發心結好緣,這種眾生緣的累積,無量無數,這種六度萬行,不是一生世,是累生世。所以「各五百萬億那由他,恆沙等諸佛國土」。五百萬億,記得嗎?為了要集諸分身佛,所以從眉間放出白毫相光,這樣一光遍照在那東方。大家應該還要記得。僅僅在一方,他就要經歷了五百萬億,那由他恆沙等諸佛國土,這表示累生累世。在這四方、四維,從無始以來就是這樣,光是一方的國土就那麼多了,所以能表示,「一佛有無數千萬億,無量菩薩」。僅僅一個東方,五百萬億那由他恆河沙,「五百萬億那由他恆河沙」那個數字,與過去所在說的,我們〈化城喻品〉,所說的塵點劫。

塵點劫以前,大通智勝佛的時代,這已經釋迦牟尼佛向我們說,那麼長久以前以前的以前,這麼長久的時間。現在在說的是國土,釋迦牟尼佛所分身,去化度眾生的國土,到底有多少了呢?光是向東方去,就有五百萬億那由他,恆河沙等諸佛國土,那些國土都是釋迦佛這樣用那麼長,無量的時間,所化度過的國土,那些眾生。那個地方,那麼就「一佛有無數,千萬億無量菩薩」。一尊佛出世,就能有無量無數的菩薩,因為法從口出,一個人說出了道理,微妙的道理,很多人聽,很多人入心,入心後,體會這個道理,身體力行,這麼多無數的人的口中,再講出這個真理,這麼多人的口中再講出的真理,更多人去聽,這就是《無量義經》說的,「無量從一生,一生無量」,道理就是這樣,所以「一佛有無量數,千萬億無量菩薩」。這就是道理,道理,我們若能透徹了解,人人道理收納入心來,他按照道理受教了,自然我們的煩惱無明,錯誤的觀念就愈來愈減少,慧命的種子就愈來愈增加,人間世事道理分明,這就是智慧,所以用心去體會。

諸佛本懷護念
為諸眾說眾妙法
四維上下光相所照
大眾承光
見之無滯

諸佛這麼多成就,一個人能成就這麼多人的觀念,改惡從善,這個觀念能改過來,這就是諸佛的本懷。人人本具佛性,人人從佛性中,發揮了我們的本能、潛能,都發揮出來了,這就是在教化眾生,這是諸佛的本懷,盼望眾生這念真如本性,能夠啟發出來,本能、潛能能夠發揮出來。所以「為諸眾生說眾妙法」。諸佛的智慧,就是希望啟發人人真如本性。所以「四維上下光相所照」。眉間這個毫光這樣照過去,能夠不只是東方,也能四維上下、東西南北,東西南北這個範圍裡面,四維、上下。因為東是無窮盡的東。西呢?也有無窮盡的西,所以東西南北是無界限的,東邊又有遙遠的東邊,西邊又有遙遠的西邊,所以各個東西南北,都有它的東西南北,無限量,所以一光一照,那就是四維上下,那個光相全都透徹。

大眾承這個光,「見之無滯」。這個光就是無障礙的光,就像聲音這樣說出去,尤其是現在的科技,胸前這顆麥克風,自然它就這樣傳去了,傳上「雲端」,傳上任何一個空間,不只是臺灣這個國度能夠傳達,地球上,只要這個頻率到達的地方,它就收得到。那就是心與心能通,眾生心通達佛心,佛的心聲,我們也聽得到。所以我們平常一句話說「知音」,了解我心裡想要說的話,我們也了解佛陀他本懷的心念,這個妙法,我們也能了解,契佛心懷。佛陀的心懷是護念著妙法,我們了解了,佛陀說出來,我們體會了,這就像一個頻率一樣,了解,大人了解,孩子也了解,遠的、近的,年紀大、年紀小。

臺南一群小菩薩就來與我分享,他們也是在「薰法香」呢!很有心得,孩子他們一個一個,都有他們的心得,讓我聽得很歡喜。他們這樣說,告訴我:「師公說的,蠢動含靈皆有佛性,要珍惜因緣,要當聞佛法。爸爸、媽媽他們在聽佛法,我也跟爸爸、媽媽說,我要和他們一起去聽法。」父母陪他們一起來,父母很歡喜,在旁邊聽,孩子與師公在對談,很歡喜。問他們,他們就說,有問有答。

他們說,聽經,他們若能一個月超過,開始他們就互相勉勵,也就是寫筆記。他們就帶著筆記來給我看,年紀小的,還有幼稚園的,不會寫字的,就寫ㄅ、ㄆ、ㄇ,畫圖。我就會問他們:「你們畫這是什麼圖?」彥合就說:「師公說,人的心像一個倉庫,裡面有種子,這就是種子。」「這四四方方是什麼?」「就是田啊!師公說,種子播入田裡,就會長稻子。」就向我說一篇的道理,他說:「一生無量,可以收很多好的種子。」我再看,另外一個格,說:「你這是畫什麼?怎麼這樣亂七八糟?」他說:「師公也說,心裡有惡的種子,惡的種子就像炸彈,一念惡的心就像炸彈一樣,會爆發。」這樣跟我說呢!這是在臺南。彥合又說:「薰法香有五項好,有五得,五項所得。」我就問他:「什麼五項?」

他就說:「第一項,能夠聽法,薰法。薰法香,覺得很歡喜,這叫做法喜充滿。我這一天若有聽法,我的精神可以很好。」「第二呢?」「第二,可以和很多好朋友共同精進。」我就再問:「第三好呢?得到什麼?」「第三好,就是薰法香之後可以與這些好朋友,一起慢慢吃飯,不會像在家裡睡過頭,媽媽把我們叫起來,就來不及上學,吃早餐就狼吞虎嚥。」他說:「我們在這裡,聽經結束才六點而已,我們就可以和這些好朋友,慢慢吃早餐,早餐吃完。」我就說:「第四好呢?」「早餐吃完,我們就開始可以去上學,我們可以慢慢來。以前吃,早餐要吃得很快,上學已經來不及,現在慢慢吃飯,吃飽了,還可以這樣,上學最早到,又不遲到。」

我就問:「第五種呢?」第五種,他說:「第五種,我們如果到了中午,吃飽飯,老師要我們午休,我們午休,趴在桌上就睡了。以前都睡不著,所以就趴在桌上這樣翻來覆去,老師會記,『不乖寶寶』。」這就是他說,從薰法香之後,簿子上,老師再也不曾,記他是「不乖寶寶」了。這就是他的「五得」。

所以他們的聽法,也有這樣的心得。看看,一個人說話,在這裡說話,那些孩子在臺南,同樣每天、每天,相信現在也是一樣在聽法,這是有一群的小菩薩哦!「四維上下」,這樣一個人說話,可以開闊「南西北方」都聽得到,這是「一光所照」,這是一種譬喻。「大眾承光」,見光知意,看到眉間的毫光,大家就了解了,這就是無障礙,聽法也無障礙。

前面的文說:「彼諸國土,皆以玻璃為地,寶樹、寶衣以為莊嚴,無數千萬億菩薩充滿其中,遍張寶幔,寶網羅上。」

彼諸國土
皆以玻璃為地
寶樹 寶衣
以為莊嚴
無數千萬億菩薩
充滿其中
遍張寶幔
寶網羅上
《法華經見寶塔品第十一》

這是前面在形容,那些國土莊嚴的形象很清淨,寶樹很整齊,人人全部所穿的就是寶衣。這寶衣,都是柔和忍辱衣,人人都是莊嚴,依報莊嚴在那個國土,很多都是菩薩,都在那其中。

彼國諸佛
以大妙音而說諸法
及見無量
千萬億菩薩
遍滿諸國為眾說法
《法華經見寶塔品第十一》

「彼國諸佛以大妙音而說諸法」,那每一個國家的佛,都是在那國土裡,不斷講說妙法。以及很多的菩薩,就是「遍滿諸國,為眾說法」。這就是佛也在說法,菩薩也在說法,那個國土是充滿妙法。

接下來這段文就這樣說:「南西北方、四維上下,白毫相光所照之處,亦復如是。」

南西北方
四維上下
白毫相光所照之處
亦復如是
《法華經見寶塔品第十一》

那就是方位,南西北方,是南方、西方、北方,前面有東方,現在就有南方、西方、北方,共起來是四方,四維,上下。這樣為十,所以叫做十方。十方分身,所以,十方,十方是由眉間的毫光。眉間的毫光,那就是中道,中道就是如一道光一樣,這樣照過去,四方、四維、上下,這樣都感受到這個光照。「光照東方所見」,就是這樣,其餘的九方也是同樣是這樣。

南西北方
四維上下:
方位有十
光照東方
所見如是
例餘九方
光所照處
其相亦然

所以「白毫相光所照之處,亦復如是」。都是這樣。

白毫相光所照之處
亦復如是:
眉間毫光所照
與東方處相同
故云
亦復如是

這個眉間毫光所照,與東方的地方都一樣,所以叫做「亦復如是」。

「先明依報莊嚴」,首先就是說依報莊嚴,這每一個國土裡,那環境很莊嚴。「次明正報」,剛剛說過,正報就是說法。那個國土裡,人人莊嚴,柔和忍辱衣,都是修菩薩行,人人說法都是說妙法,「四方四維上下,各五百萬億那由他,恆河沙等國土」。因為東方是這樣,四方四維上下,就是其餘九方全都一樣,就是五百萬億那由他,恆河沙等諸國,每一個地方,都還有這樣無量無量的國土。

先明依報莊嚴
次明正報說法
四方四維上下
各五百萬億那由他
恆河沙等國土諸佛

「一佛有無數千萬億菩薩」。只要每一尊佛出世,自然就能教化無數,千萬億的菩薩。這在國土也是無量,就如這樣輾轉,「諸佛無量,眷屬無量」。眷屬就是,一個人能再傳給很多人,叫做無量眷屬。有主、有伴,有領導的人,有隨從的人,「主伴重重」,就是這樣一夥一夥,一群一群,愈帶愈多。

「為眾說法」,這樣一群一群,一直為人來講法,這法是多麼的普遍啊!所以「光相所照,大眾承光,見之無滯」。

一佛有無數
千萬億菩薩
乃是國土無量
諸佛無量
眷屬無量
主伴重重
為眾說法
光相所照
大眾承光
見之無滯

這些大眾看到這個光,都沒有受障礙,聽法無障礙,光也無障礙。就如陽光,陽光一照,不受障礙,法也一樣,聲音一傳,也不受障礙,只要頻率相應,心相應,我們的心與法相應,自然就無障礙。心若有煩惱,就障礙法;障礙法,就如光被東西這樣遮住,就透不過。我們的真如,就是無明煩惱將我們遮蓋,透不過去。所以我們就要用功,先除去這些無明煩惱。若無法,就沒有辦法除,有法,就是要重法,將一一的煩惱去除,才有辦法光入我們的真如本性。一旦通達了,就全都無礙。

下面這段文再說:「爾時、十方諸佛各告眾菩薩言:善男子!我今應往娑婆世界釋迦牟尼佛所,並供養多寶如來寶塔。」

爾時
十方諸佛
各告眾菩薩言:
善男子
我今應往娑婆世界
釋迦牟尼佛所
並供養
多寶如來寶塔
《法華經見寶塔品第十一》

這光一照,那時候,當時,十方諸佛同時,向他們各個昏菩薩,各領導的菩薩,這樣說:「我現在應該要往娑婆世界,釋迦牟尼佛的地方去供養,與供養多寶佛塔。」這就是因為一光所號召,大家就來了。「十方諸佛」,各個向他座下的菩薩來說話。

善男子
我今應往娑婆世界
釋迦牟尼佛所:
光既照彼
知意故來

「善男子,我今應往娑婆世界釋迦牟尼佛所」就是「光既照彼,知意故來」。看到光,就知道佛的意,這樣自然就來了。這就是表示心應,應佛心,這樣他們就來了。

「並供養多寶如來寶塔」。他們不只是應光照,知佛意而來,也就是來供養這多寶佛塔。現在世界的佛,來供養過去無量劫前的古佛,這是彼此。就像我們現在,我們這個班,這個學校,聽到我們同一所學校裡,有聘某個地方的教授來講課,就很多的學生,他們也會越系、越班,這樣來共同聽這位,遠途來的教授講座,來聽。同樣的道理,那就是我們現在同樣,彼此之間,諸佛,就是法,這個法,法身的佛,那就是會集天地宇宙萬法,全都會集在一起。今古如是,現在與以前一樣,道理是一如,同樣的。所以他們「供養多寶如來寶塔」,就是尊重從古以來的道理。而現在呢?現在的道理來將它會合起來,就是應和,會合起來,法來會合,「並欲供養多寶佛塔」。

並供養
多寶如來寶塔:
並欲供養多寶佛塔
此釋十方諸佛
感應言來

這就是解釋,解釋十方諸佛來感應,所以叫做「來」,感應到這個一光所照,這樣而會集。

「諸佛告眾同來」。意思就是說,「一體」,一尊佛,他的光一照,諸佛就這樣會合過來,這表示彼此一體。現在的釋迦佛不動,在他的靈山會上,眉間的毫光一照,就是此佛這個光一照,那就是十方的諸佛,那就是道理,佛的內心深處,他的真理,這個一切智、道種智、一切種智,這樣會合起來。所以說「彼此一體,原非自他」,沒有分我與你,道理,他和你和我,是同一種道理,釋迦牟尼佛體會的道理,與多寶佛所體會到的道理,是一如,同體。古佛是這樣,今佛也是這樣;此佛是這樣,彼佛也是這樣。我們人人聽同一個道理,道理不變,是我們自己觀念思想變,道理永遠都是一如,所以「原非自他」,道理就是這樣原在。

所以「告眾來者,乃隨機權應」。

諸佛告眾同來:
彼此一體
原非自他
告眾來者
乃隨機權應

這樣一光照去,大家共同體會這個光,這就是表示「一」,同一個道理,這麼遠,這表示每一項,在天地宇宙間,任何一項,歸納下來也是一個道理。不論是物理,「成、住、壞、空」,這也是一種道理,成住壞空;或者是人的生理,「生、老、病、死」,也是沒有了;我們的內心一直起心動念,「生、住、異、滅」,也是沒有,同樣的道理,不論是空、是死、是滅,沒有了,這都是同一個道理。但是在物質上,名詞不同,道理是一,所以這就是一體,非自他。

一光能攝住這麼多的道理,這就是「來」。道理全都歸納起來,天地宇宙合而為一,這個真理。就一光號召過來,這樣叫做「告眾來者」,就是這樣,這樣這麼多就合起來。「乃隨機權應」,眾生的根機,佛陀說法四十多年,先權後實,不論談空說有,還是歸納下來就是這樣。所以我們要用心,道理本來是一,只是眾生將它複雜化了。凡事就是很簡單,就是因為人間社會,人心複雜,所以就變成事物複雜。我們現在要回歸簡單,那就是要撥開一切無明,時時多用心!
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發表主題: 回復: 20180129《靜思妙蓮華》 光相所照 莊嚴說法 (第1272集) (法華經•見寶塔品第十一)   周日 7月 15, 2018 11:58 am

Explanations by Master Cheng-Yan
Subject: The Appearance of Radiating Light (光相所照 莊嚴說法)
Date: January.29.2018

“First this explains [Sakyamuni’s] circumstantial retributions of magnificence, then explains His direct retributions of expounding the Dharma. In our four cardinal and intermediate directions above and below, there were infinite lands; each direction had Buddha-lands as numerous as the sands of 500 trillion nayutas of Ganges Rivers. Each Buddha had countless trillions, infinite numbers of Bodhisattvas.”

We talked about this sutra passage previously. Let us try to recall it. This previous sutra passages use appearances to illustrate the principles. The imagery described was the emergence of the stupa of treasures at Sakyamuni Buddha’s Lotus Dharma-assembly. The stupa of treasures emerged from the ground. This is when He began describing the meaning behind this imagery. We must mindfully seek to comprehend the principles contained here. These principles can help us more thoroughly understand circumstantial and direct retribution. Sakyamuni Buddha, in His past lifetimes over innumerable kalpas, spent lifetime after lifetime living among people, or throughout the Five Realms. His only wish was to deliver sentient beings by teaching and transforming them over many lifetimes. His circumstantial and direct retributions always followed His heart’s intent. When He came to the world, He took human form. When He went to hell to be together with those who were suffering for their crimes there, He helped people there also; there is a moving story about this. Likewise, when He was born into the animal realm, [He came as] an elephant-king, a lion-king, a deer-king, and so on; it depended on the situation. With His circumstantial and direct retributions, wherever He went, He [manifested there] to deliver sentient beings. Whatever realm He manifested in, He always manifested a magnificent appearance. He was always very dignified, and He moved others by His example. He went wherever He intended. No matter where He went, He always dignified His surroundings. He served as a role model to teach others. When His causes and conditions matured, He [attained Buddhahood] in the human realm. Though this was over 2000 years before our time, He is still our guiding teacher to this day. We still follow the Dharma that Sakyamuni Buddha passed down to us. We still make use of it and practice according to its teachings. The Buddha spent many lifetimes in the realms of sentient beings in order to deliver them by teaching and transforming them. So, we must clearly understand this. “First this explains [Sakyamuni’s] circumstantial retributions of magnificence.” In whichever realm He appears, He is always a role model, and the forms He uses to teach are always magnificent. “Then [it] explains His direct retributions of expounding the Dharma.”

Besides His magnificent human appearance, His circumstantial retributions also brought about His birth in that particular era, in that country, as the son of a benevolent king. This was also magnificent. Furthermore, his thinking was different from the average person. He had wisdom far beyond His years; his thinking was transcendent. Despite the many pleasures of palace life, his thinking and views [were focused on] how he saw the wealthy living [compared to] the many people who suffered outside the palace. He realized that regardless of whether one is well-off or in hardship, everyone’s life shares the same course. Everyone experiences aging, illness and death, these states of impermanence. Furthermore, people were also divided into castes. Some were highly respected, but others were looked down on and poorly treated. He felt that this was unfair. Human life is impermanent, and on top of that, people were segregated by caste. Wanting to break this ideology, he decided to leave the lay life. He realized that even being the king, his influence would be limited to a single place. On this vast Earth, India alone is very large, yet those who ruled as kings were still limited [to their sphere of influence]. [The prince] saw these widespread inequalities and the impermanence of life. Thus, he believed that only by thoroughly understanding the principles and learning to change people’s mindsets could he then change the lives of everyone in the world. The only way he could change the way they lived was with the principles. So, he began engaging in spiritual practice. While engaging in spiritual practice, he suffered wind, frost, snow and ice. For many years [He endured] the four seasons, spring, summer, fall and winter, living out in the elements. Whether conditioned or unconditioned phenomena, he came to clearly understand everything. Practicing earnestly in stillness at this time, he completely quieted his mind, stilled his thoughts and focused on coming together with the universe. He silently contemplated the universe and the rising and setting of the sun, as well as time, space and the vast natural world; these were all principles he serenely contemplated. Over a long period of time, he completely eliminated his afflictions, ignorance and dust-life delusions. With thorough understanding, he finally awakened and became one with the universe. As many principles as the universe contains, that is how many principles the Buddha absorbed into His ocean of enlightened wisdom. It is boundless! He wanted to teach this to all people. So, “in the four cardinal and intermediate directions, above and below, there were infinite lands.”

Having already awakened, He was no longer [limited] by His environment. In the four cardinal and intermediate directions, above and below, in this great space, in this universe, the number of worlds is incalculable. This was His state after awakening and [realizing] the principles. His circumstantial and direct retributions were accumulated from everything that He experienced and understood in past lives. He constantly accumulated wisdom, always by going among people. He sought teachings [from Buddhas] and went among people to experience them. He formed aspirations and created good affinities. The affinities He accumulated with sentient beings were boundless and infinite. Actualizing the Six Paramitas in all actions is not something one can accomplish in a lifetime but over many accumulated lifetimes.

So, “Each direction had Buddha-lands as numerous as the sands of 500 trillion nayutas of Ganges Rivers.” Five trillion, do you remember? To gather together His manifestations, He emitted light from the tuft between His eyes that illuminated all of [these worlds in] the east. Everyone should still remember this. In that direction alone, [His light shone] through as many Buddha-lands as the sands of 500 trillion nayutas of Ganges Rivers. This represented the many lifetimes [He had spent]. In the four cardinal and intermediate directions, since Beginningless Time, [He engaged in practice]. The lands in one direction alone were so numerous. So, this shows us that, “Each Buddha had countless trillions, infinite numbers of Bodhisattvas.” In the east alone, [there were lands as numerous as] “the sands of 500 trillion nayutas of Ganges Rivers.“ The sands of 500 trillion nayutas of Ganges Rivers,” this number, is the same as what we spoke of previously in the Chapter on the Parable of the Conjured City, the number referred to by “dust-inked kalpas”. Dust-inked kalpas in the past was Great Unhindered Buddha’s era. Sakyamuni Buddha already taught us about that time long ago in the distant past. This was a very long time ago. Now, this is talking about the lands where Sakyamuni’s manifestations had gone to transform and deliver sentient beings. How many of these were there? In the east alone, there were as many Buddha-lands as the sands of five trillion nayutas of Ganges Rivers. In those many lands, Sakyamuni Buddha spent so much time, Sakyamuni Buddha spent so much time, an infinite amount of time, transforming and delivering living beings. [Among] the sentient beings in those places, “Each Buddha had countless trillions, infinite numbers of Bodhisattvas.” When a Buddha appears in the world, He will have countless numbers, infinite numbers of Bodhisattvas. This is because He openly teaches the Dharma.

When a person teaches the principles, the subtle and wondrous principles, many people will listen and take them to heart. Taking them to heart, they realize the principles and put them into practice. When so many countless people also begin to openly discuss the true principles, then even more people will come to hear them. The Sutra of Infinite Meanings says, “Infinity arises from one, one gives rise to infinity.” This is the principle. Thus, “Each Buddha had countless trillions, infinite numbers of Bodhisattvas.” This is the same principle. If we thoroughly understand the principles and accept these teachings into our hearts, then naturally our afflictions, ignorance and mistaken views will continue to decrease and the seeds of our wisdom-life continually increase. Clearly discerning worldly matters and the principles depends on wisdom. So, we must mindfully seek to experience this.

All Buddhas have the original intent of safeguarding and expounding the wondrous Dharma. Above, below, in the four intermediate directions, this radiant appearance illuminated everything. Because of this radiance, the assembly could see without obstruction.

All Buddhas can accomplish this. One being can change the views of so many others, changing evil into good. Thus, transforming people’s views is the original intent of all Buddhas. Everyone intrinsically has Buddha-nature. All of us, through our Buddha-nature, can exercise our inherent abilities; we can express these latent abilities. Teaching and transforming all beings like this is the original intent of all Buddhas. They hope the True Suchness in sentient beings can be awakened, that their inherent ability, their latent ability, can be expressed. So, “They expound the wondrous Dharma for the sake of all the sentient beings.”

These Buddha, in their wisdom hope to awaken the intrinsic nature of True Suchness in everyone. “In the four intermediate directions, above and below, this radiant appearance illuminated everything. The light emitted from between His eyes illuminated not only the east, but also above, below and in the four intermediate and the four [cardinal] directions. [It illuminates] the east, west, south and north, the four intermediate directions, above and below. The east extends infinitely eastward. And the west? The west also extends endlessly. So, east, west, south and north are limitless. The east itself again has an even further east. The west itself again has an even further west. So, the east, west, south and north each has its own east, west, south and north, which all extend endlessly. So, this one light illuminated at once [everything] above and below and in the four intermediate directions. That radiance illuminated everything. Because of this radiance, the assembly “could see without obstruction,” This radiant light was unobstructed.

This is similar to how [my] voice now travels. In particular, with today’s technology, the microphone in front of me automatically broadcasts [my voice]. It is transmitted to the “cloud,” from which it is broadcast everywhere. Not only is it broadcast throughout Taiwan, but throughout the world, as long as this frequency can be received. This is minds can be communicating with each other. Sentient beings can understand the Buddha’s mind. We can also hear the Buddha’s inner voice as well. So, we often talk about “one who knows our heart,” someone who understands what we want to say. We, too, can understand the Buddha’s intent; we can understand this wondrous Dharma too and resonate with what is in the Buddha’s mind. The Buddha’s intent was to safeguard the wondrous Dharma. We [need to] understand and realize what the Buddha taught us. It is like a frequency we can [tune in to]. Adults can understand and so can children, whether they are far or near, old or young. A group of little Bodhisattvas came from Tainan to share with me. They too listen to my morning teachings. They are full of insights. One by one the children shared with me the lessons they had learned. It brought me joy to listen to them. They told me, “Master taught us that all living, moving beings have Buddha-nature. We should cherish causes and conditions, and we should listen to the Dharma. When father and mother go listen to the Dharma, I tell them that I want to go with them to listen to the Dharma.” The parents bring their children. It brings the parents joy to have their children by their side as I speak to them. They are so happy. I was asking them questions and they would answer me. They told me how, in listening the sutra, for more than a whole month they encouraged one another to take notes. They even brought their notebooks to show me.

They were still small, only in kindergarten, and could not yet write Chinese characters. They could only use the Chinese phonetic alphabet and draw pictures. I asked them, “What have you drawn there?” Yanhe said, “Master told us the mind is like a storehouse, with seeds inside it. These things are the seeds.” “What are those square things?” “Those are the fields! Master told us the seeds ae sown in the fields, as if growing rice.” He then repeated a principle to me, telling me, “One gives rise to infinity so one can harvest many good seeds.” Looking at another one of their drawings, I said, “What have you drawn here? Why is it such a mess?” He said, “Master also told us that if the mind has evil seeds, those evil seeds are just like bombs. An evil thought is just like a bomb that is waiting to explode.” That’s what he told me! This was in Tainan.

Yanhe also told me, “Five good things have happened to me since began listening to the Dharma. There are five things I have gained.” I asked him, “What are the five things?” He told me, “The first thing is that listening to and taking in the Dharma makes me very happy. This is called being filled with the Dharma-joy. Every day I listen to the Dharma, I have a lot of energy.” [I asked], “And the second thing?” “The second is that I can practice diligently with many good friends.” I again asked, “And the third? What else have you gained?” “The third good thing is that, after listening to the Dharma together, my friends and I can slowly eat breakfast together, unlike when I oversleep at home. My mother calls me to get up out of bed and I am late for class and have to wolf down my food.” He said, “When we finish listening to the Dharma, it is still only 6am, so my good friends and I can slowly eat our breakfast and finish it all.” I then asked him, “And the forth?” “Later, after breakfast, when we head off to school, we never need to rush. I used to have to eat so quickly, since I was already late for school. Now I can eat a good breakfast. I can eat my fill and still arrive early at school, I am never late.” Then I asked him, “What is the fifth?” The fifth, he said “The fifth is, at noon, after we eat, the teacher wants us to take a nap. Now when we rest after lunch, I fall asleep as soon as my head is on my desk. Before, I could never sleep, and I would fidget restlessly at my desk, and the teacher would mark me down as ’naughty.’” He told me that, since he started listening to the Dharma, he has never since been marked down as being naughty in the teacher’s book. These were his “five gains.” So, from listening to the Dharma, these are some of the insights they have gained.

This is what one of the children told me when he came here. Those children in Tainan do this day after day. I believe they are listening right now like always. They are a group of small Bodhisattvas! “In the four intermediate directions, above and below.” When someone teachers like this, throughout the “south, west and north” everyone can hear them. This “[radiance] illuminated everything.” This is a kind of metaphor. This is a kind of metaphor. “Because of this radiance, the assembly….” Seeing the light, everyone knew what it meant. Seeing the radiant light from between His eyes, everyone then understood. [Their understanding] was without obstruction. They listened to the Dharma without obstruction.

The previous passage said, “In all those lands, the ground was made of crystal. Trees of treasures and precious clothing made the lands magnificent. Countless trillions of Bodhisattvas filled the lands. Precious curtains were spread everywhere, and jeweled nets hung from above.

This was what was described previously, the magnificence and purity of those lands, the orderliness of the jeweled trees and how everyone wears precious clothing. Those precious clothes are the clothing of gentleness and patience. Everyone there is very dignified. The circumstantial retribution of being born in those lands is magnificent. There are many Bodhisattvas [living] there.

The Buddhas of those lands, in a great and wondrous voice, expounded all Dharma. They also saw the infinite trillions of Bodhisattvas all over those lands expound the Dharma for the assembly.

The Buddhas of those lands, in a great and wondrous voice, expounded all Dharma. Every Buddha in those lands continually expounds the wondrous Dharma there. There ae also many Bodhisattvas. They are “all over those lands, expounding the Dharma for the assembly.” There are both Buddhas and Bodhisattvas teaching the Dharma there; those lands are full of the wondrous Dharma.

The following sutra passage says, “South, west, north above and below and in the four intermediate directions, wherever the light from His tuft of white hair shone, it was also like that.”

These are the directions, the directions of south, west and north. [Here, it says] the south, the west and the north. Before it was only the east. Now it [speaks of] the south, west and north. In total, the fore cardinal directions, the four intermediate directions and above and below, make ten, which we call the ten directions. His manifestations were in all ten directions. So, these are the ten directions. The ten directions were all illuminated by the radiance that shone from between His brows. This beam of light [represents] the Middle Way. The Middle Way is just like a ray of light that illuminates all things in the four cardinal and intermediate directions, above and below. This radiance was seen everywhere. “When the light illuminated the east what [they] saw” was like this. It was the same in the other nine directions too.

South, west, north, above and below and in the four intermediate directions: There are the ten directions. When the light illuminated the east, what people saw as such. In the remaining nine directions, wherever the light shone, what appeared was the same.

So, “wherever the light from the tuft of white hair shone, it was also like that.” It was like this everywhere. “Wherever the light from the tuft of hair between His eyebrows shone.” It was just like in the east. So, it says, “It was also like that” “First this explains the circumstantial retributions of magnificence.” He first told of the magnificence of their circumstantial retributions. [He described] how in each of those lands, their surroundings were magnificent, “Then it explains the direct retributions.” As we just said, [the Bodhisattvas’] direct retribution was to expound the Dharma. In those lands, everyone was magnificent; they wore the clothing of patience and gentleness, and they all engaged in Bodhisattva-practices. The Dharma they taught was the wondrous Dharma. “In the four cardinal and intermediate directions, above and below, each direction had Buddha-lands as numerous as the sands of 500 trillion nayutas of Ganges Rivers” Just as it was in the east, above and below and in the four cardinal and the four intermediate directions, in the nine other directions, it was this way too. In all these lands as numerous as the sands of five trillion nayutas of Ganges Rivers, in every place, there were still all these infinite lands.

First this explains the circumstantial retributions of magnificence,” then it explains His direct retributions of expounding the Dharma. The four cardinal directions, four intermediate directions, above and below each had Buddhas in lands as numerous as the sands of 500 trillion nayutas of Ganges Rivers.

“Each Buddha had countless trillions, infinite numbers of Bodhisattvas,” As long as a Buddha appears in the world, naturally He teaches and transforms countless trillions of Bodhisattvas. There were countless Bodhisattvas in those lands. This is how the Dharma is continually passed on. “The Buddha [there] were infinite and Their followers [there] were infinite” Their followers are the many to whom They give the Dharma. These are Their countless followers. There were leaders and others accompanying them. There were the leaders, and there were the followers. “Countless groups of leaders and followers.” There were so many groups of people like that, bringing more and more people. They “expound the Dharma for the assembly.” There were many groups there that continually expounded the Dharma, spreading the Dharma very widely. “This radiant appearance illuminated everything. Because of this radiance, the assembly could see without obstruction.”

For each Buddha, there were countless trillions of Bodhisattvas. Because the lands were infinite, the Buddhas were infinite and Their followers were infinite. Countless groups of leaders and followers expounded the Dharma for the sake of the assembly. Wherever the light shone, because of its radiance, the assembly could see without obstruction.

When the great assembly saw the radiance, they no longer had any obstructions. They were unobstructed in listening to the Dharma; the radiant light was also unobstructed. This is like the light of the sun, which shines unobstructed. This is just like the Dharma. Sounds are also broadcast unobstructed, as long as the frequency matches; we must tune in with our mind. When our mind is tuned into the Dharma, it will automatically reach us unobstructed. The mind’s afflictions obstruct the Dharma. When the Dharma is obstructed, it is like something is blocking the sunlight. It cannot come through. When it comes to our nature of True Suchness, if it is blocked by ignorance and afflictions, it cannot shine through. So, we should work hard to first eliminate ignorance and afflictions. Without the Dharma, we cannot eliminate them. With the Dharma, by using the Dharma, we can get rid of our afflictions one by one. Only then will the light of the Dharma reach our nature of True Suchness. As soon as we thoroughly understand, we will no longer have any afflictions.

The sutra passage below again says, “At that time, each of the Buddhas of the ten directions said to all His Bodhisattvas,’Good men, now I must go to the Saha World, where the Sakyamuni Buddha is, and make offerings to Many Treasure Tathagata’s stupa of treasures.”’

When the radiant light shone at that time, each Buddha in the ten directions simultaneously said to all of the Bodhisattvas They led, “I must now go to the Saha World to make offerings in the place where Sakyamuni Buddha is, and also make offerings to Many Treasure Buddha’s stupa.” It was because of the radiance that They all came. “The Buddhas of the ten directions” each spoke to the Bodhisattvas in Their assembly.

“Good men. Now I must go to the Saha World, where Sakyamuni Buddha is.” So, “Now that the light illuminated those lands, They understood His intent, thus They came there.”

Seeing the radiance, they knew the Buddha’s intent. Thus, They all came naturally. Their minds were tuned to the Buddha’s mind. This is why They came. “And also make offerings to Many Treasure Tathagata’s stupa of treasures” means They were not just responding to the radiance; They came because They knew the Buddha’s intent and also to make offerings to Many Treasure Buddha in His stupa. The present Buddhas in Their realms came to make offerings to this ancient Buddha from eons in the past. [This respect] was mutual. This is like in our time, in a class at school, if we hear there is a professor from elsewhere invited to our school to lecture, then many students [will all listen]. Even those in other disciplines and other classes will all come together to listen to the professor who comes to lecture from afar. The principle here is the same. This is how we treat each other nowadays. Those Buddhas represent the Dharma. The manifestations of the Buddha’s Dharmakaya represent how all teachings in the universe have been brought together. This is how it has always been; the present and past are the same. The principles are always like this; they [remain] the same. So, They “wanted to make offerings to the stupa of Many Treasures Buddha” to respect the principles which came down from ancient times.

And now? Now, He was gathering the principles and bringing them together. He brought the Dharma together. ”They also wanted to make offerings to the stupa of Many Treasures Buddha.” This is explaining, how all Buddhas of the ten directions responded and came. They responded to the radiant light and all came together. “The Buddhas told their assemblies to come along." This means they were “one and the same.” When this Buddha’s radiance shone forth, all the Buddhas gathered together. This shows those They were one and the same. The present Sakyamuni Buddha never moved from His assembly at Vulture Peak, but from between His eyes, He emitted light. When this Buddha’s radiant light shone, all Buddhas in the ten directions [came together]. [This is a metaphor for] how the principles deep in His heart [all came together]. His true principles, the wisdom of all Dharma, wisdom of all paths and all-encompassing wisdom all came together. So, it says, “All Buddhas are one and the same. Originally, there is no self or other.” There is no division between me and you. The principles are the same for all of us, for him and you and me. The principles realized by Sakyamuni Buddha and the principles realized by Many Treasure Buddha are always the same; they are one. The ancient Buddha was like this, and the present Buddha is also like this. This Buddha is like this, and that Buddha is also like this. We all listen to the same principles. The principles do not change; it is our viewpoints and thinking that change. The principles remain forever the same. So, “Originally, there is no self or other.” The principles have always been like this. So, “By telling Their assemblies to come along, They responded provisionally according to capabilities."

The Buddhas told Their assemblies to come along: All Buddhas are one and the same. Originally, there is no self or other. By telling Their assemblies to come along, They responded provisionally according to capabilities.

When the radiance illuminated, everyone experienced it together. This shows They were “one.” The principles are the same. No matter how far, this shows that anything and everything in the universe ultimately returns to one principle. In the physical world this refers to “formation, existence, decay and disappearance." This is a kind of principle, formation, existence, decay and disappearance. In regards to human physiology, we refer to it as “birth, aging, illness and death” [We will also] ultimately disappear. As for the thoughts in our minds, they “arise, abide, change and cease.” They also disappear. The principle is the same. Whether speaking of emptiness, death or cessation, everything disappears. The principle is always the same; it is just the name we use that is different. So, it is one and the same; there is no self or other. This beam of light comprises so many principles. This is why They “came.” The principles all returned and became one with the universe. These true principles were summoned by the radiant light. They “told their assemblies to come along.” So, it was in this way that so many of Them all came together. “They responded provisionally according to their capabilities.” When it came to sentient beings’ capabilities, the Buddha taught the Dharma for over 40 years, first the provisional then later the true. Whether expounding emptiness or existence, they all return to [this same principle]. So, we must be mindful. The principle originally is one; it is just that sentient beings complicated it. Everything is in fact quite simple; it is just that, in our human societies, our minds have become complicated, making everything else more complicated also. We should now return to simplicity, which means we should brush away all ignorance. Let us always be mindful!

(Source: Da Ai TV – Wisdom at Dawn program – Explanation by Master Chen-Yen)
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20180129《靜思妙蓮華》 光相所照 莊嚴說法 (第1272集) (法華經•見寶塔品第十一)
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