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 20180521《靜思妙蓮華》明微妙法 泯十界相 (第1352集) (法華經·提婆達多品第十二)

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20180521《靜思妙蓮華》明微妙法 泯十界相 (第1352集) (法華經·提婆達多品第十二) Empty
發表主題: 20180521《靜思妙蓮華》明微妙法 泯十界相 (第1352集) (法華經·提婆達多品第十二)   20180521《靜思妙蓮華》明微妙法 泯十界相 (第1352集) (法華經·提婆達多品第十二) Empty周日 五月 20, 2018 8:26 pm

20180521《靜思妙蓮華》明微妙法 泯十界相 (第1352集) (法華經·提婆達多品第十二)

⊙雖則泯十界相,不妨十界宛然,以不思議妙智,遍照十方宛然。明法甚深微妙,身心清淨圓滿,因核果海,果徹因源,罪福不失。
⊙又聞修證己得成佛道度眾生,引佛證見覺性,能至菩提以消智積菩薩之疑。龍女闡大乘法,常時演說妙法,即往南方成佛。
⊙「天人所戴仰,龍神咸恭敬,一切眾生類,無不宗奉者。」《法華經提婆達多品第十二》
⊙「又聞成菩提,唯佛當證知。我闡大乘教,度脫苦眾生。」《法華經提婆達多品第十二》
⊙「時舍利弗語龍女言:汝謂不久得無上道,是事難信。」《法華經提婆達多品第十二》
⊙時舍利弗語龍女言:會中舍利弗,因見文殊告智積曰,龍女八歲,慈悲和雅。能至菩提,所以亦提疑問。
⊙汝謂不久得無上道,是事難信:即前文,於剎那頃發菩提心,故言不久得無上道。此實難信。
⊙汝謂下,總舉難端,述彼所說,述說自己所疑,意謂我等秉丈夫之相,負荷拔俗稱雄之秀,終年幸得聞此法。成道猶待多劫,況爾異類女質,視佛果若此之易,恐大言傷實,取信良難。
⊙「所以者何?女身垢穢,非是法器,云何能得無上菩提?」《法華經提婆達多品第十二》
⊙所以者何:釋其所以不信之意,說明難信之因由。一者、穢軀難信;二者、無因難信;三者、有障難信。
⊙女身垢穢,非是法器:方便教中,說諸女人有五種障,不得成佛,所以執此而為難端。在人道中之女身,本為罪業果報之相,不堪為勝妙大乘法所依,故名非是法器。
⊙云何能得無上菩提:不信能成。四弘誓願之一,證無上菩提之誓願。

【證嚴上人開示】
雖則泯十界相,不妨十界宛然,以不思議妙智,遍照十方宛然。明法甚深微妙,身心清淨圓滿,因核果海,果徹因源,罪福不失。

雖則泯十界相
不妨十界宛然
以不思議妙智
遍照十方宛然
明法甚深微妙
身心清淨圓滿
因核果海
果徹因源罪福不失

用心啊!多了解!雖然我們前面所說,龍王女來讚歎釋迦佛,佛陀應該都能夠了解,我們修行的過程,在十法界中皆有佛性,只是「六凡」眾生煩惱重重,污染還無法去除,但是也有發大心、立大願,願意在六道中,「六道四生」裡去廣度眾生。釋迦佛也是這樣,累生世,一個記憶就是不忘求妙法,沒有放棄救度眾生的心念。他要求妙法的心切,生生世世,「上求佛道,下化眾生」,入人群,入眾生道,這就是佛陀在《本生經》裡面,也常常這樣譬喻。龍女,雖然她是在六凡的裡面,在畜生道。

智積菩薩所看的,龍王女是在畜生道之中,所以哪有辦法是修行的道器呢?所以,她聽文殊菩薩說,海龍宮在教化的過程,有龍王女,年始八歲,聽法很快,利根、聰慧,聽法很快她就能吸收,能夠成覺悟。智積菩薩不相信,所以他還是要文殊菩薩,再說清楚。這時間內,龍女還沒等文殊菩薩回答,龍女她就出現了,從海龍宮乘寶蓮花,很快的時間,忽然間,很快速就出現在靈山會上。開始就向佛禮拜,用偈文讚歎釋迦佛,應該很清楚「罪福相」,意思就是說,造善、造惡,人人本具佛性,原來就有真如本性。只是我們眾生就是這樣懵懂,在一念間,無始以來,不斷一直造作無明煩惱。

但是,他的真如本性還是存在,真正發心立願,在人群中,在眾生群中,在付出,度眾生,還是很多啊!佛自證知,這是龍女這樣講。因為佛,本身也是這樣(經歷)過,不論是去過畜生道,不論是到地獄道。所現的身形,就是在畜生道的身形;地獄道,就是受罪苦難的身形;在人間,有時候也是在苦難中的過程,在度眾生。相信佛在這個罪福相,很清楚,這就是菩薩所度化的道路,佛應該很清楚。是啊,佛應該很清楚,而且佛己超越九界,六凡四聖,「六凡」,前面講過了,天、人、地獄、餓鬼、畜生、阿修羅道,這就是「六凡」。「四聖」,聲聞、緣覺、菩薩、佛,這就是修行的次序。「聲聞」就是還在聽法,將聲,聞入耳中,而來了解佛法;在「緣覺」,「緣覺」就是法聽來,入心了解,在外面所見的境界,不用經過了佛再解釋,他就能夠體悟到,這是緣境界而了解,這就是「緣覺」。不過他還是獨善其身,道理都知道,卻不願意入人群,這叫做「緣覺」。

「菩薩」,一方面聽法、求法,境界清楚,但是他就是開始就是發願,入人群在度眾生。一邊度眾生,沒有棄捨眾生,為了度眾生而來求佛道,所以他是「菩薩」,永遠不棄眾生。他上求下化,菩薩雖然還有微塵,這種塵沙,還有少分的煩惱,還沒完全突破,這樣所以還沒有成等正覺,這還是在菩薩(階段)。就如智積菩薩一樣,他是隨著多寶佛而來,多寶佛有某種因緣,入滅以前都還未講過《法華經》,智積菩薩是隨在多寶佛的身邊,與多寶佛同時到靈山會來,可見智積菩薩,還有微分不解的煩惱,還有塵沙微分的煩惱,和文殊菩薩就不同了。文殊菩薩是娑婆世界,助佛度化的菩薩,智積菩薩不是,所以,佛陀留著智積菩薩,「且待須臾」,此土有文殊菩薩,將要到了,你們能互相見面。就是希望在這個時間,一位還未完全覺悟的菩薩,還有微分煩惱的菩薩,一位是已經超越等覺的菩薩,希望多寶佛塔和多寶佛,也為聽法來,暫待一下,他文殊菩薩一來,就有很徹底的法,可以更明瞭,更清楚。

所以因為有這兩尊菩薩在對答,還沒很清楚,微分的煩惱,還沒有完全除,智積菩薩還有疑,釋迦佛不希望他還存著疑,而離開這個道場,所以故意將他留下。文殊、智積對唱,時間分秒不空過,文殊菩薩還未回答,瞬間,龍女出現了,這樣這個態度來表達恭敬,用偈文讚歎釋迦牟尼佛,同時,開門見山,釋迦佛應該了解罪福相。是啊,釋迦佛已經是「泯十界相」。泯滅,「泯」就是滅了,沒有十界的形象,因為自覺悟那一刻,他就「大地眾生,皆有如來智性」,大地眾生都能夠成佛。人人本具佛性,從佛陀覺悟那一刻,就已經十界平等了,所以他能了解罪福相,所以泯滅了十界相,沒有什麼好分別。因為真如,性是平等。我們今生是人,來生呢?是什麼形,不知道。這十界的裡面,「六凡」也是變化無窮。這就像看畜生界,也有很聰明、有智慧。昨天德懋(精舍常住師父)給我一個網路上,就是有人在樹林裡面,設那個陷阱,他用夾子,就是上面放著兩條香腸,那個夾的東西就馬上把它夾住,這是獵物的一個陷阱。

這隻狗看到、聞到香腸,就是香腸在那裡,想要去咬它,卻是牠在那個地方看很久,前後看,看一看,牠感覺這就是有陷阱,有人設計,很聰明,牠就去咬一塊木柴,把那一塊木柴咬住,先將它丟下去,讓夾子這樣動了,夾起來,一塊香腸跳出來外面,這樣想要去咬這一塊香腸。卻是,忽然間看到一隻山豬,這隻山豬在那裡,又有一隻小山豬,小山豬好像肚子很餓,這隻母山豬也是餓啊,牠站在那裡這樣遠遠看,想,想一下子,牠就這樣去咬著香腸,咬到山豬的面前,將它放著,退到後面,又退好幾步來,看這隻山豬會去咬香腸嗎?這樣站在那裡對看。

這隻山豬也不是,牠咬來香腸,牠就趕緊去搶來吃,也沒有,也是很客氣。所以,一隻山豬,一隻狗,這樣在那面前,互相站不遠,在那裡對看那條香腸。這是一段,現在都流行,這樣一直傳。我看到的,我的感想,這是在畜生道裡面,也是菩薩入畜生道,在救度眾生啊,這隻狗,牠雖然不是和牠(豬)同類,是狗的形相,但是同樣在畜生道裡。畜生道中也有貧富貴賤的動物,「貧」像這樣的山豬,母和子,在那裡肚子飢餓難耐;「富」的,那些狗、貓,現在豬也是變作寵物,在富貴人家,幫牠建房子建得很美,幫牠把床鋪準備得很好,用很好吃的東西給牠吃,這就是富。貧、富、貴、賤,畜生道也同樣有,人道也是這樣。你們想,眾生不是平等嗎?人道中,也有畜生道,這種倫理道德很腐敗的人,也有「富中之貧」,為富不仁的人。但是,人中,也有「貧中之富」的人,「富中之富」,這就是在人間。

也是有遍布在六道,畜生道,也有遍布六道的畜生道。所以說起來,「十界」,應該超越的人,那就是平等了,沒有什麼好分別,因為真如性是平等,與佛也是平等,這就是超越境界的人看的。所以「不妨十界宛然」。「十界」裡面,畜生道也在修行,畜生道也有菩薩行,人看得到的,這就是「宛然」。儘管超越了「十界」,卻是還是在「六道」的裡面。

所以,「以不思議妙智,遍照十方宛然」。這就是超越的智慧,超越的智慧,能夠這樣,十界,還是一樣,在佛的境界來看。不過,佛陀是尊重,對這些畜生類,一概列入能夠成佛,哪怕是罪惡,十惡不赦、墮落地獄,同樣也是能成佛,所以這是不思議的妙智,超越了。但是,無奈的人間,還是在這個十法界之中,同樣在「四聖六道」,哪怕是菩薩道,還有微分煩惱未盡,何況我們凡夫呢!何況緣覺,他雖然了解道理,但是不願意入人群度眾生。何況是懵懂的凡夫,那更不用講了。這就是十界的眾生宛然,就是還是這樣。「明法甚深微妙,身心清淨圓滿」。龍女,她道理已經很透徹、很明瞭、很了解了,所了解的佛法,已經是微妙,甚深微妙的道理。就在這樣讚佛這段文,就能夠了解,龍女也是法超越了,甚深微妙,尤其是「身心清淨圓滿」。雖然在畜生道,她也是在修行啊。

所以「因核果海,果徹因源,罪福不失」。道理,「因」,一個「因」,她就能夠發揮,很多的「果」出來。那棵樹,就是只有一粒種子而已,因緣會合了,這棵樹纍纍的種子,就會不斷不斷地產生,年年循環,一直有這樣的種子生出來。同樣我們人一生中,我們若願意造福人群,雖然一生不長,不過,我們也能夠做很多善的因,也能夠無限的果報,這樣因核,裡面的種子的種,一代一代,一直不斷不斷這樣衍生下去。何況龍女!她的過去生,到底有多少生?全都一直在「十界」裡面,「九界」的裡面,「六道」的裡面,「四生」的裡面,來來回回。現在,雖然今生是在海龍宮,為龍王女,但是,過去就是「因」,也是一樣,這樣走過。佛陀現在成佛,過去他的《本生經》,也有很多的因緣,所以「因核果海」,結果就很多。

所以,「果徹因源」。「果」透徹了,要追究到「因」的源頭;「因」的源頭,雖然稍微一點點,卻是成「果」起來,就是這麼大。釋迦佛也是這樣累生累世,塵點劫這樣不斷累積。「粒米成籮,滴水成河」,這也是「因核果海」。我們所造作的,我們若造罪業,那麼一輩子所造的,可能要好幾世來報,因為累世都是無明,不斷不斷造作無明,就是這樣不斷,罪業一直延續下去。造福,我們若有那念心,記憶著,來生來世還是求妙法,還是不離人群度眾生,若這樣,我們也可以累生不斷累積下來。所以「因核果海,果徹因源,罪福不失」,我們要很清楚。

又聞修證
己得成佛道度眾生
引佛證見覺性
能至菩提
以消智積菩薩之疑
龍女闡大乘法
常時演說妙法
即往南方成佛

所以說,「又聞修證,已得成佛道度眾生」。這是龍女已經了解了,也是不斷在付出,也是聽聞不少成佛之道,也同樣入人群度眾生。所以「引佛證見覺性」,這是佛已經證見了覺性,人人本具佛性,真如覺性。所以「至菩提,以消智積菩薩之疑」,就是因為她已經有這樣的累積,所以來到佛的面前,就是請佛來見證,見證一切眾生皆有如來智性,見證龍女也已經聽很多法,也已經入人群度眾生,用這樣來消除智積菩薩的疑問,這段文就是要能讓智積菩薩解疑。

所以龍女她就自己這樣說:「我闡大乘法,常時演說妙法」。她聽聞佛法,入心了解,入人群度眾生,也是用大乘法,同樣演說大乘妙法,這是龍女也是這樣做。就是「即往南方成佛」,未來她的因緣就是在南方成佛。這段文,佛陀要讓智積了解,也要讓我們了解,不要在眾生的形態上起分別相,這就是要泯滅十界相,這就是要智慧真正很超越。

所以,前面的文就這樣說:「天人所戴仰」,這是龍女在讚歎佛,「龍神咸恭敬,一切眾生類,無不宗奉者。」

天人所戴仰
龍神咸恭敬
一切眾生類
無不宗奉者
《法華經提婆達多品第十二》

這在讚歎佛陀,人天全都恭敬,連天龍,連大海中的眾生也全都很恭敬。「又聞成菩提,唯佛當證知。我闡大乘教,度脫苦眾生」。

又聞成菩提
唯佛當證知
我闡大乘教
度脫苦眾生
《法華經提婆達多品第十二》

聽佛陀能來證明我,很快就能成菩提,因為唯有佛您能為我證明,唯有佛您能了解我,因為我還有不斷長久的時間,都是在「闡揚大乘教,度脫苦眾生」。這是龍女向佛陀,用偈文讚歎佛陀,也表達自己,不是今生此世在龍王宮,生生世世,她同樣在六道,同樣在九界裡面,她也是這樣發菩薩心,入人群度眾生。

下面這段文,接下來再說:「時舍利弗語龍女言:汝謂不久得無上道,是事難信。」

時舍利弗
語龍女言
汝謂不久
得無上道
是事難信
《法華經提婆達多品第十二》

前面智積菩薩才不相信,龍女出現讚歎佛,就是消除智積的疑問,智積沒有話說了。但是現在舍利弗又開始提疑問,這回舍利弗,就直接向龍女講話。

時舍利弗
語龍女言:
會中舍利弗
因見文殊告智積曰
龍女八歲
慈悲和雅
能至菩提
所以亦提疑問

所以說「會中舍利弗,因見文殊告智積曰,龍女八歲,慈悲和雅。能至菩提,所以亦提疑問」。因為他也在會中聽,聽到文殊菩薩,向智積菩薩這樣說,說她已經「慈悲和雅」,才八歲而已,慈悲和雅,又是「能至菩提」,已經得到菩提道,他不太相信。雖然她出來向佛陀求證明,但是舍利弗還是要再表達他有懷疑。這就是大乘人,就是菩薩,差不多了解了;小乘人,雖然在人間,智慧第一的舍利弗,但是他還在聲聞,雖然得到佛陀為他授證,未來成佛,不過他還沒有成佛,只是佛陀為他授記,未來在無量劫之後,好好修行才能夠成佛,所以他這個疑問還在。

汝謂不久得無上道
是事難信:
即前文
於剎那頃發菩提心
故言不久得無上道
此實難信

所以他就直接問,「汝謂不久得無上道」。這事情很難相信,不只是你自己說,文殊菩薩也這樣說,這實在是讓人很難以相信。這是因為龍女,「於剎那傾發菩提心,言不久得無上道」。因為文殊菩薩說,他一講,她就能了解,這是文殊菩薩這樣講。哪有這樣,馬上聽,很快的,剎那頃,就能夠發菩提心,怎麼這麼快就相信呢?才沒有多久妳就能成道呢?這實在是難信。舍利弗,他修行也好幾世了,而且佛陀的道場中,他是智慧第一,好幾十年了,也是這樣聽佛這麼久,他都沒有辦法發菩提心;為何龍女在海龍宮,文殊菩薩去和她講話,這樣剎那頃就能夠接受,發菩提心。他用他自己來測量龍女,「龍女怎麼能這樣聽到就發菩提心,我聽那麼久,我都沒辦法發大心,妳怎麼有辦法?」所以這是舍利弗他提出。

汝謂下
總舉難端
述彼所說
述說自己所疑
意謂我等
秉丈夫之相
負荷拔俗稱雄之秀
終年幸得聞此法
成道猶待多劫
況爾異類女質
視佛果若此之易
恐大言傷實
取信良難

所以,意思,「總舉難」,困難,就是舍利弗所講的,「彼所說」,龍女這樣就能成佛了,所以「述說自己所疑」,這是舍利弗自己所疑的。他意思就是說,「我等」,就是舍利弗,他感覺:我是大丈夫相,我也能修行到人人讚歎,我是智慧第一,我是在佛的弟子中,是一位「拔俗稱雄之秀」,意思就是說我很優秀,我又是男子漢的身體,我也很優秀,我終年雖然幸得,我這樣今生此世,雖然我也是已經聽到佛陀說法,聽那麼久了。「終年幸得聞此法」,我也已經聽佛講這個妙法,講很久了,「成道猶待多劫」。我要成道,佛陀為我授記,還要等好幾劫,還要等無量數劫,妳怎麼能這麼快就成菩提?我堂堂大丈夫,我是這麼優秀,我也是這樣聽法,我為何要等那麼久,妳怎麼這麼快呢?這是舍利弗,覺得為什麼,我還和妳差別那麼多呢?

所以「況爾異類女質」,妳是異類,這就是分別心,妳不是人類,妳是在海底,妳是畜生類,何況妳又是「女質」。所以,「視佛果若此之易」,妳覺得成佛這麼簡單嗎?「恐大言傷實」,妳的話會不會說得太快?妳這樣馬上說出來,會不會太說大話?這樣,妳傷了實,不實的,不真實的事情,妳這樣講出來。所以「取信良難」,這樣要讓人相信很困難。妳不是人類,尤其是女人的身,為什麼呢?

下面的文就說:「所以者何?女身垢穢,非是法器,云何能得無上菩提?」

所以者何
女身垢穢
非是法器
云何能得無上菩提
《法華經提婆達多品第十二》

女人的身體真的是垢穢,不是法器,成佛哪有辦法這麼快呢?這就是舍利弗,在和智積菩薩一樣,龍種,是驕傲,非載道器,前面也說過,但是舍利弗同樣有這樣的疑問,所以表示他不相信的原因,講明了難信的因由。

所以者何:
釋其所以不信之意
說明難信之因由
一者、穢軀難信
二者、無因難信
三者、有障難信

舍利弗他是如何不信、難信?「一者、穢軀難信」。女人的身體垢穢,不乾淨,所以不相信她能這麼快就成佛。「二者、無因難信」,沒辦法有什麼樣的因,說出了事實,什麼樣的因,種什麼因,她現在能得什麼果。在忽然間,這麼快,剎那出現,這麼快就說能成佛,所以「無因難信」。「三者、有障難信」,第三,女人身,加上畜生的身,這重重的障礙,所以他不相信,無法相信。所以「女身垢穢,非是法器」,因為女人的身垢穢,不是法器。

女身垢穢
非是法器:
方便教中
說諸女人有五種障
不得成佛
所以執此而為難端
在人道中之女身
本為罪業果報之相
不堪為
勝妙大乘法所依
故名非是法器

這是在方便教裡面,「說諸女人有五種障,不得成佛,所以執此而為難端」。這就是他疑的開端,因為女人有五種的障礙,所以不得成佛,所以「在人道中之女身,本為罪業果報之相」。女人在人類中就有很多業,什麼「三從四德」,小時候要從父母,長大嫁人要從夫,生孩子之後要從子,一生都要從人從人,這種「三從四德」,這就已經對女人有很大的障礙了。何況女人的心態和一般不同,這後面有機會會講。「本為罪業果報之相」,女人很多心理狀態,生理狀態,還有禮教的狀態等等。「不堪為勝妙大乘法所依」,就是因為妳有種種的障礙,就不堪,堪不得大乘法,勝妙的大乘所依靠。妳無法去弘揚佛法,妳無法去廣度眾生,妳無法去體解這麼多的法,就是有種種的障礙,妳沒有辦法,所以「非法器」,不是載道器。

「云何能得無上菩提」,既然身非載道器,你要如何成菩提呢?這就是不信,無法相信。

云何能得
無上菩提:
不信能成
四弘誓願之一
證無上菩提之誓願

所以一定無法去成就,因為要成菩提,必定要四弘誓,四弘誓要行,四弘誓願,是證無上菩提的誓願,才有辦法。這就是舍利弗對龍女說,很快就能成佛,他所抱的懷疑。他的開端,就是女人有很多的障礙,女人有很多的心理狀態等等,很多不是他想要做就做得到的,這是很困難的事情。

舉一個例子,「四弘誓願」,「眾生無邊誓願度」,女人的心態就是「顧夫、顧子、顧一口鍋」,這我們常常聽到,這就是女人的心態,她無法像大丈夫,他可以四海皆兄弟,大丈夫男子漢,四海皆兄弟,光是這兩句話拿來比較,就差很多。總而言之,要如何能做到四弘誓願之一,「眾生無邊誓願度」呢?何況說,煩惱的事情,女人特別多,這種要如何能「煩惱無盡誓願斷」,要怎麼有辦法斷煩惱呢?沒辦法。「法門無量誓願學」,法門這麼大,妳難道還有辦法?「佛道無上誓願成」,這妳們有辦法嗎?光是這一項,妳就沒有辦法,所以要如何能成無上菩提?

這就是我們要用心去體會,男女之間的差別是差在哪裡,差在向來在禮教,向來女人的心態,生理、心理全都有障礙;在人間的禮教就是這樣,自古以來,就是有很多很多障礙。所以我們要去體會,要體會裡面的道理,當然還要分析的很多,我們要很用心去了解。智積菩薩無法相信,舍利弗更再疑慮重重,所疑問的還很多,智積菩薩只是感覺身非載道器,龍種這種驕傲,尤其是畜生類,身非載道器,這麼簡單,但是舍利弗的疑又更多。所以我們要了解,聖人、凡夫的階層,這個疑念,疑問,就是愈是了解法,疑念愈少;還沒有透徹了解,煩惱無明愈重,疑問愈多。

所以我們要如何,好好培養我們的心態,是非分得很清楚,該信的要堅定信;不該接受的迷,我們要即刻斷除,這樣煩惱無明不會來染心,這個信,我們要深刻信仰。若這樣,其實,十界同等,九界全都消泯掉,所以我們要時時多用心!


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Explanations by Master Cheng-Yan
Subject: Eliminating the Appearances of the Ten Realms (明微妙法 泯十界相)
Date: May.21.2018

“Though He has eliminated the appearances of the Ten Realms, He still sees the Ten Realms clearly. He uses His incredible, wondrous wisdom to clearly illuminate the Ten Realms. [The dragon girl] understood the extremely profound, subtle and wondrous Dharma. Her body and mind were clear, pure and perfect. A seed gives rise to an ocean of fruits. By penetrating the fruit, we see the source of the seed; transgressions and blessings do not disappear.”

We must be mindful! We must seek to understand this better. We discussed earlier about how the dragon girl came and praised Sakyamuni Buddha. The Buddha was fully capable of understanding this. In our course of spiritual practice in the Ten Dharma-realms, all beings have the Buddha-nature; it is just that sentient beings in the Six Unenlightened Realms are full of afflictions and are still unable to eliminate their defilements. However, there are still people who form great aspirations and make great vows; they are willing to come to the Six Realms and widely transform sentient beings throughout the Six Realms and Four Forms of Birth. Sakyamuni Buddha was also like this. Lifetime after lifetime, He never forgot to seek the wondrous Dharma and never abandoned His aspiration to save and transform sentient beings. He eagerly sought the wondrous Dharma throughout lifetime after lifetime. He “sought the path to Buddhahood and transformed sentient beings.” He went among people, among the realms of sentient beings.

In the Jataka Sutra, the Buddha also often used these kinds of analogies. As for the dragon girl, she was actually in the Six Unenlightened Realms, in the animal realm. Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva saw that the dragon girl was in the animal realm. So, [he thought], “How could [her body] possibly be a vehicle for spiritual cultivation?” He heard Manjusri Bodhisattva speak about his work of teaching and transforming the sentient beings of the dragon palace in the ocean. The dragon king’s daughter, who had just turned eight years old, was quick to [understand] the Dharma she heard. She was intelligent, with sharp capabilities. She listened to the Dharma and was able to absorb it very quickly. She was capable of attaining awakening. Wisdom Accumulated could not believe this. He still wanted Manjusri Bodhisattva to explain things even more clearly. At that time, without waiting for Manjusri Bodhisattva’s reply, the dragon girl appeared. All of a sudden, she appeared at the Vulture Peak Assembly and began prostrating to the Buddha. In verse, she praised Sakyamuni Buddha for understanding very clearly “the marks of transgressions and blessings.” This means whether we create good or evil [karma], we all intrinsically possess the Buddha-nature; we have always had the nature of True Suchness. It is just that we sentient beings are ignorant; it all depends on this one thought. Since Beginningless Time, we have continued to create ignorance and afflictions. But our nature of True Suchness is still there. As for those who truly form aspirations, make vows and go among sentient beings to serve and transform them, there are still many people like this! The Buddha Himself will know and testify to this; this is what the dragon girl said. This is because the Buddha had also experienced these things Himself, having gone to the animal realm and to the hell realm. He manifested in the appearance of [an animal] in the animal realm. In the hell realm, His appearance was one of receiving torment and suffering for His transgressions. In the human realm, where He also endured hardships at times, He transformed sentient beings. She had faith that the Buddha clearly understood “the marks of transgressions and blessings.” This is the path that Bodhisattvas take to transform [sentient beings], so the Buddha understood this very clearly. Yes, the Buddha knows this very well. Moreover, the Buddha had already transcended the nine realms. There are the Six Unenlightened Realms and the Four Noble Realms. We have already talked about the Six Unenlightened Realms before, which are the heaven, human, hell, hungry ghost, animal and asura realms. These are the Six Unenlightened Realms. The Four Noble Realms are the realms of Hearers, Solitary Realizers, Bodhisattvas and Buddhas. This is the sequence of spiritual cultivation. Hearers are still listening to the Dharma. They listen to [the Buddha-Dharma] and they come to understand it. As for Solitary Realizers, they have already listened to the Dharma, taken it to heart and comprehended it. When they see things in the external world, without needing the Buddha’s explanations, they are also to comprehend them. They connect to the external conditions and understand them. These are the Solitary Realizers. However, they only seek to awaken themselves. They understand all the principles, but they are unwilling to go among people. They are known as Solitary Realizers. Bodhisattvas listen to and seek out the Dharma and clearly understand the external world, but they also begin to make vows to go among people to transform sentient beings. They also transform sentient beings. They do not abandon sentient beings. They seek the path to Buddhahood in order to transform sentient beings. So, they are Bodhisattvas who will never abandon sentient begins. They seek the Dharma and transform sentient beings. However, Bodhisattvas still have their dust-like [afflictions]; they still have a small amount of afflictions. They have yet to completely surmount them, so they have yet to attain perfect enlightenment. They are still [at the stage] of Bodhisattvas. This is just like Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva, who came accompanying Many Treasure Buddha. Due to certain karmic conditions, before entering Parinirvana, Many Treasures Buddha had not taught the Lotus Sutra, Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva accompanied Many Treasures Buddha and arrived at the Vulture Peak Assembly at the same time as Him. Evidently, Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva still had a small amount of unresolved afflictions. He still had some dust-like afflictions. He was different from Manjusri Bodhisattva. Manjusri Bodhisattva was in the Saha World as a Bodhisattva there to help the Buddha transform [sentient beings]. Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva was not. So, the Buddha asked Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva to stay “Wait a little while. This Manjusri Bodhisattva will come to this place and you will be able to meet one another.” [The Buddha] hoped that, during this time, the Bodhisattva who was not yet fully awakened and still had some slight afflictions [could meet] this Bodhisattva who had already transcended [his afflictions] and attained awakening. [The Buddha] hoped that Many Treasures Buddha in His stupa of treasures, who had come to hear the Dharma, would stay for a little while longer. Once Manjusri Bodhisattva came, there would be a very thorough teaching that would be even clearer and easier to understand, for there would be a dialogue between these two Bodhisattvas. [Wisdom Accumulated] was still not very clear; he still had slight afflictions that he had yet to completely eliminate. Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva still had doubts, so Sakyamuni Buddha did not want him to leave the Dharma-assembly with these lingering doubts. So, [the Buddha] deliberately had him say Manjusri and Wisdom Accumulated began to engage in conversation. They did not waste a second of time. But before Manjusri Bodhisattva could reply, the dragon girl suddenly appeared. She expressed here respect through her conduct and praised Sakyamuni Buddha through verse. At the same time, [she helped them] get straight to the point. Sakyamuni Buddha must have understood the makes of transgressions and blessings.

Indeed, Sakyamuni Buddha had already “eliminated the appearances of the Ten Realms”. To “eliminate” means they were extinguished. He no longer [saw] appearances of the Ten Realms, because, in the moment of His enlightenment, He realized that “all beings possess the Tathagata’s nature of wisdom”. All sentient beings in the world are able to attain Buddhahood. We all intrinsically possess the Buddha-nature. From the moment the Buddha attained enlightenment, He knew that all Ten Realms were equal. So, He understood the marks of transgressions and blessings and could thus eliminate the appearances of the Ten Realms. There is nothing to discriminate between, for the nature of True Suchness is equal in all. We may be humans in this lifetime, but what about in our next life? We do not know what appearance we will have. Wining the Ten Realms, within the Six Unenlightened Realms [alone], there are limitless variations. This is just like how, within the animal realm, there are also very smart and wise [animals].

Yesterday, De Mao sent me a short video that someone posted on the internet. Someone set a trap in the forest. He placed two sausages in a sparing-trap. All you had to do was bump that spot and it would immediately clamp shut. This was a trap used for hunting. A dog saw [the trap] and smelled sausage, the sausage there [in the trap]. He wanted to bite into it, but he sat there, looking at it for a long time. He looked around a bit. He suspected that it was a trap someone had set up. He was very smart. He picked up a stick in his mouth. Holding the stick in his mouth, he dropped it in and sprung the trap, and a piece of sausage popped out. He wanted to eat the sausage, but suddenly, a wild boar appeared. A wild boar was there with another, smaller boar. The small boar seemed very hungry, and mother boar was also hungry. [The dog] stood there and watched from afar, considering [his options]. He bit down on the sausage and took it over to the boar. He set the sausage down and backed away, taking several steps back. Would the boar know to eat the sausage? [The dog] stood there and watched, but the boar did not just after [the dog] brought it over. She was also very polite. So, the wild boar and the dog stood there, not far apart from each other, both looking at the sausage. This short video is very popular right now and keeps getting shared. I saw this and thought, “They must also be Bodhisattvas who have entered the animal realm to save and transform sentient beings.” This dog was not of the same species as the boar. He had the appearance of a dog, but they were both in the animal realms. The animal realm also has poor and blessed animals. The “poor” animals are like that wild boar. The mother boar and her baby were unbearably hungry. The “blessed” animals are the dogs and cats. Now, even pigs have become pets. Their [owners] build a beautiful home for them, give them a nice bed and give them good things to eat. This is a blessing. Poor, blessed, high status and low status all exist in the animal realm as well. The human realm is the same. Think about it, aren’t all sentient beings equal? In the human realm we also see the animal realm, people with corrupted morals, as well as the “poor among the rich”, who seek to acquire wealth by inhumane means. However, among people, there are also the “rich among the poor” and the “rich among the rich”. The exist in the human realm and can be found all throughout the Six Realms; the animal realm can also be found all throughout the Six Realms.

So, to sum things up, those who transcend the Ten Realms [see] all the realms as equal. There is nothing to discriminate over, for the nature of True Suchness is equal in all, and all are equal to the Buddha. This is the view of those who have transcended this state. So, “He still sees the Ten Realms clearly”. Within the Ten Realms, [beings of] the animal realm also engage in spiritual practice. Animals also engage in the Bodhisattva-practice; people can see this. Thus, it says He “sees [them] clearly”. Despite transcending the Ten Realms, He still exists within the Six Realms.

So, “He uses His incredible, wondrous wisdom to clearly illuminate the Ten Realms”. This is transcendent wisdom. With transcendent wisdom, He is able to do this. The Ten Realms all look the same from the state of Buddhahood. The Buddha respects the beings of the animal realm; they are all capable of attaining Buddhahood. Even if they commit evil deeds, even if they commit the Ten Evils and fall into hell, they will still be able to attain Buddhahood. So, His is the incredible, wondrous wisdom that transcends all. However, we poor humans are still within the Ten Dharma-Realms. We are still in the Four Noble Realms still within the Ten Dharma-Realms and the Six Unenlightened Realms. Even these who walk the Bodhisattva-path still have some slight afflictions that they have yet to eliminate, to say nothing of us ordinary beings or Solitary Realizers. Although they understand the principles, they are unwilling to go among people to transform sentient beings. This is to say nothing of ignorant ordinary beings; there is no need to talk about that. This is what it means to see the sentient beings of the Ten Realms clearly; they are still like this. “[The dragon girl] understood the extremely profound, subtle and wondrous Dharma. Her body and mind were clear, pure and perfect”. The dragon girl already had such a thorough, clear understanding of the principles. So, she understood that the Buddha-Dharma is subtle and wondrous, [comprised of] profound, subtle and wondrous principles. From this passage where she praises the Buddha, we can understand that the dragon girl also had this transcendent Dharma, which is profound, subtle and wondrous. Most notably, “Her body and mind were clear, pure and perfect”. Even though she was in the animal realm, she also engaged in spiritual practice! So, “A seed gives rise to an ocean of fruits. By penetrating the fruit, we see the source of the seed; transgressions and blessings do not disappear". These are the principles. With this “seed”, she was able to have to many “fruits” manifest. A tree comes from single seed. When causes and conditions converge, the tree will [produce] countless seeds, on and on; in an endless cycle, year after year, it will continue to produce seeds. Our lives are the same. If we are willing to create blessings for people, even though one lifetime is not long, we will be able to [sow] many seeds of goodness and will able to reap unlimited fruits. The seeds contained within will, generation after generation, continue to give rise to more [seeds]. This is even more so for the dragon girl; who knows how many past lives she has lived? She spent all of [her lives] in the Ten Realms, the Nine Realms, the Six Realms and the Four Forms of Birth, coming and going between them. In this life, in the dragon palace in the ocean, she was the dragon king’s daughter. However, she had this past “seed”; she had likewise walked this path.

The Buddha had now attained Buddhahood. In the Jataka Sutra, in the past, He also had many causes and conditions. Thus, “A seed gives rise to an ocean of fruits”, it will bear many fruits. So, “By penetrating the fruit”, by digging into the fruit, we are seeking the source of the “seed”. Even if the “seed” at its source is very tiny, it will still bear “fruits” that are very big. Sakyamuni Buddha also spent many lifetimes and dust-inked kalpas continuously accumulating [causes and conditions]. Just as “many grains of rice make a bushel” and “many drops of water make a river, a seed gives rise to an ocean of fruits”. If we create negative karma, then for all [the negative karma], we create in one lifetime, we may face several lifetimes of retributions for it. Because we will spend all these lifetimes in ignorance, we will constantly create ignorance. If we continue on like this, endlessly, our negative karma will go on and on. If we have the aspiration to create blessings and remember it, in our lives to come, we will still seek the wondrous Dharma and will always go among people to transform sentient beings. If we do this, we can also accumulate [causes and conditions] lifetime after lifetime. Thus, “A seed gives rise to an ocean of fruits. By penetrating the fruit, we see the source of the seed; transgressions and blessings do not disappear”. We must understand this very clearly.

Moreover, she learned, practiced realized and attained the path to Buddhahood in order to deliver sentient beings. she invited the Buddha to testify that she had an awakened nature and was capable of attain Bodhi, wanting to resolve Wisdom Accumulated’s doubts. The dragon girl elucidated the Great Vehicle Dharma and constantly expounded the wondrous Dharma, she immediately to the south and attained Buddhahood.

“Moreover, she learned, practiced realized and attained the path to Buddhahood in order to deliver sentient beings. this dragon girl already understood, and she served others constantly. She had learned a lot about the path to Buddhahood and also went about people to deliver sentient beings. Thus, “She invited the Buddha to testify that she had an awakened nature the Buddha had confirmed and witnessed. Everyone possesses this Buddha-nature, the nature of True Suchness. So, she was able to “attain Bodhi”. She wanted to “resolve Wisdom Accumulated’s doubts.” It was because she had already accumulated this that she came before the Buddha and asked Him to testify to this, to testify that all sentient beings have the Tathagata’s nature of wisdom and to testify that the dragon girl had already listened to many teachings and had gone among people to deliver sentient beings. She used [the Buddha’s testimony] to eliminate Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva’s doubts. In this [sutra] passage, she wanted to resolve. Wisdom Accumulated’s doubts.

So, the dragon girl said, “l have elucidated the Great Vehicle Dharma and constantly expounded the wondrous Dharma.” She had heard the Buddha-Dharma taken it to heart and understood. She went among people and transformed sentient beings using the Great Vehicle Dharma. She also expounded the wondrous Dharma of the Great Vehicle. This is what the dragon girl did. So, “She immediately went to the south and attain Buddhahood. Her future causes and conditions were such that she would attain Buddhahood in the south.

In this [sutra] passage, the Buddha wanted Wisdom Accumulated to understand and for us to understand as well that we should not discriminate based on sentient beings’ appearance. We must eliminate [attachment to] the appearances of the Ten Realms and attain truly transcendent wisdom.

So, the previous sutra passage says, “Human and heavenly beings honor and admire Him.” This is the dragon girl praising the Buddha. “Dragons and spirits all pay their respects. Among all the varieties of sentient beings, there is no one who does not revere him.”

In praise of the Buddha, all human and heavenly beings pay their respects. Even the Dharma-protectors [in heaven] and the sentient beings in the ocean pay their respect. “Moreover, upon hearing His teachings, I will attain Bodhi. The Buddha alone can confirm this. I expound the Great Vehicle teachings to deliver sentient beings from sufferings.

[She said], “Listen to the Buddha confirm how quickly I am able to attain Bodhi. Only You, the Buddha, can confirm this for me. Only You, the Buddha, can understand me, because for such a long time, I have constantly elucidated the Great Vehicle teachings and delivered sentient beings from sufferings.” The dragon girl came before the Buddha praised the Buddha in verse. She also expressed that she had [delivered beings] not just in this life in the dragon palace. Throughout lifetime after lifetime, in the Six Realms, in all of the nine realms, she had also formed Bodhisattva-aspirations and gone among people to transform sentient beings.

The following sutra passage continues on to say, “At the time, Sariputra said to the dragon girl, ‘You said that soon you will attain the unsurpassed path. This matter is had to believe.”

Before, Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva did not believe this. When the dragoon girl appeared and praised the Buddha, this eliminated Wisdom Accumulated’s doubts, so Wisdom Accumulated had nothing to say. But then Sariputra began to raise his doubts.

This time, Sariputra spoke directly to the dragon girl. So, “At the assembly, Sariputra saw Manjusri tell Wisdom Accumulated that the eight-year-old dragon girl being compassionate, harmonious and graceful, was able to attain Bodhi, so he also raised his doubts.

This is because he was also listening at the assembly and had heard Manjusri Bodhisattva say to Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva that she was “compassionate, harmonious and graceful.” She was eight years old, but she was compassionate, harmonious and graceful “and was able to attain Bodhi.” He did not believe that she had already attained the Bodhi-path. Even though she had come to ask the Buddha to bear witness for her, Sariputra still expressed that he had this doubts. She was a Great Vehicle practitioners a Bodhisattva who understood just about everything. As a Small Vehicle practitioners, although Sariputra was foremost in wisdom in the world, he was still a Hearer. Though he had received the Buddha’s prediction of further Buddhahood, he had yet to attain Buddhahood. The Buddha had simply bestowed predictions on him. Only in the future, after countless kalpas spent earnestly engaging in spiritual practice, would he be able to attain Buddhahood. So, this is why he still had doubts. Thus, he asked her directly, “You said that soon you will attain the unsurpassed path. This I every hard to believe. Not only did you say it yourself, but Manjusri Bodhisattva also said it. This is hard for people to believe.” This was because the dragon girl gave rise to Bodhisattva in an instant. So, he said that she would attain the unsurpassed path.

Manjusri Bodhisattva said that as soon as he taught [the same] she understood. This is what Manjusri Bodhisattva said. How can it be that immediately upon hearing it, quickly, instantaneously, she was able to give rise to Bodhicitta? How could she have faith in it so fast? How could she attain Buddhahood so quickly? This really was hard to believe.

Sariputra had engaged in spiritual practice for several lifetime. Moreover, among the Buddha’s Dharma-assembly he was foremost in wisdom. For many decades, he had been listening to the Buddha’s [teachings] and he still had not given rise to Bodhicitta. How could it be that this dragon girl in the dragon palace in the ocean, once Manjusri Bodhisattva spoke to her, was able to accept [the Dharma] instantly and give rise to Bodhicitta? [Sariputra] compared himself to the dragon girl. “How could the dragon girl [immediately] give rise Bodhicitta upon listening? I have listened [to the Dharma] for so long, and I have been unable to able to do it? How was she able to do it? So, Sariputra raised [his doubts].

From “you said” onward, Sariputra summed up what was hard to believe. He relayed what others had said and states his own doubts. What he meant was : “We all uphold the demeanor of great men and bear the distinction of heroes who have transcended the mundane. Throughout all these years, we have been fortunate to hear this Dharma, yet we still to wait for many kalpas before we can attain Buddhahood. This is to say nothing of ”the fact that you are a non-human female. When you regard attaining the Buddha-fruit to be as easy as this, I fear that your big talk greatly undermines your credibility and is extremely difficult to find faith in”.

So, this means that [Sariputra] “summed up what was hard to believe”. What Sariputra said here was to “relay what others had said” about how the dragon girl could attain Buddhahood. So, he “stated his own doubts”. These were Saripoutra’s own doubts. When he said “we all,” Sariputra meant that he felt that, “I am a great man. I have also received everyone’s praise for my spiritual practice. I am foremost in wisdom. Among the Buddha’s disciples, I am one who ‘bears the distinction of heroes and transcends the mundane.”’ In other words, he was saying he was very talented. “I also have the body and spirit of a great man; I am so outstanding. Throughout all these years, in this lifetime, I have already heard the Buddha teach the Dharma and have listened for such a long time. Throughout all these years, I have been fortunate to hear this Dharma this wondrous Dharma for such a long time, yet I still need to wait for many kalpas before I can attain Buddhahood the Buddha has bestowed predictions upon me. But I still need to wait for so many kalpas. I still need to wait for countless kalpas, so how could you attain Bodhi so quickly? I am such a great and marvelous man. I am so excellent I have also listened to the Dharma. Why do I have to wait for so long? How is it that you could do it so quickly?” This was Sariputra wondering, “Why am I so far away from your [level]?” So, “This is to say nothing of the fact that you are a non-human female. You are not human.” This was his discriminatory mindset. “You are not human. You are from the bottom of the ocean. You are an animal. Furthermore, you are a female. You regard attaining the Buddha-fruit to be as easy as this. Do you think attaining Buddhahood is that easy? I fear that your big talk greatly undermines your credibility Aren’t you getting ahead of yourself? You have spoken too soon. Aren’t the claims you are making too great? This greatly undermines your credibility. You are not speaking the truth. You are just saying this.” Thus, “It is extremely difficult to find faith in [your words]. This makes it hard for people to believe you. You are not a human, and on top of that, you have a female body.” Why is this so?

The following sutra passage says, “Why is this so? The body of a woman is defiled and is not a vessel for the Dharma, How could you possibly say that you are capable of attaining unsurpassed Bodhi?”

“A woman’s body truly is defiled and is not a vessel for the Dharma. How could you attain Buddhahood so quickly?” So, Sariputra felt the same as Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva, [who felt that] dragons are very arrogant and are not vessels for spiritual practice. [Wisdom Accumulated] discussed this earlier. However, Sariputra also had these doubts. So, he expressed why he did not believe it and explained why it was so difficult to believe.

Why is this so: This explains why he did not believe this. He explained the reasons why it was so hard to believe. 1. Her body was defiled, so it was hard to believe 2. She had no cause, so it was hard to believe 3. She had hindrances, so it was hard to believe.

This is why Sariputra found this hard to believe. “First of all, her body as defiled, so it was hard to believe.” Women’s bodies are defiled and unclean. So, he did not believe that she could attain Buddhahood so quickly. “Secondly, she had no cause, so it was hard to believe.” It was impossible that she had any cause. In fact, whatever cause, whatever seed she had planted, she would be able to attain this fruit right now; all of a sudden, very quickly, instantaneously, she would be able to attain Buddhahood. So, “She had no cause, so it was hard to believe.” “Thirdly, she had hindrances, so it was hard to believe.” Third, she had a female body. On top of that, she was an animal. She had all kinds of hindrances. So, he was unable to believe this. “The body of a woman is defiled and is not a vessel for the Dharma.” Because a woman’s body is defiled, it is not a vessel for the Dharma.

The body of a woman is defiled and is not a vessel for the Dharma: In the skillful teachings, it says that all women have the Five Hindrances and cannot attain Buddhahood. Thus, he was attached to this, as the reason he found this hard to believe. A female body in the human realm is the mark of karmic retributions for transgressions. She would be incapable of taking the supreme and wondrous Dharma of the Great Vehicle as her refuge. Thus she is not a vessel for the Dharma.

“In the skillful teachings, it says that all women have the Five Hindrances and cannot attain Buddhahood. Thus, he was attached to this as the reason he found this hard to believe.” This was the beginning of his doubts. Because women have the Five Hindrances, they are unable to attain Buddhahood. So, “A female body in the human realm is the mark of karmic retributions for transgressions.” Among humans, women have much [negative] karma. What are the Three Subordinations and Four Virtues? When they are small, they must obey their parents. When they grow up and marry, they must obey their husbands. After having children, they must obey their sons. All their lives, they must obey someone. These are the Three Subordinations and Four Virtues. This is already a big hindrance for women. This is to say nothing of the different mindset that women have. We will talk more about this later. [A female body] “is the mark of karmic retributions for transgressions.” Women have many psychological [hindrances], physiological [hindrances], social expectations and so on. “She is incapable of taking the supreme and wondrous Dharma of the Great Vehicle as her refuge. Because you have so many hindrances, you are incapable of attaining the Great Vehicle Dharma and taking refuge in the wondrous Great Vehicle. You are incapable of advancing the Buddha-Dharma. You are incapable of broadly transforming sentient beings. You are incapable of comprehending much Dharma. You have all these various hindrances, so you are unable to do this.” So, “[You are] not a vessel for the Dharma. You are not a vehicle for spiritual practice. How could you possibly say that you are capable of attaining unsurpassed Bodhi?” “Since your body is not a vehicle for spiritual practice, how are you capable of attaining Bodhi?” He did not believe it; he was unable to believe it.

How could you possibly say that you are capable of attaining unsurpassed Bodhi?: He did not believe that she could fulfill one of the Four Great Vows, the vow to realize unsurpassed Bodhi.

So, this was impossible for her to do, because in order attain Bodhi, one must make the Four Great Vows and put the Four Great Vows into practice. Only by making the Four Great Vows and fulfilling the vow to realize unsurpassed Bodhi will we be able to [attain Buddhahood.] This is what Sariputra said to the dragon girl. She had attained Buddhahood so quickly, so he had doubts. From the outset, Sariputra [believe] that women have so many hindrances, have many psychological [hindrances] etc. There are a lot of things they cannot do even though they want to do them. This is a very difficult thing.

For example, [one of] the Four Great Vows is “I vow to deliver countless sentient beings,” but a woman’s mentality is to “care for her husband, children and kitchen.” We always hear that this is a woman’s mentality, so she cannot be like a great man who can be a brother to all the in the world. For men, for great men, “All men on Earth are brothers.” Just comparing these two sayings, there is a big difference [between them.] When it comes down to it, how can [women] fulfil the first of the Four Great Vows, “I vow to deliver countless sentient beings”? This is to say nothing of their afflictions. Women have especially high amounts of afflictions. So, how will they be able to fulfill the “vow to eliminate endless afflictions”? How will they be able to eliminate afflictions? They are unable to do this “I vow to learn infinite Dharma-doors.” The Dharma-doors are so great. “Are you really able to learn them all?” “As for the vow to attain unsurpassed Buddhahood, are you capable of doing this?” “You cannot even fulfill this one vow, so how are you able to attain unsurpassed Bodhi?” This is something we must mindfully seek to comprehend. What is the difference between men and women? The difference lies in long-standing social ideas, that women have persistent physiological and psychological hindrances in the way they live. This is how traditional society is in this world; since ancient times, there have been these many hindrances. So, we must seek to comprehend this. We must comprehend the principles within. Of course, there is a lot to analyze. We must very mindfully seek to comprehend this. Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva was unable to believe this. Sariputra had even stronger doubts. So, there were many doubts. Wisdom Accumulated Bodhisattva just felt that her body was not a vehicle for spiritual practice.
“Dragons are arrogant.” “On top of that, she is an animal, so she is not a vehicle for spiritual practice.” It is that simple. However, Sariputra had even more doubts. So, we must understand the different levels among noble beings and ordinary beings. As for suspicion and doubt, the more we understand the Dharma, the less doubt we will have. But before we understand completely, we will have more afflictions, ignorance and doubt. So, we must work hard to cultivate our minds, clearly discern right from wrong and have firm faith in what we must believe. As for the delusions we must not accept, we must dispel them immediately. This way, afflictions and ignorance will not contaminate us. This faith must be deeply etched in our hearts. If we can do this, the Ten Realms will be equal, and we will completely eliminate [our attachment to] the Nine Realms Therefore, we must always be mindful!

(Source: Da Ai TV – Wisdom at Dawn program – Explanation by Master Chen-Yen)
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