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 20181203《靜思妙蓮華》樂靜精進 同行大道 (第1492集) (法華經·從地涌出品第十五)

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發表主題: 20181203《靜思妙蓮華》樂靜精進 同行大道 (第1492集) (法華經·從地涌出品第十五)   周日 12月 02, 2018 6:47 pm

20181203《靜思妙蓮華》樂靜精進 同行大道 (第1492集) (法華經·從地涌出品第十五)

⊙菩提此言道,薩埵此言心,摩訶此言大,此諸人等皆求廣博大道。成熟眾生故,體解正等覺,悟入大道心。
⊙大道心覺有情,精進大道,此諸人等,皆求廣博大道,又成熟眾生故,道心大道心之,同行大道。
⊙「亦不依止,人天而住。常樂深智,無有障礙,亦常樂於諸佛之法,一心精進求無上慧。」《法華經從地涌出品第十五》
⊙「爾時世尊欲重宣此義,而說偈言:『阿逸多當知!是諸大菩薩,從無數劫來,修習佛智慧,悉是我所化,令發大道心』」。《法華經從地涌出品第十五》
⊙從無數劫來,修習佛智慧,悉是我所化,令發大道心:修行學習佛之智慧,悉是我身之所教化,令發無上大道之心。
⊙「此等是我子,依止是世界,常行頭陀事,志樂於靜處,捨大眾憒鬧,不樂多所說。」《法華經從地涌出品第十五》
⊙此等是我子,依止是世界:此頌明樂靜精進。此等皆是我之法子,依止空界,異餘菩薩。
⊙常行頭陀:頭陀是梵語,此云抖擻。發精進行者,名為頭陀。謂修空寂,抖擻一切塵勞煩惱。
⊙志樂於靜處,捨大眾憒鬧,不樂多所說:立志樂居空閑僻靜之處,捨去眾事,寡於言語。

【證嚴上人開示】
菩提此言道,薩埵此言心,摩訶此言大,此諸人等皆求廣博大道。成熟眾生故,體解正等覺,悟入大道心。

菩提此言道
薩埵此言心
摩訶此言大
此諸人等
皆求廣博大道
成熟眾生故
體解正等覺
悟入大道心

菩薩,要用心!菩薩,常常說「菩薩」,菩薩是為何叫做菩薩?菩薩就是「菩提薩埵」,我們將它簡稱,就是「菩薩」。「菩提」翻譯過來叫做「道」,「薩埵」我們將它翻譯作「心」。「摩訶」者,將它翻譯作「大」,意思就是大道心的人叫做菩薩。而「菩提」也能夠翻作「覺」,我們一般都是將它翻作「覺」,就是覺悟,行此大道的人。所以,尤其是「摩訶」,意思就是大,是大覺悟,走入這條大道,發這分心的人。若較順來說,叫做發大道心的人叫做菩薩,大菩薩。

這些人全都是求廣博大道,很精進;精進,一心一志,向著廣博的大道走。長久的時間,走在這條路是無央數劫,一直都是在這條路上,就是大覺道的路上,一直在精進,而且這條路,是愈鋪愈平、愈開愈大,這叫做「大道心」。不是輕鬆走路而已,就是邊開、邊鋪、邊走,開大道、鋪大路,這是長長久久的事情;不斷在人間,生生世世、來來回回,無不都是開大路,一直開、一直進步,向前前進。一直鋪、一直平,讓後面的人看到路,讓後面的人,能夠腳踏實地,走上這條路,這就是發大道心的人。

這就是他們,「求廣博大道」的意願,這個意願唯有一項,就是要成就眾生。為了後面的眾生好走路,為了後面的眾生,明朗看到這一條路,這就是菩薩的志願,求廣大的道路。所以,「體解正等覺」。路一直開、一直鋪,這條路的風光、路的方向,久來方向愈清楚;長久以來,這個地方的環境愈熟悉,心地風光愈豐富,這就是在求道。求道,不只是求,也是在鋪,「上求下化」,不斷向上求法,心理,一直體會心地風光。人群中,一直沒有停歇,努力向前,這樣自然他就能夠身心體解。

所以體解「體解大道」,這條道路是我們自己開過來的,我們怎麼會不熟悉呢?很熟悉了。體解道路風光,清楚了,方向如何走,分毫不差錯,這叫做「體解」。我們在佛法中也就是這樣,佛法的道理,得一句,好好受用,從這個一字、一句好好去體會,用在生活中。一理通,萬理徹,這個道理我已經知道,這「成所作智」;清楚了,我接觸到的境界,我知道我的身體在這個環境中,我要如何去付出,我的身體力行在日常生活中,接觸什麼樣的境界我已經清楚。

「妙觀察智」,了解周圍的環境是如何,我的身如何接觸、如何造作,我應該要說什麼話,什麼是該說、什麼是不該說。人我是非,在這個大時代,應該需明大是非,如何將它表達出來,分析得讓它清楚;妙觀察,用心體會,身心很仔細,沒有分開掉。每一天、每一天,身體接觸外面的境界,開口動舌,要將道理和人、事、物,會合起來,沒有離開這個心意,「平等性智」。心意要如何去發揮?沒有分別、沒有貪著,完全就是發揮我們的良能,利益人群,這「平等性智」付出,這不就是「體解大道」呢?這種在這個境界裡,很分明、不糊塗,我們的心不會去受境界染穢,不起貪念、不起瞋心、不起癡念,這一面鏡子,不會受環境將我們染污到。

不論境界是多惡,這面鏡子在照,清楚這是惡劣的境界。但是「覺」,就是知道了,境界離開了,鏡子離開了,這面鏡子,已經沒有那個惡劣的境界,沒有了,回歸原來的清淨。什麼樣環境的利誘,不論他在我們的面前,是用什麼樣的態度、用什麼樣的物質,名利、地位在我們的面前,我們的心還是自在;如何的誘惑,都沒有入這個心鏡裡面,只是照明而不受染著,清清楚楚,完全了解。在大是非中清楚,清楚我們的智慧要如何去運用,運用讓它道理分明;是的是道理,不對的是邪,是「非道」,我們能夠清楚明白,是、非這樣分開了。

該做的,就是這麼願意去做,不怕辛苦,這條路是我們要走的,所以我們要開這樣的路;不是我們走而已,願意要帶領大家來走,所以我們要讓它鋪平。「非」,那就是坎坷、危險,我們就要將它撥開;走在前面的人,就要撥開那個危險的環境,要很清楚要如何領導人,走出了平坦的道路。就看到在非洲,慈濟人也是這樣,他們真真正正,就是行在菩薩大道中;儘管還是凡夫,但他們這念心,已經啟發起來了。在非洲,已經也是二十多年了,在一個一個苦難的國家,遙遠的地方,南非的慈濟人,從臺商接觸了慈濟,將這顆種子帶出去。種子既帶出去了,到那個地方去,臺商,大家一起就將這個理念精神,互相分享、彼此啟動。觀念,師父說的──站在人家的土地,頂著人家的天,取在當地,應該要用在當地,造福人群。理念聽進去了,大家共同的心,從這樣一個一個志同道合,會合起來。

當他們最動亂時,非洲的人排斥白種,就是歐洲的人,他們就開始有了動亂了,受控制久了,人心思變,所以,他們就動亂起來了。所以有一段時間,二十多年前,那時候真的是很不安定;甚至大動亂,也是一樣放火、搶人等等,社會很動亂。那時候,有的臺商想:「不如歸去吧!」其中就有這位黃居士,一大早就電話回來,說:「師父,我想要撤離南非了,要搬回英國。」問他:「為什麼?」就告訴我原因、理由。

電話中,我們這裡的一大早,我就說:「站在人家的土地,頂著人家的天,我們應該要感恩,我們應該回饋。我們事業既然在這裡,過去所得的也不少,我們現在應該,大家來回饋當地苦難人。」

從這樣開始,大家發心開始關懷當地人,儘管在大動亂時,他們也是去付出,送物資去,去安撫他們的心。在苦難中,那些人已經得到,知道有一群不是很白種的人,是黃種人,這群人叫做華人。他們已經分出來了,知道這些人是好人,是在幫助他們的人,尤其是穿這樣的服裝──「藍天白雲」,這樣的人都是在幫助人的人。所以,這樣慢慢走過來,很坎坷的道路,走出了一條平坦的路;這個道已經開了,路也在鋪了,讓人人能夠好走。走出了那個時代,只要門口有貼著 LOGO,他的車有貼慈濟的 LOGO,那輛車沒人會來破壞;這個房子沒人會去破壞,已經將真正愛的品牌推出去了。

甚至還有一次,有一位臺商去南非做生意,他開的是 Benz 的車。他有一次,當他開車,中途加油,看到一群年輕人在那個地方,不知道在說什麼,注視著他,手指著這個方向。也看到加油站的人,加好油之後,趕緊走近那群人。他油加好了,開車就離開了,平安離開了。那輛車開幾百公里的路,之後再回過頭來,同樣在這個加油站來加油。加油站這個人,還是同樣這個人,看到這輛車,就告訴他:「你早上是很危險。」「我什麼事情啊?」他就告訴他:「早上有一群年輕人,他們說你開這麼好的車,你一定是很有錢。他們就是要來搶、要來綁,我是趕緊去告訴他們,說你是穿這套衣服,你是好人。」但是這個車主莫名其妙,「我穿這套衣服,有什麼呢?」他就說:「你穿這套衣服,藍衣、白領、白褲,你不是慈濟人嗎?」他自己嚇一跳,自己的內心:我不是慈濟人,但是我知道慈濟。所以,他從那個時候開始,內心感恩慈濟。

回來臺灣,他就向他的朋友這樣說:「慈濟人這套服裝很好用,我不是穿那套,我只是穿較淺白的褲子,只是穿了一件這樣衣領是白色的,他們就將我當作是他們的,『藍天白雲』,救我一命。」這是回來臺灣,向他的朋友這樣說。他的朋友是我們的委員,來說給我聽。我說:「你要叫他進來,正式穿,穿上這套『藍天白雲』。」

這是很多年前的事情了,這是要告訴大家,菩薩道是要從很困難中,我們用心去開、用心去鋪,鋪出了真正有一條的路,讓人看得到、讓人走得到;鋪路的人,就是自己走路的過來人。一直到現在,南非已經是落地伸根,現在我們的華人,臺商在那裡,慢慢年紀也大了,而有的人也回來臺灣了。現在要活動也是要靠當地,當地的志工,所以我們看到,現在很多當地志工。

我們現在年年運去,運去南非的白米,他們在六七月開始就要發放了。他們是真心,就是心無私,他們已經法入心,慈濟人如何做,他們就是如何做。每年將要發放白米,他們會去選擇最貧困的鄉村,而且貧中之貧,最貧困的人。就像這次(二0一七年) ,他們才開始要發放。但是發放的前兩個月,要去探勘,走入那個最貧窮的村莊進去。在那個地方,整個村莊都是貧窮人,這這麼多人,上萬人要去哪裡選?他們運用他們的智慧,用誠懇的心先去和大家互動,去說慈濟的故事,去說因緣,因緣果報他們也會說呢!

佛法現在他們很入心,師父如何說的法,他們都應用在他們如何去說話,如何去引故事,從佛法的故事,引到他們當地的故事,就是這樣循循善誘,先將大家的心淨化,然後就呼籲大家來做志工。因為幫助人的人,是我們最富有的因,而付出是最快樂的果報,所以我們要無私,我們來提供最苦難人的名單、最需要幫助的家庭,讓我們去調查、我們去看,我們能夠來幫助,比我們更苦的人。他們用這樣的精神,要發放之前,兩個月的時間,他們分頭、分組、分隊,選擇最貧困;他們用這樣的時間去呼籲,先去奠定他們志工的精神。

所以,在那個地方,發放二三千戶。就是在那裡要先將人,志工的精神將它建立起來,然後再來時間。那段時間,在七月二十九日在發放,場面感動人啊!這種付出的人,他們是載米去,要發之前他們也做很多的彩排,也每家戶去調查之後,要發那個米單給他們,都為他們解釋得很清楚。米一車一車進來了,志工一個一個集合了,將那些米從車上一直搬下來,疊得整整齊齊。車廂空了,他們就利用車廂做舞臺,爬上車,在那個地方帶動、分享、說話。那些志工,他們自己也貧困,他們也出來現身說法──他如何投入,與志工一起,去關懷比他更辛苦的人,他感受到自己,他見苦知福,以為他自己很苦的,原來看到的,比他更苦啊!他發願,他甘願,甘願做志工。

那麼,志工這段時間,在付出、付出,心很快樂、很快樂的,每一個都會站上車廂去分享,所以很圓滿,用這樣的方法,所以很有智慧,這樣帶出了很多的志工。七月底八月初,是冬令的時間,不斷在放,發出了幾百公噸的白米,這實在是讓人很讚歎,這就是發道心。已經先覺悟,在苦難中覺悟了苦,苦諦;覺悟了「苦諦」,來自於「因緣果報」,所集過來的道理,他們清楚了,他們甘願,就是不要再起這個貪念的心,所以他將它滅了;滅掉了也是要擁有的這念心,他們將它滅掉,「我甘願不要,我要來付出,借力使力,我也是能幫助人的人」。用這樣滅掉了自己要擁有,讓別人去分享。這條路他們走得很歡喜,所以心靈富有,這就是在非洲。

類似這種的事情,在非洲這群當地志工,已經在那裡發光發亮了,這就是道心,「大道心」,他們長久,從二十多年的路,已經開出了大路。他們能夠將這個精神理念,開拓出了第七個國家出來,若說起來很貼心,讓人很歡喜。這就是他們不求什麼,只要「廣博大道」,也「成熟眾生」。那些沒有米可吃,在飢餓中,讓他們有機會能夠聞到米香,米的香味,讓他們有享受到,過這個冬天。這叫做人間道,他們的付出,他們在付出的當中,他們「體解正等覺」,這個正確的道路應該如何走,雖然他們還是凡夫,但是他們已經入道了,在這個道中在走,有種這個種子下去,生生世世應該繼續走。

所以,「悟入大道心」,知道這條路,能夠走的路。我們若以人間,用這樣來說,「道」,人人能夠走、人人能夠鋪、人人能夠開,對準方向,淨化人心,哪有困難呢?所以我們要用心。所以「大道心覺有情,精進大道,此諸人等,皆求廣博大道」。

大道心覺有情
精進大道
此諸人等
皆求廣博大道
又成熟眾生故
道心大道心之
同行大道

這些全都是在求大道,無私的心,大我,沒有小我,願意付出,已經很成熟了,就是完全利益眾生的,「大道心」,有志一同,共同付出。

前面的文我們這樣說:「亦不依止,人天而住。」

亦不依止人天而住
常樂深智
無有障礙
亦常樂於諸佛之法
一心精進
求無上慧
《法華經從地涌出品第十五》

釋迦牟尼佛介紹這些人,來自哪裡啊?從地湧出,他們住在哪裡?其實他們所住的地方,「不依止人天(而住)」,昨天說過了。「常樂深智」,這些人都在求甚深的智慧,已經這些智慧入心了,人間事、是非無障礙了,沒有了,所以「亦常樂於諸佛之法」。雖然已經體會了解了,避開了很多的是非,入人群中無障礙了,也不斷不斷還是「上求」,還是在人群中「下化」,他們不偏空、不偏有,就是行在中道。這些人都是「一心精進」,繼續在「求無上慧」,這些大菩薩。

接下來再說:「爾時世尊欲重宣此義,而說偈言:『阿逸多當知!是諸大菩薩,從無數劫來,修習佛智慧,悉是我所化,令發大道心』」。

爾時
世尊欲重宣此義
而說偈言
阿逸多當知
是諸大菩薩
從無數劫來
修習佛智慧
悉是我所化
令發大道心
《法華經從地涌出品第十五》

這段文更清楚。釋迦佛已經對彌勒菩薩說,「你要知道,從地湧出來這些菩薩大眾」,這些人在修學,長久以來,很久,無數劫修習佛智慧。這些人都是我所化,他們發心一直到現在,一路來都是這樣,一直在學,學佛的智慧。

從無數劫來
修習佛智慧
悉是我所化
令發大道心:
修行學習佛之智慧
悉是我身之所教化
令發無上大道之心

看看,這麼多大菩薩,這麼長久的時間,佛的智慧還是未學完,還是不斷在追求,「悉是我身之所教化」,這些人都是我親自,這樣教育他們過來的。所以,「令發無上大道之心」,生生世世就是這樣,啟發他們的心,每生世都是這樣,同一條路。今天開不完的路,明天再開,今生還未開盡,還未到盡頭的路,來生再開,生生世世,日日月月就是這樣,在開這樣的路,開這樣的道、鋪這樣的路。

接下來這段文再說:「此等是我子,依止是世界,常行頭陀事,志樂於靜處,捨大眾憒鬧,不樂多所說。」

此等是我子
依止是世界
常行頭陀事
志樂於靜處
捨大眾憒鬧
不樂多所說
《法華經從地涌出品第十五》

這些人就是這樣,所行的是「頭陀」事,他們很甘願,甘願行苦行。娑婆世界是堪忍的世界,是苦,苦,苦苦的世界;若是不堪忍,就求脫離了,他們就是堪忍。就像在佛法中,佛法中在修行,佛的弟子中就有完全修苦行,就像迦葉尊者,所修的就是極苦行,這頭陀事,就是極苦行。所以,佛陀就是這樣說,讚歎這些人,在這個娑婆世界,就已經堪忍的世界,又在修行中願意走入最貧困,最最貧困的地方,去和最最貧困的人生活。同樣的生活,去吃那種酸臭掉的、沒人要的、丟掉的東西。他們不是去家家托缽,他們要托缽就是去那最最貧困,吃他們最不好的東西;他們甘願,他們就是這樣的修行。這是佛陀的讚歎,在這個堪忍的人間,又去修這樣,平常人無法堪忍,他們願意去做這樣的事情,去這樣的生活,修這種的行。這是佛陀讚歎他們。「此等是我子,依止是世界」。


此等是我子
依止是世界:
此頌明樂靜精進
此等皆是我之法子
依止空界
異餘菩薩

這個頌就是在讚歎他們樂靜處,他們是以身作則,用這個身體做給人看。他們堪得忍,他們不是到處要去說法,自己做不到,但是就只要說而已。這種做不到,只是會說、指揮人去做,自己不願意付出,這大有人在!佛陀,他讚歎這種身體力行,不是很重要的話他不會去說,但是他在人群中就是做給人看,是這樣在修行,做一個修行中的典範者。這樣的典範,既修行了,就要關心門──關欲、關貪、關無明、關瞋,這種的心門要關。所以就是苦行,在苦中能夠克服得過,那就是沒有癡、沒有瞋,也沒有貪了。佛陀讚歎這樣的人,所以「樂靜精進」。「此等皆是我之法子」。這些人就是我的法子,很了解我的心,所以迦葉「拈花微笑」。佛陀拈花,迦葉體會到了,這就是法子,佛陀傳法。「依止空中」。這些人「依止空界」,空,不是要去生在天堂,他就是在中道,不執有、不持空,他就是「空中妙有」。這和一般的菩薩比較不同。所以,「常行頭陀事」。

常行頭陀:
頭陀是梵語
此云抖擻
發精進行者
名為頭陀
謂修空寂
抖擻一切塵勞煩惱

「頭陀」,梵語,就是「抖擻」,就是將所有的污染完全振開了。就像我們若看到雞、鴨、貓、狗,若是沾溼身體,牠就整個身體這樣抖一下,將水抖開,身體會乾。這種,這就像是這樣,將骯髒、污染離開他的身、心,沒有了。其實,他穿的衣服,很多都是「糞掃衣」,也有很骯髒,但是他的心沒有骯髒,已經東西有污染,來到他的就近,完全去除,沒有髒污,沒有那個煩惱、無明、惑,在他的心裡。這就是「頭陀」,能夠克服一切的欲念,全都克服掉了。「發精進行者,名為頭陀」,也就是「修空寂」。平時所修的行,一切是「空」,但是他很認真在修行,是為了回歸如來本性,「有」,到佛的境界,這「空中妙有」,在人群中的典範。一切的塵勞煩惱,全都沒有了,自己的心靜寂清澄,心在空寂裡,在人間的生活中,他很精進。所以,「志樂於靜處,捨大眾憒鬧,不樂多所說」。就是做就對了。

志樂於靜處
捨大眾憒鬧
不樂多所說:
立志樂居
空閑僻靜之處
捨去眾事
寡於言語

「立志樂居」,他立志,就是很歡喜、很甘願,住在這樣偏僻的地方,或者是安靜的地方,他不會要去很熱鬧的地方,不會。但是,同樣是入人群,大家聽了不要錯解哦!他的心地是很僻靜、很靜,很安靜,什麼樣的鬧,都不會入他的心的境界來。看看佛陀,每次若在說話,道場都好幾千人,這些大弟子並沒有離開,還是我們讀每一部經,都全部,大弟子全都是在人群中,所以說起來,已經永居在寂靜清澄的地方,所以「捨去眾事」。眾生,這紛紛擾擾的事情都,都已經放下了,捨掉了,這種煩惱無明。這些人事是非,完全看開、放下這人我是非,不用去和他討論,這是是非非,論也論不清,論也論不清楚、說也說不得,不如不用說了。這種不會去與人辯論,沒有真心要聽的法,他也不會去說,就是這樣很靜默。但是他身體力行,他要說的話,他就是對機,將他的心路歷程對機說法,這就是這樣的菩薩。

所以他們的居處,這些大菩薩來,既不是在這上面,常常大家看到,彌勒菩薩說:「這些菩薩,從來都不曾看過,他們都很少現身。」他們默默在人群中,行中道,這就是這群菩薩,他們的心,是歷久就是守護這個道心,是大道心的菩薩,永恆地守護著。

是啊,我們也應該要有這個大道心,我們也應該要學佛的智慧,是學不盡。學不盡,所以我們才要把握時間,好好用心,聽到的法記住,記憶在心裡。我們落實生活,我們就將聽到的法,套用在我們的生活行動中。要如何身、口、意,安住在我們的誓願,長長久久,在這個所有接觸的環境中,我們「成所作智」,要如何去將這些東西,用在有益人群,好好用心發揮「妙觀察」,要如何去應用,等等。這幾天一直反復,就是要讓大家記下去,刻在心版裡,原來這個法,和我們的起心動念、開口動舌,在身、口、意接觸,沒有離開的法,要讓大家,法就是應用在我們日常生活,這樣我們才有辦法,將方向站得正,我們才有辦法,拿出了分分秒秒就是在開道,就是在鋪路的精神。請大家要時時多用心!


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發表主題: 回復: 20181203《靜思妙蓮華》樂靜精進 同行大道 (第1492集) (法華經·從地涌出品第十五)   周日 12月 16, 2018 3:46 pm

Explanations by Master Cheng-Yan
Subject: Take Joy in Tranquility and Practice Diligently (樂靜精進 同行大道)
Date: December.03.2018

“’Bodhi’ refers to ‘the path’. ‘Sattva’ refers to ‘aspirations’. ‘Maha’ means ‘great’. This is because all these people seek the broad and great path to help sentient beings mature. They comprehend perfect and universal enlightenment and have realized great spiritual aspirations.”

Bodhisattvas, we must be mindful. We constantly speak of “Bodhisattvas”. Why are they called “Bodhisattvas”? “Bodhisattva” is a combination of the words “Bodhi” and “sattva”. “Bodhi” can be interpreted as “the path”. What about “sattva”? “Sattva” refers to [someone with] aspirations. As for “maha,” it is translated as “great”. This means that people with aspirations to [attain] the great path are Bodhisattvas. “Bodhi” can also be translated as “awakened”. We usually translate it in this way, which refers to the awakening of those who walk this great path. Moreover, “maha” means great; it describes those with great awakening who enter this path and form such aspirations. If we are speaking loosely, we refer to those with great spiritual aspirations as Bodhisattvas, great Bodhisattvas.

All of these people seek the broad and great path. They are very diligent; they advance with single-minded resolve toward the broad, profound and great path. For a long time, for countless kalpas, they walk upon this path. They are always on this path; upon this path of great enlightenment, they constantly advance diligently. Furthermore, the more we pave and broaden this path, the smoother and bigger it becomes. This is “great spiritual aspirations”. We do not just calmly walk upon this road, but we pave it as we walk upon it. Opening and paving a great path requires a long time. [Bodhisattvas] ceaselessly return to the human realm life after life, all to clear this great path. They constantly clear [the path] and advance forward. They constantly pave and level [the path] to help those who come after them see it so that those behind them can steadfastly walk upon this path. So, this is what those who form great spiritual aspirations are like. This is their aspiration to “seek the broad and great path”. They only have one aim with this aspiration, to help sentient beings attain fruition [on this path]. They wish to aid those who come after them to walk [steadily] and clearly see this path. These are the aspirations of Bodhisattvas is seeking this broad and great path.

Thus, “They comprehend perfect and universal enlightenment.” As they constantly clear and pave the path, its scenery and direction becomes clearer over time. Over a long time, they become more familiar with the environment [along the path], and the scenery of their minds becomes richer. This is seeking the path. Seeking the path is not just about seeking it, but also about paving it. They “seek the Dharma and transform others.” By constantly seeking the Dharma, they constantly experience the beauty of their minds. By ceaselessly moving forward with great effort among people, they can naturally comprehend [the path] in body and mind.

So, we must “comprehend and great path”. This path is one that we ourselves opened. How could we not be familiar with it? We are very familiar. We clearly comprehend the scenery of the path and can walk in the right direction without deviating. This is what it means to “comprehend”. It is the same for us as we are amidst the Buddha-Dharma. Among the principles of the Buddha-Dharma, we receive a phrase and earnestly put it in practice. With this word or phrase, we earnestly seek to comprehend it and apply it in our daily lives.

By grasping one truth, we understand all truths. We already understand this principle. With “all-accomplishing wisdom,” we clearly understand situations we encounter. We know we are physically in this environment, so in what ways can we help others? Through putting the Dharma into practice in everyday life, we are clear about the conditions we encounter. With “profound discerning wisdom,” we can understand the nature of our surrounding environment, how we connect with it and how we act in it. [We understand] what we ought to say, what we should and should not say. As for interpersonal conflicts, in these times of great [change], we must clearly distinguish right from wrong. How do we express [right and wrong] and analyze it clearly? We must profoundly discern and mindfully seek to comprehend it. We must be very cautious in both body and mind. We must be very cautious in both body and mind.

Every day, when our bodies connect with external conditions, whenever we open our mouths to speak, we must unite the principles with people, matters and things. We must not depart from this mindset of “universal equality wisdom”. How can we exercise this mindset? We must do so without discrimination or attachments and completely exercise our altruistic potential to benefit people. When we serve others with “universal equality wisdom,” haven’t we “comprehended the great path”?

If we are in the world with clarity and no confusion, our minds will remain undefiled by the world. We will not give rise to thoughts of greed, thoughts of anger or thoughts of ignorance. This mirror [of our mind] will not be defiled by our environment. Regardless of how unwholesome the conditions may be, this mirror will clearly reflect the unwholesome conditions.

However, upon being “awakened,” we know that once these conditions are gone from the mirror, this mirror will be free of all evil conditions. They will not be there anymore, and the mirror will return to its original state of purity. No matter what worldly enticements there are, what kind of attitude they show us or what kind of matters they use [to entice us], even if fame and status are before us, our hearts will remain free and at ease. No matter how they try to entice us, [these conditions] will not enter the mirror of our hearts; it will only reflect them while remaining undefiled. With this clarity, we will understand completely. Amidst right and wrong, we will clearly understand how to employ our wisdom and use it to clearly discern the principles. Proper things are the principles of the path. Improper things are deviant and “the wring path”.

We will be able to clearly understand and discern them and will be very willing to do what must be done without fearing difficulties. This is the path we ought to travel, so we must clear such a path. [The path] is not for us alone to walk upon; we must be willing to lead everyone to walk upon it too. Thus, we must [pave the path] evenly. “Wrong” refers to ruggedness and dangers. We must push them aside; those who walk in front must push aside those dangerous [situations]. We must be clear on how to lead others to walk on this even road.

We see in Africa that Tzu Chi volunteers are also like this. They are truly walking upon the great Bodhisattva path. Even though they are still ordinary beings, they have already formed this aspiration. [Tzu Chi] has been in Africa for over 20 years by now, in one suffering country after another, in these distant places. Tzu Chi volunteers in South Africa began with Taiwanese businessmen who came into contact with Tzu Chi. They brought this seed [from Taiwan]. Once they brought the seed to that place, these Taiwanese businessmen shared these ideals and this spirit, encouraging and inspiring one another. They [maintain] the perspective that I taught them. When we stand on other people’s land, beneath other people’s sky, what we obtain locally should be used locally to benefit the people there. After they took these ideals to heart, everyone joined together, sharing the same mindset, the same aspirations and the same path. During their time of greatest unrest, Africans were forcing out white people, those of European [ancestry]. Turmoil began to break out. After a long period of oppression, people were longing for change, so they broke out into upheaval.

Thus, for a period of over 20 years, there truly was no peace. There were even big riots, with acts of arson and robbery. Society had become very disorderly. At that time, some Taiwanese businessmen thought. “Perhaps we should [go home]”. Among them was Mr. Huang. Early one morning he called me and said. “Master, I want to leave South Africa and move back to the United Kingdom.” I asked him why, and then he told me his reasons. During that phone call, when it was morning here, I told him, “when we stand on other people’s land and” beneath other people’s sky, “we ought to be grateful and ought to give back to them”.

“Since you have your business there and have already made a lot of money in the past, now, you ought to stay and give back to the suffering locals.” From then on, they all formed aspirations to care for the locals. Even during periods of great upheaval, [our volunteers] still served others, providing them with material supplies to comfort their hearts. Amidst their suffering, these people were helped. They also knew that there was a group of people who were not white people; they were Asian people, ethnically Chinese. They had already made the distinction and knew that these people were good people who were helping them. This was particularly true of those who wore blue and white volunteer uniforms. These people were all helping others. So, they slowly came around. From an extremely rough road, they paved an even one; they cleared and paved this path so that everyone could walk upon it. After that period, as long as a door or a car has the Tzu Chi logo on it, no one will damage that house or car. They have promoted the brand of true love. There was even an instance when a Taiwanese businessman went to South Africa to do business. He was driving a Mercedes-Benz. One time, when he was driving, he had to get gas. He saw a group of young people at [the gas station]. He did not know what they were saying. They were looking and pointing in his direction. He also saw that the gas station attendant quickly walked over to the group after he finished filing his tank. After [the businessman] filled up his tank, he started his car and drove away safely. After he had driven a couple hundred kilometers and returned the same way, He returned to the same gas station to fill up. The gas station attendant was the same individual as before. Upon seeing the car, he said, “You were in great danger this morning”. [The businessman asked], “What was the problem”. The attendant told him, “This morning there was a group of young people who said that because you have such a nice car, you must be very rich. So, they wanted to rob and kidnap you. I quickly went to tell them that since you wear this outfit, you are a good person”.

This [businessman] was confused. “What does me wearing this outfit have to do with anything?” He replied, “This outfit that you wear is blue, with a white collar and white pants. Aren’t you a Tzu Chi volunteer?” He was startled. He thought to himself, “I am not a Tzu Chi volunteer, but I know Tzu Chi”. So, from that moment onward, he as grateful to Tzu Chi.

Upon returning to Taiwan, he told his friend, “Tzu Chi’s uniform is very useful. I was not wearing the uniform. I merely wore light-colored pants and a shirt with white collar, and they took me for one of their volunteers in blue and white. It saved my life!” This is what, upon returning to Taiwan, he told his friend. His friend is a Tzu Chi commissioner. She came and told me this. I said, “You ought to ask him to join us so he can officially wear this blue and white volunteer uniform”. This happened many years ago. This is to tell everyone that we must mindfully begin to clear and pave the Bodhisattva-path amidst hardships until there is truly a path that others can see and walk upon. Those who pave the path are those who have personally walked it.

Ever since then, [Tzu Chi] has been taking root in South Africa. Now the ethnic Chinese, the Taiwanese businessmen, have slowly grown old, and some want to return to Taiwan. Now our activities there rely on the local volunteers. We can see that there are now many local volunteers there. Now we send rice every year from Taiwan to South Africa. They distribute it in June and July. They are genuine, meaning that they are selfless they have already taken the Dharma to heart. However Tzu Chi volunteers act, [the local volunteers] follow. Every year, when they distribute the rice, they choose the poorest villages and the poorest among the poor.

For example, this time (in 2017), they are just starting to distribute [the rice]. But two months earlier, they had to do visits, going to the poorest villages. There, everyone is extremely poor. With so many people, over ten thousand people, how could they choose? They used their wisdom; with sincerity, they first interacted with everyone, told the story of Tzu Chi and spoke causes and conditions. They were also able to explain the law of karma. They have taken the Buddha-Dharma to heart. From the Dharma that I taught, they applied it in the way they spoke and told stories. They took stories of the Buddha-Dharma and connected them with their local stories. In this way, the patiently guided people. They first brought purity to everyone’s hearts and then called upon everyone to engage in volunteer work, [saying], “Those who help others have the cause for the greatest wealth, and serving others is our most joyful reward. So, we must be selfless. We must provide a list of names of those who suffer most, of those families that need the most assistance. Let us go and survey and see so that we can assist those who suffer more than us”. This was the spirit of the local volunteers. Two months prior to the distribution, they divided into groups to [find] the most impoverished people. They used this time to encourage people there, to first establish their volunteer spirit. So, at that place, they distributed to two or three thousand households. They first helped people there develop their volunteer spirit and then held [the distribution]. At that time, when they held the distribution on July 29th, the scene was truly moving. These people who helped others brought the rice there, and prior to the distribution, they did many rehearsals. After they had surveyed every household, they gave the rice vouchers to them and clearly explained [the process] to them. The rice came truck by truck, and volunteers came together one by one and unloaded the [bags of] rice from the trucks, stacking them in an orderly manner. When the truck was unloaded, they used its bed as a stage. [Volunteers] climbed onto the truck and held a program [for the recipients], sharing with them and talking to them. Those volunteers were also very poor. They also came forward to share their own stories, about how they had devoted themselves to working with the other volunteers and caring for those who face greater hardships than they do. They reflected upon themselves; they saw suffering and recognized their blessings. When people who thought that they suffered greatly saw others who were suffering even more, they formed aspirations and willingly volunteers. During this time, as they volunteered and served others, their hearts were extremely joyful. Every one of them stood on the truck’s bed to share [their stories]. So, it was very successful.

They used these methods, and with great wisdom, they brought out many volunteers in this way. From late July to early August, which is winter time [in South Africa], they continually distributed rice, several hundred metric tons of rice. This is truly praiseworthy. This is forming aspirations toward the path. They were first awakened. Amidst suffering, they awakened to the truth of suffering. They realized the principle that “suffering” comes from the accumulation of “causes and conditions”. They clearly understood this, so they were willing [to give]. This means that they did not want to give rise to thoughts of greed anymore. Thus, they eliminated them; they eliminated this desire to possess things. They eliminated it “I am happy without them. I want to serve others. By leveraging each other’s strength, we can also be people who help others. This is how they eliminated [their desire] to possess things so that they could share with others. They walk upon this path with great joy. So, they are spiritually rich. This is what happened in Africa. There are [many] events similar to this. This group of local volunteers are shining bright in Africa. [They] have formed great spiritual aspirations.

Over a long time, starting over 20 years age, they have opened up this great path. They have been able to use this spirit and ideal, expanding to reach a seventh country.

When I speak of this, it warms my heart and makes me very happy. They seek nothing but the broad and great path and also “to help sentient beings mature.” Those who have no rice to eat and are starving now have a chance to smell the fragrance of rice; they are able to enjoy the fragrance of rice during this winter. [The volunteers’ act of] giving is a path in the world. In serving others, they have come to “comprehend perfect and universal enlightenment, how to walk upon this right path. Although they are still ordinary beings, they have already entered the path and are walking upon it. With this seed planted, they must continue walking upon it lifetime after lifetime. So, they have “realized great spiritual aspirations. They know this path that they can walk upon, if we speak of this in worldly terms, this “path” is one all people can walk upon one all people can pave and one all people can open up. We must aim in the right direction and bring purity to people’s hearts. What is difficult about this? So we must be mindful.

They are enlightened sentient beings who have great spiritual aspirations and advance diligently on the great path. It is because all these people seek the broad and great path. all these people are seeking the great path. They have selfless hearts; they have the greater self, not the limited self. They are willing to serve others and have become very mature. They have “great spiritual aspirations” to wholeheartedly benefit sentient beings. they share the same aspirations and serve others in unity.

The previous sutra passage says, “Nor do they remain at the stage of relying on the Human or Heavenly Being Vehicles.

“Nor do they remain at the stage of relying on the Human or heavenly Being Vehicles. They constantly take joy in profound wisdom and are without obstructuins. They also take joy in the teacahings of all Buddhas, advancing wholeheartedly and diligently to seek unsurpassed wisdom.

Sakyamuni Buddha introduced these people. Where did they come from? They emerge from the ground. Where do they abide? “[Is not] the Human or Heavenly being Vehicles. They constantly take joy in profound wisdom.” these people all seek profound wisdom. this wisdom has already entered their hearts. In worldly matters, they have no more hindrances or disputes, none at all.

So, “They also take joy in the teachings of all Buddhas. Even though they have already realized and understood [the teachings] and avoid all disputes while going among people without hindrances, they still constantly “seek the Dharma” and “transform sentient beings” among people nor existence, they walk the Middle Way. They “advance wholeheartedly and diligently continuously “seeking unsurpassed wisdom. These are all great Bodhisattvas.

Continuing on, the sutra states, “At that time, the World-Honored One, wishing to restate His meaning, spoke in verse. ‘Ajita, you must know that all these great Bodhisattvas have, since countless kalpas ago, cultivated and learned Buddha-wisdom. They are all people I have transformed and helped to form spiritual aspirations’.”

This passage is even clearer Sakyamuni Buddha now said to Maitreya Bodhisattva, “You must know that the assembly of Bodhisattvas that emerged from the ground, all these people, have been practicing for a very long time. Throughout countless kalpas, they have cultivated and learned Buddha-wisdom. “They are all people I have transformed. Ever since they formed aspirations, they have always been like this, constantly learning the Buddha’s wisdom.

Since countless kalpas ago, [they have] practiced and learned Buddha-wisdom. They are all people I have transformed and helped to form great spiritual aspirations: They practice and learn the Buddha’s wisdom. They are all people whom He personally taught and transformed and helped to form aspirations toward the unsurpassed great path.

Look, there are so many great Bodhisattvas who, over such a long time, have yet to master the Buddha’s wisdom; they ae still continuing to seek it. “They are all people I have transformed. I have personally taught all these people to this point. So, “He helped [them] form aspirations toward the unsurpassed great path. Lifetime after lifetime, He had inspired their hearts. They are like this in every lifetime, [walking] the same path. If they do not complete clearing the path today they will continue to clear it the next day. If they have yet to finish clearing the path in the lifetime, they will continue in the next. For countless lifetimes and countless days and months, they have done this, clearing and paving this path.

Continuing on, the sutra passage states, “These people are my children who abide in this world. They constantly engage in the practice of dhuta. Their resolve and joy is to be in tranquil places. They abandon the bustle and noise of the multitudes and do not take joy in speaking much”.

These people are all like this. What they engage in are practices of dhuta. They very willingly engage in ascetic practices. The Saha World is a world that must be endured. It is [filled with] suffering; it is a world of suffering. If people cannot endure it, then they will seek liberation from it. But these people are able to endure it. This is like how, among those who practiced the Buddha-Dharma, among the Buddha’s disciples, there were some who exclusively engaged in ascetic practices. For instance, what Venerable Kasyapa practiced was extreme asceticism. The practice of dhuta is extreme asceticism.

So, this was what the Buddha said; He praised these people. They were in the Saha World, this world of endurance, and in their practice, they were moreover willing to enter the most impoverished places and live with the most impoverished people, living the same way they do. They ate things that had already gone bad, things that no one wanted, that were thrown away. They did not go house to house seeking alms. When they needed alms, they went among the most impoverished and ate their worst food. They did this willingly; this is how they practiced. This is what the Buddha praised, that in this world that is so hard to endure, they would practice in this way that normal people cannot endure. They were willing to do this, live this way and practice in this manner. Thus, the Buddha praised them, “These people are my children who abide in this world”.

These people are my children who abide in this world: This verse explains how they take joy in tranquility and advance diligently. These are all the Buddha’s Dharma-children who abide in empty space and are different from the other Bodhisattvas.

This verse praises how they take joy in tranquil places. They are setting an example, putting [the teachings] into practice. They are able to endure [the Saha World]. They are not people who go to teach the Dharma everywhere, who cannot put it into action but only talk about it. There are people who cannot do it themselves; they only lecture and instruct others to do things, but are unwilling to give of themselves. Such people are numerous. The Buddha praised those who take action. Unless it is something important, they do not speak about it, but among people, they put it into action. This is how they engage in spiritual practice and serve as role models for spiritual practitioners. As role models, since they engage in spiritual practice, they have to close the door to their hearts, shut out their desires, greed, ignorance and anger. They have to close these doors of their hearts. So, this is ascetic practice. That they can endure and overcome suffering is because they have no ignorance, anger or greed.

The Buddha praised these people. So, “They take joy in tranquility and advance diligently. They are all the Buddha’s Dharma-children”. These people are the Buddha’s Dharma-children who understand His heart. So, Kasyapa “[saw the Buddha] hold up a flower, and he smiled”. The Buddha help up a flower, and Kasyapa comprehended [the meaning]. Thus, he was a Dharma-child. The Buddha transmitted the Dharma. These people “abide in empty space”. They abide in emptiness and do not wish to get reborn into heaven. They abide in the Middle Way, unattached to emptiness or existence; they [abide in] “wondrous existence in emptiness”. These people are not like normal Bodhisattvas. “They constantly engage in the practice of dhuta”.

They constantly engage in the practice of dhuta: Dhuta is Sanskrit. It means “to shake off”. Those who aspire to practice diligently are said to practice dhuta. They practice emptiness and tranquility, shaking off all defilements and afflictions.

“Dhuta” is Sanskrit. It means “to shake off”. This means to completely shake off all defilements. This is just like when we see chickens, ducks, cats and dogs. If they are wet, they give their whole body a shake, casting off the water and drying their bodies. It is similar to this. We must remove filth and defilements from our body and mind. Then, we will have none. In fact, the clothes they wear are often “cast off rags”. They are very dirty, and yet their hearts harbor no filth. Even when defiled things draw near to them, they completely eliminate the filth. They have not afflictions, ignorance or delusions within their hearts. This is “dhuta,” with which they can overcome all desirous thoughts.

They overcome everything. “Those who aspire to practice diligently are said to practice dhuta”. In other words, “They practice emptiness and tranquility”. The practice they normally engage in is “emptiness,” yet they earnestly engage in spiritual practice for the sake of returning to their nature of True Suchness, to “existence,” and reach the state of Buddhahood. This is “wondrous existence in emptiness”. They are role models among the people. All dusts and afflictions are completely gone; their minds are tranquil and clear. Their minds abide in emptiness and tranquility, and in this world, they are very diligent.

So, “Their resolve and joy is to be in tranquil places. They abandon the bustle and noise of the multitudes and do not take joy in speaking much”. They just do it.

Their resolve and joy is to be in tranquil places. They abandon the bustle and noise of the multitudes and do not take joy in speaking much: They resolve to and are happy to abide in empty and tranquil places, abandon the matters of the multitudes, and speak very little.

“They resolve to and are happy to abide in” means that they have resolved to and are very happy and very willing to abide in secluded or tranquil places. They do not want to go to very lively places. They do not want to go to very lively places. They do not. Still, they go among people. When you hear this, you must not misunderstand. Their hearts are tranquil. They are very tranquil. No matter the disturbance, it never enters their hearts. Look at the Buddha. Every time he spoke, there were thousands of people at the assembly. These great disciples did not depart. In every sutra we read, all of the great disciples were among people. So, we can say that their hearts always resided in tranquil and clear places. So, “They abandon the affairs of the multitude.” They let go of all of the troublesome matters of sentient beings. They completely let go of these afflictions and ignorance and these interpersonal conflicts. They let go of interpersonal conflicts and had no need to argue with people. Such disputes cannot be made clear even through discussion. It is better not to speak of them. So, they did not argue with others. To those who did not truly want to listen to the Dharma, they would not teach it, and so they were very quiet.

They would, however, put it into action. What they wanted to say was in accord with others’ capabilities. They used their experiences to explain the Dharma according to others’ capabilities. They were this type of Bodhisattvas. So, regarding the place they abided in, when these great Bodhisattvas arrived, they did not come from above where everyone often saw them. Maitreya Bodhisattva said, “I have never before seen these Bodhisattvas.” They rarely manifested. They quietly went among people, practicing the Middle Way. Such was this group of Bodhisattvas. Their hearts had for a long time safeguarded their aspirations toward the path. They were Bodhisattvas with great spiritual aspirations; they forever safeguarded [their aspirations]. Indeed! We also ought to have great spiritual aspirations and learn all Buddha-wisdom. We can never finish learning it. Since we can never finish learning it, we must make the most of our time and put effort into being mindful to remember the Dharma we listen to. We must actualize it in our lives. We must take the Dharma we hear and apply it in the actions of our lives. How can our body, speech, and mind abide in our vows for the long run? In the conditions we encounter, with “all-accomplishing wisdom,” we must use what [we have] to benefit people. We must put effort into being mindful and use our profound discerning wisdom to find a way to utilize [what we have] and so on. Lately, I have been constantly repeating myself. This is to help everyone remember, to engrave it into their minds, that this Dharma is in our thoughts and speech. Our body, speech and mind is inseparable from the Dharma. We all must apply the Dharma in our daily lives. This way, we will have a way to stand in the right direction. Then we will have a way to spend every minute and every second clearing the path. This is the spirit of paving the path. So, we must always be mindful!

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