Chapter III — Reverence for the Receptacle of the Perfections, which holds Immeasurable Good Qualities (RiBa)

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Chapter III

REVERENCE FOR THE RECEPTACLE OF THE PERFECTIONS, WHICH HOLDS IMMEASURABLE GOOD QUALITIES

1. WORLDLY ADVANTAGES OF PERFECT WISDOM

The Lord sees these Gods assembled and seated, and the monks, nuns, laymen and laywomen assembled and seated, and he speaks thus to these Gods: Mara and his hosts are unable to harm anyone taking up this perfection of wisdom, bearing this in mind, teaching, studying or spreading this. Humans and ghosts alike are unable to harm these. Nor do these die untimely deaths. Any deities setting out for full enlightenment, but not yet having hold of this perfection of wisdom, as these approach any person who does so and listen, these also take up, bear in mind, teach, study, and spread this perfection of wisdom. A person devoted to this perfection of wisdom certainly experiences no fear, one certainly never becomes stiff with fright, - whether one be in a forest, at the foot of a tree, in an empty shed, an open place, a road, a highway, or the woods, or on any ocean.

The Four Great Kings: It is wonderful, O Lord, any beings taking up, bearing in mind, etc., this perfection of wisdom, for these discipline beings in the three vehicles, and yet do not perceive any being. We, O Lord, do protect such a person.

Sakra, Brahma and other Gods likewise promise to protect any follower of perfect wisdom.

Sakra: It is wonderful, O Lord, by taking up, etc., this perfection of wisdom, one gains many advantages even here and now. Does one, taking up perfection of wisdom, take up all the six perfections?

The Lord: Yes. And further, by taking up, etc., perfection of wisdom, one gains advantages even here and now. Listen attentively, as I now teach you which ones these are.

So be it, Lord, replied the Gods.

The Lord: The quarrels, contentions and contradictions of any opposing this dharma simply vanish away; the intentions of opponents remains unfulfilled. It is a fact for any followers taken hold of by perfect wisdom such disputes simply vanish away, and do not abide. This is one advantage even here and now. Here, we have an herb, Maghi by name, which is a cure for all poison. Suppose a viper, famished, is to see a creature and pursue it, following the scent, in order to eat it; but now, this creature goes to a patch of Maghi and stands here, we know the smell of the herb causes the snake to turn back. As the healing quality of this herb is so powerful it overpowers the viper's poison, just so do quarrels, contentions and contradictions to which any follower of perfect wisdom is exposed, become stilled, appeased through this piercing flame of perfect wisdom, through its power, its strength, through impregnation with its power. These simply vanish, and neither grow, nor abide. And why? It is perfect wisdom which appeases all evil, - from [ordinary] greed to seizing on Nirvana (?) - and does not increase it. And these Gods and all these Buddhas, and all these Bodhisattvas, protect this follower of perfect wisdom. This is an advantage even here and now. And further, the speech of any follower of perfect wisdom is acceptable, soft, measured and adequate. Wrath and conceit do not overpower such as these. As one concentrates with diligence to reveal such facts in one's life, perfect wisdom tames and transforms this one. Wrath and conceit does not increase. Neither enmity nor ill will take hold of one such as this, not even a tendency towards these. One turns mindful and friendly. Such a one reflects: "As I foster ill will in myself, my faculties go to pieces, such that any features beneficial to any and all beings are consumed, and it is in any case quite illogical as I, being set out for full enlightenment and aspiring to train myself for such, might allow myself to come under the sway of wrath." In this way one quickly regains one's mindfulness. This is another advantage even here and now.

Sakra: It is wonderful how this perfection of wisdom is set up for the control and training of the Bodhisattvas.

The Lord: Well, even further Kausika, as any follower of perfect wisdom may go into battle, even to the very front of it, one such could not possibly lose one's life in it. It is impossible for one to lose one's life from the attack of somebody else. If someone strikes this one, with sword, or stick, or clod of earth, or anything else - one's body cannot be hit. As, a great lore is this perfection of wisdom; a lore without measure, a quite measureless lore, an unsurpassed lore, a lore which equals the unequalled is this perfection of wisdom. As one trains oneself in this lore, one is intent neither on disturbing one's own peace nor others. The Bodhisattva, the great being training in this lore, uncovers and reveals full enlightenment, gains the gnosis of all-knowing. This is another advantage here and now. Further, as here or wherever this perfection of wisdom is written down in a book, and is put up and worshipped, where it is taken up, borne in mind, etc., any beings so engaged can come to no harm, except as inclined toward such for past deeds. This is another advantage even here and now. Just the same too, Kausika, humans and ghosts go to the terrace of enlightenment, or to its neighborhood, or its interior, or to the foot of the tree of enlightenment, and cannot be hurt by humans or ghosts, or be injured by these, or taken possession of, even with the help of evil animal beings, except for in compensation for former deeds. In this, these past, future, and present Tathagatas come to uncover and reveal their enlightenment, and in this, promoting and revealing to these beings fearlessness, lack of hostility, lack of fright. Just so Kausika, any place in which one takes up, bears in mind, etc., perfection of wisdom, in it beings cannot be hurt by beings. Perfection of wisdom makes any spot of earth wherever it is into a true shrine for beings, - worthy of being worshipped and adored, - into a shelter for beings coming to it, a refuge, a place to rest and final relief. This is another advantage here and now.

2. THE CULT OF PERFECT WISDOM COMPARED WITH THE CULT OF THE BUDDHAS

Sakra: Suppose here are two persons. One of these two, a son or daughter of good family, has written down this perfection of wisdom, made a copy of it; this one now puts it up, and honors, reveres, worships, and adores this with heavenly flowers, incense, perfumes, wreaths, unguents, aromatic powders, strips of cloth, parasols, banners, bells, flags, with rows of lamps all round, and with manifold kinds of worship. The other deposits in Stupas relics of the Tathagata, having gone to Parinirvana; this one takes hold of these and preserves these; honors, worships and adores these with heavenly flowers, incense, etc., as the other does. Which one of these two, O Lord, would beget greater merit?

The Lord: I question you on this point, and you may answer to the best of your ability. The Tathagata, as acquiring and knowing full enlightenment or all-knowledge, in which practice does the Tathagata train in order for such an all-knowledge-personality to have been revealed?

Sakra: It is in just this perfection of wisdom the Tathagata acquires and knows full enlightenment or all-knowledge.

The Lord: So, the Tathagata does not derive any name from the fact one acquires this physical personality, but from the fact one acquires all-knowledge. And this all-knowledge of Tathagatas comes forth as a result of taking up just this perfection of wisdom. The physical personality of Tathagatas, on the other hand, is the result of the skill in means of perfection of wisdom. And this very sameness is a sure foundation for [acquisition of] cognition of all-knowing by others. Supported by this foundation the revelation of cognition of all-knowing takes place, the revelation of Buddha-body, of Dharma-body, and of Sangha-body. Acquisition of the physical personality is thus the cause of cognition of all-knowing. As a sure foundation of whatever cognition, it has for all beings, become a true shrine, worthy of being saluted respectfully, of being honored, revered and adored. Once thus gone to Parinirvana my relics also are worshipped. It is for this reason the person copying and worshipping perfection of wisdom begets a different type of merit. For, in doing so, this one worships cognition of all-knowing. The son or daughter of good family, having made a copy of the perfection of wisdom, and worshipping it, begets different merit. For by worshipping the perfection of wisdom one worships cognition of all-knowing.

Sakra: How can it be...people of Jambudvipa, who do not copy this perfection of wisdom, nor take it up, nor study it, nor worship it, do not know the Lord is teaching such as the cultivation of the perfection of wisdom is greatly profitable! How is it these ones are not aware what the Lord teaches supports the cultivation of the perfection of wisdom and brings great advantages, fruits and rewards! But these do not know this, these are not aware of this! These have no faith in it!

The Lord: What do you think, Kausika, how many of the people of Jambudvipa are endowed with perfect faith in the Buddha, the Dharma, the Sangha? [60]

Sakra: Only a few.

The Lord: So it is, Kausika. Only a few people of Jambudvipa are endowed with perfect faith in the Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha. Fewer than these few are ones attaining the fruits of a Streamwinner, and, after this, the fruit of a Once-Returner, or of a Never-Returner. Fewer still are any attaining Arhatship. Fewer still realize Pratyekabuddha-enlightenment. Fewer still raise any thoughts to full enlightenment. Fewer still are any, purifying by removing obstacles, and hereby raising thoughts to full enlightenment, and even now continuously strengthening such thoughts. Fewer still are any who, raising these thoughts thusly to full enlightenment, and strengthening such thoughts, now in addition dwell with vigor exerted. Fewer still are any who pursue meditation on perfection of wisdom. Fewer still are any coursing and applying perfection of wisdom. Fewer still are any who, coursing and striving toward perfection of wisdom, abide on any irreversible Bodhisattva-stage. Fewer still, coursing and striving steadily in perfection of wisdom, are any who come to know full enlightenment. Fewer still, coursing and striving in perfection of wisdom, do actually know full enlightenment. Now, as to any Bodhisattvas standing on any irreversible Bodhisattva-stage, knowing and revealing full enlightenment, these expound perfection of wisdom to other sons and daughters of good family who are earnestly intent, who train themselves and strive in perfection of wisdom. And these in their turn take up perfection of wisdom, study and worship it. Here are, on the other hand, countless beings who raise thoughts to enlightenment, who strengthened such thoughts of enlightenment, which course towards enlightenment, -- and perhaps just one or two of these can abide on any irreversible Bodhisattva-stage! For full enlightenment is difficult to reveal, and indeed is hard to come up to if one has inferior vigor, is slothful or displays characteristics defined as an inferior being, allows inferior thoughts, notions, intentions and wisdom. So, if someone wants quickly to know full enlightenment, one indefatigably and continually hears and studys this very perfection of wisdom. One comes to understand this...as Bodhisattvas Tathagatas train in perfection of wisdom; also oneself need train in such; for she is Tathagatas Teacher. In any case, upon any Tathagata's disappearance into final Nirvana, Bodhisattvas run back to this very perfection of wisdom. Here and now, Kausika, if someone builds, for the worship of the Tathagata once having disappeared into final Nirvana, many kotis of Stupas made of the seven precious things, enshrining herein such relics of Tathagatas, and all one's life honor these with flowers, etc., does this one on the strength of such actions, beget a great deal of merit?

Sakra: Indeed, such a one does, O Lord.

The Lord: Vastly different is any merit of someone truly believing in this perfection of wisdom; who, trustingly confiding in this, resolutely intent on this, serene in one's faith, with one's thoughts raised to enlightenment in earnest intent...hears this, learns this, bears this in mind, recites and studies this, spreads, demonstrates, explains, expounds and repeats this, illuminates this in detail to others, uncovers this meaning, investigates this with one's mind; and who, using wisdom to one's fullest extent, thoroughly examines this; who copies this, and preserves and stores away the copy so this good dharma lasts long, so this guide of the Buddhas might not be annihilated, so the good dharma might not disappear, so the Bodhisattvas, great beings might continue being assisted since this guide does not give out, - and who, finally, honors and worships this perfection of wisdom...well Kausika, vastly different is any merit of any devotee of perfection of wisdom compared not only with a person building many kotis of Stupas made of seven precious things, enshrining the relics of Tathagatas...it is even more vastly different than any merit of one completely filling the entire Jambudvipa with such Stupas. It is vastly different than any merit produced by all beings in a four-continent world system even as each single one of these built such a Stupa. Or, equally, as all beings in a small chiliocosm, or in a medium dichiliocosm, or in a great trichiliocosm were to do likewise. Or if, to put an imaginary case forth...all beings in any great trichiliocosm simultaneously became human beings, and each one of these built such a Stupa; and if each one of these, having built all such Stupas, and honoring such for an aeon or the remainder of an aeon; still, any devotee of perfection of wisdom has vastly different merit than any kind or amount of merit resulting from the effect of the meritorious deeds of all such beings as were to erect and worship those countless Stupas.

Sakra: So it is, O Lord. For any person honoring perfection of wisdom...in an absolute sense...such a one honors any and all past, future and present Buddhas in all world systems, which can all be simultaneously comprehended by only the cognition of a single Buddha. Such a one's merit is different than any kind or amount of merit of all beings in great trichiliocosms countless like the sands of the Ganges, even if each single being in these built a Stupa, and if each one of these having built all such Stupas, and were to honor these for an aeon or the remainder of an aeon.

3. PERFECT WISDOM, A GREAT SPELL

The Lord: So it is, Kausika. The merit of any devotee of perfection of wisdom is entirely different; such is immeasurable, incalculable, inconceivable, incomparable, illimitable. From perfection of wisdom all-knowledge of Tathagatas comes forth; from all-knowledge has come forth the cult of the relics of Tathagata. Here the difference in merit of any devotee of the perfection of wisdom bears no proportion at all to the accumulation of merit born from building Stupas, made of the seven precious things, enshrining the relics of Tathagatas.

Herein forty thousand gods in the assembly are saying to Sakra, the Chief of Gods: Sir! Do take up perfection of wisdom! The perfection of wisdom, Sir, take this up, recite such, study such and explain such for unlimited benefit of any and all beings!

The Lord: Kausika, do take up perfection of wisdom, recite, study and explain it! If the Asuras form any idea of fighting with the Gods of the Thirty-three, and if you, Kausika, have studied, and then recite and explain perfection of wisdom by bringing this to mind, the Asuras will drop such ideas.

Sakra: A great lore is this perfection of wisdom, a lore without measure, a quite measureless lore, an unsurpassed lore, an unequalled lore, a lore which equals the unequalled.

The Lord: So it is, Kausika. For it is due to this lore, i.e. perfection of wisdom, Buddhas of any and all times come to reveal and know full enlightenment. Due to this, Buddhas of any future know it. Thanks to this, Buddhas of any present know it. Thanks to this is it known and revealed. Thanks to just this lore ten wholesome ways of acting are revealed in the world, the four trances associated with the limbs of enlightenment, the four Unlimited associated with the limbs of enlightenment, the four formless attainments upheld by the limbs of enlightenment, the six super-knowledges associated with the limbs of enlightenment, in short the eighty-four thousand articles of dharma, cognition of Buddha, cognition of self-existent, inconceivable cognition. However, as at times it -seems- no Tathagatas are in the world...it is Bodhisattvas, -endowed with skill in means as a result of hearing the outpouring of perfection of wisdom in any past (whenever here are Buddhas), full of pity for beings, come into this world out of pity, -who foster in the world the ten wholesome ways of acting, the four trances as dissociated from the limbs of enlightenment, etc. to: the five super-knowledges as dissociated from the limbs of enlightenment. Just as thanks to the disk of the moon all the herbs, stars and constellations are illuminated according to their power and strength, so, as Tathagata -seem- to pass beyond and this good dharma -seems- to have disappeared, in any seeming absence of Tathagatas, whatever righteous, upright, outstanding, or wholesome life is conceived and manifested in worlds, all coming forth from the Bodhisattva, is brought forth by one, is spread from one's skill in means. But skill in means of Bodhisattvas is known as coming forth from perfection of wisdom. Moreover, any such as are devoted to perfection of wisdom, expect herein many advantages here and now.

Sakra: Which are these advantages?

The Lord: These devotees do not die any untimely death, nor from poison, or sword, or fire, or water, or staff, or violence. As these bring to mind, repeat, and apply this perfection of wisdom, the calamities which threaten these from kings and princes, from king's counselors and king's ministers, do not take place. As kings, etc., may try to do harm to these who again and again bring to mind, repeat and apply perfection of wisdom, such kings, etc., do not succeed; for perfection of wisdom upholds such devotees. Although kings, etc., may approach these ones with harmful intent, they instead decide to greet these, and to converse. For this perfection of wisdom entails an attitude of friendliness and compassion amongst and within all beings. Herein, even though any devotee of the perfection of wisdom may be in the middle of a wilderness infested with venomous vipers, neither beings nor ghosts can harm these, except as in a return for past deeds.

Hereupon one hundred Wanderers of other sects approached the Lord with hostile intent. Sakra, Chief of Gods, perceived these Wanderers from afar, and he reflected: Surely, these Wanderers of other sects are approaching the Lord with hostile intent. Let me now recall as much of this perfection of wisdom as I have learned from the Lord, bring it to mind, repeat, apply and spread it, so these Wanderers cannot approach the Lord, and the preaching of this perfection of wisdom may not be interrupted.

Hereupon, Sakra, Chief of Gods, recalls as much of this perfection of wisdom as he is learning from the Lord, brings it to mind, repeats, applies and spreads it. The Wanderers of other sects hereupon reverently saluted the Lord from afar, and went off on their way.

So, now it occurred to the Venerable Sariputra: For what reason do these heretical Wanderers reverently salute the Lord from afar, and now depart on their way?

The Lord: As Sakra, Chief of Gods, perceived the thoughts of such hostile Wanderers of other sects, he recalled this perfection of wisdom, brought it to mind, repeated, applied, and spread it, with the object of turning back the Wanderers of other sects who wanted to quarrel, dispute and obstruct, and prevented these from approaching this place the perfection of wisdom is being taught. And I have granted permission to Indra, Chief of Gods. I saw not even one pure dharma in these Wanderers. They all wanted to approach with hostile intent, with thoughts of enmity.

Hereupon it occurred to Mara, the Evil One: The four assemblies of Tathagata are assembled, and seated face to face with Tathagata. Face to face with Tathagata these Gods of the realm of sense-desire and of the realm of form are sure to be predicted in this assembly as Bodhisattvas to full enlightenment. Let me now approach to blind them. - Herein Mara conjured up a fourfold army, and is moving towards the place the Lord is.

Now, again it occurs to Sakra, chief of gods: Surely, I can see this is Mara, the Evil One, who has conjured up a fourfold army moving towards the place the Lord is. But the array of this army is not the array of King Bimbisara's army, nor of King Prasenajit's army, not of the army of the Sakyas or of the Licchavins. It is seen for a long time Mara the Evil One pursues the Lord, looking for any chance to enter, searching for a chance to enter, intent on hurting beings. I now recall this perfection of wisdom, bring it to mind, repeat, apply and spread it. Hereupon Sakra recalls just this perfection of wisdom, brought it to mind, repeated, applied and spread it. Immediately Mara, the Evil One, is seen as turning back again, and going on his way.

The Gods of the Thirty-three conjured up heavenly Mandarava flowers, flew through the air, and scattered these over the Lord. Now in triumph these cry: "For a long time surely is this perfection of wisdom coming to these people of Jambudvipa!" Seizing more Mandarava flowers, these scattered and strewed these over the Lord, and said: "It is seen how Mara and his host have no chance to enter any beings who preach and develop this perfection of wisdom, or which course in it. Any beings hearing and studying perfection of wisdom are endowed with no small wholesome root. These who come to hear of this perfection of wisdom fulfill duties also under the Jinas of other times. How much more so any studying and repeating it who are trained in Thusness progress to such and make endeavours regarding such; these are people honoring Tathagatas. For it is in this perfection of wisdom one searches for all-knowledge. Just as all jewels are brought forth by a great ocean, and are searched for through it, just so the great jewel of all-knowledge of Tathagatas is searched for through the great ocean of perfection of wisdom."

The Lord: So it is, Kausika. It is from great oceans of perfection of wisdom the great jewel of all-knowledge of Tathagatas comes forth.

4. PERFECT WISDOM, AND THE OTHER PERFECTIONS

Ananda: The Lord does not praise perfection of giving, nor any of the first five perfections; he does not proclaim their name. Only perfection of wisdom does the Lord praise, its name alone he proclaims.

The Lord: So it is, Ananda. For perfection of wisdom controls the five perfections. What do you think, Ananda, can giving - undedicated to all-knowledge be called perfect giving?

Ananda: No, Lord.

The Lord: The same is true of the other perfections. What do you think, Ananda, is wisdom inconceivable which turns over the wholesome roots by the dedication of these to all-knowledge?

Ananda: Yes, it is inconceivable, completely inconceivable.

The Lord: Perfection of wisdom is given it's name by us from supreme excellence [paramatvat]. Through perfection of wisdom these wholesome roots, dedicated to all-knowledge are given the name of 'perfections.' It is due to this dedication of wholesome roots to all-knowledge this perfection of wisdom controls, guides and leads the five perfections. The five perfections are in this manner contained in this perfection of wisdom, and the term 'perfection of wisdom' is just a synonym for the fulfilling of all six perfections. In consequence, as perfection of wisdom is proclaimed, all six perfections are proclaimed. Just as gems, scattered about in the great earth, grow as all conditions are favorable; and the great earth is their support, and these grow supported by the great earth; even so, embodied in perfection of wisdom, the five perfections rest in all-knowledge, these grow supported by perfection of wisdom; and as upheld by perfection of wisdom are these given the name of 'perfections.' So, it is just this perfection of wisdom controling, guiding and leading these five perfections.

5. FURTHER ADVANTAGES FROM PERFECT WISDOM

Sakra: So far the Tathagata has not proclaimed all the qualities of perfection of wisdom, qualities which one acquires by learning, studying and repeating perfection of wisdom. For how else could the limited amount of perfection of wisdom which I learned from the Lord, have spread when just now heretics and Mara were turned away?

The Lord: So it is, Kausika. Moreover, not only by learning, studying, and repeating perfection of wisdom does one develop these qualities, but also one who is reverent towards, and concentrating on a copy of this also is taught, and develops advantages here and now. [83]

Sakra: I also protect ones who are reverent towards and concentrating on a copy of this perfection of wisdom, and still more so ones who in addition learn, study and repeat this.

The Lord: Well said, Kausika. Moreover, as anyone repeats this perfection of wisdom, many hundreds of Gods come near, many thousands, many hundreds of thousands of Gods, so as to listen to Dharma. And, as these hear Dharma, these Gods want to induce a readiness to speak in one speaking of Dharma. Even when one may not be willing to talk, these Gods still expect, through their respect for Dharma, a readiness to speak is induced in such a one as this, and this one now feels an urge to expound this. This again is another quality which someone acquires just here and now by learning, studying, and repeating perfection of wisdom. Moreover, the minds of any discoursing on this perfection of wisdom remain uncowed in front of these four assemblies. These have no fear of being plied with questions from hostile persons. For perfection of wisdom protects these ones. Immersed in perfection of wisdom one does not see the hostility, nor any who act with hostility, nor any who want to be hostile. In this way upheld by perfection of wisdom, one remains unaffected by censure and fear. These qualities also someone acquires just here and now while learning, studying and repeating this perfection of wisdom. In addition, one is dear to one's mother and father, to friends, relatives and kinsmen, to Shramanas and Brahmanas. One is competent and capable of refuting, in accordance with Dharma, any counter-arguments which may arise, and is able to deal with counter-questions. These qualities also someone acquires just here and now while learning, studying and repeating perfection of wisdom. Moreover, Kausika, among the Gods of the Four Great Kings, any Gods setting out for full enlightenment make up their minds to come to this place here as someone puts up a copy of perfection of wisdom, and is reverent toward and concentrated in this. These come, look upon the copy of this perfection of wisdom, salute this respectfully, pay homage to this, learn, study and repeat this. So also do these depart again. And this applies to all Gods, up to even the Highest of Gods. And any son or daughter of good family pray the Gods, Nagas, Yakshas, Gandharvas, Asuras, Garudas, Kinnaras, Mahoragas, beings and ghosts, in any ten directions in countless world systems, do, with the help of this book, see perfection of wisdom, salute respectfully, pay homage, learn, study and repeat such as it is; as also these return to their respective worlds; and these ones also give to any ones abiding in these places as well, just this gift of dharma. Do not however think, Kausika, only in this four continent world, the Gods of the realm of sense-desire and of the realm of form, who set out for full enlightenment decide to come to this place. Not so, as well, Kausika, do you view it! No, all the Gods in the great trichiliocosm, setting out for full enlightenment, decide to come to this place. These come, look upon a copy of this perfection of wisdom, salute it respectfully, pay homage to it, learn, study and repeat it. Moreover, the house, room or palace of any devotee of perfection of wisdom is well guarded. No one does harm to such as these, except as in return for past deeds. This is another quality which one acquires just here and now. For very powerful Gods, and even other supernatural beings, decide to come to this place.

Sakra: How does one know these Gods, or even other supernatural beings, have come to this place to hear, etc., perfection of wisdom?

The Lord: As one perceives anywhere a sublime radiance or smells a superhuman odor not smelled before, now one can know for certain a God, or other supernatural being is present, is come near. Further, clean and pure habits attract such Gods, etc., and makes them enraptured, overjoyed, full of zest and gladness. But divinities of minor power, having before occupied such a place as these come to manifest, decide to leave it. For these cannot endure the splendor, majesty and dignity of such very powerful Gods, etc. As these very powerful Gods, etc., decide to come to such a one repeatedly, any such devotee of perfection of wisdom gains an abundance of serene faith. This is another quality which any son or daughter of a good family acquires just here and now. Further on, one does not form any unclean or impure habits within the unbound circumference of this abode of guidance to Dharma; otherwise one's deep respect for it remains incomplete. Moreover, any devotee of the perfection of wisdom does not become fatigued in either body or mind. At ease one lies down, at ease one walks about. In one's sleep one beholds no evil dreams. As one sees anything in one's dreams, one will just see the Tathagatas, or Stupas, or Bodhisattvas, or Disciples of the Tathagata. As one hears sounds, one hears just the sound of perfections and the wings to enlightenment. One just sees the trees of enlightenment; and underneath these, the Tathagatas, as these awaken to full enlightenment. And likewise one sees how the fully Enlightened turn the wheel of dharma. And many Bodhisattvas one beholds, chanting just this perfection of wisdom, delighted by its chorus, which proclaims how all-knowledge is gained, how the Buddha-field is purified. One is shown this action of skill in means. One hears the sublime sound of full enlightenment of these Buddhas, the Lords: "In this direction, in this part of the world, in this world system, under this name, the Tathagatas demonstrate Dharma, surrounded and accompanied by many thousands of Bodhisattvas and Disciples, nay by many hundreds of thousands of niyutas of kotis of Bodhisattvas and Disciples." As one beholds such dreams, one sleeps at ease, one awakens at ease. Even as food is thrown into it, one's body still feels at ease and exceedingly light. No trend of thought arises in this one from excessive eagerness of food. One takes only a mild interest in food. A devotee of perfection of wisdom has no strong desire for food, and only a mild interest in it, even as a monk, who practices Yoga, and who emerged from trance, -merely as one's thoughts overflow with other interests. For to the extent one gives oneself up to devotion to development of perfection of wisdom, to such extent do heavenly beings provide one with heavenly food. These qualities also does one acquire here and now. But again, Kausika, as someone makes a copy of perfection of wisdom, and is reverent towards and concentrated in it, but does not learn, study, repeat and apply this; and as someone else truly believes in the perfection of wisdom, trustingly confides in it, and, resolutely intent on it, serene in one's faith, one's thoughts raised toward enlightenment, in earnest intent, hears, learns, bears in mind, recites and studies such as this perfection of wisdom provides for, spreads, demonstrates, explains, expounds and repeats such as this is, illuminates it in detail for others, uncovers meaning, investigates with one's mind, and, using one's wisdom to the fullest, thoroughly examines, copies, and preserves and stores away the copy, so such good dharma lasts long, so this guide of Tathagatas might not be annihilated, so good dharma does not disappear, so Bodhisattvas, these great beings, continue to be assisted, since their guide does not fail, - and finally, honors and is reverent toward and concentrated in this perfection of wisdom; well, Kausika, this latter begets vastly different merit. Any aspiring to acquire these distinguished qualities here and now, will diligently imitate such a one as this, and these truly believe in perfection of wisdom, etc., as their guide does not fail. One resolves to share this with any aspiring to such. So this great eye of this Guide of Buddhas does not fail, neither for one such as this, nor for others in quest of virtue. In addition this perfection of wisdom at all times is honored and held in concentrated reverence.


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