Chapter IX — Praise (RiBa)
Perfect Wisdom Perfectly Pure
Subhuti: To call this 'perfect wisdom,' O Lord, is merely giving this a name. And what this name corresponds to cannot be got at. One speaks of a 'name' with reference to any merely nominal entity. Even perfection of wisdom cannot be found or got at. In so far as this is a word, in so far is this perfect wisdom; in so far as this is perfect wisdom, in so far is this a word. No duality of dharmas between these two can either be found or got at. For what reason does Maitreya, the Bodhisattva, the great being, as he wins the supreme enlightenment, preach just this very same perfection of wisdom at this very spot of earth in just these same words?
The Lord: The reason is Maitreya will give cause to this fading away of any and all obscurations to his understanding, fully enlightened, the fact these skandhas are neither permanent nor impermanent, for such are neither bound nor freed, as these are absolutely pure.
Subhuti: Perfectly pure indeed is perfection of wisdom.
The Lord: Perfect wisdom is perfectly pure as any and all skandhas are pure, and so, do to non-production are perfectly pure, their non-stopping, their non-defilement and their non-purification. This is pure as space is pure and skandhas are stainless, and any defiling forces cannot in truth take hold of such as these. Perfect wisdom is perfectly pure for, like space or an echo, such is unutterable, incommunicable, and offers no basis for apprehension. Such is perfectly pure as being not covered by any dharma, either stained or stainless.
Effects of Perfect Wisdom
Subhuti: It is indeed a great gain to these sons and daughters of good family such as these even come to hear of such perfection of wisdom. How much greater the gain as these take up, bear in mind, recite, study, spread, teach, explain and master this. Their eyes, ears, nose, tongues and bodies come to be free from disease, and their minds free from stupefaction. These do not die any violent death. Many thousands of Gods follow closely behind. Whenever, on the eight, fourteenth and fifteenth day, one talks Dharma, any son or daughter of good family teaches perfection of wisdom, so here as well one begets a great deal of merit.
The Lord: So it is, Subhuti. Many thousands of Gods, Subhuti, follow closely behind this son or daughter of good family, and many thousands of Gods come to this place as perfect wisdom is being elucidated and revealed. Desirous of hearing Dharma, these, all of these, protect any preacher of Dharma who teaches perfection of wisdom to any with right intentions and the propensity to listen and learn. For perfect wisdom is most precious in the world with its Gods, beings and Asuras. This also is a reason why such a person begets a different type of merit than any which might be considered as great merit. On the other hand, here also are many obstacles to this deep perfection of wisdom being written, taken up, borne in mind, recited, studied, spread, developed, explained and repeated. For very precious things provoke much hostility. The more excellent such teachings are, the more violent the hostility. But this is most precious in entire world systems, this perfection of wisdom which is being undertaken for the benefit and happiness of these worlds by showing all dharmas as being neither produced nor destroyed, neither defiled nor purified. And perfect wisdom does not cling to any dharma, nor defile any dharma, nor take hold of any dharma. Any and all dharmas neither exist nor are any got at. As it is not apprehended perfection of wisdom is without any stain. 'To be free from stains,' is the same thing as perfect wisdom and it is the same thing such as skandhas are free from stains as perfect wisdom is without any stain. A Bodhisattva courses in perfect wisdom if one does not perceive even this, for beyond perception and concepts is perfect wisdom. Moreover, this perfection of wisdom neither enters nor places anything like 'itself' into any dharma, neither reveals nor defines any dharma, and neither brings in any dharma nor carries one away.
The Second Turning of the Wheel of Dharma
So, hereupon a great many thousands of Gods in this intermediate realm call out aloud with cries of joy, waving their garments, and saying: We now indeed see this second turning of the wheel of dharma taking place in Jambudvipa!
The Lord: This, Subhuti, is not the second turning of the wheel of dharma. No dharma can be turned forwards or backwards. Just this is a Bodhisattva's perfection of wisdom...just this approaches the pinnacle of perception and concept as this great perfection. This is beyond any such thing as turning.
Subhuti: This is a great perfection of any Bodhisattva who, unattached to all dharmas, wants to know full enlightenment, and who yet is not enlightened about any dharma, or who turns the wheel of dharma and yet does not show up any dharma. For no dharma is here got at, no dharma is indicated, and no dharma moves on any dharma. For absolutely, reproduction is alien to all dharmas. Nor does, nor can any dharma turn back any other dharma. From the beginningless beginning any and all dharmas are not being reproduced, since their essential nature is isolated.
The Lord: So it is, Subhuti. For emptiness does neither proceed nor recede, and such holds good also for the Signless and the Wishless. To demonstrate this is to demonstrate all dharmas. But no one has demonstrated this, no one has heard this, no one has received this, and no one realizes this, in this past, present or future. Nor by this demonstration of dharma does anyone ever go to Nirvana. Nor by this demonstration of dharma has anyone ever been made worthy of gifts.
Modes and Qualities of Perfect Wisdom
Subhuti: This is perfection of such as no-thing whatsoever is not, as space is not something which is. Perfection of wisdom equals any such as unequalled, dharmas are not apprehended. Perfection of wisdom is isolated, on account of absolute emptiness. Perfection of wisdom cannot be crushed, as dharmas are not apprehended. Perfection of wisdom is trackless, as both body and mind are absent. Perfection of wisdom has no own-being, neither comes nor goes. Perfection of wisdom is inexpressible, as any dharmas are not discriminated. Perfection of wisdom is nameless, as any skandhas whatsoever cannot be apprehended. Perfection of wisdom does not go away, as having not come hither, no dharma ever goes away. One cannot partake of this perfection of wisdom, as no dharma can be seized. Perfection of wisdom is inexhaustible, as indelible to inexhaustible dharma. Perfection of wisdom has no genesis, as no dharma ever really comes about. Perfection of wisdom does nothing, as no doer can be apprehended. Perfection of wisdom does not generate [cognize] anything, as any and all dharmas are without self. Perfection of wisdom does not pass on, as here is no genesis of decease or rebirth. Perfection of wisdom does not discipline, as this past, future and present periods are not apprehended. Perfection of wisdom is as a dream, an echo, a reflected image, a mirage, or an illusion, and is indicated as precision of non-production. Perfection of wisdom is free from defilement, as greed, hate, and delusion have no own-being. Perfection of wisdom knows no purification, as no possible receptacle [which might have to be purified] can be apprehended. Perfection of wisdom is spotless, as space is spotless. Perfection of wisdom is free from impediments, as spontaneously present throughout and beyond any and all mental attitudes to dharmas. Perfection of wisdom has no mental attitude, as it is imperturbable. Perfection of wisdom is unshakeable, as is stability of any realm of dharma. Perfection of wisdom knows no greed, as here is no falseness in dharmas. Perfection of wisdom does not rise up, as here is no discrimination in dharmas. Perfection of wisdom is quiet, as no sign is apprehended as all dharmas. Perfection of wisdom is faultless, as perfection of all virtues. Perfection of wisdom is undefiled, as imagination is something which is not. Neither living nor dying being is found as perfection of wisdom, as the reality-limit. Perfection of wisdom is unlimited, as the manifestation of all dharmas does not rise up. Perfection of wisdom does not follow after duality of opposites, as such does not settle down in any or all dharmas. Perfection of wisdom is undifferentiated, as all dharmas are still but speciously indicated. Perfection of wisdom is untarnished, as such is free from any longing for some jewel of Disciples and Pratyekabuddhas. Perfection of wisdom is undiscriminated, as this is basic identity to all which is discriminated. Perfection of wisdom is infinite, as any nature of dharma is unlimited. Perfection of wisdom is unattached, as this is non-attachment to all dharmas. Perfection of wisdom is unconditioned, as all dharmas are impermanent and merely an indication of such as this is. Perfection of wisdom is as space, as any nature of dharma is identical as impermanence. Perfection of wisdom is Empty, as any or all dharmas are not apprehended. Perfection of wisdom is not-self, as here is no settling down in any or all dharmas. Perfection of wisdom is markless, as here is no reproduction in dharmas.
Perfection of this is of total emptiness, as endless and boundless. Perfection of this is as the wings of enlightenment, such as is pillars of mindfulness, etc., as these cannot be apprehended. This is perfection of Emptiness, of the Signless, of the Wishless, as the three doors to deliverance cannot be apprehended. This is perfection of the eight deliverances, as these cannot be apprehended. This is perfection of the nine successive stations, as the first trance, etc., cannot be apprehended. This is perfection of the four Truths, as ill, old age and death cannot be apprehended. This is perfection of the ten perfections, as giving, etc., cannot be apprehended. This is perfection of the ten powers, as such cannot be crushed. This is perfection of the four grounds of self-confidence, as absolutely such cannot be cowed. This is perfection of the analytical knowledges, as such is unobstructed when unattached to all-knowledge. This is perfection of all the special Buddha-dharmas, as these transcend all counting. This is perfection of Suchness as Tathagatas, as here is no falseness in any and all dharmas. This is perfection of any as Self-existent, as all dharmas have not own-being. Perfection of wisdom is perfection of cognition of all-knowing, as such is aware within all of any modes of any own-being of all dharma.
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