Disclaimer: The translations are not official nor endorsed by 2OR, so please just treat it as a ‘fan-based’ translation. The Buddha-Dharma is profound. No matter how you convey it, it won’t be completely perfect. Because the Buddha-Dharma is an experience, it’s an awakening 【佛法深奥无比，怎么写，都不会是究竟圆满。佛法是一种悟】. Please enjoy, and I hope it serves as a good filler until the official English version comes out.
In this chapter, Master shall discuss the utmost importance of ‘giving’ of the Four Boundless States (Loving Kindness, Compassion, Empathetic Joy and Giving). Of these four boundless states, giving is relatively difficult to do compared to the other three. That’s because everybody harbours a degree of selfishness and don’t know why to give, only to take. That’s why one must use the act of giving to treat their greed. If you constantly think about making yourself gain more, you should give things to others more regularly. If you are unwilling to go out and help others, you should devote or give out some of your time to help others. If you are reluctant to spend money on others, you should use some of your money to perform life liberations. Many people are unwilling to spend on performing life liberations and think that it’s a waste of money. These kinds of people find it difficult to do the act of giving.
The act of giving is to put one’s principles into action. You must understand that if you want to help others, you must give out your time, give out your money, and give out your emotion. You must know how to use the act of giving to treat your greed. You must know that you should be grateful to Guan Yin Bodhisattva for blessing you with the many conveniences to help you cultivate. Buddhists must not only act upon the four boundless states but also know how to love others, not be jealous of others, and have knowledge of the various ways to help others. All of this is considered a method of convenience. A person’s wealth, their partner, their way of living, their property, their location, their belongs, and food are all tools that could be used for the act of giving. In other words, money and wealth can be given away. One’s partner can be given away. This is not meant literally, but one can give away their time to be with their partner and instead use that time to save more people.
You currently possess such a great Buddha-Dharma; you must learn how to share it with others. To cultivate, not for the sake of fame and wealth, and you verify the saying from Gautama Buddha that there is no giver nor receiver. What it means is that you’ve reached the level of spirituality where you don’t feel that you’re giving although you’re giving. Who’s giving? You’re already a Bodhisattva. Shouldn’t it be natural that you give? Who’s giving? You aren’t proud or arrogant; you don’t feel like you’re giving anything away, so what are you giving away? You gave nothing away. Since there’s no giver, there’s no receiver. What others get from you instead are your compassion and love. Where does it come from? It comes from your Buddha-nature and inherent nature. That’s why there’s no giver or receiver. In reality, it is but a natural reaction of your inherent nature, conscience and compassion. Since there is nothing to give in this world, and things come and go, how could we be obsessed with money and wealth? Think about it, we come into this world and die, come again and die again; it’s the same as not coming nor going. Don’t be obsessed with money and wealth. They shouldn’t be subjected to your obsession. It’s meaningless.
Buddhists should cultivate to the point where what they say and act according to the Dharma comes naturally. One must attain the state of suchness. What is suchness? In other words, you must cultivate your mind to the point of your true essence. You must cultivate sincerely and truly, not falsely. False cultivation is meaningless. There was once a fellow practitioner who worked as a convenor. He went to visit Master and attended one of his classes. Afterwards, he went around the city to sightsee and have fun. These kinds of people are cultivating falsely. How would their career be smooth-sailing? When he saw Master, he even asked how was his career. What could Master say?
If you can’t cultivate the state of suchness, then it indicates that self-nature is deviating away from itself. So, what path is your cultivation leading you? If one can’t cultivate their inherent nature and loses it instead, then it’s like losing your true self. In plain terms, it’s like a person losing their conscience after cultivating and can’t find it. Master asks you, during the Second World War, did all those troops have a conscience? If they possessed their self-nature, then they should know what they should be doing. But the problem was that they lost their self-nature. They’re pitiful. In the end, they will be killed by others. If you are someone who doesn’t have a self-nature, you will go to the Hell Realm, the Hungry Ghost Realm or the Animal Realm. When a person doesn’t have a conscience, they will commit deeds that will lead them to the Hell Realm, the Hungry Ghost Realm or the Animal Realm.
Master hopes that you don’t behave like animals in your daily life, nor behave like the sentient beings in the Hungry Ghost Realm, or be punished in the Hell Realm. ‘You want to leave but can’t. You want to improve, but you can’t’. In other words, when you leave your inherent nature and self-nature and lose your conscience, you can’t leave the lower realms even if you wanted to. After you enter these realms, even if you want to improve, but you can’t. Master tells you, there is no time for you to repent there. That’s how scary it is. When a person trips into these lower realms, they basically lose the chance to be reborn as a human. In the Human Realm, if a person had killed and descended into the Hell Realm, even if that murderer was permitted to leave, where could they go?
He’s a murderer. Others would be frightened by them. If a person was a rapist, and behaved like an animal and was sentenced to twenty years of imprisonment. Even if they were let out, who would be willing to be friends with them? In the Human Realm, those who bully and abuse others will descend into the Hungry Ghost Realm after their death. If their evil was known to others, do they have a chance for others to understand them? That’s why - ‘You want to leave but can’t. You want to improve, but you can’t’. After you enter into these lower realms, you have no way to escape. Master constantly tries to keep tabs on you, so you don’t descend. If you commit misdeeds, you will be heading towards the three unwholesome realms. You must look out for yourself.
You must cultivate actions of pureness. Be mindful of your every action and think to yourself, “Did I behave in a way that might lead me to the Animal Realm, Hungry Ghost Realm or Hell Realm?” Some women don’t behave like one, while some men don’t behave like one. You must properly take control of your thoughts and desires. If you could constantly cultivate a mind of purity, your Buddha-nature would manifest. If your mind is peaceful, then the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas will come. If your mind is not peaceful, then they will leave you. That’s because everybody harbours the three poisons (greed, hatred and delusion). These three poisons will seriously obstruct your Buddha-nature. In other words, they will cause you to lose your inherent kindness and conscience. For example, that person was originally very kind. But because they became greedy, so they’ve lost it. As their greed grows, they won’t even show mercy to impoverished people. They will even try to cheat and take what little they have out of them.
Some people harbours so much hate that they have forgotten that they once strived to be Bodhisattvas. In the end, they behave like demons, targeting others and not forgiving them, just like terrorists who constantly resent others and impede their Buddha-nature in the process. There are also some people are who are so foolish that they’ve lost their wisdom of kindness. They act like madmen constantly obsessed with something and crave success in achieving it. “I saw something that I really like, and though I have it, I still want it.” In the end, you become a demon in action and mind. The demons that reside within the mind are called ‘inner demons’.