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V 10-29 The Nature of Emptiness is the Buddhist’s Karmic Cause 空性是佛子的因

Disclaimer: My translations are not official nor endorsed by 2OR, so please just treat it as a ‘fan-based’ translation based on my understanding of his teachings. 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】. I am not an enlightened being like Master Lu, but I will treat his teachings with my utmost respect and do my best to convey and translate it to the best of my (limited) abilities for my friends and people who can’t read Chinese. Please enjoy, and I hope it serves as a good filler until the official English version comes out.

师父想起小时候下象棋的事情,师父跟大人下象棋, 师父想好了几步棋,我就走啊走,我以为这条路很长, 我可以动脑筋下十五到二十分钟就把对方将死,没想到, 对方一个小兵在你边上一步一步偷偷摸摸地往前冲,你 长着两只眼睛你就是看不见,过一会儿他突然之间将你 了,你的这盘棋就输掉了。

Master recalled the time that he played chess when he was small. His opponent was an adult. He thought of the potential steps that would be taken later; he thought that he still had a lot of steps left. He thought that in 15 to 20 minutes, he would be able to checkmate his opponent. But unexpectedly, the opponent’s pawn sneakily marched forward a step at a time, while Master ignored it, thinking that it wouldn’t accomplish anything, and finally checkmated him, and he lost.

我们现在的生命就像下象棋 一样,你给自己铺设一条光明大道,慢慢地往前走,以 为你还可以活很长,你们就是忘记了我们的寿命是有限 的,所以我们拼命地在为自己铸造一个金塔、宝塔,让 自己能够在人生走到塔顶,但是有多少人塔还没有造好, 人先亡,这就是人算不如天算,这就是为什么很多人突 然之间就没有了。要在心中铸造永生,实际上就是自己 心中要知道,你的人生是苦短的,要赶紧修心,不要耽误自己的一生。

The life that we live in is just like a chess game. You envision that the future is bright, and you work hard towards it, thinking that you still have many years to live. But you forget that our lifespan is limited. That’s why you work so hard trying to build yourself a great pyramid or tower so that you will reach the very peak of your existence. But in reality, many people have died before they have reached the peak of their envisioned future. That’s why there’s a saying that ‘God’s plan supersedes our own’, it’s because many things suddenly happen in life that we least expect it to happen. One must possess an aim to accomplish the eternal within their mind. In other words, one must understand that life is hard and short. Therefore, one must hurry in their cultivation of the mind, and don’t waste their life.

很多人说,我怕困难,我每天要起床这么早,我很 难过,我很痛苦,师父告诉你们,人只要想到会死,你 还怕困难吗?因为我们现在是学佛人,我们不怕死,因 为我们要到天上去,我们怎么还怕困难呢?让你们多付 出一点,就觉得困难,这么早起来念经,观音堂的菩萨 等着你们,怎么没人来呢?来了也是晃晃悠悠的,你们 想一想,有菩萨等着你们,你们有这么好的机会,人生 有多少机会让你们心情愉快地菩萨就在眼前让你们拜?

Many people say that they’re afraid of hardships. To force themselves to get out of their bed so early in the morning is hard. Master tells you that if you think that you will eventually die, would you still be afraid of hardships? As Buddhists, we aren’t afraid of death. That’s because we want to go to heaven, so how would we be afraid of hardships? You already feel troubled when somebody asks you to do a bit more. When you wake up early to recite sutras, Guan Yin Bodhisattva is waiting for you. How would there be nobody coming? When people do come, they are always in a rush. Think about it; there are Bodhisattvas waiting for you, you have such a good opportunity. How many chances are there in life that you would be able to pray to the Bodhisattvas with a happy state of mind?

所以,要用佛法的精神和智慧逃出人间死神的魔掌。师父问你们,你们很多人都怕下面的鬼来拉你们,那怎么 样让他们不来拉你们呢?就要拼命地做功德,拼命地做 好事,对不对?善有善报,他就不来拉你了,如果你天 天造业,他很快就把你带走了。你想逃出来,最好的方 法就是不做坏事,菩萨叫你们众善奉行,诸恶莫作,菩 萨哪句话说得不对啊?

That’s why one must use the essence and wisdom of the Buddha Dharma to escape from the grasp of death. Many of you are afraid of being dragged away by ghosts, so how do you stop them from dragging you? You must make efforts to perform meritorious and wholesome deeds, am I right? If you do good, then they won’t come for you. If you constantly commit unwholesome deeds, then they will come for you sooner. If you want to escape, the best method is to cease doing all unwholesome deeds. The Bodhisattvas have already advised you to cultivate all benevolence and refrain from all evil. Do Bodhisattvas ever give poor advice?

生命的意义不在于你一生的成就,或者说你一生很 幸福,这都是没有意义的,人生最重要的意义在于死后 的归宿,你到底到哪里去?这是一个大问题。你可以告 诉别人,我一生有多么幸福,我一生有多少成就,如果 你老觉得自己在人间幸福,想想你能幸福几年?想想离 要死的时候很快啊。很多人在读书的时候心想早点毕业, 我能够工作就好了;工作很多年了,很多人说,我能够 结婚就好了;结婚了,想着孩子大点就好了,孩子大了, 时间过得很快啊。

The meaning of your life is not derived from your accomplishments, nor is it derived from how happy you are, all of it is meaningless. The greatest meaning of your life is derived from your afterlife, where will you go after death? This is a serious question. You can tell others how blessed your life is and how accomplished you are. But if you keep thinking how great your life is, then how many more years would it continue that way? One should think about how quickly death will arrive. When people were still studying in school, they wished that they could graduate sooner and get a job. After they have worked for many years, they then wish they could get married. Then after marriage, they wish that their children could grow up and become independent. Then their children finally become adults, etc., time passes by very quickly.

时间像飞一样,只是你们不知道罢了。 想一想时间过得快不快?等到你们哪一天躺在床上要走 的时候,你们会回忆的,等你们躺在床上没事情的时候, 天天吊着吊瓶的时候,承受着开刀、化疗、胸闷气急等 种种病痛的时候,你们心中会想到自己的一生,知道自 己要走了,那个时候你们会非常地痛苦,这就是生老病 死的最后一关死亡给你们带来的痛苦。

Time flies, it’s just that you don’t notice it. When you think back, don’t you think it passes quickly? Wait until one day when you lay in bed waiting to die, and then you recall the past. Wait until one day when you lay in bed with nothing to do in the hospital, or when you require surgery performed or chemotherapy, or when you are afflicted with different kinds of disease, and you recall back all the moments in your life knowing that you will die soon, it will be extremely painful. That is the pain from the final stage of death.

很多人就是想不到这个死亡的时候,才会吃喝嫖赌, 才会浪费自己的青春,那么怎么样能够把它解脱呢?就 是叫你们天天行善、做功德,爱护众生,你们做了吗? 哎呀,我累啊,我今天忙啊,我没空啊,我哪有时间啊, 时光就这么地过去了。师父问你们,时光会停下来等你 们吗?“嘀嗒、嘀嗒”,时间就这么一分一秒、一天一 天地过去了,你们老了,就像火车快到终点一样,只不 过有些人还有好多站要坐,有些人已经到终点了,每个 人都有一个站啊,不是说你不想下车就可以不下车,到 了终点站你不想下车,人家也会把你赶下去的,所以你 们要好好地为自己的将来考虑。

It’s because many people don’t think about their death, that’s why they indulge themselves in alcohol, sex and gambling, and waste their youths. Then how should we liberate ourselves from it? You must constantly do good deeds, meritorious deeds, show love and concern for other sentient beings, can you do it? “Oh, I’m so tired, I’ve been very busy. I don’t have the time.” Master asks you, “Does time wait for you? ‘Tick-tock, tick-tock’, a day quickly passes by. You’re already old; your train is about to reach its destination, it’s just that some people still have to wait for a few more stops before they reach their destination while others have already reached it. Everybody has a station that they must get off, it’s not that you don’t need to get off if you don’t want to get off, when the train has reached its final station, you will be forced to leave nevertheless. That’s why you must seriously consider your future.

修心的人不要渗透于人间的一切事物当中,就是不 要对某一件事情特别地感兴趣,这样你才不会受到污染。 因为如果你对哪件事情特别感兴趣,哎呀,好事来了, 我一定要去追啊、求啊,用现代话来讲,你就会被它套 住,过去佛法里没有“套住”这个词,师父用现代白话 佛法给你们讲叫“套住”。所以,想自己不被牵扯,心 不受污染,你就要用“空”来对待所有的烦恼。空是什 么?

Cultivators shouldn’t study too deeply into any matters of the human realm; in other words, don’t become too interested in any subject matter; that way, you won’t become contaminated. If you’re too interested in something, you will become hopeful, and you will pursue it. In other words, you would become entrapped by it. That’s why if you don’t want to become hindered, nor contaminated, then you must use ‘emptiness’ to deal with all afflictions. What is emptiness?

就是无所谓、没有,你给我,谢谢你,没有了,感 恩你;你今天对我不好,谢谢你过去对我的帮助;没有 吃的,没有关系的,我饿一点;没有喝的,我忍一忍, 过一会儿就有水喝了;今天人家不给你车,没关系,我 走回家;什么都没有关系,什么都无所谓,什么都不挂 在心中,你不就空了吗?人间很多事情都是想出来的, 天天想“我念小房子,鬼不要来找我啊”,鬼就来找你 了。你有本事就不要想,你憋不住还是要想,那说明你 的心中有鬼啊。心空的人,心中没鬼,鬼怎么会来找他 啊?师父讲话你们听得懂吗?

It’s indifference. If you give me something, I thank you, if you don’t, I’m grateful. Today, if you don’t treat me well anymore, I’m thankful for your help in the past. If there’s nothing to eat, it’s okay; I don’t mind feeling hungry. If there’s nothing to drink, I’ll remain patient as I know I’ll have water to drink soon. If today, nobody is giving you a lift, you would think, “It’s okay; I can make my way back home.” If you’re fine with everything, if you’re indifferent about everything, and nothing lingers within your mind, aren’t you in a state of emptiness? Many things in the human realm are created by ourselves, if you constantly have thoughts like, “I’m reciting Little Houses now, ghosts please don’t come,” then ghosts will look for you. If you have the ability, then don’t think of anything. If you still can’t stop thinking about it, it means that you still feel guilty about something. A person who’s in a state of emptiness will not have any guilt, then how would ghosts look for them? Do you understand?

烦恼、障碍、诽谤、心灵的折磨,都是因为你没有 用佛性、空性来对待,你已经被染着了,这个习性已经 被染着了,所以要想去除污染,每天要清洁,这就是修 行。很多人问师父,什么叫修行啊?修行就是每天把你 的心擦擦干净,师父对弟子有时候就是要严格,师父就 是要说你们,指出你们身上的毛病,你能接受,你就清 洁了。

Afflictions, obstacles, slander and mental torture only manifest because you haven’t dealt with it using your Buddha-nature and your empty-nature. You’re already contaminated, your habits have been defiled. That’s why if you want to remove this defilement, you must purify it every day, that is cultivation. Many people ask Master, “What is cultivation?” Cultivation is about purifying your mind every day. Master is very strict towards his disciples. Master wants to point out all the flaws and shortcomings that you have and hope that you will accept his criticism and make reforms and ‘purification’.

师父问你们,你们身上有一个脏的酱油渍,你用 手搓的时候,是不是要用力才能擦掉它?你身上有一个 癌症,是不是要动手术把你的皮割开才能把它摘除啊? 所有的这一切都很痛,但是痛过了之后,它就好了。所 以心灵折磨最后想通了,那就不染着习性了,你就好了。 很多人的心灵长期受着折磨,没有解决,最后就让心灵 受伤了、污染了,那么你就是没有修好心。

Master asks you when you have some sauce stained on your clothes, and you try to use your hands and some water to wash it away, don’t you use force to remove it? When you have cancer, don’t you require an operation performed to cut open your skin and physically remove the cancerous cells away from the body? All of that is painful. But after the pain is over, it will get better. That’s why when one can finally think clearly, then their mental torture and defilement are over so that they will get better. Many people suffer from mental torture over a prolonged period, unable to resolve it, so in their end, their mental state is hurt and defiled. What it means is that the person hasn’t properly cultivated their mind.

学会空性,要懂得菩提心是佛子的因啊。菩提心是 什么?就是菩萨的心、慈悲的心,它会造因,因为你拥 有菩萨的心,你所做的所有事情都是造着善因。佛学院 也是讲这些道理,师父讲法是力求让每个弟子都能够理 解佛法的真谛,不要稀里糊涂地学佛,不要稀里糊涂地 断送自己的人生。要知道上求佛道,下化众生,以慈悲 心和菩提心为本愿,要用自己的慈悲心下化众生,去帮 助众生,就是说,我本来的愿力就是要有智慧和慈悲啊。 想一想,有慈悲心的人会没有愿力吗?会没有智慧吗? 有智慧、有愿力的人,会没有慈悲心吗?所以,广结善 缘,让自己的心中滋生利益众生的心,只要你心中想出 来的事情全是帮助别人,没有一样事情是为自己的,这 就叫下化众生。

Learn how to enter into a state of emptiness; one must know that the bodhi-mind is the karmic cause of a Buddhist. What is ‘bodhi-mind’? It is the mind of a Bodhisattva, a mind of compassion. Because you possess the mind of a Bodhisattva when undertaking any actions, everything you do creates wholesome karmic causes. Buddhist schools also talk about this principle. When Master talks about the Dharma, he strives to make sure that every disciple can understand and comprehend the essence of the Buddha-Dharma. Don’t foolishly learn Buddhism, don’t foolishly forfeit your life. You must pursue the path of Buddhism while awakening sentient beings and use compassion and the bodhi-mind as the motive force. You must use your compassion to awaken and help sentient beings; in other words, your power of vow must be driven by wisdom and compassion. Think about it; would compassionate people lack the power of vow? Would they lack wisdom? Would people who have wisdom and power of vows lack compassion? That’s why one must develop wholesome affinities with everybody so that their mind will develop the urge of helping and benefitting other sentient beings. As long as the things you think are selfless and are completely about helping others, then that’s the definition of ‘awakening sentient beings’.

你脑子里念头一动出来就是别人,心中所有想出来 的事情都是利益众生,这样你能灭一切烦恼,也就是说, 一个人从出生开始,就求灭一切烦恼,灭一切贪瞋痴, 这个孩子以后会非常有慈悲心,会慢慢地离开贪瞋痴。 很多人在拜师的时候跟师父讲:“师父,我有一个新的 生命,我已经不知道过去的我是谁了,因为过去的我做 了太多的恶事、坏事,我已经没有脸去看过去的我了, 我新的生命开始了,我要重新做人,我要忏悔我过去做 错的所有事情,我要做一个新人,然后断恶修善。”就 是说,我们学佛后拥有新的生命,拥有新生命的人必须 断掉你过去所有的恶念,要修所有的善业,持戒修法, 改变命运。

If every intent that sprouts from your mind are about helping others, then you would cease all afflictions, you would cease all greed, hatred and foolishness, and you would be a very compassionate individual. After the disciple initiation ceremony, many people say to Master, “Master, I have a new life now. I don’t recognise the ‘me’ in the past anymore, that’s because I did many bad things before. I’m embarrassed and ashamed to look at who I once was. My new life has started. I must start anew. I repent for all the unwholesome deeds I committed in the past, I’m a new person, I will cease all evil and cultivate all benevolence.” In other words, once we start practising Buddhism, we have started a brand new life. To possess and maintain it, one must remove and cease all unwholesome thoughts and cultivate all wholesome deeds. We must observe the precepts and cultivate the Dharma to change our destiny.

你们今天坐在这里规规矩矩,站起来双手合掌,对 所有看见的人都很尊敬,对待他们像兄弟姐妹一样,尊 敬师父,自己吃素,这一切全部都是因为持戒,学佛人 持戒很重要,持戒可以改变你的命运。很多人天天求福 分,你们知道福分是怎么来的吗?福分就是你持戒持来 的,你只有坚持持戒,不该做的不做,不该看的不看, 不该听的不听,不该想的不想,很快地你的福分就自然 而然地来了,你们想想是不是这样?

Today, many of you have sat here orderly, when you stand, your hands are together. You are respectful to everybody you see and treat them like fellow brothers and sisters. You are respectful to Master, and you adopt a vegetarian diet. All of that is because you are observing the precepts, it’s very important to a Buddhist. Observing precepts can change one’s destiny. Many people pray for worldly blessings, do you know where it comes from? It comes from observing precepts. As long as you can maintain it, and refrain from doing anything you shouldn’t do, from looking at anything you shouldn’t see, from thinking things that you shouldn’t be thinking, then worldly blessings will very quickly and naturally be bestowed upon you. Don’t you agree?

Guan Yin Citta Buddhism in Plain Terms V10-29

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