V 11-23 View Desires as Something Empty and the Bodhi as Something Real 欲望为空 菩提为真

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.

一个人学佛不能太贪著五欲,欲望真的是很害人的。一个人要这个、要那个,慢慢地什么都要,到了最后他心中充满着欲望,他就会忘记自己受苦的过去,他就不会去好好地修心修行。我们做人如果太贪著世俗之乐,就是人间的一些世俗的快乐,比如吃饭、喝酒、玩耍、打麻将,去跟人家讲一些荤笑话,那么你根本就没有时间去修行。浪费时间就是因为你太贪了,有些人为了一个房子,为了一个车子,会付出自己很多的时间。过去为什么菩萨让我们苦修行呢?因为当一个人吃苦的时候,他就会想到要修行;当一个人在物质上享受的时候,他不会想到要修行,他也不会想到要约束自己、提升境界。犹如一个小孩子读书一样,如果这个小孩不贪玩,专心读书,他才能成功;如果这个孩子整天贪玩,在物质上得到很多的享受,他不下苦功夫,他绝对读不好书。

Buddhists shouldn’t become too indulgent into their desires. Desires can ruin people. A person starts from wanting this and that, then gradually they want everything until their mind is completely filled with desires. They would then forget all about the hardships they experienced in the past, and they will no longer cultivate properly. If we are too eager to experience the worldly pleasures, for example, eating fine food, drinking fine wine, playing and joking around, they basically won’t find the time to cultivate. One wastes their time because they’re too greedy. Some people will use up a lot of their time for the sake of getting a property or a car. In the past, why did the Bodhisattvas tell us to practise asceticism? It’s because when a person is experiencing hardships, they will think about cultivating. Whereas when a person is enjoying themselves, they won’t think about cultivating, they won’t think about restricting themselves to increase their level of spirituality. Just like when a child study. If the child didn’t spend a lot of time playing and focused on studying, then they will perform very well academically. If the child plays all day and enjoys a lot of things, then they won’t put in the effort, and they won’t do well academically.


对我们学佛人来讲,苦和乐在菩萨的眼中实际上都是属于空。苦空,因为苦了之后就没有了。今天把脚扭伤了,痛过之后,到了一定时间好了,就没事了。很多人身体上受过伤,只要现在不痛了,他就忘记了。多人对他说“你要少抽烟啊”,尽管他的肺病没有发出来,但是只要他连续咳嗽,他就不抽烟了;很多人就算咳嗽了,他还在不停地抽烟,这是属于苦。还有乐空,乐空是什么?快乐也是空的。你们今天快乐吧?一会儿就过了。你们结婚的时候快乐吧?很快就过了,接下来就是争吵、烦恼,不停地做家务,不停地在做事情,到了最后还可能要离婚,有快乐吗?生孩子的时候,孩子刚出来快乐吗?快乐。等孩子大了,天天跟自己吵架,骂爸爸妈妈的时候,不听话的时候,很多父母在想“不要生他出来就好了”,最后孩子离开了你,这个快乐就变成空了,这叫乐空。们吃饭的时候很开心,快乐吧?吃完了,空掉了,没了。很多人吃得太多,回到家里呕吐,把一个晚上快乐地吃下去的好东西全部吐光了,叫乐空。想一想,人跟菩萨的境界不一样,就体现在这种地方。

To us, Buddhists and in the eyes of the Bodhisattvas, hardship and bliss are empty. Hardship is empty because when the experience is over, it’s gone. If you twisted your ankle today, you would be in pain for a few days, but afterwards, it will disappear, and you will forget about it. Many people injured their body before, but when the pain disappears, they will forget about it. Many people tell smokers to smoke less. Some of them obey when they find themselves coughing non-stop even if they haven’t developed any lung disease yet. At the same time, others continue to smoke despite coughing badly. These are all hardships. Bliss is also empty. Are you happy now? After a while, that feeling is gone. When you were married, weren’t you very happy? That happiness quickly passes as what follows are arguments, afflictions, housework and many other responsibilities. In the end, divorce is a possibility. Is there still happiness? When you gave birth to your child, weren’t you happy? Yes. But when the child grows up, they would continue to argue with you. Then when they start to scold at their parents or disobey them, then many parents might think that it would’ve been best if they didn’t give birth to them. In the end, the child will still leave their parents. So doesn’t that happiness become empty? When you’re having your favourite dish, aren’t you happy? But after you ate it, doesn’t that happiness go away? Many people eat too much and vomit when they return home and throw up all of their favourite food. So happiness is empty. Think about it, the level of spirituality of a human and a Bodhisattva is different, and it shows in these kinds of environment.


因为你还没有悟道,你不懂在人间人应该拥有什么、失去什么,因为你没有开悟,你才会有苦乐之分。如果今天你知道今天的苦能够换来明天的甜,你今天的快乐可能给你增加未来的痛苦,你懂得了这个辩证法,你在苦的时候就不会那么伤心了,在你快乐的时候你也不会那么尽情地去欢乐,因为快乐之后有很多的苦会出现。以在苦的时候要坚持,你才能悟道。苦等于乐,乐等于苦,苦和乐是没有分开的,因为你没有悟道,所以你觉得人生永远是苦的。如果有一天你知道这个世界上的一切都是无常的,你就不会感觉到有什么苦、有什么乐,因为苦会过去,快乐也会过去,人最后拥有的就是一个“空”,两手空空。很多伟大的人,我们过去都知道他,当他走的时候也是两手空空,对不对?秦始皇把他的兵马俑全部带进墓地,带得走吗?他想把他的江山土地带走,带得走吗?所以,要懂道理。

That’s because you haven’t enlightened yet, you don’t know what you should possess or what you should lose. That’s why you differentiate between things of hardship and things of bliss. If you understand that today’s hardships will bring tomorrow’s sweetness, or today’s happiness will bring you tomorrow’s suffering, then you will know how to use the dialectic method of analysis. Then in times of hardships, you won’t get too depressed, and in times of happiness, you won’t be too overjoyed. That’s because, on many occasions, what awaits at the end of the road of happiness is the road of suffering. That’s why one must persevere in times of hardship in order to awaken. Hardship is the same as bliss, and bliss is the same as a hardship. They are inseparable. But because you haven’t awakened, you think that life is always hard. If one day, you realise that everything in this world is impermanent, then you won’t feel unhappiness or joy. That’s because unhappy events will go away, and happy events will also go away. In the end, there is only emptiness. Many great people who passed away always died empty-handed. Isn’t that right? Emperor Qin has his terracotta army buried along with him, could he take them away? He wanted to take all the lands he conquered with him, could he? That’s why you must understand these principles.


师父讲一个典故给大家听。有一只小老鼠,小老鼠说:“我拥有太阳,我给大地带来了温暖和阳光。”所有的小动物都笑他,说他有神经病,实际上这只小老鼠是从骨子里得到了阳光,他真的感觉到阳光是他的,因为他感觉到了阳光的照耀,让他非常的高兴,非常的温暖,他觉得让他温暖的就是他的。他觉得太阳也是属于他的,实际上他没有错,因为任何人都可以把太阳算成是自己的,只要你打开窗户,只要你走到户外,你能够得到阳光的照射,这个太阳就是你的。只要你敞开心扉,只要你能够接受佛法,这个佛法就是你的。很多人不珍惜,他躲在家里,他没有看见阳光,所以他没有感觉到阳光的温暖。其实人就是要自己能够感受到佛法的存在,你就会拥有佛法;当你感受不到佛法的存在,你就像失去了阳光一样。一个长年累月见不到太阳的人,他会说:“太阳对我来讲没有意义。”但是我们拥有阳光的人,永远不想失去阳光。

Here’s a classical allusion, there was once a small mouse. The mouse said, “I possess the sun; I give warmth and sunlight to the lands.” All of the small animals around it laughed at it and said it was crazy. In reality, it’s because the small mouse genuinely felt that the sunlight is its. That’s because it has experienced the sun’s radiance and it made it very happy and warm. So it felt that the sun belongs to it. From that perspective, it isn’t wrong. That’s because every person could view the sun as theirs. They just need to open the window and go out in the open, and they could feel the sun’s rays, and the sun belongs to them. If you could open up your mind, as long as you accept the Buddha-Dharma, then the Buddha-Dharma belongs to you. Many people don’t cherish it. They hide at home so they don’t see the sun and can’t feel the sun’s warmth. In reality, as long as you could feel that the Buddha-Dharma exists, then it’s yours. When you don’t feel that it exists, then it is the same as losing the sunlight. A person who hasn’t seen the sun for a long period would say, “The sun is meaningless to me.” But we who possess the sunlight will never want to lose it.


师父希望你们要懂得珍惜自己的福分,珍惜自己拥有的佛法,让自己能够明心见性,把自己的欲望要降到最低点。你们这些弟子想一想,你们的欲望现在还有多少?你们根据自己的年龄想一想,你们还想做的事情是不是很现实?如果你今天已经是七十岁了,你说你还想拥有房子,还想拥有更多的孩子,这肯定是不现实的,人在什么年龄,思维就应该想什么相应的事情。所以欲望不能膨胀,欲望一旦膨胀,你就会把自己的理性降到最低点。想一想,很多人出事了,他难道还缺钱吗?他的黄金和钱都可以用卡车拉的,他已经拥有几辈子都用不完的钱,他为什么还要钱呢?这就警示一个问题,人的欲望一直会膨胀,是不会收缩的,除非学佛,否则你是自然而然地被人性的劣根性牵引,让你的欲望永远得不到满足。

Master hopes that you could cherish your worldly blessings, and cherish your possession of the Buddha-Dharma so that you could clear up your mind and find your inherent nature and minimise your desires. To you disciples, how many desires do you currently have? Think about it according to your age, is it still realistic for you to do the things that you want to do? If you are currently 70 years old, and you want to have a property or have more children, then it’s definitely not a realistic desire. People should think about things and act according to their age. That’s why one shouldn’t let their desires grow; otherwise, it will lower your rational thinking to the lowest point. Think about it, when many people encounter problems suddenly, is it because they lack money? They already have enough money to drive a Bentley and spend it for a few lifetimes, yet why do they still want more money? It serves as a warning. If a person’s desires continually grow, it won’t shrink back. Unless the person learns Buddhism, they would naturally be led by their deep-rooted bad habits, and they would never be satisfied when their desires are fulfilled.


过去很多皇帝有收集古董的嗜好,用我们现代人的眼光看,连他本人都是古董,但是他当年还要挖掘更早的古董并收藏起来,他觉得很开心。欧洲有一个国王很喜欢偷人家的东西,他已经是国王了,为什么还要偷人家的东西呢?因为他觉得快乐。他经常在皇宫里开舞会,大家在一起跳舞,他跟某王子跳舞,跟某女皇跳舞,一转身,就把人家身上好的东西偷过来,回到自己的皇宫就拿出来看:这是某某国王的怀表,这是某某女王的头饰……他放在家里看着可开心啊。你说,他是国王,他什么没有啊?其实这就是人的一种劣根性。所以菩萨教我们说,要做圣人,就是要把自己的理性升华到最高,因为只有理智的人才能克制自己的欲望。就像我们做人一样,凡事能够站在别人的角度为别人着想的人,他就是慈悲的人。

Many of the kings and emperors of the past had a hobby of collecting antiques. From our perspective, even they themselves are antiques. But at their time, they were excavating antiques that were older than them to keep. They were very happy. There was once a king in Europe who likes to steal things. He was a king, so why did he still steal? That’s because he felt happy about it. He regularly held balls in his palace and invited other princes and princesses to dance there. And when they turned away, the king would steal something from them, so when he returns back into his room, he will admire his spoils. “Oh, this is the pocket watch from the prince of xx. Oh, this is the jewellery of the princess of xx.” He would be very happy. You may say that he’s already a king, what does he lack? In reality, it is a kind of deep-rooted bad habit. That’s why the Bodhisattvas tell us to act like sages. In other words, we must elevate our rational thinking to the highest point. That’s because only a rational person could control their desires. Just like when we act like a morally upright individual, we must always view things from the other person’s point of view, so we know how to care for them. That is an act of compassion.


你们看看跟师父在一起的人,师父是什么事情都先想到别人,然后才想到自己。师父看见你们在做义工,师父第一个想到的就是你们很辛苦,天这么热,你们吃饭了吗?师父永远是这样的,所以弟子也是先想到别人。一个人能够为别人着想,他就是有慈悲心。佛的人要懂得,慈悲心会化解你的烦恼。烦人家,你自己有难过的事情,就是因为你还没有原谅别人;你原谅别人了,你就拥有了慈悲心,拥有慈悲心的人很容易原谅别人,当你原谅别人之后,你就会化解烦恼。

Look at those who are around Master. Master is somebody who thinks about others before thinking about himself. When Master sees you all doing volunteer work, he would first think of how hard it is for you. “The temperature is so hot, have you eaten yet?” Master is always like that. That’s why, as a disciple, you should also think of others first. When somebody could think of others first, then it means that they’re compassionate. Buddhists must learn that compassion could resolve their afflictions. When you’re frustrated about others, or when you are depressed about something, it’s because you haven’t forgiven the person. If you do, then it means you’re compassionate. Those who are compassionate forgive others easily. When you forgive others, your afflictions would be resolved.


要懂得,退步之后就是向前,烦恼之后就会有智慧。所以,当一个烦恼来了的时候,不要烦,要想办法、动脑筋,用菩萨的智慧来对治它,把烦恼去除之后,你就拥有掌控这个烦恼的使用权。师父讲的白话佛法就是这样的,你们容易听得懂,知道这叫什么吗?实际上,掌控这个使用权就是佛陀讲的“烦恼即菩提”。菩提是智慧,烦恼是麻烦,你这个烦恼不来,怎么会显示出你有智慧呢?只有碰到很多烦恼,你的智慧才会充盈在你的大脑当中,然后你才会拥有菩提,所以“烦恼即菩提”。

You must know that retreating is advancing. After your afflictions are over, you will gain wisdom. That’s why an affliction appears, don’t be frustrated about it, you must think of a method, and use the Bodhisattva’s wisdom to treat it. After the affliction is eliminated, then you would own the rights of the affliction. Do you know what that means? In reality, when you control its rights, it is what Gautama Buddha called ‘afflictions are Bodhi’. Bodhi means wisdom; afflictions mean problems. If that problem didn’t arise, how could you manifest your wisdom? It’s when you encounter many problems that your wisdom would fill your mind, and then you possess the Bodhi wisdom. That’s why ‘afflictions are Bodhi’.

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