V 11-39 The Five Aggregates are Empty (Part 2) 五蕴皆空(二)

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.

因为五蕴的生灭,当你看到物质之后,你所产生的“色”,就是我眼睛看到的这个有色世界,看到的这个喜欢的东西,你要从内心来观。也就是说,佛陀教育我们,在五蕴当中,你今天所看到的一些物质也好,非物质的也好,你要从内心来解决这些问题。师父问你们,除了色蕴之外,其他的四蕴都是心理活动,所以佛陀叫我们要内观。去除五蕴成为“五蕴皆空”,但你先要在心里把四蕴皆空。佛陀真的是一个大哲学家、大教育家!这个五蕴里面有“受想行识”四蕴都是内心的。感受是不是内心的?想是不是内心的?行,自己心理行为,“我恨不得冲过去骂他”,自己心里在想,对不对?然后就是意识,这个全部是在内心的。

Because the five aggregates have birth and cessation, when you see a material object, you will develop mental feedback. So you must observe that feedback inwardly. In order words, Gautama Buddha teaches us that whether we are observing material objects or non-material objects, we must resolve it within our mind. Master asks you, other than the aggregate of form, the other four aggregates are all mental activities. That’s why Gautama Buddha tells us to introspect. Once we eliminate the five aggregates, then ‘the five aggregates are empty’, but we must first make the four aggregates empty within our mind. Gautama Buddha was a great philosopher and educator. Out of the five aggregates, feeling, perception, mental formation, and consciousness exist within the mind. Doesn’t feelings develop from the mind? Doesn’t perception develop from the mind? What about the mental formation of awareness? And consciousness? “I really want to go and scold him.” Isn’t that a thought that comes from the mind? That’s why all of them are associated with the inner mind.


开始时佛陀就说了一句,他叫大家观察五蕴的生灭,接下来佛陀继续说,能够观察五蕴出现的现象和过程,就是在观照五蕴的生灭法。太精彩了!师父都不知道你们是否听得懂。佛陀说,如果我们能够观察这个色、受、想、行、识出现的现象和过程,比方说,你今天脑子里开始形成对这个人的爱,慢慢地越来越爱,爱得心里真的是非常喜欢他,到了那个时候,实际上你的五蕴已经形成了,对不对?爱到最后……实际上这个过程当中你就是在观照。“观”是什么?观察。“照”就是我在看这个问题。观照自己五蕴的生灭法。因为你爱他、爱他,爱到最后呢,婚姻失败就没了;我想啊想,想到后来,想完了,结束了;我今天要买一样东西,我买啊买,我买不起,就没了:所有的一切全部都是空的。那讲到底了,佛陀就是告诉你们,观照五蕴的生灭法,什么东西有生就会有灭,道理就是这么简单。

In the beginning, Gautama Buddha only said one phrase; he told everybody to observe the birth and cessation of their five aggregates. Next, he said that those who could observe the phenomenal appearance and process of their five aggregates are already using the method of observing the birth and cessation of their five aggregates. In other words, if you could observe the phenomenal appearances and processes of the forms, feelings, perceptions, mental formations and consciousnesses, then you are already observing the birth and cessation of it. For example, in your mind, you begin to develop affection towards another person. Gradually, this affection will increase until you begin to love them deeply. At that stage of the process, aren’t the five aggregates associated with it formed? At the end of the love, the marriage might fail, and it’s over. You think about it, and at the end of the train of thought, it’s over. Just like when you are thinking of buying something, but when you find that it might be too expensive, you don’t think about it anymore. That’s why everything is ultimately empty. To put it simply, when Gautama Buddha instructed us to observe the Dharma of birth and cessation of the five aggregates, he wants us to know that everything has a birth and a cessation.


那么,我们想要“五蕴皆空”该怎么办呢?要理解五蕴的生灭。佛陀把这句话倒过来讲,你想要“五蕴皆空”,你就要看到它的生灭。你今天想穿了,就是因为你受过了感情的折磨,你才会想得通。如果你没有被人家抛弃过,你怎么会想到“我无所谓,我今天出家了,我空了,我不要再结婚了”?你说没结婚的人从小就想要不结婚吗?因为五蕴给他造成了特别大的伤害,他才会想到最后自己要把它去除。因为任何的善和恶都会有生有灭,所以我就把它灭度了,我心中就空了,那就叫“五蕴皆空”。师父已经讲得很简单。

So what should we do if we want our five aggregates to be empty? You must first understand its birth and cessation. The reason why you can let go of relationships is because you might have experienced emotional pain romantically before. If you weren’t abandoned before, how would you develop thoughts like, “I don’t care anymore, I’ll become a monk. I don’t want to marry anymore,” right? When people say they don’t want to marry, did they think the same way when they were young? It’s because the five aggregates associated with it had already deeply hurt them; that’s why they want to remove it. Every wholesomeness and unwholesomeness has its birth and cessation. That’s why we must cease it so that your mind is empty. Then the five aggregates are empty.


现在再讲讲色蕴。色蕴是“四大”假合而成的,很多人不懂,眼睛看见东西以为好啊,其实是假的。师父问你们,你第一次跟某个人见面的时候,你会觉得他很可爱、很好,你跟他结婚了天天在一起,他的毛病都出来了,你会觉得他好吗?过去我们在中国的时候看见西人,觉得他们怎么这么可爱啊,看见我们就说“Hello”,和蔼可亲的样子。现在我们在澳洲待的时间长了,你跟西人再打交道看看:你刚刚请他吃完饭,接下来你跟他说一件事情,他不愿意做的:“NO。”你给他吃的再多都是白吃。中国人讲感情不好意思拒绝,西人就直接说“NO”,就这么简单。所以你对事物要看到底,并要明白有生就有灭。

Just to mention the aggregate of forms again. The aggregate of form is formed by the false combination of the four elements. Many people don’t understand. When they see something might be good, it’s actually fake. Master asks you, when you first meet somebody, the first impression that they give you might be that they are cute and have a good personality. But when you are married to him, and you are constantly together, then their shortcomings become apparent. Would you still think that they’re good? In the past, when Chinese people see westerners, they think that they are very friendly. They always greet with a ‘hello’ and seem to be gentle and courteous. But now that we have lived in Australia and we have been in contact with them for a long time, we know that they will refuse to do something if they don’t want to do it. For example, you have just treated them to dinner, and you asked them to help you do something. If they refuse to do it, they will say, “No.” So your treat was for nothing. Chinese people find it hard to refuse others as they don’t want to affect relationships, but westerners would directly say, “No.” It’s that simple. That’s why you must see through to the bottom of things and understand that when there’s a birth, there’s cessation.


师父告诉大家,地水火风实际上跟受想行识有关系的。因为“地”跟“受”很有关系,地是实实在在的硬的东西,我们说是纲领,造房子的屋梁,硬的地有骨头,身上有骨头,实际上就是人的感受。“想”就像“水”一样的,行云流水,想过了就没了,水就流掉了。第三个“行”,行动,人家说风风火火的行动,冲啊,杀啊,我去行动,我去做,拼了命去做,像“火”一样,一把火烧光了,行动一生就行完了,结束了,像火一样,最后也是空,火结束了灭了就没了。很多人一辈子做了这么多事情,最后死的时候躺在床上,他做过什么事情啊?很多法师最后开悟的时候,人家跟他说:“你一生做了这么多伟大的事情。”“我什么伟大?我一生什么都没做,因为一生什么都是空的。”

Master tells you, the four elements, earth, water, fire and wind, are related to one’s feeling, perception, mental formation and consciousness. Earth and feelings are related. The earth is the structure and what makes us feel grounded. Perception is like water as it flows and constantly changes. The mental formation is like fire; it’s like a burning desire that drives action. But after you have acted and it’s over, it’s ceased. Just like flames, in the end, only emptiness remains. Many people did many things in their lifetime, but when they lie on their bed waiting to die, they would think, “What had they done?” When venerable monks had become enlightened, and people praise them about how many great deeds they had done, they would reply, “What great things have I done? I have done nothing in my life; everything is empty.”


师父问你们,你们做过什么了?你们的爸爸妈妈一生在人间做了什么?你们的爷爷奶奶,你们现在还想得起来吗?你们的祖宗、再大的爷爷奶奶,他们在人间做过什么,你们想得起来吗?你们连他们的名字都想不起来。“风”就是意识。风像意识一样,刚刚想起来:“哎呀,是不是这样的?”一阵风一样的,“哦,不是的”,没了。“他是不是今天情人节会给我买束花啊?”想了半天,有人敲门了,以为是男朋友给她买花送过来了,门一开,是人家来要牛奶钱的。意识像一阵风一样,刚想他会不会怎么样,开心了半天,意识像风一样地刮过去。这一切全部是由你的妄念而生。佛菩萨说这些色受想行识都是妄念啊,是不应该有的。妄念就是不好的、假的、空的东西,但你们把妄念全记在心中了。

Master asks you, “What have you done? What did your parents do during their life? What about your grandparents? Do you know or remember what they did? What about your great grandparents? I bet you can’t even recall their names.” The wind is related to consciousness, where thoughts come and go like the wind. “Today’s Valentine’s Day. Would my boyfriend come over with some flowers?” You think about it all morning, and then you hear somebody knocking at the door. You thought that it must be your boyfriend, but it was actually the delivery man. Then your thought disappears like the wind. All of it was developed from your delusional thoughts. The Buddhas and Bodhisattvas expounded that all forms, feelings, perceptions, mental formations and consciousnesses are delusional and shouldn’t be developed. All delusional thoughts are bad; they are fake and empty things. But all of you keep it to memory.


人家对你们撒谎,你们自己也这样对人家,这些全部都是妄念。所以,五蕴就是幻化而生的短暂行为。佛陀为什么叫你们“五蕴皆空”呢?因为这些全部都是华而不实的东西。师父问你们,想一想就没了,这是不是短暂行为?想象一下我大起来可好了,想象一下说不定我以后能够嫁给一个非常好的男人,这都是想出来的,到了后来好吗?做人、做事情都是这样。这个世界都是幻化想象出来的,全部都是幻化而生的短暂行为。你们很多女孩子小时候都有幻想症,男孩子也有。女孩子都想着自己以后大起来能够嫁给谁,“我能不能怎么样怎么样”;男孩子也想自己大起来“我要成为什么什么”,弄了半天碰得头破血流,才知道回到现实当中。

When people lie to you, you also respond in the same way to them. All of these are delusional thoughts. That’s why the five aggregates are temporary phenomena. Why did Gautama Buddha tell you all to empty your five aggregates? It’s because all of it is illusionary. Master asks you, when you think about something, and then you don’t think about it anymore, isn’t it temporary? One moment, you hope to wake up much later in the morning; next moment, you think that you might marry a very good person. All of these are fabricated from your thoughts, so what happens next? Everything is like that. This world is built upon illusional phenomena where everything is temporary. Many young girls dream about who they want to marry and whether they could do this and that. Many young men dream about wanting to become this and that. They daydream most of their waking day until they finally get back to reality.


一切从因缘生,一切从因缘灭。就是说一切都是从因最后到缘尽灭掉的。你今天生起了跟人家感情好的心,慢慢地就会失去跟他好的感情,灭掉了。你今天是小孩,等你以后年纪大了,成了老婆婆,你就会死去。所以,你理解了,就是佛陀跟我们讲的,你看空了,你知道什么叫生灭了,你就会知道五蕴的生灭;你看空了之后,你就知道“五蕴皆空”了。师父跟你们讲过后,你们会容易理解《心经》中“色即是空”,就是“五蕴皆空”。因为你看到这个有色世界都是空的,你已经观察到佛陀说的能够观察五蕴的现象和过程,你就是观察到五蕴的生灭;当你知道这个世界上的一切都是有生有灭的时候,你就知道“色即是空”;当你了解到“色即是空”的时候,你就拥有佛的智慧了。

Everything is born and ceased from karmic affinities. If today you develop good feelings towards somebody, you will gradually lose that feeling, and it’s ceased. If you’re a small child today, you will get older, become old and then die. That’s why when you understand it all and see the emptiness of all things, you know what birth and cessation are. Then you will know the births and cessations of the five aggregates. After you see the emptiness of it, then you know that the five aggregates are empty. Now you should understand the ‘Heart Sutra’ when it expounds that ‘form is emptiness’ and the ‘five aggregates are empty’. Because you see this world of forms is empty, you observe the process of the phenomenal born from the five aggregates in the same way that Gautama Buddha instructed. You are observing its births and cessations. When you know everything has births and cessations, then you understand that ‘form is emptiness’. And then you possess Buddha’s wisdom.

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