V 11-44 The Five Levels of Forbearance 忍辱的五个层次

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.

在八万四千法门当中,有一个法门叫“忍辱法门”。忍辱法门有五个层次,由浅入深。

In the 84,000 Dharma Doors, there’s a Dharma Door called ‘Forbearance Dharma Door’. There are five levels to it, starting from beginner to advanced.


第一叫生忍。生忍是什么意思呢?被别人污蔑了、冤枉了、侮辱了,当你碰到这些事情的时候,你知道无法回避,比方说,你在跟朋友的交往当中,他突然之间来侮辱你,或者诽谤你,这个时候你没有办法抵抗,首先你要学会坚强,这个坚强就是生忍。就是你要先忍耐,先让他讲下去,虽然你心中不认为他这样做是对的。忍耐是很痛苦,但要学会忍耐,第一步就是暂时先把事情放在心中边上,如果你不先把它放在心中边上,你马上就会跳起来,事态会变得更加地难以控制。所以,生忍就是先把事情放在一边,还不知道别人会怎么样的时候,先要忍耐,先把这口气忍下来。大家要记住,因为这里面还有一口气在,生忍就是还不成熟的忍耐。

The first level is called ‘Initial Forbearance’. It’s when you are being slandered, wronged or humiliated, and you know you have no ways to avoid it. For example, when you’re with a group of friends and one of them suddenly humiliates or slanders you. At that moment, you can’t fight it. So you steel yourself. That’s initial forbearance. It’s when you let them continue with it even though you disagree with what they say. Forbearance is mentally painful, but you must do it. The first step is to put aside the matter temporarily. If you don’t and you immediately get enraged, it might cause the situation to go out of control. That’s why initial forbearance is when you first put aside the matter since you don’t know how the other party would react. So you first forbear with it and bottle up your rage. Take note. At this level of forbearance, there is still rage. So initial forbearance is still a premature level of forbearance.


第二叫力忍。当别人在侮辱你的时候,当侮辱的境界来了,你被别人污蔑了、侮辱了,首先你要用自己的心力,用你的心讲话:“我又不是这样的,我又没有这样做。”因为心是有力量的,心力不跟他计较,然后退一步、让三分,自己心中想:“我是学佛人,我不跟你斤斤计较。”这样你就会慢慢地把它先压下去。然后就是相信菩萨,心里想:“为什么我的心中会有力量?为什么我能够忍耐得住?因为我的心中有菩萨、有佛,佛菩萨一定会帮我做主的。”

The second level is called ‘Forbearance with Power’. When you encounter a situation where you are being slandered and humiliated, first, you must use your mental power to have an internal dialogue with yourself. “I’m not like that.” “I didn’t even do it.” Because your mind has power, you don’t make a fuss with the other party. So you take a step back. You would think, “I’m a Buddhist; I shouldn’t be disputing about these petty matters with you.” That way, you would be able to suppress it first. And then have your faith in the Bodhisattvas, “Because I have the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas in my heart, they would definitely help me.”


相信这个世界上的一切都是因果,这个时候你就会把气氛缓解,用你的心力来安定你自己非常压抑的心,这个时候心中马上要想起观世音菩萨,想起很多伟大的佛,他们都是能够有非常大的忍耐力来断自己的瞋恨心。大家要记住这句话,因为有心力的人,能够把别人对他的侮辱这种境界反过来想,觉得这是来锻炼自己是否有瞋恨心的。因为当一般的人被别人侮辱的时候,马上就会起瞋恨,如果你被别人侮辱,你不生瞋恨心,那么你的境界就高,这个时候你就会想到,这种侮辱的境界是给你一种锻炼,这叫力忍。

When you believe that everything in this world happens due to karma, you would ease up the mood and use your mental power to ease up your suppressed emotions. At that moment, you must immediately think of Guan Yin Bodhisattva and all the other great Buddhas. All of them have an incredible power of forbearance to cease their hatred. Please take note, people with mental tenacity can reverse their way of thinking when they get into a situation where they are being humiliated. They would see it as an opportunity to train themselves and see whether they still harbour hatred within their mind. If you don’t get angry when you are humiliated, it means that your level of spirituality is high. That is ‘Forbearance with Power’.


第三叫缘忍。当别人在侮辱你的时候,缘忍就是用智慧来观照因缘。就是说,当别人在骂你、侮辱你的时候,你就要想到:“哦,不要生气,这是我上辈子欠他的,我把这孩子养了这么大,为什么他会对我不好?因为是我上辈子欠他的,我还没有还完,所以他这辈子到我家里,让我继续还债。”这样,你就是在用智慧来观照、来想到缘分。为什么无故受辱?为什么别人要污蔑你呢?为什么要无缘无故地骂你、打你?树有根,水有源,你自己要想一想,这个世界上的一切绝对不是这么简单的,你要想到,别人不会无缘无故地侮辱你,这一定是跟你上辈子的缘分有关系,这就叫缘忍。

The third level is called ‘Forbearance of Affinity’. When others humiliate you, forbearance of affinity is when you use your wisdom to contemplate karmic affinity. In other words, when others scold or humiliate you, you would think, “I shouldn’t get angry. It must be a karmic debt that I owe from the previous life.” If it’s your child who scolds you, would think, “I raised him to an adult; why is he still mistreating me? It must be because I owe him karmically. That’s why he was reincarnated into my family so that I continue repaying my karmic debts.” In this method, you are using your wisdom to contemplate this karmic affinity. Why were you humiliated for no reason? Why were you slandered for no reason? Why were you beaten or scolded for no reason? Trees have roots; water has a source. You must ponder. In this world, nothing is simply as it is. You must realise that people won’t insult you for no reason. It must be related to your previous life karmically. That is ‘Forbearance of Affinity’.


忍耐要靠很多对缘分的理解,要知道,我今天受这么多的恶报,一定是自己的业障所致,否则哪里会有人无缘无故地骂你、恨你。你要这么想:这是我心中的业障,所以我一定要还债。怎么还呢?当别人侮辱你的时候,你先忍耐下来,当你忍耐下来之后,你就是在还债了,这样的话,你就能够领悟被侮辱的真谛。真谛是什么?别人为什么要骂你?可能你过去骂过别人,上辈子害过别人,这辈子你一定会受到这个报应,那你就是懂得了这个真谛。这个世界没有无缘无故的爱,也没有无缘无故的恨,当你有了这种想法,当这种侮辱的事情发生的时候,你就不会生瞋恨心,你就不会去恨别人。

Forbearance requires a deep understanding of karmic affinities. You must understand that your negative karma causes the unwholesome consequences you are experiencing. Otherwise, why would people scold you or hate you for no reason? You should think, “It’s the negative karma that resides within me; I must repay it back.” How do you repay it? When others humiliate you, you must forbear it. When you are forbearing, you’re actually repaying the karmic debts. That way, you could comprehend the truth behind being humiliated. What’s that truth? Why are others scolding you? It’s because you must have scolded them in the past. If you have hurt others in your previous life, you will receive karmic retribution in your current life. You have realised the truth. There’s absolutely no such thing as love or hatred without any reason or cause. When you possess these thoughts, then when you’re humiliated, you won’t develop hatred.


第四叫观忍。一个人突然之间盯着你,又是骂你,又是侮辱你,这个时候怎么办呢?你的境界要高,叫“空观智慧”,就是当别人在骂你的时候,你心中在想:佛光照遍我的全身,一切诸法本来无我可得。也就是说,我现在是学佛的人,已经没有自我了,他在骂谁啊?过去在你们公司里有没有这种情况啊?一个人不指名地在骂人,骂到最后,很多人对号入座跳了起来,可是有些人却如如不动,为什么呢?因为无我,别人又没有骂我。既然无我,你有什么被侮辱的境界呢?

The fourth level is called ‘Forbearance of Contemplation’. When a person suddenly targets you, scolds you and humiliates you, what should you do? Your level of spirituality must be high. It would help if you used the ‘wisdom of empty contemplation’. It’s when others scold you; you develop thoughts like, “I’m already a Buddhist, I have no ego, what is he scolding at?” When you worked in the past, haven’t you encountered the following situation before? A colleague badmouths somebody without naming them. Then suddenly, some people violently react because they assumed that they were being badmouthed while others are indifferent about it. Why is that so? It’s because they didn’t take it personally. Their ego was empty. That’s why when one has let go of their ego, or ‘selfless’, how could they encounter a situation where they feel being humiliated?


人空我相,无我相的人,就能够忍耐。他没有觉得自己有很高的地位,所以,当别人在骂人的时候,他就觉得这个世界充满五欲六尘,一切都是空无的,就算别人今天在骂他,对他来讲,因为没有“我”了,自我没有了,他是修心的人,他没有自己,这个时候,他就是空了,所以,别人对他的侮辱就不成立。举个简单例子,你今天用探照灯对着天空照射,你能够照到天空的底吗?照不到。因为照到的天空只是云彩,根本不是天,虽然很高,但是没有到底。你的心如果是空无,你又怎会被他侮辱呢?

Those who have emptied their ‘self’ and those who don’t have an ego are able to forbear. They don’t feel that they’re on a pedestal, so when others scold them, they only feel that this world is filled with desires and defilements. Everything is empty and impermanent, so even if they’re being scolded, they don’t feel humiliated. They’re already cultivators. They’re already empty. To illustrate this with an example, if you direct the searchlight at the sky, would you be able to shine at the bottom of it? You can’t. What you could see are only the clouds. That’s because the sky is empty and limitless. If your mind is empty, how could you be humiliated?


一个人要学会不生气,用观空的方法,你的瞋恨心就没有了。“他在骂谁啊?我真的不知道。”无我了,因为已经没有“我”了,他在骂谁都不知道,这样你就不会造新业。造新业就是去跟别人吵架。在公司里,很多人不点名骂人说:“不要脸的,有本事当面讲我,不要跑到领导面前去讲我!”一定会有好几个人会冲出来:“我讲过你了?我什么时候讲过你啊?”这就是对号入座了。“无我”的人就是,你没有讲过,你跳出来干吗?不去跟别人争吵,你就不会造新业。

One must learn not to get angry. If you use the method of empty contemplation, that your hatred would disappear. “Who is he scolding at? I don’t know.” Because you are already selfless, you don’t know who he’s scolding. That way, you won’t develop new karma. New karma is created when you fight back. In the company, people scold people namelessly. “So shameless. If you’re a man, then come at me directly. Don’t go badmouthing in front of my superior behind my back.” Some people will definitely come out and say, “When did I ever talk about you?” They took it personally. Those who are selfless would be thinking, “I never said anything, so there’s no need to come out.” If you don’t fight others, then you won’t develop new karma.


第五叫慈忍。就是慈悲的忍耐。首先,你已经把自己当成是菩萨,遇到逆境来的时候,遇到侮辱你的境界来的时候,你不但不恨别人,你还会慈悲别人,觉得对方很可怜。“他在骂我,实际上他的心脏不舒服了,血压又高了,他会气得疯掉的。他在冤枉人、得罪人,他很可怜。这个人生气就是愚痴啊,愚痴的人非常可怜。”你不但不恨他,相反还觉得他很可怜。不知道你们是否有这种想法,师父经常这样想。如果有人说师父不好,师父就会觉得对方很可怜:他怎么什么都不懂的啊?他这样做是造业、犯口业,他以后年纪大了,身体不好的时候,他病倒的时候,就是他自己的业障所造成的。你要可怜他、慈悲他。

The fifth level is ‘Forbearance of Compassion’. Firstly, you already view yourself as a Bodhisattva. So when you encounter hardships or situations where you are being humiliated, not only don’t you develop hatred, you would also develop compassion towards the aggressor and feel that they are pitiful. “Although he’s scolding me, his heart is uncomfortable, and his blood pressure is rising. His health will worsen from his rage. He’s wronging and offending others. Angry people are the most foolish. Foolish people are pitiful.” Not only do you not develop hatred, but instead, you pity them. Master regularly thinks like that. If somebody said that he was bad, Master would pity the person. “How could he be so ignorant? If he continues doing so and commit deeds of verbal misconduct, then his health will get worse. When that happens, he has only himself to blame due to his negative karma.” You must pity and develop compassion for them.


老公在家里骂人的时候,你不能跟他对骂,你要觉得他很可怜,失去理智的人像个动物一样乱叫,也许是他在单位里受气了,回到家冲着你这么发泄,面对这种无理取闹,你用慈悲的方法,在心里想:我是学佛人,我要忍受、以德报怨。如果别人随意侮辱你、诽谤你,他一定会受到果报的,他一定会种下被别人侮辱、诽谤的因,因为你懂这个道理,你不生气,他却不懂。你这样想,等他以后这个果报来的时候,可能会发生自己的身体不好,或者家里出事,或者被别人打,或者被别人残害,或者得到法律的制裁,那个时候他会很可怜的。

When your husband scolds you at home, you shouldn’t scold back. You have to pity him that he’s lost his reason and acting like an animal, barking madly. Maybe he was oppressed at his workplace, so he vented it out at you when he came back home. When you encounter other’s deliberate provocation, you should react compassionately. It would help if you thought, “I’m a Buddhist, I must forbear it, and requite resentment with kindness. If people casually humiliate or slander others like me, they would definitely encounter karmic retribution. They are sowing the karmic seeds of being humiliated and slandered by others. When their time comes, their health might get worse, or get into a dispute, or get hurt by others.” Because you understand this, you won’t get angry, and you pity their ignorance and their future consequences.


要懂得用菩萨的无缘大慈、同体大悲,方便教化令我们觉悟,知过必改,断恶修善,重新做人。缘忍、观忍、慈忍,在佛法界统称为“理忍”,从理念上去忍耐。学佛人要有修养,动不动就跳的人是没有修养的,动不动就闹的人一定不是学佛人。你在家里熬不住了,又叫又跳又闹,这种人一定不是学佛人。首先连忍耐都做不到,你又如何能够克服住自己身上的劣根性呢?

You have to learn how to use the Bodhisattva’s great compassion with no reason, their great level of empathy, and their convenient teachings that enlighten you. So that you become aware of your faults and correct them, cease your unwholesomeness and cultivate all wholesomeness, and begin your life anew. Forbearance of Affinity, Forbearance of Contemplation and Forbearance of Compassion are known as Ideal Forbearances in the Buddha-Dharma. Buddhists must have good manners and be refined. Those who quickly lose their temper are unrefined. They are not Buddhists. If they can’t even forbear, then how could they overcome their deep-rooted bad habits?


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