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宣化上人開示錄(一)
Venerable Master Hua's Talks on Dharma Volume One 

化老和尚開示 Lectures by the Venerable Master Hsuan Hua

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恰到好處是中道

Doing It Just Right is the Middle Way


緊了繃,慢了鬆,不緊不慢才成功。
Too tight, and it'll break. Too slack, and it'll be loose. Neither tight nor slack, and it will turn out right.

參禪的法門,要念茲在茲。時時刻刻都要迴光返照,也不要緊,也不要慢,所謂:

緊了繃,慢了鬆,
不緊不慢才成功。

 

In the Dharma-door of investigating Chan, you must fix your attention on what you are doing. At all times, you should return the light and reflect within. Don't be too tense, and don't be too slack. It's said,

Too tight, and it'll break. Too slack,
and it'll be loose.
Neither tight nor slack,
and it will turn out right.

不緊不慢就是中道,行住坐臥不離這個,離了這個,就是錯過。這個是什麼,就是中道了義。

 

Being neither tense nor slack is the Middle Way. Walking, standing, sitting and lying down, don't be apart from this. Once you leave this, you have missed it. What is this? It's the ultimate meaning of the Middle Way.

參禪要不偏不倚,不要太過,也不要不及,太過或不及,那不是中道。不落空有二邊,才是中道。所謂「中道就是非空非有」,也就是真空妙有。無著於真空,無礙於妙有,真空妙有不可取,也不可捨,取也不得,捨也不可,這是真空妙有的境界。

 

In investigating Chan, you must be impartial, not leaning to one side. Don't go too far, and don't fail to go far enough. If you go too far, or not far enough, it's not the Middle Way. If you don't fall into the two extremes of emptiness and existence, then that's the Middle Way. It's said, “The Middle Way is neither emptiness nor existence.” It is True Emptiness and Wonderful Existence. Do not be attached to true emptiness, and do not be obstructed by wonderful existence, for true emptiness and wonderful existence cannot be grasped or renounced. You cannot take hold of them or let go of them. That's the state of true emptiness and wonderful existence.

   

用功的人,要有始有終,才能有所成就,所謂「貫徹始終」。不可一曝十寒,遇難即退,半途而廢,那是沒有出息的人,古人說:

修道不怕慢,只怕站。

 

When you are applying effort, you should finish what you start; only then will you accomplish anything. As it's said, “Carry it through from beginning to end.” You shouldn't “put it in the sun for one day and freeze it for ten,” retreat in the face of difficulty, or give up halfway─that's the behavior of people without backbone. The ancients said,

In cultivation, don't be afraid to go slowly.
Just be afraid of standing still.

 

平時用功參禪,照顧自己的話頭,用自己的金剛寶劍(智慧),斬斷一切的妄想;妄想斬斷,智慧現前;有了智慧光明,破了無明的黑暗;無明破除,就出離三界,不受生死,也就是闖過生命之輪(十二因緣)的關。

 

In your daily investigation of Chan, be mindful of your own meditation topic, and slash through all your idle thoughts with your Vajra-jewelled sword of wisdom. When idle thinking is severed, wisdom will arise. With the light of wisdom, you can smash through the gloom of ignorance. Once ignorance is smashed, you can transcend the Three Realms, escape birth and death, and crash your way out of the wheel of life (i.e. the twelve links of conditioned co-production).

   

用功修道的人,要有忍耐心,無論怎樣辛苦,都要忍受,忍就能到彼岸,所以各位打禪七,不要怕辛苦,所謂「苦盡甘來」。「不在最底下,到不了最頂上。」要知道萬丈高樓乃是從平地建起,不是在虛空造成的。所以我們參禪的人,要從根本上入手,就是把妄想驅除。若能把妄想制止,這時候,

心清水現月,
意定天無雲。

 

Those who apply effort in cultivating the Way must have patience. No matter how hard it is, you must patiently bear it. With patience you can reach the other shore. So in joining this Chan Session, you all should not be afraid of hardship. It's said, “When bitterness ends, sweetness comes.” If you don't start at the very bottom, you can't reach the top. Remember that a ten thousand foot skyscraper is built from the ground up. It isn't built in mid-air. Therefore, Chan cultivators must start with the basics, which are to get rid of idle thinking. If you can stop your idle thoughts, then at that point,

The moon appears in the waters of
a pure heart;
There are no clouds in the sky of
a calm mind.

   

心平百難皆散,意定萬事皆平,所謂:

心止念絕真富貴,
私欲斷盡真福田。

 

When the heart is at peace, all problems go away; When the mind is still, the myriad things are in harmony. As it is said,

True wealth is stopping the mind and cutting off thought;
True fields of blessings are devoid of all selfish desires.

   

參禪就是去妄存真,也就是沙媦嶊驉A在沙子塈銂鰷氶A那是很不容易的一件事。可是你想求金子,必須在沙子塈銦A必須要有耐性,你想明白自己本有佛性嗎?明心見性嗎?就要有耐心去修行,去參學,去研究,久而久之,豁然貫通,驟然開悟,原來如此!

 

One investigates Chan just to get rid of the false and keep the true. It is also to pan for gold, to look for gold dust in the sand, which is a difficult task. But if you want to find gold, you have to look in the sand, and be patient. Do you want to understand your inherent Buddha-nature? Do you want to understand your mind and see your nature? Then you must patiently cultivate, study and investigate, and when enough time has passed, you will suddenly penetrate and enlighten to the fact that it is originally this way!

   

參禪上了路,不需要打閒岔,各位自己努力參「念佛是誰?」非把這個「誰」找到不可,什麼時候找到,方可停止。功夫到了爐火純青的時候,便有好消息。

 

When your investigation of Chan is progressing well, there's no need to meddle in other people's business. Each of you should put forth effort to investigate “Who is mindful of the Buddha?” No matter what, you have to find out "who" it is. Only when you find the answer can you stop. When the intensity of your efforts has reached a peak, there will be good news.

   

結雙跏趺坐的姿勢,是將左腿放在右腿上,然後將右腿搬到左腿上,因為左腿屬於陽,右腿屬於陰。打坐時,左腿是陽在上邊,右腿是陰在下邊,好像無極生太極,太極生兩儀(陰儀、陽儀),也是這樣的擺法。若是因為方便起見,左腿在下,右腿在上也可以的。法無定法,隨著個人習慣而決定,不必執著一定要這種姿勢。教你左腿壓右腿,這只是個方法而已。並不是硬性規定,一定要這樣子。

 

To sit in full-lotus posture, put your left foot on your right thigh, and then put your right foot on your left thigh. The reason for this is that the left leg is yang and the right leg is yin. When you sit in meditation, the left leg which is yang is on top, and the right leg which is yin is below. This is like the Limitless giving rise to the Absolute, and the Absolute giving rise to the two primordial forms (the yin fish and the yang fish)─they are also set up in this way. For the sake of convenience, putting the left leg below and the right leg on top is also okay. The Dharma is not fixed, and the decision is based on individual preference. You don't need to become attached and think that you have to use this posture. When I teach you to put your left leg on top of your right leg first, that's only one method. It's not a hard and fast rule that you have to do it that way.

   

總而言之,結跏趺坐,是教你容易入定。你能在走路時入定,那麼坐不坐都可以的。入定的境界,沒有任何的妄想,心中一念不生,一塵不染。若能行住坐臥一念不生,一塵不染,那就是在用功,並不一定是坐在那堙A才算是用功。

 

In general, sitting in the full-lotus posture will make it easier for you to enter samadhi. If you can remain in samadhi even when you are moving, then it is not necessary to sit. Within samadhi, you have no idle thoughts. Your mind is totally free from thinking and you are not defiled by even a speck of dust. If you can constantly maintain this state when you are moving, still, sitting or reclining, then you are working vigorously. It is not the case that you are working hard only when sitting.

   

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