We are living in the Dharma-ending Age. Why is it called the Dharma-ending Age? Because no one cultivates seriously. Everyone is lazy and lax, exerting himself only for the sake of fame and profit. The Buddhadharma exists in name only; there’s no substance behind it. We are now holding a Chan session, and we want to cultivate the Buddhadharma in a down-to-earth manner so that we can reform the decadent trends of the Dharma-ending Age and turn it into the Proper Dharma Age.
All the dharmas in the world, if you know how to use them, are just the Buddhadharma. Yet people always behave in ways contrary to the Proper Dharma; they know only how to follow deviant teachings. To cultivate, one must do things truthfully. But right now we wear masks in everything we do. We aren’t able to practice the teachings ourselves and cultivate in earnest, so we end up harming others as well as ourselves. Our work here can be likened to carving a piece of jade, "cutting and filing, grinding and polishing," to make a shiny and useful object out of it.
Every one of us can become a Buddha, provided we work hard. Whoever works hard can become a Buddha, and whoever doesn’t cannot. Whoever cultivates can have attainment, and whoever doesn’t cannot. This seven-day Chan session is almost over. The second session is about to start. We should cherish the time and not let it pass in vain. Once it’s gone by, it’s not easy to get it back.