明天開始，由慧僧法師來教唱念、講經的儀式，五點鐘開始教到六點半，咱們這兒在四點半去接他來到這個地方，或者四點二十分，早十分鐘，或者晚間早一點去接他，所有願意要學唱念的人都要認真去學，不要馬馬虎虎的，因為你把它學明白了，不用是可以的，你不要用的時候不明白。學的人也不要現出一種很奇怪的樣子，好像見所未見、聞所未聞的，好像某某法師那天來說一句臭鹹菜，有一位就說從來沒有聽過。這樣子一講，真是倒架子。他所講的也沒有超出去我們平時所研究的這些道理，就是換一個臭鹹菜這麼一個名字，這有什麼不得了呢？就說從來沒有聽過，這樣子你就太不懂道理了。學唱念也是這樣子，學是學，不要大驚小怪的，好像非常驚奇，人家看到會認為真是不懂事情，什麼都不懂。學是不妨學，但是不要大驚小怪的。還有我講經，講《華嚴經》，因為近幾個禮拜，我有一點旁的事情要做一做，所以禮拜二放香，禮拜四也放香，禮拜六不放香，一個禮拜還是放兩次香。本來以前是放一次，禮拜六我不講，這一次兩天，禮拜二和禮拜四。這兩天可以由果瞻來講，願意講什麼都可以的，不罵人就可以，不要像果寧一到法座，又罵比丘、又罵比丘尼、又罵居士：男居士、女居士，所以現在他不能講了，就因為他罵人，盡找人家的毛病，他自己的毛病一點都不知道，所以現在叫他閉關去，不閉關就跳金門橋，不跳金門橋就閉關，這兩個道理，所以試驗這幾個禮拜看一看。唱念要好好地學，接送法師的人，在這個車上無論接誰，接送客人、或者某某法師、某某居士，在車上少講話，車上不是談話的地方，車上一談話，駕車就很容易發生意外，你若發生意外，人家就說：「喔！你看他們金山寺的車，一樣 have accident，他們有什麼感應啊？」所以我們要小心一點，不要弄出毛病來，在車上最好無論那一位，接送客人最好不講話，他要和你講話，你就跟他說：「我這個司機不能講話，因為這個城裡人太多、車太多，你不小心就碰到人，或者碰到車了。」這是很正確的理由，免得發生事故人家笑，這是一點。還有下個禮拜天，果滿他們有四個人從香港來，是十一點十五分，你們幾位比丘尼願意去歡迎這個沙彌尼可以去。不過你們要早一點吃飯，在廟上十點鐘吃飯，吃完飯十點半鐘就去，十點半去大約來得及，去歡迎她們就這個事情。
The Thus Come One's light of wisdom which is limitless
Can destroy the net of living beings' stupidity and delusions,
Saving and protecting all within the world.
This is what Solid Dharma maintained and spoke about.
The Buddha's, the Thus Come One's light of wisdom which is limitless can destroy the net of living beings' limitless
stupidity and karma of delusions. We living beings in the world have been netted by the net of ignorance, stupidity, and creation of karma, much like fish caught from the sea in a fishnet. In the world we have been scooped up from the sea of wisdom by the net of our stupidity and karma of delusions, which are too heavy. Once caught, we become stupid and can't get out of the net of that stupidity. That is, we can't escape from the Three Realms---the Desire Realm, the Form Realm and the Formless Realm, because the net of stupidity covers us.
The Buddha uses the limitless light of wisdom to destroy that net of stupidity,
saving and protecting all in the world of sentient beings so they achieve liberation.
This kind of state is what the Garuda King
Solid Dharma maintained and spoke about. It's the door of liberation he entered and the state he obtained.
The citadels of Dharma are vast and great and inexhaustible.
They have more various kinds of gates than could be counted.
The Thus Come One appears in the world to open them widely.
This is what Wondrous Cowl-Crown could understand and enter.
A citadel of Dharma is a city where Dharma is spoken, where Dharma is propagated. Any Way Place is a citadel of the Buddha's Dharma. That's why the text says:
The citadels of Dharma are vast and great and inexhaustible. The Buddha spoke Dharma for forty-nine years, pronouncing Sutras in over three hundred assemblies. Everywhere he went he established citadels of the Dharma, blowing the great Dharma conch, beating the great Dharma drum, and setting up great banners of the Dharma. Thus it's said, "He founded citadels of Dharma place after place, and broke through nets of doubt layer by layer. The cities of Dharma are inexhaustible---they never come to an end; and
they have more various kinds of gates than could be counted. How many gates are there in all? Cities must have gates or how could people go in and out? Without gates they would be ghost towns. Citadels of Dharma must have open doors, not closed ones. Only if the gates are opened can the Dharma circulate. There are 84,000 doors of Dharma, and each and every door can lead directly to the fruition of Buddhahood. No matter what Dharma you cultivate, if you cultivate it truly, you can have accomplishment. For that reason the doors are described as being countless.
The Thus Come One appears in the world to open them widely. The Tathagata in the world greatly expands the citadels of Dharma and proclaims the Dharma, enabling living beings to be free from suffering, attain bliss, end birth, cast off death, and ultimately become Buddhas.
This is what the Garuda King Wondrous Cowl-Crown could understand and enter. He understood this kind of liberation door.
Starting tomorrow, Dharma Master Hui Seng will come to teach the ceremony for Sutra lectures. Whoever wants to study this should do so seriously, and not be haphazard about it. It's permissible to master the ceremony but not use it; but don't let it happen that when the time comes to use it you haven't understood it. Also, when you are learning it, don't act like it's something utterly new and startling which you've never seen or heard of before. For example, when a certain Dharma Master came here to lecture, he talked about a stinking salted vegetable. One disciple told him she'd never heard of it before. When you say something like that, you lose face for us. What he talked about was not beyond the principles which we investigate here all the time. All he did was change the name and refer to it as a stinking salted vegetable---what's so fantastic about that? But she said, "We've never heard of that before." When you do that, you really don't understand. Studying ceremonies is the same. You can study them, but don't act really surprised by them, or people will see you as not understanding anything.
Lately I have taken just one night off from lecturing a week, but now for the next few weeks I have something else to do, and will take two nights off. A certain disciple can lecture, as long as he doesn't scold people. He can't act like a certain other disciple who, as soon as he took the Dharma seat, started scolding the Bhikshus, the Bhikshunis, the laymen and the laywomen. That person's been taken off from lecturing, due to his propensity to scold. He just found fault with others, and was unaware of his own shortcomings. Now he's trying out seclusion for a few weeks, the only other alternative being jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge.
When you are picking guests up, driving them back, or driving them anywhere, whether they are Dharma Masters or laypeople, don't talk much in the car. A car is not the place for conversation. As soon as you start talking, it's easy to have an accident. If that happens, everyone will say, "Oh, you see, cars from Gold Mountain Monastery can have accidents like anyone else. What response do they have?" So be careful; don't create problems. The best is not to talk at all in the car with guests, no matter who it is. If they want to talk to you, just tell them, "I can't talk while I'm driving because there are too many cars and too many people in the city. If I don't pay attention, I'll hit someone or run into a car." That's a very valid reason, to avoid accidents and ridicule. Also, four people, including a Shramanerika, will be arriving from Hong Kong at 11:50 next Sunday, and the Bhikshunis may go to welcome them, but you will have to eat lunch earlier. If you eat in the temple at 10:00 and finish by 10:30, you will probably have enough time to go welcome them.
All Buddhas have a single Dharma Body,
The sameness of True Thusness without differentiations.
The Buddhas through this power constantly abide,
The King Swiftly Appearing Everywhere spoke about this fully.
All Buddhas have a single Dharma body. All Buddhas of the ten directions and three periods of time share one and the same Dharma body; and the Buddhas' Dharma body has no differentiations. As analogy for this is the way the lights from all lamps are one brightness. There is no distinction between one brightness and another. One's brightness is another's brightness, and that one's brightness is also the brightness of the first: The Buddhas' Dharma body is like that brightness of lamps which has no distinctions to it. That's why the text says that all Buddhas have a single Dharma body. The light of all the Buddhas's wisdom is one, and all Buddhas have a single sound. For that reason, there is no distinction between Buddhas, for they all have
the sameness of True Thusness without differentiations. The nature of Buddhas is True Thusness, and it is sameness. The sameness of True Thusness is one, without distinctions. Buddhas are not like we living beings who discriminate this and that, you, and me, and living beings, and lifespans. For a Buddha, all is the same. Therefore it is said that all Buddhas of the ten directions and three periods of time share a single Dharma body, which is exactly what is being discussed in this text.
The Buddhas through this power constantly abide. The Buddhas, relying on this kind of power of the sameness of True Thusness, this state of non-differentiation, constantly abide in the same way, always securely settled in this state.
The Garuda King Swiftly Appearing Everywhere spoke about this fully. He was able to completely describe this door of liberation.
Formerly the Buddha gathered in beings in all existences,
Radiating light everywhere throughout all the worlds.
With various expedients he displayed taming and subduing.
Contemplating the Seas awakened" to this supreme Door of Dharma:
Formerly the Buddha gathered in beings in all existences. In the past the Buddha used all of the existences, existence in the Desire Realm, existence in the Form Realm, and existence in the Formless Realm, to gather in and teach living beings. There is a saying which goes, "If you wish to bring someone into the Buddha's wisdom, first bait the book with something that person likes." You might want a particular living being to obtain the wisdom of a Buddha, but if you simply tell him to study it, he won't listen to you. "What's the wisdom of a Buddha?" he will say. "What's the difference between the Buddha's wisdom and mine? My wisdom's greater and higher than the Buddha's, so why should I study the Buddha's wisdom?" Consequently you need to use an expedient method. If you want him to obtain the wisdom of a Buddha, first give him some advantages, a little something he likes. For example, beings all like honey, so you begin by inviting him to eat some honey. After eating it, he's delighted and says, "This honey is really good! How did you get it?"
Then you tell him, "This honey was produced from the Buddha's wisdom." When he hears you say that, his reaction is, "Oh! The Buddha's wisdom can produce honey! Then I want to study the Buddha's wisdom. How can I obtain it?" So you tell him, "You need to practice giving, holding precepts, patience, vigor, dhyana-samadhi, and wisdom. Perfect those Six Paramitas, and you will have the Buddha's wisdom." This is an analogy. Don't think that there is really honey to eat, to the point that you spill the honey all over the stairs as you eat. Then you are too attached to this honey. This is what's called, "If you wish to bring someone into the Buddha's wisdom, first bait the book with something he likes." That's how the Buddha taught and transformed living beings, using expedients.
Radiating light everywhere throughout all the worlds, with various expedients he displayed taming and subduing. The Buddha used all kinds of expedients to tame all living beings, causing them to renounce the deviant and return to the proper, get rid of falseness and retain earnest, and turn back from confusion and return to enlightenment.
Contemplating the Seas awakened to this Supreme Door of Dharma. This Dharma Door is especially supreme. This kind of state is also especially rare. Being so supreme and rare, this is the liberation door that the Garuda King Contemplating the Seas was able to understand, awaken to, and enter.