established 或者 dwell
處），也可以說是定，在這定中，在這samadhi （三昧），這意思都可以的。但是你要是翻譯英文，若一定說是 peaceful
settled in。可是那個梵文的字，我不記得。Settled 就是那個安，也有平安的意思。你們看書就應該可以找得到。
From last issue: Venerable
Master: Would any of you like to comment on the meaning of any of the
four passages of Sutra text that were lectured today about the four
Emptiness-Ruling Spirits? If so, bring up your opinions quickly for us
to investigate together.
Venerable Master: What single
meaning? How would it be translated?
Heng Yin: We could say
“established,” which has the meaning of residing in a location without
moving. What I don’t quite understand is whether the two characters
from a single meaning unit, or whether the meaning of each individual
character is intended.
Venerable Master: Ask your
American Sage. How about this? Who is the Sage? Sage, speak up. You’re
not talking? Then the left-over person [Note: “left-over” sounds the
same as “Sage” in Chinese] should talk. Who’s the left-over person?
Heng Hsien: Master, sometimes a
peaceful dwelling could be translated as aranya. Sometimes there are
Venerable Master: Aranya? An
aranya is a still and quiet place.
Heng Yin: It’s because sometimes
安住 an zhu occurs in 安住道場 an zhu dao chang, and to say “peacefully
dwelling” for that didn’t sound very smooth in English.
Venerable Master: Oh. Then what
should it be?
Heng Yin: Maybe we could say
Venerable Master: Established?
What does “established” mean?
Heng Yin: It means being
stationed in one place without moving.
Heng Ching: Master, I think I
also asked this question before. If the character 安 an in a certain
passage of text is conveying the meaning of 平安 ping an, then 安 an
should be translated “peacefully.” However, when, as in this passage,
the meaning of peace is not prominent, her idea is that it’s possible
to use a translation like “established” or “dwelling.” But she’s right.
If those two characters are translated as those two words in English,
it doesn’t sound very good. Also, the meaning of “peaceful” may not be
present in all cases.
Venerable Master: Here it means
Heng Ching: Yes.
Venerable Master: It’s related to
the words “apart form obstacles.” If one has obstacles, one cannot be
unmoving, and one won’t be able to 安住 an zhu “dwell securely.” Without
obstacles one can 安住 an zhu “securely dwell.” 安住 an zhu in this context
means not moving. Not moving means stillness, and so it could refer to
being still and quit. Just now Gwo Pu (Heng Hsien) said it was aranya,
a still and quiet place. One could also say it is samadhi, to be in
concentration. All those meanings are possibilities. However, when
translating into English if you insist on the words “peacefully
dwelling,” it’s true that the meaning is not completely conveyed, and
that isn’t the best way to say it. What was the translation you
suggested for this context? Esta...?
Heng Ching: Established.
Venerable Master: “Established”
is one word, right?
Heng Ching: Yes, it’s one word.
Venerable Master: And it isn’t
the meaning 安 an, but just the meaning of 住 zhu?
Heng Ching: The main meaning of
“established” is that of being set up.
Venerable Master: Does it have
the meaning of 安 an?
Heng Ching: Not really. But I
remember that there is a word which has that meaning. In Sanskrit there
is such a word. I don’t remember the Sanskrit, but the translation is
“settled in,” the way a bird settles into its nest and doesn’t move.
I’ve forgotten the Sanskrit for it, but it occurs in the Great Prajna
Sutra. The word has the meaning of being settled somewhere in a secured
manner. The English translation is “settled in,” but I don’t remember
the Sanskrit. “Settled in” has the meaning of “secured” and also of
peacefulness. You can find it in the book, in the notes.
Venerable Master: I think you
don’t have to use “peaceful dwelling,” and she also says “no” to this.
You need to investigate what the context here requires, and then you
can reach a decision. Who else has an opinion?
Heng Ching: I do. I see a bit of
a contradiction in Heng Shou’s explanation just now. If I understand
correctly, what he said was, “She enters into nonattachment to
everything.” But if nonattachment were something you could enter into,
then there would still be a place which is entered. However, if there
is a place, then an attachment still remains, and the nonattachment
becomes an attachment. So I think it should not be explained that way,
but another way.
Venerable Master: Tell us your
other way of explaining it. Both of you are sheng ren, one a Sage, and
the other a left-over [Note: same sound in Chinese].
Heng Ching: Universal entry into
everything is one meaning, indicating there is no place she is unable
to enter. Being without attachment refers to how even though she can
enter into every mode of dwelling, each and every location, every
single spot—even though she universally enters every single one, she is
not attached to that ability. Another possible interpretation is that
she doesn’t become attached to any place even after she has entered it.
The words “strength of blessings and virtue” come before that in
translating into English. She has that kind of ability, and it is
because she has such blessings and virtue that she possesses the
ability to enter into everything universally. Not only does she enter
into everything, she does so without any attachment. It’s not entry
into nonattachment. If there were entry into some “nonattachment,” that
“nonattachment” would be an attachment still remaining. It’s a minor
problem, but nonetheless a problem, although he says it isn’t a problem.
Venerable Master: [to Heng Ching]
Explain it in English, [Note: The previous exchange had been in
Chinese] and let them evaluate. [To the assembly] I’m notifying all of
you in advance—get ready to judge the two of them. The best thing would
be to knock one of them to the ground with your critiques. Now I’m
giving you a chance to stand up and present a rebuttal, to bring up
objections and evaluate the way the two of them spoke.
Disciple: …[The tape is unclear.]
Venerable Master: It’s impossible
for both of them to be right. One must be right and the other wrong.
Heng Ching: He says he was
wrong. [Note: Heng Shou wants to speak.]
Venerable Master: You may speak,
but do so quickly.
Heng Shou: Okay, I didn’t express
my point very well.
Venerable Master: Don’t be
Heng Shou: As to “Strength of
blessings and virtue for universal entry to everything without
attachment,” just now I was explaining “universal entry to everything
without attachment.” Now here it is talking about the kind of power
from blessings and virtue to enter universally into nonattachment to
anything. Since she has no attachments, she has a state of
nonattachment—such blessings. And such blessing and virtue are uniquely
supreme. Furthermore, the kind of power she has is unobstructed, and so
she has the power of blessings and virtue to universally enter into
nonattachment to anything.
Heng Ching: That explanation is
Venerable Master: On what grounds
are you objecting?
Heng Ching: On grammatical
Venerable Master: On grammatical
Heng Ching: Yes.
Venerable Master: Did you ever
hear a principle similar to this before?
Heng Ching: Which principle?
Venerable Master: The liberation
doors which I’m talking about are doors to liberation without
doors—none. There can’t be liberation. That’s how I explained it
before. Did you hear that doctrine previously?
Heng Ching: If I heard it, I
didn’t think of it.
Venerable Master: You didn’t
think of it? What you said today is not bad. All three interpretations
are still limitless and boundlessly many interpretations. If we tried
to present them all, we would never finish. However, the literal
interpretation which he (Heng Shou) just gave was of you Westerners’
English. To English-speakers it would sound as if there were problems
in the way it was expressed. But the Chinese sounded fine. Also,
without having heard this lectured before, for him to be able to
lecture it that way was not bad. If you have never heard it lectured
and, upon starting to lecture it, are still able to explain it like
that, for others to critique you is a victory for you. The victory is
yours. And you, the Sage, from start to finish are a left-over.
Heng Ching: As to this question,
I have a…
Venerable Master: A judgement?
Heng Ching: No. In Chinese, we
see that every phrase can be interpreteed in many ways. But when
translating, it’s not easy to express that many meanings in a single
English phrase. Therefore if, in translating, some meanings are lost,
what can one do? That’s because sometimes when the text is changed
during translation, the meaning is also changed.
Venerable Master: When you don’t
understand, and there are places you can’t make sense of, I’ll give you
a secret method. But you’re not allowed to tell them. The secret is,
Heng Ching: What was that?
Venerable Master: Don’t think.
The myriad things, when contemplated in stillness, are all obtained of
themselves. Do you understand? It all depends on whether you can be
still or not. Do you understand?
Heng Ching: I understand.
Venerable Master: Do the rest of
you understand? Gwo Hu, do you understand?
Heng Shou: [Asks if it is the
character for thinking—this has all been in Chinese without English
translation so far.]
Venerable Master: Don’t ask what
it is! Do you understand or not?
Heng Shou: I understand.
Venerable Master: Really? What is
Heng Shou: Not to translate
according to that meaning.
Venerable Master: You didn’t get
it. What you say won’t work. [to Heng Ching] So I transmitted the
method directly to you, and you received it directly. Not one of you
understood the method.
Heng Ching: Okay!
Venerable Master: You’re all
lazy. Your eyes are lazy, so are you hands, and your minds are even
lazier. They think, “It doesn’t matter if we sleep.”
To be continued