When the mind and the Buddha are two and
yet the same, he has well obtained the Middle Way. He is like someone
who endures something when it seems impossible to either hold it in or
let it out. This is called the Level of Patience.
When the mind and the Buddha are two and
yet the same, he has well obtained the Middle Way. The mind is
the Buddha; the Buddha is the mind. Although they are said to be two,
they come together as one. What is the mind is the Buddha. There is no
Buddha outside the mind; there is no mind outside the Buddha. The mind
and the Buddha are a single suchness. They are fused into one. At this
point, he has genuinely obtained the principle and substance of the
Middle Way. He has realized the Middle Way. He is like
someone who endures something when it seems impossible to either hold
it in or let it out. It is as if a situation arises which a
person must forbear: he’d like to keep it contained, but that is
impossible; at the same time, he cannot let it out. So he bears with
it. He’d like to keep it in his mind, and yet he’d like to release it.
He’d like to release it, and yet he also wants to keep it in his mind.
He can’t decide which would be the better thing to do. This is
called the Level of Patience. He’d like to let it go, but he
can’t give it up. He wants to keep it in, and yet he’d still like to
let it go. He must be patient. He must have mental forbearance. This is
the level of patience. It is the third of the four additional
practices. There is also the Level of Being First in the World, which
is discussed below.
Disciple: What does “as if
relying and yet not” mean?
Venerable Master: It’s as if he has
something to depend upon, a cause to rely upon, and yet he does not.
When numbers are destroyed, there are no
such designations as the Middle Way or as confusion and enlightenment.
This is called the Level of Being First in the World.
When numbers are destroyed:
Earlier in the Sutra, the measure of the Dharma Realm was destroyed.
Now all numbers and measures are destroyed. When all numbers are gone,
what is this? It’s the zero. I’ve talked about zero before. It is the
absence of numbers. At that point, there are no such
designations as the Middle Way or as confusion and enlightenment.Confusion,
enlightenment, and the Middle Way are left nameless. There is nothing
whatsoever. At that moment, perfection is total and the light
brilliant. It is more perfect than anything, and the light is brighter
than any other light. There are no designations left to speak of
because it’s simply zero. There’s nothing that can be said about zero.
Zero means the absence of everything. And yet everything inside and
outside the zero is contained within it. The zero is the mother of all
things. But it is not designated as a mother, because there isn’t
anything there. To understand what I’m saying right now is
There isn’t any confusion; there isn’t any
enlightenment. Why isn’t there any confusion? Because he is not
confused. Why isn’t there any enlightenment? He’s already enlightened;
what further enlightenment could there be? For there to be no confusion
and no enlightenment is zero. All the mountains, the rivers, the great
earth, the plants, and all the myriad appearances come forth from it.
There is no designation for enlightenment and
confusion, or for the Middle Way. Even though there’s no name for this
state, we still have to call it something, so we force the issue and
call itthe Level of Being First in the World. It’s
first in the world because there is no second. This is the last of the
Ananda, these good men have successfully
penetrated through to great Bodhi. Their enlightenment is entirely like
the Thus Come One’s. They have fathomed the state of Buddhahood. This
is called the Ground of Happiness.
Tonight we’re talking about the grounds, not about
the heavens. Ananda, these good men have successfully
penetrated through to great Bodhi. The “good men” are the
Bodhisattvas who have obtained the Level of Being First in the World.
Although the text says he has successfully penetrated through to great
Bodhi, there really isn’t anything that’s been penetrated through to.Their
enlightenment is entirely like the Thus Come One’s. Their
enlightenment is the Thus Come One; the Thus Come One is enlightenment.
They have become enlightened to that which the Thus Come One is
enlightened to. They can be called a Thus Come One when they have
enlightened to that zero. And yet the zero isn’t anything at all, so
don’t get attached to it!
They have fathomed the state of Buddhahood.True
Emptiness is the state of being nothing at all. But when they fathom
the state of a Buddha, then within True Emptiness arises Wonderful
Existence. That Wonderful Existence is happiness. “Oh, so originally
it’s just that way!” That’s the arising of happiness. “I didn’t
understand before, but now I do.” They are inexpressibly happy. This
is called the Ground of Happiness. It’s the first ground.
To be continued