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《上人法雨》

 

VENERABLE MASTER'S DHARMA RAIN

宣公上人開示選輯

Excerpts from the Venerable Master Hua Lectures

化一個坐具之地
To Seek a Sitting Cloth's Worth of Ground

摘錄自六祖壇經淺釋 Excerpted from the Sixth Patriarch's Sutra

六祖大師到了寶林山曹溪,看見所住的房舍,寮房很少,也都殘缺破壞,不能住太多人,所以他就要把它擴大。於是乎就走到里人陳亞仙那兒。里人,就是南華寺那個地方的鄉下人。去見陳亞仙,對他就說了:「老僧我啊!想找一塊坐具之地,不知你能不能捨呢?」

陳亞仙就說:「你坐具有多大呢?你的坐具有幾許闊啊?」

六祖大師,就把坐具給他看。他說這好辦,你只要坐具的一個地方,這是沒有問題。亞仙唯然,就答應了。

六祖大師說:「你答應了?那好!就要這麼一個坐具的地方啦!」於是乎把這個具一打開,遍罩南華四境。這個面積我也不確實知道有多大,總而言之,四大天王都現身了,站在四方。

陳亞仙一看這樣情形,就說:「好了,我知道和尚你的法力無邊,但是我的高祖墳墓在這個地方,希望你以後建造寺廟,還保留這個墳墓,那麼其餘的地方我都捨了,我都布施出來。」

講到這個地方,你們大家不知道有什麼感想?六祖大師只化一個坐具的地方,之後居然他這個具就長得那麼大,遮蓋四境,這是不是一個欺騙呢?好像地藏王菩薩化九華山,聽說也是這樣子。那麼在佛教的祖師、菩薩遊戲人間,這好像有一種賭博的性質,和人說這樣子,又不這樣子。我有點,不敢同意這種的法力,我不知道你們各位看法是如何?我們大家要互相研究研究,誰有什麼意見,可以提出來說一說。這個祖師、菩薩,為什麼他說一個坐具的地方,可是一展開具,卻遮了那麼多的地方?各位,我們來共同研究研究這個問題。在佛教裏,是不是以訛傳訛,這麼道聽而塗說,把這個事情就弄得越講越神祕。

不要在那個地方好像無動於衷似的,要講話的講話,現在不是入定的時候啊!

弟子:六祖可能跟陳亞仙有緣,希望給陳亞仙一個布施的機會,譬如他布施的地方大,所以他的功德就大,給陳亞仙做大功德。

上人:我現在給你種福田的機會怎麼樣?你種不種?

弟子:謝謝。種。

上人:還有誰,快講。快一點,快一點!還有誰要說你的看法,不要等著叫名字。這西方是民主式的國家,我們誰願意說什麼就說什麼,無拘無束,用你的智慧,來說出一個真理來。

問題就是:六祖大師向陳亞仙化緣,他出家人應該不打妄語。他拿出那個具,就那麼坐的一個地方;等一打開了呢,就把南華寺那幾十里,都給蓋住了,蓋到四境,四大天王現身,在四方那兒坐鎮,說有這樣情形。有人說是地藏菩薩向閔公化緣,也是用坐具,一罩就把九華山都給罩住了,罩著全九華山都成了那個坐具底下的土地了。坐具本來你們都看見了,那不是很大的一個地方,方圓連一丈也沒有。可是他把它打開,遮蓋了幾十里路那麼大一個面積,我認為祖師不應該打這個大妄語,這是我的看法,你們各位看法是怎麼樣?

方才這位居士說,大約六祖大師和陳亞仙有緣,叫他多種福田,所以就向他化大緣。那麼隨時我這個智慧就來了,我說我要向你化小緣,你種不種福田?他說他種。那麼種的福田是多大?我不知道。等到將來,不要寫出來像六祖大師用具罩住那樣,這麼大一個地方。萬佛城這個面積是將近五百多英畝,也是不小的一個地方;可是我沒有這個本事,我也沒有這個具,也不能罩這麼多的地方,你們說這怎麼辦?

六祖大師:「老僧想找一塊坐具之地,不知你能不能捨呢?」
陳亞仙:「您坐具有多大呢?」
The Sixth Patriarch said:This Old Monk comes to seek a sitting cloth's worth of ground. Can you give it?
Yaxian Chen asked, "How big is your sitting cloth?"

When the Sixth Patriarch arrived at Baolin (Precious Forest) in Caoxi (Cao Creek), he saw that the few buildings that were there were dilapidated and insufficient to contain the multitude. Wishing to enlarge them, he paid a visit to the villager Yaxian Chen, who lived near Nanhua Monastery, and said, "This Old Monk comes to seek a sitting cloth's worth of ground. Can you give it?"

Yaxian Chen asked, "How big is your sitting cloth?"

The Great Master showed his sitting cloth to Yaxian Chen, who said, "If you only want that large a piece of land, fine."

The Great Master said, "Yes, I only want that much land." But when he spread it out, the sitting cloth covered all the area around Nanhua Monastery. I don't know how exactly much land it was, but in any case, the Four Heavenly Kings appeared and stood guard in each of the four directions.

When Yaxian Chen saw this, he said, "I know that the High Master's Dharma power is great. However, the burial ground of my great-great grandfather lies on this land. In the future, if you build a stupa or temple here, I hope that this area will remain undisturbed. As for the rest, I wish to give it all to you."

Having lectured to this point, I wonder if anyone has any thoughts on this. The Sixth Patriarch asked for a sitting cloth's worth of ground, and later his sitting cloth expanded to cover the land on all four sides. Isn't that a bit like cheating? It's said that Earth Store Bodhisattva obtained the Jiuhua mountain range in the same way. The way these Buddhist Patriarchs and Bodhisattvas playfully roam through the world seems a bit like gambling--they say one thing, but then it turns out another way. I can hardly agree with their use of Dharma powers. I wonder what everyone else thinks about this. Let's all look into this together. Whoever has an opinion can bring it up. Why is it that a Patriarch or a Bodhisattva can ask for a sitting cloth's worth of ground and then open up his sitting cloth and have it cover so much land? Let's investigate this question together. In Buddhism, should we spread rumors and make things sound more and more mystical? None of you should act as if this doesn't concern you. If you have something to say, speak up. Now is not the time to enter samadhi!

Disciple: Maybe the Sixth Patriarch had affinities with Yaxian Chen and wanted to give him an opportunity to give. If he gave a large piece of land, then he would have a lot of merit and virtue. He wanted to help Yaxian Chen create great merit and virtue.

Venerable Master: If I gave you an opportunity to plant blessings now, would you plant them?

Disciple: Yes, thank you, I would.

Venerable Master: Who else has an opinion? Hurry and speak! Don't wait for me to call on you. We're in a democratic country, and people can say whatever they want. There are no restrictions. Use your wisdom to speak about true principle.

The problem is that when the Sixth Patriarch asked for land from Yaxian Chen, he took out his sitting cloth and asked for only enough ground to sit on. As a left-home person (a monk), he should not lie. Yet when he opened the sitting cloth, it covered not only Nanhua Monastery, but all the land within ten miles of where they stood. And it's said that the Four Heavenly Kings appeared and stood guard in each of the four directions. People say that when Earth Store Bodhisattva asked for land from Lord Wen, he also opened his sitting cloth, and it covered the entire Jiuhua mountain range. Basically, as you can see, the sitting cloth is not very large--not even ten square feet. Yet when he opened it, it covered an area of several tens of miles. In my opinion, a Patriarch should not tell such a blatant lie. What are your opinions?

Earlier the layman said that the Sixth Patriarch probably had affinities with Yaxian Chen and wanted him to plant a lot of blessings, and that was why he asked for such a great gift of land. I responded by saying I wanted to ask for a small gift from him, and I asked him whether he was willing to plant blessings. He said he would. Now how great are the blessings he planted? I don't know. But it won't be as great an area as the Sixth Patriarch covered with his sitting cloth. The City of Ten Thousand Buddhas is nearly five hundred acres, which is not a small place. But I don't have that kind of power, and I don't have a sitting cloth that can cover so much area, so what do you think I should do?

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