Sutra text from last issue: Living beings, lacking blessings, under the many sufferings...
What is the fourth kind of demonic horde? Literally it is "thirsty love," intense thirst to have that kind of love and desire. Love! The more you think of it, the more hungry and thirsty you get. The more hungry and thirsty you become, the more you have thirsty love. Do you know now that you've had such daily involvement with a demon without realizing it?
The third was craving, literally "hunger and thirst," and the fourth is "thirsty love." What is the fifth? It's sleep. After thirsty love, you didn't expect it but you find yourself wanting to sleep all the time. You have no energy and just feel like dozing off. The sleep demon has appeared again and comes rushing out. Therefore, in cultivating the Way, don't start figuring you haven't had enough sleep. No matter how much you sleep, it won't be enough. I was like all of you when I was young. I would sleep for an entire day and not wake up. I slept for two days, three days, five days, seven days, and still would not awaken, still be the same way. That's the fifth demonic horde, which is sleep.
What is the sixth? After sleeping so much, you develop fear, for example being afraid someone is going to kill you. You are overcome by terror to the point of insanity. Everything makes you afraid. Fear presses in from the north, south, east, and west. You can't find any place where you feel free from fear--the center is even scarier! Thereupon you become suspicious.
The seventh horde is that of doubt, and it's a kind of paranoia. You sit somewhere then start to wonder, "Are they scolding me over there? Are they talking about me? Why are they so rude to me?" You find fault to the east, west, north and south, the four intermediate points, the zenith and the nadir. Whatever you see is all wrong. You've developed doubts, the seventh kind of demonic horde.
What is the eight demonic horde? It's being venomous, being full of poison. Benefit is the ninth type of demonic horde. That refers to cultivators being greedy for benefits, greedy for offerings from people, thinking for example, "If that rich person were to make an offering of a million dollars to me, all my problems would be solved!" So, benefit, being greedy for advantages and offerings, is the ninth kind of horde of demons.
What is the tenth? It's false popularity, being attached to a phony reputation, being greedy for empty fame. Putting oneself up very high is the tenth demonic horde. You become inflated with self-importance. "See how fantastic I am! Look at me! Between heaven and earth, I alone am honored!" That's self-exaltation, which is the tenth horde of demons. You should all count how many demonic hordes are following you. It's not permissible to have even one, not to mention many. Therefore, all of you should investigate these demonic hordes to see if you have been surrounded by them. If you can tame and subdue these demonic hordes, then that's keeping all the hordes of demons under control and gaining victory over them.
Good and Wise Advisors! Today here in America, Buddhism is afforded an excellent opportunity. Right now marks the beginning of Buddhism being genuinely transmitted from Asia to America. At the beginning, it is essential to make sure that the foundation is established well. The foundation must be strong so that it will withstand whatever winds and rains might rock it. What is the foundation of Buddhism? It is everyone's understanding of rules and regulations. The rules and regulations of Buddhism are its precepts, its vinaya. The precepts of Buddhism are found in its propriety. Confucianism states that there are, “Three hundred aspects to propriety and three thousand manners of awesome deportment.” Buddhism explains three thousand manners of awesome deportment and eighty thousand subtle aspects of comportment. The three thousand awesome deportment involve sternly guarding one's behavior in walking, standing, sitting, and lying down. To sternly guard awesome deportment is to sternly guard the precepts. The eighty thousand subtle aspects of comportment involve extremely fine details of ones behavior, too numerous to mention here.
Starting at the beginning as we are, we must maintain certain kinds of propriety toward our Good and Wise Advisors. Today we are greeting four leaders and good advisors of contemporary Buddhism. They are Venerable Baisheng, Chairman of the Taiwan Buddhist Association, Abbot of Shipu Monastery and Abbot of Jile Monastery in Penang; Dharma Master Wuyi, Abbot of Sanbao Monastery in Taiwan; Dharma Master Jiaoguang, President of the Hong Kong United Buddhist Association, President of the Hong Kong Zhengjiao Lotus Society. There is also the Elder Dharma Master Miaofu of Nantianzhu Monastery. These four Elder Dharma Masters are leaders and Good and Wise Advisors in contemporary Buddhism. The four of them have brought forth great compassion and come to the United States to create Dharma-affinities with the miserable living beings of Gold Mountain Monastery and the good men and faithful women of San Francisco.
This is a very good opportunity. When such a fine opportunity to draw near good advisors comes before us, we should definitely not miss it. On the occasion of this good opportunity, we want to practice the Proper Dharma. We should use our total and utmost sincerity to pay reverence and homage to these four Good and Wise Advisors. These four good advisors are the rarest advisors in the world! We should draw near them, make offerings, and bow to them as much as possible, so we can plant a field of blessings. And so this time we will use the most lofty of Buddhist rituals to welcome these four good advisors. We will be as reverent, solemn, and dignified in our manners as the Catholics are when they welcome the Pope. So every single one of us should bring forth our most true, sincere, and earnest mind to welcome these four good advisors!
All of you should pay special attention to this. We have reserved a reception room at the airport, and we'll take the four Good and Wise Advisors there so they can rest for awhile. We will arrange in advance with the airline so that when the plane arrives, the four of them will be the first to come off the plane. We will send two representatives to the entrance of the airport to welcome the four good advisors. This kind of etiquette, this kind of ceremonial ritual, has never been used before in Buddhism or by Buddhists. We are setting a historical precedent, writing a new page of history. This is something new in the history of Buddhism. All of you ought to be genuine, new Buddhists! In the future you can all become new Good and Wise Advisors who can lead American Buddhists. I say “new,” because there haven't been any like you before. Not only can you become new Good and Wise Advisors, you can also become Buddhas one day, and you can practice the Bodhisattva Way. This is all in the future. These are my hopes for you. If we conduct today's event very well, it will show that you Americans are very capable and insist on perfection in the things you do.
Guo Ning went down to Los Angeles to shine his light, and the lights put out by Guo Zhan and Guo Hu were not small either. We could say that today's event caused countless living beings to bring forth the Bodhi mind. It made a very good impression. By going ahead and doing what we said we were going to do, we caused the Chinese Buddhists and non-Buddhists to be moved in their hearts when they saw us.
At the point when Buddhism is just beginning, we need to do things like this and do them well. Guo Zhan has been tremendously busy these last few days, and there seems to be some success to show for it. By doing things in this way, he has caused Chinese Buddhists to feel remorseful. Even I feel remorseful.
The Buddha in a hairpore proclaims with wondrous sound.
His sound extends throughout the world, going everywhere,
Bringing fear and suffering of all types to an end.
The Spirit Pervasive Howling has this understanding.
The Wind-Ruling Spirit named Pervasively Howling Great Sound speaks this verse in praise of the Buddha in the Flower Adornment Assembly. He says: The Buddha in a hairpore proclaims with wondrous sound. We people have to speak with our mouths, and speaking Dharma is done with mouth and tongue. That's what most ordinary beings are able to do. But the Buddha can speak Dharma not only with his mouth, but with each and every one of his hairpores. Every single hairpore can proclaim the 84,000 Dharma-doors. Each hairpore can contain the Three Thousand Great Thousand World-System.
To be continued