And the destroyer of falsehood, evil, and ugliness. It is the arch enemy of what is false, evil, and ugly. False means not true. When others do good deeds, you do evil. Within what is good, you engage in evil and create trouble on purpose. Ugliness refers to trying to show off and striving for fame and gain. That's ugly. When people figure out what you are up to, they look down on you. You are like this because you don't understand the Dharma, and you only apply effort on a superficial level. If you have the tremendous energy of righteousness, then you will not be false, evil, and ugly. If you are false, evil, and ugly, then you lack the energy of righteousness.
Without it, Heaven and Earth would not be worthy of being Heaven and Earth. Without it, sages and worthies could not be called sages and worthies. Without it, righteous and superior men would not be righteous and superior men.
If ordinary, righteous people lack this tremendous righteous energy, then even if they become well-known, they are simply cheating the world with a phony name; they are not true.
Without it, kings and ministers would not be fit to be kings and ministers. If the leaders and high government officials of a nation lack tremendous, righteous energy, they will only bring harm to the people. If they lack such energy, they will only act in their own interests and grab power, position, fame and gain for themselves.
Upon attaining it, ordinary people become sages. By increasing it, sages and worthies can become Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. When ordinary people have the tremendous energy of righteousness, they can become sages. When sages and worthies cultivate and nourish their tremendous energy of righteousness, thereby bolstering it, they can become Buddhas and Bodhisattvas.
Why are you like a rakshasha ghost, whining and grumbling all day long? It's just because you don't understand the tremendous energy of righteousness.
Therefore, this tremendous energy of righteousness is the stepping-stone to Buddhahood and the basis for returning to the source and going back to the origin. Do you want to become a Buddha? Then you must first have the tremendous energy of righteousness. Do you want to go to the Land of Ultimate Bliss? Do you want to recognize your original face? If you possess the tremendous energy of righteousness, then you have a foundation for doing those things.
A verse in praise says:
The tremendous energy of righteousness nurtures the
qian and kun.
In ancient and present times, in China and abroad, only this is true.
With utmost strength and greatness, it nourishes without harming.
Illumining heaven and earth, it benefits the multitudes.
Spreading throughout the six directions,
it fills worlds as many as grains of sand.
Encompassing the myriad phenomena,
it pervades lands as many as motes of dust.
Cultivate and water the seeds of Bodhi.
Don't be negligent and don't be impatient;
simply realize that which has no traces.
The tremendous energy of righteousness nurtures the
qian and kun. Male and female, yin and yang, are all manifestations of
qian and kun, or Heaven and Earth. The tremendous energy of righteousness can give birth to Heaven and Earth and the myriad creatures, and can help people to become Buddhas, Patriarchs, and sages.
In ancient and present times, in China and abroad, only this is true. From ancient times until the present, in China and abroad, when people lack the tremendous energy of righteousness, they will cease to exist. Only with this tremendous righteous energy can one remain in the world forever. If people are alive in this world and lack this righteous energy, they would be better off dead. If you are devious and petty, you will only be a menace to the world because you only seek to benefit yourself. How can you consider yourself a Buddhist? Buddhists benefit others; they don't think about gaining advantages for themselves. The only genuine thing is this tremendous energy of righteousness.
With utmost strength and greatness, it nourishes without harming. Mencius said, "I skillfully nourish my tremendous energy of righteousness." As I speak to you right now, I am using my tremendous energy of righteousness. If it were not for that energy, I would not speak to you in this way. I am afraid of nothing. I am not afraid of heaven, earth, ghosts, demons, or monsters. Why not? Because I have this tremendous righteous energy. It is this energy that has enabled me to come to America to propagate the Buddhadharma. It is of the utmost greatness and strength. Nothing excels it. There is nothing firmer or with more relentless driving force. However, you must nurture it well; don't let the least bit of selfish desire get mixed in it. Don't be selfish. Don't seek personal gain. Don't exclusively look out for yourself and be unable to take even a small loss or a little suffering, hunger, or thirst. Otherwise, your tremendous energy of righteousness will get flattened. In Manchuria we have a term, "flattened eggplant," to describe this.
Illumining heaven and earth, it benefits the multitudes. If you have deviant energy, you will harm it. If you nurture it well, it will emit light that illumines heaven and earth and benefits all fellow living beings.
Spreading throughout the six directions, it fills worlds as many as grains of sand in the River Ganges.
Encompassing the myriad phenomena, it pervades lands as many as motes of dust. It is only a matter of whether or not you know how to use it.
Cultivate and water the seeds of Bodhi. | Don't be negligent and don't be impatient; simply realize that which has no traces. This tremendous, righteous energy is the Buddha nature. You have to cultivate and water it to nurture and develop it. Don't forget about it, and don't try to "help" it grow faster. Don't be like the farmer of the country of Song, who pulled his shoots up a little bit, hoping to help them grow faster. That won't work. Don't forget about them, but don't wish for them to grow more quickly either. You have to realize what is without traces. Let things happen naturally, without any trace of effort. Simply do away with devious energy, selfishness, the wish for personal gain, and all your deluded behavior, and that will be enough. That is to realize what is without traces, which does not involve deliberate effort.
The Book of Mencius speaks of the qualities of excellence, greatness, divineness, and spirituality. "What is full and abundant is called excellent." What is full and abundant? One's essence, energy, and spirit. The abundance of essence, energy, and spirit is excellence. "What is full and abundant and has a brilliance is called great." When one's essence, energy, and spirit are full and one radiates light, then one has the tremendous energy of righteousness and is said to be great. "When the great is transformed, it is called divine." When one is great and understands how to bring about transformations, then one possesses spiritual powers. With the miraculous functioning of spiritual powers, one is a divine sage. "What is divine and beyond comprehension is called spiritual." Having reached the divine state of sagehood, which cannot be comprehended, one is called spiritual. These are the qualities of excellence, greatness, divineness, and spirituality, which have, as their foundation, the tremendous energy of righteousness.