The Buddha understood very well the full capacity of his ears. The Shurangama Sutra explains that the six senses have interchangeable functions. For example, the ears can eat, the eyes can talk, and the skin can smell. It's incredibly wonderful. The "Worthy Leader Chapter" in the
Flower Adornment Sutra also talks about the wonderful functioning of a Bodhisattva who has directed his senses inward to hear his own nature.
This is the fundamental science of our own nature. Can we use it? If you practice in accord with the Buddha's method, you can. This is not a patented, privately-owned ability that you have to pay to have. It's not like I'd charge you NT $1000 to learn some esoteric mantra which can make your six senses work interchangeably. This is public knowledge. It's just that no one desires to use it or cultivate it.
The science of our own nature is our basic, inherent science. Have you ever opened up the
Flower Adornment Sutra to study this science? When you find a copy of the Sutra, you can look into it.
Therefore, I am suggesting that this major revolution in human history may be a revolution of wisdom. However, we may have to wait until some very intelligent college students such as yourselves decide to investigate and write Ph.D. dissertations on the Science of Our Own Nature and the revolution of wisdom. Try it out. The laboratory for these experiments is your own selves. Such research is tremendously valuable, and yet costs very little.
Maybe some of you were there during the winter Chan session of 1980. The Venerable Master Hua said that our Chan sessions at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas are pretty tough. I've heard that they are rather similar to the Chan sessions held in China in the past. We get up at 2:30 in the morning. The first sit starts at 3:00, and there are sits throughout the day until midnight. After two and a half hours of rest at night, we start sitting again the next morning. Every afternoon there is one hour's break. It's hard work, but we are trying to get past the gate of birth and death. If you can practice in CTTB's Chan session, which is in the tradition of "Gold Mountain's legs and Gaomin's incense" [China's Gold Mountain Monastery was renowned for its strictness in training practitioner's legs and Gaomin Monastery was known for its long and precisely timed incense sticks.], you have an opportunity to truly return to the source. It is an inconceivable experience. So, on the fifth day of the Chan session, people were arduously battling with either the demon of sleep or the demon of pain. It was the sit after lunch, and they were sleepy and trying not to doze off, forcing themselves to continue sitting. The Venerable Master came into the hall and said, "Do any of you know my state?" "Huh? What?" we thought. "None of you know my state, do you?" he asked. "No, Shifu." The Master sat down and gave us a talk. He said, "I'm basically the same as all of you, except for one little difference. From morning to night, I recite the Buddha's name without a break. The only difference is that, I know exactly how many times I've recited it. You know that I'm constantly reciting mantras. But I'm different from all of you because I don't recite a mantra, then have a false thought, then recite another mantra. I know exactly how many times I have recited the Great Compassion Mantra and the Shurangama Mantra. You all know that I constantly recite Sutras in my mind all day long. And I know exactly which chapter, section, and sentence I am on. How do you suppose I can be reciting the Buddha's name, mantras, and Sutras all at the same time? Don't you think I'm tired? Ah, what a pity!" We were speechless, wondering, "What is the state of being of the Master? How can he recite the Buddha's name, mantras, and Sutras all at the same time? Is it possible for the mind to do that?"
"Investigate! Look into it!" the Master hollered. "This is your inherent ability. It is the science of your own nature. Can you use it? Who is working at it?" Maybe you young scientists ought to try it out. Why spend your time in the laboratory using those chemical products and costly experimental apparatus when you haven't even understood the science of your own selves? Don't you feel that you are seeking Dharma outside the mind? Everyone, please investigate the science of your own natures. Amitofo!