The opponents of
are those with "discourses that incite rebellion."
For example, they say, "If you were to murder your father or
give your teacher a beating, you would be a great hero!"
Such discourses incite people to rebel. "Wreck the Buddha
image, and I will bow to you." This kind of discourse
encourages people to be destructive. In this case, the
disciples specialize in destroying the teacher. Nothing the
teacher says is right: "We disciples are much better and
much more intelligent than you." In the
lokayata sect, the
teacher concentrates on ruining the disciples. In the
opponents' sect, the disciples concentrate on ruining the
teacher. In both cases, slander is involved. The teacher
slanders the disciples, and the disciples think, "If we
don't return the favor, then we aren't acting properly." So
they come up with their rebellious discourses to slander
their teacher. "Don't listen to him, he doesn't have any
education. Listen to me." That's the opponents of
They also do not draw near to violent amusements such as
boxing and wrestling, to displays of martial arts that
involve mutual attack, to natas, or to any entertainment
that uses magic.
They also do not draw near to violent amusements
where mutual killing is involved,
such as boxing and
wrestling, where people fight and beat each other up in
public competitions or in movies and plays. One should not
go to see such things or listen to them. This includes going
to displays of
martial arts that involve mutual attack.
No wonder someone has brought up a criticism,
saying that we should not allow the
on Wesak (Buddha's birthday). This is very reasonable since
the Dharma Flower
Sutra prohibits it. However, we aren't Bodhisattvas.
This prohibition is only for Bodhisattvas. You should
understand this point. Right now we are still ordinary
people. Ordinary people do a lot of wrong things, and it's
okay. But we've got to change, and then it's actually okay.
If we don't change, then it's not okay. Nobody should say,
"The Dharma Master says it's okay, so let's go commit some
more offenses." That wouldn't do.
Or to natas.
is also a Sanskrit word; it means "man of great strength."
"You can lift five hundred pounds? Well, I can lift six
hundred." They're very boastful.
Natas also like to
show themselves off as great heroes whose strength is
unsurpassed. Bodhisattvas do not draw near to such people.
Or to any
entertainment that uses magic. Magicians can manifest
things out of nowhere or make things disappear. They have
many sleight-of-hand tricks. They try to get you to believe
that what you see is real. Children believe it's real, but
adults know it is an illusion—a magic trick. Bodhisattvas do
not watch that kind of show.
They do not draw near to chandalas; to those who raise pigs,
sheep, chickens, or dogs; or to those who hunt, fish, trap,
or engage in any other evil activities. If such people
should on occasion come to them, they speak the Dharma for
them, but they have no expectations.
They do not draw near to
are the lowest caste in the Indian caste system.
There were four main classes:
chandalas, which are outcasts, such as butchers. They
were restricted to their own paths and were not allowed to
walk on the roads that other people use. They even had to
wear signs on their heads identifying them as
chandalas. The Indian caste system is extremely rigid. Bodhisattvas
do not draw near to
those who raise pigs, sheep, chickens, or dogs; or to those
who hunt. Bodhisattvas do not raise chickens, dogs,
pigs, or sheep, and they must not hunt.
You say, "But the Great Master, the Sixth
Patriarch, lived with hunters and hunted for sixteen years."
The Great Master, the Sixth Patriarch, did live with
hunters, but he himself did not hunt.
A previous passage said that Bodhisattvas do not
draw near to kings, princes, great ministers, and officials.
The Sixth Patriarch of China was invited several times to
the palace by Empress Wu Zetian, and he never went. The
Fourth Patriarch was also invited to the palace four or five
times by the Emperor Tai Zong of the Tang dynasty, and he
never went. They were following the rule set forth here in
The Dharma Flower
Sutra that Bodhisattvas should not draw near to kings,
princes, great ministers, and officials.
Bodhisattvas do not draw near to those who catch
fish, trap birds,
or engage in any other evil activities. A contemporary example of
"other evil activities" are those who call themselves monks,
dress up in outlandish costumes, act very strangely, play
instruments, and beg for money.
If such people should
on occasion come to them, the Bodhisattvas Mahasattvas,
they speak Dharma for them, but they have no expectations. One may
speak the Buddhadharma for them, but one should not seek
anything at all from them.
To be continued