萬佛城金剛菩提海 Vajra Bodhi Sea


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An Essay of Exhortation to Bring Forth the Bodhi Resolve

古杭梵天寺沙門實賢 撰 By Shramana Shixian of the Brahma Heaven Monastery in Ancient Hangzhou
宣公上人講 1985年1979年合併版 Explained by the Venerable Master Hua in 1985 and 1979
國際譯經學院記錄翻譯 Translated by the International Translation Institute




「大眾誠能不棄我語」:你若能聽,不把我所說的話忘了。「則菩提眷屬從此聯 姻」:那菩提的眷屬從此大家都聯姻在一起,做親戚了。「蓮社宗盟」:這蓮社大家在一起同樣地發願,同樣地念佛。「自今締好」:從現在也就結盟了。「所願同生淨土」:大家一起生到淨土。「同見彌陀」:大家同見阿彌陀佛。「同化眾生」:然後再一起來教化眾生。「同成正覺」:一起成佛。「則安知未來三十二相」:安知,就是你怎麼能知道,未來你能成佛,得到三十二相,和佛的相好莊嚴是一樣的。「百福莊嚴,不從今日發心立願」:不從今日發這個菩提心,立這個菩提願。「而始也」:從今天開始呢?你將來成佛,都是從今天開始。「願與大眾共勉之」:願和大家一起勉勵,好好地發願,不退失菩提心,好好往前去前進,勇猛精進「幸甚幸甚」:我們大家都很幸運的,大家都很吉祥的。


To be confused and unenlightened is pitiful. If we are muddled and unenlightened, it's really pathetic because we don't even realize how we are. But to know and still not cultivate is even more sad. When we know that we should make vows yet fail to do so, that's even sadder!

If we fear the suffering in the hells, then vigor will naturally come forth. Vigor will naturally arise when we are afraid of the bitter retribution of the hells. When we are mindful of the speed of impermanence, then laziness will not arise. If we realize that impermanence will soon be upon us, we certainly will not be lazy. Further, we should use the Buddhadharma to encourage ourselves and associate with wholesome friends as our guides. Moreover, we need to use the Buddhadharma to urge ourselves on and associate with good friends to help each other. Relying on them to the ends of our days without even momentarily forsaking them, there will be no need to fear retreat. We should not neglect this Dharma door for even a moment, but rely on the Buddhadharma for our whole life. That way, we will not retreat.

Do not say that one thought is a trifle. Don't think a single thought of making vows is insignificant. Don't assume that vows are empty and of no benefit. If our resolves are true, then we can realize our goal. If our intention for making vows is genuine, then our goal will be firm. When our vows are vast in scope, then our practice will be profound. By making great vows, we will become more vigorous and our practice will be more profound as well. Space is not big, but the mind-king is. The mind-king has no limit. Vajra is not durable, but our vow-power is. Vajra is the most durable material in the world, but it is not as solid as the power of our vows. If we always remember our vows, then they will really be strong.

Great assembly! If each of you can sincerely accept my words, if you won't forget what I have said, then from now on, let us all pledge fraternity in the retinue of Bodhi. Let us become each other's relatives. May all the members of the Lotus Society unite. Everybody can make identical vows and recite the Buddha's name. Let us vow to be reborn in the Pure Land, to see Amitabha Buddha, to transform living beings, and to realize Proper Enlightenment together. We can all become Buddhas together. How do we know that our future perfection of the Thirty-two Marks and the adornments of the hundred blessings does not begin on this day that we resolved our minds and made our vows? How can we know that our future realization of Buddhahood, attainment of Thirty-two Marks, and perfection of the adornments of hundred blessings which are identical to the Buddhas' does not begin on this day when we resolved our minds and made vows for Bodhi? They all start today. May the members of the great assembly urge each other on. I hope that everybody can encourage one another to make vows and not retreat from your resolve for Bodhi. We should all progress diligently. How lucky we are! We are truly fortunate.

To be continued


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