In the gap between two thoughts, thought-free wakefulness manifests unceasingly.

— Milarepa

一種生,萬般死,果報各不同
地清法師

人道的福報不是指擁有多少,而是享有;享有不是佔有,是可以自在,可以信因果,可以開朗、樂觀,才是享有的功德。有些人看似擁有物質的福報,但是他的內心很窮,俗語所謂:「好額身軀,散赤心。散赤身軀,好額心(台語音)。」

因為他不能享有自在的心地安樂,他無法享有心地的健康,他不能享有功德的殊勝,萬德莊嚴的福報。畜生的修報比較有人道做依報,而人道的修報比較有自力,這也是差在人道的修報比較有力,有鋪橋造路、孝順父母,累積功德,這是修報也是自力功德、自力的修善,也是阿彌陀佛四十八大願的第十九願:「若有眾生欲生我國,修持萬行發菩提心。」那就是自力。而第十八願是他力,至心信禮叫他力,所以畜生是靠人道的他力,我們人道是靠佛的他力圓滿功德,畜牲的他力是靠人道的助緣。所以一關比一關殊勝,由此可見畜牲要靠我們的助緣就可離苦得樂。

來談談地獄報,人道三百六十五天算一歲,而地獄不算歲,它算轉胎,轉胎就是轉報。如果他第一報就要過油鍋報,這可不是你們家廚房的油鍋,地獄的油鍋就像海一樣,人道出生後轉到地獄去,地獄出生就在油鍋中,這個油鍋在他們看來是海,因為轉胎轉到地獄他並不知道,他也會遊來遊去像一條魚,後來越來越大,受地獄報的人無樂可言,只要有樂的念頭就完了,若是在人道,還有一點樂沒有關係,因為我們還有修報,有修報可以享受安樂,但是三惡道不能享樂,一享樂就是果報,人道的果報是可享受的,若是鬼道、地獄道則不能。所以當他們以為是三溫暖洗澡,又起心動念,結果這些熱水變成熱油他還不知道,當下燒燙得體無完膚,五臟六腑焦爛而亡,但是當一陣陰風吹來,又投生到劍山地獄了。

大家看道家的十殿閻羅圖,他畫鬼卒拿叉叉犯人,其實不是這樣,那是變像圖。道士畫出來的這些圖,雖然有將道理、果報畫出來,但是不完全,事相不是這樣。地獄是自然轉報,跟人一樣是自然轉報。前面我們說他又轉生到劍山地獄,剛開始時就是一條蟲,起初這個山的草像韓國草一樣柔軟,當蟲慢慢長大開始想享受時,慘了,這些草也慢慢長大,你起心動念,草就變成劍,貫穿你的身體,剎時肚腸外流,血流滿地,痛苦哀嚎,當一陣陰風吹來你又轉報了,轉到夾山地獄。在一個山谷中覺得環境優美得像溪頭、阿里山,這一起心動念,又有享受快樂的慾感,這時,山就慢慢往中間夾靠擠壓過來,將你夾得全身碎爛似如三明治中的肉醬。

故鬼道跟地獄道無樂可享,只擁有受報又不會死,這就叫業報。除非在世修行守戒,精進念佛,行善至孝,不然都會往三惡道去的。

One should know the characteristics of space. All those who do not know emptiness claim non-existence is existence. The perverted regard a mirage as water. Ignorance about the truth is the cause of samsara. Cittamatrins and heretics like the Sankhyas and the rest maintain that upaya and prajna are separate. Each has his own theory. This is the same as maintaining that a dead tree has flowers.

— Marpa

Reflections on the Path of Dharma
by The Ninth Khamtrul Rinpoche, Jigme Pema Nyinjadh

In this modern day and age, we have made great progress in technology and standard of living, though I do not unwelcome it. Nor do I think that standard of living or should I say the search of happiness outside of our self should be the main goal of our life. I have heard people say that “we should learn from history so that we do not repeat our mistakes”.

I feel that we should also learn from the life of those, whom we consider to be the epitome of success and happiness. Whether they are Hollywood superstars or leaders of powerful nations….. How happy are they? Are they free from all the problems in life? Can they raise their powerful hands and avoid unhappiness from coming to them and others?

Are they happier than us? Rich people seem to have almost all the problems that we ordinary have, plus some extra ones too. Yet poor or should I say middle-class people too can’t claim to be really happy, just because we are middle class or poor. Though we have our privacy and perceived freedom, which usually the rich and famous lack. While we might wish to be famous and recognised wherever we go, the famous usually seems to prefer privacy in their life.

It is said that the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, so if happiness doesn’t automatically come with wealth and power, how can we obtain it? Buddha taught that of all the wealth in the world “contentment” is the best of all wealth. Likewise, the famous Indian Buddhist master Nagarjuna said that ‘suffering for the accumulation of wealth, the worry of protecting it, the despair of losing it consumes those with strong attachment to wealth’. Therefore these people can never be free from suffering.

From these teachings, we can come to a conclusion that whether you are rich or relatively poor, you can be happy if you are content. Since both contentment, and discontentment, (which arises from attachment) comes from our mind, it is evident that the happiness and suffering has very much to do with our mind.

When we are happy, everything looks beautiful and nice, yet when we are gripped by negative emotions such as anger or despair the same thing appears to look unattractive and unpleasant. His Holiness the Gyalwang Drukpa said in “My Crazy Tale” that pleasure and pains are created by attraction and aversion. For example in the hot plains of India during the monsoon when it rains people go out and dance with joy while in the hills of Darjeeling, where it rains quite consistently we say, will this rain never stop?

Since the mind is the main source or cause of happiness and suffering, we should look inside ourselves for solutions to our life. As the great Indian master, Shantideva said, complaining that one is getting pricked by thrones while walking barefooted and trying to cover the earth with leather is not the realistic solution but if one covers one’s own feet with leather it is same as covering the entire earth!

Likewise, instead of covering the earth and sky, if one is content, that is it! You are happy! Isn’t that the ultimate aim? Instead of trying to destroy all your enemies, isn’t it better to destroy the anger inside us? Instead of trying to be number one in the world, if one is mentally humble, isn’t that a better and more realistic way to be happy? What does it matter to you how much you are respected or not? The reason I say mentally humble is sometimes we can be humble by circumstance or just externally, which is not truly humble. It is again the mind or the mental attitude that is important.

In Tibetan language, the terminology for Buddhist is “Nangpa” which means someone who looks within themselves for the answers to external problems. Buddha taught that the main cause of the suffering is ‘ignorance’. However ignorance has quite a broad range of meaning, one can understand that in essence, it means not realising the unfabricated nature of the mind which is the primordial and non-dualistic wisdom.

Never looking inward for an existence of self or ego but by the habit of countless past life or experience we have the strong grasping attitude to what we call “I ” and “others”, “me” and “mine”, “my like and dislike”. From these arises the attachment, anger, pride, jealousy, etc. These compel us to diverse karma or actions, which results in diverse reactions or results. Be it external flora and fauna of the world, or the different and diverse experience of the sentient beings.

Though we the unenlightened can’t clearly define all the diverse effects of different Karmas and to understand subtle things such as non-dual nature of the mind, even philosophically it might take a lot of studies and deep reflections. Nevertheless, it is relatively easy to understand the negative impacts or unhappiness, the negative mind or emotions such as anger, grasping attachment, pride, etc can bring in our life. These emotions immensely influence our life and drive our life that they seem to enslave us completely.

That is why in the chapter of forbearance, in the practices of the heart sons of Buddha, by Shantideva, It is said that ”the beings controlled by the negative emotions often hurt even their own cherished self” (suicide and self-inflicted pains). so we should try to understand and forebear the pain they cause us, as they are totally controlled and helpless by these negative emotions.

So from the five poison and its consequences, we take refuge in Buddha, the compassionate and enlightened one, therefore free from the five poisons and consequently free from the suffering. Dharma or the path which He Himself took, and practised to enlighten Himself.

Sangha, the spiritual community to support us on our path to enlightenment or Nirvana. (A lasting or true happiness, which comes from realising the wisdom within us or the true state of things as they are). Since a mind of a qualified teacher can be the “Buddha”, his teachings the “Dharma” and his support the “Sangha”.

In Vajrayana, the teacher is understood as Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. This is the very basic understanding of three refuges. It is said that depending on your own realisation, three refuges will have a broader and all encompassing meaning as you progress in your development of wisdom. Buddha’s teaching is referred to as a universal truth, as His realisation is the truth applicable to all phenomena. Therefore, the word “truth” is often used, such as four noble truths, relative and ultimate truth.

Since enlightenment is referred as Buddha, the path is referred as Buddha’s Dharma. For example, Newton discovered the law of gravity, so it is referred as Newton’s law. However, that doesn’t mean that there was no gravity before he discovered it, or there won’t be gravity after the discovery. Similarly, Buddha too discovered or realised the truth which has always been there primordially.

Since truth is no one’s property and truth is applicable to all, whether we call ourself Buddhist or not, anyone is welcome to His teaching of ‘path to happiness or enlightenment’. Regardless of whether we call our self-spiritual or materialistic, all sentient beings do desire happiness and wish to avoid unhappiness. Generally speaking, won’t we enjoy our material wealth more, with less grasping or attachment?

Usually when we own something precious, don’t we spend more time worrying about it than enjoying it? Won’t we be a better person, a better friend, better husband, wife, or generally a happier person if we can at least minimise our anger, our pride, our grasping attachment which leads to selfishness, or jealousy? If one is able to minimise these things then, one is really practicing.

In essence, that is all Dharma is all about. When we do things which look very nice and holy yet done with negative motivation and thoughts you are not practicing Dharma but samsara. (Samsara means the ceaseless cyclic activities without essence due to the influence of ignorance and other negative emotions). So I feel that practicing Dharma in its essence will enable us to enjoy life more, with more relaxed and unbiased attitude to ups and downs of life.

Being a practitioner doesn’t necessarily mean leaving your job, family, and going to the caves, rather it means that through means of different practices you improve your mind slowly. Devoting even a short period of time from our busy schedule of modern day life to develop our mind can have great and positive effects in our life. Therefore, I sincerely pray that we all remember the great need for Dharma in our life, and practice it.

Especially when we are so fortunate to have an Enlightened, Compassionate, and qualified master such as His Holiness the 12th Gyalwang Drukpa. These are some reflections of mind that I just jotted down. They are not teachings for I am just a beginner to dharma and lack either wisdom or knowledge. Yet if there is anything in my reflections which are of benefit to others, then they are due to the kindness of my enlightened teachers such as His Holiness the12th Gyalwang Drukpa and others.

Toward those with suffering, meditate on love and compassion; toward those with peace and happiness, rejoice. Think of nothing else, but pray to the lama; look at your mind, and maintain clear awareness, mind’s true nature.

— His Holiness Trulshik Rinpoche, Ngawang Chokyi Lodro

为何我们修行了这么久 却一点进步都没有
智敏上师

我们学法的目的是闻思修的过程,法听过以后,心中应有所触动,不光是听闻了算数。我们学的就是修的,有多少的闻慧,便有多少的思慧,有多少的思慧,才有多少的修慧。而要广大听闻,又必须积资净障资粮聚集好了,方能听闻获得利益。

而普遍存在着一种思想:学法只重表面,加行不愿修,殿也不肯上,就是拿着本书要听经、听磁带、要自己研究。如此是否真正能得解脱利益?末法时期,要广大听闻,表面上看是在努力,而这个还需要资粮的积聚方能收效,正好《福智之声》第83期,谈到广大听闻与净罪集资,没有集资净障的前提,你虽广大听闻,却听不进去的,有时还会毁谤。

如果你广大听闻而不清楚,这时候赶快去广大积集资粮,再去听闻,就会听得更清楚,更深刻地了解。我们中间,有些人学法,皮面上了解一点,深刻的不谈了,即使皮面上的了解,也是根据自己主观的理解。到底对不对,还不敢说,这就不够了。没有广大的集资净障,不管你学得那么多,都不会有真正修持的进步,犹如种花,需要阳光、空气、土壤、水分等缘,不管缺了哪一方面,都不会开出理想的花朵。

如何集资?礼拜、绕塔、布施、供养、持咒等等,这些都是积聚资粮的方式,而要净罪则是通过“四力门”以此忏悔过现罪业。这些不做到,光靠听经是不会去除五欲的。又在此中,如礼拜等,不但能净障,甚至能开智慧,如五台山某法师拜《华严经》,到最后,不但罪障消除,智慧也开了。所以一个法有多种作用。《四加行》里的法,集资净障都安排好了,而我们有的人来了很长时间,连“四皈依”都不修,结果便是信心不坚固,在这里修不起,便跑回去,回去后又感不适应,又再来,来了又不修,跑来跑去,最后什么也未学到。所以我们学了法,要时常用法去观察,俾在事上起用,不要在文字上纠缠。

在广大听闻中,若过去造有许多恶业,当此业障来上,不管你怎么学,也抵不住。虽然你很用功,很努力,但是罪未忏净,便不会有什么进步,甚至于退道,业障来时,则会使你害病,或者出魔障,甚至还有生命的危险。如过去传说中,经常听到某些人,念书多年,去京城赶考,在其考试房间里,若过去有怨业,便会出魔障,以前的冤鬼找上,使他考不上,甚至命也送掉。

在佛教里,这种情况也很多,尤其在受三坛大戒。最现实的,我们这里的宗归师,他在五台山受戒时,出障,他有一天眼睛一幌,见一人来,此人是他以前针灸治病扎瞎了眼的,见后,两眼就开始发炎,继而两眼红肿如球,最后渐成两块蛋白似的,如果在登坛前内不治好,便不能受戒,幸亏他通过佛前忏悔求加持,又有几位师父的帮助,去台山针灸,才化险为夷。在大型传戒法会中,几乎每次授戒,都会出障。有些人明天就要登坛,而今天便死掉了。这些都是以前的业现起,障碍他们趋向清净解脱。

所以要忏除身口的恶业,便是要集资净障。而侍候上师,为上师执事,则是净除罪障最好的方法,这其中身口意都包括了。如所举之仲登巴,因为承事上师,使他成为阿底峡尊者弟子中成就最大的一个。

You might remain in a solitary place, physically isolated from the world, yet fail to let go of ordinary concerns, and, with attachment and aversion, seek to bring defeat upon your enemies while furthering the interests of your friends, and involve yourself in all kinds of projects and financial dealings but there could hardly be anything worse than that at all. If you lack the wealth of contentment in your mind, you’ll think you need all kinds of useless things, and end up even worse than just an ordinary person, because you won’t manage even a single session of practice. So set your mind on freedom from the need for anything at all. Wealth, success and status are all simply ways of attracting enemies and demons. Pleasure-seeking practitioners who fail to turn their minds from this life’s concerns sever their connection to the authentic Dharma. So take care to avoid becoming stubbornly immune to the teachings.

— Chatral Rinpoche

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