Showing posts with label Meditation. Show all posts
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translate this. remember to use the proper buddhist terminologies, for example for the 四相“我相,人相,众生相,寿者相”:

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坐禅要领(一) -洪文亮老师开示

(Essentials of Zazen (Part One) - Teachings by Master Hong Wen Liang)


(2009-11-09 12:29:23)

(November 9, 2009, 12:29:23)


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分类: 洪文亮老师

(Category: Master Hong Wen Liang)


149 (转自正法眼藏论坛:http://www.hongzen.com)

(149 (Reposted from Zheng Fa Yan Zang Forum: http://www.hongzen.com))


录自2004年五月禅修 zhengdapang整理

(Recorded from the May 2004 meditation retreat, organized by Zhengdapang)


打坐的要领

(The Key Points of Sitting in Meditation)


打坐,是你最好的老师。

(Meditation is your best teacher.)


**你身体这样一摆,脊椎没有前俯后仰,稳稳地坐在蒲团上。呼

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I apologize for the confusion earlier. Let me provide a more consolidated translation, covering several paragraphs at once for comparison.


坐禅要领(一) -洪文亮老师开示

(Essentials of Zazen (Part One) - Teachings by Master Hong Wen Liang)


录自2004年五月禅修 zhengdapang整理

(Recorded from the May 2004 meditation retreat, organized by Zhengdapang)


打坐的要领

(The Key Points of Sitting in Meditation)


打坐,是你最好的老师。你身体这样一摆,脊椎没有前俯后仰,稳稳地坐在蒲团上。呼吸,随它长,随它短。需要长的时候它自己长,不需要那么长的时候,它自己短。所以说,呼吸长,呼吸短。《阿含经》里讲的安那般那,其实大家有些地方误会了。它说,呼吸长,知呼吸长,知道的“知”。你的呼吸短,就知道你的呼吸短。那个“知”不是你起一个认识去知,“哎,我这一次呼吸长,我这一次呼吸短。”不是那样的“知”。叫你呼吸长呼吸短,知道长知道短,你不是变成一个石头人,木头人,什么都不知道,死人一样,不是这个意思。但是,也不是起个念,“哎,我这一次呼吸长了,哦,这一次呼吸短了。”

(Sitting in meditation is your best teacher. Position your body such that your spine is neither leaning forward nor backward, sitting steadily on the cushion. Let your breath be long or short as it naturally occurs. When it needs to be long, it extends; when it doesn't, it shortens. Thus, the breath can be long or short. The Ānāpānasati, as mentioned in the Āgama Sūtras, is often misunderstood. It teaches that when the breath is long, be aware that it is long, and when it is short, be aware that it is short. This awareness is not about consciously thinking, 'Ah, this breath is long, this one is short.' It's not that kind of awareness. It means being aware of the length of your breath without turning into a stone or wooden person, unaware and lifeless. But, it's also not about generating the thought, 'Now my breath is long, now it is short.')


身,口,意三个样子。身的样子,脊椎的姿式最重要。不是用力,不是弯腰驼背,也不是抻直起来,都不是,意加进去的都不是。口闭起来。闭起来可以念咒吗?还念佛号吗?可以吗?口闭起来,轻轻地闭起来。意,很多人就是误会在这里。哎呦,教你观心喽,观你的心从哪里来,心停在哪里。又是跑去了,跑到哪里去了。什么观心哪!释迦牟尼佛教的“身口意”三个方面的指导不是这样教的。他的意思,身口意的“意”,是教你这样静坐,坐禅,心念来了心念去,你不要欢迎它,也不要去排斥它。不迎不拒,不理它,有一个“不理”在那里,已经不对了。有一个“不理”这个念头,那就已经起个念头去“不理”了嘛!所以,真正的让你的心念来去自由,念头上来念头去。但是,不是死掉,也不是昏沉过去了。

(There are three aspects in meditation: body, speech, and mind. For the body, the posture of the spine is most crucial. It's not about exerting force, slouching, or stretching too hard. None of these involve adding intention. The mouth should be closed, but what about chanting or reciting Buddha's name? Can it be done with a closed mouth? Lightly close the mouth. Many people misunderstand the aspect of the mind. It's not about observing the mind to see where it comes from or where it goes. This isn't the 'observation of the mind' as taught by Shakyamuni Buddha. His teaching on the aspects of body, speech, and mind is about sitting quietly in meditation, letting thoughts come and go without welcoming or rejecting them. Not welcoming or rejecting, not engaging with them. To have the thought of 'not engaging' is already a mistake. Allow your thoughts to come and go freely. But it's not about being dead or dull.)


怀奘不是说吗,“众生的本有,万法的全体”。心念是不是万法之一呀?就好像眼睛照到有相,眼睛就有相现。耳朵听到有声音,耳朵就有响。意根由法尘现,就有法相。念头来去是万法之一呀!万法的全身哪,全体的身,全身,那是你自己的光明藏啊!念头的来,念头本身是你的光明藏的作用,你的光明本身,你怎么知道有念头来去呀?还要在那里起个念头去观,不是矛盾吗?还有的人是,“哦,我知道有念头来了。好,不迎,不要去欢迎它,不要随它,也不要去排斥它。”以为不迎不拒是做意根的、身口意方面的“意”方面的用功,错掉了!

(Huizang said, 'The originally so [buddha nature] of all beings is the total body of the ten thousand Dharmas.' Aren't thoughts part of the myriad Dharmas? Just as the eye perceives forms, the ear hears sounds, and the mind-root is manifested through Dharma-dust, thus creating Dharma-forms. Thoughts are among the myriad Dharmas. The entire body of the ten thousand dharmas, that is your luminous storehouse! The arising of thoughts is the function of your luminous storehouse, your brightness itself. How else would you know thoughts come and go? To consciously observe this is a contradiction. Some people think, 'Ah, I notice a thought arising. Good, I will not welcome it, follow it, or reject it.' They believe this non-welcoming and non-rejecting is the function of the mind aspect in body, speech, and mind. This is a mistake!)


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当念头本身的来去,念头本身是你自己的光明的作用,光明的动。光明本身的作用,是你本身,全身,万法的全身嘛!这个时候你起了个念头,“哦,有个念头,不要去碰它”,这个已经是分别意识了。但是,这个念头起以前的那个念头是自然的,是你本来的光明藏,你的光明的本身的作用。这样起的时候,你根本不知道这个(念头),那个(念头),这个时候你根本不知道哦!因为我们习惯性地会生起分别意识,“哎…哦,哦,你这个念头…”在这个以前的,所以叫做“父母未生前”,还没有预兆以前。所以,因为你的意识知道念头来了,这个刹那之间,你前面那个“未生前”的那个就,你就“哦!原来是这样!”识的境界跟“父母未生前”,连念头都不知道念头的时候,光是念头,是你的光明在动的时候,这个一刹那,这个时候开悟的人也有,但太少太少,这比有光出现看到东西,或听到了声音而把你的我执打断还不容易,很少很稀有。大概是过去宿世因缘,过去已经相当成就,生下来就有这本事。否则的话,这个……念头本身是你的光明的作用,跟你去认到这个念头不同哎!体会的出吗?了解吗?光是了解没有用,所以要打坐!所以要打坐!!!


(When thoughts come and go, they are the activity of your own luminous nature, the movement of the light itself. This activity of luminosity itself is your entire being, the totality of all Dharmas. When you have a thought like 'Ah, there's a thought, don't touch it,' it's already a discriminating consciousness. But the thought before this, the natural one, is your original luminous storehouse, it is the function of your luminosity itself. At that moment, you're not aware of this or that thought. Because we habitually generate discriminating consciousness, we think, 'Ah, this thought...' Before this occurs, it is called 'before your parents were born,' before any signs. So, when your consciousness knows a thought has come, in that instant, the moment 'before birth,' you realize, 'Ah, this is it!' The realm of consciousness and the time 'before your parents were born,' when you're not even aware of thoughts, just the thought itself, is your light in motion. At this moment, some may attain enlightenment, but it's exceedingly rare. It's harder than having a light appear and seeing things or hearing a sound and breaking your attachment to self. This is likely due to past life causes and conditions, already having significant achievements. Otherwise, this thought itself is the function of your light, different from recognizing this thought. Can you feel it? Do you understand? Merely understanding is not enough; therefore, you must practice sitting meditation! You must sit!)


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密在汝边

(The Secret is Near You)


念佛号表示尊敬,表示希

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密在汝边

(The Secret is Near You)


念佛号表示尊敬,表示希望,表示期望,将来能够到净土,到佛菩萨旁边。对他尊敬是好,但是,这个不都是你的“识”的境界吗?现在声音在响,念佛号还是念别的什么的,声音在那边呢还是在你这边?如果声音在那边,你这里听不到吗?如果声音是在这里呢?跟他们又不相干哪!你这里生起就好!也不能说那边也不能说这边生起。但是有啊!这个叫“无生之生”,“没有而有”。这是用道理讲的。本来不用道理嘛!你现在是用耳朵,你问耳朵,就是这样啊!“无生而生”就是这样,还讲道理吗?象那个声音不是“无生而生”吗?谁生了它?你去想就不是在打坐。那边响,就有声音在耳边响。那边念的人是他的光明在动,这边你听了是你的光明在这里动,就这样子。这是方便讲“你”的光明“他”的光明,其实是本身,光明,光明藏,法界本身的动。


(Reciting the Buddha's name signifies respect, hope, and the aspiration to reach the Pure Land and be by the side of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Respecting them is good, but isn't this just the realm of your 'consciousness'? Now, when a sound is made, whether reciting the Buddha's name or something else, is the sound over there or here with you? If the sound is over there, can't you hear it here? If the sound is here, then it's unrelated to them over there! It arises here with you! It's neither solely there nor here. But it exists! This is called 'unborn yet born,' 'non-existent yet present.' This is an explanation using logic, but originally, it doesn't need logic. You are using your ears, ask your ears, it's just like that! 'Unborn yet born' is exactly this, why bring logic into it? Isn't that sound 'unborn yet born'? Who gave birth to it? If you think about it, you're not meditating. The sound over there creates sound at your ears. The one reciting over there is their light in motion, and you hearing it here is your light in motion here. It's like this. This is a convenient way to speak of 'your' light and 'their' light, but in reality, it's just light, the luminous storehouse, the motion of the Dharmadhatu (dharma realm) itself.)


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所以有人问六祖,佛法最秘密的在哪里,告诉我。最宝贵的,最神秘的要旨,请六祖告诉我。六祖怎么说,大家都知道。他说“密在你那边”。秘密在你那边!很多人都把这个话简单地解释过去了。他说“秘密啊,真正的秘密不在我这里,也不在别人手里,所有秘密都在你那边”。听懂了吗?这样有什么用啊!等于没有讲。“密在你那边”,六祖的意思,真义是什么意思知道吗?各位!


(Thus, someone asked the Sixth Patriarch, 'Where is the most secret part of the Buddha's teaching? Tell me.' The most precious and mysterious essence, they requested the Sixth Patriarch to reveal. What the Sixth Patriarch said is well known. He said, 'The secret lies within you.' The secret is within you! Many have oversimplified this statement. He meant, 'The true secret isn't with me, nor is it in the hands of others; all secrets lie within you.' Do you understand? What use is this explanation? It's as if he said nothing. 'The secret lies within you' – do you know what the Sixth Patriarch truly meant by this?)


现在是不是听到声音,远处传来念经的声音。这个声音谁造出来的?在什么地方造出来的?工厂在哪里?你怎么能会听呢?都不知道!能听的力量从哪里发出来的?不知道,但是在听啊!所以这个叫做“不知”的,也就是我们自己不知道不上我们意识的东西和我们最亲不过,最亲密——亲密的“密”,这个不是秘密的“秘”——当然也是秘密了。其实是最亲密的意思。跟


(Now, are you hearing a sound, the sound of sutras being chanted in the distance? Who created this sound? Where did it come from? Where is the factory that produced it? How can you hear it? We don't know! Where does the power to hear come from? Unknown, but you are hearing! Thus, this is called 'the unknown' – that which we ourselves don't know and doesn't arise in our consciousness. It is the closest and most intimate to us – intimate 'mi', not secret 'mi' – though it is also a secret. It actually means the most intimate. With)


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跟你最亲密,那是你的实相。不知最亲密,所以“密”在你那边。听,看,感觉,知道,怎么能知道?你动了哪个地方才能知道?佛也不知道。不知最亲,最真实。所以说,“密”在你那边,六祖的意思是这样。


(The most intimate aspect is your true nature. The deepest intimacy lies in the unknown, thus 'the secret is within you'. Listening, seeing, feeling, knowing – how can you know? What do you move to know? Even the Buddha doesn't know. The closest and most real is the unknown. Therefore, 'the secret lies within you', and this is what the Sixth Patriarch meant.)


盘腿盘久了会痛会酸麻,这个酸麻从哪里生起?不知耶。不知,但是会酸会麻耶,会受不了。把腿放开了也就好了,痛没有了,麻也没有了。这个“痛”怎么除掉的你知道吗?你怎么把这个痛麻除掉?你也不知道!“不知”最亲,最密,是我们的实在的样子。我们每一刻都是真实的活着,没有一点虚假,没有一点幻。是自己想歪了,那才是问题。其实我们都是“真实”。


(Sitting cross-legged for a long time leads to pain and numbness. Where does this pain and numbness originate from? We don't know. Unknown, yet there is pain and numbness, unbearable at times. Releasing the legs alleviates it, the pain and numbness disappear. Do you know how this pain is eliminated? How do you remove this pain and numbness? You don't know! The closest and most intimate is the 'unknown', our true form. Every moment we live is real, without any falsehood or illusion. The problem arises from our distorted thinking. In reality, we are 'true'.)


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《金刚经》里的四相

(The Four Marks in the Diamond Sutra)


好,最后讲一点,大家最熟悉的《金刚经》。高雄来的朋友也许听过,你复习一下。《金刚经》说,大家记得的一句话,很重要,是什么,“我相,人相,众生相,寿者相”。《金刚经》说这四个相是我们想错出来的相,是我们的错觉的样子,错的太离谱了。《金刚经》里头提出来,严重的错误的样子大概有四种:一个是没有“我”,你偏偏要认为有“我”,“我相”。有了“我相”之后呢,自然不是“我”就是“你”了嘛!“人相”。因为先有我相啊!那,不是我的,就是对方,对方是“人相”。“我相”“人相”出来了。“众生相”呢?很多人说,I是“我相”,you是“人相”,“众生相”是they。这只是一种说法了,不究竟。“我相”可以说是主subject,“人相”呢?object 客。“主、客”,“能、所”。知道吗?有了“能”,一定有下面的“所”。有了“主”,就有相对的“客”。“能、所”,“主、客”,“我、人”,这都是“我相、人相”的代号了,都是一样的意思,subject and object。


(Alright, let's talk a bit about the well-known Diamond Sutra. Friends from Kaohsiung might have heard this, let's review. The Diamond Sutra mentions an important phrase, 'the marks of self, person, beings, and life-span'. The Sutra says these four marks are misconceptions we fabricate, far from the truth. The Diamond Sutra outlines these grave errors: the first is the 'mark of self' – where there is no 'self', we insist on perceiving one. Once the 'mark of self' arises, naturally, it's either 'me' or 'you', the 'mark of person'. Because the 'mark of self' exists first, anything not mine becomes the other, the 'mark of person'. 'Marks of self' and 'person' emerge. What about 'mark of beings'? Many say 'I' is the 'mark of self', 'you' is the 'mark of person', and 'they' are the 'mark of beings'. This is just one interpretation, not the ultimate truth. 'Mark of self' can be considered the subject, and 'mark of person'? The object. 'Host/agent and guest', 'subject and object'. Do you understand? With 'agent', there must be a 'object of action'. With 'subject', there is the corresponding 'object'. 'Agent and object of action', 'subject and object', 'self and person', all these represent the 'marks of self and person', with the same meaning.)


那么“众生相”是什么?比方说,我这里“啪”(师用力击掌),有没有声音,各位?有了。在各位耳边都响起来,有一个我拍手的声音。我请问各位,声音本身,这个声音哪,sound也可以,我发出的voice也可以。这个上头有没有“能所”?你听到的声音,这个声音上有没有“能”跟“所”在里面?你听到的声音哪,而且是被你听到的声音,才叫做声音是不是?只是你能听的不能称其为声吧,没有“所”的声,哪有这样的声音!但是,光是被你听到的声音,“所”,有了“所”,你没有能听的“能”,你怎么听到的。所以声音本身呢,本来就是声音而已,没有“能、所”之分对不对!哪有“能、所”之分,在哪里分呀?在哪里mix?声音本身没有办法分“能、所”,对不对,我有没有骗你?你告诉我,你听到的声音里有“你能听的”跟“被你听到的”我的声音在哪里碰头,在哪里交汇,在哪里混合,分得出来吗?可是光是能听不成其声,光是所听那你听到了什么?没有能所。但声音就是这样哦、呜、哎、啊、咿……那么明显,这声音上头没有能所。这个you can prove by yourself。这是很明历历的事嘛!声音是没有能所的,没有能所的是不属于我相人相哦!那么,我们把它叫做什么?这个才叫做“众生相”。声音如是,色相是不是?你看到的相,相上有没有“你能看到的”跟“被你看到的”?混在什么地方?相就是相。没有办法分成你能看的“能”跟被你看到的“相”在哪里交汇,才变成一个相。有没有?没有。不能分能所,能看所看不能分,跟能听所听不能分一样。


(What then is the 'mark of beings'? For instance, when I clap my hands (the teacher claps forcefully), is there a sound, everyone? There is. The sound of my clap resounds in everyone's ears. I ask you all, the sound itself – this sound, whether it's a sound or my voice – does it have 'agent and object of action'? The sound you hear, does this sound have 'agent' and 'object of action' in it? The sound you hear, and moreover, the sound heard by you, is only then called a sound, isn't it? A sound that can only be heard cannot be called a sound without a 'object of action', there's no such sound! But the sound that is just heard, the 'object of action', once there is a 'object of action', and if there is no 'subject' that can hear, how would you have heard? So, the sound itself is just sound, without division into 'agent and object of action/subject and object', right? Where is the division of 'agent and object of action/subject and object'? Where do they mix? The sound itself cannot be divided into 'agent and object of action/subject and object', right, have I deceived you? Tell me, in the sound you hear, where do 'your ability to hear (hearer)' and 'my voice heard by you' meet, intersect, or blend? Can you distinguish them? But just the ability to hear (hearer) does not make the sound, nor does just the heard – what then have you heard? There's no agent or object of action. But the sound is just like this – oh, woo, ah, ee... so obvious, this sound has no agent or object of action. You can prove this by yourself. This is quite a clear matter! Sound has no agent or object of action, and without agent or object of action, it does not belong to the 'marks of self or person'! "So, what do we call it? This is what is called the 'mark of beings'. Is it the same with visual forms? In the forms you see, is there 'what you can see' and 'what is seen by you'? Where do they mix? A form is just a form. It's impossible to divide into 'the ability to see (seer)' and 'the form that is seen' to find where they converge to become one form. Is there such a (point of) division? No, there isn't. It's impossible to divide between the subject and object, just as it's impossible to divide between the ability to hear (hearer) and the heard."

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所以呢,相就是相,没有能所,所以叫众生相。不是我相,不是人相,所以叫众生相。所以声音也是众生相,色相也是众生相。痛啊、麻啊也是众生相,舒服啊那个“觉”也是众生相。“知道啊”,你知道什么?你说知道这个、那个,知道的那个内容。能知的跟被你所知的两个没有碰在一起,你知道什么东西呀?所以连“知”也是没有能所。色声香味触法,色是色,声是声音,香味是香,味道是味。色声香味触法各个不同哎!但是,不同的这些色声香味触法各个没有能所,找不出能所。但是有那么多“众生”,很多啊,色、声、香、味、触、法,各个不同——众生相。


(Thus, a phenomenon is just as it is, without the division of 'agent and object of action', which is why it's called the 'mark of beings'. It's neither the 'mark of self' nor the 'mark of person', but the 'mark of beings'. Therefore, sounds are also the 'mark of beings', visual forms are the 'mark of beings'. Pain, numbness, comfort, and sensations are also the 'mark of beings'. 'Knowing', what do you know? You talk about knowing this and that, the content of what is known. The 'known' and 'knower' don't come into contact with each other, so what do you really know? Thus, even 'knowing' lacks 'agent and object of action/subject and object'. In the realms of form, sound, scent, taste, touch, and Dharma, form is form, sound is sound, scent is scent, taste is taste. The realms of form, sound, scent, taste, touch, and Dharma are all different! But these different realms of form, sound, scent, taste, touch, and Dharma lack 'agent and object of action', and one cannot find 'agent and object of action' in them. Yet, there are so many 'beings', so many, form, sound, scent, taste, touch, and Dharma, each different — the 'mark of beings'.)


好了,最后他讲什么?寿者相。嗨呀,我们这修修修的,声音没有能所,色相没有能所,我们误会有个我去看到这个色相,啊,那是根本的错误!但是奇怪,色是色啊,声音是声音啊,触觉是触觉啊,思想是思想啊,虽然没有能所,各个独立存在,所以众生相。对不对?好了,于是认为色相有色相的本体,有一个体,现出这个色相。我们总是认为它是从某一个…它一定有出生点、制造厂、工厂制造出来的,一定要有个原点、出生点。知道吗?一定要有出生点我们才心服。这个“一定要有个出生点”,一定由这个东西里生出来的迷知、妄想,这个叫什么?寿者相!这个东西不好处理。你知道色声香味触法都是没有能所的,但是它各个都好象真的有。到了这个时候,那修道的人,你慢慢能清楚到了这里,有的人莫名其妙的念头,越来越少、越来越淡。但是呢,还挂在这里,执著每一样存在都是真的存在,有它的来点,有它的出生点——这就是法执!所谓佛见、法见都是这个寿者相。这个寿者相怎么断?凭你聪明的大头脑,一千万个爱因斯坦的头脑都断不了。想不通的。什么方法能断?请你的两只腿跟你的腰部、臀部靠坐垫,好好稳稳地坐--下--去。不要去卖弄你的聪明,卖弄你的思想,卖弄你的感情,那感情更不用说了!这样你才能知道,原来这个寿者相都是假的啊!一定要一个出生点吗?所有生出来的东西一定要有体吗?


(Alright, what does he finally speak of? The 'mark of life-span'. Oh, in our practice, there is no 'agent and object of action/subject and object' in sound or visual form. We mistakenly think there is a self that sees these forms, ah, this is a fundamental error! But strangely, form is form, sound is sound, touch is touch, thought is thought. Although lacking 'agent and object of action', each exists independently, thus the 'mark of beings'. Right? So, we assume that forms have their own essence, a substance that manifests these forms. We always think they must have an origin point, a manufacturing factory, a place where they are produced, a starting point. Do you know? We are convinced only when there is a starting point. This 'must-have-a-starting-point' is delusion and misconception born from within, what is it called? The 'mark of life-span'! This is hard to deal with. You know that form, sound, scent, taste, touch, and Dharma lack 'agent and object of action/subject and object', but they all seem to truly exist. At this point, the practitioner gradually becomes clear, and those inexplicable thoughts become fewer and lighter. But still, there lingers an attachment to every existence as being real, having its origin point — this is attachment to Dharma! What are known as 'Buddha view' and 'Dharma view' are this 'mark of life-span'. How to break free from this 'mark of life-span'? Not even a million Einsteins could figure it out. What method can break it? Invite your legs and your waist and buttocks to rest on the cushion and sit steadily. Don't show off your intelligence, your thoughts, your emotions — let's not even talk about emotions! Only then can you realize that this 'mark of life-span' is false! Must there be an origin point? Must everything born have a substance?)


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所以禅宗祖师常常叫你参,参什么?“父母未生前”。我们都认为是爸爸妈妈生我的,没有爸爸妈妈就没有我,一般的人都这样讲。那他就问,既然你认为爸爸妈妈没有的话,我就不存在,我就没有,一般都是这样,这样正确啊。好了,你爸爸妈妈还没有出生,还没有投胎以前,爸爸还没有出生,妈妈还没有出生,这个时候,你在哪里?你在哪里!怎么想,你怎么去想这个问题?怎么想也想不通的。但是奇怪,那你从哪里来?明明是爸爸妈妈的关系我才有啊!那爸爸妈妈还没出生以前我躲在哪里呀?天涯海角去找,“上穷碧落下黄泉”,到处找,找不到。禅宗祖师爷的问题,答案是什么?知道吗?问你的“只管打坐”。《金刚经》的四相那么清楚,你看看很多解说四相的,唉,文学作品一大堆,但看不到一篇屁股用功出来的作品。唉,头好大!


(Therefore, the Zen masters often tell you to contemplate, 'What was your original face before your parents were born?' We generally think that we exist because of our parents. If there were no parents, there would be no us. That's what most people say. Then the question arises: if you didn't exist before your parents, where were you? Where were you before your parents were born, before they were even conceived? How do you think about this problem? It's baffling. But curiously, where did you come from? Clearly, I exist due to my parents' relationship! So, where was I before my parents were born? Searching to the ends of the earth, 'up to the lofty skies and down to the depths of the earth', searching everywhere, finding nothing. What's the answer to this question posed by the Zen master? Do you know? It asks of your 'just sitting in meditation'. The Four Marks in the Diamond Sutra are so clear, yet look at the many interpretations – a plethora of literary works, but none showing the effort of actual practice from the butt. Oh, such a headache!)


谁在打坐

(Who is Meditating)


大家学佛啊,很喜欢学神奇的、新奇的、很特殊的,很喜欢学这些,很少很少人喜欢去参这个“光明”。光明是你的本体、你的实相,很少人去理会这个。光明时时处处在动,都是你本身的光明在动。不去参这个,去参那个神奇的、奇奇怪怪的、很复杂的、很特殊的。人家不会的我会的,荷呦,时轮金刚呦,灌顶喔,插草喔,观想喔,这个叫做什么?“贪看天上月,失却手中珠”。有一天有人发飙,吃饭的时候,有人讲到这个,他就说,“天上月是假,手中珠也是假,两个都是不存在。”你看,用头脑去读宏智禅师的诗偈,不盘腿,光是用头脑。宏智禅师是慈悲啊,是用这个比方讲的。你自己本身在那里动,你自己就是光明,


(When it comes to learning Buddhism, many are fond of pursuing the mysterious, the novel, and the special. Very few are inclined to contemplate this 'light'. The light is your essence, your true nature, but few pay attention to this. The light is always in motion, everywhere – it's your own light moving. Instead of contemplating this, people chase after the mysterious, the bizarre, the complex, the special. What others can't do, I can; oh, the Wheel of Time, the empowerments, the inserting of grass, the visualizations – what is this called? 'Gazing at the moon in the sky, losing the pearl in hand.' One day, someone got angry during a meal, talking about this. They said, 'The moon in the sky is false, the pearl in hand is also false, both are nonexistent.' Look, using the mind to read the verses of Master Hongzhi, not sitting in meditation, just using the mind. Master Hongzhi is compassionate, using this metaphor. You yourself are moving right there, you yourself are the light, 

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这个比方讲的,他还做文章起来了“月亮不是真的有,手中珠也不是真的有。”那你现在讲的是真讲还是假讲。唉,喜欢用头脑的人就是专门找这个……


(He used this metaphor, yet they argued, 'The moon isn't really there, the pearl in hand isn't really there either.' So, what you're saying now, is it true or false? Alas, those who like to use their heads are especially prone to this...)


我请问各位呀,到底谁在打坐?谁呀?查得出来吗?谁在打坐?有的人会说,《金刚经》说没有我相,所以不敢讲“我”在打坐,所以他一定会说“没有一个我在打坐”。来了一个“没有我”!前面是有个“我”,想想不对,那么回答,“没有我”,没有这样子一个“我”在打坐。“我”也不对,“没有我”也不对,为什么?有个我,没有个我,“有”跟“没有”都是你的想法。同样道理,生和死,有一个生的叫做“生”,没有那个生的就叫“死”。等于是“有生”跟“没有生”,我们叫“生”跟“死”。还不是一样和“有”跟“没有”上头讲道理?那么,到底什么东西在打坐?不能用“我”。“我”也不对,“没有我”也不对,但是在打坐啊!那何物在打坐?什么东西在打坐?怎么办?有些高明一点的禅师,象择木兴道,他有的时候是为了开导说“打坐在打坐”,为了方便才这样讲。因为他是过来人,他怎么讲都对。或者用英文讲the universe is universing ,宇宙在坐宇宙,宇宙在宇宙。有的人听了会更莫名其妙。


(I ask all of you, who is really meditating? Who? Can you find out? Who is meditating? Some might say, 'The Diamond Sutra says there is no self, so I dare not say "I" am meditating,' so they must say 'There is no 'I' meditating.' Here comes the 'no self'! Initially there's an 'I', think about it, that's not right, so the answer is 'no I', there's no such 'I' meditating. 'I' is not right, 'no I' is not right, why? Having an 'I', not having an 'I', 'having' and 'not having' are all your thoughts. Similarly, with life and death, something alive is called 'life', without it, it's called 'death'. It's like 'having life' and 'not having life', which we call 'life' and 'death'. Isn't it the same logic with 'having' and 'not having'? So, what really is meditating? Can't use 'I'. 'I' is not right, 'no I' is not right, but meditation is happening! What thing is meditating? What is meditating? How do you resolve this? Some more enlightened Zen masters, like Zemu Xingdao, sometimes say 'meditation is meditating' for the sake of instruction, for convenience in teaching. Because he is experienced, whatever he says is right. Or in English, 'the universe is universing', the universe is sitting the universe, the universe is the universe. Some people, upon hearing this, might be even more baffled.)


各位一边听一边用功,如果不想听,从左边耳朵到右边耳朵溜过去就是了,不要抓住喽!我不是上佛学课。听了就算了,有点用处你自己知道。那个声音,外面那个叫的汽车声,跟我现在讲佛法,所谓的佛学的道理,等-同-价-值。没有分高低啊!不是我现在讲的才是佛法,外面那个叫的不是佛法,冷气机的这个声音也正在说法。哪有象穿袈裟、威严、上台、宝座,然后讲“诸行无常”这才是佛法。唉,永远也找不到,永远莫名其妙,把佛的真正宝贵的佛法都误解掉了。


(All of you, listen and practice simultaneously. If you don't want to listen, let it pass from one ear to the other without clinging to it! I'm not giving a Buddhist lecture here. Just listen, you will know its usefulness yourself. The sound of that car outside, and what I am speaking now about Buddhism, so-called Buddhist principles, have equal value. There's no distinction of higher or lower. It's not that what I am saying right now is the Dharma, the sound outside is not the Dharma, the sound of the air conditioner is also expounding the Dharma. Where is it said that wearing robes, being solemn, standing on a podium, sitting on a throne, and then speaking about 'all phenomena are impermanent' is the only way to teach the Dharma. Alas, it's forever elusive, forever mysterious, misinterpreting the truly precious teachings of the Buddha.)


大家知道,石头禅师的大弟子,药山大师。有人问他打坐的要领,怎么打坐才对呀?药山简单扼要的说…怎么打坐他怎么讲?药山禅师不是教你,哦,一呼一吸,一吸进去,念阿弥,吐气,念陀佛。吸进,阿弥,吐气,陀佛,那么任脉、督脉那样慢慢转,慢慢转……他才不会教你这种马戏团的戏法。他只告诉学生,怎么说?“思量个不思量的”。嘿,问题来了。思量,就是要想啊!想一个什么东西,他叫我们想打坐的时候的要领,“思量个不思量的”,想那个不想的。既然不想那你叫我怎么去想“那个不想的”呢?所以听不懂。一般的人会觉得很矛盾,你这个药山禅师怎么搞的,一头雾水。药山说,你不懂啊?我再告诉你,怎么打坐,怎么用功——非思量!


(Everyone knows about the great disciple of Master Shitou, Master Yaoshan. Someone asked him about the key to sitting in meditation, how to do it correctly. How did Yaoshan succinctly say it? Master Yaoshan didn't teach you, oh, one inhalation, one exhalation, inhale and recite 'Amitabha', exhale and say 'Buddha'. Inhaling 'Amitabha', exhaling 'Buddha', then the movement of the Ren and Du meridians slowly... He wouldn't teach you such circus tricks. He only told his students, how did he put it? 'Think non-thinking.' Ah, here comes the problem. To contemplate is to think! What to think about, he tells us to think about the key to sitting meditation, 'Contemplate the un-contemplatable,' think about the unthinkable. If it's unthinkable, then how do you ask me to think about 'the unthinkable'? So it's incomprehensible. Ordinary people might find this very contradictory, wondering what this Master Yaoshan is up to, completely baffled. Yaoshan says, you don't understand? Let me tell you again, how to sit in meditation, how to practice — 'non-thinking

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非思量

(Non-thinking)


好了,喜欢在经典里转,没有接触到正法的,那一滴的味道都没有尝过的人马上怎么解释?哎,听过我好像下午介绍过,上午也说过。耳朵听声音,有什么声音响,耳朵就有那种响,狗叫就有狗叫声,汽车的喇叭声,就有汽车的喇叭声,都不要经过你的思量,不用费思量,就是不经过你的思量,自然就响起那种声音。大就大,小就小,高就高,低就低,毫不费力。我们的六根都在这种非思量的状态,它的function,它的作用叫做非思量的那样动。他听过这个道理,但他没有实际听懂,也不常常打坐,喜欢用头脑打坐,屁股垫在头脑上,颠倒。头放在坐垫上,屁股朝上那样打坐。我都笑他们,很多人学佛法,跟佛教导的那个正坐不同啊!佛教导的是稳稳地把屁股坐在坐垫上。我看很多人学佛法都是,头垫在坐垫上,屁股往上翘,上天。这叫颠倒妄想。连坐都颠倒妄想。听过六根的动,不要费一点思量,自然的那样子动,心境一如,有的时候这么讲,那么他们认为非思量就是,“唉呀,原来不管它,六根都是那样动,就那样好了,打坐的时候就是放任六根。反正眼睛、耳朵、鼻子、舌头、身子,还有意根都是在非思量的状态跟境界交换,心境一如的状态在动。”哦!这样打坐,六根放任!好了,坐上去,就拼命在努力,做什么?放任六根。哎,还要你去放任六根啊!谁叫你去放任六根?


"Alright, those who are fond of revolving around the scriptures, who have not come into contact with the true Dharma, who have not even tasted a drop of its essence, how do they immediately explain it? Ah, I seem to have introduced this in the afternoon, and also talked about it in the morning. When the ears hear a sound, whatever the sound is, the ears have that kind of sound. A dog's bark results in the sound of a dog barking, the sound of a car horn results in the sound of a car horn. All these sounds do not require your thinking; no need to expend effort in thinking, they just naturally arise without passing through your thinking. Loud is loud, soft is soft, high is high, low is low, effortlessly. All our six senses operate in this state of non-thinking, their function, their action is called moving in such a non-thinking manner. He heard this principle, but he didn't really understand it, nor did he often sit in meditation, preferring to meditate with his intellect, sitting upside down with the mind on the cushion and the rear in the air. I laugh at them, many who learn Buddhism do not practice sitting as the Buddha taught. The Buddha taught to sit steadily with the buttocks on the cushion. I see many people learning Buddhism with their heads on the cushion, their buttocks upturned, reaching for the sky. This is an inverted delusion. Even sitting becomes an inverted delusion. Having heard about the movement of the six senses, do not expend even a bit of thinking, they move naturally, the mind in such a state, sometimes spoken of in this way. So they think non-thinking means, 'Ah, just leave it, the six senses move like that, so let it be, during meditation just let the six senses be. After all, the eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, and mind all interchange in a state and realm of non-thinking, moving in a state of mind-environment unity/single suchness.' Oh! Such meditation, letting the six senses be! So, sit down, and desperately try, doing what? Letting the six senses be. Ah, but do you need to let the six senses be? Who told you to let the six senses be?"


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哪个叫眼根?哪个叫耳根?还有一个叫耳根、眼根、意根的,都有吗?这些都是真正的具体的有自性的吗?你这还不是在道理上讲吗?(六根)只是方便这样一讲而已。

(Which one is the eye root? Which one is the ear root? Is there also one called the ear root, the eye root, the mind root? Do these really exist concretely, with their own nature? Aren't you still talking in terms of theory? These six roots are just a convenient way to explain.)


句中玄,或者言外意。没有经过真正的、透过这个的、嫡代相传的祖师爷禅师们交待过来、在旁边时常指导你,都会错掉。一上来就是放任六根、放任六根,本来我的六根都是非思量的状态动,所以我就应该这样做。就叫做多此一举,只是你的想法比较高明了一点而已!

(The profundity within the lines, or the meaning beyond the words. Without going through the true, through this, transmitted directly from the ancestral Zen masters who instruct and guide you constantly, everything will be misunderstood. To start with letting go of the six roots, my six roots are naturally moving in a state of non-thinking, so this is what I should do. It's called doing the unnecessary, just a slightly more sophisticated idea of your own!)


药山在这里讲非思量是什么意思呢?他指的不是你的六根放下。有些人就把这个教法跟文殊师利的教法,认为是相同的说法。文殊师利怎么讲?不依身,不依心,不依也不依。有个“不依”在身心上弄还不对,是不依也不依。好像很类似,就这样用功。初修的人还可以啦,刚开始这样进去。可是听过、接触到曹溪一滴的人还一直在这个上头,哎呀,那你就笨透了!文殊师利的意思不是叫你不依,连不依也不依,还有一个你不依的不依嘛!他是这样的意思吗?药山禅师跟你讲“非思量”,也不是描写你的身心的状态,你的存在、你的一切活动、生理的和心理的都是非思量,不是在解说这个事。怎么老是喜欢说明呢?喜欢理解它的道理是干嘛的。你理解跟不理解有什么关系呢?你不理解,肚子饿了也懂的吃,吃了就会饱。反正我们就喜欢去理解,喜欢知道。不知道就好像缺少了什么东西似的。不知道就不满意,一定要知道。实相不由得你知道哎小姐!那么你说实相我不知道!嘿,知道的不对,难道不知道的更对吗?不要闹笑话了!

(What does Yaoshan mean here by 'non-thinking'? He's not referring to letting go of your six roots. Some equate this teaching with Manjushri's teaching. How does Manjushri speak? Not relying on body, not relying on mind, not even relying on 'not relying'. Having 'not relying' on body and mind is still not right; it is not even relying on the 'not relying'. It seems similar, so practice like that. Beginners can start this way. But those who have heard, touched even a drop of the teachings of Caoxi, and still stay on this point, oh, you are profoundly mistaken! The meaning of Manjushri isn't just not relying, but also not relying on 'not relying'. Is that his meaning? Master Yaoshan talking about 'non-thinking' isn't describing the state of your body and mind, your existence, all your activities, physical and mental are non-thinking, he's not explaining this matter. Why always like to explain? Why like to understand its principle? What does understanding or not understanding have to do with it? If you don't understand, when hungry, you still know to eat and will be full. We just like to understand, like to know. Not knowing seems like missing something. Not satisfied without knowing, must know. The reality doesn't depend on your knowing, miss! So you say you don't know reality! Hey, is knowing right, or is not knowing even more right? Don't make a joke of it!)


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其实药山讲的非思量,文殊师利讲的不依也不依,也不是叫你抓住你这个身心,叫你不依身,不依心,也不要起那个不要依念头,他不是这个意思。不依也不依,非思量,统统指的是你的本相、真相。你说它是本地风光、本性、光明藏、三昧都可以。还要你怎么做!吃饭,拿起一双筷子。当你拿起一双筷子的时候,不是非思量在动吗?根本不认得自己的真正的样子是无限的、一个非常超越时空的、无限无量的一个存在。怎么老是拘束在那么一个小小的范围里,讨论非思量啊,不依也不依呢?经典都不晓得读到哪里去了。整个经典就你,真正的你就是经典,不是经典的理论在那里,你去读它,你去了解它。释迦牟尼佛的sutra就是你自己本身实在的样子,真相本身就是sutra。还要你师父上台去解说:如是我闻。谁闻哪!打坐就是这个样子。拿起一双筷子,就已经成佛了,那个就是成佛的样子。那么,盘起腿稳稳的坐,还不是和抓起一双筷子一样!只是你多加了一个妄想,你就自己糟蹋了自己。莫名其妙的要掉进自己妄想的桎梏里头去了。


(In fact, Yaoshan's 'non-thinking' and Manjushri's 'not relying even on not relying' aren't about you grasping your body and mind, telling you not to rely on the body, not to rely on the mind, nor to have the thought of not relying. That's not the point. 'Not relying even on not relying', 'non-thinking', all refer to your true nature, Truth. You can call it the local scenery, your nature, the luminous storehouse, samadhi. What more do you need to do! Eating, picking up a pair of chopsticks. When you pick up a pair of chopsticks, isn't it non-thinking in action? You don't recognize your real face as limitless, a presence that vastly transcends time and space. Why always confine yourself within such a small range, discussing non-thinking and not relying on not relying? Where has the understanding of the scriptures gone? The entire scripture is you, the real you is the scripture, not the theoretical part of the scripture that you read and understand. The sutra of Shakyamuni Buddha is the actual state of your own being, the real essence is the sutra itself. You don't need a master to go on stage to explain: 'Thus have I heard.' Who heard it! Sitting in meditation is just like this. Picking up a pair of chopsticks, you've already become a Buddha, that's the state of becoming Buddha. Then, sitting cross-legged steadily is the same as picking up a pair of chopsticks! But it is only that you added an illusory thought/perception, and therefore you ruined yourself. Mysteriously falling into the shackles of your own delusions.)


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Keeping in mind my translation suggestions above, pls do a translation for the following: [Chinese original text moved to bottom]
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Here's the translation of the text you provided, incorporating your suggestions:
 
Shikantaza - A Talk by Teacher Hong Wenliang
 
(Reposted from Zhengfayan Zang Forum: http://www.hongzen.com)
Teacher sitting down, a monk asked: "What are you contemplating so deeply?"
The teacher replied, "I'm contemplating that which is beyond contemplation."
The monk asked, "How can you contemplate the un-contemplatable?"
The teacher said, "It's non-thinking."
From the Record of the Five Lantern Meeting - Master Yao Shan Wei Yan
Someone asked Master Yao Shan Wei Yan how to practice zazen (just sitting).
Yao Shan said to contemplate the un-contemplatable.

Thinking about the unthinkable?! The questioner was baffled. How do you think about the unthinkable?
Once you think, you've already activated thought. Using thought to contemplate the unthinkable, how is that possible?

Master Yao Shan answered in three words: non-thinking.

Zazen is about being in this state of non-thinking. Achieving this is true zazen.

What then is the state of non-thinking?

non-thinking is a state of true and uncontrived reality, not a fabricated, imaginary, or conceptual state. It is the mind of no-thought, the state before the arising of discriminatory consciousness. What is the state before the arising of discriminatory consciousness? We have all forgotten it from our infancy, before thoughts began to differentiate; we do not know when this consciousness started to function, beginning to know this and that. We have forgotten all this. If we can return to this state, we can see our true face. Don’t think this state can be reached through inference; what is the state before thought stirs? Pursuing it with thought is a mistake again.

So, what to do? You can consult your ears and eyes, learn from them. I ask you all, when the ears hear a sound, do they discriminate whether it's good or bad before hearing? No! The eyes see whatever they encounter; do they choose what they like or dislike, what to see and what not to see? No! Therefore, the state before the six senses' discriminatory consciousness moves is the state of non-thinking. non-thinking doesn't mean nothingness. How do you know there’s nothingness? When you know there's nothing, isn't that your consciousness moving?

Buddha said in the Agama Sutras (Soh: Referring to Bahiya Sutta): "In the seen is just the seen, in the heard is just the heard." Our six senses are naturally free and unobstructed. So, in sitting meditation, just sit like that, letting the six senses function naturally and freely. Don't interfere with them, not even non-interfering interference. In essence, there isn’t an "I" watching or listening there. Thus, zazen is about allowing all phenomena to prove there's no you, not about you proving there's no you. The key is here; don't get it wrong. When you try to prove there's no you, an "I" is already there proving it. Is that forgetting the self? No!

So, how do all phenomena prove there's no you? What exactly are these phenomena?

The seen forms, heard sounds, smelled scents, tasted flavors, felt sensations of cold and heat, the arising and passing thoughts. All these phenomena are constantly telling you, there's no me! There's no me!
For example, your feet might go numb when sitting for a long time. Of course, they do, because you don't usually meditate, it's natural. If you think, 'I am practicing now, I must sit well, not let it numb, I must endure,' then you're already playing the game of "I." You don't usually practice zazen, so it's natural to feel numb when you sit; it's the law of dependent origination. Practice is about forgetting this 'self' – the false self. Don't indulge in this "I" in your practice.

I keep reiterating this key point, hoping you don't use me to forget me. Many think they must have no thoughts during zazen, so when many thoughts arise, they feel it's wrong and want to remove them. Is this correct? You think, 'I am diligent, why so many thoughts today, no! No!' If you sit and think like this, you are fooling around, showing off yourself. Reflect carefully: do you know when a thought will arise? When it leaves, does it ask your permission to go? Thoughts don't belong to you; they arise due to conditions. You don't know when a thought will come or go. When a thought arises, then you realize, "Ah, a thought," that's your discriminative consciousness knowing afterward. If you still think there's a 'you' knowing, that's your delusion. This is fundamental ignorance; practice aims to resolve this root issue.

When thoughts come and go during zazen, don't think there's an unchanging 'you' knowing their coming and going, thinking this is right. Thinking there's an unchanging 'you' against the changing thoughts, as if there are two separate thoughts, is incorrect. In fact, the arising thought itself is the function of your Dharma Body. Many don't understand this, mistakenly thinking there's an "I" knowing thoughts coming and going. If you know brightness, you know darkness; if the unchanging knows the changing, then it's real - No! That's wrong! That's an externalist view. You have an unchanging concept in your mind, treasuring it as the truth. Isn't that your imagination? If there's no you, what do you need the unchanging for?

Our six functions of eye, ear, nose, tongue, body, and mind operate freely and unobstructedly within the true and selfless reality. We misunderstand, taking the ability to discriminate and contemplate as 'me.' In fact, it's just the function of the Dharma Body. Discriminative thought is so sharp that when it operates, we automatically take the ability to discriminate as 'me.' Actually, the mind is like the eye or ear; whatever condition it encounters, it exists, all are true reality. When you encounter a stone, it's a stone; a bun, it's a bun. You don't name 'stone' or 'bun' before recognizing them. Language differentiation is the discriminative consciousness activity after the fact. Before that, the stone, the bun, the object exists, clearly distinguished before discriminative consciousness moves. Non-discriminative discrimination means this. If you don't add 'I,' our minds are inherently clear and distinct.

When our eyes encounter a form, the form and perception are one function. Similarly, the arising of a thought and the selfless knowing are one function. So, the coming thought is the function of your mind root, actually your true reality. It's good if practice can understand this. Understanding this, oh, you've progressed; during zazen, you won't fear thoughts coming and going because thoughts themselves are your true reality. Do you think there's another thought to let you know? Impossible! Because at every moment, ability and object, root and dust, mind and environment, thought and you, are inseparably one, always functioning, arising, and ceasing together, inherently one. We forcefully split one thing into two for explanation, which is after-the-fact cleverness, post-event consciousness differentiation.

Snap! (Sound of slapping the table). Delusion is due to it, thinking, "Ah, I heard him slap the table"; enlightenment is also due to this, "Oh, oh, oh, it's not you knocking there, and I'm listening here; sound and the ability to hear are one thing." Snap! (Sound of slapping). Enlightenment and delusion are the same. The same sound, one deluded, one enlightened. It's not that upon enlightenment, you hear the sound differently, or as some think, enlightenment means entering samadhi and hearing nothing; then you might as well be a stone. That's not enlightenment. It's not seeing a bun as a diamond, a thatched hut as a palace, a restroom as a restaurant. That's insanity!
 
Let me tell you, where's the delusion? If you take a relative form as truly existing there, and here, truly an 'I' seeing that form, that's delusion. Enlightenment is the absence of the false self's misrecognition. There isn't a truly existing relative form over there; it's formless, manifesting that way. Manifesting from nothingness to somethingness. And here, it's the existence born of conditions, not a true existence called 'me.' The ability to see and the seen form are both selfless, interacting in dependent origination and cessation. This is the so-called dependent origination, inherently selfless. Understand this, and seeing, hearing, all is the Dharma Body, encountering conditions it manifests, arising and ceasing, changing unobstructedly.
For those who haven't seen their nature, it's always 'I heard that sound'. I and the sound are separate, 'I' (root) and the outside existence (dust) are always relative and isolated. This way, you can never become a Buddha or a good student of the Buddha. If there's an 'I' seeking the Dharma, 'I' pray for blessings, 'I' want to become a Buddha, 'I' want enlightenment. Practicing this way, you're always cultivating the false self. The result will only increase and amplify your self-view, moving further away from the path.
The proper practice of zazen is so important, letting you discover your true self. How to discover? Not by 'I' knowing, discovering this is not me. If so,
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you're using a false self to discover the true self.
What to do then? — Just let the six senses be, simply sitting.
The six senses are truly just present, operating naturally within the true and unobstructed reality. This is the so-called natural, unobstructed functioning of the six senses. It's so natural, a matter of course. Only in the genuine practice of zazen, at that very moment, do you realize our mind is incredibly vast, its applications infinite. The six senses function naturally: eyes seeing forms, ears hearing sounds, nose smelling scents, tongue tasting flavors, body feeling touches, mind perceiving phenomena. All actions and movements are the Dharma Body. The six senses are unimpeded, free from attachment or aversion, equally interacting with arising and ceasing conditions, naturally liberated.
Siddhartha Gautama Buddha himself said, if you can genuinely let all phenomena prove there's no you, sitting zazen honestly in this way, just the time it takes for an ant to crawl from your nose to your forehead is more beneficial than sitting for ten, a hundred years with an 'I'. If you seek the Dharma with yourself for a hundred billion years, it's impossible, forever impossible. Because there's an "I" wanting to become a Buddha!
"Shikantaza," this method, is the authentic practice of zazen. Sitting in that moment is performing the Buddha's dignified conduct, Buddha's actions. The moment without delusion is Buddha's dignified conduct, hence this is called the method of great ease.
Recorded at the Seven-Day Zen Festival at He Ming Temple, Kuala Lumpur, 1999
Lecture by Teacher Hong Wenliang
Arranged by Dr. Luo
That completes the translation of the text, incorporating your suggestions for a more nuanced understanding of terms and concepts. If you have any further texts for translation or other queries, feel free to ask!
只管打坐-洪文亮老师开示 (2009-11-09 10:11:33)
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标签: 洪文亮 坐禅 禅 道信 文化 曹洞 佛法 正法 只管打坐 打坐 分类: 洪文亮老师
只管打坐
(转自正法眼藏论坛:http://www.hongzen.com
師坐次,僧問:「兀兀地思量什麽?」
師曰:「思量箇不思量底。」
僧曰:「不思量底如何思量。」
師曰:「非思量。」
五燈會元~藥山惟嚴
有人问药山惟俨禅师怎么打坐?
药山说思量个不思量底。
思想那个不思想的?!问的人傻了,那个不思想的怎么样去思想?
思想了就巳经动了思想,用思想去思想那个不思想的,那怎么可能啊?
药山禅师回答,三个字:非思量。
打坐就是要你在这个非思量境界,做到了就是真正打坐。
那么非思量是什么境界呢?
非思量是个真实不虚的状态,并不是虚构的,假想的或理念的状态。这就是叫做无念之念,是分别意识不动以前的境界。那么分别意识发生作用之前到底是什么样的一个状态呢?大家都忘了在小婴儿的时候,念头还没有起分别之前;也不知道从什么时候,分别意识发生了作用,开始知道这个,知道那个。这些我们都忘了。如果能够恢复到这个状,我们就能看到自己真正的面目。千万不要以为这个状态能用推想可达到,这个思想不动以前是什么样的状态呢?用思想去追求,那可又弄错了。
那怎么办?你可以向你的耳朵、眼睛讨教,向它们学习。请问各位,当耳朵听声音时,它有没有分别这个好还是不好才听?没有啊!眼睛对到什么就看到什么,它有没有分别这个喜欢那个不喜欢,这个要看,那个不要看?没有啊!所以六根对境分别意识还没有动之前的状态,这个就是非思量境界。不是什么都没有才是非思量。你怎么知道什么都没有?当你知道个什么都没有时,那还不是你的意识动吗?
佛在阿含经说:“看就是这样看,听就是这样听”。我们的六根本来就是自由自在的。所以静坐时就只是这样的坐,六根本身在自自然然的状况下来去自如。千万不要去管它们,甚至不管也不管。总之不是有一个我在那里看那里听。所以坐禅就是让万法来证明没有你,不是有一个你来证明没有你。关键就在这一点,千万就不要搞错了。因为当你自己去证明没有你的时候,你已经有一个“我”去证明了,这个还是叫忘我吗?没有吧!
那么如何让万法来证明没有你?万法指的又是什么?
看到的色相,听到的声音,嗅到的气味,尝到的味道,感受到的冷热,来去的念头。这些万法处处都在告诉你,没有我啊!没有我啊!
例如坐久了脚会麻,当然是麻嘛,因为你平常不打坐嘛,这是自然的关系。你说现在我来修行,我要坐得好,不要让它麻,我一定要忍耐住,这样坐已经是在玩起“我”的游戏来了。你平常不练习打坐,坐一下会麻,那当然嘛;因为这就是缘生之法。修行就是要忘掉这个我~假我。千万不要玩弄这个“我”去修行。
这个关键的地方我再三的讲明,希望各位不要拿我去忘掉我。很多人以为打坐时要没有念头才对,所以打坐的时候有很多念头,就觉得我这样念头纷飞不好,要把它去除掉。请问各位这样对不对?你想我是个用功的人,打坐功夫好,怎么今天念头这么多,不要!不要!其实如果这样坐这样想的话,你自己已经在胡搞了,在卖弄自己了。这里请各位自己细心反省一下,念头来,你知不知道那个念头要来?念头去,它要去的时候也有没有请教你可不可以去,对不对?因为念头本身就不属于你的啊!它是缘生之法。什么念头要来你不知道,它什么时候跑掉你也不知道。所以当念头来了之后你才知道:“啊!念头”,那是你的分别意识在事后去知道的。如果还以为有一个你在知道,那就是你自己的妄想。这就是所谓的根本无明,修行就是为了要解决这个根本问题。
 
当打坐的时候念头来念头去,你千万不要以为有个不动的在知道你的念头来去,就以为这个对了。以为有一个不动的对着一个来去的念头,好象有两个个别的念头,那是不对的。其实,来的念头本身就是你法身的用。很多人不晓得这个,误以为有一个“我”知道念头来,念头去。明来知道明,暗来知道暗,那个不动的就是真的了——唉呀!错了!这是外道的说法。你有一个不动的在你的概念里头,拿这个不动的当宝贝,然后觉得这个就对了。那不是你想象出来的吗?如果没有你,还要那个不动的做什么!
我们的眼耳鼻舌身意六个作用,通通都在无我的、真正的实相里头自由自在的活动。我们就是误会了,把那个能分别思虑的当作是我。其实它本身只是法身的作用而已。分别思虑这个东西太灵了,一起分别作用的时候我们就自动的把能分别的当作是我。其实意根和眼根耳根一样,对到什么缘,那个在,皆是实相。当你对到石头就是石头,对到馒头就是馒头,你不会在讲石头和馒头这二个名字后,才知道是石头是馒头吧!文字语言的分辨,是事实发生以后的分别意识活动。这个以前,石头在,馒头在,那个在,是分别意识还没有动以前,本身已是了了清楚的分别的了。无分别的分别就是这个意思。如果没有把“我”加进去,我们的意根本来就了了分明。
当我们的眼睛对到相,相跟见,是一体的作用。同样的道理,念头的升起跟那个无我的知,也是一体的作用。所以来的念头本身就是你意根的作用,其实就是你的实相。修行能够知道这个就好了。能够了解到这个,噢,你就进步了,你在打坐时就不怕念头的来去,因为念头本身就是你的实相啊。你以为另外有一个念头能让你知道吗?不可能的啦!因为在每一刻的当下能和所、根和尘、心和境、念头和你,本来是不可分开的,永远同时用,同时起,同时灭。本来就是一体的。是我们把一个东西硬硬分开两个来说明,这就是事后的聪明,事实之后的意识分别。
啪!(拍桌子声),迷也是因为它,认为“啊!我听到他拍桌子”;悟也是因为这个,“噢!噢!噢!原来不是你在那里敲,我在这里听,声音跟能听的是一体的东西啊”。啪!(拍桌声),悟也是这个,迷也是这个。同样一个声音,一个迷一个悟。不是悟了就把这个声音听成别的声音,或者一般人以为悟了就等于入定时什么都听不见,那你当石头好了。这也不是说你悟了,就会把馒头看成金刚石,把草茅蓬看成宫殿,把厕所看成饭店。不是这样的,那是神经病!
告诉诸位,迷在何处?如果把一个相对的色相,当作真正有一个色相在那里;而我这里呢,也是真正的有一个我在看到那个色相,这就是迷。而开悟就是假我的误认没有了。那里不是有一个相对的色相真正的存在,而是无相而显现那个样子。无而有的那个样子显现。而我这里呢,也是无而有的缘所生的存在而已,不是真实的有一个叫做‘我’的存在。能看的功能和所看的相,都是无自性对无自性,在缘生缘灭。这就是所谓的缘所生法,了无自性。把这个弄清楚了,一样看一样听,这一切就是法身,遇缘则显,即生即灭,变化无碍。
没有见性的人,永远是我听到那个声音。我和声音是相互分开的,我(根)是跟外面的存在(尘),是永远相对而隔离的。这样永远没有办法成佛,也不是佛的好学生。如果有一个我在求佛法,我拜了会得到加持,我要成佛,我要开悟。以这样的方式来修道你就一直都是在修那个假我。结果会使到自己的我见越修就越多越大,离道愈远。
正传的坐禅是那么的重要,能让各位自己去发现真正的自己。怎样去发现呢?不是“我”去知道,去发现这个不是我。如果这样做,那你已经拿一个假我想去发现真正的自己。
那怎么办呢?——放任六根兀兀的坐。
六根本来就是那么的实实在在,如如的在那里活动,这就是所谓的六般神用空不空。那么自然啊。这是必然的关系嘛。这就是说唯有在真正坐禅的当下,就会悟到我们的心量本来是很广大的,应用无穷。六根应眼见色,应耳闻声,应鼻嗅香,应舌知味,应身知触,应意知法,一切施为运动,皆是法身。六根本来毫无挂碍,无爱无憎,平等平等地随缘生灭,皆自然解脱。
释迦牟尼佛亲自讲,如果你能够真正让万法来证明根本没有你,这样子老老实实的去坐禅,这样子去修持的话,只需要像蚂蚁从你的鼻头跑到你的额头这样短的时间,就胜过你用一个我去坐十年一百年。如果用自己去求法一百亿年都没有办法的啦,永远没有办法的。因为有一个“你”想要成佛啊!
“只管打坐”这个法门,是正传的坐禅之法。坐的当下就是行佛威仪,就是佛的行履。没有妄想的当下就是佛的行仪,所以这个叫做大安乐法门。
1999年吉隆坡鹤鸣寺七日禅节录
洪文亮老师主讲
罗医师整理
 
 

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  • Peyman ZS
    Soh Wei Yu
    The way you’ve described it above, it is an experience.
    Sometimes you’re in it, sometimes you’re not.
    It comes, and it goes.
    When the insight is temporarily forgotten, what changes exactly, experientially ?

    • Reply
    • Edited

  • Soh Wei Yu
    You might have misunderstood. Realisation of anatman is not an experience of no-mind. There is no entry or exit. This is unlike a peak experience of no-mind which can be merely temporary.
    Anatta is a Dharma Seal or Truth that is Always Already So, Anatta is Not a State
    Wrote in 2018:
    "If someone talks about an experience he/she had and then lost it, that's not (the true, deep) awakening... As many teachers put it, it's the great samadhi without entry and exit.
    John Tan: There is no entry and exit. Especially for no-self. Why is there no entry and exit?
    Me (Soh): Anatta (no-self) is always so, not a stage to attain. So it's about realisation and shift of perception.
    John Tan: Yes 👍
    As John also used to say to someone else, "Insight that 'anatta' is a seal and not a stage must arise to further progress into the 'effortless' mode. That is, anatta is the ground of all experiences and has always been so, no I. In seeing, always only seen, in hearing always only sound and in thinking, always only thoughts. No effort required and never was there an 'I'.""
    Also:
    Differentiate Wisdom from Art
    Replying to someone in Rinzai Zen discussion group, John Tan wrote recently:
    “I think we have to differentiate wisdom from an art or a state of mind.
    In Master Sheng Yen’s death poem,
    Busy with nothing till old. (无事忙中老)
    In emptiness, there is weeping and laughing. (空里有哭笑)
    Originally there never was any 'I'. (本来没有我)
    Thus life and death can be cast aside. (生死皆可抛)
    This "Originally there never was any 'I'" is wisdom and the dharma seal of anatta. It is neither an art like an artist in zone where self is dissolved into the flow of action nor is it a state to be achieved in the case of the taoist "坐忘" (sit and forget) -- a state of no-mind.
    For example in cooking, there is no self that cooks, only the activity of cooking. The hands moves, the utensils act, the water boils, the potatoes peel and the universe sings together in the act of cooking. Whether one appears clumsy or smooth in act of cooking doesn't matter and when the dishes r out, they may still taste horrible; still there never was any "I" in any moment of the activity. There is no entry or exit point in the wisdom of anatta.”
    Labels: Anatta, Zen Master Sheng-yen 1 comments | |
    Soh wrote in 2007 based on what John Tan wrote:
    First I do not see Anatta as merely a freeing from personality sort of experience as you mentioned; I see it as that a self/agent, a doer, a thinker, a watcher, etc, cannot be found apart from the moment to moment flow of manifestation or as its commonly expressed as ‘the observer is the observed’; there is no self apart from arising and passing. A very important point here is that Anatta/No-Self is a Dharma Seal, it is the nature of Reality all the time -- and not merely as a state free from personality, ego or the ‘small self’ or a stage to attain. This means that it does not depend on the level of achievement of a practitioner to experience anatta but Reality has always been Anatta and what is important here is the intuitive insight into it as the nature, characteristic, of phenomenon (dharma seal).
    To put further emphasis on the importance of this point, I would like to borrow from the Bahiya Sutta (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/.../kn/ud/ud.1.10.irel.html) that ‘in the seeing, there is just the seen, no seer’, ‘in the hearing, there is just the heard, no hearer’ as an illustration. When a person says that I have gone beyond the experiences from ‘I hear sound’ to a stage of ‘becoming sound’, he is mistaken. When it is taken to be a stage, it is illusory. For in actual case, there is and always is only sound when hearing; never was there a hearer to begin with. Nothing attained for it is always so. This is the seal of no-self. Therefore to a non dualist, the practice is in understanding the illusionary views of the sense of self and the split. Before the awakening of prajna wisdom, there will always be an unknowing attempt to maintain a purest state of 'presence'. This purest presence is the 'how' of a dualistic mind -- its dualistic attempt to provide a solution due to its lack of clarity of the spontaneous nature of the unconditioned. It is critical to note here that both the doubts/confusions/searches and the solutions that are created for these doubts/confusions/searches actually derive from the same cause -- our karmic propensities of ever seeing things dualistically.
    John Tan adds: "This is the seal of no-self and can be realized and experienced in all moments; not just a mere concept."
    Labels: Anatta |
    Anatta is a Dharma Seal or Truth that is Always Already So, Anatta is Not a State
    AWAKENINGTOREALITY.COM
    Anatta is a Dharma Seal or Truth that is Always Already So, Anatta is Not a State
    Anatta is a Dharma Seal or Truth that is Always Already So, Anatta is Not a State

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  • Peyman ZS
    So you’re saying in this life it is never forgotten, and always so, but in the next life it can be forgotten?
    Thanks!


  • Soh Wei Yu
    Peyman ZS Yes. Anatta is realised as a dharma seal, always already so. That realisation will not be forgotten this life but may be forgotten next life. Just like when you grow up and realised santa claus is fake, you will never again be tricked into believing santa claus is real in this life. But in your next life you may be tricked into believing in santa claus again.


  • Peyman ZS
    Soh Wei Yu I’m just curious how this corresponds to the idea of rigpa being fragmented/interrupted for anyone that isn’t a Buddha, as we say in Acharya’s Dzogchen circle.
    It seems an Arya still has equipoise and post equipoise. Any thoughts ? I’m trying to understand what changes between those two states.


  • Soh Wei Yu
    Peyman ZS Joyfully delight in the uninterrupted vision of the objects of the six senses!
    Whatever you enjoy, bodhi will blaze more and more.
    When one has obtained the power of the supreme presence and become familiar with it,
    Meditating means leaving the six sense consciousness free and relaxed!
    ...
    It is thought that creates the duality of mind and object;
    It is wisdom that perceives them as non-dual.
    Meditation means understanding there is nothing to enter into or exit from.
    Not grasping what appears is the state of self-liberation!
    ~ Dzogchen book The Supreme Source


  • Soh Wei Yu
    Peyman ZS I recall John Tan said many years ago for him there is no entry and exit with regards to agent-agency-perceiver-perceived, the same for me. There is no subject-object duality or perceiver or agent all the time, no entry or exit to nondual experience, which is also the same here. He also commented something about characteristics of phenomena not being permanently eliminated all the time, although he has since made further breakthroughs that eliminates cognitive obscurations.
    Also related,
    “John Tan
    Just free ourselves from sense of self first, then it is probably 60% done. After then gradually to all notions into supreme purity.
    · Reply · 1d
    Arthur Deller
    John Tan I like that. Where did the 60% factor in!?!? No self is true. For whom would the other 40% apply. 😎
    · Reply · 1d
    John Tan
    Arthur Deller an arbitrary number...haha. "For whom" is within the 60%. If we start from other notions like cause and effect, will most likely end up as intellectual entertainment.😝
    · Reply · 1d
    Arthur Deller
    in the words of Maximus. “Are you not entertained”.
    I’ve had enough intellectual stimulation to last an eon or so.
    In thinking no thinker
    Thought with no thinking.
    · Reply · 1d
    John Tan
    If both thinker and thinking are deconstructed, why do you keep that thought?
    · Reply · 1d
    Arthur Deller
    John Tan I don’t. They just come and go. Like pixels. Fuzzy characters with no landing place.
    · Reply · 1d
    John Tan
    Arthur Deller then notion of "coming", "landing" and "going" must be subjected to the same scrutiny like thinker, thinking and thought.
    · Reply · 1d · Edited
    Arthur Deller
    John Tan I had a feeling that you picked up on that. Was gonna go into the non-arising via DO, but my brain 🧠 said it isn’t necessary.
    · Reply · 1d
    Arthur Deller
    John Tan you just lit a 🔥. In deep samadhi and insight meditation that’s very clear. On the go throughout the day while interacting, not as much.
    · Reply · 1d
    John Tan
    Arthur Deller distinguishing appearances and imputed notions added to mere appearances is a life long journey and indeed, daily engagement is the real meditation.
    · Reply · 1d · Edited
    Arthur Deller
    John Tan Hence the other 40%. Nice.©


  • Soh Wei Yu
    In the Mahamudra path, equipoise and post-equipoise begins to be mixed at the yoga of one taste, although it is not perfected until the yoga of non-meditation. See Mahamudra: The Moonlight:
    The stage of one flavor consists of the mind being settled
    evenly in its primal purity without affirming or rejecting
    the concepts of whether all things of saṃsāra and nirvāṇa
    are empty or not empty and of whether the mind has
    detached itself from the view of phenomena as absolute
    arising or dissolving. Je Phagdru explains:
    By meditating on the one flavor of all things,
    The meditator will cognize the one flavor of all these
    things.
    The diversity of appearances and nonappearances,
    Mind and emptiness, emptiness and nonemptiness,
    Are all of one flavor, nondifferentiable in their
    intrinsic emptiness.
    Understanding and lack of understanding are of one
    flavor;
    Equipoise and postequipoise are nondifferentiable;
    Meditation and absence of meditation are unified into
    one flavor;
    Discrimination and lack of discrimination are one
    flavor
    In the expanse of reality.
    Je Shang says:
    When the one-flavor stage dawns,
    One will cognize the characteristics of mind;
    One will realize that the diverse things of saṃsāra and
    nirvāṇa
    Arise from the mind’s nondiscriminatory dharmakāya.
    Appearance and absence of appearance,
    Stability and absence of stability,
    Emptiness and absence of emptiness,
    Clarity and absence of clarity
    Are all of one flavor in the luminous dharmakāya.
    The nonmeditation stage consists of [an enlightened
    mind] that has cleared all stains of inner sensation and
    experience and has achieved a harmonious blend of the
    understanding of the illuminating process with the abiding
    nature of the mind. Such a mind is completely detached
    from the duality of absorption and postabsorption,
    mindfulness and distraction. Je Phagdru writes:
    By perfecting this [nonmeditation stage]
    The meditator attains naked, unsupported awareness.
    This nondiscriminatory awareness is the meditation!
    By transcending the duality of meditation and
    meditator,
    External and internal realities,
    The meditating awareness dissolves itself
    Into its luminous clarity.
    Transcending the intellect,
    It is without the duality of equipoise and
    postequipoise.
    Such is the quintessence of mind.
    Je Shang concludes:
    When the nonmeditation stage of yoga dawns,
    The essence of awareness detaches itself
    From any inborn supports.
    The yogin will find nothing to meditate on,
    Because the unreality of the meditator has been
    exposed.
    It is proclaimed that the potential of enlightenment
    Is contained in every mind.
    Adorned with the three transcending forms 200
    And the five aspects of awareness,201
    One will discover this by oneself.
    Since there is agreement among most of the oral
    transmissions concerning the identification of the four
    stages of yoga, I have not elaborated on them here.


  • Soh Wei Yu
    6. The difference between absorption and
    postabsorption
    Je Gomchung comments:
    At the one-pointed stage there arise
    Both appropriate equipoise and postequipoise.
    At the nondiscriminatory stage there arise
    Differentiable equipoise and postequipoise.
    At the stage of one flavor there emerges
    The union of equipoise and postequipoise.
    At the stage of nonmeditation
    There is an all-round absorption.
    Since no exact nondiscriminatory awareness emerges in
    the one-pointed stage, there is no distinctive meditative
    absorption. Similarly, there is no distinctive
    postabsorption, since illusionlike postabsorption does not
    arise without the realization of the nonarising [emptiness]
    of all appearances. However, it is possible for the
    meditator, on this level of practice, to absorb his mind into
    the meditation and also to regain it immediately after
    getting distracted by simply revitalizing the mindfulness.
    The distinctive meditative absorption is achieved in the
    nondiscriminatory stage, because the awareness that dawns
    consists of a dimension of nonduality. As a
    nondifferentiating awareness it is detached from the mind’s
    clinging to the dualities of subject-object, external and
    internal. The distinctive postabsorption is achieved when
    the meditator cognizes the [inevitable] simple appearance
    of duality as only ephemeral illusion. And thus meditative
    absorption and postabsorption are differentiated.
    In the absorptive equipoise at the stage of one flavor, all
    dualities such as appearance and emptiness are perceived
    as being nondual. Even during postabsorption, whenever
    the meditator through mindfulness of nonduality cognizes
    appearance and emptiness as nondual and illusionlike, his
    practice is merely described as a blend of absorption with
    postabsorption.
    In the stage of nonmeditation, even though sensory
    appearances continue to emerge, they arise and dissolve in
    nothing other than the absorptive equipoise. Hence there is
    considered to be nothing but total absorption.
    Je Shang sums it up thus:
    Whenever one is absorbed in primordial awareness,
    Whatever one may be doing – jumping, running,
    murmuring, or talking –
    One is still in equipoise.
    Whenever one is detached from primordial
    awareness,
    One slips into postabsorption,
    Even though one may be sitting in meditation.
    He continues:
    However high the spiritual attainment,
    As long as one has not mastered meditation,
    There will emerge the dualities
    Of absorption and postabsorption,
    Sustained and unsustained mindfulness,
    A distracted and undistracted mind.
    Once the meditational state dawns
    Without any need to strive for it,
    Then this is described as the stage of nonmeditation.
    Whenever an innermost awareness encompasses each of
    the first three yoga stages, the meditator is in an
    appropriate equipoise, even though he may be engaged in
    jumping, running, or talking. But whenever such an
    awareness is absent, the meditator’s mental stage is
    reduced to a postabsorptive perception, even though he
    may be sitting in meditation. As long as the meditator has
    the need to strive for meditational perfection, there will be
    such dualities as equipoise and postequipoise, sustained
    and unsustained mindfulness, a distracted and undistracted
    mind. It must be noted that the actual nonmeditation stage
    consists of the union [of luminous awareness and the
    supreme illusor y form] on the path of noncultivation.202


  • Soh Wei Yu
    7. The time of realization for each of the four yoga
    stages
    Je Gomchung comments on the time thus:
    It comes when one is deeply absorbed in the onepointed
    stage,
    When one masters both equipoise and postequipoise
    in the nondiscriminatory stage,
    When one succeeds in blending equipoise and
    postequipoise in the stage of one flavor,
    And when one realizes the stage of nonmeditation
    [enlightenment].
    The meditator achieves a definite experience in
    meditative equipoise at the one-pointed stage when he
    maintains the inner sensation and the conscious certainty
    through revitalized mindfulness. He reorients his
    meditation to the perception during the period of
    postabsorption through a vigorous mindfulness. The
    meditator masters both equipoise and postequipoise at the
    nondiscriminatory stage when he meditates first on the
    spacelike absorption with sustained mindfulness and then
    on the illusionlike postabsorption during the period of
    postabsorption. The meditator achieves the one even state
    of all things at the stage of one flavor when he meditates on
    the union of absorption and postabsorption by being
    perfectly aware of the nonduality of appearance and
    emptiness. The meditator achieves the indivisible union of
    equipoise and postequipoise at the stage of nonmeditation
    when he perfects this meditation to its ultimate limit.
    Je Gampopa comments on the realization:
    A spontaneous fulfillment is achieved
    When one masters the one-pointed stage;
    A nondual awareness is achieved
    When one masters the nondiscriminatory stage;
    The inconceivable nature of mind is realized
    When one masters the stage of one flavor;
    The ultimate perfection is realized
    When one masters the stage of nonmeditation.
    8. Some other characteristics of these four stages
    Je Gyare comments:
    At the one-pointed stage
    Inner sensations dawn and diminish;
    Karma is accumulated,
    For this is the path of the transient world.
    At the nondiscriminatory stage
    One focuses on the nondual state [the transcendental
    path],
    The way one perceives one’s fatherland [with
    familiarity],
    And stabilizes the contemplation in absorption and
    postabsorption.
    At the stage of one flavor
    Appearance emerges as meditation,
    Which lasts
    For an uninterrupted period of time.
    The stage of nonmeditation
    Is the seat of dharmakāya.
    This means a pure concept
    For most meditators on this level.203
    Je Gyare explains further:
    By meditating on the one-pointed yoga for a long time
    The meditator will inevitably eliminate
    His attachment to sensory pleasures
    And will gain certain powers achieved by the ancient
    ascetics,
    Such as the power of supercognition, transformation,
    and the like.
    By maintaining the awareness of the
    nondiscriminatory yoga
    The meditator will perceive the great spectacle
    Of uncertain reality and its false appearance.
    He will attain certain vital qualities of a Bodhisattva,
    Such as compassion without any self-concern,
    According to the intensity of his training
    And the level of his intelligence.
    By maintaining the state of one flavor for a long time
    He will perceive the great spectacle of the pure lands
    of the Buddhas.
    No matter what he does, whether sitting in a reclining
    position,
    Standing on his head, or walking,
    [His absorption] is immobile, like a king who is
    firmly seated;
    [He perceives] the interrelated unity
    Of the apparent and ultimate realities,
    Like the sight of a magnificent silk cloth in the
    sunlight.
    He attains certain qualities of enlightenment
    And will then fulfill the hopes of innumerable sentient
    beings.
    When the meditator reaches the highest level of
    nonmeditation,
    He will achieve the transcendental qualities
    And will then carry out his spiritual functions
    To their ultimate limit.


  • Soh Wei Yu
    It is a much longer book than Clarifying the Natural State, another must read book by Dakpo Tashi Namgyal. But the longer book is also very good and worth reading, I read it a decade+ ago.


  • Soh Wei Yu
    On the other hand, if one merely have a peak experience of no-mind, it is not yet without entry and exit, and is before the realisation of anatman. This is what is spoken here:
    Session Start: Sunday, 29 May, 2011
    (7:17 PM) Thusness: anatta is often not correctly understood
    it is common that one progress from experience of non-dual to no-mind instead of direct realization into anatta
    (7:19 PM) Thusness: many focus on the experience
    and there is a lack of clarity to penetrate the differences
    so u must be clear of the various phases of insights first and not mistake one for the other
    at the same time, refine your experience
    these few days...have deeper sleep and exercise more
    balance your body energies
    Conversations with Thusness 2009-2013 on I AM, One Mind, No Mind and Anatta:
    (9:12 PM) Thusness: no mind is an experience, it is not an insight
    (9:14 PM) Thusness: ppl that have experienced no-mind knows there is such experience and aims towards achieving it again.
    (9:14 PM) Thusness: but insight is different...it is a direct experiential realization.
    (9:14 PM) AEN: icic..
    (9:14 PM) Thusness: that all along it is so.
    (11:19 PM) Thusness: u may have no-mind as an experience and understood that there is such an experience as simple manifestation or just the radiant world
    (11:19 PM) Thusness: but still it remains as a stage
    (11:19 PM) Thusness: u have no idea that it is a wrong view
    (11:20 PM) Thusness: we do not 'see' that it is the wrong view that 'blinds'
    a mistaken view shaping our entire experience
    (11:22 PM) AEN: icic..
    (11:23 PM) AEN: dharma dan calls it the knot of perception rite
    (11:23 PM) Thusness: yes
    (11:23 PM) AEN: so no mind is a strage?
    stage
    (11:24 PM) Thusness: no-mind is the peak of non-dual, the natural state of non-dual
    (11:24 PM) AEN: oic
    (11:24 PM) Thusness: where the background is completely gone
    (11:25 PM) Thusness: very often a practitioner in an advance phase of non-dual and One Mind, will naturally knows the importance of no-mind.
    And that becomes the practice
    they know they have to be there
    (11:26 PM) Thusness: however, to come to this natural state of non-dual where the background is deemed irrelevant, it requires insight of anatta.
    (12:09 AM) Thusness: and say yes, u realized ur mistake. wrote too fast.
    Awareness is just a label...
    (12:11 AM) Thusness: some of the texts u quoted are also misleading
    (12:12 AM) Thusness: when one spoke to others in longchen forum, some is to lead one into non-dual from "I AM" coz they can't accept anatta insight but is able to penetrate non-dual.
    (12:13 AM) Thusness: when anatta insight arises, one realizes there is no background
    (12:14 AM) Thusness: when insight of emptiness arise, then all is just sharing the same taste, luminous yet empty
    (12:14 AM) AEN: icic..
    (12:15 AM) Thusness: that is, i do not see Awareness, just a luminous manifestation
    there is no sense of Self/self
    or Awareness
    (12:16 AM) Thusness: there is always only sound, forms, smell...sweetness....hardness...thoughts...
    effortlessly manifesting
    (12:16 AM) Thusness: non-dually experienced
    (12:18 AM) Thusness: in terms of actual experience, what that is written in the forum is not enough
    (12:18 AM) Thusness: the intensity of luminosity isn't there.
    (12:19 AM) Thusness: first u go through the "I AM" for a period first
    later u will understand what i mean
    (12:12 AM) Thusness: not by way of non-identification.
    (12:13 AM) Thusness: by realization -- the arising insight there the mirror does not exist
    (12:15 AM) Thusness: if at the back of one's mind, there is this belief of a self, then will experience of no-mind be intermittent or permanent?
    (12:16 AM) AEN: intermittent
    (12:17 AM) Thusness: so how is one without the realization have a permanent experience of no-mind? There is no clarity, no doubtlessness of no-self, is it possible that there is a permanent and effortless experience of all sensate experiences without self?
    Thusness: ...To be more exact, the so called 'background' consciousness is that pristine happening. There is no a 'background' and a 'pristine happening'. During the initial phase of non-dual, there is still habitual attempt to 'fix' this imaginary split that does not exist. It matures when we realized that anatta is a seal, not a stage; in hearing, always only sounds; in seeing always only colors, shapes and forms; in thinking, always only thoughts. Always and already so. -:)
    Differentiating I AM, One Mind, No Mind and Anatta
    AWAKENINGTOREALITY.COM
    Differentiating I AM, One Mind, No Mind and Anatta
    Differentiating I AM, One Mind, No Mind and Anatta

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  • Soh Wei Yu
    “William Lam: It's non conceptual.
    John Tan: It’s non conceptual. Yup. Okay. Presence is not conceptual experience, it has to be direct. And you just feel pure sense of existence. Means people ask you, before birth, who are you? You just authenticate the I, that is yourself, directly. So when you first authenticate that I, you are damn happy, of course. When young, that time, wah… I authenticate this I… so you thought that you’re enlightened, but then the journey continues. So this is the first time you taste something that is different. It is… It is before thoughts, there is no thoughts. Your mind is completely still. You feel still, you feel presence, and you know yourself. Before birth it is Me, after birth, it is also Me, 10,000 years it’s still this Me, 10,000 year before, it’s still this Me. So you authenticate that, your mind is just that and authenticate your own true being, so you don't doubt that. In later phase…
    Kenneth Bok: Presence is this I AM?
    John Tan: Presence is the same as I AM. Presence is the same as… of course, other people may disagree, but actually they're referring to the same thing. The same authentication, the same what... even in Zen is still the same.
    But in later phase, I conceive that as just the thought realm. Means, in the six, I always call the six entries and six exits, so there is the sound and there’s all these… During that time, you always say I’m not sound, I’m not the appearance, I AM the Self that is behind all these appearances, alright? So, sounds, sensations, all these come and go, your thoughts come and go, those are not me, correct? This is the ultimate Me. The Self is the ultimate Me. Correct?
    William Lam: So, is that nondual? The I AM stage. It’s non-conceptual, was it nondual?
    John Tan: It’s nonconceptual. Yes, it is nondual. Why is it nondual? At that moment, there is no duality at all, at that moment when you experience the Self, you cannot have duality, because you are authenticated directly as IT, as this pure sense of Being. So, it’s completely I, there’s nothing else, just I. There’s nothing else, just the Self. I think, many of you have experienced this, the I AM. So, you probably will go and visit all the Hinduism, sing song with them, meditate with them, sleep with them, correct? Those are the young days. I meditate with them, hours after hours, meditate, sit with them, eat with them, sing song with them, drum with them. Because this is what they preach, and you find these group of people, all talking about the same language.
    So this experience is not a normal experience, correct? I mean, within the probably 15 years of my life or 17 years of my life, my first... when I was 17, when you first experienced that, wah, what is that? So, it is something different, it is non conceptual, it is non dual, and all these. But it is very difficult to get back the experience. Very, very difficult, unless you're in when you're in meditation, because you reject the relative, the appearances. So, it is, although they may say no, no, it is always with me, because it's Self, correct? But you don't actually get back the authentication, just pure sense of existence, just me, because you reject the rest of that appearances, but you do not know during that time. Only after anatta, then you realize that this, when you when you hear sound without the background, that experience is exactly the same, the taste is exactly the same as the presence. The I AM Presence. So, only after anatta, when the background is gone, then you realize eh, this has the exact same taste as the I AM experience. When you are not hearing, you are just in the vivid appearances, the obvious appearances now, correct. That experience is also the I AM experience. When you are even now feeling your sensation without the sense of self directly. That experience is exactly the same as I AM taste. It is nondual. Then you realize, I call, actually, everything is Mind. Correct? Everything. So, so before that, there is an ultimate Self, a background, and you reject all those transient appearances. After that, that background is gone, you know? And then you are just all these appearances.
    William Lam: You are the appearance? You are the sound? You are the…
    John Tan: Yes. So, so, that is an experience. That is an experience. So after that, you realize something. What did you realise? You realise all along it is the what, that is obscuring you. So… in a person, for a person that is in I AM experience, the pure presence experience, they will always have a dream. They will say that I hope I can 24 by 7 always in that state, correct? So when I was young, 17. But then after 10 years you are still thinking. Then after 20 years, you say how come I need to always meditate? You always find time to meditate, maybe I don't study also meditate, you give me a cave last time I will just meditate inside.
    So, the the thing that you always dream that you can one day be pure consciousness, just as pure consciousness, live as pure consciousness, but you never get it. And even if you meditate, occasionally probably you can have that oceanic experience. Only when you after anatta, when that self behind is gone, you are not 24 by 7, maybe most of your day, waking state, not so much of 24 by 7, you dream that time still very karmic depending on what you engage, doing business, all these. (John mimics dreaming) How come ah, the business…
    So, so, in normal waking state, you are effortless. Probably that is the, during I AM phase, what you think you are going to achieve, you achieve after the insight of anatta. So you become clear, you are probably in the right path. But there are further insights you have to go through. When you try to penetrate the… one of them is, I feel that I become very physical. I am just narrating, going through my experience. Maybe that time… because you experience the relative, the appearances directly. So everything becomes very physical. So that is how you come to understand the meaning, how concepts actually affect you. Then what exactly is physical? How does the idea of physical come about, correct? That time I still do not know about emptiness, and all these kind of things, to me it is not so important.
    So, I start going into what exactly is physical, what exactly is being physical? Sensation. But why is sensation known as physical, and what is being physical? How did I get the idea of being physical? So, I began to enquire into this thing. That, eh, actually on top of that, there is still further things to deconstruct, that is the meaning… that, just like self, I’m attached to the meaning of self, and you create a construct, it becomes a reification. Same thing, physicality also. So, you deconstruct the concepts surrounding physicality. Correct? So, when you deconstruct that, then I began to realize that all along, we try to understand, even after the experience of let’s say, anatta and all these… when we analyze, and when we think and try to understand something, we are using existing scientific concepts, logic, common day to day logic and all these to understand something. And it is always excluding consciousness. Even if you experience, you can lead a spiritual path you know, but when you think and analyze something, somehow you always exclude consciousness from the equation of understanding something. Your concept is always very materialistic. We always exclude consciousness from the whole equation.” - https://docs.google.com/.../16QGwYIP.../edit
    ATR Meeting 28 October 2020
    DOCS.GOOGLE.COM
    ATR Meeting 28 October 2020
    ATR Meeting 28 October 2020

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  • Peyman ZS
    Soh Wei Yu I have a hard copy, it is very long I have barely dipped into it 😯


  • Peyman ZS
    Soh Wei Yu I didn’t know about ATR meetings!

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