COURSING IN THE DEEP PRAJNA PARAMITA"
This line specifies
the Dharma of the Bodhisattva Practice. "Coursing" and
"deep" relate to its quality. At one time, one thousand,
two hundred and fifty-five bhiksus attained ' the four fruits of
the Arhat; they practiced the Dharma of the Small Vehicle which
leads to the end of their birth and death allotment. What is the
birth and death allotment? It means every sentient being's body
is merely a portion, or a part; whether short, long or middle length,
the life of sentient being must end. One round of birth and death
is referred to as allotment. Whoever practices the Dharma of the
Small Vehicle will have the conversion of birth and death even after
he/she has come to the end of the allotment of birth and death.
What is the conversion of birth and death?
thought pattern is the root of our failure to escape to escape from
the cycle of birth and death. One of the recognized features of
thought is to quiver and to move on, and the pattern and its movement
normally neither change nor become suspended as long as there is
consciousness. Every thought has its beginning, its duration and
its end. Due to feelings, perceptions, volitions and consciousness
every thought has its conversion into birth and death. The activity
is never suspended, and thus the conversion of birth and death takes
place, generated by feelings, perceptions, volitions and consciousness.
Every rise and fall of delusive thought marks the conversion of
birth and death. If our Dharma practice does not take us back to
the truth, we are not going to be able to end the conversion of
birth and death and that would hinder us from discerning the Buddha's
point of view. To practice Dharma correctly, one should endeavor
to liberate one's thought from delusion; the attainment and practice
of truth are the means to the attainment of Prajna. Without these,
how can we say we are coursing in the deep Prajnaparamita? To end
the samsaric cycle, but not the conversion of birth and death of
thought is a wisdom that is shallow. The Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara
attained Truth, thereby bringing the two kinds of birth and death
to a complete halt. That is the deep Prajna, the awe-inspiring wisdom:
It is beyond discriminating knowledge, has to be, since discrimination
is one of the manifestations of duality, or birth and death.
a Sanskrit term meaning virtue perfected to the level of transcendence.
In the context of Buddhist practice it means to traverse the sea
of Samsara, or the sea of birth and death, and reach Nirvana. The
words "coursing in the deep Prajnaparamita" attest to
the Bodhisattva's practice of all three kinds of wisdom, i.e., listening,
thinking and practice; thus he attained the radiant wisdom, or the
Ultimate. This paragraph offers description of correct Dharma practice
and its purpose is to provide guidance for the assembly, including
those who have attained partial understanding and insight.