4p 1 Then Purnamaitreyaniputra arose from his seat in the midst of the
great assembly, uncovered his right shoulder, knelt on his right knee,
put his palms together respectfully, and said to the Buddha, "The most
virtuous and awe-inspiring World Honered One has for the sake of beings
expounded the primary truth of the Thus Come One with remarkable eloquence.
4p 3 "The World Honored One often singles me out as the foremost among speakers of the Dharma. But now when I hear the Thus Come One’s wonderful, subtle expressions of the Dharma, I am like a deaf person who at a distance of more than a hundred paces tries to hear a mosquito, which in fact cannot be seen, let alone heard.
4p 5 "Although the Buddha’s clear expressions have succeeded in dispelling our doubts, we still have not fathomed the ultimate meaning that could enable us to rise above all delusions. Those who are like Ananda, although enlightened, have not yet ended their outflows of their habits.
4p 6 "Those of us present in the assembly who have reached the stage of no outflows, despite having ended our outflows, still wonder about the Dharma spoken by the Thus Come One today.
4p 7 "World Honored One, if all the mundane sense organs, sense objects, skandhas, places, and realms are the Treasury of the Thus Come One, why, in that fundamental purity, do the mountains, rivers, great earth and all other conditioned phenomena suddenly arise, cyclically change and flow, end, and then begin again?
4p 7-8 "Moreover, the Thus Come One said that the basic natures of earth, water, fire, and wind are perfectly fused, pervade the Dharma Realm, and are tranquil and eternal.
4p 8 "World Honored One, if the nature of earth is pervasive, how could it contain water? If the nature of water is pervasive, fire would not arise. Further, how do you explain that the natures of fire and water can each pervade empty space without displacing one another? World Honored One, the nature of earth is solid; the nature of emptiness is vacuous. How can they both pervade the Dharma Realm? I don’t know what this doctrine is aiming at.
4p 9-10 "I only hope the Thus Come One will compassionately explain in order to clear the clouds of confusion that engulf all of us in this great assembly." After saying that, he made a full prostration and respectfully and expectantly awaited the Thus Come One’s unsurpassed compassionate instruction.
4p 10-11 The World Honored One then told Purna and all the Arhats in the assembly who had ended their outflows and had reached the level beyond study, "Today the Thus Come One will explain in depth the truest most supreme meaning. May those of you in the assembly who are Hearers or Arhats of a fixed nature who have not yet realized the two kinds of emptiness and all who are dedicated to the Superior Vehicle reach the tranquility of the One Vehicle, the true aranya, the proper place of cultivation. Listen attentively and I will explain it for you." Purna and the others listened quietly, respecting the Buddha’s expression of Dharma.
4p 13 The Buddha said, "Purna, you have asked why in fundamental purity the mountains, the rivers, and the great earth suddenly arise.
4p 14 "Have you not often heard the Thus Come One expound upon the wonderful light of the enlightened nature and the bright wonder of fundamental enlightenment?"
Purna said, "Yes, World Honored One, I have often heard the Buddha expound upon that subject."
4p 15 The Buddha said, "You speak of understanding enlightenment; does the nature understand and is that called enlightenment? Or does enlightenment initially lack understanding and so you speak of understanding enlightenment?"
4p 15 Purna said, "If a lack of understanding is called enlightenment, then there would be no understanding at all."
4p 16 The Buddha said, "If there were no understanding at all, then there could be no understanding of enlightenment. If understanding is added, then that is not enlightenment. If understanding is not added, then there’s no understanding. But a lack of understanding or ignorance is not the lucid bright nature of enlightenment.
4p 17 "The nature of enlightenment certainly includes understanding. It’s redundant to speak of understanding enlightenment.
4p 17 "Enlightenment is not a kind of understanding. Understanding sets up an objective realm. Once that objective realm is set up, your false subjective state arises.
4p 19 "Where there was neither sameness nor difference, suddenly difference appears. What differs from that difference, becomes sameness. Once sameness and difference mutually arise, and due to them, what is neither the same nor different is created.
4p 20 "This turmoil eventually brings about weariness. Prolonged weariness produces defilement. The combination of these in a murky turbidity creates afflictions with respect to wearisome defilements.
4p 21 "The world comes about through this arising; the lack of any arising becomes emptiness. Emptiness is sameness; the world, difference. Those that have neither difference nor sameness become conditioned dharmas.
4p 22 "The understanding added to enlightenment creates a light that stands in mutual opposition with the darkness of emptiness. As a result, wind wheels that support the world come into being.
4p 23 "The tension between emptiness and that light creates movement. The false, persistent light congeals into a solidity that becomes metal. A lack of enlightenment nurtures that persistence and causes metal wheels to secure all lands.
4p 24 "That tenacious unenlightened state creates metal, while the fluctuations of light cause the wind to rise. The friction between wind and metal creates fire, which is mutable in nature.
4p 24 "Metal produces moisture, which causes flame to rise from the fire. Thus the wheel of water that encompasses all realms in the ten directions comes about.
4p 25 "Fire rises and water falls, and the combination becomes tenacious. What is wet becomes the oceans and seas; what is dry becomes the continents and islands.
4p 25 "Because of this, fire often rises up in the oceans, and on the continents the streams and rivers ever flow.
4p 26 "When the power of water is less then that of fire, high mountains result. That is why mountain rocks give off sparks when struck, and become liquid when melted.
4p 26 "When the power of earth is less then that of water, the outcome is grasses and trees. That is why the vegetation in groves and marshes turns to ashes when burned and oozes water when twisted.
4p 27 "The interaction of that false dichotomy in turn creates these elements as seeds and from these causes and conditions comes the continuity of the world.
4p 27 "Moreover, Purna, the false understanding is none other than the mistake of adding understanding to enlightenment.
4p 28 "After the falseness of the objective realm is established, the subjective understanding cannot transcend it. Due to that, hearing does not go beyond sound, and seeing does not surpass form.
4p 28 "Forms, smells, tastes, objects of touch and the others of the six falsenesses are realized. Because of them there is a division into seeing, sensation, hearing, and knowing.
4p 29 "Similar karma binds beings together; union and separation bring about their transformations.
4p 29-30 "The manifastation of light is caused by false view and ignorance. Competitive views generate hatred; compatible views create love. The flow of love becomes a seed; the potential foetus is taken in and conception occurs. When intercourse takes place, beings with similar karma are drawn in. From these causes and conditions, the kalaka, arbuda, and other foetal stages evolve.
4p 36 "The womb-born, egg-born, moisture-born, and transformation-born beings come about in response: the egg-born come from thought, the womb-born are due to emotion, the moisture-born arise from union, and transformations occur through separation.
4p 37 "Emotion, thought, union, and separation go through further changes, and the maturation of such karma causes one to rise or sink. From such causes and conditions comes the continuity of beings.
4p 38 "Purna, thought and love become bound together so that people love each other and cannot bear to be apart. As a result, ceaseless successive births of parents, children, and grandchildren occur in this world. And the basis for all that is desire and greed.
4p 38-39 "Greed and emotional love feed on one another until the greed becomes insatiable. The result of that in this world is the tendency of egg-born, womb-born, moisture-born, and transformation-born beings to devour one another to the extent that their strength permits. The basis for all that is killing and greed.
4p 40 "Suppose a person eats a sheep. The sheep dies and becomes a person; the person dies and becomes a sheep, The same applies in all rebirths among the ten categories. Through death after death and birth after birth, they eat each other. The evil karma one is born with continues to the bounds of the future. The basis for all that is stealing and greed.
4p 42 "‘You owe me a life; I must repay my debt to you.’ Due to such causes and conditions we pass through hundreds of thousands of eons in sustained cycle of birth and death.
4p 43 "‘You love my mind; I adore your good looks.’ Due to such causes and conditions we pass through hundreds of thousands of eons in sustained mutual entanglement.
4p 44 "Killing, stealing, and lust are the basic roots. From such causes and conditions comes the continuity of karma and retribution.
4p 44-45 "Purna, these three kinds of upside-down continuity come from adding understanding to enlightenment. That lack of understanding generates an internal awareness which gives rise to external phenomena. Both are born of false views. From this falseness the mountains, the rivers, the great earth, and all conditioned phenomena unfold themselves in a succession that recurs in endless cycles."
4p 49 Purna said, "If this wonderful enlightenment, the wonderful awareness of fundamental enlightenment, which is neither greater than nor less than the mind of the Thus Come One, abruptly brings forth the mountains, the rivers, and the great earth, and all conditioned phenomena, then now that the Thus Come One has attained the wonderful emptiness of clear enlightenment, will the mountains, the rivers, the great earth, and all conditioned habitual outflows arise ever again?"
4p 51 The Buddha said to Purna, "If a person living in a village were confused about directions, mistaking south for north, would that confusion be the result of confusion or of awareness?"
Purna said, "His confusion would be the result of neither. Why not? Confusion is fundamentally baseless, so how could anything arise because of it? And as awareness does not produce confusion, how could confusion arise out of it?"
4p 52 The Buddha said, "If someone who knows the directions points them out to the confused person, then once the person who was confused becomes aware, do you suppose, Purna, that he could lose his sense of direction again in that village?"
"No, World Honored One."
4p 54 "Purna, the Thus Come Ones of the ten directions are the same way.
Confusion is groundless and ultimately empty in nature. In the past, there basically was no confusion. It merely seemed as if there were confusion and enlightenment. When the delusion about confusion and enlightenment is ended, enlightenment will not give rise to confusion.
4p 55-56 "Consider the person who, because of cataracts, saw flowers in space. Once the cataracts were removed, the flowers in space disappeared. Were he to rush to the spot where the flowers disappeared and wait for them to reappear, would you consider that person to be stupid or wise?"
4p 56 Purna said, "Originally there weren’t any flowers in space. It was through a seeing disability that they appeared and disappeared. To see the disappearance of the flowers in space is already a distortion. To wait for them to reappear is sheer madness. Why bother to determine further if such a person is stupid or wise?"
4p 57 The Buddha said, "Since you explain it that way, why do you ask if the clear emptiness of wonderful enlightenment can once again give rise to the mountains, the rivers, and the great earth?
4p 59 "Consider a piece of ore containing gold and other metals mixed together. Once the pure gold is extracted it will never become ore again. Consider wood that has burnt to ashes; it will never become wood again. 4p 4p 59 "The Bodhi and Nirvana of all Buddhas, the Thus Come Ones, are the same way.
4p 60 "Purna, you also asked whether the natures of water and fire would not destroy each other if the natures of earth, water, fire, and wind were all perfectly fused and pervaded the Dharma Realm, and whether space and the great earth would not be incompatible if both pervaded the Dharma Realm.
4p 61 "Purna, consider space: its substance is not the various phenomena, yet that does not prevent all phenomena from being included within it.
4p 62 "How do we know that? Purna, empty space is bright on a sunny day, and dark when the sky is cloudy. It moves when the wind rises, it is fresh when the sky clears. It is turbid and hazy when the weather is foul, it is obscure when a dust storm breaks out. It casts a bright reflection on a pool of clear water.
4p 62-63 "Do you think these conditioned phenomena come into existence at different places? Are they created from these conditions themselves or is their origin in space. If they arise from these conditions, Purna, then on a sunny day, since the sun is bright, all worlds of the ten directions should take on the form of the sun. Then why, on a sunny day do we see the round sun in the sky? If space is bright, space itself should shine. Then why, when there is a covering of clouds and fog, is no light evident?
4p 63-64 "You should know that the brightness is not the sun, nor space nor other than the space or the sun.
4p 64 (Out of order on purpose-see commentary.) "The truly wonderful enlightened brightness is the same way. You recognize space, and space appears. Recognizing earth, water, fire, and wind, each will appear. If all are recognized, all will appear.
4p 65 "How can they all appear? Purna, consider the sun’s reflection as it appears in a single body of water. Two people gaze at it, both at the same time. Then one person walks east and the other walks west. Each person, still looking at the water will see a sun go along with him, one to the east, one to the west, while there seems to be no fixed direction for the movement of the sun’s reflection.
4p 65-66 "Don’t belabor the question and ask, ‘If there is one sun, how can it follow both people? Or if the sun is double, why does only one appear in the sky?’ This is just revolving in falseness, because such things cannot be proven.
4p 66 (Out of order on purpose-see commentary.) "Contemplate how phenomena are ultimately false and cannot be verified. They are like flowers conjured up in space that cannot bear fruit. Why, then, investigate how such phenomena appear and disappear?
4p 67 (Out of order on purpose-see commentary.) "Contemplate how the nature is ultimately truth and is solely the wonderful enlightened brightness. That wonderful enlightened bright mind originally was neither water nor fire. Why, then, ask about incompatibility?
4p 67-68 "Purna, you think that form and emptiness overcome and destroy one another in the Treasury of the Thus Come One. Thus the Treasury of the Thus Come One appears to you as form and emptiness throughout the Dharma Realm.
4p 68 "And so, within it the wind moves, emptiness is still, the sun is bright, and the clouds are dark. The reason for this lies in the delusion of beings who have turned their backs on enlightenment and joined with the defiling dust. Thus, the wearisome defilements come into being and mundane phenomena exist.
4p 69 "Based on wonderful understanding that neither ceases to be nor comes into being, I unite with the Treasury of the Thus Come One. Thus the Treasury of the Thus Come One is the unique and wonderful enlightened brightness which completely illumines the Dharma Realm.
4p 70 "That is why, within it, the one is limitless; the limitless is one. In the small appears the great; in the great appears the small.
4p 70-71 "Unmoving in the Bodhimanda, yet pervading the ten directions, my body contains the ten directions and endless emptiness. On the tip of a single hair appear the lands of the Jewelled Kings. Sitting in a mote of dust, I turn the great Dharma wheel, put an end to defiling dust, and unite with enlightenment, so that true suchness, the wonderful enlightened bright nature, comes into being.
4p 73 "The Treasury of the Thus Come One is the fundamental, wonderful, perfect mind.
4p 73 "It is not the mind, nor emptiness, nor earth, nor water, nor wind, nor fire; it is not the eyes, nor the ears, the nose, the tongue, the body, or the mind. It is not form, nor sounds, smells, tastes, objects of touch, or dharmas. It is not the realm of eye-consciousness, nor any other, up to and including the realm of mind-consciousness.
4p 74 "It is not understanding, nor ignorance, nor the ending of understanding or ignorance, nor any other, up to and including old age and death and the ending of old age and death.
4p 77 "It is not suffering, nor accumulation, nor extinction, nor the Way. It is neither knowing nor attaining.
4p 83 "It is not Dana, nor Shila, nor Virya, nor Kshanti, nor Dhyana, nor Prajna, nor Paramita,
4p 85 "nor any other: It is not the Tathagata, nor the Arhats, nor Samyaksambodhi, nor Parinirvana, nor Eternity, nor Bliss, nor True Self, nor Purity.
4p 86 "Therefore, it is neither mundane nor transcendental, since the Treasury of the Thus Come One is the wonder of the mind’s primal understanding.
4p 87 "It is the mind; it is emptiness, it is earth; it is water; it is wind; it is fire;
it is the eyes; it is the ears; the nose, the tongue, the body, and the mind. It is form; it is sounds; smells, tastes, objects of touch, and dharmas. It is the realm of eye-consciousness, and so forth, up to and including the realm of mind-consciousness.
4p 88 "It is understanding and ignorance and the ending of understanding and ignorance, and so forth up to and including old age and death and the ending of old age and death. It is suffering; it is accumulation; it is extinction; and it is the Way. It is knowing and attaining. It is Dana; it is Shila; it is Virya; it is Kshanti; it is Dhyana; it is Prajna; and it is Paramita,
and so forth, up to and including the Tathagata, the Arhats, Samyaksambodhi, Parinirvana, Eternity, Bliss, True Self, and Purity.
4p 89 "It is both mundane and transcendental, since the Treasury of the Thus Come One is the wonderful understanding of the primal mind.
4p 90 "It is apart from identity and negation. It is identity and negation.
4p 90 "How can beings in the three realms of mundane existence and the Hearers and Those Enlightened to Conditions at the level of transcendental existence make suppositions about the unsurpassed Bodhi of the Thus Come One with the minds that they know of, or enter the knowledge and vision of the Buddha through the medium of worldly language?
4p 91 "Consider lutes, flutes, and guitars. Although those can make wonderful sounds, but if there are no skilled fingers to play them, their music will never come forth.
4p 92 "You and all beings are the same way. The precious, enlightened true mind is perfect in everyone. I apply pressure and the Ocean Impression emits light; you move your mind, and the wearisome defilements spring up.
4p 93 "That happens all because you do not diligently seek the unsurpassed enlightened Way, but are fond of the lesser vehicle and are satisfied with little attainment."
4p 96-97 Purna said, "My mind and the Thus Come One’s true wonderful pure mind are no different in their perfect precious enlightenment and complete understanding. But I have long been plagued with beginningless false thoughts and have long endured the cycle of rebirth. As of yet my attainment in the sagely vehicle is not ultimate. The World Honored One has completely ended all falseness and attained wonderful eternal truth.
4p 97-98 "I venture to ask the Thus Come One why all beings exist in falseness and conceal their own wonderful understanding, so that they keep drowning in this deluge?"
4p 98 The Buddha said to Purna, "Although you have cast off doubts, you still have not ended residual delusions. I will now question you about a mundane event.
4p 99 "Did you hear about Yajnadatta from Shravasti who on impulse one morning held a mirror to his face and fell in love with the head in the mirror? He gazed at the eyes and eyebrows but got angry because he could not see his own face. He decided he must be a mountain or river sprite, lost control, and ran madly about. What do you think? Why did this person set out on a mad cause for no reason?"
Purna said, "That person was insane. There’s no other reason."
4p 101 The Buddha said, "What reason can you give for saying that the wonderful enlightened bright perfection, the fundamentally perfect bright wonder is false? If there is a reason, then how do you define false?
4p 102 "All of your own false thinking becomes in turn the cause for more. From confusion you accumulate confusion through eon after eon; although the Buddha is aware of it, he cannot counteract it.
4p 104 "From such confused causes, the cause of confusion perpetuates itself. When one realizes that confusion has no cause, the falseness becomes baseless. Since it never arose, why would you hope for its end? One who obtains Bodhi is like a person who awakens to tell of the events in a dream; since his mind will remain awake and clear, why would he want to hold onto the things in a dream?
4p 105 "This is especially true for things that lack a cause and are basically non-existent, such as Yajnadatta’s situation that day in the city. Was there any reason why he became fearful for his head and went running about? If his madness had suddenly ceased, he still wouldn’t get his head back from someplace else outside; and so before his madness ceased, how could his head have been lost?
4p 106 "Purna, falseness is the same way. How can it exist?
4p 107 "You only need not follow discriminations about the three kinds of continuity of the world, beings, and karmic retributions. By cutting off those three conditions, the causes will not arise.
4p 107-08 "Then the madness, like Yajnadatta’s, will cease by itself. Once it ceases, Bodhi appears. The supreme, pure, bright mind originally pervades the Dharma Realm. It is not something obtained from anyone else. Why, then, toil at cultivation making yourself bone-tired trying to gain certification?
4p 109 "Consider a person who has a wish-fulfilling pearl sewn into his clothing but does not know it. Poverty-stricken and ragged, he roams around begging for food and always on the move. Although he is indeed destitute, the pearl is never lost.
4p 111 "Suddenly a wise person points out the pearl: then all his wishes are fulfilled, he obtains great wealth, and he realizes that the pearl did not come from somewhere outside."
4p 112 Then from among the great assembly, Ananda bowed at the Buddha’s feet, stood, and said to the Buddha, "The World Honored One has just explained about the karma of killing, stealing and lust: when the three conditions are cut off, the three causes do not arise. Then the madness, like Yajnadatta’s, will cease by itself, and once it ceases, Bodhi appears. It is not something obtained from anyone else. Those clearly are causes and conditions; why, then, does the Thus Come One abruptly reject causes and conditions?
4p 113 "My enlightenments have come about through causes and conditions. World Honored One, that is not only true of those of us who are young in years, or who are Hearers still in the process of learning. Mahamaudgalyayana, Shariputra, and Subhuti, and others who followed the elder Brahmans, became enlightened and obtained no outflows upon hearing the Buddha expound upon causes and conditions.
4p 114 "Now you say that Bodhi does not come from causes and conditions. That would make the spontaneity that Maskari Goshaliputra and others advocated in Rajagriha the primary meaning! I only hope that the Greatly Kind One will dispel my confusion."
4p 115 The Buddha said to Ananda, "Let us take the case of Yajnadatta in the city: if the causes and conditions of his madness cease, the nature that is not mad will spontaneously come forth. The entire principle of spontaneity and causes and conditions is nothing more than that.
4p 116 "Ananda, Yajnadatta’s head was naturally there; it was a natural part of him. There was never a time when it was not. Why, then, did he suddenly fear that he had no head and start running about madly?
4p 116-17 "If he naturally had a head and went mad due to causes and conditions, would it not be just as natural for him to lose his head due to causes and conditions?
4p 117-18 "Basically his head was never lost. The madness and fear arose from falseness. There was never any change that took place. Why, then, belabor the point about causes and conditions?
4p 118 "Had the madness been his natural state, the madness and fear would be fundamental. Before he went mad, then, where was his madness hidden?
4p 118 "Had the madness not been his natural state, and his head in fact not lost, why did he run about in a state of madness?
4p 118 "If you realize that you have a head and recognize the madness of your pursuit, then both spontaneity and causes and conditions become idle theories. That is why I say that once the three conditions cease to be, the Bodhi mind appears.
4p 119 "The arising of the Bodhi mind and the ending of the mind subject to arising and ceasing itself imply arising and ceasing.
4p 119-20 "The ending of both arising and ceasing is the effortless Way. If there is spontaneity then clearly the thought of spontaneity must arise and the mind subject to arising and ceasing end: but that is still a case of arising and ceasing.
4p 120 "To call the lack of arising and ceasing spontaneity would be like saying that a combination of mundane phenomena that form a single substance are mixed and united in nature, and that everything not mixed and united is spontaneous in nature.
4p 121 "Spontaneity is not natural, and mixing and uniting lack unifying qualities. Spontaneity and unity alike must be abandoned, and both their abandonment and their existence cease to be. Achieving that would be no idle theory.
4p 122 "Bodhi and Nirvana are still so far away that you must undoubtedly pass through eons of bitterness and diligence before you cultivate them and are certified.
4p 122 "You can memorize the twelve divisions of the Sutras spoken by the Buddhas of the ten directions and their pure, wonderful principles as many as the sands of the Ganges river, but that only aids your idle theorizing.
4p 123 "Although you can discuss causes and conditions and spontaneity and understand them perfectly clearly, and people refer to you as the one foremost in learning, still, the eons upon eons you have spent saturating yourself with learning, did not help you avoid the trouble with Matangi’s daughter.
4p 125 "Why did you have to wait for me to use the spiritual mantra of the Buddha’s Crown to put out the fire of lust in Matangi’s daughter’s heart, causing her to attain the position of an Anagamin and join a vigorous group in my Dharma assembly, drying up the river of emotional love in her and setting you free?
4p 128 "Therefore, Ananda, your ability to intellectually master the Thus Come One’s wonderful secret teachings for eons upon eons is not as good as a single day of non-outflow cultivation that is intent upon quitting the two worldly sufferings of love and hate.
4p 129-30 "In Matangi’s daughter, a former prostitute, emotional love and desire were dispelled by the spiritual power of the mantra. Now her Dharma name is Bhikshuni Nature.
4p 130-31 "She and Rahula’s mother, Yashodhara, both became aware of their past causes and knew that for several eons they had endured the suffering of greed and emotional love. Due to their single-mindedness they became permeated with the cultivation of non-outflow goodness, they were both freed from their bonds and received predictions. Why, then, do you cheat yourself and still remain caught up in looking and listening?"
4p 132 When Ananda and the great assembly heard the Buddha’s instruction, their doubts and delusions were dispelled. Their minds awakened to the ultimate reality, they experienced both physical and mental light ease, and unprecedented attainments.
4p 133 Once again Ananda wept, bowed at the Buddha’s feet, knelt, placed his palms together, and said to the Buddha, "The Unsurpassed, Great, Compassionate, Pure, and Precious King has instructed me well, so that, by means of these various causes and conditions, expedients and encouragements, all of us who were immersed in the sea of suffering have escaped it.