Master Hua on Cultivation

Cultivating virtue, generosity, renunciation, wisdom, energy, patience, truthfulness, resolve, universal love, equanimity, compassion.
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Nicholas
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Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Fri Jul 08, 2016 12:28 am

Source: Some Recorded Sayings of the Venerable Master Hsuan Hua. From Lotuses in the Spring Sun (Chwun-er Lyan-hwa), Taiwan 1995.
In cultivating one must be "free of any particular motives in one's actions." Don't have thoughts of greed. Don't be thinking, "I'd like to have it be this way or that way. I'd like to become enlightened. I'd like to get spiritual powers." How could it be so rapid as this? Take the seeds and plant them down in the soil. Then it's necessary to wait for them to slowly grow forth. When the time arrives, then they will naturally ripen. (p.100)
*****
In cultivating, one must look upon it as one's basic responsibility. It's not necessary to be greedy. After a time then one's merit will naturally become perfectly full and the result of bodhi will be able to be perfected. Originally, it may have been that one should have experienced success, but because of excessive greed, on the contrary, one's unable to even chew it all. When one eats it's necessary to eat one bite at a time. If one takes a whole bowl of rice and stuffs all of it in one's mouth, jamming it into one's mouth so that there's no space in there at all, you tell us, how are you going to eat it? When you go to chew it, you won't even be able to move your mouth! How much the less would you be able to swallow it down. Eating is the simplest of similes. This is what's meant by, "When one's too greedy, one bites off more than he can chew." (p.101)
If you want even more of Bodhisattva Hsuan Hua's teachings, here are some free pdfs:

http://www.buddhisttexts.org/free-dharma-talks.html
Last edited by Nicholas on Fri Jul 15, 2016 11:29 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Fri Jul 08, 2016 12:30 am

People who cultivate the Way need first off to not be selfish. This matter isn't one which should be undertaken solely for the sake of insuring one's own security, but rather it should be out of the need to benefit the entire world. It's necessary to let go of one's self. It's not that one thinks, "In this respect and in that respect I'm really incomparably great!" Rather one must act out of concern for preserving the larger state of affairs. (p.102)
*****
In every single moment, people who cultivate the Way should take the problem of birth and death and hang it right at the level of their eyebrows. In every single moment, one must always be motivated to put an end to birth and gain liberation from death. (p.103)
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Fri Jul 08, 2016 4:25 pm

In every single movement and in every single action the beings of the Saha world act entirely out of greed, entirely out of hatred or entirely out of stupidity. In the methods typical of the world they use greed, hatred and stupidity as they go on about cultivating their conduct. Now in taking up the methods for transcending the world, they still use greed, hatred and stupidity as they go on about cultivating their conduct. In cultivating they become greedily attached to becoming enlightened. They sit in dhyana meditation for two and a half days and figure that they ought to become enlightened then. They cultivate a dharma for two and a half days and figure that they ought to have gotten spiritual powers. They recite the Buddha's name for two and a half days and then figure that they should gain the mindfulness-of-the-buddha samadhi! You just take a look at how huge a mind of greed is involved in this. These are all manifestations of the ghost of the greedy mind. (p.105)
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Sat Jul 09, 2016 4:21 pm

In cultivating the Way, if one is unable to change one's faults, then this is just the same as not cultivating the Way at all. In studying the Buddha Dharma, if one is unable to realize one's own faults and the necessity of change them, then this is just the same as not studying the Buddha Dharma at all. In this connection, there is the so-called, "Having gone through fifty years one then realizes the forty-nine years of faults." If one realizes the points where one has been wrong in what one has practiced and done in the past, anyone who experiences this kind of feeling is a person who possesses wisdom. The road of the future is full of an immeasurable amount of brightness. If on the other hand one does not realize where one has been wrong in the past, this person will remain confused for the rest of his life. One who seeks after an empty reputation is just being confused by the dust of the sense objects. People of this sort are so very pitiable! (p.105)
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by TexasBuddhist » Sun Jul 10, 2016 4:15 pm

Its a daily general practice but one could always use correction in showing you what you're doing wrong.

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Sun Jul 10, 2016 4:27 pm

Those who leave the home life and cultivate the Way must make vows. The making of vows constitutes the vigorous cultivation of the Way. The making of vows serves to alert one to change the bad and bring in the good. If one cultivates the Way and yet does not make vows, then this is the same as a fruit tree bringing forth blossoms and yet producing no fruit. This just doesn't happen. If one has already made vows, then it is best that one make them over again once every day. It is on account of refreshing the old that one realizes the new. One then succeeds in remembering the vows which one has made and in remembering what endeavors one should be engaged in. Then one won't be able to make vows which are only empty vows. One won't be able to cheat oneself while also cheating others. And one won't be able to take those vows which one has made and just forget them. (p.106)
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Tue Jul 12, 2016 7:14 pm

We people are all of the opinion that we are engaged in doing good works. But in reality, it is not certain that they really are good works. Why is this. It is because the seed is not pure. If you employ greedy thoughts in your doing of good works, this is what's known as a case of the seeds being impure. If you use a mind which takes pleasure in supremacy over others in the doing of good works, this too is a case of the seeds being impure. Then what is one to do? One just needs to be "free of any particular motives in one's actions." Whatever we are doing, it's just our basic responsibility. Don't engage in externally-directed seeking. Don't have anything which you are seeking to get out of it. (p.107)
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Wed Jul 13, 2016 6:41 pm

The Dharma-door of Reciting the Buddha’s name works
very directly. You need only to concentrate your mind, and
naturally you will attain the Buddha Recitation Samadhi. There
is no need to further investigate its meaning, or pile a head on
top of a head, looking for business when there’s nothing to do.
Reciting to the point of single-mindedness, when the water fl ows
and the wind blows, all are proclaiming the wonderful Dharma
of the Mahayana. Of the mountains, rivers and great earth, none
are not our self-nature of True Suchness. The Buddha and I have
become one; the Buddha and I were originally not two. When the
point is reached of not reciting and yet reciting, reciting and yet
not reciting, then inside there is no body or mind and outside there
is no world. Empty space is smashed to pieces, the tracks of false
thoughts have vanished. In lucid stillness, the pure original source
appears. Then one attains great ease and comfort, great liberation,
and great calm. One can certify to limitless life and fulfi ll one’s
vows of Bodhi.
Master Hua on Buddha Recitation
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Fri Jul 15, 2016 11:25 pm

In every moment concentrate on the Buddha’s
name, “Namo Amitabha”, without stopping. You recite when
you’re asleep, you recite when you are awake, to the point that this
phrase of the six magical syllables, “Namo Amitabha”, becomes
indestructible. Stretch it out, you can’t snap it; chop at it, you can’t
cut through it; even if you use a sword or knife, you still won’t be
able to break it. Its strength is more solid than that of diamonds.
There is no way you can destroy this “Namo Amitabha”. That is
what’s called the Buddha Recitation Samadhi.

You should recite the Buddha’s name in this way, and you
should recite the Sutras in the same way; you should hold mantras
in this way, too. In doing so, there is no way you will be able to
strike up any false thoughts. Cultivation is not easy.
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:25 pm

Once one has completed a repentance, one must make a vow: "As for all of those things which have gone before it shall be just as if I died yesterday. As for all those things which shall come afterwards, it shall be as if I was just born today." Afterwards one must absolutely not transgress again. If one acts accordingly, then one will be able to cause his offense karma to melt away. (p.109)
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Sat Aug 27, 2016 11:38 pm

Cultivators of the Way, do not cheat yourselves.
It won’t work to plug your ears while stealing a bell.
Barren blossoms cannot bear real fruit.
What a shame to leave precious time pass by vain!
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Wed Aug 02, 2017 6:28 pm

Before you have attained the fruition of sagehood, you must study the Buddhadharma. Before you have realized Buddhahood, you must cultivate. Cultivating means “diligently cultivating precepts, samadhi, and wisdom and putting an end to greed, anger, and delusion.” Every day you must look within and examine your own faults; don’t find fault with others. Don’t be like a mirror that only reflects externals, thinking, “This Bhikshu doesn’t cultivate; that Bhikshuni doesn’t practice either. Who knows what they do from morning to night?” You manage to wash the clothes of the Bhikshus and Bhikshunis until they are sparkling clean, but your own clothes are still dirty. You don’t know how to wash your own dirty laundry. You say, “But I want to practice the Bodhisattva path. I want to help others do their laundry, so I haven’t bothered to do my own.” Well, if you don’t pay attention to your own laundry, you’ll become filthy. You should first wash your own laundry—benefit yourself, and then you can proceed to help others do their laundry—benefit others. But if you only know how to benefit others and forget to benefit yourself, you are rather deluded. People like that are pitiful.
From his commentary on chapter one of the Avatamsaka Sutra
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Fri Aug 04, 2017 6:18 pm

If we wish to return to the source, we must first end our own birth and death. If we don’t end birth and death, we won’t be able to return to the source. If we wish to end birth and death, the very first thing to do is to put an end to thoughts of lust. If we don’t put an end to lust, we won’t be able to end birth and death or get out of the Three Realms.

The Surangama Sutra clearly states, “If one does not get rid of lust, one cannot transcend the world.” To not get rid of lustful thoughts and still wish to realize the Way is like cooking sand hoping to get rice. How could anyone cook sand and expect it to turn into rice? That’s impossible. Not to cast out lustful thoughts and still wish to transcend the Three Realms and end birth and death exemplifies the same principle. That is what the Surangama Sutra says. People who have heard the Surangama Sutra, who have lectured on it, and who have investigated it should pay close attention to this point. Neither monastics nor laypeople should forget this principle.

Why do people have false thoughts? It happens because they have forgotten this very principle. They may pay lip service to it, but subsequent to that they lapse into idle thinking. The Buddha spoke the Dharma to teach us not to indulge in idle thoughts. Without idle thoughts, the darkness is gone, and our thinking clears up and becomes pure. Pure thoughts are the Pure Land. This is the dharma for returning to the source.
From his commentary on chapter one of the Avatamsaka Sutra
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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Re: Master Hua on Cultivation

Post by Nicholas » Mon Aug 19, 2019 3:36 pm

We living beings come into this world and renounce the roots while we grasp at the branches. We forget the fundamental matters, turn our backs on enlightenment and unite with the “dust” – the wearisome mundane world. That is why we forget the Buddhas and never remember to be mindful of them.
From his comments on the Surangama Sutra
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- Buddha

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