Heart Sutra Day 17 – Leaving behind upside-down pointless dreams

Because this mind has no hindrances,
there is no fear.
Upside-down pointless dreams are
left behind,
and inherent,
eternally bright
supreme enlightenment
is attained.

마음에 걸림이 없는 고로 두려움이 없으며
뒤바뀐 헛된 꿈 같은 생각을 떠나서
본래부터 영원한 밝음의 구경에 이르렀나니라.

I love the expression, “leaving behind upside-down, pointless dreams”! That’s so vivid! Again, it’s not necessary to understand all aspects of these verses, just try to recite them a few times every days whenever you remember.

The goal here is to input these within you. As you do this, it’s like teaching the lives within you, and even though “you” don’t fully understand something, other parts of you will absorb the different nuances and be pointed in the right direction. Also, later when you are ready or really need this guidance, the words of the verse will pop into your consciousness.

Heart Sutra Day 16 – The one mind of a free person

Even though the celebrations had to be scaled down, there were still lanterns for the Buddha’s Birthday!

The one mind of a free person
circulates deep in the realm of nothingness,
free of all hindrances.

자유인의 한마음은
깊은 무無의 세계에 회전하며
일체 걸림이 없느니라.

I’m not sure what really needs to be said about this verse. In truth, it reminds me a bit of a similar verse from “Faith in Mind,” although there are likely issues of depth:

The Great Way is not difficult
for those who do not pick and choose.
When preferences are cast aside,
the Way stands clear and undisguised.

That said, getting caught up in such comparisons probably isn’t *quite* in tune with the spirit of either, lol. But, to put it another way, when you entrust everything to your foundation, you are free, or have at least started down that path. True freedom would also involve the ability to respond as needed, but freedom from being twisted about and shaken by the events and mental states of life would sure be a great start!

Heart Sutra Day 15 – In every instant all things are ceaselessly changing and manifesting

Could you squeeze a mountain into a 150cm container? No. But because we often don’t know better, we look at that container and think that’s all there is, that everything is inside there.

There is nothing to attain
because nothing is fixed and unchanging.
In every instant
all things are ceaselessly
changing and manifesting.

없는 까닭은
일체 고정된 것이 없이
화化하여 찰나찰나 나투는 까닭이니라.

Heart Sutra Day 14 – Neither wisdom or enlightenment to attain

The key phrase here is “attain,” because among other things, it means adding something. The problem is not just the idea that something was lacking, but that there were two separate states or things existing apart from each other. (Tomorrow’s verse will clarify this a bit.)

Nor is there wisdom
or enlightenment to attain.

지혜도, 깨달음도 얻을 바가 없으니

Buddha’s Birthday Dharma talk

A scene from the wood backdrop in the Dharma Hall at the Gwangmyeong branch

Happy Buddha’s Birthday! I hope you are all having a great day. Here’s a Dharma talk given by Daehaeng Kun Sunim several years ago on Buddha’s Birthday. It’s fairly deep, so take your time and let it soak in. Just take one piece that clicks with you and work at diligently applying that. Seriously. Application of only one small part will lead to the other parts opening up, but understanding without application will only fade. So focus on just one thing and put that into practice!

Dharma talk on Buddha’s Birthday

The Buddha’s mind is so vast and vast, so deep and deep,
through its blossoming, through its fragrance,
it’s given us everything.

This flower of mind is unimaginably subtle and profound
And can cover the entire universe.
For this flower is the flower of your Buddha-nature.
Your Buddha-nature exists throughout the world, in every part of the world,
this foundation is your true nature, One Mind.
In this Dharma net, where everything is connected to each other thing,
if we firmly grip the light of our true nature, the one that’s doing everything,
then as we go through life, we give light to all the beings around us,
and can know the mind of all.

An entire country is just one family living under the same roof.
All people in the world are living together in the same barrel,
sharing the same fate.
In essence, all beings are sharing the same mind and the same body.
Don’t get caught up in thinking that some things are large and important,
and others small and trivial.
In front of your foundation, Juingong, they are exactly the same,
both are equally responsive to the thoughts we entrust to our foundation.

Thus, it’s possible to take care of any of the problems that are arising in the world,
they can all be controlled and managed.
This practice that allows us to change things for the better
is precisely what the Buddha taught.
Even in unseen realms, there is consciousness and life,
in seen realms as well, there is consciousness and life,
so thoroughly know both sides and spend each day brightly.
Through this eternal, ever-present brightness,
beings of this middle realm have to raise themselves to higher realms.
Do not allow yourself to slip into lower realms.
The lanterns we’re lighting here today don’t give light for just this one day.
If we can keep the light within us bright,
then today becomes not just celebration of the Buddha’s birthday,
today becomes eternal.

Heart Sutra Day 11 – That which dies that which doesn’t die are not separate things

The photos this week are from this years memorial service for Daehaeng Kun Sunim. “Why,” some might ask, “would you hold memorial services if the verse below was true?” There are probably many, many good reasons, but one is just that it’s good for us to show our gratitude. Until we truly and fully awaken for ourselves, expressing gratitude, giving offerings, and helping others are all things that help us overcome eons of self-centered habits. In moving outside of my own desires for comfort and such, they help remind me of my greater connection with others and the whole.
Who wouldn’t be helped by this?

That which dies
that which doesn’t die
are also not separate
and so do not exist.

죽지 않는 것도 죽는 것도 또한 둘이 아닌 고로 없으며

Heart Sutra Day 10 – Even the visible world and the realm of consciousness are always changing

Even the visible world and the realm of consciousness
are always changing.

보이는 세계와 의식세계까지도 따로 고정됨이 없느니라.

What does this mean? I’m certain it has layers beyond imagining, so if you think you understand, great, but don’t cling too tightly to that understanding! Even that too, needs to be put down so that you can move beyond it.