[v] Final Encouragement For Giving Rise To The Bodhi Mind 最后劝发菩提心

[v] Final Encouragement [For] Giving Rise [To The] Bodhi Mind

A3: Conclusion [Of] Treatise (Transmission Section)

—————————┌ 乙一、躬自反省
甲三、结论 (流通分) ┤ 乙二、普劝大众

—————————│ 乙三、苦乐相校
—————————└ 乙四、至再叮咛

B1: Personal Self-Reflections


Thus [with the] ten [causes and] conditions completely understood, [and the] eight Dharma [teachings] well known, then [will our] inclination have [a] door, [and] development have ground.


[With] one another [having] attained this human body, residing in Huáxià [i.e. China, where the Buddha’s Dharma can be learnt well], [with our] six roots without sickness, [with our] four great [elements of the body] tranquil, complete with [the] faithful mind, [we are] fortunately without demonic obstacles.


Moreover, now, myself [and] others also attained leaving [of the] household [life], also [having] received [the] Complete Precepts, also encountering [this] place [for realising the] path, also hearing [the] Buddha’s Dharma, also gazing reverently [at the Buddha’s] śarīra, also cultivating [the] repentance Dharma, also encountering good-[knowing] friends, also complete [with such] supreme conditions, [if] not today giving rise [to] this great [Bodhi] Mind, which day [are we] further waiting [for]?

B2: Universal Exhortation [For The] Great Assembly


[I] only wish [that this] great assembly sympathise [with] my foolish sincerity, [and have] pity [on] my painstaking [efforts and] aspiration. [May we] together establish these vows, [and] together give rise [to] this [Bodhi] Mind. [May] those yet [to] give rise now give rise [to it], those already given rise grow [it, and] those already growing now enable [it to] continue successively.


Do not fear difficulties and retreat [in] fear. Do not regard [this as] easy and [be] frivolous. Do not desire swift [progress] and not [persevere for] long. Do not [be] lazy and without boldness [and] power. Do not [be] dispirited and not rise [with] vigour. Do not continue former habits and further hope [and] wait [for later]. Do not because [of] foolishness [and] dullness, then all along [be] without [the Bodhi] Mind. Do not with roots shallow, then [feel yourself to be] lowly and without [your] part [in Buddhahood].


For example, all kinds [of] trees, planted [for a] long [time already], then [will their] roots shallow, then [with the] days deepen. Also, like sharpening knives, sharpened [for] long, then [will] knives dull then become sharp. How can [we], because [of] shallowness, not plant [trees, and] allow them [to] naturally wither, because [of] dullness, not sharpen [knives, and] set them aside [as] useless?

B3: [With] Suffering [And] Bliss Compared [With] Each Other


Moreover, if with cultivating [of] practices as suffering, [this is] then not knowing [that] laziness [will] especially [cause] suffering. Cultivating [of] practices, [is] then [with] diligent toil [for a] brief period, [leading to] peace [and] bliss [for] eternal kalpas. [With] laziness, then ‘stealing’ ease [for this] one [present] life, [then] receiving suffering [for] many [future] lives.

B4: Sincere Repeated Instructions


Moreover, with [the] Pure Land as [our] ship, why then worry [about] retrogression? Also [having] attained non-birth as forbearance’s power, why then [be] anxious [about] difficulties?


[We] should know [that some] hell-beings [with] transgressions, also gave rise [to the] Bodhi [Mind] in past kalpas. How can [we, as] human Buddhist disciples, not establish great vows in this life [then]?


[With] beginningless confusion, those [in the] past already cannot [be] admonished. Yet, now aware, [for the] future, [we] can still [make] amends.


However, confused [and] yet [to be] awakened, [this is] certainly pitiable. If knowing [this], yet not practising, [this is] especially painful [and] regrettable.


If fearing suffering of [the] hells, then [will] diligence naturally arise. If mindful [of the] swiftness of impermanence, then [will] laziness not arise.


Moreover, [we] must [be] with [the] Buddha’s Dharma as [our] whip [to spur us on, and be with] good[-knowing] friends for guiding [and] supporting [us. In] rashness, not leaving [them, with] lifelong depending [on them], then [will we be] without worry of retrogression [or] loss [of the Bodhi Mind].


Do not say [that] one thought [is of] slight [significance]. Do not speak [of] vows [being] empty [and] without benefit. [With our] minds true, then [will our] practices [be] realised. [With our] vows vast, then [will our] practices [be] profound [i.e. deep]. Empty space [is] not great, [while the] mind’s king is great. Vajra [is] not firm, [while] vows’ power [is the] most firm.


[May this] great assembly truly [be] able [to] not abandon my words. Then [will] Bodhi [and] family members thus [be] related by marriage, [and] lotus societies [be] clans [for] pledging [fellowship], from now on, connecting well [with one another].


[With] that vowed [to] together [be] born [in] Pure Land, together see [A]mitā[bha Buddha [i.e. Āmítuófó], together transform sentient beings, [and] together accomplish Right Awakening, how then do [we] know [that our] future thirty-two forms [and] hundred blessings’ adornments, [do] not from today’s giving rise [to the Bodhi] Mind [to] establish vows, then begins [to form]?


[I] hope, together with [this] great assembly, [we can] encourage one another [on] this. [How] very fortunate [we are, how] very fortunate!

Pure Land Tradition’s 11th Patriarch Great Master Xǐng’ān
Essay [On] Exhortation [To] Give Rise [To The] Bodhi Mind

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

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Complete Text:

Essay On Exhortation To Give Rise To The Bodhi Mind

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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