Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior – Shantideva
translated from the Tibetan, as clarified by the Sanskrit
by Alexander Berzin, 2004
Introductory Note on the Translation
The Diversity of Textual Versions and Editions
Translation Method for Resolving Discrepancies between Tibetan and Sanskrit
1. The Benefits of Bodhichitta
2. Openly Admitting Previous Negative Acts
3. Gaining Hold of a Bodhichitta Aim
4. Taking Care (about Bodhichitta)
5. Safeguarding with Alertness
6. Showing Patience
7. Joyful Perseverance
8. Far-Reaching Mental Stability
9. Far-Reaching Discriminating Awareness
Introductory Note on the Translation, The Diversity of Textual Versions and Editions
The translation of Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior (sPyod-‘jug, Skt. Bodhisattvacarya-avatara) by Shantideva presents many textual problems. Written in Sanskrit during the first half of the eighth century C. E., several versions of the manuscript have passed down through the centuries. The Nepalese-German Manuscript Cataloguing Project, for example, has microfilmed forty-one handwritten manuscripts, of varying lengths. As far as I know, a comparative study has yet to be made on them.
A Tibetan translation of a Sanskrit recension, which may or may not be the same as any of the above-mentioned forty-one, has recently been discovered among the manuscripts buried at Dunhuang at the end of the tenth century. It contains 210 ½ less number of verses than the Tibetan canonical version.
According to the colophon of the Tibetan canonical version, the text was first translated into Tibetan in the early ninth century, during the Old Translation Period, based on a Kashmiri manuscript. The translators were the Indian master Sarvajna-deva and the Tibetan editor-translator monk Peltseg (dPal-brtsegs). Peltseg was one of the compilers of The Grand (Lexicon) for Understanding Specific (Terms) (Bye-brag-tu rtogs-par byed-pa chen-po, Skt. Mahavyutpatti), the first compendium of standardized Tibetan translation terms for Buddhist technical terms in Sanskrit.
The text was retranslated from a Magadha edition and commentary during the first half of eleventh century by the Indian master Dharma-shribhadra and the Tibetan editor-translator monks Rinchen-zangpo (Rin-chen bzang-po) (958 – 1051) and Shakya-lodro (Shakya blo-gros). It is not clear which commentary this was. Rinchen-zangpo was the founder of the New Translation Period in Tibet.
The text was further corrected, retranslated, and finalized by the learned Indian master Sumati-kirti and the editor-translator monk Loden-sherab (Blo-ldan shes-rab) (1059 – 1109). This is the version preserved in the Tibetan canon, although various editions of the canon and of later publications of the Tibetan text have a number of textual discrepancies. The two earlier versions of the Tibetan translation have not survived, as far as I know.
According to the main compiler of the Tibetan canon, Buton (Bu-ston Rin-chen grub) (1290 – 1364), a hundred commentaries were written in Sanskrit to Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior, but only eight were translated into Tibetan. The most well known one, perhaps because of the twentieth-century publication of the Sanskrit original, is Commentary on the Difficult Points of Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior (sPyod-‘jug dka’-‘grel, Skt. Bodhisattvacarya-avatara-panjika). It was written by Prajnakaramati, in the eleventh century, and comments only on the first nine chapters of the root text.
Sumati-kirti, the Indian pandit who helped with the Tibetan translation of the root text used for the canonical version, translated chapters 1, 2, 7, 8, and 9 of Prajnakaramati’s commentary into Tibetan together with the Tibetan translator Darma-drag (Dar-ma grags). The in-between chapters were translated by the Tibetan Lodro-zangdrag (Blo-gros bzang-grags). Thus, it is quite likely that the Sanskrit version used for the translation of the first nine chapters of the root text was the same as that which appears in Prajnakaramati’s commentary. Taking into consideration that there are several slightly different manuscript versions of this edition of the Sanskrit root text and commentary, there are still quite a number of discrepancies between the Sanskrit original and the Tibetan translation of the root text. The same is true concerning the published Sanskrit and canonical Tibetan versions of the tenth chapter, missing in Prajnakaramati’s work.
Many Tibetan masters from the four traditions of Tibetan Buddhism have written commentaries on the root text, based on the canonical version. Several of them were aware of the textual discrepancies and made occasional reference to different readings of some of the root verses as found in the Tibetan translations of the Sanskrit commentaries. Moreover, these Tibetan commentaries present a wide range of interpretation of the root verses.
The only conclusion that we can safely draw from the above sketch is that it is impossible, at present, to decide what is the authentic version of the text and what was its original or “actual” meaning. All of the versions and their commentaries make sense within the context of Buddha’s teachings. This accords with the principle that the enlightening words of a Buddha contain many levels of meaning and each disciple will understand them according to his or her stage of progress.
Faced with this situation, how best to translate the text into modern languages? Many English translations of Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior have already been made, some from the Sanskrit version that appears with the Prajnakaramati commentary, plus the tenth chapter omitted there, and some from the Tibetan canonical translation. One of English works has even presented translations of both the Sanskrit and Tibetan versions for verses that significantly differ from each other. None, however, has attempted to reconcile discrepancies between the two that may have arisen simply due to scribe’s errors or differences in the structures of the two languages. This has been the challenge attempted here.
Moreover, some translations have favored accuracy over poetics, and others have sacrificed accuracy for the sake of poetic beauty. Here, I have attempted to preserve the two.
Translation Method for Resolving Discrepancies between Tibetan and Sanskrit
I have received discourses on Shantideva’s text twice from His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama and twice from Geshe Ngawang Dhargyey. When His Holiness teaches the text, he often corrects the canonical Tibetan translation based on explanations he received from Khunu Lama Rinpoche Tenzin Gyeltsen, a great master well versed in Sanskrit. Moreover, His Holiness’s explanations always emphasize that the text is meant for meditation and everyday practice. Therefore, textual corrections need to be made based not only on what accords with Sanskrit grammar, but also on what accords more closely with practical advice on bodhisattva behavior. I have based the present translation on this precedent and this principle. Accordingly, I have followed primarily the canonical Tibetan version, but amended it, when necessary, according to the Sanskrit version that appears in the Prajnakaramati commentary, plus the published tenth chapter.
To say that the text is meant for use in meditation means that the whole or selected parts are to be read or recited from memory each day, aloud or silently, and reflected upon. This implies that the verses all connect with each other to form a flowing presentation of the various topics. The text does not consist of disjointed verses. Preservation of the flow of presentation or argument, then, is one of the main criteria I have used for establishing the context within which each verse needs to fit. I have therefore tried, as much as possible, to preserve the flow by adding conjunctions and so on, in parentheses, to help make the connections clearer.
Some of the differences in the Tibetan and Sanskrit versions may have arisen due to the Tibetan having been based on a slightly different Sanskrit manuscript version than the one that is currently available in published form. In such cases, I have followed the Tibetan version, so long as it fits in the context of the flow. It would be awkward to try to translate and incorporate both language versions into one text for lines that are totally different, and also there is no clear way to decide which version is more authentic.
Some of the discrepancies are due to a difference of one letter in a word, such as AkAra (appearance) in Sanskrit and the Tibetan translation obviously from AhAra (sustenance). A drop of water creating a smudge on a page of a handwritten manuscript, or a scribe’s error can be the cause of such discrepancies. In such cases, when both meanings make sense in the context of the flow of verses, I have translated both, with the Sanskrit in parentheses. When only one version has made sense in the context of the flow of verses, I have translated only that. Such cases have usually favored the Sanskrit version.
Sometimes, Tibetan nouns are followed by an instrumental particle when the Sanskrit grammar requires it to be genitive, or vice versa. Such discrepancies may also have arisen due to a scribe’s error or a smudge. In such cases, as well, I have followed the Sanskrit version when it makes more sense in the context.
One and a half verses from Sanskrit are missing from the Tibetan, and I have added them in parentheses. When words and phrases in the Sanskrit version have been omitted in the Tibetan translation, and they fit in well with the context, I have also added them in parentheses.
The greatest apparent source of discrepancies, however, is the difficulty of rendering the complexities of Sanskrit grammar into Tibetan. The two languages are extremely different in structure. Sanskrit is one of the most highly inflected Indo-European languages, while Tibetan belongs to the Sinitic family of languages and is far less inflected. Moreover, it is inflected according to different parameters. When the Tibetan is obviously trying to render the Sanskrit construction, and the verb or noun forms are ambiguous in Tibetan due to the limitations of Tibetan grammar, I have followed the Sanskrit grammar.
For example, Tibetan often renders both the dative and ablative cases of Sanskrit nouns with the postposition phyir, and does not distinguish the vocative from the nominative case. The Sanskrit present, past, and future participles, both active and passive, are often all represented by the past tense of a Tibetan verb together with the auxiliary byas. The Sanskrit optative, imperative, and future tenses are mostly all translated with the future of a Tibetan verb together with the auxiliary bya. Third person imperative constructions, as well as locative absolutes, present particular challenges. Tibetan also has difficulty in clearly distinguishing the Sanskrit active, middle, and passive voices, and often leaves out distinctions of singular, dual, and plural. Interrogative and relative pronouns are not easily distinguished from each other, and so on.
The only exception to this guideline concerns the person of the verbs. The Sanskrit version sometimes uses the first person, as when the meditator is addressing himself or herself. Sometimes it uses the second person, when the meditator is addressing his or her mind. And sometimes it uses the third person, as in making a general statement, or a participle construction, which avoids the issue of person. Tibetan verbs do not have personal endings, whereas Sanskrit verbs do. When the Sanskrit occasionally uses a pronoun, the Tibetan translates it. Otherwise, the Tibetan is not clear. I have rendered first and second person verbs in Sanskrit into first and second person in English. However, for the sake of making the text more obviously applicable to personal meditation practice, I have occasionally rendered the Sanskrit third person and participle constructions with the first person in English.
Neither Sanskrit nor Tibetan differentiates gender in third person singular verbs. For the sake of simplicity, I have translated them all as masculine, based on the fact that Shantideva was a monk and was writing primarily for monks. Shantideva’s presentation of meditation on the uncleanliness of the body, as an antidote to longing desire, attachment, and distraction in meditation, is gender neutral in both Sanskrit and Tibetan. Although some of the commentaries specify that the discussion refers to the body of a woman, since that would be the most relevant for a monk audience, I have left the discussion gender neutral as in the original.
Sometimes the Tibetan terms chosen for translating a Sanskrit term have several meanings. When a secondary meaning of the Tibetan corresponds more closely to the Sanskrit term, and the primary meaning does not, I have chosen the secondary meaning, since this was obviously the meaning intended by the translators. When both the Sanskrit and Tibetan terms have several disparate meanings, I have chosen the meaning that is common to both.
Further, sometimes there is a discrepancy in the two versions concerning which words modify or go together with which other words in the verse. In the Sanskrit version, the case and number endings indicate the connections quite clearly, whereas Tibetan is not inflected in the same way. When the Sanskrit makes more sense from the context, I have followed the Sanskrit. When the differences seem insignificant, I have followed the Tibetan.
Occasionally, the order of the phrases in the verses do not correspond with each other, and change the emphasis in the verse. When the Sanskrit ordering gives an emphasis that fits better into the context of the flow of the verses, or is more poetic, I have followed the Sanskrit. When it has not made much difference, I have followed the Tibetan.
Another complication concerns poetic devices. The Sanskrit frequently uses alliteration, puns, and plays on words, which are not conveyed in the Tibetan. I have attempted to convey this device by using them sporadically throughout the English translation, although not necessarily where they appear in Sanskrit. The Sanskrit often repeats a word several times within a verse, or uses it in different forms and inflections, while the Tibetan often uses several terms. Although English style may frown upon such repetition, I have followed the Sanskrit style as much as possible, to convey some of the flavor of Sanskrit poetics. When Tibetan has repeated a word several times within a verse, but the Sanskrit has employed different terms, I have generally followed the Sanskrit, especially when the Tibetan repetition may have been due to a scarcity of synonyms in Tibetan.
Moreover, both the Sanskrit and the Tibetan are in metered verse. Although I have not used a strict meter for the English text, I have tried as much as possible to render it into a loose English meter, so that it flows easily from the mouth. Hopefully, this will make the text more conducive for recitation, meditation, and memorization. Because of the rules of meter, both Sanskrit and Tibetan frequently need to add filler conjunctions, particles, and words of emphasis, to fill out the meter. I have translated them when they also contribute meaning within the context, and have occasionally added filler conjunctions, such as “and,” in English, also for the sake of meter.
Many passages, especially in the ninth chapter on far-reaching discriminating awareness (the perfection of wisdom) have several interpretations, as evidenced by the wide variety of commentaries. As a root text, the verses therefore need to be as neutral as possible in meaning, so that they can act as a root from which the various explanations and levels of understanding can grow. On the other hand, the verses also need to make sense on their own, even without commentary. I have attempted to meet both needs, by adding as few words in parentheses as possible to such passages. When I have added “true” in parentheses before “existence,” for example, this accords with the fact that all the commentaries interpret the text from the Madhyamaka viewpoint, despite differences in presentation of Madhyamaka.
I wish to thank Renate and Rainer Noack, who requested me to teach Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior weekly at the Buddhistische Gesellschaft Berlin, and to the students there who requested me to teach it slowly, thoroughly, and deeply, regardless of how long this might take. The course began in November 2000, took one year to complete the first eight chapters, and has been on the ninth chapter for the last three years, with still a little less than half of that chapter covered. This has afforded the opportunity to delve into each word of the text and its background, and to prepare for the class a rough running translation of the verses that would accord more closely with the explanations.
I wish to thank Christian Dräger and Christian Steinert, who have been translating these rough English verses into German as we have been going along, and for encouraging me to continue the process.
I wish also to thank Albrecht Seeger, who requested me to go through the Tibetan text with him over the last half year. This became the circumstance for revising my entire translation, in accord with the Sanskrit, so that I could explain each grammatical construction and the translators’ choice of Tibetan words. Going through the text, word for word, with him has helped to fine-tune the accuracy of the translation, so that, as much as possible, each word in the Tibetan version is accounted for in the English.
Finally, I wish to thank His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who will be teaching the entire text in Zürich, Switzerland, in August 2005. His planned teaching has inspired me to prepare this translation in timely fashion, so that it may be of benefit for that occasion and serve His Holiness’s aims. May it be of benefit to all.
1. The Benefits of Bodhichitta
(1) Respectfully, I prostrate to the Blissfully Gone (Buddhas)
endowed with Dharmakaya, As well as to their (bodhisattva) offspring
and to everyone worthy of prostration. Let me explain (how to) engage in the Blissfully Gone offsprings’ code, Which I’ve compiled and condensed in accord with Buddhas’ words.
(2) I’ve nothing to say here that’s not come before, And I lack any skill in the crafting of verse; Yet, though I lack even the thought to help others, I’ve composed this to familiarize my mind.
(3) For, due to acquaintance with what is constructive, The force of my belief may increase for a moment, even just through these (words). And if others, equal to myself in fortune, happen to see them, Perhaps they might find them meaningful (too).
(4) Having gained this (body with) respites and enrichments,
so hard to find, Which can fulfill the wishes of (every) being, If, in this (lifetime), I don’t actualize its benefits, When later will a perfect endowment with one come?
(5) Just as a flash of lightening on a dark, cloudy night, For an instant, brightly illuminates all; So, in this world, through the might of the Buddhas, A positive attitude rarely and briefly appears.
(6) Thus, constructive (behavior) is constantly weak, While negative forces are extremely strong, and most unbearable. Except for a full bodhichitta aim, Can anything else constructive outshine it?
(7) The Kings of the Sages, having thoroughly reflected for many eons, Have seen this very (mind) to be of (best) help, For by it, limitless masses of beings Will quickly and easily attain Supreme Bliss.
(8) Those who wish to destroy the hundreds of sufferings
of compulsive existence, Those who wish to dispel the sorrow of limited beings, And those who wish to enjoy the hundreds of states
of much happiness, Will never give up the bodhichitta aim.
(9) The moment miserable beings bound in the prison Of uncontrollably recurring samsara develop a bodhichitta aim, They’re called spiritual offspring of the Blissfully Gone,
And become figures to be honored by the gods of this world, as well as by men.
(10) Like the supreme creation of a gold-making elixir, This unclean body, having been taken, will be transformed Into the priceless gem of a Triumphant One’s body. So, firmly gain hold of what’s known as bodhichitta.
(11) Since the immeasurable mind of the sole Navigator for wandering beings Has (seen) its precious worth upon examining fully; Please, anyone wishing to be parted from the plights of wandering beings: Gain hold, truly firmly, of (this) gem, bodhichitta.
(12) Everything else that’s constructive resembles the plantain tree: Having given birth to its fruit, it’s depleted. But the tree of bodhichitta forever bears fruit And, never depleted, it grows ever more.
(13) Even if they’ve committed extremely unbearable negative acts, Why don’t the caring rely on that Which, when relied on, will instantly free them, Like relying on a hero when greatly afraid.
(14) Like the time-ending fires, it burns off with certainty, In an instant, enormous negative karmic force. With wisdom, the Guardian Maitreya has explained Its fathomless benefits to Sudhana.
(15) Bodhichitta is to be known, in brief, As having two aspects: A bodhichitta aim that aspires to enlightenment And a bodhichitta that’s engaged with (attaining) enlightenment.
(16) As is understood by the distinction Between aspiring to go and (actually) going, So the learned understand the distinction Between these two to be as if stages.
(17) Although great fruits arise, even in recurring samsara, From an aspiring bodhichitta aim, Positive force doesn’t accrue without interruption As it does with an engaged bodhichitta aim.
(18) As soon as someone perfectly gains hold Of that mind, with the thought Never to turn back from totally liberating Infinite realms of limited beings,
(19) From that time onward, Whether asleep or even not caring, A profusion of positive force gushes forth, Without interruption, equal to space.
(20) For the sake of limited beings admiring modest (aims), The Thusly Gone (Buddha) himself Has proclaimed that this is correct In The Sutra Subahu Requested.
(21) If having a thought to be of help, Even thinking, “May I relieve limited beings Merely of headaches,” Comes to have fathomless positive force,
(22) What need to mention the wish to relieve Each and every limited being of fathomless miseries, And the wish to help each and every limited being To actualize fathomless good qualities.
(23) Who has such an altruistic mind as this? Do even fathers? Do even mothers? Do even gods and sages? Does even Brahma have it?
(24) If those limited beings, even in their dreams, Have never before dreamt of such a mind (Even) for their own sakes, How would it have arisen for the sakes of others?
(25) This extraordinary jewel of the mind – A mind for the sake of limited beings, which in others Doesn’t arise for even their own sakes – Crystallizes as something of unprecedented wonder.
(26) How can the positive force of a jewel-like mind, Which is the cause of happiness for all wandering beings And the elixir for the sufferings of limited beings, Be something whose measure can be taken?
(27) If merely a thought to be of help is more especially noble Than making offerings to the Buddhas, What need to mention striving for the sake of the happiness Of all limited beings without exception?
(28) Although having the mind that wishes to shun suffering, They rush headlong into suffering itself. Although wishing for happiness, yet out of naivety, They destroy their own happiness as if it were a foe.
(29) For those who are destitute of happiness And who have many sufferings, It satisfies them with all happiness, Cuts off all suffering,
(30) And eliminates even their naivety. Where is there anything comparably constructive as that? Where is there even such a friend as that? Where is there even such a force as positive as that?
(31) If some consider as worthy of praise Even someone who’s paid back for helping, What need to mention a bodhisattva Who does good without seeking (anything in return)?
(32) People honor as someone who acts constructively Someone who only briefly gives merely a morsel of meager food In a demeaning manner to a few wandering beings, Satiating them for half a day.
(33) What need to mention someone who constantly looks to give, For an eternity of time, the peerless bliss of the Blissfully Gone (Buddhas) To endless numbers of limited beings, Fulfilling the wishes of all their minds?
(34) The Sage has said that if someone generates negative thoughts Toward a philanthropist offspring of the Triumphant like that, That person will remain in a joyless realm for as many eons As the number of negative thoughts that were spent.
(35) However, if someone has an extremely clear-minded (belief in such persons), Its fruits will multiply far more than that. For even in the most acute situations, Triumphant’s offspring never will generate anything negative. Rather, their positive actions naturally increase.
(36) I prostrate to the bodies of those in whom The sacred state of mind, the gem, has arisen. I take safe direction from those sources of bliss Who join to bliss even those who harm them.
2. Openly Admitting Previous Negative Acts
(1) To gain hold of that precious mind, I offer sincerely to you, the Thusly Gone (Buddhas), To the stainless Rare Gem of the hallowed Dharma, And to you, the offspring of the Buddhas, with oceans of good qualities:
(2) Whatever flowers and fruits there are And whatever manners of medicine there are, Whatever jewels there are in this world And whatever pure pleasing waters there are,
(3) Mountains of precious minerals and likewise Forests and secluded delightful places, Trees adorned and bedecked with blossoms, And trees whose branches are laden with all sorts of excellent fruit;
(4) And from the realms of divine beings and others, fragrances, Incense, wish-granting trees, jewel shrubs, An assortment of wild-growing crops, And ornamentals as well, fit to be offered,
(5) Lakes and pools adorned with lotus And with swans possessing a bewitching cry, Everything that’s without an owner To the far reaches of the infinite sphere of space –
(6) Taking them to mind, I offer them fully To you, the Sages, Foremost of Beings, together with your spiritual offspring. Hallowed objects for offerings, having great compassion, Think kindly of me and accept these (tokens) of mine.
(7) Lacking in positive karmic force, I’m extremely impoverished And have nothing else that is precious to offer. Therefore, Guardians whose thoughts are for the welfare of others, Accept them by the power of your concern for my sake.
(8) All my bodies I offer for eternity To you, the Triumphant and to your spiritual offspring. Supreme Beings, please fully accept me. Respectfully, I shall serve as your attendant.
(9) Completely under your care and thus unafraid Of compulsive existence, I shall benefit limited beings. I shall perfectly transcend my previous negative karmic force And henceforth, never commit further negative acts.
(10) To bathing chambers, exquisitely sweet scented, With crystal floors, transparent and polished to a shine, Having beautiful pillars, glowing with gems, And crowned with canopies, radiant with pearls,
(11) I invite you, Thusly Gone (Buddhas) and your spiritual offspring, And shower your bodies, over and again, from many jeweled vases Filled to the brim with scented water and delightful things, To the accompaniment of song and music.
(12) I (now) dry your bodies with incomparable cloths, Clean and well-anointed with scent, And then present you hallowed beings With most fragrant robes correctly dyed to color.
(13) I adorn with excellent garments, fine and smooth, And with hundreds of the choicest pieces of jewelry, this and that, You, the Aryas Samantabhadra, Manjushri, Lokeshvara and all the rest.
(14) With the best colognes whose fragrant vapors Rise to all the myriad worlds, I anoint the bodies Of all you Kings of the Sages, who shine with light, Like sluiced, refined, and polished gold.
(15) To you, the Kings of the Sages, foremost objects for offerings, I present lovely flowers, such as mandarava, lotus, and water lily, With sweet fragrance, each of them (loose) and also Delicately strung together and exquisite in garlands.
(16) I offer you, as well, masses of clouds from the burning of The choicest incense, stealing the mind, whose fragrant aroma pervades (everywhere). I offer you also a celestial feast With a wide array of dishes, delicacies, and nectars to drink.
(17) I offer you lamps of precious metals as well, Arranged in rows on lotuses of gold. On swept ground, sprinkled with scented water, I scatter beautiful flower petals
(18) And offer to you, with a nature of compassion, Immeasurable palaces, enchanting with arias of praise, Draped with dangling ornaments of pearls and gems, beautiful and sparkling, Beyond fathom, becoming an adornment of space.
(19) Eternally, I offer to you Kings of the Sages Stunning jeweled parasols with golden handles, Their rims adorned with exquisite types of decoration, With an elegant shape, erect and gorgeous to behold.
(20) And, in addition to this, may clouds bursting with the music Of a symphony of offering (instruments) And beautiful celestial musicians each take their place, Alleviating the suffering of limited beings.
(21) May they shower, without interruption, A rain of jewels, flowers, and so forth On all you Rare Supreme Gems of the hallowed Dharma, And on your stupa monuments and Buddha images.
(22) Just as Manjushri and others Have made offerings to you, the Triumphant, So do I, too, make offerings to you, my Thusly Gone Guardians, And to your spiritual offspring.
(23) I offer praises to you Oceans of Good Qualities, With melodious eulogies and a sea of tongues. May clouds of harmonies of melodious Eulogies to you amass with certainty all around.
(24) I prostrate to all you Buddhas who have graced the three times, To the Dharma and to you, the Highest Assembly, Bowing down with bodies as numerous As all the atoms of the world.
(25) I prostrate to you bases for the bodhicitta aim And to your stupa monuments. I prostrate to you abbots and likewise to you (ordaining) masters, And to you supreme (upholders of) tamed behavior.
(26) Till I reach the heart of a purified state, I take safe direction from you Buddhas. Likewise, I take safe direction from the Dharma And from you, the Assembly of bodhisattvas.
(27) With palms pressed together, I beseech You Buddhas and bodhisattvas Residing in every direction, Possessing great compassion:
(28) Throughout my beginningless samsaric existence, In this and other lives, I’ve unwittingly committed negative acts Or caused others to commit (them), and further,
(29) Oppressed by the confusion of naivety, I’ve rejoiced (in them) – whatever I’ve done, I see them as mistakes and openly admit (them) To you, my Guardians, from the depths of my heart.
(30) Whatever harmful actions of body, speech and mind I’ve committed out of disturbing emotion Toward you Three Supreme Gems, my fathers, my mothers, My spiritual mentors or others,
(31) And whatever extremely unbearable base actions I’ve done – I, who am full of negative force That gives rise to faults through many wrong actions – I openly admit all of them to you Spiritual Leaders.
(32) But, I may be snatched from my life Before cleansing myself of my negative forces of karma. Just as (then I may fall to a horrible rebirth), I beseech you for safe direction To free myself definitely from that, with the swiftest of means.
(33) Whether or not I’ve done (purification), Since this Lord of Death, who can’t be trusted, never will wait, Everyone, whether sick or not, (dies) all of a sudden. My life can’t be trusted.
(34) Leaving all behind, I’ll depart. But not having realized this, I’ve committed all sorts of negative acts For the sake of my friends and my foes.
(35) My foes will vanish; My friends also will vanish; I too shall vanish; Likewise, all will vanish.
(36) Just like the experiences in a dream, Anything I enjoy Will become an object of memory; Everything that’s passed, I won’t see (again).
(37) Even within this brief lifetime itself, Many friends and foes have passed. But whatever unbearable (fruits) there are From the negative acts I’ve committed for their sake (still) lie ahead.
(38) Through not having realized That, all of a sudden, I (can die) like this, I’ve committed negative acts of so many sorts Out of naivety, desire, and anger.
(39) Day and night, without a stop, This life is always getting shorter – No extension ever comes from the side; Why should someone like me not die?
(40) While lying in bed, Even if I’m surrounded by all my relatives and friends, I alone shall experience The feelings of my life being severed.
(41) When seized by the messengers of the Lord of Death, What help are relatives? What help are friends? Only my positive karmic force will provide me a safe direction then, But I’ve never relied on just that.
(42) O Guardians! Not (really) caring, I didn’t know (There’d be) such terror as this, And so, for the sake of this impermanent life, I’ve caused so much negative karmic force to build up.
(43) If someone even just being led to where His limbs will be lopped off today is so terrified that, With dry mouth, sunken eyes, and worse, He appears transfigured from before,
(44) What need to mention the tremendous torment When grabbed by the macabre physical forms Of the sinister messengers of the Lord of Death And fallen into a fit of great panic.
(45) “Who can show me a safe and sound direction Out of this monstrous horror?” Staring with terrified, bulging eyes I’ll search the four quarters for anyone (who can show me) safe direction out.
(46) (And then,) seeing no one in the four quarters who can give safe direction, I’ll become filled with total despair from that. If no one having safe direction is there in that place, What can I do at that time?
(47) Therefore, from this very day, I take safe direction From you, the Triumphant, you Guardians of those who wander, Who strove to become safe directions for wandering beings And who can remove all my fears with your stupendous forces.
(48) Likewise, I purely take safe direction From the Dharma you’ve realized, Which abolishes the fears of recurring samsara, And also from you, the Assembly of bodhisattvas.
(49) Totally panicked with anguish, To you, Samantabhadra, I offer myself; And, of my own accord, I make to you, Manjughosha, an offering of my body.
(50) To you as well, Guardian Avalokiteshvara, Who are undeceiving in acting with compassion, I cry out for help in a wail of torment: ”Pray, give safe direction to me who has (such) a negative karmic force!”
(51) From Akashagarbha, Kshitigarbha, And all you Guardians with great compassion, I seek safe direction and, from my heart, Cry out for help.
(52) I take safe direction from you, the One with a Vajra: Upon your sight, all malevolent beings, Such as the messengers of the Lord of Death, Flee in panic to the four quarters (of the world).
(53) Previously, I’ve transgressed your advice, But seeing now these horribly frightening things, I take safe direction from you, and by this, May I purge myself quickly of these fearful things.
(54) If even when scared by a common illness, I have to act in accord with a doctor’s advice, What need to mention when perpetually afflicted By diseases, like desire, (that produce) hundreds of injuries.
(55) If just one of these can bring all the people Living in this Southern Continent to ruin, And if no other medicine to cure them Is to be found in any direction,
(56) Then the urge not to act in accord with the advice Of the Omniscient Physicians concerning that, Which can remove every painful disease, Is something to be rebuked as extremely naive.
(57) If I need to be careful At a small and ordinary cliff, What need to mention at the cliff over which I can fall For thousands of leagues for a long duration (in the joyless realms).
(58) It’s incorrect (for me) to sit at ease, Thinking, “I won’t die just today,” For without a doubt that time will come When I shall be no more.
(59) Who can give me a state of no fear? How can I be freed with certainty from this? If I shall doubtlessly vanish, How can I sit with my mind at ease?
(60) What I’ve experienced in the past has disappeared, And because of my clinging To whatever extra I have beyond that, I’ve been acting contrary to my mentors’ advice.
(61) Having abandoned this lifetime And likewise my relatives and friends, If alone I must wander in an uncertain direction, What use with all of my friends and foes?
(62) “From destructive actions comes (nothing but) suffering; How can I be liberated definitely from that?” It’s proper for me to think, day and night, Constantly only about that.
(63) Out of naivety or (simply) not knowing, Whatever I’ve done that fits into being Either naturally disgraceful Or a negative act proscribed (by you Buddhas),
(64) I openly admit all of them Directly before the eyes of you Guardians, Prostrating over and again, with palms pressed together And a mind dreading suffering.
(65) Spiritual Leaders, in (light of my) taking my negative acts As having been misdeeds, I beseech you: Since this was not wholesome, I shall never do them again.
3. Gaining Hold of a Bodhichitta Aim
(1) With pleasure, I rejoice in the positive actions That relieve the sufferings of the worse rebirth states For all limited beings and that place these, who suffer, In better rebirth states.
(2) I rejoice in that build up of positive (force) That became the causes for the (arhats’) purified state; I rejoice in the definite freedom of (these) embodied beings From the miseries of uncontrollable rebirth.
(3) I rejoice in the purified state of the Guardian (Buddhas) And also in the levels of mind of their spiritual offspring; And with pleasure, I rejoice in the ocean of positive force From their having developed bodhichitta aims To bring every limited being joy And in their deeds that have aided limited beings.
(4) With palms pressed together, I beseech The Buddhas of all directions: Please shine Dharma’s lamp for limited beings Suffering and groping in darkness.
(5) With palms pressed together, I beseech The Triumphant who would pass beyond sorrow: I beg you, remain for countless eons So as not to leave in their blindness these wandering beings.
(6) By whatever positive force I’ve built up Through all of these that I’ve done like that, May I remove every suffering Of all limited beings.
(7) So long as wandering beings fall sick, May I serve as the medicine, The doctors and their nurse, Until they’ve been cured of their illness.
(8) May I eliminate the pain of hunger and thirst With a shower of food and drink; And, in the times of the middle eons of famine, May I myself change into food and drink.
(9) For limited beings, destitute and poor, May I become a treasure that never runs out And remain in their presence As a variety of sorts of useful things.
(10) To fulfil the aims of all limited beings, I give, without sense of a loss, My body and likewise my pleasures, And all my positive forces of the three times.
(11) Giving everything away (brings) release with nirvana, And my mind is (aimed) for realising nirvana. As giving away all comes together (with death), It’s best to give (now) to limited beings.
(12) Having given this body to all those with limited bodies To do with as they like, It’s up to them to do what they want: Let them kill it, revile it, always beat it, or whatever.
(13) Let them toy with my body, Make it into a source of ridicule or a joke. Having given away this body of mine, For what should I hold it dear?
(14) Let them do whatever to (my) body, So long as it doesn’t cause them harm; But may anything focused on me Never turn out to be meaningless.
(15) If anyone, having focused on me, Develops an angry or negative mind, May that always turn into a cause For fulfilling all of his or her aims.
(16) And may everyone who speaks badly of me, Or does something else that’s of harm, Or likewise hurls ridicule at me, Become someone with the fortune for a purified state.
(17) May I be a guardian for those with no guardian, A pathfinder for those who are on the road, And a boat, a ship, and a bridge For those who would cross.
(18) May I be an island for those seeking an island, A lamp for those desiring a lamp, A bed for everyone wishing a bed, And a servant for every embodied being who would want a servant.
(19) May I be a wish-granting gem, a vase of excellence, Mantras of pure awareness, magnificent medicine, Wish-granting trees, and cows of plenty For embodied beings.
(20) And eternally, like earth and so on – The great elements – and space, May I serve, in a plenitude of forms, as the basis for life For fathomless numbers of limited beings.
(21) And till they pass to nirvana, May I serve, as well, in all ways, As the causes for life in the realms Of limited beings till the ends of space.
(22) Just as the Blissfully Gone (Buddhas) of the past Have generated a bodhichitta aim, Then lived by the stages Of bodhisattva training;
(23) So, too, do I generate a bodhichitta aim To help those who wander, And shall train in the stages Of bodhisattva training.
(24) Purely gaining hold, like this, Of bodhichitta with (this) sound state of mind, Afterwards, as well, to enhance it further, Celebrate (that) mind in this way:
(25) Now my life’s become fruitful, For having wonderfully attained a human existence, Today I’ve awakened my Buddha-nature And now have become a Buddha’s spiritual child.
(26) Now, in whatever way possible, I shall undertake actions that accord with its traits, And never defile this impeccable nature That lacks any fault.
(27) Just like a blind man Finding a gem in a pile of trash, Likewise, it’s come about by some force That within me has developed a bodhichitta aim.
(28) It’s the supreme nectar, indeed, for defeating The Lord of Death of wandering beings; It’s the inexhaustible treasure as well For dispelling the poverty of those who roam.
(29) It is the best medicine, too, that brings to full rest The diseases of those who are passing through; It’s the tree that shelters all wandering beings, Roaming and exhausted on the roads of their compulsive lives.
(30) It’s the public bridge for freeing All wandering beings from the worse rebirth states; It’s the risen mind-moon for dispelling the fever Of the disturbing emotions of those who roam.
(31) It’s the magnificent sun for clearing away The mist of not knowing of wandering beings; It’s the fresh froth of butter that rises to the top From the churning of the milk of the sacred Dharma.
(32) For wandering beings roaming, as guests, on the roads of compulsive existence, Wishing to enjoy a share of bliss, This is the best for setting (them) with bliss, Satisfying the entirety of beings (who’ll come) as guests.
(33) Today, before the eyes of all sources of direction, I’ve summoned as guests (all) wandering beings For bliss up to the state of a Blissfully Gone (Buddha). Gods, anti-gods, and so on, take joy!
4. Taking Care (about Bodhichitta)
(1) As a Triumphant Ones’ offspring, Having firmly gained hold of bodhichitta like this, I’ll strive never to transgress its training, Without ever wavering.
(2) For something undertaken all of a sudden Or something I didn’t examine well, Even if I’ve given a promise about it, It’s proper to examine, “Do it or give it up?”
(3) But how can I ever withdraw From what the Buddhas and their spiritual offspring Have examined with great discriminating awareness And I, myself, have repeatedly examined as well?
(4) If, having promised like this, I don’t carry it through with my actions, Then, by deceiving every limited being, What will become of my rebirth states?
(5) If (Buddha) has said that once someone’s made up his mind To give away even some small and trivial thing, And then doesn’t (actually) give it away, He’ll turn into a clutching ghost;
(6) Then, if I should deceive all wandering beings, After having sincerely invited them To unsurpassable bliss, Will I go to a better rebirth state?
(7) And how the karma works for someone Who gives up bodhichitta, yet attains liberation, Is beyond all thought: Only the Omniscient can understand.
(8) For a bodhisattva, (however,) this is the heaviest From among (all) the downfalls; Because, if something should happen like that, It impairs the welfare of all limited beings.
(9) And should anyone else cause an obstruction, For even an instant, to his positive acts, There’ll be no end to his worse rebirth states, From impairing the welfare of limited beings.
(10) For if one’s (state of rebirth) will worsen By destroying the joy of even a single, limited being, What need to mention destroying the bliss Of embodied beings as vast as all space?
(11) Therefore, someone with the force from a downfall And the force from (developing) bodhichitta (again) Keeps bouncing down and up in samsara, For a long time obstructed in reaching any arya level of realized mind.
(12) Therefore, with highest regard, I shall carry it through, Just as I’ve promised, because If, from now on, I don’t make an effort, I’ll wander from lower to ever-lower states.
(13) Countless Buddhas, who have helped All limited beings, have already passed. Yet, I wasn’t an object of their healing, Because of my mistakes.
(14) And if I still were to act like this, It would be the same, over and again: Worse rebirth states, sickness, death, Being dismembered and torn apart.
(15) If the advent of a Thusly Gone (Buddha), And gaining embodiment as a human (with) belief in what’s fact And the properly constructive instincts are so rare, When shall I attain them (again) like this?
(16) Although on a day like today, I’m not sick, Have food, and haven’t any injuries, Life is but for a moment and will let me down: The body is like something on loan for an instant.
(17) And with my behavior like this, I won’t even attain a human body (again). And if I haven’t attained (another) human body, I’ll have only (my) negative karmic force and nothing constructive.
(18) If even when having the chance for constructive behavior, I do nothing constructive, then what course will I have When completely struck dumb by the sufferings In the worse rebirth states?
(19) If, while not doing anything constructive, I continue to build up negative karmic force, Then for hundreds of millions of eons I won’t even hear the words “better rebirth state.”
(20) Because of just this, the Vanquishing Master has said Rebirth as a human is so difficult to attain, Just as it is for a turtle to stick its neck through the hole In a yoke adrift on the vast sea.
(21) If, by the negative force of committing (a heinous act) for an instant, I must spend an eon in a joyless realm of unrelenting pain, What need to mention not going to one of the better rebirth states Because of the negative force I’ve built up over beginningless samsara?
(22) But just having experienced only that much, I shall still not get free, For while experiencing like this, I’ll prolifically create further negative force.
(23) So if, having found a respite such as this, I don’t make being constructive a habit, There’s nothing more self-deceptive than this; There’s nothing more stupid than this.
(24) If, having understood this, I procrastinate stupidly still in the future, Then, when the hour for (my) dying will come, Enormous anguish will swell.
(25) Then, if my body will burn for so long In the unbearable fires of a joyless realm, There can be no doubt that my mind will be tortured By the searing flames of unendurable regret.
(26) Having found, somehow, a beneficial Rebirth, so hard to find, If (now), while able to discriminate, I drag myself down once more to a joyless realm,
(27) It amounts to not having had a mind while here, Like having been stupefied by a mantra spell. If I don’t know what’s causing me to be so stupid, Well, what is it there inside my (head)?
(28) Although enemies, such as anger and craving, Have neither legs nor arms, Are neither brave nor wise, How is it that they’ve made me like their slave?
(29) For while squatting in my mind, At their pleasure, they gleefully cause me harm. To be patient and not become angry with them Is an inappropriate, pathetic place for patience.
(30) Even if all the gods and anti-gods Were to rise up against me as enemies, They couldn’t drag and feed me into the fires (Of a joyless realm) of unrelenting pain.
(31) But those strong mighty enemies, my disturbing emotions, Can, in a moment, hurl me into them, which, When met, will cause not even the ashes Of the King of Mountains to remain.
(32) My disturbing emotions are long-standing enemies, Without a beginning or an end. No other enemy can be like that, For such a long time.
(33) With all (the others), becoming close and serving (them) nicely Bring benefit and happiness; But being close with my disturbing emotions (Only) harms me with even more pain.
(34) These longtime, continuing enemies like this Are the sole causes for masses of harm to multiply wildly. How can I be joyful and not terrified in samsara, If I set a secure place (for them) in my heart?
(35) Where can I have happiness If, in a web of attachments within my mind, They lurk as guards of my samsara-prison, Becoming my murderers and butchers in joyless realms and the like?
(36a) Therefore, I shall never give up my efforts in this Until, directly myself, I definitely smash these enemies.
(36b) Having become enraged at someone who caused them even some minor, occasional harm, Those with full-blown pride won’t sleep till they’ve smashed that (enemy).
(37) And if, while lined up in the height of battle against those with disturbing emotions, Who will come to suffer their natural deaths (anyway), Those obsessed with vindictively smashing them will dismiss the pain of being struck by the weapons of arrows or spears And, till accomplishing their aims, will never run off in the opposite direction;
(38) Is there need to mention that I mustn’t lose heart and procrastinate, Even if I’m caused hundreds of sufferings When, now, I strive to definitely overcome my natural enemies (my disturbing emotions), Which are the continual source of all my sufferings?
(39) If wounds, without even some purpose, inflicted by enemies, Are held up like ornaments on the body, Then why are sufferings troublesome to me, Who impeccably strive to fulfill the Great Purpose?
(40) If fishermen, outcastes, peasants and the like, Even with the thought of merely their livelihoods, Endure such sufferings as heat and cold, Why aren’t the likes of me patient for the sake of the happiness of wandering beings?
(41) When I promised to liberate from their disturbing emotions Wandering beings in the ten directions As far as the ends of space, I myself was not freed yet from disturbing emotions,
(42) And didn’t even realize the extent of my (being under their control); Wasn’t it crazy to have spoken (like that)? But, as this is so, I shall never withdraw From destroying my disturbing emotions.
(43) To do this shall be my obsession: Holding a grudge, I shall meet them in battle! Disturbing emotions, in forms such as these, Are exclusively for destroying the disturbing emotions.
(44) Better for me to be burned to death Or have my head chopped off: I shall never, in any circumstances, Bow to the enemy, (my) disturbing emotions.
(45) Common enemies, when driven off from a country, Will settle and occupy other lands, And when they’ve recovered their strength, return once again; But the way of the enemy, my disturbing emotions, is not similar in this regard.
(46) Pitiful disturbing emotions, when gotten rid of by wisdom’s eye And kicked out of my mind, where will you go? Where will you live to come back to harm me? Weak-minded, it’s fallen to my making no effort.
(47) If disturbing emotions don’t live in sensory objects, in networks of sensory cells, in between (the two), Or somewhere other than that, then where can they live to harass all wandering beings (again)? They’re like an illusion and, because of that, I shall get rid of the fear in my heart and devote myself resolutely to striving for wisdom. Why have I been torturing myself, for no real reason, in joyless realms and the like?
(48) Having decisively thought like this, I shall strive to actualize the training, just as explained. Not listening to the doctor’s instructions, How can a patient in need of a cure be healed by his medicines?
5. Safeguarding with Alertness
(1) With the wish to safeguard my training, I need to work hard and safeguard my mind; If I’m unable to safeguard my mind, I’ll also be unable to safeguard my training.
(2) Left to run loose, the elephant of my mind can ravage me With (a joyless realm of) unrelenting pain. Untamed, rutting elephants in this (world) Can’t cause me such harm.
(3) But, if the elephant of my mind is firmly bound By the rope of mindfulness on every side, All fears will vanish and everything constructive Will come into my hands.
(4) Tigers, lions, elephants, bears, Snakes and all enemies, The beings who are the guards in the joyless realms, Witches and likewise cannibals –
(5) They’ll all be bound, by having bound This mind alone; They’ll all be tamed, by having tamed This mind alone.
(6) The Speaker of the Perfect himself has shown That, in this way, all fears, As well as immeasurable sufferings, Come from the mind.
(7) Who intentionally created All the weapons for the beings in the joyless realms? Who created the burning iron ground? Where did all the siren-maids come from?
(8) The Sage has said that all such things as that Are (what come from) a mind having negative karmic force. Therefore, in the threefold world, There’s nothing to fear except the mind.
(9) (After all,) if the perfection of giving were That the poverty of wandering beings was all gone; Then how could the Guardians of old have perfected it, Since wandering beings have hunger still now?
(10) The perfection of giving is said to be Through the mind that would give away to everyone All that is mine, together with its results; Thus, it’s the mind itself.
(11) Fish and the like, where could anyone take them (all) So that they won’t be killed (ever again)? The perfection of ethical discipline, it’s explained, Is from gaining the mind to give up (such acts).
(12) Cruel beings are (everywhere) just as is space: It can’t possibly come that I’ll have destroyed them (all). But if I’ve destroyed this mind of anger alone, It’s the same as my having destroyed all those foes.
(13) Where could I possibly find the leather To cover with leather the whole surface of the earth? But with leather just on the soles of my shoes, It’s the same as having covered the entire earth’s surface.
(14) Likewise, although it’s impossible for me To ward off external events; If I would ward off my mind, What need to ward off anything else?
(15) The result of feeble (mental) application, Even when accompanied by speech and physical (acts), Is not like the result of developing an intense mind alone, Which would be Brahma states and beyond.
(16) The Knower of Reality has said That recitation and all physically difficult practices, Even if done for a very long time, will be meaningless, If done with a mind that’s distracted elsewhere.
(17) And those who don’t know the secret of the mind, The paramount significance of Dharma, Will wander about, pointlessly and miserably, Wishing to gain happiness and overcome suffering.
(18) This being so, I’ll take hold of my mind And safeguard it well. If I’ve left out the taming behavior of safeguarding the mind, What use are the many (other) taming behaviors?
(19) Just as I’d take great pains and be careful about a wound When standing in the midst of an unstable, wild crowd, So too, I shall safeguard, always, the wound of my mind, Since I’m living in the midst of difficult people.
(20) And if I’d be careful about a wound, Even from fearing the wound’s hurting a little, Then why don’t I safeguard the wound of my mind, From fear of being smashed by the crushing mountains (of a joyless realm)?
(21) If I can remain like this in my behavior, Then whether I’m situated amidst difficult people Or placed even in the midst of nubile young women, My stable restraint shall not fall apart.
(22) Better that my wealth, the respect I receive, My body and livelihood disappear! Better even that my other virtues decline, But I shall never let my mind degenerate!
(23) O you, who would wish to safeguard your minds, With palms pressed together, I tell you, Safeguard your mindfulness and alertness, With all effort.
(24) People who are disturbed by sickness Are powerless over all their actions. Those whose minds are disturbed by bewilderment Are likewise powerless over all their actions.
(25) Whatever has been heard, pondered and meditated upon By those whose minds are lacking alertness, Will not be retained in their memories, Just like water in a leaking vase.
(26) Many learned people, Even when having conviction and extraordinary effort, Become fouled with a downfall, Due to the mistake of lacking alertness.
(27) The thieves (that come in) from their lack of alertness Go on, after plundering their mindfulness, (To take,) as well, the positive karmic force they’ve built up, So that they go to a worse rebirth state, as if robbed by thieves.
(28) This pack of thieves, the disturbing emotions, Searches for a chance (to break in); And, having found the chance, steals what’s constructive, Destroying the life of a better rebirth state.
(29) Therefore, I shall never let mindfulness Be taken away from the gateway of my mind. Should it be gone, I’ll recall the sufferings Of the worse rebirth states and closely reset it.
(30) Through the instructions of the learned and dread, (Gained) from living together with spiritual mentors, Fortunate people, who would show (them) respect, Will easily develop their mindfulness.
(31) “The Buddhas and bodhisattvas are endowed With unobstructed vision, everywhere: I’m always standing Before the eyes of them all.”
(32) Someone thinking like that, would take on, in this way, Moral self-dignity, respect and dread. Through this, his close mindfulness of the Buddhas Would rise up, over and again.
(33) When mindfulness is set at the gateway of the mind For the purpose of safeguarding, Then alertness will come, And even what’s gone will come back again.
(34) Whenever I’ve recognized that, at the start, The way my mind’s (motivated) has some fault, I shall remain, at those times, like a block of wood, Able to restrain myself.
(35) I shall never look around Without any purpose, because of distraction. With a resolute mind, I shall always look with my eyes cast downwards.
(36) But, for the sake of relaxing my gaze, I’ll look around now and then. And if someone appears in my field of vision, I shall look up and say, “Welcome.”
(37) To check for dangers on the road and the like, I shall look over and again in the four directions. Then, after pausing, I shall turn round and look To see what’s behind.
(38) Then having examined both ahead and behind, I shall either go on or come (back). Thus, shall I act, in all situations, After knowing what’s needed.
(39) (Having paused and decided,) “I’ll keep my body like this,” And then jumping back into whatever I’m doing, Then later, I shall look periodically At the way in which my body’s remaining.
(40) With the utmost effort, I shall check That the rutting elephant of my mind Has not been let loose from how it’s been tied To the great pillar of my Dharma intent.
(41) Never letting go, for even an instant, The duty of my absorbed concentration, I shall check one by one, like that, (each moment of) mind, (To see,) “What’s my mind engaging in?”
(42) But if I’m unable, when involved in a frightening situation, An offering feast, or the like, I’ll let it do what’s appropriate. Thus, it’s been taught that at times of giving, One may stay with equanimity toward ethical discipline.
(43) Having considered and begun to do something, I won’t think about anything other than this. Then, with my intentions directed at that, I shall accomplish that very thing first.
(44) Everything, this way, will get accomplished well; Otherwise, neither will come about. Also like this, the derivative disturbing factor, Inalertness, will never increase.
(45) When various kinds of senseless talk And numerous varieties of wondrous entertainment Are happening all around, I shall rid myself of attraction to them.
(46) If, for no reason, I start digging up the earth, Picking at the grass, or doodling in the dirt, I shall immediately stop, out of dread, By recalling the advice of the Blissfully Gone (Buddhas).
(47) Whenever I might wish to move (my body) Or might wish to speak, First, I’ll examine my mind, and then act with firmness, Yoked to what’s (ethically) correct.
(48) When (I notice that) my mind would (compromise) with attachment, Or would (oppose this) with anger, I shall not make a move; I shall not speak (a word). I shall remain like a block of wood.
(49) If my mind is overexcited and sarcastic, Or has arrogance and conceit, Has the intention to ridicule, Or is greedy, hypocritical, and deceitful,
(50) When it would readily brag about me, Or would criticize others, And become insulting and quarrelsome, I shall remain, at those times, like a block of wood.
(51) (When) my mind would desire material gain,
displays of respect, and fame; Or desire the care of attendants and followers, Or would wish to be served, I shall remain, at those times, like a block of wood.
(52) (When) my mind would toss away the aims of others And, wishing to care for my own aims (alone), Would wish to say something, I shall remain, at those times, like a block of wood.
(53) (When) my mind is impatient, lazy, and cowardly, Or likewise, overly confident and noisy with nonsense, Or is stubbornly attached to what’s on my side, I shall remain, at those times, like a block of wood.
(54) Having examined my mind in this way For fully disturbing emotions and pointless endeavors, Being courageous, I shall hold it firmly With opponent forces, at those times.
(55) Resolute and happily convinced, Stable, respectful, and polite, Having moral self-dignity as well as dread, Quieted down, and striving to bring happiness to others,
(56) Never disheartened by the inconsistent whims of infantile people, And, (realizing) that they arise in their minds Because of their developing disturbing emotions, Having a feeling of kindness (toward them),
(57) And, influenced by (thoughts) of myself and (these) limited beings, (Engaging) in things that are never disgraceful, I shall always keep hold of this mind, Without self(-pride), like a magic emanation.
(58) By thinking over and again that it’s after a long time That I’ve gained a respite, supreme, I shall hold my mind in that way, As utterly immovable as the King of Mountains.
(59) If, O mind, you’re not made unhappy When (this body) is completely torn apart and dragged here and there By vultures greedy for flesh, Why are you pampering it now?
(60) Holding onto this body as “mine,” Why, O mind, do you safeguard it (so)? Since you and it are two separate things, What can it do for you by itself?
(61) Bewildered mind, why don’t you take possession Of a clean, wooden sculpture (instead)? What’s the point of safeguarding this putrid device, Assembled from unclean things?
(62) First, with your intellect, Peel off and separate the layer of skin, And then, with the scalpel of discriminating awareness, Slice off, to the side, the meat from the skeletal frame.
(63) And having split open even the bones, Look inside, down to the marrow, And examine for yourself, ”What essence is there?”
(64) If, even searching with effort like this, You’re unable to see any essence in it, Then why are you safeguarding this body still, With such attachment?
(65) If, being unclean, it’s unfit to be eaten by you, And even the blood is not fit to be drunk, And even the intestines not fit to be sucked; What use is the body to you?
(66) Just secondarily, safeguarding it is proper For the sake of feed for the jackals and vultures. This body of human beings is no more Than something to be put to good use.
(67) And if even, when you’ve safeguarded like that, The merciless Lord of Death will (still) steal it And give it to the birds and the dogs, What will there be that you can do then?
(68) If you wouldn’t give clothing and the like Even to a servant who’s unwilling to (stay on and) work, Then why exhaustingly take care of the flesh, When this body goes elsewhere, even having spoon-fed it?
(69) But having given it wages, Now you must make it serve your own aims. Don’t give it everything (it wants), Without it’s being of help.
(70) Apply to the body the notion of a boat, For it’s merely the support of going and coming, And transform it into a body that (will go) as you will, To fulfill the wishes of limited beings.
(71) Thus I shall have self-control And always present a smiling face. I’ll stop frowning and grimacing (in disapproval), I’ll be friendly with wandering beings, and be honest.
(72) I won’t throw down seats and the like, Recklessly, with noise; I won’t (pound) violently for doors to be opened; (Rather,) I shall always delight in being quiet.
(73) Storks, cats and robbers Accomplish their desired aims By moving noiselessly and keeping low. A disciplined (bodhisattva) always acts in that way.
(74) Respectfully, I shall take to the crown of my head The words of those skilled in encouraging others And who offer their help, without being asked. I shall always become the student of everyone.
(75) I shall say, “Well spoken,” to all Who speak good (advice), And having seen someone acting constructively, With praises, I’ll let it bring me joy.
(76) I shall speak of (others’) good qualities when they’re out of sight, And when their good qualities are spoken of, agree. When my own good qualities are mentioned, I shall think of those qualities with appreciation.
(77) All (constructive) undertakings are a cause for joy, Which is rare, even if money could buy it. Therefore, let me take pleasure with joy In the good qualities that others have worked on.
(78) (Rejoicing) won’t bring me any loss in this life And in future lives, my happiness will be great. Finding fault (will bring me) unfriendliness and suffering And in future lives, my suffering will be great.
(79) When talking, I shall speak from my heart, coherently, With the meaning clear, pleasingly, Rid of greed and aggression, Gently, and just enough.
(80) When my eyes behold limited beings, I shall think, “Depending on them, I shall attain Buddhahood,” And look with a sincere and loving manner.
(81) Being continuous, driven by a strong intention, Or driven by an opponent force, And (directed) toward those with good qualities, the helpful, or the suffering, My constructive actions will become mighty.
(82) Skillful and filled with exuberance, I shall always do my deeds myself; I shall never rely on anyone else To do any of my deeds.
(83) I shall practice the far-reaching attitudes of giving and so on As being more exalted, one after the other. I shall never discard a greater for the sake of a smaller: I shall consider, most importantly, the benefit for others.
(84) Having realized it’s like that, I shall always keep striving for the benefit of others. The Far-Seeing Compassionate One has permitted, For such (a bodhisattva), what’s prohibited (for others).
(85) I shall share with those fallen to ruin, those without guardians, And those maintaining tamed behavior, And merely eat a proper amount. With the exception of my threefold robes, I shall give away all.
(86) For some trivial aim, I shall not harm my body That’s practicing the sacred Dharma. Acting like that, (all) the hopes of limited beings Will be quickly fulfilled.
(87) I shall not give this body away While my thought of compassion is still not pure. I shall give it over (till then), in this and other (lives), in whatever (way possible), To causes that’ll fulfill the Great Purpose.
(88) I shall not explain Dharma to those lacking respect, To those with heads bound (with cloth) while not being sick, To those holding parasols, canes, or weapons, Or to those whose faces are veiled,
(89) Nor the vast and profound to those who are modest, Nor to women without (also) a man. I shall always pay equal respect To the modest and the supreme Dharma teachings.
(90) I shall not join to the Dharma for the modest Those who are vessels for the vast Dharma teachings, Nor shall I cause them to abandon (bodhisattva) behavior, Or entice them into (merely reciting) the sutras or mantras.
(91) Should I spit or toss away the stick for (cleaning) my teeth, I shall cover it over (with earth). Further, it’s despicable to urinate and so forth Into water or on land that’s to be used.
(92) I shall not eat with stuffing my mouth, With noise, or with my mouth wide open. Nor shall I sit with my legs outstretched Or with my arms simultaneously (crossed), pressed (against my body).
(93) I shall not go in a vehicle, on a bed, (a seat), Or in a room alone with someone else’s woman. Having observed or inquired, I shall give up All that would bring disrespect from the world.
(94) I shall never point with (my left hand or) one finger, But respectfully with my right, And with the entire hand; I shall also indicate the path like that.
(95) I shall not wildly wave my arms, Nor shout out loud, when it’s scarcely urgent, But shall signal with a snap of the fingers and the like, Otherwise, I’ll get out of control.
(96) Just as the Guardian (Buddha) lay down to pass to nirvana, So shall I lie down to sleep, on the preferable side, And, with alertness, yoke myself firmly from the start To the intention to rise again quickly.
(97) Out of all the boundless bodhisattva behaviors That have been spoken of, I shall definitely put them to practice (at least) to the extent Of the conduct for cleansing my mind.
(98) And I shall recite The Three Heaps (Sutra) Three times each day and (each) night, And thus, with the support of the Triumphant and my bodhichitta aim, I shall neutralize my remaining downfalls.
(99) Whatever situation I may be acting in, Of my own accord or from the influence of others, I shall vigorously train in whatever is the training That’s been taught for that situation.
(100) There isn’t anything in which the spiritual offspring Of the Triumphant don’t train. For those skilled in living in this way, nothing (they do) Will escape becoming a positive force.
(101) Whether directly or indirectly, I shall not do anything Other than what’s for the benefit of limited beings, And for solely limited beings’ sake
I shall dedicate it all to enlightenment.
(102) I shall never forsake, even at the cost of my life, A spiritual mentor, who is skilled In the points of the Vast Vehicle (Mahayana) And superlative in (keeping) the bodhisattva taming behavior.
(103) I shall learn the way to respectfully relate to a spiritual mentor From Shri Sambhava’s Biography. This and other advice of the Buddha Can be known from reading the sutras.
(104) It is in the sutras that the trainings appear, And so I shall read the sutra texts. I shall examine, as a start, The Akashagarbha Sutra.
(105) I shall definitely examine The Compendium of Trainings over and again, Because, in it, what always is practiced Is extensively shown,
(106) Or look, to the extent they’re condensed in brief, At The Compendium of Sutras, And then, energetically examine as well The second (such texts), compiled by Arya Nagarjuna.
(107) I shall put into practice Whatever is not prohibited in them, And implement fully the trainings seen (there) In order to safeguard my worldly mind.
(108) The defining feature of safeguarding with alertness Is but this in brief: Examining, over and again, The condition of my body and mind.
(109) With my body, I shall put this all into practice. What can be accomplished by mouthing it merely with words? (After all,) will a sick man be helped By merely reciting the medical treatment?
6. Showing Patience
(1) Whatever generosity, Offerings to the Blissfully Gone (Buddhas) and the like, And positive deeds I’ve amassed over thousands of eons – One (moment of) hatred will devastate them all.
(2) As no negative force resembles anger, And no trial resembles patience, I shall therefore meditate on patience, With effort and in various ways.
(3) When the thorn of anger lodges in my heart, My mind doesn’t feel any peace, Doesn’t gain any joy or pleasure, Doesn’t fall asleep, and becomes unstable.
(4) Even those on whom he lavishes wealth and honor And those who’ve become dependent on him Get provoked to the point of murdering A lord who’s possessed with anger.
(5) Friends and relations get disgusted with him, And though he might gather (others) with gifts, he isn’t regarded with trust and respect. In brief, there’s no way at all in which A raging person is in a happy situation.
(6) Hence the enemy, rage, Creates sufferings such as those and the like, While whoever clamps down and destroys his rage Will be happy in this (life) and others.
(7) Finding its fuel in the foul state of mind That arises from its bringing about things I don’t want And its preventing what I wish, Anger, once enflamed, destroys me.
(8) Therefore, I shall totally eradicate The fuel of that enemy, For this enemy hasn’t a mission Other than injuring me.
(9) No matter what happens, I shall never let it disturb my good mood. For if I’ve fallen into a foul mood, what I want will not come about, And my constructive behavior will fall apart.
(10) If it can be remedied, Why get into a foul mood over something? And if it can’t be remedied, What help is it to get into a foul mood over it?
(11) For myself and my friends, Suffering, contempt, verbal abuse, And disgrace aren’t things that I’d wish for; But for my enemies, it’s the reverse.
(12) The causes for happiness rarely occur, While the causes for sufferings are overly abundant. But, without any suffering, there wouldn’t be the determination to be free; Therefore, mind, you must think to be firm.
(13) If devotees of Durga and people of Karnata Pointlessly endure the torments of burning And cutting themselves, and the like, Then why am I such a coward for the sake of liberation?
(14) There isn’t anything that doesn’t become easier Once you’ve become accustomed to it; And so, by growing accustomed to minor pains, Greater pains will definitely become bearable.
(15) Don’t you see (this) with problems, (borne) without a (great) purpose, From snakes and mosquitoes, Discomforts such as hunger and thirst, As well as rashes and the like?
(16) (So,) I shall not be soft Regarding such things as heat and cold, rain and wind, Also sickness, captivity, beatings, and the like; For if I’ve acted like that, the injury is worse.
(17) There are some who, seeing their own blood, Develop exceptional courage and resolve; And there are some who, seeing the blood of others, Collapse and faint.
(18) That comes from their states of mind being Either of a resolute or a cowardly type. Therefore, I must be dismissive of pains And must not be thrown off by suffering.
(19) Even when he’s in agony, someone skilled Will never let the composure of his mind be stirred; And in a war that’s waged against disturbing emotions, Bruises abound, when fighting the battle.
(20) Those who, having been dismissive of suffering, Destroy the enemies, anger and so on, They are the heroes who have gained the victory; The rest (merely) slay corpses.
(21) Furthermore, there are advantages to suffering: With agony, arrogance disappears; Compassion grows for those in recurring samsara; Negative conduct is shunned; and joy is taken in being constructive.
(22) As I don’t get enraged With great sources of suffering, for instance with bile, Then why get enraged with those having limited minds? All of them, as well, are provoked by conditions.
(23) For example, without being wished for, Their sicknesses arise; And likewise, without being wished for, (Their) disturbing emotions also strongly arise.
(24) Without thinking, “I shall get enraged,” People just become enraged; And without thinking, “I shall arise,” Likewise, rage arises.
(25) All mistakes that there are And the various sorts of negative behavior – All arise from the force of conditions: There aren’t any under their own power.
(26) A collection of conditions Doesn’t have the intention, “I shall create”; And what it’s created didn’t have the intention, ”I’m to be created.”
(27) The darling (the Samkhyas) call “primal matter” And what they imagine to be “the self” – They don’t think with some purpose, “I shall come into being (to cause some harm),” And then come about.
(28) (In fact,) as they haven’t arisen, they do not exist, So what would have then had the wish to arise? And, since (a static sentient self) would be something that was permanently occupied with an object, It would never come to cease (being so).
(29) But if the self were static (and nonsentient, like Nyaya asserts), It would obviously be without actions, like the sky; So even if it met with other conditions, What activity could something unchangeable have?
(30) If even at the time of the action, it (remains) as before, What could have been done by it from the action? And if there were something called “This is its action,” Which is the one that made them connected?
(31) Thus, everything’s under the power of others, And the powers they’re under aren’t under their (own) power. Having understood this, I shall not become angry With any phenomenon – they’re like magic emanations.
(32) And if I said, then, “Warding off (anger) would indeed be unfitting, For who (or what) can ward off what?” I’d assert that it’s not unfitting, Since, by depending on that, the continuity of suffering can be cut.
(33) Thus, when seeing an enemy or even a friend Acting improperly, I’ll remain relaxed, Having reflected that it’s arising From some such condition as this.
(34) If all embodied beings had things Turn out as they liked, Then, since no one wishes ever to suffer, It would never come about that anyone suffered.
(35) People hurt even themselves With such things as thorns, because of not caring, And, in a rage, because of desiring to obtain women and the like,
With such acts as refusing food.
(36) There are some who destroy themselves By hanging themselves, jumping off cliffs, Eating poison and unhealthy foods, And through negative acts (bringing worse rebirth states).
(37) When people kill even their beloved selves From coming under the power of disturbing emotions, How can it be that they wouldn’t cause injury To the bodies of others?
(38) When I can’t even develop compassion, once in a while, For those like that, who, with disturbing emotions arisen, Would proceed to such things as killing themselves, At least I won’t get enraged (with them).
(39) (Even) if acting violently toward others Were the functional nature of infantile people, Still, it’d be as unfitting to get enraged with them As it would be for begrudging fire for its functional nature of burning.
(40) And even if this fault were fleeting instead, And limited beings were lovely by nature, Well, still it would be as unfitting to get enraged As it would be for begrudging the sky for the (pungent) smoke that was rising (in it).
(41) Having set aside the actual (cause of my pain), a staff or the like, If I become enraged with the person who wielded it, Well he, in fact, was incited by anger, so he’s secondary (too). It would be more fitting to get enraged with his anger.
(42) Previously, I must have inflicted Such pain on limited beings, Therefore, it’s fitting that harm comes to me, Who’ve been a cause of violence toward limited ones.
(43) Both his weapon and my body Are the causes of my suffering. Since he drew out a weapon and I a body, Toward which should I get enraged?
(44) Blinded by craving, I’ve grabbed hold of a painful boil That’s shaped like a human and can’t bear to be touched, And so when it’s bruised, Toward what should I get enraged?
(45) Childish me, I don’t wish to suffer And yet I’m obsessed with the cause of my suffering. Since it’s my own fault that I get hurt, Why have a grudge toward anyone (else)?
(46) It’s like, for example, the guards of the joyless realms And the forest of razor-sharp leaves: This (suffering too) is produced by my impulsive karmic behavior; So toward what should I be enraged?
(47) Incited by my own karmic behavior, Those who hurt me come my way, And if, by their (actions), these limited beings should fall to the joyless realms, Surely, wasn’t it I who have ruined them?
(48) Based on them, my negative karmic force Is greatly cleansed, because of my patience; But, based on me, they fall To the joyless realms, with long-lasting pain.
(49) Since I’m, in fact, causing harm to them, And they’re the ones who are benefiting me, Why, unreasonable mind, do you make it the reverse And get into a rage?
(50) If I have the advantage of wishing (to be patient), I won’t be going to a joyless realm; But although I’m safeguarding myself (in this way), What happens to them in this matter?
(51) And if I were to harm them back instead, They wouldn’t be safeguarded either, While my (other bodhisattva) behavior would also decline, And, consequently, those having trials would be lost.
(52) Because of its being immaterial, No one can destroy my mind, by any means; But because of its obsessive involvement with my body, It’s hurt by suffering (in connection) to the body.
(53) (Yet) Insults, cruel language, And defaming words Don’t hurt my body, So, why, O mind, do you become so enraged?
(54) Others’ dislike for me – That won’t devour me, Either in this life or in any other lifetime; So why do I find it undesirable?
(55) If I don’t wish for it Because it would hinder my material gain; Well, although my material gain in this life will have to be discarded, My negative karmic forces will remain secured.
(56) Death today would in fact be better for me Than long life through an improper livelihood; For even having lived a long time, there will still Be the suffering of death for someone like me.
(57) Someone who wakes up after having experienced A hundred years of happiness in a dream And another who wakes up after having experienced Just a moment of happiness:
(58) Once they’ve awakened, that happiness Doesn’t return, after all, to either of the two. (Similarly,) it comes down to exactly the same For someone who’s lived for long and someone who’s lived for a short while.
(59) Though I may have obtained great material gain And even have enjoyed many pleasures for long, I shall still go forth empty-handed and naked, Like having been robbed by a thief.
(60) Suppose I said, “While living off my material gain, I’d consume my negative karmic force and do positive things.” Well if, for the sake of material gain, I became enraged, Won’t my positive karmic force be consumed and negative karmic force come about?
(61) If the very purpose for which I am living Should fall apart, What use is there with a life Committing only negative deeds?
(62) Well, suppose I said, “Rage for someone who maligns (me) Is because it makes limited beings lose (their trust).” Well then, why don’t you get similarly enraged With someone defaming someone else?
(63) If you can tolerate distrust (when it’s for someone else), Because that lack of trust hinges on another;
Then why not be patient with someone who maligns (me), Since that hinges on disturbing emotions arising?
(64) Even toward those who revile and destroy Images, stupas, and the sacred Dharma, My anger’s improper, Since there can be no harm to Buddhas and the rest.
(65) And toward those who injure my spiritual teachers, My relatives and so on, and my friends as well, My rage will be averted, by having seen that This arises from conditions, as in the manner before.
(66) Since injury is inflicted on embodied beings By both those with a mind and things having no mind, Why single out and begrudge (only) those with a mind? Therefore, be patient with harm!
(67) Some commit misdeeds because of naivety, And, because of naivety, some get enraged: Which of them can we say is without fault, And which of them would be at fault?
(68) Why did you previously commit those impulsive actions, Because of which others now cause me harm? Since everything hinges on karmic behavior, Why do I bear a grudge against this one?
(69) Seeing it’s like that, I’ll put effort Into positive things in whatever way Whereby everyone will become Loving-minded toward each other.
(70) For example, when fire in a burning house Is advancing to another home, It’s fitting to remove and throw out Whatever it’s in that would cause it to spread, such as straw and the like.
(71) Likewise, when the fire of anger is spreading, Due to my mind being attached to something, I shall throw it out at that instant, For fear of my positive force being burned.
(72) Why would a man about to be put to death Be unfortunate if, by having his hand chopped off, he were spared? So why would I be unfortunate if, through human sufferings, I were spared joyless realms?
(73) If I’m unable to bear Even this minor suffering of the present, Then why don’t I ward off the rage That would be the cause of hellish pain?
(74) On account of my impassioned (rage), I’ve experienced burning and the like For thousands of times in the joyless realms; But (through it), I haven’t brought benefit to myself Or benefit for others.
(75) But, since great benefits will be brought about In this, which is not even a fraction of that damage, Only delight is appropriate here In the suffering dispelling (all) damage to wandering beings.
(76) If others obtain the pleasure of joy From praising someone (I dislike) who possesses good qualities, Why, O mind, don’t you make yourself joyous like this, By praising him too?
(77) That pleasure of joy of yours would be An arising of pleasure that was not disgraceful, Something permitted by the Ones with Good Qualities, And superlative, as well, for gathering others.
(78) If you wouldn’t like this pleasure of his, ”Such pleasure as that would be only his!” Then, from stopping (as well) giving wages and the like, (Your) ruin will come, both seen and unseen.
(79) When your own good qualities are being extolled, You wish others, as well, to take pleasure; But when others’ good qualities are being extolled, You don’t wish yourself to take pleasure too.
(80) Having developed a bodhichitta aim Through wishing for happiness for all limited beings, Then why do you become angry instead At the happiness that limited beings have found by themselves?
(81) (Having given your word) that you wish limited beings To have Buddhahood, honored throughout the three realms, Then why, when seeing them merely shown miserable respect, Do you burn up inside at it?
(82) If there were someone needing care Who’s to be cared for by you and provided for by you, And that family member were to get something to live on, Wouldn’t you be delighted, or would you be enraged in return?
(83) How could someone who doesn’t want (even) that for wandering beings Be anyone who wishes for them to be Buddhas? Where is there bodhichitta in someone Who becomes enraged at others’ gain?
(84) If, whether he receives it from him Or it remains in the benefactor’s house, It will in no way be yours, So what does it matter whether or not it’s given (to him)?
(85) Throw away your positive force or (others’) faith (in you), And even your own good qualities? For what? Don’t hold on to what could bring you gain? Tell me, with whom don’t you get enraged?
(86) Not only do you not feel sorry About the negative things you’ve done yourself, You wish to compete against others Who’ve enacted positive deeds?
(87) Even if your enemy lacks any joy, What’s there in that for you to take delight? The mere wish in your mind Won’t become the cause for (any) harm to him.
(88) And even if his suffering came about through your wish, Still, what’s there in that for you to take delight? If you said that you’d become gratified, Is there anything else more degenerate than that?
(89) This hook cast by the fishermen, the disturbing emotions, Is horrendously sharp. Procuring (you) from them, O mind, The joyless realm guards will cook me, for sure, In the cauldrons of hell.
(90) Praise and fame, (these) shows of respect, Won’t bring positive force, won’t bring a long life, Won’t bring bodily strength, nor freedom from sickness; They won’t bring physical pleasure either.
(91) If I were aware of what’s in my self-interest, What in my self-interest would there be in them? If just mental happiness were what I wanted, I should devote myself to gambling and so on, and to alcohol too.
(92) For the sake of fame, (people) would give away wealth Or would get themselves killed; But what use is there with words (of fame)? Once they’ve died, to whom will they bring pleasure?
(93) At the collapse of his sand castle, A child wails in despair; Similarly, at the loss of praise and fame, My mind shows the face of a child.
(94) Because an impromptu word is something lacking a mind, It’s impossible that it has the intention to praise me. But, proclaiming, “The other one (offering me praise) is delighted with me,” If I consider that a cause (also) to be delighted;
(95) Well, whether it’s toward someone else or toward me, What use to me is another person’s joy? That pleasure of joy is his alone; I won’t get (even) a share of it.
(96) If I take pleasure in his pleasure (with me), I must do like that in all cases, in fact. How is it that I don’t take pleasure When he has the pleasure of joy with another?
(97) So joy is arising in me (Simply due to), “Me, I’m being praised!” But there, in fact, because (thinking) like that is just nonsense, It comes down to nothing but the behavior of a child.
(98) Being praised and such things cause me distraction; They cause my disgust (with samsara) to disintegrate as well. I become jealous of those with good qualities, And that makes me demolish success.
(99) Therefore, aren’t those who are hovering close by For striking down praise and the like for me Actually involved in protecting me from falling Into a worse rebirth state?
(100) For me, whose primary interest is in gaining freedom, Bondage to material gain and shows of respect are things I mustn’t have. So how can I get enraged with those who are causing me To be freed from my having been bound?
(101) For me, who would enter into (a house) of suffering, How can I get enraged with those who’ve come, As if from Buddha’s inspiration, In the nature of a door panel not letting me pass in.
(102) “But this one is impeding my positive practices!” Still, it’s unfitting to be enraged with him. There isn’t any trial that’s equal to patience, So shouldn’t I be staying just close to that?
(103) If, in fact, it’s through my own fault That I’m not acting patiently here, Then while a cause for positive practice is biding nearby, It’s actually me who’s causing the impediment here.
(104) If there were something that wouldn’t come about if something were absent, But if something were present, would also be present, That very thing would be the cause of that, So how can it be said that it’s an impediment to it?
(105) There’s no impediment to giving caused by a mendicant (monk) Gone out (for alms) at the proper time; And it can’t be said that the coming of someone conferring vows Is an impediment for becoming a monastic.
(106) Alms-seekers are plentiful in this life, But scarce are those who cause (me) harm, Because no one will cause me harm If I haven’t harmed them like this (in past lives).
(107) Therefore, I shall be delighted with an enemy Who’s popped up like a treasure in my house, Without having had to be acquired with fatigue, Since he becomes my aide for bodhisattva behavior.
(108) It’s because of its having been actualized through this one and me (having met)
That a fruit of patience (comes about); (So,) let me award it first to him, For he was, like this, the (earlier) cause of my patience.
(109) Suppose I said, “But he had no intention for (me) to actualize patience, So this enemy isn’t someone to be honored.” Well, how is it that the hallowed Dharma is honored As suited to be a cause for actualizing (it)?
(110) Suppose I said, “But this enemy’s intention was to cause me harm, So he can’t be honored.” Well, how could patience be actualized by me If, like a doctor, he were intent on my benefit?
(111) Therefore, since patience arises dependently From his vicious intention, This one himself is fit to be honored like the hallowed Dharma, Because he’s a cause of my patience.
(112) Thus, the Sage has spoken of the field of limited beings As well as the field of the Triumphant, (For,) having made them happy, many have gone, thereby, To the far-shore of excellence.
(113) When the acquisition of a Buddha’s Dharma (attainments) Is equally due to (both) limited beings and the Triumphant, What kind of order is it that the respect shown to limited beings Is not like that to the Triumphant?
(114) The preeminence of an intention is not from itself, But due to its result, and by that, the preeminence Of that which is had by limited beings is, in fact, the same; And because of that, they are equal.
(115) Whatever is honored in having a loving intention (toward them), That, in fact, is the greatness (coming) from limited beings; And whatever positive force there is in confident belief in the Buddhas, That, in fact, is the greatness from the Buddhas.
(116) It’s the share they have in actualizing a Buddha’s Dharma (attainments), And because of that, they’re asserted as their equals; But, of course, no one can be the equal of the Buddhas In endless oceans of excellent qualities.
(117) If even a speck of the excellent qualities Of the unique syntheses of the best excellent qualities Were to be seen somewhere, an offering of the three planes of existence Would be inadequate for honoring it.
(118) Since a share giving rise to a Buddha’s Foremost Dharma (attainments) exists in limited beings, It’s fitting that limited beings be honored, In accordance with this very share.
(119) Further, besides making limited beings happy, What other repayment is there For those who befriend them without pretension And help them beyond any measure?
(120) Since it would repay them to benefit those for whose sake They sacrifice their bodies and plunge into joyless realms of unrelenting pain, Then even if these (limited beings) should cause great harm, Everything wholesome is to be done (for them).
(121) For the sake of even, in this case, my master himself, They disregard even their own bodies. So how can I, bewildered about this, act with pride And not act in the nature of a servant?
(122) The Sages delight in their happiness And enter into distress at their injury; And so, in (my) bringing them joy, the Sages will all have become delighted, And in bringing them harm, the Sages will have been hurt.
(123) Just as there could be no mental pleasure from desirable objects For someone whose body were completely on fire, Likewise, there’s no way to delight the Greatly Compassionate Ones When limited beings have, in fact, been harmed.
(124) Therefore, whatever displeasure I’ve brought to all the Greatly Compassionate Ones, By my having caused harm to limited beings, I openly admit, today, that negative deed, And request the Sages, please bear with that displeasure you have.
(125) From now on, for the sake of delighting the Thusly Gone (Buddhas), I shall act, with definite restraint, as a servant to the world. Let mobs of people kick me in the head with their feet or even beat me to death, I shall not venture (anything back). Let the Guardians of the World take delight!
(126) There’s no doubt that Those with a Compassion Self-Nature Have taken all wandering beings (to be the same) as themselves. The very nature they’ve seen as the essential nature of limited beings Is those Guardians’ self-nature, so why don’t I show (them the same) respect?
(127) Just this, is what brings pleasure to the Thusly Gone (Buddhas); Just this, is what perfectly accomplishes my own aims as well; Just this, is what dispels the world’s suffering too; Therefore, let it be just this, that I always shall do.
(128) For example, even when some member of the royal court Is harming the public, Farsighted people do not hurt him back Even if they’re able,
(129) For that one, (acting) like this, is not alone: On the contrary, the king’s power and might are his military forces. Likewise, some lowly person creating harm Is not to be belittled,
(130) For his armed forces are the guards of the joyless realms And all the Compassionate Ones. So, like a commoner toward a violent king, I shall make all limited beings be pleased.
(131) Should even such a king be enraged (with me), Could he inflict the pain of a joyless realm, Which is what I’d be brought to experience By having made limited beings displeased?
(132) Should even such a king be pleased (with me), It’s impossible that he could bestow Buddhahood, Which is what I’d be brought to attain By having made limited beings be pleased.
(133) (Leave aside) seeing that the future attainment of Buddhahood Arises from making limited beings be pleased, Don’t you see that, at least in this life, great prosperity, Fame, and happiness come?
(134) (Moreover), with beauty and so on, freedom from sickness, and fame, Someone with patience, while still in samsara, Gains extremely long life and the abundant pleasures Of a universal chakra king.
7. Joyful Perseverance
(1) Patient like that, I need to embrace joyful perseverance, Since (based) on perseverance, enlightenment takes place. After all, without joyful perseverance, there’s no arising of positive force, Just as, without wind, there’s no motion.
(2) What’s joyful perseverance? It’s zestful vigor for being constructive. Its opposing factors are explained as lethargy, clinging to what’s negative (or petty), And, from being discouraged, disparaging oneself.
(3) Lethargy arises From apathy about the problems of recurring samsara, (Which comes) through relishing a taste of pleasure from idleness And through craving sleep as a haven. (4) Sniffed out by the trapper, the disturbing emotions, And fallen into the trap of rebirth, How do you still not realize That you’ve landed in the mouth of the lord of death?
(5) Don’t you even see that he’s slaughtering The members of your herd, each in turn? Yet despite being like a buffalo at the butcher, You even go to sleep!
(6) With the road blocked everywhere And eyeballed by the lord of death, How can eating bring you joy? How can sleeping? How can making love?
(7) So stock up on a bountiful store (of positive force) while you can, For death will come all too soon. Even by throwing off lethargy then, What can you accomplish when out of time?
(8) With this still not done, this just having been started, This still left half-done, And the lord of death having come all of a sudden, And the thought arising, “Oh no, I’m destroyed!”
(9) And seeing relatives, Their faces with red eyes swollen from the force of grief And flowing with tears, having lost all hope, And also the faces of the messengers of Yama,
(10) Tormented by the memory of negative acts, Hearing the screams from the joyless realms, Body befouled with excrement because of fear – Having become delirious, what will you do?
(11) If, like a live fish flopping, (about to be cooked,) You’d have (such) terror in this lifetime; Is there need to mention the unbearable tortures Of the joyless realms, when having created (so much) negative force?
(12) Baby-skin! Even at the touch of hot water, you’re scalded! How can you sit back at ease like this, Doing karmic deeds for a joyless realm (rebirth)?
(13) Dreamer of results without any effort! Weakling! Waster of plenitude! Seized by death and having the airs of an (immortal) god! Oh dear! With these miserable ways, you’re destroying yourself!
(14) Seated in a boat (now) of a human rebirth, Cross over the mighty river of suffering! With this boat being so hard to catch again, Idiot, it’s not time for going to sleep!
(15) Letting go of the joy of the hallowed Dharma – The best, an unending fount of joy – How can you find any joy in such causes for suffering As shenanigans, joking, and the like?
(16) (So,) don’t get discouraged, amass the supporting forces, Readily accept, and take control of yourself, Then equalize self and others, And exchange self for others, too.
(17) Never get discouraged by thinking, ”How can there be enlightenment for me?” For the Speaker of Truth, the Thusly Gone (Buddha), Has pronounced this truth, like this:
(18) “Even those who’ve become gnats, mosquitoes, Hornets, and worms likewise too, Shall attain unsurpassable enlightenment, so hard to attain, By generating the force of zestful vigor.”
(19) (How much more so for) someone like me, having (Buddha) nature and born as a human, Able to perceive what’s of benefit or harm! Why shouldn’t I reach enlightenment, So long as I don’t quit bodhisattva behavior?
(20) Suppose I said, “But it frightens me That my arms, legs, and so on are to be given away.” Well, I’m being reduced to fear by a state of bewilderment, From failing to discern what’s heavy or light.
(21) For countless millions of eons, I’ll be gashed, stabbed, burned, and split open Innumerable times, And still won’t attain enlightenment;
(22) But this suffering I’ll have In achieving enlightenment is something with a limit, Like the pain from an incision made on my body To remove the harm from a foreign object festering inside.
(23) All doctors, in fact, bring freedom from sickness Through the discomforts of medical treatments; So a little discomfort must be endured To kill off a plague of sufferings.
(24) Yet, the Foremost Physician hasn’t offered The usual healing treatments like these; But rather, cures countless chronic afflictions With an extremely gentle procedure.
(25) As a start, the Spiritual Guide prescribes Giving away a vegetable and the like. Once accustomed to that, one may eventually, through stages, Come to give away even one’s own flesh.
(26) When the insight arises that my very own body Is similar to a vegetable and the like, Then, as for giving away such things as my flesh, What hardship would there be in that?
(27) (After all,) from purging negative karmic force,
there’ll be no more suffering, And from becoming mentally proficient,
there won’t be any more mental distress; But similarly, from distorted conceptions, the mind gets hurt, And from negative force, the body.
(28) Through positive force, though, the body has joy, And with mental proficiency, the mind becomes joyful. So even remaining in recurring samsara for the sake of others, What could depress a compassionate one?
(29) Because the strength of his bodhichitta aim Is depleting his negative forces from the past And gathering oceans of positive force, He’s explained as surpassing the shravaka listeners.
(30) So, mounting the horse of the bodhichitta aim, Which dispels all depression and exhaustion, And journeying from joy to joy, Who, with a sensible mind, would ever become discouraged?
(31) (Thus,) the supporting forces for fulfilling the aims of limited beings Are strong intention, steadfastness, delight, and letting go. Strong intention is developed from the dread of suffering And by reflecting on its benefits.
(32) Uprooting opposing factors like that, I shall strive then to further my zestful vigor With the forces of strong intention, having pride, delight, and letting go, Also readily accepting and taking control.
(33) But the faults of both myself and others That I’ll need to vanquish are boundless! And when the depletion of each individual fault Will take oceans of eons,
(34) And even a fraction of that initiative For depleting those faults can’t be seen yet in me, Then how is it that my heart doesn’t burst At the fathomless sufferings that I’ll need to endure?
(35) The excellent features, for both myself and others, That I’ll need to actualize are also enormous! And there, when the repeated practice for each individual feature Will take oceans of eons,
(36) And I’ve never developed the repeated practice For even a fraction of the excellent features, It’s amazing how I’ve rendered meaningless This rebirth somehow attained!
(37) I’ve not made offerings to the Vanquishing Master, Nor provided the joy of magnificent feasts; I’ve done no services for the teachings, Nor fulfilled the hopes of the poor!
(38) I’ve given no freedom from fear to the frightened, Nor offered comfort to those in distress! It comes down to all that I have produced Is only discomfort, and the pain (of an alien object) in the womb for my mother!
(39) (Since) such a poor mess has come about Through my lacking a strong intention for the Dharma In former lives and now, Who would ever give up strong intention for the Dharma?
(40) The Sage has chimed, “A strong intention is the root Of every constructive facet.” And the root of that is constantly having meditated on The ripened results (of karma):
(41) Pain, foul moods, and assorted forms of fear, And being parted from what I would like, Come about from behaving With negative karmic force.
(42) (Consider this:) by enacting the constructive deeds That my mind has intended, Wherever I’m reborn, I’ll be honored, through their positive force, With an oblation as the karmic result. (43) But by enacting negative deeds, Though I wish for happiness, Wherever I’m reborn, I’ll be assaulted, through their negative karmic force, By weapons of pain.
(44) By constructive behavior, I’ll come to stay in the presence of the Triumphant as a spiritual child of the Blissfully Gone, With a superb body, born from a lotus opened by the splendor of the Sage, And dwelling in the heart of a spacious, fragrant, cool lotus, My radiance shall grow with nourishment from the Triumphant’s melodious voice.
(45) But, by serial destructive behavior, I’ll fall onto a fiercely flaming iron ground, Horribly tortured by Yama’s henchmen, ripping off my entire skin, Pouring into my body molten copper liquified by enormous heat, Stabbing me with flaming swords and daggers, and rending my flesh into hundreds of bits.
(46) Hence, I shall set a strong intention to (do) what’s constructive And make it a habit, with regard. Undertaking it, then, I’ll make it a habit of having pride, Through the lines in the Vajradhvaja (Sutra).
(47) Examining my talents first, To undertake (something) or not undertake it, It’s better not to undertake it at all – Not to start it and then turn back.
(48) For that turns into a habit in future lives too And causes negative force and suffering to increase; While other (undertakings) and the time for their results Are weakened and do not succeed.
(49) Actions, disturbing emotions, and abilities – Pride is to be applied regarding the three. ”It’s something that I myself shall do” Is having pride regarding actions.
(50) Worldly beings, not under their own power, Due to disturbing emotions, are unable to accomplish their very own aims. But I’m not incapable, like wandering beings, So I’ll do this (for them).
(51) How can I stand by While someone else is doing an inferior job? If it’s because of being proud that I’m not doing it (instead), Then best to let pride be exterminated in me.
(52) Even a crow makes itself act like an eagle When encountering a snake that’s already dead. But if I remain timid, Even the slightest setback impairs me.
(53) Discouraged and having given up effort, Will there be liberation due to feeling bankrupt, or what? But by strengthening my effort through having my pride, Even huge things will have difficulty triumphing (over me).
(54) Therefore, with my mind steadfast, I shall set back setbacks. For if setbacks bankrupt me, My wishing to triumph over the three realms becomes a joke.
(55) I shall triumph over everything And nothing shall triumph over me! As a spiritual offspring of the Triumphant Lion, I shall maintain this pride.
(56) Wandering beings conquered by pride Are disturbed: they have no pride; For those having pride don’t fall under the enemy’s power, But instead, have power over the enemy, pride.
(57) Filled up with the disturbing emotion of pride, They’re led by pride to the worse rebirth states, And even as humans, their festivity is killed; They become slaves, eating the scraps of others,
(58) Stupid, ugly, feeble, And insulted in all (situations).
If filled up with pride, those having trials Are also included among those having pride, Then what kind of pathetic beings are they, tell me please?
(59) But those who hold on to their pride in order to triumph over the enemy, pride, Are the holders of pride, the triumphant heroes. And those who kill off the enemy, pride, even though it’s gargantuan, Bestow then the fruit of triumph in full on wandering beings, whatever they wish.
(60) So, when standing amidst a horde of disturbing emotions, I shall hold my ground (proudly), in a thousand ways, And not be thrown off by the pack of disturbing emotions, Like a lion with jackals and such.
(61) Just as a person would protect his eyes When events of great danger actually arise; Likewise, I’ll never fall under the power of disturbing emotions, When danger actually arises.
(62) Let me be burned to death, Or even have my head chopped off, that would be better; But I’ll never, in any way, Bow to the enemy, disturbing emotions.
Likewise, in all situations, I shall never do anything other than what’s fit.
(63) Like someone wishing for happiness as the result of play, Any (positive) actions (a bodhisattva’s) engaged in, He clings to those actions And delights in those actions, never having enough.
(64) Although people do actions for the sake of happiness, It’s not clear that they’ll become happy or not; But for (a bodhisattva) whose actions in fact bring happiness, How can he be happy without doing those actions?
(65) If there can never be enough desirable sensory objects, Though they’re like honey on a razor’s edge, How can there ever be enough (ambrosia of) positive actions, Which have as their ripening (sweet) happiness and peace?
(66) So, after completing a positive action, I’ll plunge into the action (that’s next), right then, Like an elephant parched by the midday sun, When encountering a pond, plunging into the water.
(67) But, following upon a decline in my strength, I’ll set (my activity) aside, to take up again; And having completed it well, I shall leave it, With thirst for the next and the next.
(68) Then, like engaging a sword in a duel With a seasoned opponent, I shall parry the disturbing emotions’ thrusts, And decisively stab my opponent, the disturbing emotions.
(69) Just as someone, having dropped his sword in a duel, Would snatch it up quickly, out of fear, So, having dropped the sword of mindfulness, I shall quickly snatch it up, mindful of the fears of the joyless realms.
(70) Just as poison on (the blade of a sword, finding) blood as its carrier, Spreads throughout the body, Similarly, a fault, when finding an opening, Spreads throughout the mind.
(71) Like a terrified person, carrying a jar filled with mustard oil, With someone keeping in front, poking with a sword, Threatening to kill him if he spills (a drop), Someone with taming behavior needs likewise to hold on tight.
(72) Therefore, just as I’d swiftly stand up At the slithering of a snake into my lap, Likewise, at the slithering in of sleepiness or lethargy, I shall swiftly repulse it.
(73) Scolding myself on each and every occasion of a lapse, I shall contemplate at length, ”How can I act so that never again Will this happen to me?”
(74) With this as a motive, “How can I make it a habit To be mindful, given those situations?” I’ll aspire for the company (of spiritual teachers) Or the appropriate action (that they give me to do).
(75) Then, the way to have force for all (events), Before doing some action, is That I’ll rally and invigorate myself, Recalling the chapter on taking care.
(76) Just as the wind, coming and going, Takes control of a cotton ball, So shall I take control of myself, with zestful vigor, And gain, in this way, spiritual success.
8. Far-Reaching Mental Stability
(1) Having increased my zestful vigor like that, I shall set my mind in absorbed concentration; Since a person having a distracted mind Is set between the fangs of disturbing emotions.
(2) Through dissociating (both my) body and mind, There’ll be no occurrence of any distraction; Therefore, I’ll set aside worldly concerns And bring my rambling thought to a halt.
(3) Worldly concerns are not discarded Because of sticky attachments and thirst for material gain and the like; Therefore, to set these things aside, Someone with knowledge would discern like this:
(4) “An exceptionally perceptive state of mind, joined onto a stilled and settled state, Completely destroys the disturbing emotions.” Having understood this, first I shall seek a stilled and settled mind; And that’s achieved through delight in detachment from worldly concerns.
(5) (After all,) any impermanent person Having sticky attachment to impermanent beings Won’t see those loved ones again (after death) For many thousands of lives. (6) Not seeing them, I’ll be unhappy And my mind won’t settle in absorbed concentration; Even if I’ve seen them, I’ll never be satisfied, And, as before, I’ll be tormented by longing.
(7) From being attached to limited beings, I’m blocked from (seeing) things as they are; I lose any sense of disillusionment too; And, in the end, I’m tormented by grief.
(8) Because of thinking only of them, This life will pass without any meaning, And through noneternal friends and relations, I will come to lose the eternal Dharma.
(9) Having acted equal to the lot of infantile people, I’ll surely go to a worse rebirth state; If I’m led to a lot that’s not (even) equal, Then what have I gained by relying on those infantile folk?
(10) One moment, they’re friends; In an instant, they’re enemies. At a time for being delighted, they fall into a rage: Ordinary beings are so difficult to please.
(11) Told what’s of benefit, they get enraged And cause me to turn from what’s of benefit too. But, if their words aren’t listened to, They fall into a rage and go, then, to a worse rebirth state.
(12) They’re envious of superiors, competitive with equals, Arrogant toward inferiors, conceited when praised, And hateful when told what they don’t want to hear: When is there benefit from infantile beings?
(13) If I associate with infantile people, Then destructive behavior inevitably arises among infantile folk, Such as praising myself and belittling others, And prattling on about the pleasures of samsara.
(14) From entrusting myself to others in this way, Nothing but loss comes about in the end, For they’ll be, in fact, no-good for me And I’ll be, in fact, no-good for them.
(15) So let me flee far away from infantile folk; But if encountered, I’ll please them with pleasantries, And without becoming overly familiar, I’ll conduct myself nicely, merely as an ordinary person would.
(16) Obtaining only what’s helpful for Dharma, Like a bumblebee honey from a flower, I’ll live without having familiars, Like having never seen any of them before.
(17) “But I get a lot of material gain and honor, And many people like me.” If I hold on to being conceited like that, Terrifying things will arise after death.
(18) Thus, no matter what my bewildered mind Becomes attached to; In conjunction with each of them, Thousandfold problems arise and stay around.
(19) Hence, the wise have no attachments, (Because,) from attachments, terrifying things arise. As these (objects) will naturally be discarded (at death), Be firm and consider this well:
(20) There’ve been many people with material wealth And there’ve been many with fame and reputation. But it’s never been known that they’ve passed on to some place Where their amassed wealth and fame have come with.
(21) If there are others who belittle me, What pleasure is there when I’m being praised? And if there are others who praise me, What displeasure is there when I’m being belittled?
(22) If limited beings, with varied dispositions, Couldn’t be pleased by even the Triumphant, What need to mention by the poor likes of me? Therefore, let me give up my preoccupation with worldly people.
(23) They belittle limited beings lacking material gain, And, regarding those with material gain, they say bad things; How can any pleasure arise with those Whose company is, by nature, so difficult?
(24) The Thusly Gone (Buddha) has said, ”An infantile person isn’t anyone’s friend,” That’s because the friendliness of an infantile person Doesn’t arise except through its serving his own self-aims.
(Friendliness through the gateway of its serving self-aims, Is friendliness just for the aims of a “self”; Just as distress at the breaking of some material possession Is something, in fact, that comes from a loss of self-pleasure.)
(25) In forests, however, wild creatures, birds, and trees Never say bad things about you And are happy when befriended. When shall I come to live with them?
(26) Oh when shall I become detached, Living in caves, an empty shrine, Or at the foot of a tree, And never look back?
(27) When shall I come to live in nature, In vast regions, not privately owned, Moving under my own incentive or Staying put, without attachment.
(28) When shall I come to live without fears, Having (just a few) small things, a (clay) begging bowl and the like, Wearing clothes that no one would want, And not even sheltering this body?
(29) When, having gone to a charnel ground, Shall I come to compare, With the piles of others’ bones, My body, having the nature to rot.
(30) This very body of mine Will also become (putrid) like that, And because of its stench, Not even the jackals will slink near.
(31) Though this body was born as a single object, The flesh and bones that arose with it Will fall apart and go their own ways. What need to mention friends that are other (than it)?
(32) A man is born alone, when taking birth, And dies alone too, when undergoing death. As no one else can take a share of this pain, What can be done by encumbering friends?
(33) Just as the way in which travelers on a road Take up a place to lodge, Similar is the way in which travelers on the road of compulsive existence Take up a rebirth as a place to lodge.
(34) So, let me retire to the forest Until four pallbearers Haul that body out from there, While all my worldly (relations) grieve.
(35) Let this body stay there in isolation, alone, Making neither intimate friends nor conflicts. If I’m already counted as if I were dead, There’ll be no mourners when I actually die.
(36) As there’ll be no attendants (hovering) nearby, Mourning and causing distress, There’ll be no one to distract this (hermit) From continuing mindfulness of Buddha and more.
(37) So, let me live in solitude In lovely, delightful forests, With little trouble, happiness and well-being, Quieting all distractions.
(38) Having cast off all other intentions, And with my intent single-pointed, I shall strive (there) for settling my mind in absorbed concentration And making it tamed;
(39) (For) lustful desires give rise to disasters In this world and in the next ones as well. In this one, they bring about murder, imprisonment, and knifings, And in the next, joyless realms and the like.
(40) Those (bodies) for which sake, you repeatedly begged Before male and female go-betweens, And for which sake, you didn’t shrink From either negative behavior or disgrace,
(41) (For which) you threw yourself even in danger And even spent all your wealth, And embracing which, You experienced the utmost pleasure (of sexual release) –
(42) They were nothing but skeletons, Independent, and never yours! Why not push on, (instead,) to nirvanic release, Which you can fully embrace to your heart’s content?
(43) That face, which, (at your wedding,) you lifted up first with effort and drew near, Although it was bashfully looking down, And whether previously seen or not seen (by you), Was covered with a veil,
(44) That face, which emotionally disturbed you so, Is now unveiled by the vultures And can be directly seen. Why do you run away now?
(45) That (face) which you protected (before) From the leers of others’ eyes, Why aren’t you protecting it now, (jealous) miser, While it’s being devoured by them?
(46) Seeing this pile of meat Being gulped down by vultures and the rest, (Tell me), is the food of others something to be offered With garlands of flowers, jewelry, and sandalwood scent?
(47) If you (experience) fright from seeing even a skeleton, Though it lacks any movement, Why wasn’t there horror when it was set into motion By some (intent), like a zombie.
(48) You lusted after it, even when it was covered, Why don’t you lust for it (now), when uncovered (from its skin)? If you have no use for it (now), Why did you sexually embrace it when covered?
(49) Its excrement and saliva Arise from one and the same food; So why, out of the two, do you take no delight in the excrement And yet delight in (a taste of) saliva?
(50) Finding no sexual pleasure in pillows, Filled with cotton and soft to the touch, (After all) “They don’t exude a foul stench,” Lustful people are bewildered about excrement.
(51) Lustful, gross, bewildered people, (Thinking,) “It’s impossible to make love To cotton, soft to the touch,” Become furious with it (instead).
(52) If you have no attachment for what is foul, Why do you sexually embrace another (body): A cagework of bones, bound together with sinews, And plastered over with a mud of flesh?
(53) You yourself contain plenty of excrement, So manage by yourself, steadfastly with that. Glutton for excrement, You long for yet another bag of excrement?
(54) (Thinking,) “But it’s the flesh I delight in,” You long to touch and look at it. But why have you no desire for the flesh (Here,) in its natural state, devoid of a mind?
(55) And whatever mind you might desire, Cannot be touched or looked at, And whatever can, hasn’t a consciousness. So it’s no use! Why do you sexually embrace it?
(56) Though it’s no great surprise that you don’t understand That another’s body, by nature, is something (full of) excrement; But that you don’t understand that your very own Is, by nature, something (full of) excrement – that’s really shocking!
(57) Having rejected the tender lotus, (born from the muck And) opened by the rays of the unclouded sun, What delight is there in a cagework (of bones, full) of feces, For a mind obsessed with excrement?
(58) If you don’t wish to touch soil and places That are smeared with excrement, How is it that you wish to touch the body Out of which it was excreted?
(59) If you have no attachment for what is foul, Why do you sexually embrace another (body): The seed of which grew from a field (full) of excrement And was nourished by it.
(60) Is it because of its tininess that you don’t long For a foul maggot, born from excrement? You desire, in fact, a body, also born from excrement, (Since) by nature, it’s (full) of a lot of excrement!
(61) Not only do you not disparage The excremental nature of yourself, You glutton for excrement, You long for other bags of excrement too!
(62) Whether it’s refreshing (chews) with camphor and the like, Or cooked rice with vegetable curries, Once put in the mouth and then spat out or vomited, Even the ground becomes filthy and foul.
(63) If you still have doubts about its being, like this, In the nature of excrement, though it’s so obvious, Look at the (ghastly) foul bodies of others, Thrown away in the charnel ground.
(64) When the skin is torn open, Great horror comes up from it. Knowing just that, how can delight Come up any more from that very same thing?
(65) And that smell sloshed on the body Is from sandalwood and such things, not from the other (person). So why are you attracted to someone else By the smell of something other?
(66) If, because of its naturally foul smell, There’s no attraction to it, isn’t that fortunate? Why do people in this world, who relish what’s useless, Slosh it with sweet smelling things?
(67) Well then, if what has the sweet smell is sandalwood, What comes from the body in this case? So why are you attracted to someone else By the smell of something other?
(68) If the natural state of the body is totally horrific – Naked, coated with a tarnish of grime, Its hair and nails long, Its teeth yellow and stained –
(69) Why spruce it up with (so much) hard work, Like a weapon for inflicting self-harm? (Oh dear,) this world is truly bustling with madmen Working so hard deluding themselves!
(70) Having seen merely a few skeletons, You were so turned off in the charnel ground; Yet you find sexual pleasure in charnel-ground cities Crowded with moving skeletons?
(71) Further, that (bag) full of excrement like that Isn’t obtained without a price: There’s exhaustion in earning (money) for its sake And torment (later) in joyless realms and the like.
(72) It’s not possible to build up wealth as a child, So as a teenager, what is there to get pleasure with? Spending adulthood accumulating wealth, What can an old person do with sexual desires?
(73) Some people, (though) having gross desires, Exhaust themselves with work all day long And, coming home (at night), their bodies spent, Drop down asleep like the dead.
(74) Some must go abroad (on army expeditions) And, with disturbing emotions, have the suffering of being far away. Longing for their children and wives, they don’t see Their children and wives, though the years roll by.
(75) Confused by desires for what would be of self-benefit, They even sell themselves for the sake of that Which they never obtain, and so (toil) pointlessly, Driven by the winds of others’ karmic whims.
(76) And the wives of some of those who have sold their own bodies And must follow others’ orders, powerlessly, Have to give birth to their children, with them plopping out At the feet of trees or in desolate places.
(77) (Some) foolish people, deceived by desires, Wishing to make a livelihood, thinking, “I’ll earn a living,” Enter into war, (thus) risking their lives, Or go into servitude for the sake of self-gain.
(78) Some, having greed, are even bodily mutilated And some get impaled on spikes. Some are seen being stabbed with daggers And some even burned alive.
(79) With the torments (involved) in amassing, protecting, and losing it, Know that material advantage is a disadvantage without an end: (For) those distracted by obsession with wealth Haven’t the time to free themselves from the sufferings of compulsive existence.
(80) (Thus,) for those with desire, drawbacks like these and more are abundant And (any) tastes of pleasure are paltry, Like the snatches of a few mouthfuls of grass (Won) by an ox while pulling a cart.
(81) For the sake of that paltry taste of pleasure, Not hard to find for even an ox, This hard-to-find splendor of respites and endowments Is destroyed by those who waste their (good) karma.
(82) Whatever hardships there are in exhausting yourself All the time for the sake of the puny desires (of the body) That will definitely perish and (consequently) Fall to joyless realms and worse,
(83) With one millionth of the hardship, there would be Buddhahood; Whereas those with desires have suffering Greater than those engaged in bodhisattva behavior, And yet they have no enlightenment.
(84) Neither weapons, poison, fire, Precipices, nor foes Compare with desires when I think Of the tortures of joyless realms and the like.
(85) Recoiling from desires in this way, I shall enhance my delight in solitude. In peaceful forests, Devoid of strife and emotional disturbance,
(86) Amongst (beautiful) boulders, Huge as palaces, cooled by the sandalwood rays of the moon, Joyfully roam the fortunate ones, fanned by the silent, gentle, forest breezes, Reflecting on the aims of benefiting others.
(87) Staying anywhere, for as long as desired – In an empty shelter, at the foot of a tree, or in caves – Those rid of the strain of safeguarding possessions Live relaxed, without any cares,
(88) Acting according to their own intent, Without attachments, not bound by anyone, Savoring the joy of contentment, Difficult to find for even powerful rulers.
(89) Having considered, with aspects such as these and more, The benefits of dissociating (myself), And thus fully quieting my rambling thoughts, I shall meditate on bodhichitta.
(90) First, I shall meditate strongly on The equality of myself and others (in this way): As everyone’s a fellow being, having happiness and pain, (Others) are to be cared for (by me) in the same way as I am.
(91) Just as, despite its many parts, with divisions into hands and so on, The body’s to be cared for as a whole; Similarly, despite the differences among wandering beings, Yet in regard to happiness and pain, they’re all equal to myself in wishing to be happy, and (thus form) a whole.
(92) Although my own pain Doesn’t hurt the bodies of others, Yet being, like that, the pain of a “me,” It’s unbearable, because of clinging to a “me.”
(93) Likewise, though the pain of others Doesn’t befall me, Yet being, like that, the pain of a “me,” It’s (also) difficult to bear, because of clinging to a “me.”
(94) Thus, the pain of others is something to be eliminated by me, Because of its (nature as) pain, like the pain of a “me”; And others are beings to be helped by me, Because of their (natures as) limited beings, like the body of a “me.”
(95) When happiness is something equally liked, Both by myself and others, What’s so special about me That I strive after happiness for myself alone?
(96) And when suffering is something equally disliked, Both by myself and others, What’s so special about me That I take care of myself and not others?
(97) If it’s because their suffering doesn’t harm me That I don’t safeguard them, Why safeguard myself against future (life) suffering, If it doesn’t harm me (now)?
(98) That notion is distorted that thinks, ”But I’m the one who’ll experience it,” For, like this, it’s someone else who has died And someone else who takes birth.
(99) If whatever suffering anyone has Must be taken care of by that one himself, Then since the foot’s suffering is not the hand’s, Why is that to be taken care of by it?
(100) If it’s the case that (ignoring) it would be illogical And so here it’s undertaken from a sense of a (whole) self; Well then, surely what’s illogical regarding (the whole formed by) myself and others Is something to be dismissed, as much as I can.
(101) What are called “a continuum” and “a group,” Such as a rosary, an army, and the like, are not truly (a findable whole), And so, since a possessor of suffering doesn’t exist, Whose responsibility is it (as “mine”)?
(102) In their being without an owner, All sufferings lack a distinction: So it’s (simply) because they’re suffering that they’re to be averted. Why are there fixed (limitations) made here?
(103) “But why is the suffering of everyone to be averted?” Well, it’s indisputable: If (anyone’s) is to be averted, then everyone’s is to be averted; If not, (that applies) to me as well, just like to (every other) limited being.
(104) “But with compassion there’s much suffering, So why develop it with (such) effort?” Well, having thought about the sufferings of wandering beings, How could the suffering of compassion be much?
(105) If the suffering of many disappears Through the suffering of one, That suffering would be something that someone with loving compassion Would bring on, for the sake of himself and others.
(106) Thus Supushpa-chandra, Though knowing the punishment (he’d receive) from the king, Didn’t avoid the suffering for himself In order to dispel the sufferings of many.
(107) Those with mental continuums accustomed like this, And who (hold equally) dear quelling the sufferings of others, Plunge themselves into even (a joyless realm of) unrelenting pain Like a swan into a lotus pond.
(108) And then, as limited beings are liberated, they have oceans of joy: These are the ones (who’ve gained real fulfillment). Wouldn’t that be sufficient? What is there with the wish for (insipid) liberation?
(109) Thus, even though working for the benefit of others, There’s no conceit; there’s no amazement; There’s no hoping for a ripened result (for oneself), When it’s with an appetite exclusively for what benefits others.
(110) Therefore, just as I safeguard myself Against becoming debased, to the tiniest extent, Likewise, I shall act like that toward others With a protective mind and a mind of compassion.
(111) Just as, out of familiarity, There’s an understanding of a “me” Regarding drops of semen and blood belonging to others, Despite it’s not existing as some “thing,”
(112) Why couldn’t I likewise take as “me” A body that belongs to someone else? (After all,) it’s not difficult to set it, in the same way, As something other than a body that’s “mine.”
(113) (So,) having understood the faultiness of (cherishing) myself And the oceans of advantages of (cherishing) others, I shall meditate on discarding my way Of taking a “me,” and extend it to others.
(114) Just as the hand and so on are held dear Through their being the limbs of the body, Why couldn’t beings having a body be similarly held dear Through their being limbs of wandering life?
(115) Just as, out of familiarity, an attitude of “me” Has come about with respect to this body (of mine), despite its lacking a “me,” Likewise, out of familiarity, why couldn’t an attitude of “me” Arise with respect to other limited beings as well?
(116) Even though working, like that, for the benefit of others, Amazement or conceit doesn’t arise: It’s like the hope for a reward doesn’t arise From feeding food to myself.
(117) Therefore, just as I safeguard myself Against becoming debased, to the tiniest extent, Likewise, I’ll habituate myself to having A protective mind and a mind of compassion toward (all) wandering beings.
(118) That’s why, out of great compassion, the Guardian Avalokiteshvara Has elevated even (the power of) his own name To dispel the fears of wandering beings, (Such as shyness) in front an audience.
(119) So, I shall not turn away from what’s difficult to do, Since, through the force of familiarity like this, That very person whose name I was even afraid to hear (Can become) someone, without whom, I can have no joy.
(120) Thus, anyone who wishes to give safe direction Swiftly to himself and others Needs to practice the most sacred secret: The exchange of self with others.
(121) Because of sticky attachment to this body as “me, ” From even small situations for fear, fear arises. So who wouldn’t reject, like a fear-inspiring foe, Such a body (as “me”)?
(122) (This) body, which, with the wish to remedy Afflictions such as hunger, thirst, and the like, Kills fowl, fish, and deer And hides by the road in ambush (to steal),
(123) And which, because of profit and shows of respect, Would murder even its father and mother, And, by stealing the property of the Triple Gem, Would burn in (a joyless realm of) unrelenting pain –
(124) What wise man would desire, protect, And venerate such a body (as “me”)? Who wouldn’t view it as a foe And not scorn it?
(125) “If I were to give, what would I have to enjoy myself?” Such thinking of my own self-aims is the way of clutching ghosts. ”If I were to enjoy it myself, what would I have to give?” Such thinking of the aims of others is a quality of the divine.
(126) Paining others for my own self-aims, I’ll be tormented in joyless realms and the like; But paining myself for the aims of others, I’ll acquire all glories.
(127) Through the wish for just myself to advance Come the worse rebirth states, low status, and stupidity; But transferring that very (wish) to others Brings the better rebirth states, honor, (and intelligence).
(128) Ordering others around for my own self-aims, I’ll experience being a servant and worse; But ordering myself around for the aims of others, I’ll experience being a lord and better.
(129) All whosoever who are happy in the world Are (so) through the wish for the happiness of others; While all whosoever who are miserable in the world Are (so) through the wish for the happiness of themselves.
(130) But what need is there to elaborate more? Just look at the difference between the two: An infantile person acting for his own self-aims And Sage (Buddha) acting for the aims of others.
(131) For those who haven’t exchanged their happiness For the sufferings of others, Buddhahood’ll be impossible to attain And there’ll be no happiness even in samsara.
(132) Leave aside the hereafter, not even the aims Of this seeable life will be fulfilled For a waged servant not doing his work And a master not paying his wages.
(133) Dropping the production of happiness (for one another) – A festival of glorious happiness in (this) seeable (life) and unseeable (beyond) – Bewildered people grab hold, instead, of unbearable suffering, Because of causing suffering to one another.
(134) Whatever violence there is in the world, And as much fear and suffering as there is, All of it arises from grasping at a self: So what use is that terrible demon to me?
(135) If I don’t fully drop (such) a self, I won’t be able to drop my suffering; Just as if I don’t fully drop a fire, I won’t be able to drop being burned.
(136) Therefore, for the sake of quelling my own suffering And for quelling the sufferings of others as well, I shall give myself over to others, And take (others) on as myself.
(137) O mind, decide for sure, ”I’m under the governance of others.” Except for the welfare of all limited beings, You’re not going to have other intentions now.
(138) It’s inappropriate (to look) to accomplish my own self-aims With eyes and so on governed by others; It’s also inappropriate to dally improperly (for my own self-aims) With (hands), eyes and so on (given over) to them.
(139) Taking limited beings as the boss through that (view), Whatever you see on this body of mine, Rob each and every one of them And use it for the benefit of others.
(140) Creating in lesser beings and so forth (the sense of) a “me” And creating in yourself (the sense of) others, Meditate on envy, rivalry, and arrogance (like this), With a mind free from prejudiced thoughts:
(141) “This one’s shown respect, but I’m not; I don’t have wealth like this one has. This one’s praised, but I’m belittled; This one has happiness, but I have suffering;
(142) “I do all the work, While this one lives (a life of) ease. This one’s renowned in the world as superior, While I as inferior, without any good qualities.
(143) “But how could (any work) be done by someone having no good qualities? Thus, all of us possess good qualities! (And, after all,) there are those among whom this one is inferior And there are those among whom I’m in fact superior.
(144) “Such things as the decline of my ethical discipline and outlook Are due to disturbing emotions, and not from their being under my control. I need to be healed to the best of his ability: I even readily accept the pain (involved).
(145) “But (not only) does this one not treat me as someone to be healed, Why does he look down on me? What use are his good qualities to me, When this one is the ‘me’ having good qualities?
(146) “With no compassion in this one for wandering beings Caught in the jaws of the carnivorous beast of the worse rebirth states, And with arrogance (instead) toward everybody else about his own good qualities, He wants to outdo the skilled masters!”
(147) “Perceiving me on (his) same level, He would (struggle to) secure the material gain And show of respect that I have, even through contentious means, For the sake of increasing his own lead, in any way.
(148) “But if my own good qualities Were to be evident throughout the whole world, Then, by contrast, any good qualities this one might have Wouldn’t be heard of by anyone.
(149) “And if my own shortcomings were to be concealed, Then offerings would be made to me, not to him. Material gain, today, would be well accruing to me And honors would be coming to me, not to this one.
(150) “And we would (all) look on, with delight, As this one, finally, is put down as incompetent, Made the laughing stock of all wandering beings, And reviled all around.”
(151) “(Further,) it’s come out that this deluded (miserable) being Is even (enviously) in competition with me. But how could the learning, intelligence, physique, class, or wealth Of this one be the equal of mine?
(152) “That being so and hearing My own good qualities proclaimed everywhere, I shall feast on a banquet of joy, So delighted that the hairs on my body will stand up on end.
(153) “Even if this one might somehow come to have material gain, If he’s doing work for us, He’s to be given merely enough to live on And the rest is to be taken forcefully by us.
(154) “This one is to be brought down from his (idle) state of ease And invariably linked to the harms we’ve experienced. For hundreds of times, all around, We’ve been harmed in recurring samsara by this one.”
(155) O mind, countless eons have passed In your obsessive quest for your own self-aims; Yet, with such enormous exhaustion as that, All you’ve procured is just suffering.
(156) Please, definitely engage yourself like that (Right now) for the aims of others; Then you’ll see the benefits of that in the future, Since the words of the Sage are never wrong.
(157) If, in the past, it would have occurred That you had taken this action, Then a situation like this would never have occurred, In which you’ve been freed (instead) of the bliss of success as a Buddha!
(158) Therefore, just as you’ve placed the sense of a “me” Onto drops of the semen and blood of others, Likewise, make it a habit (of placing it) Onto those of others as well.
(159) Having become a scout for others, Whatever you see on this body of mine, Rob each and every one of them And use it for the benefit of others.
(160) “This ‘me’ is happy, the others are unhappy; This ‘me’ is lofty, the others are lowly; This ‘me’ does what’s of (self) benefit, others do not,” Thinking (like that), why wouldn’t you engender envy toward yourself?
(161) So, deprive yourself of your happiness And take onto yourself the sufferings of others. Investigate what’s the fault of this “me,” by asking, ”When does this one do anything (for others)?”
(162) Any mistake that others might make, Transform it (by seeing it) as the fault of this “me”; But any, even minor mistake that this “me” might make, Openly admit it to many people.
(163) With declarations that the renown of others is superior, Let it outshine the renown of this “me”; And like the lowest of servants, Set this “me” to (doing) what’s of benefit for all.
(164) Don’t praise this naturally fault-ridden one For some (tiny) share of temporary good qualities; (Rather) act such that none will ever know, somehow, Of any good qualities that this one might have.
(165) In short, any harmful act you’ve done to others For the sake of your own self-aims, Let that (very same) harm descend on yourself, For the sake of the aims of limited beings.
(166) Never give any strengthening to this one So that he would become boisterous; Make him, (instead,) behave like a newlywed bride, Bashful, timid, and restrained.
(167) “Do that! Remain like that! Don’t you ever act like that!” This one’s to be brought under control like that And knocked down, if he ever transgresses beyond that.
(168) But even when being instructed like that, If you don’t act in that way, O mind, Then since all wrongs depend on you, It’s exactly you whom I shall knock down.
(169) That time before was different, When I was being ruined by you. But (now) I see you; so where can you go? I’m going to knock all the arrogance out of you.
(170) Throw away, now, any hope, ”I still have my own self-interest.” I’ve sold you to others, so don’t think of your weariness; I’ve offered your energies (to them).
(171) If, because of not caring, I don’t hand you over to limited beings, Then, for sure, you’ll hand me over To the guards of the joyless realms.
(172) I’ve been handed over, like that, Many times by you and long tormented; But now, recalling those grudges, I shall smash you, you creature of self-interest.
(173) If you want self-happiness, Don’t work for happiness in yourself; If you want self-protection, Protect always others.
(174) To whatever degree This body is pampered, To that degree it degenerates To a state of becoming ever more dainty.
(175) And when it’s degenerated like that, Not even this entire (wealth-bearing) earth Has the ability to fulfill its longings; So, who will be able to grant its desires?
(176) For someone desiring the impossible, Disturbing emotion and the dashing of hopes come about; But for someone having no hopes for anything, His fulfillment never knows an end.
(177) Therefore, don’t leave the chance open For an increase in desire concerning the body. That object is best, which isn’t taken Because of its being desirable.
(178) It winds up as ashes in the end And, (even when alive,) being inert, it’s set into motion by something else – This filthy form is (truly) ghastly. Why grasp to it as “mine?”
(179) Whether it’s alive or dead, What use is this device to me? What difference does it have from a lump of clay and such things? But, oh no, you’re not removing your pride (of identifying with it)!
(180) Suffering accumulates pointlessly Through being partial toward the body; So what use is being fawning or angry Over this thing that resembles a block of wood?
(181) Whether nurtured by me in this way Or devoured by vultures and such, It doesn’t have sticky attachment or anger, So why do I have sticky attachment to it?
(182) Something getting furious at being belittled Or something getting pleased at being praised – If it doesn’t know to be either of these, For whom am I exhausting myself?
(183) “But those who desire this body – They and I are friends.” Well, since everyone desires the body of oneself, Why aren’t they as dear to me too?
(184) Therefore, without partiality, this body’s been given over by me For the benefit of wandering beings. Nevertheless, though it has many faults, It needs to be held like a tool for the job.
(185) So enough of behaving like an infant, I’m following in the footsteps of the wise! (Thus,) recalling the teaching on taking care, I shall turn back sleepiness and being muddleheaded.
(186) Like the compassionate offspring of the Triumphant, I shall bear the rigors of what’s appropriate (to do); For if I don’t make a constant effort, day and night, When will my suffering ever come to an end?
(187) Therefore, withdrawing my mind from distorted pathways, I shall continuously set it in absorbed concentration On the perfect object, In order for its obscurations to be gone.
9. Far-Reaching Discriminating Awareness
(1) The Sage has spoken about all these branches For the sake of discriminating awareness. Therefore, generate discriminating awareness With the wish to pacify sufferings.
(2) Surface and deepest, These are accepted as being the two truths. The deepest aren’t cognitive objects of the dualistic mind; The dualistic mind is spoken of (in terms of) the surface.
(3) In light of that, the world is seen to be of two types: Yogis and common people. And regarding that, the world of common people Is undermined by the yogi world.
(4) Through differences in their intelligence, Yogis too are undermined by progressively higher ones, By means of examples accepted by both and because, When not scrutinizing, (both accept that causes function) for the sake of the result.
(5) Functional phenomena are seen by the (common) world And conceptualized to be absolutely existent, And not like an illusion. It’s in this regard That there’s dispute between the yogis and the (common) world.
(6) But even form and so on, (as perceived by) straightforward cognition itself, Is (established only) by popular consensus and not by valid cognition; And that’s false, like the popular consensus that What’s unclean and so forth is clean and so on.
(7) For the sake of causing the (common) world to enter, The Guardian (Buddha) has taught that there are (truly existent) functional phenomena. Their actual nature, however, is that they aren’t “momentary things.” (Suppose, like the Sautrantikas,) you objected, “But, it’s supposed to contradict the (common) surface (view).”
(8) (Well ,) surface (truth asserted) by yogis has no fault, And that’s a seeing of their actual nature in contrast with the (common) world’s (view); Otherwise, (their) ascertainment of the uncleanliness of a woman’s (body, for instance,) Would be undermined by the (common) world.
(9) (Furthermore,) from Triumphant Ones, who are like an illusion, (comes) positive force, In the same way as if they (actually) were (truly existent) functional phenomena. Suppose you objected, “But, if a limited being were like an illusion, Then how could he take rebirth, once having died?”
(10) (Well,) so long as conditions are gathered together, For that long an illusion lasts as well; And how could a limited being be truly existent Merely because his continuity lasts longer?
(11) In murdering, and so on, a person that is (actually) an illusion, There’s no negative force, since it hasn’t a mind; But, with someone having the (type of) illusion a mind (actually) is, Positive and negative forces accrue.
(12) Because mantras and so forth lack the ability, They cannot produce an (actual) illusory mind. And even that illusory one that arises from varying conditions Is of varying sorts, (Since) nowhere is there one condition Having the ability for (producing) all.
(13) (Suppose you asked, ) ”If, in deepest (truth), someone were released in (natural) nirvana And, in surface (truth), were circling in samsara; Then, since Buddha as well would be circling in samsara, What use would there be with bodhisattva behavior?”
(14) (Well,) even an illusion cannot be turned back, Unless the continuity of its conditions is cut. Yet, when the continuity of its conditions is cut, It doesn’t arise even in surface (truth).
(15) (Suppose, like the Chittamatrins, you then asked,) ”When even the deceptive awareness (of it) doesn’t (truly) exist, By what is the illusion being focused on?” (Well,) when the illusion itself doesn’t (externally) exist, according to you, Then, on what is it being focused?
(16) Suppose (you answered,) ”In actuality, it exists as something else: It’s an aspect of mind itself.” (Well,) when mind itself is what the illusion (actually) is, Then what’s being seen by what?
(17) It’s been said by the Guardian for the World, in fact, ”Mind cannot see mind.” Just as the edge of a sword cannot cut itself, So (it is with) the mind.
(18) (Suppose you responded,) ”But, it’s just like how a candle flame Perfectly illuminates itself as a phenomenon.” (Well,) the flame of a candle isn’t being illuminated, Since it’s not something that had been obscured by darkness.
(19) Suppose (you replied), ”Well, a blue object, (for example,) doesn’t depend on something else For its being blue, as does a (clear) crystal; So like this, some things are seen that depend on another And some that do not so depend.”
(20) (Well,) when something is (an example of) non-blue, It can’t make itself blue by itself; (And what blue object Can make itself blue by itself?)
(21) (Suppose you persisted,) ”But, as it’s cognized by a cognition, It can be said, ‘The candle flame is illuminating itself.'” (Well,) upon its being cognized by what can that statement be made, ”A mind is illuminating itself?”
(22) And when it’s never been seen by anyone, Then discussing whether it’s (self) luminous Or not (self) luminous is meaningless, Like the beautiful looks of the daughter of a barren woman.
(23) (Suppose you insisted,) ”But, if reflexive awareness doesn’t exist, Then how does a consciousness come to be recalled?” (Well,) a recollection comes about from a connection With another (object) that was experienced, like the poison from a rat.
(24) (And suppose you persisted,) ”But, it can illuminate itself, because, When endowed with other conditions, there’s the seeing (of others’ minds).” (Well,) a (buried treasure) vase that’s seen from applying actualized magic eye lotion Still wouldn’t be the eye lotion itself.
(25) How something is seen, heard, or known Is not being nullified in this at all. Here, (instead,) conceptual cognition (of it) as truly existent, which has become the cause for suffering, Is being turned back.
(26) (Suppose you said,) ”An illusion (of an external object) isn’t different from the mind; Yet it can’t be conceived as non-different.” (Well,) if it were a (truly existent) functional phenomenon, how could it not be different? And if (you said) it’s not different, it couldn’t be a (truly existent) functional phenomenon.
(27) Just as an illusion, though not truly existent, can still be seen, So too is it with what does the seeing. Suppose (you still objected,) “But, samsara must have a (truly existent) functional phenomenon as its support; Otherwise, it would be like space.”
(28) (Well,) how could a non-phenomenon come to have a function Through its being supported on (a truly existent) functional one? And the mind you (asserted) would get (reduced, in fact,) To something existing alone by itself, accompanied by nothing.
(29) And when the mind would be (naturally) free of cognized objects, Then everyone would be a Thusly Gone (Buddha). And if that were the case, what benefit would there be In conceiving of mind-only?
(30) (Suppose you asked,) ”Even upon knowing the similarity (of things) with illusion, How does disturbing emotion turn back, When it’s the case that lust for an illusory woman Can arise even in the one who conjured her?”
(31) (Well, that happens because) the conjurer hasn’t rid himself yet Of the habit for disturbing emotion toward knowable things, And so, when he sees her, His habit for voidness is still weak in force.
(32) However, by habituating himself to the habit of voidness, He’ll rid himself of the habit of (cognizing) phenomena (as truly existent). Then, by habituating himself with “not existing at all,” He’ll later come to rid himself even of (cognizing) that.
(33) When a (truly existent) functional phenomenon, which is conceived as “not existing,” Is no longer taken as the mental aim; Then lacking a support, how can the nonfunctional phenomenon (of its non-true existence) Remain before the dualistic mind?
(34) When neither a (truly existent) functional phenomenon nor the nonfunctional one (of its non-true existence) Remains before the dualistic mind, Then since the other alternatives cannot be the case, There’s full pacification into (a state) without mental aim (at the impossible).
(35) (Then,) just as a wish-fulfilling gem And a wish-granting tree fulfill all wishes; Likewise, through the power of disciples to be tamed and of prayers, The Enlightening Form of a Triumphant One appears.
(36) For example, just as when a garudika healer has passed away After actualizing a wooden healing post, It still can pacify poison and the like, Even when a long time’s expired since his passing;
(37) So too, when a bodhisattva has passed into nirvana, After actualizing the healing-post (body) of a Triumphant One In accord with bodhisattva behavior, It still can perform all that’s to be done.
(38) (Suppose you asked,) ”How can offerings made to something lacking a mind have results?” (Well,) why? Because whether he’s still here Or has already passed into nirvana, It’s been proclaimed as being the same.
(39) According to scriptural authority, results are there, Whether from the surface (viewpoint) or that of actuality. It’s like, for example, how (you’d say that offerings made) To a truly existent Buddha has results.
(40) (Suppose, like the Hinayanists, you then objected,) ”But, since liberation comes from seeing the (four noble) truths, What’s the use of seeing voidness?” (Well,) why? Because from scriptural authority it’s been proclaimed That without this path, there’s no purified state.
(41) Suppose (you then objected,) ”But, Mahayana’s not established (as valid)!” (Well,) how can your scriptures be established? (If you answered,) “Because they’re established for both parties.” (Well,) they weren’t established for you from the start.
(42) Any criterion that would give confidence in them Would equally (apply) to the Mahayana ones too. And if acceptance by two different parties could make something true, Then the Vedas and so on would also become true.
(43) Suppose (you argued), ”It’s because the Mahayana ones are disputed.” (Well,) because (your) scriptures are disputed by non-Buddhists And some other (sections within your) scriptures by yourselves and others, They’d have to be discarded (too).
(44) (Suppose you said,) ”But the teachings (of the four noble truths) are the root of the (absolute) monkhood (of arhats).” (Well,) even (absolute) monkhood itself is on difficult grounds, (Since) the nirvana of a mind still aimed (at the impossible) Is on difficult grounds.
(45) (Suppose you replied,) ”But they’ve become liberated, because they’ve rid themselves of disturbing emotion.” (Well,) that would need to have happened immediately upon that; However, it’s seen that despite (their) lacking disturbing emotion, They’re still under the power of karma.
(46) Suppose (you then said), ”But it’s definite that they don’t have, still to some extent, Craving (as a condition) for obtaining (rebirth).” (Well,) why couldn’t it be that a craving that’s not with disturbing emotion (Is still existing in them,) while still with bewilderment about all?
(47) Through the circumstance of feeling, there’s craving, And feeling still exists in them as well. So a mind still having an aim (at the impossible) Will come to be settled on one or another.
(48) A mind that’s parted from voidness May block (it), but it’ll arise once again, As with a trance that lacks distinguishing. Therefore, one needs to meditate on voidness.
(49) (So again,) if you accept as spoken by the Buddha Any speech that’s made it down into the sutras, Then why not accept the Mahayana, which, for the most part, Are equivalent to (your) sutras?
(50) If, because of one exception, All would become corrupt; Then why, because of one equivalence to (your) sutras, Wouldn’t all have been spoken by the Buddha?
(51) And who would consider unacceptable Some speech, the depths of which (Even) Mahakashyapa and the like couldn’t fathom, (Simply) because you can’t understand it?
(52) (After all,) the fruit of (realizing) voidness is this: Through freedom from the extremes of attachment and fear, Being able to stay in samsara For the sake of those suffering from being bewildered.
(53) As it’s like this, derision’s improper In the direction of voidness. Therefore, without indecisively wavering, Meditate, please, on voidness.
(54) Voidness is the opponent for the darkness Of the emotional and cognitive obscurations; (So) how can someone wishing for omniscience quickly Not meditate on it?
(55) (Cognizing) phenomena (as truly existent) gives rise to suffering: Generate fear for that. But (realizing) voidness pacifies suffering: So why does fear generate for that?
(56) (Go ahead and) be afraid of whatever, If there were something called a “me”; But as there’s nothing that is a “me,” Then whose fear will it be?
(57) Teeth, hair, or nails are not a “me”; Nor am “I” bones or blood. (“I’m”) neither mucous nor phlegm; And nor am “I” lymph or pus.
(58) “I” am not fat or sweat; Nor am “I” even lungs or a liver. ”I’m” not any of the other inner organs; Nor am “I” feces or urine.
(59) Flesh or skin is not a “me”; Nor am “I” temperature or energy-wind. In no way am “I” ever a bodily hole, Nor are the six types of consciousness a “me.”
(60) And if (a person) were a permanent cognizer (as Samkhya asserts, and) of a sound, The sound would be cognized all of the time. But when bereft of something it cognizes, what does it know, By means of which it could be called a cognizer?
(61) If it could be a cognizer without cognizing (something), Then absurdly a stick would also be a cognizer. Therefore, it’s certain that without something nearby that it’s cognizing, It can’t be a cognition.
(62) Suppose (you said), ”It itself is then cognizing a sight.” (Well,) why doesn’t it also hear at that time? If (you answered), “Because the sound’s not nearby,” (Well,) then it’s no longer a cognizer of it.
(63) How can something having the nature of the cognizer of a sound Become the cognizer of a sight? One can be labeled a father and a son, But not as his absolute nature.
(64) And it’s like this (because) sattva, rajas, and tamas (as the absolute nature of both a sound and a sight) Are neither a son, nor are they a father; (And because) that (cognizer of a sight) has never been seen With a fundamental nature connected with a cognizer of a sound.
(65) (Suppose you persisted,) ”Like a dancer, it’s still itself, but seen with another mode (of guise).” (Well then,) it wouldn’t be static. And suppose (you clarified), “It’s still itself, but (its fundamental nature) is in another mode.” (Well then,) its oneness is one without any precedent.
(66) Suppose (you explained), ”But its assorted modes (of guise) are not true,” Then describe, please, its own (innate) natural (guise). Suppose (you answered,) “It’s being a cognizer.” (Well then), absurdly it would follow that all persons are one.
(67) (Further,) what has intention and what lacks intention – those two would, in fact, become one thing, Because their existence is the same. And, if individualities were contrary to fact, Then what could be their shared support?
(68) Furthermore, something lacking intention cannot be a self, (as Nyaya-Vaisheshika asserts), Because of its nature of lack of intention, just like a vase and such things. Now (suppose you claimed), “It’s cognizant because of a conjunction with an intention,” Then it absurdly follows that (this) noncognizant (self) has perished.
(69) And if the self were (in fact) unchanging, What could have been done to it through (a connection with) an intention? (Moreover,) space is noncognizant and inert like that, So, it (as well) could become a self.
(70) Suppose (you then objected), ”But, without the (true) existence of a (static) self, The connection between behavioral cause and effect would be unreasonable, Since, if it perished after having done an action, Then whose action would it have been?”
(71) (Well,) since it’s established for both of us That the action and result have a different basis, And that the self hasn’t an active role in this, Isn’t it useless to debate on this (point)?
(72) “Someone providing a causal (action) and conjoined with its result” – This has never been seen as an existent thing. It’s in reliance on the unity of a continuum that it is taught, ”(Only) the agent can be the experiencer (of the results).”
(73) The already-passed and the not-yet-arisen minds Are not the self, since they don’t exist (now). And well, if the (presently) arising mind were the self, When it perishes, there would, in fact, be no self!
(74) For example, when the trunk of a plantain tree Is split into parts, nothing (is found); Likewise, when searched for with discerning analysis, A self isn’t (found as) an absolute thing.
(75) (Suppose) you asked, ”If a limited being didn’t exist, Toward whom could there be compassion?” (Well,) it would be toward one who was conceptually labeled by a bewildered (mind) That had committed itself to the goal of its fruit.
(76) (Suppose you then asked,) ”Whose fruit would it be, if there were no limited being?” (Well,) that’s true. It’s accepted that (the wish) is due to bewilderment; (Yet,) for the sake of pacifying suffering completely, Bewilderment about the fruit is not turned back.
(77) But because of bewilderment about the self, The cause of suffering, self-inflation, increases. (Suppose) you said, “But, there’s no turning back from that.” (Well,) best is meditation on the lack of an (impossible) self.
(78) A body is neither the feet nor the calves; Nor is a body the thighs or the hips. The belly or the back is not a body; Neither is a body the chest or the arms.
(79) The sides of the torso or the hands are not a body; Nor is a body the armpits or the shoulders. The inner organs as well are not it; And neither is a body the head or also the neck. So what (alternative) could a body be here?
(80) If this body were located With a portion in all of these; Then, although the parts are located in the parts, Where is it itself located?
(81) And if a body itself, in its entirety, Were located (everywhere), in the hands and so forth, There would be as many bodies As there were hands and so on.
(82) As a body’s not (located) outside or inside (the parts), How could a body exist in terms of the hands and so forth (as their possessor)? As it’s also not (a possessor) separate from the hands and so on, How could it possibly be (truly) existent?
(83) Thus, a body’s not (truly) existent; But, because of bewilderment in terms of the hands and so forth, A dualistic mind arises of a body. It’s like the dualistic mind that arises of a man in terms of a scarecrow, By its feature of having been set up in its shape.
(84) For as long as the conditions are assembled, The body (of a scarecrow) is seen as a man; Likewise, for as long as there are hands and so on, A body is seen in terms of them.
(85) Similarly, because of its being a composite of fingers, Which one could be a hand? (The same with) that (finger) as well, because of its being a composite of joints; And a joint as well, from the breakdown into its own parts;
(86) And a part as well, through a breakdown into particles; And that particle as well, because of directional divisions; And a directional division too, because of its being without (findable) parts, like space. Consequently, even particles don’t (truly) exist.
(87) Therefore, what discerning (person) would be attached To a bodily form, which is like a dream? And when, like that, a body doesn’t (truly) exist, Then what’s a male and what’s a female?
(88) If suffering existed by absolute nature, How is it that it doesn’t undermine (experiencing) pleasures? And if happiness, for those tormented by grief and the like, were a tasty dish or such things, Why doesn’t it make them delighted?
(89) Suppose (you answered), ”It’s not experienced, because it’s outshone By something that’s more intense.” (Well,) how can something not in the nature of an experience Still be something (in the category of) a feeling?
(90) Suppose (you replied,) ”Couldn’t it still be suffering, but in a subtle state, When its gross (level) has been displaced?” (Well, then) you could (also) say that, other than that, it was a slight (level of) joy, And then, (absurdly,) its subtle state would be one of that too.
(91) Suppose (you said), ”But, at the arising of incompatible conditions, There’s the non-arising of suffering.” (Well,) doesn’t that (come down to) establishing that A feeling is (merely) something hung on by a conceptual thought?
(92) Because of just that, this discerning analysis Needs to be meditated as its opponent; The stability of mind that grows from the field of examining Is the food of the yogis.
(93) If there’s a gap between a cognitive sensor and its object; Where could the meeting of the two occur? And if there’s no gap, they’d be a fused unity, So the meeting would be of what with what?
(94) Yet, there can’t be penetration of a particle by a particle: They’ve no empty space and they’re of uniform (size). When there’s no penetration, there’s no commingling; And when there’s no commingling, there’s no meeting.
(95) Moreover, for something that’s partless, How could what might be called “a meeting” properly take place? If a meeting and being partless can be observed (together), Then show it, please!
(96) For a consciousness, which is immaterial, A meeting is an impossibility; (That’s so) for a composite as well, because it doesn’t truly exist, As has been discerningly analyzed before.
(97) And so, like that, when contact doesn’t truly exist, From what does a feeling arise? For what reason, (then,) is there (all) this trouble? For whom and from what could injury come?
(98) And when there’s no (truly existent) one that feels, And feeling, as well, doesn’t (truly) exist, Then seeing this situation, O craving, Why don’t you turn yourself back?
(99) Nevertheless, (something) can be seen and also be touched Through its having a nature similar to a dream or an illusion.
(Further,) a feeling cannot be perceived by a mind From arising simultaneously with it.
(100) And, though a previous one can be remembered by one that arises later, It can’t be experienced (by it). (In short, a feeling) can’t experience it’s own self And it can’t be experienced by something else.
(101) As there’s no (truly existent) one that feels, Then, feeling cannot exist absolutely. So, in this bundle that lacks a true self, Who can be injured by it?
(102) A mind’s not situated in cognitive sensors, in sights and so on, Nor in the space in between; A mind isn’t inside, nor is it outside, Nor can it be found, in fact, anywhere else.
(103) Something that isn’t the body nor something else, Neither commingled, nor separate in any way, Isn’t anything (truly existent) at all. Because of that, Limited beings are by nature released in parinirvana.
(104) If the cognition (of something) were prior to what it cognized, Then what’s it to be aimed at for its arising (to occur)? And if a cognition were simultaneous with what it cognized, (Still,) what’s it to be aimed at for its arising (to occur)?
(105) Yet, if it occurred after what it cognized, Then from what did the cognition (of it) arise? Similarly, it can’t be determined that there’s A (truly existent) arising of any phenomenon. (106) (Suppose you objected,) ”But if it were like that, then surface (true) things wouldn’t exist (at all); And so how, in this case, could there be the two truths? Moreover, if they were being (projected) by others (as veiling) surface (truths), Then how could there be someone with a limited mind (unveiled and) released with nirvana?”
(107) (Well,) this would be the deceptive conception of the limited minds of others, But that isn’t surface (truth) from our own (point of view). What’s ascertained afterwards, that (still) exists, And if not, then surface truth turns out to be something that doesn’t exist.
(108) (And so,) what’s conceptually examining and what’s conceptually examined, The two of them are (dependently) supported, one by the other. And it’s by being (dependently) supported by what’s in accord with popular consensus, That all analytical discernment is expressed.
(109) But (suppose you objected), ”When one would need to analytically discern With a discernment that which has analytically discerned, Then there would be an infinite regress for that discernment as well, Because of its need to be analytically discerned.”
(110) (Well,) when what’s analytically discerned is being discerned, A supporting (basis) for that discernment doesn’t exist. And because of its being without a supporting (basis), it doesn’t arise: That’s called (its natural) release in nirvana.
(111) And as for the likes of someone, for whom these two are truly existent, He indeed is on very difficult grounds; (Because,) if it’s from the power of a cognition that an object’s established, Then, what supporting (basis) is there for (establishing) the true existence of the cognition?
(112) And if it’s from (the power of) what’s cognized that a cognition is established, Then, what support is there for (establishing) the true existence of what’s cognized? On the other hand, if their existence (is established) by the power of each other, Then the non-true existence of both would in fact be the case.
(113) (For example,) if, without a child, someone is not a father, (Then,) from whom can it arise that someone is a child? (Because,) in the absence of a child, there can be no father. Similar to that, is the non-true existence of those two.
(114) (Suppose you asked,) ”A sprout grows from a seed, And just as (the true existence of) the seed is indicated by it, Why, by the arising of a cognition from what’s cognized, Can’t its true existence (also) be concluded?”
(115) (Well,) when it’s from a cognition different from the sprout That it can be concluded that a seed exists, What can it be from, by means of which, the (true) existence Of a cognition cognizing something it cognizes can be concluded?
(116) (Charvakas, please,) from straightforward cognition, The common world, in fact, sees for itself everything causal. (After all,) a diversity of (plants): lotus stalks and the like, Grows by means of a diversity of causes.
(117) Suppose (you asked), ”By what has the diversity of causes been made?” (Well,) from a diversity of previous causes. And (suppose you asked further), “Because of what does a cause have the ability to give rise to an effect?” (Well,) it’s from the power of previous causes.
(118) If, (as Nyaya-Vaisheshika asserts,) the Powerful Lord Ishvara were the cause of the world, So tell me, what is Ishvara in fact? If you said, “The elements,” then so be it, But why (all) the fuss over merely a name?
(119) However, earth and the rest are multipart, Nonstatic, inert, and not divine; They’re things to be walked over and unclean. So that can’t be the Powerful Lord Ishvara.
(120) Ishvara can’t be space, because that’s inert; He can’t be the self, since that’s been refuted before. And even (if you said), “The nature of being a creator is in reference to something inconceivable,” Well then, what’s the use of talking about something that’s inconceivable?
(121) And what could it be that he wished to create? The self? Well, aren’t that, the earth (element) and the rest, And Ishvara supposed to be eternal by nature? Moreover, the arising of cognition from cognizable objects (122) Is without a beginning, as is happiness and suffering from karma. So tell me, what’s been created by him? And if there’s no beginning to the cause, How could there be a first instance of its effect?
(123) And why doesn’t he always create, When he doesn’t depend on anything else? There’s nothing else existing not created by him, So what is it on which he depends (to create)?
(124) If what he depends on is a gathering (of conditions), (Then, again,) the Powerful Lord Ishvara would become not the cause: (For,) when they’re gathered, he’d lack the power not to create, And in their absence, he’d lack the power to create.
(125) And if the Powerful Lord Ishvara must create when not wanting to, It absurdly follows that he’s under the power of something else. And if it’s when wanting to, he’s under the power of want. So where’s (the power of) the Powerful Lord who’s creating?
(126) Those (Mimamsakas) who assert static particles (as the creator) Have already been turned back before; While the Samkhyas assert Static primal matter as the cause of the world.
(127) (For them,) the universal constituents, Known as sattva/pleasure, rajas/pain, and tamas/neutral sensation, Abiding not in imbalance are called primal matter; (While their) imbalance is said to be the world.
(128) But it’s illogical for a (partless) unity to be something threefold by nature; And therefore, it doesn’t exist. Likewise, the universal constituents can’t be (truly) existent, Because each of them too has three aspects.
(129) And in the absence of the universal constituents, The (true) existence of sound and the rest becomes very farfetched. Moreover, it’s impossible for pleasure and so on To exist in non-conscious clothing and the likes.
(130) Suppose (you said), ”Functional phenomena (exist) in the natural guise of their causes.” (Well,) haven’t functional phenomena already been analyzed? (In any case,) the causes, for you, are pleasure and so on themselves: But cotton clothing and the likes don’t arise from that at all.
(131) And, if pleasure and so on were to exist from cotton clothing and the likes, Then from their absence, pleasure and so on wouldn’t exist. Moreover, a static state of pleasure and so on Has never been focused upon.
(132) If manifest pleasure and so on were (truly) existent (statically), Why isn’t (their) experience (always) perceived? Suppose (you said,) “(The sensation) itself goes to a subtle (unmanifest) state.” (Well,) how can it be (both) gross and subtle?
(133) Since it would have become subtle (and unmanifest), after having left its gross (manifest) state, Its gross and subtle states are nonstatic. So why not accept the nonstaticness like that Of all functional phenomena?
(134) And if its gross (manifest) state were no different from pleasure (itself), Then the nonstaticness of pleasure is obvious. Suppose you asserted, “But something totally nonexistent (in the cause) Couldn’t be produced, because of its being nonexistent.”
(135) (Well,) then production of something nonexistent as a manifest (object) Would be (the self-contradiction) into which you’re positioned, although you don’t want it. And if the effect were positioned in the cause, Then a consumer of food would be an eater of excrement!
(136) And for the price of cotton clothing, Cottonseed could be bought and worn (instead)! Suppose (you said), “(Although) common people don’t see (it), because of bewilderment, Precisely that is the position (established) by (Kapila,) the Knower of Reality.”
(137) (Well,) cognition of that must (also) exist In common people, so why isn’t it seen? Suppose (you answered,) “(That lies) in common people’s Not being valid cognizers (for that).” (Well,) what they see as manifest, then, would (also) not be true.
(138) (Suppose you retorted), ”(But you too assert that) a valid cognizer (for the common world)
is not a valid cognizer (for deepest truth). And if that’s the case, then wouldn’t what was validly cognized by it (also) become false, And therefore, in actuality, meditation on the voidness (Of functional phenomena) by it become incorrect?”
(139) (Well, yes, but) when functional phenomena
(labeled and) conceptually analyzed are not contacted, The nonfunctional phenomenon of their (nontrue existence) would (also) not be grasped. Therefore, concerning any truly existent functional phenomenon that’s false, The falsehood of the nonfunctional phenomenon of its nontrue existence would be obvious.
(140) Thus, upon the death of a son in a dream, The conceptual thought that he doesn’t exist Stops (the arising of) the conceptual thought That he does exist, and yet it is false.
(141) Therefore, with discerning analysis like this, Nothing exists that’s from no cause at all, Or that’s sitting there, fixed in conditions, Whether separate ones or combined.
(142) In fact, nothing has come from something else; And nothing remains, and nothing goes. (So,) anything taken as truly existent by bewildered minds, What difference does it have from an illusion?
(143) (So,) examine something emanated by illusion And something emanated by causes: Where does it come from? Where does it go?
(144) How can there be true existence In some virtual object like a reflection, Which is seen (only) in conjunction with something (else) And which doesn’t exist when that’s absent?
(145) For a functional phenomenon that was (truly) existing, What need would there be for a cause? Then again, if something were (truly) not existing, What need would there be for a cause?
(146) There can be no transformation of a non-phenomenon, Even by means of a hundred million causes! How can something in that state become a functional phenomenon? But what else could come into functional existence?
(147) If it isn’t a functional phenomenon at the time of being a non-phenomenon, When will it come to exist as a functional phenomenon? But without its functional existence coming to arise, It won’t leave being a non-phenomenon.
(148) Without leaving being a non-phenomenon, No occasion will occur for its coming to exist as a functional phenomenon. And a functional phenomenon cannot go to a state of nonfunctionality, Because it would absurdly follow that it had a bipolar true nature.
(149) In that way, as cessation doesn’t (truly) exist, And (the arising) of phenomena doesn’t (truly) exist either, Thus this entire world always has been Non-truly arising and non-truly ceasing.
(150) (Therefore,) wandering beings resemble a dream; Upon discerning analysis, they’re the same as a plantain tree. Whether they’re released with nirvana or not released, There’s no difference in their actual way of existing.
(151) With all phenomena devoid in that way, What is there that would’ve been received; What is there that would’ve been taken away? Who is there who’ll become shown respect or contempt, and by whom? (152) What is there, from which there’s pleasure or pain? What is there, to be disliked or liked? What craving is there, that’s searching for an actual (findable) nature, And what is it for, that there’s craving?
(153) Upon discerning analysis, (what) world of living beings (is there)? Who is (possibly) there that will die (from here)? Who is there that’ll come to exist? Who is there that has existed? Who is there that is a relative? (Who is there that is) a friend? (And who is there whose friend it is?)
(154) Those of my type, understand please That all (of them) are like space.
But, those wishing for happiness for a “self” Get agitated and overexcited
(155) Through fights and festivities as the cause; And then, through the (resulting) distress and overexertion, (Disheartening) disputes, and knifings and stabbings of each other, They pass their lives with tremendous difficulties through (their) negative acts.
(156) And (despite) coming and coming to the better rebirth states And experiencing and experiencing manifold pleasures, They fall, after death, to the worse rebirth states And unbearable sufferings for a very long time.
(157) In compulsive existence, cliffs (to fall from) are aplenty; And there it’s like this, when actuality is not (known). But since (this and what’s) there, in fact, contradict one another, In compulsive existence, it’s not like this, when actuality (is known).
(158) There, too, there are incomparable, violent Oceans of suffering beyond any end; There, like that, there’s little strength; There, as well, there’s little life span;
(159) There, as well, with activities for longevity and health, With hunger and exhaustion, With sleep and calamities, and likewise With fruitless company with infantile people,
(160) A lifetime passes quickly, and in vain. Yet, analytical discernment is so difficult to gain! So there, as well, where’s there a means For turning back chronic distraction?
(161) There, as well, demonic force is working hard To bring about a fall to the most awful rebirth states. There, (because) there’s a profusion of false paths, Indecisively wavering is so hard to transcend.
(162) And with the difficulty of gaining a respite again, And the advent of a Buddha even more difficult to gain, And the rapids of disturbing emotion so difficult to get out of, Alas, suffering will just go on and on.
(163) Oh dear, it’s really fit to feel sad About those who are caught in a rapids of suffering And who fail to see their own terrible situations, Although they’re in extremely terrible states.
(164) For example, just as some people, abluting and abluting, Would jump into fire again and again, And though, in extremely terrible states, Proudly (consider) themselves in extremely wonderful situations;
(165) Likewise, there are those who frolic about, Fooling around, as if there weren’t old age and death. But first, they’ll be made to lose their lives, And then comes an unbearable fall to a worse rebirth state.
(166) Oh, when shall I come to bring peace To those tortured by the fires of sufferings like that, With a rain of my buildup of happiness Pouring forth from the clouds of my positive force?
(167) Oh, when shall I respectfully build up a network of positive force In a manner of no mental aim (at impossible existence), And then teach voidness to those Who’ve been ruined by (such) mental aim.
(1) Through my constructive act of having (reflected upon and) composed Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior, May all wandering beings become (adornments for the world,) Engaged in the behavior of bodhisattvas.
(2) As many beings as there are in all directions, Diseased with sufferings of body and mind, May they all obtain oceans of happiness and joy Through the forces of my positive acts.
(3) To the end of (their) recurring samsara, May their happiness never become (old and) decrepit; (Instead), may those who wander obtain, without interruption, The (bodhisattvas’) unsurpassed bliss.
(4) Whatever joyless realm beings, as many as there are, Throughout the realms of the world, May those beings with limited bodies all enjoy The (joy and) bliss of a Pure Land of Bliss.
(5) May those tortured by cold find warmth; And those tortured by heat be cooled By the boundless (oceans of) water pouring down From the billowing clouds of bodhisattvas.
(6) May the sword-leaved forest become for them A beautiful pleasure-grove; And may the diabolical trees of thorns Transform into wish-granting trees.
(7) May the joyless realm regions become delights With lakes fragrant from (lake-born) lotuses thickly (rising up), And made enchanting with the bewitching cries Of cranes, wild ducks, geese, swans, and the like.
(8) May those mounds of glowing charcoals become mounds of gems, And the flaming ground a polished (mosaic) floor of crystal; And may the mountains of the crushing joyless realms become Celestial temples for offerings, filled with (Buddhas) Gone to Bliss.
(9) May the missiles of glowing charcoals and burning rocks, From this day on, become a rain of flowers; And may bombarding (battle) with those missiles, one against the other, From this day on, become tossing (battle) with flowers, for frolic sake.
(10) May those sunk in the Uncrossable Infernal River, (with waters) like fire, All their flesh fallen off, skeletons jasmine in color, Gain the bodies of celestials, by the force of my constructive deeds, And bask in the Gently Flowing Heavenly River, in the company of celestial maidens.
(11) Wondering, “Why are the terrifying henchmen of the Lord of Death, crows, and vultures here (suddenly) scared, And whose is this soothing (moonlike) force that’s eclipsing the darkness everywhere and giving rise to (our) happiness and joy?” Gazing upward and having beheld a shining Vajrapani, poised in the expanse of the sky, From the strength of delight, their dark karmic forces dispelled, may they (depart) in his company, together with him. (12) Seeing the joyless realm fires fizzle and fade out From a falling rain of water lilies, mixed with scented water, And wondering, “What can this be?” suddenly relieved with joy, May these joyless realm beings behold Kamalapani, (Water Lily in His Hand).
(13) “Friends, shed your fears and come! (Come) here quickly! (We’re brought back to life!) Who’s come before us? It’s the radiant Youth with (Five) Knots of Hair (Manjushri), the bestower of fearlessness, By whose power all suffering’s removed, rushing (streams) of joy flow forth, And bodhichitta is born, as is loving affection, (the mother) nurturing those who wander, everywhere.
(14) “(All of) you, behold him whose lotus feet are touched in honor by the crowned (foreheads) of hundreds of celestial beings, Whose gaze is moist with compassion, and on whose head rains a shower of assorted flowers, (Tossed) from rooftop chambers, delightful with the singing of thousands of celestial maidens resounding his praise.” Seeing Manjughosha (before them) like that, may the joyless realm beings instantly raise a cheer.
(15) Thus, beholding, through my constructive acts as the roots, Unobscured clouds of bodhisattvas – Samantabhadra and the rest – Showering cool fragrant rains of joy, May those joyless realm beings rejoice.
(May the intense pains and fears Of the joyless realm beings be stilled; And may everyone living in the worse rebirth states Be freed from the worse rebirth states.)
(16) May animals be parted from the fear Of being devoured by each other; And may the clutching ghosts Become as happy as the people of the Northern Island-World.
(17) May the clutching ghosts Be satiated, bathed, and cooled forever By streams of milk, pouring from the hand Of Arya Avalokiteshvara. (18) May the blind see sights, And forever may the deaf hear sounds; And may the pregnant give birth Without any pain, as did (Shakyamuni’s mother,) Mayadevi.
(19) May the naked find clothing, The hungry food, And the thirsty water And delicious things to drink.
(20) May the poor find wealth, Those stricken with grief find joy; And may the discouraged become uplifted And perfectly steadfast.
(21) May as many limited beings as are sick Be swiftly set free from sickness; And may the sicknesses of wandering beings, Without exception, never recur.
(22) May those with fear become fearless, Those in bondage be released, Those lacking strength become strong, And their hearts become friendly toward each other.
(23) May every direction Be auspicious for all travelers; And whatever aims they’re going for Be accomplished without any need for effort.
(24) May those who set out on boats and ships Succeed in fulfilling their hearts’ desires, And safely returning to the water’s shore, Rejoice with their families.
(25) May those who’ve strayed onto desolate detours Meet fellow travelers and, without fear Of thieves, bandits, tigers, and the like, Journey at ease, without fatigue.
(26) May those fallen asleep, become drunk, or deranged, In danger in trackless tracts, such as jungles and the like, As well as the young and the elderly without any guardian, Be protected by the gods.
(27) May they be free from all states that lack respite, Be endowed with belief in the facts, discriminating awareness, and affectionate care, Have a splendid sustenance, (appearance,) and demeanor, And always be mindful of previous lives.
(28) May everyone have inexhaustible wealth As with a Treasury of Space, And without dispute and without any violence, Use (it) according to their personal wills.
(29) May those limited beings who have little splendor Come to have magnificent splendor; And may those in difficult straits, with disfigured bodies, Come to have splendid beautiful bodies.
(30) As many women as there are in the world, May they attain the status of men; And may the lowly attain high position, And the arrogant become humble.
(31) By this positive force of mine, May all limited beings, without an exception, Rid themselves of all negative acts And always engage in what is constructive.
(32) May they never be parted from a bodhichitta aim; May they be absorbed in bodhisattva behavior; May they be taken care of by the Buddhas, And be rid of Mara’s demonic acts.
(33) May all limited beings Have immeasurably long lives; May they always live happily, Without the word “death” being even known.
(34) May all directions abound With pleasure groves of wish-granting trees, Replete with Buddhas and Buddhas’ spiritual offspring, Proclaiming the melodious Dharma.
(35) May the ground everywhere Lie as smooth as the palm of the hand, Free of pebbles and the like, Gentle, and be made of beryl.
(36) As the circles of disciples, May hosts of bodhisattvas be seated all around, Gracing the surface of the earth With their personal splendor.
(37) May all embodied beings Unceasingly hear the melodious Dharma From birds, from trees, From all beams of light, and even from the sky.
(38) May they always encounter the Buddhas And the Buddhas’ spiritual offspring, And make offerings to the Spiritual Teacher of the World, With clouds of offerings without any end.
(39) May the gods cause timely rains to fall And may there be bountiful harvests; May kings rule in accord with the Dharma And the people of the world thrive well.
(40) May medicines be potent, And the chanting of hidden mantras be successful; May dakini-witches, cannibal demons, and the likes Be endowed with compassionate minds.
(41) May no limited being ever have pain, Nor act with negative force, nor be sick, Nor be frightened, nor be derided, Nor ever be depressed.
(42) May the monasteries be well-established, Spread with reading and recitation; May the monastic community be always in harmony, And the monastic purpose be fulfilled.
(43) May monks who wish to train (their minds) Find isolated places, And being rid of all distractions, Absorb themselves in meditation, their minds fit for the task.
(44) May nuns have material support, And be rid of conflict and harm; And likewise may all renunciates Have unbroken ethical discipline.
(45) May those with poor ethical discipline, being disgusted, (Devote themselves) always to cleansing themselves of their negative karmic force; And once they’ve reached the better rebirth states, May their (vows of) tamed behavior remain unbroken.
(46) May the learned be shown respect, And receive alms (and material support). May their mental continuums be completely pure, And (their fame) renowned in all directions.
(47) Without experiencing the sufferings of the worse rebirth states, And without conduct that’s difficult to carry out, May (wandering beings) swiftly attain Buddhahood, With bodies superior to those of the gods.
(48) May all limited beings honor all the Buddhas, Numerous times (and in numerous ways), And may they always be happy (to the highest degree) With the inconceivable bliss of the Buddhas.
(49) May the bodhisattvas’ heart-wishes (To be able) to benefit the world be fulfilled, And may whatever those guardians have intended Indeed come to pass, for limited beings.
(50) May the self-realized pratyekabuddhas be happy, And likewise the shravaka listeners, (Always being honored with respect By gods, anti-gods, and by men.)
(51) And may I too, through the kindness of Manjughosha, Always gain mindfulness of previous lives And ordination as a renunciate, Till attaining the (realized bodhisattva first) stage of mind, the Joyous One.
(52) May I live (filled with strength) On a simple (diet) of food), even (just) grain; And may I obtain isolated places to live in, Filled with perfection, in all of my lives.
(53) Whenever I might wish to see Or might wish to ask about any little thing, May I behold the Guardian, Manjunatha himself, Without any impediment.
(54) Just as Manjushri works To fulfill the aims of all limited beings To the far reaches of space in the ten directions, May my behavior become just like that.
(55) For as long as space remains, And for as long as wandering beings remain, May I too remain for that long, Dispelling the sufferings of wandering beings.
(56) Whatever sufferings wandering beings might have, May all of them ripen on me, And through the bodhisattva assembly, May wandering beings enjoy happiness.
(57) May the teachings, the sole medicine for the sufferings of wandering beings And the source of all happiness, Continue to endure for a very long time, With material support and shows of respect.
(58) I prostrate to Manjughosha, through whose kindness My thought has become constructive; I prostrate as well to my spiritual teacher and friend, Through whose kindness, I’ve been able to have it expand.
This concludes Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior, composed by the great teacher Shantideva (first half of the eighth century C. E.). It was translated (into Tibetan), edited, and settled upon from a Kashmiri manuscript by the learned Indian master Sarvajna-deva and the editor-translator monk Peltseg (early ninth century C. E.). It was then corrected in accordance with a Magadha edition and commentary, retranslated and settled upon by the learned Indian master Dharma-shribhadra and the editor-translator monks Rinchen-zangpo (958 – 1051) and Shakya-lodro. Then, at a later time, it was further corrected, retranslated, and finalized by the learned Indian master Sumati-kirti and the editor-translator monk Loden-sherab (1059 – 1109). http://www.BerzinArchives.com /web/x/nav/group.html_1487505749.html