Chan Newsletter

Month: dec 1992

December 31, 1992 

The 18 Realms (Lecture on Surangama Sutra)

(Lecture given by Master Sheng-yen on the Surangama Sutra on May 3, 1987.) I began speaking about the 18 realms last week. As you may remember, this refers to the sense organ, sense object, and sense consciousness of each of the six senses: seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, feeling, and thinking. Note also that the Chinese word for "realm" has more than one meaning. Besides "definition," "specification," or "domain," it can also have the meaning of "dharma body," "phenomena," or "activity."more

December 5, 1992 

Seven-day Retreat Talk (Day 7)

(By Ch'an Master Sheng-yen. Morning Talk December 5, 1992.) As the retreat ends, I wish to tell everyone that spiritual health is much more important than physical health, and that wealth of the mind is a greater fortune than material wealth. I am not saying that physical health and material wealth are unimportant, just less important. We understand the concept of health by knowing what is unhealthy. Overeating or not eating enough is unhealthy. Being too cold or too hot is unhealthy. more

December 4, 1992 

Seven-day Retreat Talk (Day 6)

(By Ch'an Master Sheng-yen. Morning Talk December 4, 1992.) There are many reasons practitioners do not attain the Way or derive much benefit from cultivation of the path. Two big reasons are lack of determination and perseverance. It's like when you travel to a destination you've never been to before. It seems far away and to take forever to get there. People who have never seen their self-nature can be impatient in their desire to experience it.more


Practicing Prostrations

[By Chan Master Sheng Yen (Retreat Evening Talk December 4, 1992)] There are four kinds of prostrations. The first kind is for fulfilling wishes. When we prostrate, we ask the buddhas and bodhisattvas to help us. We can do this prostration when we encounter difficulties or misfortune. It can also be done for others. If someone is not doing well, you can prostrate for the Buddha's help. This prostration can also be used to avoid accidents, sickness, or to prolong life.more

December 3, 1992 

Seven-day Retreat Talk (Day 5)

(By Ch'an Master Sheng-yen. Breakfast Talk December 3, 1992.) How do we obtain wisdom? Many practitioners believe Buddhist wisdom comes from enlightenment. So then, how does one become enlightened? Wisdom and enlightenment manifest when your focus changes from the self; when greed, hatred, ignorance, arrogance, suspicion and doubt, which arise from self-centeredness, no longer manifest. One accomplishes this through methods of practice. more