Sunday, October 26, 2014

The 6th Patriarch: Mind training must be centered by Pure Awareness of Prajna Wisdom

"Good fellow practitioners, people in confusion verbally recite Mahaprajnaparamita, and while they are reciting it the deluded and evil thoughts arise. If they devote to mind's effortless effort* thought after thought, they realize its Dharma-nature of true suchness. To realize this Dharma-nature is the Mind Dharma of Prajna, while to devote to mind training in accordance with Dharma-nature is the Act of Prajna. If you do not train your mind in this way, you are ordinary people. If you do your mind training in this way even for one thought, you yourselves are equal to the Buddha.

Good fellow practitioners, ordinary being is Buddha, and vexation is bodhi (enlightenment). A confused preceding thought makes one an ordinary being, while an enlightened succeeding thought makes one a Buddha. A preceding thought that attaches to sense objects is vexation, while a succeeding thought that frees one from attachment to sense objects is bodhi.

Good fellow practitioners, Mahaprajnaparamita is the most honorable, the supreme, and the foremost. It has no abiding, no going, and no coming. The Buddha of past, present, and future manifest from it. You should use great prajna  wisdom to break through; the vexation and mind exhaustion related to the five skandas*. If you do mind training in this way, you will surely attain the Buddhahood, and turn the three poisons (greed, hatred and ignorance) into discipline, samadhi and wisdom"......from the 2nd chapter of the translation/commentary by Master Guohan of The Platform Sutra of Sixth Patriarch Huineng.

*Pure Awareness of Prajna Wisdom: awareness of everything outside, everything inside (thoughts and emotions) and body sensations, without injecting your self centeredness into that awareness by discriminating and creating attachments.

*Full Definition of SKANDHAS. Buddhism. : the five transitory personal elements of body, perception, conception, volition, and consciousness whose temporary concatenation forms the individual self.

a half day or day of silent meditation/contemplation

For this retreat, if you are not a Chan (Chinese Zen) practitioner, you may bring your own silent meditation/ contemplation practice. If you do not presently have a practice, or are interested in Chan meditation practice, please contact Adrian a couple of days before the retreat.

Bring your own cushion; chairs are available. Bring your own lunch, and enough to share with others. Limited seating, please RSVP.
Contact Adrian Symonds: 250-650-9055 or
Oct 5, Nov 2, Dec 2:  8:30 a.m to 5 p.m. – Salish House, Lewis Park Recreation Centre, Courtenay
Cost: by donation
1. MAIN WEBSITE: Cosmos Chan Zen Community at
2. Master Cheng Yen in Facebook;
3. Listen to dharma talks with Gilbert Gutierrez
4. Listen/download audio talks from the Tallahassee   Chan group at
5. the Western Chan Fellowship at
6. Questions?  Adrian at 250 650 9055; and this blog

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