A Detailed Exposition of the Vimalakirti Sutra
by Grandmaster Lu, Living Buddha Lian Sheng of the True Buddha School
Translated into English by the True Buddha School Vimalakirti Translation Team
Discourse 25, 13 August 2022 - Chapter One—Buddhaverse (Continued)
They appeared most magnificent, even when they had forgone all worldly embellishments. Their fame and reputation far exceeded the height of Mount Meru, and their deep faith was as strong as a vajra. Their dharma treasure showered nectar everywhere upon all beings as the most marvelous sound ever heard. They understood the profundity of the origination of causes and conditions and cut off all wrong views.
We will now talk about the next phrase of the Vimalakirti Sutra:
…upon all beings as the most marvelous sound ever heard.
The dharma that the great bodhisattvas speak on is the most marvelous and sublime. Their voices and the content of their dharma teachings are likewise marvelous and sublime. When you hear them, you feel deeply touched and experience their marvel.
Do you also find Grandmaster’s and Vimalakirti’s teachings marvelous and sublime? This phrase reminds you to use your heart to feel the marvel of the great bodhisattvas’ dharma teachings.
On the contrary, most sutra expositions—whether on television or during live discourses—are very dry. The speakers do not smile or laugh, and rarely say anything sublime. They simply read the sutra text and give superficial explanations. The listeners doze off while the speaker is in a daze themself. Everyone falls into dead silence. This will never happen during the dharma teachings of the great bodhisattvas.
When Grandmaster gives a dharma teaching, at times, I even sing a song. No matter which songs I sing, whether they are children’s songs or love songs, they all turn into Buddhist songs. Let me sing a song for you now. It’s originally a children’s song called “The Old Pine,” but I will alter its lyrics: “I’m an old spiritual cultivator, and I am always diligent. Never scared of demons, and never afraid of monsters. I’m standing in-between heaven and earth. There’s only me, the ol’ spiritual cultivator.”
I have sung this song before: “I’m like a little fish in your lotus pond. Waiting to gaze at the bright white moonlight with you. After swimming across all four seasons, the lotus remains fragrant. I’m waiting for you to play in the water…” This is also a Buddhist song! Why is it so? I am not talking about the moonlight on the lotus ponds. I am wishing that pure lotus blossoms bloom all over the lotus ponds and that all lotuses will always be fragrant across all seasons. A dharma teaching should be like the pure lotus, radiating fragrance all over.
In my dharma teachings, I also sing, “Thinking of you in the sky; thinking of you in front of me; thinking of you in my mind; thinking of you in my heart.” This is not a love song; it is a Buddhist song. I am referring to the visualization of our yidam. When I am thinking of you, you are in the sky; when I am thinking of you, you are in front of me; when I am thinking of you, you are on my mind; and when I am thinking of you, you are in my heart. Of course, it is a Buddhist song! What else would it be?
This is …the most marvelous sound ever heard.
When the great bodhisattvas are seated on the dharma throne, there will never be dead silence, where everybody’s asleep. They sing and tell jokes... producing the most marvelous sound. Even love songs can become buddhadharma. Isn’t that so? Another song, “Firewood, rice, oil, salt, sauce, vinegar, and tea; little by little, happiness is growing. The moon is crescent, and I am so in love. Having you, everything is good.” This is also a Buddhist song—as we often say, “We need to take care of our tummies too in our worship of the buddhas.” Only when you have all these daily necessities can you cultivate spiritually. Without money, it would be difficult for you to cultivate spiritually.
… the most marvelous sound ever heard.
It means that you can touch people’s hearts and make them listen and understand. This is how a dharma teaching should be. The teachings of the great bodhisattvas are the most marvelous and sublime sounds ever heard.
Om mani padme hum.
Next discourse on the Vimalakirti Sutra: Discourse 26, 14 August 2022 - Chapter One—Buddhaverse (Continued)
Previous discourse on the Vimalakirti Sutra: Discourse 24, 7 August 2022 - Chapter One—Buddhaverse (Continued)
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Full webcast of 2022.08.13 Golden Mother Group Practice (Ling Shen Ching Tze Temple, Redmond, USA) and dharma discourse with English interpretation: https://youtu.be/GlyI9O_ER4o