Nothing To Be Given
There has never been anything to give to people, only folks who have been able to point out the road for people. An ancient worthy said, “Having some attainment is the jackal’s yelp; having no attainment is the lion’s roar.”
Buddha was someone who had mastered adaptation: in the course of forty-nine years, in more than three hundred and sixty assemblies where he taught the dharma, he guided people according to their individual faculties. Thus he preached with one voice through all realms, while sentient beings each obtained benefits according to their kind. It’s like: “One gust of the east wind, and the myriad grasses all bend down.” the dharma preached by the Buddha is also like this.
If he had had the intent to create benefit in all realms, then this would have been preaching the dharma egotistically. To want to cause myriad beings to gain deliverance according to their kind – isn’t this after all impossible? Haven’t you read how Sariputta, at the assembly where the perfection of wisdom was preached, asked Manjushri, “Don’t all buddhas, the tathagatas, awaken to the realm of truth?” Manjushri said, “No, Sariputta. Even the buddhas cannot be found: how could there be buddhas who awaken to the realm of truth? Even the realm of truth cannot be found: how could it be realized by the buddhas?” See how those two men spurred each other on this way. When did they ever set their minds on anything? All the buddhas and all the patriarchs since antiquity have had a style like this in helping people. It’s just that later descendants have lost the essence of the school and set up their own individual sects, making up strange things and concocting marvels.
It is beautiful when Ta Hui simply quotes the words of the awakened ones. But the moment he brings himself in, the whole glory and the splendor is lost. He is trying hard to pretend that he is enlightened, but he cannot hide it – he cannot hide it from eyes which can look deep into his very self. It will be a great event when he realizes his pretensions.
It will not be difficult for him to become enlightened. All that he has to know is that he does not know, and that will be the immediate transformation. He knows too much and his experience is absolutely nil. but I hope that slowly, slowly he is coming closer to realize this, because now he is not adding his own statements, he is just quoting the buddhas.
The first sutra is a very ancient one it has not even originated with Gautam Buddha. Perhaps all the awakened ones have emphasized the fact – they have to because it is so real and so significant, it has to be told to the people – that the master cannot give anything to you. If he could, he would have given you everything. But as far as enlightenment is concerned it is absolutely your individual, private territory. Nobody can interfere with it.