At that time Universal Worthy Bodhisattva said to all the Bodhisattvas, “Disciples of the Buddha, Bodhisattvas Mahasattvas, should embody ten kinds of patience. If they acquire these patiences, they will attain the Ground of Unhindered Patience of All Bodhisattvas, and be unimpeded and unlimited with respect to all Buddhadharmas.
What are the ten? They are Patience with Sounds, Patience with the Agreeable, Patience with the State of Mind in which No Mental Objects Arise, Patience in Perceiving All as Illusions, Patience in Perceiving All as Mirages, Patience in Perceiving All as Dreams, Patience in Perceiving All as Echoes, Patience in Perceiving All as Reflections, Patience in Perceiving All as Conjured Effects, and Patience in Perceiving All as the Void. These ten kinds of patience have been proclaimed, are being proclaimed, and shall be proclaimed by all Buddhas in the three periods of time.
Disciples of the Buddha, what constitutes the Bodhisattva Mahasattva's Patience with Sounds? It means that when he hears the sounds of Dharma being proclaimed by all the Buddhas, he is not alarmed, frightened or overawed. Rather, with deep faith and understanding, he awakens to the Dharma, pursues it with delight, recollects it with a focused mind, learns and practices it, and abides steadfastly in it. This is called Patience with Sounds, the first kind of patience of a Bodhisattva Mahasattva.
Disciples of the Buddha, what constitutes the Bodhisattva Mahasattva’s Patience with the Agreeable? The Bodhisattva ponders and contemplates all Buddhadharmas, regards them impartially and does not violate them, complies with and understands them, purifies his mind with them, abides properly in and practices them, and enters and becomes accomplished in them. This is called Patience with the Agreeable, the second kind of patience of a Bodhisattva Mahasattva.
Disciples of the Buddha, what constitutes the Bodhisattva Mahasattva’s Patience with the State of Mind in which No Mental Objects Arise? Disciples of the Buddha, this Bodhisattva Mahasattva perceives neither the slightest dharma coming into being, nor the slightest dharma ceasing to be. Why is this? Where there is no coming into being, there is no ceasing to be. Where there is no ceasing to be, there is no reaching an end. Where there is no reaching an end, there is freedom from defilement. Where there is freedom from defilement, there is no discrimination. Where there is no discrimination, there is no attachment to a location. Where there is no attachment to a location, there is tranquility. Where there is tranquility, there is renouncing of desires. Where there is renouncing of desires, there is absence of effort. Where there is effortlessness, there is no longing. Where there is no longing, there is no residing. Where there is no residing, there is no going or coming. This is called Patience with the State of Mind in which No Mental Objects Arise, the third kind of patience of a Bodhisattva Mahasattva.
Disciples of the Buddha, what constitutes the Bodhisattva Mahasattva’s Patience in Perceiving All as Illusions? Disciples of the Buddha, this Bodhisattva Mahasattva realizes that all dharmas invariably are like illusions arising from causes and conditions. Through a single dharma, he understands many dharmas. Through many dharmas, he understands a single dharma.
Once this Bodhisattva realizes that all dharmas are like illusions, he fathoms lands, beings, and dharma realms. He realizes the equality of worlds, the equality of the appearances of Buddhas, and equality of the three periods of time. He accomplishes all kinds of spiritual powers and transformations.
Just as an illusion is not an elephant, not a horse, not a carriage, not a pedestrian, not a man, not a woman, not a boy, not a girl, not a tree, not a leaf, not a flower, not a fruit, not earth, not water, not fire, not wind, not day, not night, not sun, not moon, not half a month, not one month, not one year, not a hundred years, not one eon, not many eons, not concentration, not distraction, nor is it homogeneous, nor heterogeneous, nor uniform, nor variable, nor broad, nor narrow, nor abundant, nor scarce, nor finite, nor infinite, nor coarse, nor fine, nor any of the various kinds of phenomena or their aspects. The various phenomena are not illusions. Illusions are not the various phenomena. Yet, due to illusions, various different phenomena manifest.
The Bodhisattva Mahasattva is the same way. He regards all worlds as illusory—namely, the world of karma, the world of afflictions, the world of lands, the world of dharmas, the world of time, the world of inclinations, the world of formation, the world of destruction, the world of movement, and the world of deliberate action.
When the Bodhisattva Mahasattva contemplates all worlds as illusory, he perceives no beings coming into being, no beings ceasing to be, no lands coming into being, no lands ceasing to be, no dharmas coming into being, and no dharmas ceasing to be.
He does not see a past that can be differentiated, a future that is evolving, or a present that maintains its status quo even for the space of a single thought.
He neither contemplates bodhi nor differentiates bodhi. He neither sees the Buddhas’ appearance nor sees the Buddhas’ nirvana. He neither sees them as having dwelt in great vows, nor sees them as having entered the proper position of Buddhahood. He never goes beyond their being equally illusory.
Although this Bodhisattva accomplishes Buddhalands, he knows that lands have no differentiation. Although he is accomplished in the realms of sentient beings, he knows that there is no differentiation among sentient beings. Although he contemplates the entire Dharma Realm, he abides peacefully in the Dharma nature, tranquil and unmoving. Although he comprehends the equality of the three periods of time, he does not violate the convention of differentiating the three periods of time. Although he realizes (the emptiness of) the skandhas and the locations, he forever severs all dependencies. Although he liberates sentient beings, he realizes that all in the Dharma Realm are equal and devoid of the various differences. Although he knows that all dharmas are beyond language and inexpressible, he always speaks the Dharma with infinite eloquence. Although he is not attached to the work of transforming sentient beings, he does not renounce great compassion, and he turns the Dharma wheel to rescue all.
Although he expounds past causes and conditions for them, he knows that causes and conditions are essentially devoid of evolvement. This is called Patience in Perceiving All as Illusions, the fourth kind of patience of a Bodhisattva Mahasattva.
Disciples of the Buddha, what constitutes the Bodhisattva Mahasattva’s Patience in Perceiving All as Mirages? Disciples of the Buddha, this Bodhisattva Mahasattva knows that all worldly phenomena resemble mirages. Like mirages, they have no location, are neither inside nor outside, neither existent nor nonexistent, neither annihilated nor eternal, neither of one color nor of many colors nor colorless. They are simply spoken of and manifested according to the beings of the world.
The Bodhisattva in this way practices genuine contemplation. He understands all dharmas and at once realizes all levels of cultivation, thus attaining perfection. This is called Patience in Perceiving All as Mirages, the fifth kind of patience of aBodhisattva Mahasattva.
Disciples of the Buddha, what is meant by the Bodhisattva Mahasattva’s Patience in Perceiving All as Dreams? Disciples of the Buddha, this Bodhisattva Mahasattva knows that all worldly phenomena resemble dreams. Like dreams, they are neither of the world nor apart from the world; they are neither of the Desire Realm nor of the Form Realm nor of the Formless Realm; they neither come into being nor cease to be; they are neither defiled nor pure, and yet they make their appearance.
The Bodhisattva Mahasattva is the same way. He understands all in the world are the same as dreams in their absence of change. They resemble dreams in their (lack of) inherent nature, in the attachments they produce, in their separateness from the inherent nature, in their fundamental nature, in their manifestations, in their lack of disparities, in their discriminatory thinking, and in the insight derived when one awakens from them. This is called Patience in Perceiving All as Dreams, the sixth kind of patience of a Bodhisattva Mahasattva.
Disciples of the Buddha, what constitutes the Bodhisattva Mahasattva’s Patience in Perceiving All as Echoes? Disciples of the Buddha, this Bodhisattva Mahasattva listens to Buddhas speak the Dharma, contemplates the nature of all dharmas, perfects his study and cultivation, and arrives at the opposite shore. He knows that all sounds are like echoes in that they neither come nor go, but merely seem to exist.
Disciples of the Buddha, this Bodhisattva Mahasattva contemplates how the Thus Come Ones’ sound comes neither from within nor from without nor from in between within and without. Although he comprehends that their sound comes neither from within nor from without nor from in between, he realizes that the words and phrases spoken are the manifestation of skillful and clever expedients.
Like echoes in a valley, this sound arises from conditions yet remains unopposed to the Dharma nature. It causes all sentient beings to gain the kind of understanding appropriate to their individual differences, thereby enabling them to cultivate and study. Consider Lord Sakra’s wife, the asura king’s daughter Saci, who can, without conscious intention, produce a thousand kinds of sound in a single sound. The Bodhisattva Mahasattva is the same way. He enters the realm of nondiscrimination, masters a versatile sound that adapts to beings of different capacities, and eternally turns the Dharma wheel in boundless worlds.
This Bodhisattva Mahasattva can expertly observe all sentient beings and expound the Dharma to them by means of the hallmark of a vast, long tongue. His voice pervades the lands of the ten directions without hindrance, enabling all therein to hear the Dharma as suited to their individual differences. Though the Bodhisattva knows that sound arises from nowhere, he manifests sounds everywhere. Though he knows there is nothing to say, he extensively expounds all the Dharma. The impartiality of his wonderful voice allows every kind of sentient being to understand in his or her own way and to attain thorough realization through his or her own wisdom. This is called Patience in Perceiving All as Echoes, the seventh kind of patience of a Bodhisattva Mahasattva.
Disciples of the Buddha, what constitutes the Bodhisattva Mahasattva’s Patience in Perceiving All as Reflections? Disciples of the Buddha, this Bodhisattva Mahasattva is neither born in the world nor dies in the world; is neither within the world nor outside of the world; neither cultivates in the world nor fails to cultivate in the world; is neither the same as nor different from those in the world; neither goes to the world nor fails to go to the world; neither dwells in the world nor does not dwell in the world; and is neither of the world nor beyond the world.
He neither cultivates the Bodhisattva’s practices nor renounces his magnificent vows. He attaches neither to reality nor to unreality. Although he constantly practices the Dharma of all Buddhas, he is able to manage all worldly affairs. He neither drifts with the worldly currents nor dwells in the Dharma flow.
It is like how the sun, the moon, men, women, houses, mountains, forests, rivers, springs, and so forth are reflected in oil, water, physical entities, gems, mirrors, and other clear surfaces. A reflection is neither the same as nor different from the oil and other substances; it neither separates from nor merges with them. A reflection neither gets carried adrift in a river or stream nor sinks in a pond or well, appearing therein yet all the while untainted. Sentient beings may perceive a reflection as being at one location and not another, but although objects far and near all have reflections, the distance of a reflection does not correspond to the distance of its object.
The Bodhisattva Mahasattva is the same way. He can perceive his own body as well as those of others. His wisdom allows him to perceive these states, yet he does not interpret them as dual and speak of himself and others as being different. He simultaneously appears everywhere in his own country and other countries, all of which are distinctively different from each other.
Just as a seed does not have roots, shoots, stems, nodes, branches, or leaves, yet is capable of producing such things, so too is the Bodhisattva Mahasattva capable in the same way. With expedient means, he distinguishes duality in that which is nondual, and yet he thoroughly understands the nonobstructive reality. This is called Patience in Perceiving All as Reflections, the eighth kind of patience of a Bodhisattva Mahasattva.
When the Bodhisattva Mahasattva achieves this patience, then without traveling to the lands of the ten directions, he is able to appear everywhere in all Buddhalands. He neither leaves this place nor goes to those places. Like a reflection, he appears everywhere, and thus, his practice is unobstructed.
He causes sentient beings to perceive his different bodies as having the same material reality as all worldly objects. Yet these different forms are actually not different. Difference and nondifference are mutually nonobstructive. This Bodhisattva is born in the Thus Come One’s lineage, pure and unimpeded in his body, speech, and thought. Therefore, he is able to attain a pure body capable of assuming boundless physical forms.
Disciples of the Buddha, what constitutes the Bodhisattva Mahasattva’s Patience in Perceiving All as Conjured Effects? Disciples of the Buddha, this Bodhisattva Mahasattva knows that all worldly phenomena resemble conjured effects. That is, all sentient beings' mental deeds resemble conjured effects, for they result from awareness and thoughts; all worldly activities resemble conjured effects, for they result from discriminations; all misinterpretations of suffering and happiness resemble conjured effects, for they result from delusive craving; all unreal, worldly dharmas resemble conjured effects, for they manifest through language and speech; and all afflictions and distinctions resemble conjured effects, for they result from cognition.
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