THE SAGELY CITY OF TEN THOUSAND BUDDHAS

The Traditions of the City of 10,000 Buddhas
The Six Great Guiding Principles

The City of Ten Thousand Buddhas has Six Great Principles which are the goals for cultivation. They are: do not fight, do not be greedy, do not seek, do not be selfish, do not pursue personal advantage, and do not lie. If you can understand the true and actual meaning of the Six Great Principles, then you will not have come to the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas in vain.

The Six Great Principles are six bright paths. They are also known as six kinds of wisdom, six kinds of demon-quelling pestles, and six kinds of monster-spotting mirrors.

No fighting, no greed, no seeking, no selfishness, no pursuing personal advantage, and no lying: These are the basis for being a person, the foundation for cultivation, and the standard for government.

The Buddhadharma for beginners is no fighting, no greed, no seeking, no selfishness, no pursuing personal advantage, and no lying. If you can remember these six great guidelines, you can become a Buddha and then some.

I am speaking these six great guidelines for people who want to become Buddhas, people who want to become Bodhisattvas, and people who want to become Hearers and Arhats. These are the most important principles. If you can put them into practice, you may use them your whole life, but you won't be able to exhaust them! You won't be able to use them up.

If you want to be a genuine Buddhist disciple, you must certainly not fight, not be greedy, not seek, not be selfish, not pursue personal advantage, and not lie. Ever since I was little, I have followed these six bright paths of not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying. No matter what it is, if others want it, then I don't want it. If others don't want it, then I pick it up. That's the way I am. Can all of you act the same way? If so, then I congratulate you for being good Buddhists.

Cultivation consists of not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying. If you can hold firmly to these six great principles, you are true disciples of the Buddha. If you don't walk upon these six great paths, then perhaps you cannot be of much benefit to Buddhism.

What are the precepts? They are just: not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying. That's the precepts. Don't go looking for the precepts in the precept manuals. These things can be done by everyone. Everyone can practice them.

What is the most important aspect of the Dharma? Not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying. Every day, use these six great guidelines as a yardstick to measure your conduct on that day. If it's not up to standard, then you should immediately rectify it. When you are free of errors and only have merit and virtue, then you can be considered a Buddhist disciple. These are the six great principles of the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas. I hope everyone can follow them, everyone can become enlightened, and everyone can become a Buddha.

If you want to learn to have genuine wisdom, you must first cut off desire. How can you cut off desire? By not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying. These six great principles are the Dharma jewel for cutting off desire and obtaining genuine wisdom.

What are deviant views? If you fight, that's deviant views. If you're greedy, that's deviant views. If you seek, that's deviant views. If you want to be selfish, that's deviant views. If you want to benefit yourself, that's also deviant views. If you always lie, that's deviant views as well.

You have studied and practiced Buddhism for several decades, yet you're still greedy for money! You're still seeking after fame and profit! There you are, ceaselessly fighting and being greedy. That's because you don't understand how to study and practice Buddhism. If you understood how, you wouldn't want these things.

In cultivating the Way, you must base yourself on not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying. Only then will you have proper knowledge and proper views and be able to cultivate the Way. If you don't cultivate these six and yet you want to say you're a cultivator, it's impossible.

If a person has thoughts of fighting and thoughts of greed, if he seeks fame and profit, if he advertises himself or gets people to worship him, if he is selfish and out for personal advantage, and if he doesn't tell the truth, you should know that such a person has the state of a demon.

If you are able to not fight, not be greedy, not seek, not be selfish, not pursue personal advantage, and not lie, then that is the Proper Dharma dwelling in the world.

Our goal in cultivation is to stop all thoughts of fighting, thoughts of greed, thoughts of seeking, thoughts of selfishness, thoughts of pursuing personal advantage, and thoughts of lying. We want to prevent them from acting up. At that point, wisdom will come forth and emit great light, shining through the darkness of ignorance. Then we will be able to understand our mind and see our nature, and attain the goal of our cultivation.

Not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying--these are all considered the true mind. When the mind applies effort truly, all karmic hindrances will be eradicated. If the mind is not true, then your karmic hindrances will follow you.

If you can carefully uphold the rules of not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying, the Buddhas of the ten directions will always protect you and be mindful of you. They will always come to bestow aid upon you.

How can you be free of afflictions? The method is extremely simple--just not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying. If you can do that, then all your outflows will be eliminated, and your afflictions will also be subdued.

Why is it that you cannot be at ease and without obstructions? Simply because you still have fighting, greed, seeking, selfishness, and the thought to pursue personal advantage. Therefore you cannot be at ease.

What is genuine science? Not fighting is science. Not being greedy is science. Not seeking anything is science. Not being selfish--now that's true science. Not pursuing personal advantage--that's also true science. Further, if you can also not tell lies, then that's genuine science.

Those involved in the work of translating the scriptures must certainly accord with the six bright, great paths of not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying.

If we want the nation to do well, we must use the six great principles--the six great guidelines. They are the best method for turning back the tides of destiny.

If we want to help this world, first we must not fight, not be greedy, not seek, not be selfish, not pursue personal advantage, and not lie. We must set an example, be a model for others. That way, the world will become more and more peaceful each day.

No matter what profession, what sect, what school, or what religion it is, if it can do its best to benefit others and not benefit itself, then it is authentic. To put it more clearly, if a person helps others on the surface, but inside he hopes to gain something--if he isn't greedy for wealth, then he's greedy for sex; if he isn't greedy for sex, then he's greedy for fame, or else for profit--then he isn't authentic.

I have explained it for you this way and that, but it's just the same old thing. The principle seems very simple, but it's not easy for you to actually do it. If you could do it, you would have become Buddhas long ago. If you actually put these six great principles into practice, and you don't become Buddhas, I will remain in the hells and never come out. I will guarantee in good faith that people who cultivate following these six great principles will definitely become Buddhas.

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