Daily Dharma – Jan. 13, 2018

The Bodhisattva-mahāsattva also should know the following truth. All things are insubstantial. They are as they are. Things are not perverted. They do not move. They do not go. They do not turn. They have nothing substantial just as the sky has not. They are inexplicable. They are not born. They do not appear. They do not rise. They are nameless. They are formless. They have no property. They are immeasurable and limitless. They have no obstacle or hindrance. He should see all this. Things can exist only by dependent origination. Only perverted people say, ‘Things are permanent and pleasant.’ This truth is the second thing he should approach.

The Buddha gives this explanation to Mañjuśrī in Chapter Fourteen of the Lotus Sūtra in which he describes the peaceful practices of a Bodhisattva. The Buddha does not see the world as we do. This section explains how changing our view changes the world. When we no longer see beings with power to overwhelm us, and see beings in whom delusions have been created, we see our abilities to cut the root of those delusions and benefit them. These passages are what make the Lotus Sutra difficult to believe and understand, since they go against our habits of manipulating the world to become happy. As we learn to work with our minds, then we truly change the world.

The Daily Dharma is produced by the Lexington Nichiren Buddhist Community. To subscribe to the daily emails, visit zenzaizenzai.com