How to Develop the Bodhi-Citta


Part II

Written by Buddhist Yogi C. M. Chen
Edited by Dr. Yutang Lin

Chapter I   What Does Bodhi-citta Mean
Chapter II   How to Develop the Bodhi-citta of Will
Chapter III   How to Perform the Bodhi-citta of Conduct
Chapter IV   How to Develop the Bodhi-citta of Victorious Significance
Chapter V   How to Develop the Bodhi-citta of Samadhi
Chapter VI   How to Develop the Bodhi-citta of Kunda Which Contains the Red Bodhi and the White Bodhi in a Psycho-Physical System of Holy Quality

Chapter IV: How to Develop the Bodhi-citta of Victorious Significance?

As the previous two kinds of Bodhi-citta should be measured by the victorious signification of sunyata, and the aim of the Bodhi-citta is toward the victorious signification of sunyata, this third Bodhi-citta should be well-recognized and carefully practiced.

The ultimate benefit and final goal of every good Bodhi-citta conduct are both related to sunyata. If sunyata has not been practiced, all good conducts will lead the practitioner to fall into heaven, which is one state of the transmigration. Therefore, readers are advised to pay much more attention to this chapter:

A. Three Emancipations

Emancipation has been wrongly used by those ambitious politicians. Actually, "Emancipation from the bondage of the soil is no freedom for the tree", as Rabindranath Tagore asserted. Most good people, after they become free from evil conduct, are fettered by good conduct from which grows the bondage of pride, selfishness, volition, and ambition. The so-called Bodhi-citta is a mind of both wisdom and compassion -- not only the latter one. For he who has not become free from the ignorance of egoism, all the good Bodhi-citta conduct becomes mundane and far apart from the emancipation of sunyata. One, therefore, has to practice the following meditations to make the Bodhicitta of Victorious Significance stronger:

  1. No form -- One should know in one's practice that every Dharma, either good or evil, has no form. It is changeable and transmutable. When one does a good action, one should not hold it as good, as something one should be proud of. It is just like the hair of a lady; at some times it is fashionable one way, but then it is no longer in vogue. That is why, "To make a vow for life is to make oneself a slave", as Voltaire said. It does not mean that one should not vow, but that one should know the vow should be identified with sunyata.

  2. No will -- Every will is itself of sunyata; as one's consciousness is of sunyata, so is one's will. One should develop the will within the sunyata, but not with egoism. Although the mirror is sunyata in nature, the shadow thereof is also sunyata in condition. We should have beautiful shadows in the mirror instead of ugly ones, peaceful ones instead of wrathful ones.

  3. No birth -- Everything, either of mentality or materiality, is of sunyata. When it arises it is like a bubble of water; when it vanishes it returns into the water.

Because every sentient being does not know this truth, he is always in sorrow and tangled by wills, either good or evil, and by forms,either beautiful or ugly. So he is transmigrating and turning around without ceasing in the circle of death and rebirth. One has to meditate on the sunyata of non-birth, and for those who do not meditate on the sunyata, one should develop the Bodhi-citta of Will and Conduct to lure them to learn the truth of non-birth.

B. Six Similes

  1. The sunyata in the simile of a flower in the air.

    When one does some good conduct, one should think that conduct is just like a flower in the air, which is like the real flower but not always there; sometimes maybe it disappears. All the surroundings and the people and things concerned with the conducts are in the nature of sunyata. There is no real thing which should be held to steadfastly.

  2. The sunyata in the simile of the second moon reflecting in the ocean.

    When one establishes a Tantric Mandala for the sake of sentient beings, one should think that all the Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, and Gods in the Mandala, and the sentient beings in the six realms are like the second, or the shadow of, the moon reflecting in every river and ocean. They are not the real moon; the real moon has no egoism, no selfishness, nor entity, no existence, and nothing which should be held.

  3. The sunyata in the simile of shadows in the mirror.

    When one has converted somebody who recently has joined the Order of Buddhists, or when one has become disappointed by the lack of results to convert that one whom one has tried many times to persuade, one must think that the beautiful shadow in the mirror is like the former, and that the ugly one is like the latter. Both are only shadows; there is nothing to be delighted in nor to be hated. Yet one would like the ugly one to be a beautiful one in his doing; the ugly one may by and by become aware of his own nature of sunyata.

  4. The sunyata in the simile of dream.

    When one works in the plastic society and passes through all the showy cities, poor villages, and magnificent landscapes, one must think that one's self is in a long dream, the same as those short ones each night. The one who is angry with me or kind to me are both unreal, yet one has to try to make the angry one happy and the kind and lovely ones, right and merciful; in so doing, one will gradually recognize the truth.

  5. The sunyata in the simile of the dew on the grass.

    When a good conduct is done, for instance, when a bridge is made completely for the passenger, one has to think of it: Every merit is not durable; it may be changeable For the time being it seems very new; after some time it may be broken and destroyed; yet for sentient beings at this moment, whatever I can do to help, I should do. There is nothing which is able to remain forever. Everything is like the dew on the grass; when the sun rises it will very soon be gone. One should not hold to things steadfastly.

  6. The sunyata in the simile of lightening.

    When one honors his guru with many precious gems, or adorns some new monastery or pagoda, it seems very beautiful and delightful. One must then think of this simile. The lightning happens in the sky and suddenly disappears. One must not hold it tight in one's mind. Even though beauty is created to make Gurus happy and to make magnificent the monastery for luring sentient beings to believe in Buddhism, in the end all must recognize that every Dharma is itself void in nature -- temporarily appearing as does the lightning under certain conditions.

Besides the above six similes, there are eight negations and eighteen kinds of voidness which have been taught by Buddha in the Mahayana. Please refer to my book Buddhist Meditation: Systematic and Practical.

C. Change oneself with others.

The sunyata truth does not mean that everything is void, but it is as we have seen from the above six similes. Everything has its appearance as a shadow inside of which there is no self. It is non-egoism. The common fool is always a slave of his self. If the ego is void, he is really emancipated. Hence, the only inner foe to cause one sorrow, to increase one's pride, to run up one's prejudice, to heighten one's anger, and to enhance one's lust is oneself, and not another. When I was visited by many visitors I was asked, "Am I disturbing you?" I always answered, "No! If I do not disturb myself even Mao is not sufficient to disturb me."

When one's ego is so strong, others such as his friends, his relatives, his nation. his society, his party, and his related sentient beings -- all will be victims of his selfishness; that is why Mao is the enemy of his members Liu and Pan and Ho and even other communist countries. That is why one should change his own ego with other's when one's ego is destroyed. Egoism will become altruism and all the Bodhi-citta conducts might be carried out rightly and profitably,

Furthermore, one must be aware of these following dangers: When one does the good Bodhi-citta conduct with vinaya, it may cause others to be more harmful; with patience to be more cruel; with charity to be more lustful; with diligence to be more idle; with concentration to be more heedless; with wisdom to be selfish. It seems that non-egoism is only helping one's self, and altruism is harmful to others. Hence, one must know that after the others have been lured into the Order of Buddhism, one has to teach them the same selflessness of sunyata; then they will be really and ultimately saved.

Hence, a Buddhist should hold the following idea:

  1. No man is more cheated than the selfish man.
  2. Human history is the sad result of each one looking out for himself.
  3. Selfish people are incapable of loving others; they are not capable of loving themselves either.
  4. He who lives for himself is dead to others.
  5. Self-love is the greatest of all flatterers and never emancipates.
  6. The more a man denies himself, so much the more will he receive from the Buddhas and Gods.
  7. In order that you may please, you ought to be forgetful of self.
  8. So by never preferring oneself to others you very readily find praise without envy and friends to your taste.
  9. Self-love is a golden calf.
  10. Self-love is the most forbidden sin in the Canon.
  11. The least pain in our little finger gives us more concern and uneasiness than the destruction of million of our fellow-beings.
  12. Whoever lives not somewhat for others, lives little for himself.
  13. The disease of men is this: What they require from others is great; what they lay upon themselves is light.
  14. He who keeps his food to himself, has his sin to himself also.
  15. By oneself alone is evil done; it is self-born and self-caused. Evil grinds the unwise as a diamond, a hard gem.
  16. The fools of little wit move about with the very self as their own foe doing evil deeds the fruit of which is bitter.
  17. All those virtuous terms such 35 good, righteous, noble, kind, delightful, faithful, pure, saint-like, and wise are used to praise others but are not used for becoming proud of oneself. All those vicious terms such as evil, wicked, wrong, mean, cruel, lazy, unworthy, shameless, corrupt, sinful, devilish, and stupid are used to check oneself, but are not used to blame others.
  18. It is due to selfishness that I have fallen into the endless transmigration for so long; now I should develop the Bodhi-citta to help others become as a seed to grow up in the Buddhist field until full enlightenment results.

One must always destroy one's ego with the above thoughts, with one's heart and soul, through fire and water, thick and thin.

Chapter V: How to Develop the Bodhi-citta of Samadhi?

The above three kinds of Bodhi-citta of Will, of Conduct, and of Victorious Significance, were emphasized by ancients of India and of China. They are exoteric in nature though the next two are esoteric. They have not been connected into a complete system until now. As I am the man who was born here for this great event during this very age to arrange all the important doctrines into a reasonable, complete system for the whole world, I have to introduce them to my readers without any imperfection.

The previous three kinds of Bodhi-citta lay most stress on the mentality. They have not been connected with the physical body, so the wisdom nerves have not been opened and utilized for developing the Bodhi-citta. This Bodhi-citta of Samadhi provides the technique and the function to complete the practice. The above three kinds of Bodhi-citta only succeed after three great Kalpas, but they may shorten their required period into only one life time or at the most, sixteen life times. So the earnest and quick-tempered Bodhisattva has to learn the esoteric doctrines: Samadhi Bodhi-citta first, and Kunda Bodhi-citta last.

For Samadhi Bodhi-citta I have written Booklet No.42 in which the theory of philosophy and the system and all their connections are dealt with in detail. Here I have to introduce the practical method in order to solve the problem "How?"

These methods were imparted by the great sage Nagarjuna who was an incarnation of an ancient Buddha before Gautama Buddha. He received the method from Vajrasattva in the Iron Pagoda in South India which was the third yoga called "Yogic Tantra" in the Vajrayana.

He wrote a very well-known essay titled "Developing the Bodhi-citta" in which he emphasized that anyone who practices this Bodhi-citta will succeed with his fresh body in, at most, sixteen lives. This doctrine has been practiced very earnestly in Japan where it has even been declared that one may get full enlightenment in this life time with this doctrine. They have also purposely mistaken the sixteen life times to mean the sixteen Bodhisattvas in the mandala. This is an error. In Tibet, this kind of Bodhi-Citta has not been paid reasonable attention. It is surely neglectful; I have written an essay giving some frank criticism to both Japanese and Tibetan Buddhists.

The esoteric doctrine is based upon the philosophy of causation of six elements in which the first five belong to the materiality, the last one to the mentality, i.e. in the former group are earth, water, fire, wind, and space, and in the latter category is right view. These six elements are not separately independent but perpetually harmonized with any kind of yoga and its function.

The Bodhi is not only in psychical enlightenment but also in physical light. It is known as the "will" in psychology and as the "heart" in physiology. Its conduct is a function of physiology, but its victorious significance is a function of both psychology and philosophy. The Samadhi Bodhi-citta is more psychical than physical while the Kunda Bodhi-citta is more physical than psychical. Eventually the wise practitioner must skillfully employ the identification of mentality and materiality when he is practicing Yidam even in the position of cause in Vajrayana.

This kind of Bodhi-citta of Samadhi is called "The Five Forms to Develop the Buddha-body" while the essay written by the above mentioned Guru Nagarjuna is called "The Essay of Developing the Bodhi-citta". His essay deals with the same thing as the Five Forms. From these different names one should recognize that the body and the Bodhi-citta, or the enlightened heart or mind, are the same thing. This recognition fixes the philosophy of the identification of mentality and materiality. The following five steps are translated from the Yogic Tantra ritual of Japan. The same tradition is available in the Tibetan Tripitaka, but the Tibetans do not practice the tradition as earnestly as the Japanese.

To realize the original mind, one should:

  1. first realize that the original mind is neither only in the mind nor only in the body. It penetrates inside and outside the body, is available in every body, and practically to every person. The practitioner in his meditation must think that this mind is one with him, without differentiation. His recognition of this is the final truth. He should repeat the following incantation the time:
    OM (Dharmakaya) CITTA (mind and heart) BOR RO DHI PHY DAR (realize) KAR RO ME (as I do).

He should visualize himself and all phenomenon as unified in oneness of the truth, which may be called "the original mind", but eventually is neither only mind nor only body, neither present, nor future, neither haveness nor voidness. There is nothing new to be gained, nor is anything lacking. The practitioner should keep this kind of meditation as long as he can.

  1. Developing the Bodhi-citta: As the truth is so profound, everybody can not recognize it. For this reason the practitioner must have great compassion for all sentient beings who are in the long running of transmigration and should develop the Bodhi-citta to help them.

The practitioner should visualize this Bodhi-citta as symbolized by a full moon, perfect and round and bright, eight inches in diameter, situated in his heart, and consisting of great compassion and deep wisdom.

He should repeat the following incantation one time:

    OM (Dharmakaya) BODHI-CITTA (enlightened mind or heart) BHU DAN BAR RA (develop) WA ME (as now I do).

Although the original size of the symbolic moon is eight inches in diameter, after this visualization is clear and confirmed the practitioner has to enlarge its size until it fills his hermitage, then until it fills the sky, and then until it fills the Dharmadhatu -- the universe in Buddhist cosmology. After the enlargement is finished and confirmed, one should draw it back to its original size by reversing the order given above. One should think that the blessings of all Buddhas and Bodhisattvas are gathered into the full moon.

  1. To realize the Vajra-citta: The Bodhi-citta symbol of the moon contains only the great compassion in mentality, but not the great function in materiality. Therefore, a symbol which contains the five wisdoms in its upper part and the five elements in its lower part joins these two important factors and produces many functions for saving others effectively and fruitfully. One should visualize a vajra standing on the full moon. This vajra is called "vajra-citta". It is able to serve the purpose of good vow as well as the yeoman's service or help in need. The enlargement of this vajra should be visualized in the same manner as that of the full moon, and its diminution should follow the reverse order as explained previously.

    One should repeat the following incantation one time with the visualization:

      OM (Dharmakaya) DHI SYIA THA (abide on) VAJRA (the Dharma instrument).

  2. To achieve the vajra body: Although one has visualized a vajra at the third stage, it has not become personalized. Without personalization the visualization of the vajra cannot stand in good stead. So in this stage one has to visualize oneself as a Buddha-body. When the vajra has been diminished, then one's Buddha-body increases and reduces in the sizes mentioned above.
    One should repeat the following incantation once and must keep the idea or meaning with the visualization.

  3. To integrate all parts inside and outside with the body of Buddha Vairocana or the body of the great Bodhisattva Samantabhadra. Both Buddha and the great Bodhisattva who previously was a Buddha who, in order to help the Buddha, descended into the position of a Bodhisattva, can save sentient beings effectively and fruitfully with either their inner powers or with their outer countenance, Hence, in this stage one has to visualize the Buddha or the Bodhisattva in all their thirty-two best forms and their eighty best bodily signs until every part of the holy body is integrated.

One should repeat the following incantation one time:

OM (Dharmakaya) SAMADHA (all) PADHALEN (goodness) HOM (I am).

One should visualize one's self as being the same as Vairocana when one is given initiation; and the same as Samantabhadra when one is carrying on one's Bodhi-citta of Conduct. Both are seated on the Lotus throne and wear the crown with five Buddhas as the highest blessing or ornament. All the Bodhi-citta of Will will completely succeed through such a Buddha or Bodhisattva. Hence, all conduct will be performed by such a holy being.

From the above five steps, one might recognize that the Tantric philosophical background continually penetrates all samadhis of identification of mentality and materiality In the first step the original mind is not only mind in the psychic sense but also holy matter in the philosophical truth sense. In the second step the Bodhicitta symbolized by the moon is somewhat material though its light is mental. When visualized in the heart it seemed material, but it included the great compassion of the heart which is mental. In the third step, the vajra has two parts: the upper is a symbol of wisdom which is mental, while the lower is d symbol of elements which are material. In the fourth step the body is material, but the samadhi with the body is mental. In the last step the signs or forms are material but their source and denotations are all mental. These are the special functions from the true philosophy of Tantra which are not possible in the exoteric school.

Nevertheless, though materiality has been visualized and accompanied by mentality, the actual function has not been practiced with the breath, nerves, and drops in the wisdom system of the Tantric body. Hence, the fifth Bodhi-citta of Kunda is needed.

Chapter VI: How to Develop the Bodhi-Citta of Kunda Which Contains the Red Bodhi and the White Bodhi in a Psycho-Physical System of Holy Quality?

The Buddha-body visualized in the Bodhi-citta of Samadhi course consists only of outer appearance, and the vajra's lower part of five elements has not been utilized completely. Inside the Buddha-body are his wisdom nerves, wisdom drops, and wisdom energy, or breath. Without practicing the Anuttara Yoga but only the Yogic Yoga, one could not develop the real Buddha-body -- much less its functions. The identification of mentality and materiality in the four kinds of Bodhi-citta of Samadhi has only the philosophic theory. The real five elements have not yet taken place in that samadhi. But in this fifth Bodhi-citta, the eventual union of the Red Bodhi and White Bodhi of the practitioner's body with that of his Dakini is quite a psychological matter, in fact. Readers who read over the following lines will recognize the Bodhi-citta of Kunda is quite a must.

  1. When one has the first great initiation named "Precious Vase Initiation" one practices the growing yoga or the evolutional yoga. One's body becomes completely like a Buddha's body. This seems to be a review of the fourth Bodhi-citta of Samadhi, but many such Tantric methods in evolutional yoga are not taught in the course of Samadhi Bodhi-citta. Also, the first initiation differs from the Yogic initiation, as the former is able to bring the wisdom yidam in the position of consequence into the practitioner's body. Further, the fifth step of the complete Buddha-body is a visualization only. After the first initiation of Anuttara Yoga, the body is harmonized with the real Buddha-body, and the mandala of the Buddha-body should then be visualized again. The realization of the Buddha-body should not only appear in one's own sight, but also in other's vision as well.
  2. In the Buddha-body, one should visualize the three main nerves which belong to the practice of the second initiation. It is called "Secret Initiation" and since this technical method is never included in the previous yogas, it is very secret. The breath which passes through the three nerves is the breath of Buddhahood. The five elements formed in the wisdom breath are also secret to outsiders and to the Hinayana and Mahayana. The wisdom drops directly form the red Bodhi in the lower part of the median nerve and the white Bodhi in the upper part of the median nerve. Both are the Bodhi-citta of Kunda which makes the fifth Bodhicitta an available and reasonable practice, through which it becomes possible to traverse the entire length of the whole system of Bodhi-citta.
  3. Through the practice of wisdom breath, the red Bodhi ascends and the white Bodhi descends. Both become harmonized and prevail in the whole body of Heruka or Buddha.
  4. When one gets the third great initiation one is given a Dakini by his Guru in order to practice the Vajra love. His accomplished white Bodhi-citta harmonizes with the red Bodhi-citta of his Dakini. Since the male Heruka has more white Bodhi than red Bodhi, the Heruka needs to exchange and to identify with the red Bodhi of the Dakini. As the female Dakini has more red Bodhi than white, both are benefitted through the action of Vajra love. By such practice it is said that one easily and quickly develops the power of salvation in this life time, and that the ultimate Bodhi-conduct and the success of the Bodhi-will are finally achieved.

    Padmasambhava practiced the Vajra love and attained the full enlightenment and immortality. Tsongkapa had a good idea to keep the Vinaya perfectly and to show that the Bhikshu rules clearly forbade him to use a Dakini personally and only allowed him to visualize a Dakini. Thus he could only get the full enlightenment in his Bardo state This has been written in his biography and the believers of the Gelugpa School all admit it. These two sages very clearly have set a good example for us.

    It is said that Buddha can save sentient beings without even arising from his seat. This is because a meditative seat of Vajra love which acts with white and red Bodhi passing through the secret and sacred mandala of the Lotus of the Dakini may perform every kind of Karma -- either to get rid of sins or diseases or increase wealth and health, or induce power and love, or subdue demons or devils. All can be achieved with one practice of Vajra love on this meditative seat.

  1. When one is given the fourth great initiation, one's Dharmakaya light is attested to by the Guru and is identified with either Mahamudra or Mahaperfection, Then full enlightenment for both the practitioner and his believers or sentient beings is realized and there is nothing to do again. The Bodhi-citta has arrived at its perfect completion which is called "Samyak Sambodhi".

To know this Kunda Bodhi-citta more in detail, please read my booklet How to Transform Human Body into Buddha-body.

Here I should give some discriminations between Vajra love and worldly love in order to clarify the doubt of my readers:

  1. Worldly love is in opposition to worldly intelligence; but Vajra love identifies the wisdom of sunyata and the great holy pleasure.
  2. Francis Bacon said, "It is impossible to love and to be wise," while Antoine Bret said, "The first sign of love is the last of wisdom." Ovid said, "Love draws one way and reason another." Publius Syrius also frankly confessed that "when you are in love, you are not wise; when you are wise, you are not in love."

    But Vajra love is seriously held in the Samadhi of Sunyata. Even a kiss should be identified with the meditation of sunyata. The great sage Milarepa said, "Sunyata and pleasure should always be balanced; if either one is more, falling follows immediately." Hence, it is only the wise man who is able to practice Vajra love; those who lack in sunyata meditation are forbidden to practice it. The result of Vajra love is that the one who is wise will receive more pleasure practicing it; the one whose pleasure is increased is just the one whose sunyata meditation is strongest. When the wise man achieves the Vajra love practice, he is able to carry on all his great vows in particular, and to do all the salvation Karma to save every sentient being in general.

  3. Worldly love ends in pain, but Vajra love ends in full enlightenment and enables the practitioner to stop other's pains. 

    A Spanish proverb runs, "Where there is love, there is the pain, and fools treat pain as being sweeter than pleasure." John Dryden also writes in a poem:

    "Pain of love be sweeter far,
    Than all other pleasures are!"

    It is said that Vajra love is sixteen-fold that of the love of d new couple of worldly marriage, since the practitioner of Vajra love has the accomplishment of controlling the white drops and to increase the great pleasure by identifying it with sunyata meditation. As far as the sunyata force is projected, the pleasure thereof is also projected, which is why Jean Nathan gave his mournful sigh saying, "Love is an emotion experienced by many but enjoyed by few." Much the more, the sunyata meditation is practiced by many but is realized by only the few!

  4. Worldly love is without discretion but Vajra love is with discretion at its three positions:
      1. At its causal position -- One has to choose the Dakini according to Tantric secret instructions. Each kind of Dakini has her special sign on face or body.
      2. At its course position -- Every love action should be done very carefully; within only one minute a practitioner who leaves his meditation of sunyata will fall.
      3. At its consequent position -- It is said, "If one drop of white Bodhi (enlightened semen) is discharged, the Holy wisdom Dakini will weep." Profane love is entirely buried in the ocean of desire, which is why Thomas Hardy so foolishly advocates: "Love without indiscretion is no love at all." What a pity it is!

    Much the more, the fundamental practice of the yidam in the causal position, the vinayas of the Tantra in the course position, and the realization of Tzoying (perfect yoga) in the consequent position are all very important conditions of Vajra love, and are never learned or experienced by the common person who knows only the profane love.

  5. Worldly love is based upon Haveness, but Vajra love on Voidness. John Keats said in his poem:

    "A thing of beauty is a joy forever.
    Its loveliness increases and never
    Passes into nothingness!"

    In Tantric love the beauty should be identified with the nothingness of sunyata meditation. It is taught that nine kinds of lovely attitudes and countenances of a Dakini are the signs of Dharmakaya which is the nature of sunyata. Also the sixtyfour different lovely actions should be practiced in the Samadhi of sunyata. Even a little or a subtle thought falling into the profanity of Haveness will be the practitioner's downfall.

  6. Worldly love never cares for anything other than itself, but Vajra love is one thing which includes every merit.

    Sigmund Freud said, "When a love relationship is at its height, there is no room left for any interest in the environment. A pair of lovers is sufficient to themselves. " Such a kind of love is available to animals.

    Ugo Betti said, "When you put a man and woman together, there are somethings they simply have to do. They embrace, they warm each other, all the rest is dead and empty."

    Vajra love is not centered within, as with animals, but includes all three principles of beauty, goodness, and truth. When the pleasure is identified with sunyata, a Sambhogakaya achievement of beauty is attained. When the Bodhi-citta of Kunda is identified with sunyata, a Nirmanakaya achievement of goodness is attained. When the light between the vajra and lotus shines forth, a Dharmakaya achievement of truth is attained. How can worldly love be compared with Vajra love!?

  7. Worldly human love is better than animal love, and Vajra love is much better than the human love.

    1. Havelock Ellis said, "The sexual embrace can only be compared with music and prayer." But the Vajra love is itself a profound Samadhi and the deepest compassion.
    2. James Boswell said, "If real delight and the power of propagating only to the virtuous existed, it would make the world very good." Vajra love not only benefits the virtuous, but also increases the profound Samadhi of the practitioner. It results not only in the goodness of the world, but also in the salvation of the six realms
    3. Thomas Kempis said, "Love is a great thing, a great good in every wise; it alone makes light every heavy thing and beareth evenly every uneven thing." But Vajra love may set up the whole universe in peace and every sentient being in quietude,
    4. On worldly love Miguel de Unamuno writes: "Love is the child of illusion and the parent of disillusion." But Vajra love begins with sunyata and ends with truth and never is the child of illusion.
Those hypocrites who keep lustful poison in their own minds and assume the air of serious pedant, saying that there is no such doctrine as Vajra love in Vajrayana are like the thief who steals another's bell and hides his own ears in hope that no sound of the bell has been heard by others. He is only a fool himself. In ancient times most sages kept the doctrine of Vajra love in secret; one should never say, however, that this doctrine does not exist. It is said that he who does not pay respect to Vajra love will fall into vajra hell. The only exertion we should make is keeping the vinaya of Vajra love and practicing it carefully in the Samadhi of sunyata and compassion. I have made a chart concerning Vajra love and all its vinayas and Tantra Silas which is collected in two booklets. Readers may borrow these from some libraries.

Chapter VII: Conclusion

The three important parts I shall deal with in this Chapter are, viz: 1. The connection between the five Bodhi-cittas 2. The seven steps in practicing the Bodhi-citta. 3. The stanzas of Bodhi-citta which should be repeated to develop the philosophic background and to form a motivating force to encourage the continuity of the practice.

1. The connection between the five Bodhi-cittas.

Among the five, it is the third Bodhi-citta of Victorious Significance which is the most important connecting link. For instance, if one holds these five Bodhi-cittas on his shoulder, the middle point of the fulcrum on which the balance depends when placed across the shoulder is the Bodhi-citta of Victorious Significance. As I have already said many times, the great compassion is only one part of the Bodhi-citta; the other part which has been neglected even by the ancients is the victorious signification of sunyata wisdom. He who only practices the great compassion cannot succeed in developing the Bodhi-citta. Hence, both the great compassion and the sunyata wisdom should be identified in practice. Most practitioners ignore the latter and lay more stress on the former. They should take my advice to balance themselves.

Again, the previous two Bodhi-cittas, viz: Bodhi-citta of Will and that of Conduct should be measured by the Victorious Significance. If they are identified with it then their aims are directed towards full enlightenment; if not, their goal is only to reach the heavenly states. The last two Bodhi-cittas, viz: Bodhi-citta of Samadhi and that of Kunda should also be measured by the Victorious Significance. If they are harmonized with it, their samadhi is beyond the heavens, their Vajra love is different from profanity.

One should lay most stress on this Bodhi-citta of Victorious Significance. If one feels that it is very difficult to recognize, one has to learn from a skillful Guru, repeat the Prajna Paramita Sutra many times, pray to the most wise MahaBodhisattva Manjusri for blessings, and repeat my stanza which is mentioned in the third part of this Chapter.

2. The seven steps to develop the Bodhi-citta as taught by the ancients.

Why haven't the seven steps to develop the Bodhi-citta as taught by the ancients been quoted in the booklet? Those members of the Yellow Cap sect of Tibetan Buddhism have obeyed and practiced these steps very often, as their founder Tsongkapa included these seven steps in his very well-known "Bodhi-path" essay (lam rim). I myself have also followed and practiced them for some years. The Indian sage and Bodhisattva Shantideva who began to teach these seven steps had grasped the good human nature as a motive of Bodhi-citta. Every good person loves his mother even more than his father. This love which inspires the seven steps inclines to the side of compassion, but neglects the other side of sunyata wisdom. The seven steps are as follows:

  1. To know that every man or woman and every sentient being has been one or more times one's mother owing to the numberless repetitions of transmigration.
  2. Mother is one's benefactor.
  3. One should reward the benefactor .
  4. One must have kindness (maitri) to his mother the same as to sentient beings.
  5. One must have compassion (Karuna) to one's mother and to sentient beings.
  6. One must have and strengthen a good mind toward sentient beings.
  7. One has to develop the Bodhi-citta.

As to my opinion concerning the practical order of the steps -- the fourth and fifth, kindness and compassion, succeed only after the Bodhi-citta is developed. They are the results of Bodhi-citta, but not its precursors. Again, the first five steps are all based upon great compassion, not on sunyata wisdom, and when one practices the third Bodhi-citta of Victorious Significance these steps lose their importance. On the other hand, even the great compassion of non-conditionality and that of non-entity are both far apart from the condition of one's mother and her individuality. The practice seems somewhat connected with egoism or selfishness.

Because of this, besides this mother idea, I found some more important ideas concerning the practitioner and the sentient beings during my practice of the Bodhicitta.

  1. one's mother
  2. some of the sentient beings may be the incarnations of Buddhas.
  3. All Bodhisattvas are working for every sentient being.
  4. They need salvation, even those who are not my mother.
  5. Every sentient beings suffering helps the practitioner to collect merit as he tries to save them from suffering .
  6. Every sentient being's suffering helps the practitioner to eventually know the four noble truths which are based on the truth of suffering.
  7. Some sentient beings may be in the position of Bodhisattva or Arhat,
  8. Every sentient being has his own nature of sunyata; hence, we are all in the same entity from which we derive the same body and suffer together.
  9. Those who have been saved, help the practitioner to attain the position of Nirmanakaya.
  10. Every sentient being is in the same light or the same truth or the same nature of Dharmakaya -- even if he has not yet recognized it.
  11. Without sentient beings, Buddhahood will never be attained.

The above eleven ideas if held by the practitioner will bring him success in the whole Bodhi-citta system even more quickly than the practitioner who knows only the seven steps. All these ideas are described in the following stanzas. May all my readers carefully repeat them. As it is my essential experience and practiced and collected for more than thirty years, one cannot find it elsewhere, neither in the Tripitaka, nor in modern essays.

3. The Stanzas of the Complete Bodhi-Citta System:

    Unexhausted is the Holy Karmas of all Buddhas!
    Unending is the merit or demerits of all beings!
    My Bodhi-citta goes between them, has no end too,
    This is the succession of my prayer in three things!

    Just like the spirit comes down to man for divination,
    I get the inspiration from Buddha for salvation!
    Again, like the evil ghost asked the sick man or woman
    And got something; I also receive it from Buddha's compassion!

    From my parents my body takes birth.
    My wisdom is the blessing of Buddhas!
    I could not find who is my self,
    Besides serving others, nothing else!

    Buddha has blessed me to help beings!
    I guide beings to take refuge in Him;
    Breath after breath it does not cease,
    Bodhi-citta should be like this!

    Every being is within Dharmakaya!
    No being -- no merit of Sambhogakaya!
    No being -- no mercy of Nirmanakaya!
    If there is no being, there is no kaya!

    No sentient being -- no Bodhisattva!
    No sentient being -- no Bodhi-citta!
    Many beings have been my pa and ma!
    For beings' sake all sages did their Karma!

    Some beings incarnated from Buddha,
    In his past lives as Gautama,
    He appeared in some animal Kaya,
    To save the same kind from Karma.

    To harm beings brings the three evil states!
    To help beings one attains the three Kayas!
    To help beings makes Buddha happy.
    To harm beings is to shed Buddha's tears!

    One is with beings and Buddhas,
    Three connected with this Bodhi-citta;
    One knows this will become Buddha,
    Have to practice Bodhi-citta.*

    Samadhi Bodhi-citta is like the full moon,
    Standing on which is Vajra-citta with wisdom,
    From them Holy light shines over the whole world,
    One practicing it will become Buddha soon!

    All Buddha's power and wisdom,
    Shine light forth upon my body;
    I then impart it to all beings,
    Buddhas they may become and steady!

    Most sentient being's Karma is sin;
    Become light and come to my being,
    I, then, transform it into light,
    With which I make my offering!

    * The above stanzas are the right view on Bodhi-citta as introduced in the eleven ideas this Chapter.

    Manjusri who gathered much wisdom,
    Shines light forth into my own body;
    I give his holy sword to all beings,
    May they cut off darkness so cloudy.

    May my spirit pervade all being's minds,
    May I agree with their wishes of all kinds;
    May I be enabled to make them happy,
    Metta* follows the wisdom behind!

    Kwan Yin has gathered much metta,
    It becomes light and comes into me!
    I use it to wash the pain from beings,
    May all beings from their pain be quite free!

    May I read all sentient beings' minds;
    May I change them to spiritual kinds;
    May I open their natural truth,
    Wisdom follows the metta behind!

    Vajrapani has many powers,
    They become light and come into me;
    I use it to subdue the demons,
    Let all sentient beings be very free!

    May I dig up the seed from beings so soon!
    May I remove the obstacle of demons being so long;
    May I help them to get the ten great Dowers,
    Power, metta, wisdom -- all become strong !

    * Metta means "great compassion."

    In the East I beg Buddha Aksobhya,
    Whose Pureland manifests unmovable virtues;
    Would you be so unkind as to see all beings disturbed?
    Bless them to return to their unmovable nature!

    In the South I beg Buddha Ratnasambhava,
    Whose Pureland manifests equality of mind;
    Would you be so unkind as to see beings stingy?
    Bless them to be generous and kind!

    In the West I beg Buddha Amitabha,
    Whose Pureland is full of longevity;
    Would you be able to see beings with short life?
    Bless them to live long in reality.

    In the North I beg Buddha Amoghasiddhi,
    Whose Pureland is full of best Karma;
    Would you be able to see beings lazy?
    Bless them to stabilize the perfect yoga!

    In the center I beg Buddha Vairocana,
    Whose Pureland is the nature of Dharma;
    Would you be able to see beings lose their nature?
    Kindly bless them to attain Dharmakaya!

    Just like you do best Karma in your land,
    In Saha, bless me to do the same at hand!
    And in all the other five realms as well,
    May all Karma be established with your good will!*

    * The above stanzas pertain to the fourth Bodhi-citta of Samadhi.

    Buddha's mirror wisdom comes into my mind,
    My holy light comes into the mind of beings;
    May they realize the mirror wisdom free from anger,
    In service, I use the Great Anger as offering to Him! 1

    Buddha's equality wisdom comes into my mind!
    My holy wisdom light comes to all sentient beings;
    May all sentient beings realize the wisdom free from pride!
    In holy service I use the Great Pride as offering to Him! 2

    Buddha's profound wisdom comes into my mind!
    My holy light comes into all sentient beings;
    May all beings realize deep wisdom free from love,
    In service, I use the Great Love as offering to Him! 3

    Buddha's Karma wisdom comes into my mind,
    My holy light comes to all sentient beings;
    May they realize this wisdom free from doubt,
    In service, I use the Great Doubt as offering to Him! 4

    Buddha's nature wisdom comes into my mind,
    My holy light comes to all sentient beings;
    May they realize this wisdom and be freed from stupid dullness,
    In service, I use the Great Dullness as offering to Him! 5

    1 The Great Anger as practiced with the wrathful Yidam.
    2 The Great Pride means the holy pride of Buddhahood.
    3 The Great Love is Vajra Love.
    4 The Great Doubt means the Hwa-tou of Zen.
    5 The Great Dullness means the dream yoga.

    The Yellow Dakini of earth element,
    Favours me with earth-essence in my body;
    Which enables me to get the growing force;
    This force produces all kinds of Bodhi!

    The White Dakini of water element,
    Sends water-essence into my body,
    Which enables me to get the Dharma force;
    This force then flourishes all kinds of Bodhi!

    The Red Dakini of fire element,
    Sends some fire-essence into my body,
    Which enables me to get warm devotion;
    This force may mature all kinds of Bodhi!

    The Green Dakini of wind element,
    Sends some wind-essence into my body,
    Which enables me to get the preaching force;
    This force may achieve all kinds of Bodhi!

    * Stanza 33 has been filled in by Yutang Lin in accordance with the Chinese original.

    The Blue Dakini of space element,
    Sends some space-essence into my body,
    Which enables me to get the embodiment force;
    This force makes the perfection of all Bodhi!

    My father Buddha and mother Dakinis!
    Your merciful eyes have surely seen my mind,
    And seen all other minds of all sentient beings,
    Either in the heaven or world of mankind!

    When five shortages of the heavenly ones appear,
    They will fall into low states and suffer long;
    May I bear their pain in my own body,
    May all heavenly ones Ratna Buddha become!

    All Asuras are full of hatred and doubt,
    They will fall into painful realms and suffer long;
    May I bear their pain in my own body,
    May all Asuras Amoga Buddha become!

    All human beings have done many sins;
    They will fall into worse states and suffer long;
    May I bear their pain in my own body,
    May all humans Ratna Buddha become!

    All animals have done evil and killed,
    They will fall into bad states and suffer long;
    May I bear their sins in my own body,
    May all animals Aksobhya Buddha become!

    All ghosts are in hunger and thirst,
    They have unendurable pain and suffer long;
    May I bear their pain in my own body,
    May all ghosts Amitabha Buddha become!

    The Hell-dwellers are full of different pains!
    They continuously suffer ever so long!
    May I bear their pains in my own body,
    May all Hell-dwellers Vairocana Buddha soon become!

    When anger does appear in my mind,
    Hell too appears close behind!
    May I know it is sunyata,
    The great Hevajra soon will I find!

    When Pride does appear in my mind,
    Heaven too appears at its behind!
    May I know it is sunyata,
    Guhyasamaja will soon I find!

    When lust does appear in my mind,
    Ghosts too appear close behind!
    May I know it is sunyata,
    The Mahamaya soon will I find!

    When doubt does appear in my mind,
    Asuras too are close behind!
    May I know it is sunyata,
    Yamantaka soon will I find!

    When ignorance rises in my mind,
    The wild beast is at its behind!
    May I know it is sunyata,
    Great Samvara soon will I find!*

    * The above stanzas Pertain to the fifth Bodhi-citta of Kunda

    When one feels the pain of departed love,
    May my mind's light become his right view;
    May he know the impermanence,
    Even endure well the departed Dharma new!

    When one feels the pain of foe's meeting,
    May my mind's light become his right view,
    May he know renunciation at once,
    Even the Dharma foes do become few!

    When one feels the pain of sorrows,
    May my light become his right view;
    May his sorrows be transmuted,
    Into Dharma Sunyata new!

    When one fears birth, sickness, old age, and death,
    May my mind's light become his right view;
    May he know the story of the four gates,
    Ordained into a Bhikshu new!

    When one feels its too hard to get Siddhis,
    May my mind soon become his Bodhi;
    When one feels there are many demons,
    May my light soon become his will strong!

    When one practices without progress present,
    May my mind become his patience;
    When one plans to stop his practice,
    May my mind become his continuance!

    When one suffers from calamity,
    May I be able to save him from it;
    He might take refuge after being saved,
    Thus Buddha's metta and my mind meet!

    When all one's evil Karma matures,
    May I be able to save him from it;
    He might take refuge after being saved,
    Thus Buddha's metta and my mind meet!

    When all his kinsmen and friends depart,
    May I be able to save him from it;
    He might take refuge after being saved,
    Thus Buddha's metta and my mind meet!

    When he wanders in Bardo alone,
    May I be able to save him from it;
    He might take refuge after being saved,
    Thus Buddha's metta and my mind meet!

    When he is presented at Yama's palace,
    May I be able to save him from it;
    He might take refuge after being saved,
    Thus Buddha's metta and my mind meet!

    Buddha's mind pervades in mine;
    Mine pervades in sentient beings;
    May Beings' minds pervade in mine,
    Mine pervades in Buddha's fine!

    When Buddha's mind comes into mine,
    I might get Buddha wisdom fine;
    When my mind comes into all beings,
    Carry on my great compassion,

    When beings' minds come into my mine,
    Thereupon faith is theirs to find;
    When their faith meets my compassion,
    They will surely become the Holy kind!

    I cannot see Buddha all the time,
    But Buddha can see me at anytime;
    Though not all beings believe in me,
    Yet I have compassion for all of them.

    May compassion and faith both unite soon,
    I and beings become Buddha before long!
    May pity and metta both join soon;
    Karmas of Buddhas and mine be strong! 1

    1 The above stanzas pertain to the first Bodhi-citta of Will.

    Thinking of beings pain, I have more pity,
    From which Nirmanakaya is born;
    Get ten powers, five wisdoms soon.
    All may be saved by me thereupon!

    Thinking of Buddha's wisdom, I become wise,
    Metta without condition comes likewise;
    May I have all the thirty-two influences,
    May I save all those beings not otherwise!

    When wisdom and compassion are united,
    Many upayas will happen and be right,
    Use these upayas to save sentient beings,
    Let all Buddha's wills be fulfilled outright! 2

    2 Upaya means methods or means to save others.

    My body is for the service of Buddhas,
    My mind always prays for sentient beings;
    I know Buddha's vows and mine have no end,
    If one being is left, I keep my long life in hand. 3

    3 The above stanzas pertain to the second Bodhi-citta of Conduct.

    There is neither Buddha coming into beings,
    Nor are beings coming into Buddha's realm;
    Nor does the practitioner go between,
    The pure Bodhi is without action!

    There is no mind which awaken the Bodhi,
    When it rises one should not hold to the mind;
    What a victorious Bodhi-truth!!
    May all beings abide in such a kind,

    Buddha's coming is not really coming,
    My going to beings is not really going;
    The current Dharma is turning around,
    The light of it has no end to be found!

    The vertical line in three periods,
    The horizontal line in ten directions;
    This Dharmakaya is my body,
    May I manifest all conditions! *

    * The above stanzas pertain to the third Bodhi-citta of Victorious Significance.

Some preparations should be made before the repetition of the stanzas:

  1. Arrange the images:
  2. If you are a dropout and practice in a cave, arrange a stone in place of all Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, Herukas, Dakinis, and protectors.

    If you are able to arrange all the Holy images according to the following visualization, this is very good. If you are my readers for many years and have received my Quinkaya gift, please arrange Padmasambhava at the top, the mandala of Samvara in the middle, and the 300 images at the bottom of the upper part of a west wall with the images facing east.

  3. Offer everything you have:

If you are a dropout, to offer a drop of water is enough.

  1. Toward those images, do prostrations at least three times if your age is over eighty. If you are not so old, do twenty-one prostrations or as many as accord with the number specified in your special vows, if you have made such vows.
  2. Do the following visualization:
    Sit quietly, make the breath subtle, then visualize the ten Dharmadhatus (the great universe in Buddhist cosmology) all become sunyata from which Padmasambhava suddenly appears. He transforms himself into the Adi Buddha under whom there are five Herukas (see stanzas 42-46) with five Dakinis (see stanzas 30-34). Under the five Herukas are five Buddhas, encircled by many Boddhisattvas. Among them Manjusri, Avalokitesvara, and Vajrapani are standing very clearly in front of the other holy beings who are in the front upper space before the practitioner Before him stand the demons and enemies, and on his right side is his father, on the left his mother. Behind him, in the following order are all those six realms of sentient beings, viz: hell beings, ghosts, animals, insects or beasts, men and women, Asuras, and heavenly beings. Whenever the meaning of the stanzas mention these holy beings and these sentient beings, the practitioner should visualize them accordingly.

Thanks to Readers

I have registered more than 500 readers. Among them half are still in the plastic society, half are dropout-Hippies. Below I give thanks to them with one Poem each:

    With patience you have read so long!
    From other source, have you ever found?
    When you are reading, think; thinking, act!
    Be fast, no sooner said than done.

    For Hippies who have dropped out,
    Be not lazy and live in nought;
    This step is most important,
    Save the Plastic Society a lot!

With metta by C. M. Chen

[Home][Back to main list][Back to Chenian][Go to Dr. Lin's works]