A Buddhist Journal

August 18, 2006

Essential Dharma for Zen Practice – Heart Sutra 心經

                Bodhasattva Avalokitesvara

Heart Sutra is very essential for a Buddhist Practitioner. It is my daily
routine in chanting this sutra prior to pricticing meditation for many years.
It is very useful and powerful Dharma teaching  in upholding a right view and
awareness in contemplation.

Haert sutra in chinese
       Heart Sutra in Chinese Version

The Heart of Prajna Paramita Sutra

Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara,
while deeply immersed in Prajna Paramita,
clearly perceived the empty nature of the five skandhas,
and transcended all suffering.
Sariputra! Form is not different from emptiness,
emptiness is not different from form.
Form is emptiness, emptiness is form.
So it is with feeling, conception, volition, and consciousness.
Sariputra! All dharmas are empty in character;
neither arising nor ceasing,
neither impure nor pure,
neither increasing nor decreasing.
Therefore, in emptiness, there is no form;
there is no feeling, conception, volition, or consciousness;
no eye, ear, nose, tongue, body, or mind;
no form, sound, smell, taste, touch, or dharmas;
no realm of vision, and so forth, up to no realm of mind-consciousness;
no ignorance or ending of ignorance, and so forth,
up to no aging and death or ending of aging and death.
There is no suffering, no cause, no extinction, no path.
There is no wisdom and no attainment.
There is nothing to be attained.
By way of Prajna Paramita,
the bodhisattva’s mind is free from hindrances.
With no hindrances, there is no fear;
freed from all distortion and delusion,
ultimate nirvana is reached.
By way of Prajna Paramita,
Buddhas of the past, present, and future,
attain anuttara-samyak-sambodhi.
Therefore, Prajna Paramita
is the great powerful mantra,
the great enlightening mantra,
the supreme and peerless mantra.
It can remove all suffering.
This is the truth beyond all doubt.
And the Prajna Paramita mantra is spoken thus:

    Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi svaha

This English version of Heart Sutra is used by:
Buddha Gate Monastery:


Mountain Life in Early Fall – 早秋山居

Mountain hut in thailand
” />    ——- Mountain Huts in Thailand ——-
Photo Courtesy by a Great Photographer ZiFeng/Flickr.

溫庭筠 (晚唐詩人)



Mountain Life in Early Fall

Living close to the mountain will find the autumn coldness early.

A sunny weather but is with humid rooms.

Look out the sun and decaying trees through windows.

Pond is filled full with water without noise.

Fruits fall when you see monkey passing by.

Cracked sounds from dried leaf remind you the walking deer.

Playing a plucked instrument in the serene moment,

Emptiness in dark night is accompanied with silent water flow,
my mind stays in tranquility.

—-Zen Poem by Wen Tin-Yun (812–867)—–

Zen poem helps to examine our practice:

A Zen poem normally describes the status of awakened mind,
the insight and the phenomena of meditation through a daily life.
The life of a Zen practitioner during his waking hours, no matter
he is standing or walking, sitting or lying down, he practices the
way with full-mindfulness and with gratitude.

Reflection from this poem:

The author uses his bodily senses of feeling, visual and hearing
to observe the mountain life with seasonal weather change, sunny,
temperature, humidity.

He also observed from fruit falling, trees decaying, dry leaves
cracked, monkey, deer, waters, pond, etc. to describe where the
quiet mountain he lives and what happens around him. He observed
from sunny daylight with noises to quiet night. He observes from
external materialized world to his inner purified world, from existence
to emptiness.

The echoes of music instrument played in the peaceful dark night
sky will help to eliminate the burdens of daytime works. The serenity
with peace in the mountain demonstrates the law of nature. The author
melts himself into the nature and practices to purify his mind with less
desires, clinging and delusions.


Not holding to the fixed views,
Endowed with insight,
Freed from sense appetites,

One who achieves the way
will be freed from the duality of Birth and Death.

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