Buddha Kingdom, Shala World, Honey Ripple Temple
With the current Feast of All Souls, the Buddha Kingdom’s myriad Buddhist sects would preach dharma, with countless monasteries and pagodas all full of pious Buddhist disciples. The burning incense could be said to be unending. In the Shala World, only this Honey Ripple Temple’s gates were closed shut. The main courtyard was dusty, quite desolate, like its own individual world compared to the other Feast of All Souls temples.
On this day, two monks hastily entered Honey Ripple Temple. They were seemingly already accustomed to those sounds of sex. If Su Xing was present, he would have recognized these two monks as the ones that used a Soul Technique to bewitch the woman.
A shiny bald-headed monk saw the two, and he called them forth with disdain.
“Joyous Jia, Joyous Qing,1 what about the person you were to bring?”
“Elder Monk Wonderful Place”2
When Joyous Jia and Joyous Qing saw him, they immediately were respectful.
Elder Monk Wonderful Place had a dissatisfied expression: “You two went out for so long, why have you come back empty-handed? Could it be you two have forgotten that Senior Monk required the selection of a new dual cultivation cauldron?” It turned out this Honey Ripple Temple was of the Happy Together Courtyard. Because the Chan specialized in happiness did not open its doors for outsiders, it was during this Feast of All Souls that the Happy Together Courtyard’s Senior Monk Extreme Happiness specially ordered the disciples to seek top-notch cultivating cauldrons from the Azure Dragon Territory to comprehend Happiness Chan.
“Great Elder Monk, this cannot be blamed on us. This is all because of the meddling of those Dafan Temple’s monks.” Joyous Jia compliantly narrated what had happened.
Joyous Qing correspondingly showed a resentful expression: “The Dafan Temple is sincere, honestly not placing Senior Monk in their eyes.”
Elder Monk Wonderful Place’s expression turned severe. He rebuked them in a low voice: “You know how the other sects in the Mundane Pure Land fear our Happy Together Courtyard. How could you use such methods to make those bald asses of the Dafan Temple compromise you. What face does Senior Monk have then.”
Joyous Jia and Joyous Qing’s expressions were fearful as they confessed guilt over and over.
“Go retrieve some other cauldrons. If Senior Monk takes his anger out, you and I will suffer the consequences.” Elder Monk Wonderful Place warned.
“Great Elder Monk, back to the topic at hand, the ‘Great Sect Earth Mysterious Extreme Happiness Eternal Life Record’3 is already at the Mahayana stage. Junior Brothers must not be sloppy when seeking cauldrons.”
“This is natural.”
Joyous Jia and Joyous Qing glanced at each other, and their eyes twinkled. “Junior Brother already has candidates for cauldrons, but the opponent is too powerful. We do not dare be direct. This time was also because of them that we discarded the cauldron.”
“What do you mean?” Elder Monk Wonderful Place’s tone sunk.
Joyous Qing explained that Su Xing brought numerous beauties, embellishing his story as he narrated.
“That man brought seven women to my Buddha Kingdom?” Elder Monk Wonderful Place felt incredulous listening.
“Exactly, and in Junior Brother’s eyes, each of those women are as beautiful as fairies, remarkably gorgeous, the cream of the crop. Junior Brother also has never seen so many women at one man’s side. Even that Emperor Liang does not compare. In Junior Brother’s eyes, if these women are given to Senior Monk as cultivation cauldrons, he definitely can make twice the work with half the effort, with natural success.”
Joyous Jia promptly fanned the flames.
“Great Elder Monk’s cultivation is at Supercluster Middle Stage. Hindering him is more than enough, but several of those beauties are not too easy to attract.” Joyous Qing promptly agreed.
Elder Monk Wonderful Place was not an idiot. Listening to them speak, he somewhat understood, “You mean that man is a Star Master? One of those women is a Star General?”
“About so, more or less.”
“Since she is a Fiend Star, why bother provoking them?” Elder Monk Wonderful Place coldly asked.
“Great Elder Monk, we must. It was not us who provoked him, it was they who provoked us.” Joyous Jia smiled: “That man meddled with the sect’s affairs, he was in the wrong first. What we do is a matter of right. Great Elder Monk, if we can send the Star Maiden to Senior Monk to use as a cauldron, this is boundlessly beneficial. Senior Monk would be the number one in Buddha Kingdom. Hm, hm, who would dare underestimate our Happy Together Courtyard in the future.”
“Fiend Stars are not easy to provoke. If we encounter Wu Song or Lin Chong, how are we not twisting our fates.” Elder Immortal Wonderful Place was not enticed by those apparently beautiful prospects, still considering the gains and losses.
Compared to the giddiness of the two, those two ignorant and incompetent disciples that used bewitching magic to take a woman, he clearly was even more calm.
“Great Elder Monk is thinking too much. How can legendary Star Generals like Wu Song or Lin CHong follow that man. Junior Brother feels that man most likely has a subpar Earthly Star Martial General.” Joyous Jia snorted disdainfully.
“How can you be so sure?”
“Elder Monk know that man has many beauties at his side, he is definitely bluffing. Furthermore, he is most probably a pompous hedonistic heir that has come to Buddha Kingdom to show off.”
“Snatching any number of those sweet beauties to present to Senior Monk is an achievement. What else does Elder Monk have to worry about. They are in the light, and we in the dark. Who would know if something happens. If there is blame, it is his for being too provocative. Heh, heh.”
“En.” Elder Monk Wonderful Place muttered, somewhat convinced. Any way he looked, there apparently did not seem to be any disadvantages. How could he have known that Liangshan Continent had turned out a freak like Su Xing. Not only did he have Lin Chong and Wu Song, he even had several famous Star Generals accompanying him. How was he any normal person.
“How about this. Everything must not be rushed. First observe them for any information. Then, we make a decision.” Elder Monk Wonderful Place made his determination.
Currently, Senior Monk’s comprehension of Happiness Chan had reached the critical point. If they truly used a Star General as a cauldron, that indeed was unprecedented. For this reason, may be there was the chance to comprehend the Meditative Mind Golden Lotus. Since this was the Buddha Kingdom’s territory, Elder Monk Wonderful Place felt this danger was worth facing.
While Great Elder Monk Wonderful Place of the Happy Together Courtyard made the sect’s monks carry out observations, Su Xing at this time was currently in the Shala Word’s Shala Tree Treasure Hall listening to a senior monk propagate dharma.
The Shala Treasure Hall was the largest Buddhist hall in Shala World. At the same time, it contained several hundred thousand people comfortably. There were high platforms above, with the Shala World’s most famous Chan Masters sitting upon those. Calmly speaking the dharma, the several hundred thousand people quietly sat around, and Su Xing was one among them.
For the sake of letting them become worry-free as soon as possible, Su Xing listened to the dharma with rapt attention, not leaving out a single word. If it was before, even when he was a child, he could not sit still listening to his elders speak about Buddhism. However, although he concentrated very hard, that dharma was cryptic beyond compare. Su Xing was still a little sleepy.
He only heard the Chan Master say thus.
“All of you Good Knowing Advisors should purify your minds and listen to my explanation of the Dharma. If you wish to realize all knowledge, you must understand the Samadhi of One Mark. If you do not dwell in marks anywhere and do not give rise to hate or love, do not grasp or reject, and do not calculate advantage or disadvantage, production and destruction while in the midst of marks, but instead remain tranquil, calm, and yielding, then you will have achieved the ‘Samadhi of One Mark.’ In all places, whether walking, standing, sitting, or lying down, to maintain a straight and uniform mind, to attain the unmoving Bodhimanda and the true realization of the Pure Land. That is called the ‘Samadhi of One Conduct.’”4
“One who perfects the two Samadhis is like earth in which seeds are planted; buried in the ground, they are nourished and grow, ripening and bearing fruit; the One Mark and One Conduct are just like that. I now speak the Dharma which is like the falling of the timely rain, moistening the great earth. Your Buddha-nature is like the seeds which, receiving moisture, will sprout and grow. Those who receive my teaching will surely obtain Bodhi; and those who practice my conduct will certainly certify to the wonderful fruit. Listen to my verse: ‘The mind-ground contains every seed, under the universal rain they all sprout, flower and feeling – sudden enlightenment, the Bodhi-fruit accomplishes itself.’”5
If these words were separated, Su Xing could recognize each one, but combined together, it was somewhat amidst the cloud and mist. He completely had a “listening to obscure writing” sort of feeling.
“Do you wrinkle your brow because you are dissatisfied with the propagation of the dharma? How can you comprehend the Buddhist mind like this.”
Wu Siyou’s serene voice appeared.
Su Xing cast a sidelong glance, looking at the woman sitting next to him in meditation. Then, he looked at Yan Yizhen and the Gongsun Huang to the side. The three girls clearly were very invested, showing states of pensiveness. Hearing the dharma sermon this time really was too boring. As far as the Star Generals were concerned, this completely lacked meaning. Wu Xinjie and the rest also did not want to waste time on this. Other than the Harm Star Pilgrim that was acquainted with Buddhism, Skilful Star Yan Yizhen and Gongsun Huang also accompanied Su Xing to listen to this dharma. The others took this time to do other things. Lin Yingmei then assumed the role of protector.
“Wifey, translate just what the hell this great master is saying…” Su Xing whispered.
Wu Siyou had a powerless “you did not understand a thing, as expected” feeling.
“The words this Buddhist sect uses are too strange, I can’t help it if I don’t understand. Wifey, explain.” Su Xing could not help it.
Wu Siyou was stern. “Lord Husband, please listen carefully. This will be beneficial for Lord Husband’s understanding of the Buddhist mind.”
Su Xing nodded.
“What the Great Master is saying is that if you wish to realize all knowledge, you must understand the Samadhi of One Mark and the Samadhi of One Conduct. If you can be with everything and not be attached to any marks, to be with marks and not have hate or love, fondness or abandonment, to not consider the pros and cons of things, and remain calm, tranquil and accommodating, then this is called the Samadhi of One Mark. No matter where you are, moving, standing, sitting or laying, maintain a direct mind about everything, good or bad. There is no need to practice within the path. Thus, you can genuinely attain the Pure Land. This is called the Samadhi of One Conduct.”
Pausing, she saw that Su Xing apparently comprehended it. The corner of Wu Siyou’s lips stifled a smile, and then she said: “If everyone possesses the two types of Samadhi, that is just like those seeds, retained, hidden and nurtured over a long period, only then reaping its fruit. The Samadhi of One Mark and Samadhi of One Conduct are just like this…”
“It really is very mysterious…and the rest?” Su Xing saw that Wu Siyou had stopped, so he asked.
“As for the rest, the Chan Master says his Dharma is just like a timely rain, sprinkling and wetting all over the earth. Our Buddha natures are just like those seeds, and encountering the moisture of this rain will germinate the seeds without exception. Those that accept these teachings definitely will attain enlightenment, and those that follow them will definitely obtain the fruits of their labors.”
Su Xing was pensive. He praised: “I actually understood it when Wifey said it.”
“Can Lord Husband’s comprehension just now be called true understanding.” Wu Siyou slightly frowned.
“If it were up to me, Wifey, what you said is more awesome than this Chan Master. How about we discuss dharma tonight?” Su Xing chuckled.
Wu Siyou was slightly red. She resentfully glared at Su Xing, as if she was saying, “You were romantic enough last night, do you still have designs on Your Servant?”
“Heaven and Earth are but reflections. What I was talking about is a very pure discussion.” Su Xing’s expression as he spoke very much lacked persuasiveness.
“Two Benefactors, the Shala Treasure Hall is publicly for people with the mind for Dharma. If you wish to flirt, then we must ask you do so elsewhere.”
Suddenly, the expression of the Chan Master above them sunk, and he unhappily issued them notice to leave.
The treasure hall went silent. Millions of gazes successively stared at Su Xing, like drawn swords and daggers.
Wu Siyou was startled, and just as she was about to rise.
Su Xing pulled her back. He stood, faced the millions of gazes, and as if he did not see them he faintly smiled: “For Great Master to speak words so ill, it honestly violates enlightenment. It seems this dharma cannot be listened to.”
“Benefactor, there is no need to speak nonsense. Just now, Benefactor clearly borrowed confusion with Old Monk’s words to take advantage of the Female Benefactor next to you.” The Chan Master was expressionless, treating Su Xing as a pervert that took advantage of dharma to assault a beauty.
“Your Servant merely feels Great Master’s words can be a bit simpler.” Su Xing played things down.
Once these words were uttered, they immediately made the entire hall stare furiously at him. This layman unexpectedly held the Great Master’s speech in contempt.
The Chan Master was resentful. In any case, he was a famous Chan Master in the Shala World. He could be tranquil over this. He calmly smiled and asked: “It seems that Benefactor has the same feelings towards Old Monk’s words. Old Monk shall respectfully listen to Benefactor’s learning.”
What was the point of having a layman like Su Xing speak with the Chan Master about Dharma. He completely wanted to humiliate Su Xing, and Wu Siyou’s heart had resentment.
The others showed expressions of joy at his misfortune.
They seemed to want to see Su Xing’s dumbstruck expression of embarrassment. Wu Siyou inwardly blamed Su Xing for his blabbing, and just as she wanted to help this Lord Husband out of this predicament, she suddenly found that not only did Su Xing’s face not have any embarrassment, rather, he even had a somewhat calm ease.
“Then Your Servant shall be so bold as to offer disgrace in front of Great Master.” Su Xing laughed and said: “In my perspective, these dharmas are nondual, the mind so as well. The Dao is pure, and there are no forms that exist. We must not contemplate purity. Regard the mind as empty, for this mind is itself pure. Do not accept or reject anything. With individual effort, go forth following karma.”6
Su Xing finished speaking and put his hands together in prayer.
Wu Siyou was unable to conceal her shock.
At what time did this man have such a meditative mind?
The main hall was absolutely silent immediately, an expression of not daring to utter a word.
The Chan Master that was resentful of Su Xing also was stupefied, unable to believe these words unexpectedly came from the mouth of a layman.
PS: The Buddha Kingdom has more or less been planned out. However, applying the plot details completely lacks inspiration. Could it be this is the legendary bottleneck…(cheer up now, there is still two to four days’ time.)
- 歡嘉, 歡慶, I am pretty sure that 歡 is being used as a title here. ↩
- 妙境長老 ↩
- 大宗地玄極樂永生經 ↩
- 諸位善知識，汝等各各淨心，聽吾說法。若欲成就種智，須達一相三昧，若於一切處而不住相，於彼相中不生憎愛亦無取捨，不念利益成壞等事，安閒恬靜，虛融澹泊，此名“一相三昧”，若於一切處行住坐臥，純一直心不動道場，真成淨土，此名“一行三昧”。 I take no credit for this translation. I used the translation by the Buddhist Text Translation Society, p. 395. https://www.thezensite.com/ZenTeachings/Translations/PlatformSutra_DharmaJewel.pdf ↩
- 若人具二三昧：如地有種，含藏長養成熟其實；一相一行亦復如是。我今說法，猶如時雨，普潤大地；汝等佛性，譬諸種子，遇茲沾洽，悉皆發生。承吾旨者，決獲菩提；依吾行者，定證妙果。聽吾偈曰：“心地含諸種，普雨悉皆萌；頓悟華情已，菩提果自成。p. 397-398 ↩
- 其法無二，其心亦然。其道清淨，亦無諸相。吾等慎勿觀靜，及空其心。此心本淨，無可取捨，各自努力，隨緣好去便是. Portions of this were adapted from Yongming Yanshou’s Conception of Chan in the Zongjing Lu, by Albert Welter. No credit is taken on my part for this translation. ↩