Sunday, October 8, 2017

"The Heart Sutra" in Sanskrit/English (video)

Dhr. Seven (trans.), Wisdom Quarterly; Vidya Rao ( via Tenzin Wangyal

It is unusual to locate a recording sung by a native Sanskrit speaker from India. Vidya Rao's rendering is perhaps the only such recording available. This famous Buddhist chant is part of a collection recorded by Siddhartha's Intent, an organization dedicated to reviving the wisdom traditions of Ancient India.

The Heart (of Wisdom) Sutra
प्रज्ञापारमिताहृदयसूत्रम्। [संक्षिप्तमातृका] ॥ नमः सर्वज्ञाय॥ ॥ ऊँ नमो भगवत्यै आर्य-प्रज्ञापारमितायै ॥ आर्यविलोकितेश्वरो बोधिसत्वो गम्भीरां प्रज्ञापारमिता-चर्या चरमाणो व्यवलोकयति स्म-पञ्च स्कन्धाः । तांश्च स्वभाव-शून्यान् पश्यति स्म॥ इह शारिपुत्र रूपं शून्यता, शून्यतैव रूपम्। रूपान्न पृथक् शून्यता, शून्यताया न पृथग् रूपम्। यद्रूपं सा शून्यता, या शून्यता तद्रूपम् । एवमेव वेदना-संज्ञा-संस्कार-विज्ञानं ॥ इहं शारिपुत्र सर्व धर्माः शून्यता, लक्षणा, अनुत्पन्ना, अनिरुद्धा, अमला विमला, अनूना अपरिपूर्णाः। तस्माच्छारिपुत्र शून्यतायां न रूपं, न वेदना, न संज्ञा, न संस्काराः, न विज्ञानं । न चक्षुःश्रोत्र-घ्राण-जिह्वा-काय-मनांसि । न रूप-शब्द-गन्ध-रस-स्प्रष्टव्य:-धर्माः। न चक्षुर्धातुर्यावन्न मनोविज्ञान-धातु न विधा । न अविधा-क्षयो यावन्न जरा मरणं न जरा मरण-क्षयो । न दुःख-समुदय-निरोध मार्गा । न ज्ञानं न प्राप्तिर् न अप्राप्तिः ॥ तस्माच्छारिपुत्र अत्रात्तित्वाद बोधिसत्वस्य प्रज्ञापारमितामाश्रित्य विहरति अचित्तावरणः। चित्तावरण-नास्तित्वाद अत्रस्तो विपर्यासातिक्रान्तो निष्ठ-निर्वाण प्राप्तः। त्रध्व-व्यवस्थितः सर्व-बुद्धाः प्रज्ञापारमितामाश्रित्य अनुत्तरां सम्यक्-संबोधिम् अभिसंबुद्धाः ॥ तस्मात्ज्ञातव्यं प्रज्ञापारमिता महा-मन्त्रोऽमहा-विधा-मन्त्रोऽनुत्तर-मन्त्रोऽसमसम-मन्त्रः, सर्व-दुःख प्रशमनः, सत्यम् अमिथ्यत्वात् । प्रज्ञापारमितायाम् उक्तो मन्त्रः। तधथा -- 'गते गते पारगते पारसंगते बोधि स्वाहा'॥ इति प्रज्ञा पारमिता हृदय सूत्रं समाप्तम्॥ 

English: Heart Sutra (translation)
Dhr. Seven (trans.), Wisdom Quarterly (on the shoulders of Edward Conze), updated 10-8-17
Vulture's Peak, Rajgir, India, setting for Heart Sutra (Wonderlane/
Avalokiteshvara now Kwan Yin
Om namo Bhagavatyai Arya-Prajnaparamitayai.
Honor to the sublime, noble perfection of wisdom!

Arya-Avalokitesvaro bodhisattvo gambhiram prajnaparamitacaryam caramano vyavalokayati sma: panca-skandhas tams ca svabhavasunyan pasyati sma. 
[Compassionate] Avalokitesvara, the noble being-bent-on-perfect-enlightenment, was moving in the deep course of transcendent wisdom which has gone beyond. He looked down from on high and [knowing-and-seeing] beheld nothing more than these Five Aggregates. And he saw that they were empty [=impersonal, devoid of "self," without suchness or intrinsic identity].
Iha Sariputra rupam sunyata sunyataiva rupam, rupan na prithak sunyata sunyataya na prithag rupam, yad rupam sa sunyata ya sunyata tad rupam; evam eva vedana-samjna-samskara-vijnanam.
Here, O [wise] Shariputra, form is emptiness and the very emptiness is form; emptiness does not differ from form, and form does not differ from emptiness. Whatever is form, that is emptiness, and whatever is emptiness, that is form. The same is true of [the other four aggregates:] feelings [sensations], perceptions, mental formations [like volitions], and consciousness.

Iha Sariputra sarva-dharmah sunyata-laksana, anutpanna aniruddha, amala aviamala, anuna aparipurnah. 
Here, O Shariputra, all phenomena bear this universal mark of emptiness [shunyata, anatta "not-self"]. They are neither produced nor annihilated, neither defiled nor pure, neither deficient nor complete. [That is to say, there is no duality, no opposites.]

Tasmac Sariputra sunyatayam na rupam na vedana na samjna na samskarah na vijnanam. Na caksuh-srotra-ghranajihva-kaya-manam si. Na rupa-sabda-gandha-rasa-sprastavaya-dharmah. Na caksur-dhatur yavan na manovjnana-dhatuh. Na-avidya na-avidya-ksayo yavan na jara-maranam na jara-marana-ksayo. Na duhkha-samudaya-nirodha-marga. Na jnanam, na praptir, na-apraptih. 
Therefore, O Shariputra, in emptiness there is no form, feeling, perception, formation, or consciousness. There is no [contact as a consequence of three things coming together to form what is called] eye, ear, nose, tongue, body, or mind. There are no [external] forms, sounds, smells, tastes, tangibles, or objects of mind [in that they are not real and permanent but illusory and transient. There is no [sense-base consisting of] sight-organ element, and so mind-consciousness element. There is no ignorance, no cessation of ignorance, and so forth... There is no decay and death, no cessation of decay and death. There is no suffering, no origination, no cessation, no path. There is no knowing, no attaining, and no non-attaining.

Tasmac Sariputra apraptitvad bodhisattvasya prajnaparamitam asritya viharaty acittavaranah. Cittavarana-nastitvad atrastro viparyasa-atikranto nishtha-nirvana-praptah. 
Therefore, O Sariputra, it is because of his non-attainment-ness that a being-bent-on-perfect-enlightenment, through having relied on the perfection of wisdom [prajna paramita], dwells without thought-coverings. In the absence of thought-coverings one does not tremble, having overcome what can upset, and in the end one abides in nirvana [the unconditioned element, the ultimate reality that is even beyond beyond].
Tryadhva-vyavasthitah sarva-buddhah prajnaparamitam-asritya-anuttaram samyaksambodhim abhisambuddhah. 
All those who appear as perfectly-enlightened-beings in the past, present, and future fully awake to the utmost-enlightenment because they have relied on the perfection of wisdom.

Tasmaj jnatavyam: prajnaparamita maha-mantro maha-vidya-mantro nuttara-mantro samasama-mantrah, sarva-duhkha-prasamanah, satyam amithyatvat. Prajnaparamitayam ukto mantrah. Tadyatha:
Therefore, one should know the perfection of wisdom by this great mantra, the mantra of great wisdom, the utmost mantra, the unequalled mantra, the allayer of all suffering, in truth for how else could it be? By the perfection of wisdom is this mantra arrived at thus:

Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi svaha.
Gone, gone, gone beyond, gone altogether beyond,
O what an awakening, so it is!

Iti prajnaparamita-hridayam samaptam.
This completes the heart of perfect wisdom.
Editors, Wisdom Quarterly
Mahayana Buddhist sutras are not historical accounts. They are apocryphal stories based on Buddhist wisdom, later additions mixed with Brahmanism, Vedic ideas, and Hinduism.

They did not actually happen then get retold by Ananda in the way earlier sutras (found in the Nikayas) did. Although this is the case, these Sanskrit textual works of art powerfully point at truth.

Visionaries that came after the Buddha wanted to condense and epitomize the Dharma, the Buddha's Teaching (mixed with the Sanatan Dharma, the "eternal truth" as promoted by Hinduism). They focused on and expanded on subtle points of ultimate truth. And what is Buddhism's most significant and subtle point is the Doctrine of Not-Self).
They did so through manageable stories with famous figures interacting.

Shariputra, whom the Buddha named his chief male disciple "foremost in wisdom" in earlier schools (counterpart of the Buddha's chief female disciple foremost in wisdom, Khema), is here treated as dense and in need of schooling by the compassionate Avalokiteshvara/Kwan Yin.

In this, the most famous of all extra-canonical works, compassion (as embodied by Lord Avalokiteshvara, who is later transformed into the Buddhist Goddess of Compassion Guanyin or Kwan Yin) gives him Shariputra that.

Northern Asia as a whole borrowed a great deal from Buddhism and made it its own. So much so that people often confuse other Asian traditions -- such as Taoism, Shinto, Bon, animism, and so on -- with the Buddha-Dharma.

Readers may be shocked at these revelations. After all, Mahayana is the only kind of "Buddhism" most have ever heard of in various cultures: Zen, Vajrayana, Pureland, Ch'an, Mithraism, and even Messianic Christianity.
Some sutras are art
"Sleeping Peasants" 1919 by Pablo Picasso
Art? World-class artist Pablo Picasso explains: “We all know that art is not truth. Art is a lie that makes us realize the truth, at least the truth that is given to us to understand.”
The Tao
“Empty yourself of everything. Let the mind become still. The 10,000 things rise and fall while the [empty process that refers to itself as] Self watches their return. 

They grow and flourish and then return to the source. Returning to the source is stillness, which is the way of nature. The way of nature is unchanging. Knowing constancy is insight. Not knowing constancy leads to disaster. Knowing constancy, the mind is open. With an open mind, you will be openhearted. Being openhearted, you will act royally. Being royal, you will attain the divine. Being divine, you will be at one with the Tao. Being at one with the Tao is eternal. And though the body dies, the Tao will never pass away” (The Tao Te Ching).

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