First explain the meaning of the word “exercise”. Ancient warriors and swordsmen all demanded swords and swords. How to make a sword and a sword? It is made of iron. This casting process is called wrought iron and iron making. Iron can be refined into good iron, and then refined into steel, pure steel, stainless steel. In ancient times, it was the old-fashioned method of making iron, paying attention to techniques and methods. Therefore, it was necessary to choose a prescription from a famous teacher, like the Taoist alchemy, with particular emphasis on inheritance and a secret recipe. Cast irons must be specially fired, and then beaten by hand. If the technology is not good, not only will not be able to refine the steel, but will be all iron into iron slag; only skilled, can destroy the iron slag, and forged into pure steel, so the less skilled blacksmith can only play the sickle , axe or kitchen knife, but can not refine the superior sword and sword. In the same way, the training of the human heart should also have the correct method of guiding the master. Before explaining the method of refining the heart, first make an examination of the human heart.
A person’s ideas, personality, words and deeds are all dominated by the heart. As the saying goes: “The human heart is different, and it is the same.” There are no two people in the world who have exactly the same face. One hundred people have one hundred different faces, and one hundred people have one hundred different hearts. Although some people look like faces, or twins grow almost exactly the same, and can’t tell who is who, as long as their respective characters are manifested, they know who is who. The heart of the world cannot be found in any two people. If there is, then the world is too peaceful, and the world is not a world.
Society is a combination of the masses, and countless people live together. It is a big dye tank. Because each person’s thoughts and concepts are different, and in order to obtain the guarantee of survival in a fiercely competitive environment, people learn to protect themselves and fight for their rights and interests in order to avoid suffering. Therefore, each person has their own plans and ideas. Everyone becomes self-serving and self-interested. They build their relationship with each other. They are open-minded and can’t be honest. The saying goes: “People don’t do it, they are devastated. “There is nothing wrong with this, otherwise it will not survive; but there are many disharmonious phenomena between people, intrigue, disturbance, and never.” Therefore, regardless of the relationship, not only the friends are convinced, but also the tragedy of the father and son, the dreams of husband and wife, and the brothers reading the wall.
People’s hearts are different, not easy to unify, small from individuals and individuals, as large as groups and groups, races and races, countries and countries, or between humans and animals, will cause many problems, confrontation and conflict. Therefore, I once made a presentation on the topic of “Contradictions and Unity.”
The reason why these phenomena occur, in the final analysis, lies in the untrained heart, unpredictable, unpredictable, like a wild horse running, not easy to control, noisy. Therefore, we must refine our hearts in order to seek balance, harmony and unity in contradictions, confrontations and conflicts.
Method of refining the heart
The following is a method of refining the heart, divided into three stages and levels.
First, through the education or religious beliefs, exercise the heart of the heart to be upright.
Physiologically, the human heart grows on the left side of the chest, not in the middle, so the eccentricity is normal, partial and partial, partial to one family, one family, one country, one nation, all normal. The heart is not normal, and the difference is different. The trick is to distort the meaning of the heart. Fortunately, there are still many people in the world who have harmed the people. The so-called hundred steps must have grass, such as the sages, heroes, and bodhisattvas. The average person is because of mutual exchanges, mutual needs, mutual profit, and living together, called mutual assistance and reciprocity, but it is still a prerequisite for profit. For example, when the United States has a surplus of agricultural products, the government subsidizes farmers and the agricultural land is ridiculous. Knowing that there are hundreds of thousands of people who die in Asia and Africa due to lack of nutrition every year. In order to protect the living standards of the American people, they have to turn a blind eye to seeing you die. So the Americans do anything, the first thing to emphasize is to meet the Americans. Interest, in fact, the United States is already the most generous country in the world for other backward regions.
Those who are jealous, who are guilty of suspicion, use unfair means to obtain unreasonable interests, such as deliberate misbehavior, vicious bankruptcy, sea-crossing, robbery, extortion, cleverness, plundering, etc., they may get a moment of luck, the future How can it be difficult to predict that even if the world can escape legal sanctions, their descendants and their future generations will never have a good ending.
Dharma uses the theory of causality to educate all beings, good and good, and bad and bad. Therefore, those who believe in Dharma know the cause and effect, do not dare to do things that violate their conscience, and instead do things that are good for people. Therefore, the education of Buddhism can turn people from a heart to a heart. The general religion can reach this level. This is the most basic requirement in Buddhism.
Second, use the method of practice to exercise distraction and chaos into a unified heart.
The second level of the method of refining the heart is mainly the practice of meditation. The first level relies on the method of abstinence. The negative position of the ring is not to do all evil. The positive position of the ring is to do everything. To turn chaotic and scattered reverie into a centralized unity, it is necessary to use certain power.
The ambiguous heart and the scattered heart are the same thing, but the different natures, scattered meaning means that the mind is not concentrated, the thoughts are sloppy, and there is no certain direction and goal. The meaning of delusion is to think without thinking, not to think about it, it may be loose, or it may be organized. For example, some people like to smoke, drink, gamble, know that these are bad habits, but do not smoke, drink, or gamble, he is sad, itchy, especially when you are addicted, it is not easy for him to not do it. I don’t want to, but it’s not easy.
Among the disciples who follow my practice, some often tell me that he often does something that he doesn’t have to think about and shouldn’t think about. He feels very guilty. Some people say that whenever he meditates and chanting, he has a dream, and he is a criminal. He feels very sad. I told them: “Don’t think so. If you can’t think about it, your practice has been successful. It is because at the beginning of the heart, you can’t concentrate on meditation and concentrate on meditating.” In fact, there will be bad in ordinary life. The thoughts appeared, but the mind was too mixed and I didn’t notice it. When meditating, chanting Buddha, worshipping Buddha, and holding a curse, the heart is more focused, the mind is clearer, and when bad thoughts appear, it is easy to be noticed. It is not that you deliberately want to think about it, but the potential consciousness. When it is not suppressed, it suddenly floats up.
How to deal with distraction and delusion? That is to use the method of practice. There are many ways to practice, and in the way of meditation, the results are more significant and practical. There are many ways to meditation, and the starting method we teach is the concept of counting. The concept of counting is to use the method of breathing, the iron of the heart, the moment to tie the heart to the method, the method and the heart, to be like the relationship between the monkey and the refining, the method does not transfer, just like the monkey’s refining is tied to the pile. On the top, so that the monkey does not leave the pile at all times, when you think about the outer edge, immediately pull back to the method, always tie your heart to the method, and immediately leave the method, immediately alert; and the number of views is the most easy for us. Be alert and find out if you have left the method.
The method can make the scattered imaginary heart disappear. This is not to use methods to destroy the delusion, or to use the military and police force to eliminate the bandits. The method is to use the method, in order to use the method, not to Eliminate delusions and use methods, and finally delusions will naturally disappear.
At this level of practice, the experience you may have experienced is failure again and again, not success; it is to discover more delusions, not the concentration and unity of the heart, you must be patient and persevering.
Third, use the Zen method to smash the concentrated and unified heart.
The refining of the heart to the second level is completed, and the heart can be concentrated and unified. If the mind can concentrate, it can reduce the time of snoring; focus on the mind, clear mind, daily life, and cope. Do things well, improve efficiency, not lead to no clue, panic upside down, slap in the face, the average person to this extent, has gained a lot of benefits, further concentrated to achieve the degree of unity, is to find that “the world is with me, The truth that all things are one with me, the sages of the world can become sages, and there must be an experience like this.
However, the center and the unity are still the stage of “I”: the ability to concentrate is the affirmation of “small self”; the ability to unite is the implementation of “big self”. When you are experiencing the unification of the big one, there will be no distraction; however, when you return to the state of mind from the state of unity, you will have strong self-confidence. However, the stronger the self-confidence, the heavier I am. His “I” is very strong. He believes that what he says, sees, thinks, and is absolutely correct. He is confident that he has unlimited compassion, compassion, and mission. A person with a sense of sense and authority. Unfortunately, many of the conflicts, conflicts, wars, and persecutions between religions and religions are self-confidence, because strong self-confidence is arrogance and extremes.
From the standpoint of Dharma, although there must be self-confidence, there must be no self. Without me, I don’t think that I am the whole person. I don’t think that I have the relief of unlimited power. The so-called relief is the sentient beings of all beings. Therefore, Bodhisattva is doing all the beings, but there is no one who is born, this is no self.
How can I achieve the goal of “no self”? Only practice through Zen. The method of meditation is to smash the heart that has been concentrated and unified; it is to destroy and dissipate the sturdy one, and when “I” does not exist, it is a great relief and a great implementation. If this is the purpose, it is to practice with the Zen method of kicking and turning.
(From “The Life of Zen”)