One Thought Merging into Boundlessness
One thought, purely in itself, is originally boundless; nevertheless, this is the state of Buddhas and babies, but beyond the comprehension of worldlings who are deluded by their own nets of karmic cognitions. The philosophy of Buddhism clearly expounded that "one is all, and all are one." Alas! Since high ideals are bound to have only few adherents, ordinary people would not know how to accomplish this; and when they cannot attain it they simply count it as a mysterious theory for empty talk.
In this essay I try to convey my comprehension of approaching boundlessness through cultivation of universal compassion. May it provide an unnecessary bridge between one thought and boundlessness; and perhaps it would benefit those who want to dive deeply into the ocean of Dharma to see the ultimate.
Deep down in our minds there lurks an unsettling fear—in this world of impermanence one does not know what kind of situations will erupt, especially the sudden arrival of irresistible catastrophe. And this uneasiness of mind is not confined to personal life and death, but an eternal common illness of all sentient beings. If boundlessness is comprehended at this juncture, then it is not an empty idea, but with realistic contents. Therefore, one sees that boundlessness is not limited only to Buddha's wisdom and compassion, but also encompasses fear, greed, anger, ignorance, pride and doubts of worldlings, and yet is still not confined by all these. Hence, it is said in Dharma: "The powers of Buddha are incomprehensible, and the powers of sentient beings' karmas are also incomprehensible."
The boundless original state is ultimately beyond limitations and measures. Therefore, in Dharma it is stated: "neither born nor deceased, neither dirty nor clean, neither increasing nor decreasing." It is also stated: "One should raise intentions without abiding anywhere." As to all contrived matters, it is thus stated:"They are similar to dreams, illusions, bubbles, shadows, like dewdrops and resemble lightning." What all Dharma teachings compassionately point at does not stay away from the boundless original state.
From worrying about personal safety and peril one turns the mind to the happiness and suffering of all sentient beings, and thus deeply comprehends boundlessness. Thus we see that through cultivation in compassion one may attain wisdom; this is indeed a reasonable course!
In mathematical logic the study on infinity has long since developed theories on structures of multiple layers of infinity. The comprehension on boundlessness in Dharma as presented here seems similar to the mathematical one, namely, in boundlessness there is boundless multiplicity of boundlessness.
Written in Chinese on September 19, 1995
Translated on December 26, 2013
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