Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

User avatar
seeker242
Posts: 1335
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by seeker242 » Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:22 am

Malcolm wrote:
seeker242 wrote:
Precepts do come from taking vows but I think it's obvious that the surangama and Hsuan Hua are speaking to the benefit of keeping these vows and the drawbacks of breaking them, regardless if one has formally taken them or not.
One cannot maintain a vow one has not taken, nor can one break it.
That's not relevant. For example, if someone has not taken a vow to abstain from killing, there is still a negative effect from killing regardless. The negative effect it has, is the reason why it's a precept to begin with.
The other he mentions is the effect it has on the mind. He does not mention all of the reasons in this short talk.
No such effects are mentioned in any sūtra what so ever.
Chan Master Sheng Yen just doesn't know what he is talking about? Sorry, I can't believe that. It's highly unlikely that he doesn't know what he is taking about. He's a well regarded monastic Chan master. He's also a scholar with a Ph.D in Buddhist literature. He knows what he's talking about when it comes to the sutras.
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 28559
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Malcolm » Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:30 am

seeker242 wrote:
That's not relevant. For example, if someone has not taken a vow to abstain from killing, there is still a negative effect from killing regardless. The negative effect it has, is the reason why it's a precept to begin with.
Of course it is relevant. Of the five lay vows, only the vow against intoxication is prohibition rather than a natural non-virtue like killing, taking what is not given, lying and sexual misconduct. Likewise, the monastic vow against consuming garlic is a vow of prohibition, as are most of them, and so therefore, no non-virtue is accrued when they are engaged in by novices and lay people.

On the other hand, there is no vow forbidding malice, envy and ignorance, the three mental natural non-virtues because hinayāna precepts apply only to physical and verbal actions, nevertheless, indulging in these three results in negative karma and ripening. Likewise, harsh speech, gossip and calumny are natural non-virtues, but there is in fact no vows against them, because the Buddha judged it would be too hard not to break these and because there is natural negative consequences.

Most of the monastic vows therefore are vows of prohibition only and are not natural non-virtues. Thus there are no negative consequences if lay people do not follow precepts meant for the ordained. Otherwise, for example, sleeping with your wife would become a downfall.
Chan Master Sheng Yen just doesn't know what he is talking about? Sorry, I can't believe that. It's highly unlikely that he doesn't know what he is taking about. He's a well regarded monastic Chan master. He's also a scholar with a Ph.D in Buddhist literature. He knows what he's talking about when it comes to the sutras.
I am sorry, but there is no mention of negative mental effects of garlic in any authentic Mahāyāna sutra. There is a chapter of the Chinese Surangama Samadhi sūtra in the Tibetan canon, chapter ten, where it says that if one eats garlic, it increases desire, if one eats it raw, it increases hatred, but that is all.

I am not questioning Master Sheng Yen's knowledge of the Chinese canon. But I don't think there is any reason to accept what the Chinese Surangama Samadhi has to say at all. I don't consider it an authentic Mahāyāna sūtra. Just because a chapter of it is included in the Tibetan canon does not guarantee its authenticity. There are several texts included in the sutra and dharani section of the Tibetan canon whose authenticity is disputed. This is one of those texts.

M
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

User avatar
Admin_PC
Site Admin
Posts: 4493
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:17 pm
Location: Texas, USA

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Admin_PC » Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:47 am

Malcolm wrote:I am sorry, but there is no mention of negative mental effects of garlic in any authentic Mahāyāna sutra. There is a chapter of the Chinese Surangama Samadhi sūtra in the Tibetan canon, chapter ten, where it says that if one eats garlic, it increases desire, if one eats it raw, it increases hatred, but that is all.

I am not questioning Master Sheng Yen's knowledge of the Chinese canon. But I don't think there is any reason to accept what the Chinese Surangama Samadhi has to say at all. I don't consider it an authentic Mahāyāna sūtra. Just because a chapter of it is included in the Tibetan canon does not guarantee its authenticity. There are several texts included in the sutra and dharani section of the Tibetan canon whose authenticity is disputed. This is one of those texts.
Not to be a pest, but AFAIK, the Śūraṅgama Samādhi Sūtra is a separate text from the Śūraṅgama Sūtra. The first is considered an Indian sutra according to Lamotte, the later was the one that caused controversy even as far back as the 8th century, with the Emperor of Japan. The former doesn't seem to involve this topic, as I can't find anything related to "onion", "garlic", "pungent", or even "vegetable" in the sutra.
月影の いたらぬ里は なけれども 眺むる人の 心にぞすむ
法然上人

Norwegian
Posts: 1458
Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 7:36 pm

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Norwegian » Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:49 am

Authorship

The first catalogue giving an account of the Śūraṅgama Sūtra was Zhi-sheng (Chinese: 智昇), a monk of the Tang Dynasty. Zhi-sheng said this book was brought back from Guangxi to Luoyang during the Kaiyuan era. He gave two different accounts in two different books, which were published in 730 CE.

1. According to the first account, in his book Buddhist Texts Catalogue of Kaiyuan Era (Chinese: 開元釋教錄), the Śūraṅgama Sūtra was translated about in 713 CE by a monk Huai-Di (Chinese: 懷迪) with an unnamed Indian monk.

2. According to the second account, in his later book The Story About This Translation of Buddhist Scriptures Mural (續古今譯經圖記), the Śūraṅgama Sūtra was translated in May 705 CE by Śramaṇa Pāramiti from Central India, who came to China and brought the text to the province of Guangzhou. The text was then polished and edited by Empress Wu Zetian's former minister, court regulator, and state censor Fang Yong (Chinese: 房融) of Qingho. The translation was reviewed by Śramaṇa Meghaśikha from Oḍḍiyāna, and certified by Śramaṇa Huai-di (Chinese: 懷迪) of Nanlou Monastery (南樓寺) on Mount Luofu (羅浮山).

Zhi-sheng didn't explain why he wrote two different records, but at the end of The story about this translation of Buddhist scriptures mural (續古今譯經圖記) he left a small comment, recommending readers the record at Buddist Book catalogue of Kaiyuan era is better than The story about this translation of Buddhist scriptures mural (續古今譯經圖記).

Dispute about this text arose in 8th century in Japan, so Emperor Kōnin sent a monk to China, asking whether this book was a forgery or not. His Chinese teacher told him that this was forged by Fang Yong. Zhu Xi, a 12th-century Neo-confucian who was opposed to Buddhism, believed that it was created during the Tang Dynasty in China, and did not come from India.

and:

"in-depth meaning of Three Treatise school said, "(Emperor Kōnin) sent Buddhist monks De-Qing (德清)and other to Dang Dynasty to find the answer. The Teacher of De-Qing at Dang dynasty, Buddhist Fa-Siang (Chinese: 法詳), told him, This Shurangama Sutra is forged by Fang Yong, not a real Buddhavacana. But Zhi-sheng know nothing about it, so he make a mistake to list this book at Buddhist texts catalogue." from 玄睿《大乘三論大義鈔》:「遣德清法師等於唐檢之。德清法師承大唐法詳居士:《大佛頂經》是房融偽造,非真佛經也。智昇未詳,謬編正錄。」"

and:

In China during the early modern era, the reformist Liang Qichao claimed that the sutra is apocryphal, writing, "The real Buddhist scriptures would not say things like Surangama Sutra, so we know the Surangama Sutra is apocryphal. In the same era, Lü Cheng (Chinese: 呂澂) wrote an essay to claim that the book is apocryphal, named "One hundred reasons about why Shurangama Sutra is apocryphal" (Chinese: 楞嚴百偽).

User avatar
seeker242
Posts: 1335
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by seeker242 » Fri Mar 20, 2015 3:24 am

Malcolm wrote: I don't consider it an authentic Mahāyāna sūtra.
I think it's obvious that Sheng Yen and Hsuan Hua considered it to be an authentic sutra. They aren't the only ones. But yes, if you dismiss the sutra that says these things, then you can claim no sutra says them. But, that's just not accurate or reasonable to say.
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!

User avatar
BrianG
Posts: 441
Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2012 6:59 pm

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by BrianG » Fri Mar 20, 2015 8:45 am

Malcolm wrote: I don't consider it an authentic Mahāyāna sūtra.
Well that's interesting. Isn't it the content of a teaching that is important? I think that there's plenty in that sutra that is extremely relevant and profound.
Telepaths - I like to kill them

Simon E.
Posts: 5636
Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Simon E. » Fri Mar 20, 2015 9:12 am

seeker242 wrote:
Malcolm wrote: I don't consider it an authentic Mahāyāna sūtra.
I think it's obvious that Sheng Yen and Hsuan Hua considered it to be an authentic sutra. They aren't the only ones. But yes, if you dismiss the sutra that says these things, then you can claim no sutra says them. But, that's just not accurate or reasonable to say.

On the contrary its a perfectly reasonable thing to say. Outside of the sanghas of some Chinese schools the view that it is not an authentic Sutra is the mainstream.
Back to fishin' folks... :namaste:

User avatar
seeker242
Posts: 1335
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by seeker242 » Fri Mar 20, 2015 11:20 am

Simon E. wrote:
seeker242 wrote:
Malcolm wrote: I don't consider it an authentic Mahāyāna sūtra.
I think it's obvious that Sheng Yen and Hsuan Hua considered it to be an authentic sutra. They aren't the only ones. But yes, if you dismiss the sutra that says these things, then you can claim no sutra says them. But, that's just not accurate or reasonable to say.

On the contrary its a perfectly reasonable thing to say. Outside of the sanghas of some Chinese schools the view that it is not an authentic Sutra is the mainstream.
No it isn't. Not when you are talking about the practice of Chan Buddhism and statements of Chan Masters referencing popular Chan sutras. This isn't the Tibetan Buddhism forum. What is or isn't in the Tibetan Canon is irrelevant. What Tibetans consider authentic or inauthentic is irrelevant. It's also incorrect to say a text of the Chinese Canon is not a sutra when it is simply a fact that it is widely regarded as an authentic sutra by the entire Chan tradition. It's also incorrect to say it's only considered authentic "inside some Chinese schools" and no where else. It doesn't matter what Tibetans or Theravadains think about it's authenticity, to say it's not a sutra is simply factually incorrect.
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!

Simon E.
Posts: 5636
Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Simon E. » Fri Mar 20, 2015 11:59 am

So, basically you are saying that the only view of Hsuan Hua's view of garlic and onions etc etc that is viable is that of those who share his view.

Fair enough..if a somewhat limited discussion.
Back to fishin' folks... :namaste:

Norwegian
Posts: 1458
Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 7:36 pm

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Norwegian » Fri Mar 20, 2015 12:24 pm

seeker242 wrote: This isn't the Tibetan Buddhism forum. What is or isn't in the Tibetan Canon is irrelevant. What Tibetans consider authentic or inauthentic is irrelevant.
seeker242 wrote:It doesn't matter what Tibetans or Theravadains think about it's authenticity, to say it's not a sutra is simply factually incorrect.
Read the following:
Authorship

The first catalogue giving an account of the Śūraṅgama Sūtra was Zhi-sheng (Chinese: 智昇), a monk of the Tang Dynasty. Zhi-sheng said this book was brought back from Guangxi to Luoyang during the Kaiyuan era. He gave two different accounts in two different books, which were published in 730 CE.

1. According to the first account, in his book Buddhist Texts Catalogue of Kaiyuan Era (Chinese: 開元釋教錄), the Śūraṅgama Sūtra was translated about in 713 CE by a monk Huai-Di (Chinese: 懷迪) with an unnamed Indian monk.

2. According to the second account, in his later book The Story About This Translation of Buddhist Scriptures Mural (續古今譯經圖記), the Śūraṅgama Sūtra was translated in May 705 CE by Śramaṇa Pāramiti from Central India, who came to China and brought the text to the province of Guangzhou. The text was then polished and edited by Empress Wu Zetian's former minister, court regulator, and state censor Fang Yong (Chinese: 房融) of Qingho. The translation was reviewed by Śramaṇa Meghaśikha from Oḍḍiyāna, and certified by Śramaṇa Huai-di (Chinese: 懷迪) of Nanlou Monastery (南樓寺) on Mount Luofu (羅浮山).

Zhi-sheng didn't explain why he wrote two different records, but at the end of The story about this translation of Buddhist scriptures mural (續古今譯經圖記) he left a small comment, recommending readers the record at Buddist Book catalogue of Kaiyuan era is better than The story about this translation of Buddhist scriptures mural (續古今譯經圖記).

Dispute about this text arose in 8th century in Japan, so Emperor Kōnin sent a monk to China, asking whether this book was a forgery or not. His Chinese teacher told him that this was forged by Fang Yong. Zhu Xi, a 12th-century Neo-confucian who was opposed to Buddhism, believed that it was created during the Tang Dynasty in China, and did not come from India.

and:

"in-depth meaning of Three Treatise school said, "(Emperor Kōnin) sent Buddhist monks De-Qing (德清)and other to Dang Dynasty to find the answer. The Teacher of De-Qing at Dang dynasty, Buddhist Fa-Siang (Chinese: 法詳), told him, This Shurangama Sutra is forged by Fang Yong, not a real Buddhavacana. But Zhi-sheng know nothing about it, so he make a mistake to list this book at Buddhist texts catalogue." from 玄睿《大乘三論大義鈔》:「遣德清法師等於唐檢之。德清法師承大唐法詳居士:《大佛頂經》是房融偽造,非真佛經也。智昇未詳,謬編正錄。」"

and:

In China during the early modern era, the reformist Liang Qichao claimed that the sutra is apocryphal, writing, "The real Buddhist scriptures would not say things like Surangama Sutra, so we know the Surangama Sutra is apocryphal. In the same era, Lü Cheng (Chinese: 呂澂) wrote an essay to claim that the book is apocryphal, named "One hundred reasons about why Shurangama Sutra is apocryphal" (Chinese: 楞嚴百偽).
Nothing whatsoever related to Tibetans, or Tibetan Buddhism there.

User avatar
seeker242
Posts: 1335
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by seeker242 » Fri Mar 20, 2015 12:35 pm

Simon E. wrote:So, basically you are saying that the only view of Hsuan Hua's view of garlic and onions etc etc that is viable is that of those who share his view.

Fair enough..if a somewhat limited discussion.
Actually, what I'm saying is that a Tibetan does not have the authority to dismiss texts of the Chinese canon as not sutras. Similar to how a Theravadin does not have the authority to dismiss texts of the Tibetan canon. Theravadins do dismiss texts of the Tibetan canon as inauthentic. Does that make them inauthentic? Of course not. Especially not if you are talking about Tibetan Buddhism and statements of Tibetan masters referencing the Tibetan canon.
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!


Simon E.
Posts: 5636
Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Simon E. » Fri Mar 20, 2015 12:55 pm


Epstein is saying that the Sutra is its own means of verification. Just like Jehovah's Witnesses claim for the Book of Deuteronomy.
Back to fishin' folks... :namaste:

Simon E.
Posts: 5636
Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Simon E. » Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:01 pm

seeker242 wrote:
Simon E. wrote:So, basically you are saying that the only view of Hsuan Hua's view of garlic and onions etc etc that is viable is that of those who share his view.

Fair enough..if a somewhat limited discussion.
Actually, what I'm saying is that a Tibetan does not have the authority to dismiss texts of the Chinese canon as not sutras. Similar to how a Theravadin does not have the authority to dismiss texts of the Tibetan canon. Theravadins do dismiss texts of the Tibetan canon as inauthentic. Does that make them inauthentic? Of course not. Especially not if you are talking about Tibetan Buddhism and statements of Tibetan masters referencing the Tibetan canon.
A Tibetan does not need authority to dismiss texts of the Chinese canon. She or he simply does not need to affirm them. The onus is on those who affirm those texts that are unique to the Chinese Canon to show that their authority extends beyond the purview of Chinese Buddhism.
And I see no indication that this is happening.
Back to fishin' folks... :namaste:

User avatar
seeker242
Posts: 1335
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by seeker242 » Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:11 pm

Simon E. wrote:
The onus is on those who affirm those texts that are unique to the Chinese Canon to show that their authority extends beyond the purview of Chinese Buddhism.
No it isn't because the discussion is about chan buddhism, chan masters and a chan sutra. The opinion that it's inauthentic outside of chan buddhism is irrelevant. It's just as irrelevant as Thanissaro Bhikkhu claiming the Buddha never taught Buddha Nature.
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!

Simon E.
Posts: 5636
Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Simon E. » Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:29 pm

You are correct.

And we are alive in a time when all traditions stand face-to-face. So we can choose to be consistent within a particular tradition. We do not need to eliminate differences in order to demonstrate a non existent monoculture.

So to return to the OP, Hsuan Hua's views on a range of topics are not relevant to those outside of a specific range of Buddhist schools.

Information which might be useful to casual readers or inquirers.
Back to fishin' folks... :namaste:

Simon E.
Posts: 5636
Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Simon E. » Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:32 pm

TheSynergist wrote:I recently stumbled across Master Hsuan's commentary on the Shurangama Sutra, which contained this gem:
People who eat pungent plants and also cultivate samadhi will not be protected by the Bodhisattvas, gods, immortals, or good spirits of the ten directions. Who is referred to here? Whoever eats the five pungent plants. If you eat them, it's referring to you. If I eat them, it's referring to me. The text leaves the matter open. Why don't dharma protectors and good spirits guard such people? Because they smell too bad.
He goes on...
When their lives end, these people will join the retinue of demon kings. This refers to people who eat the five pungent plants. Because they eat such things, the gods, immortals, Bodhisattvas, and good spirits do not protect them. Therefore, the demon kings who possess great power can have their way with them. The demon king appears as a Buddha and speaks demonic dharma to them, praising sexual desire, anger, and stupidity. Having been confused by the demons, these people lose their proper knowledge and proper views and any real wisdom. Instead, they harbor deviant knowledge and deviant views.
And also...
Ananda, have you been listening? Those who cultivate for Bodhi, anybody on the path to Bodhi, should never eat the five pungent plants. You definitely must stop eating onions, garlic, leeks, scallions, and chives. If you eat these things, you can end up in the company of the demon kings. If you don't eat these things, you can join the Buddha's retinue. This is the first of the gradual stages of cultivation. This is the first step of progress for a cultivator of the Way.

In cultivation, one must get rid of the causes which aid in the creation of bad karma. The five pungent plants are one cause which aids the demon kings. You should not regard them as unimportant. The five pungent plants make you turbid and confused. They make you impure, and your impurity puts you together with the retinue of demon kings, for the more impure one is, the better they like it.
This is all from:http://www.cttbusa.org/shurangama7/shurangama7.asp

Now I respect the good work that the Master has done to teach/popularize Buddhism in the USA and the world. I just cannot help but find these statement in the commentary about the 5 pungent plants so preposterous that they're hard to take seriously. I also realize that Master Hsuan Hua has also made some controversial statements about homosexuality, divorce, and Tibetans that have been discussed elsewhere on this forum. All things considered, I cannot help but think that Master Hsuan Hua was excessively preoccupied with literalism and traditionalism, although he probably was motivated by genuine compassion and meant well.

Two questions:
1) Do you think it's a good idea to abstain from the five pungent plants?
2) To what extent do you find it possible to respect a Master while still strongly disagreeing with him on some points?

Peace,
The Synergist
This is relevant in terms of the OP which posits itself in terms of popularising Buddhism in world terms...not in terms of a specific school.
Back to fishin' folks... :namaste:

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 28559
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Malcolm » Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:40 pm

PorkChop wrote:
Malcolm wrote:I am sorry, but there is no mention of negative mental effects of garlic in any authentic Mahāyāna sutra. There is a chapter of the Chinese Surangama Samadhi sūtra in the Tibetan canon, chapter ten, where it says that if one eats garlic, it increases desire, if one eats it raw, it increases hatred, but that is all.

I am not questioning Master Sheng Yen's knowledge of the Chinese canon. But I don't think there is any reason to accept what the Chinese Surangama Samadhi has to say at all. I don't consider it an authentic Mahāyāna sūtra. Just because a chapter of it is included in the Tibetan canon does not guarantee its authenticity. There are several texts included in the sutra and dharani section of the Tibetan canon whose authenticity is disputed. This is one of those texts.
Not to be a pest, but AFAIK, the Śūraṅgama Samādhi Sūtra is a separate text from the Śūraṅgama Sūtra. The first is considered an Indian sutra according to Lamotte, the later was the one that caused controversy even as far back as the 8th century, with the Emperor of Japan. The former doesn't seem to involve this topic, as I can't find anything related to "onion", "garlic", "pungent", or even "vegetable" in the sutra.
Right, I was referring the Śūraṅgama Sūtra, there is a chapter of it in the Tibetan canon.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 28559
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Malcolm » Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:02 pm

seeker242 wrote:
Simon E. wrote:
The onus is on those who affirm those texts that are unique to the Chinese Canon to show that their authority extends beyond the purview of Chinese Buddhism.
No it isn't because the discussion is about chan buddhism, chan masters and a chan sutra. The opinion that it's inauthentic outside of chan buddhism is irrelevant. It's just as irrelevant as Thanissaro Bhikkhu claiming the Buddha never taught Buddha Nature.
I rejected the statement primarily because it is unreasonable, because it is in clear conflict with what other sūtras (everyone agrees are authentic Mahāyāna sūtras) as well as the Mūlasarvastivada Vinaya say about garlic and so on.

Whether sūtra in question is an authentic sūtra or not is a very distant secondary consideration for me.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
Posts: 7065
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Master Hsuan Hua on garlic, onions, etc.

Post by Astus » Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:53 pm

Mentioning that this is the Chan section of the forum, since when has Chan come to mean diet?

"In India, the twenty-seven patriarchs only transmitted the imprint of the mind. And the only reason I've come to China is to transmit the instantaneous teaching of the Mahayana: This mind is the buddha. I don't talk about precepts, devotions or ascetic practices such as immersing yourself in water and fire, treading a wheel of knives, eating one meal a day, or never lying down. These are fanatical, provisional teachings."
(Bloodstream Sermon in "The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma", p 41)

The Governor of Hung-chou asked, "Master, should I eat meat and drink wine or should I not?"
The Master replied, "To eat and drink is your blessing. Not to do it is also a blessing."

(Mazu Daoyi, in "Original Teachings of Chan Buddhism", p 152)

"There are people in every quarter who assert that the ten thousand practices and the six pāramitās constitute the buddhadharma. But I say to you that they are merely means of adornment, expedients for carrying out the buddha’s work; they are not buddhadharma [itself]. Even those who keep the rules regarding food and conduct with the care of a man carrying a bowl of oil so as not to spill a drop, if their dharma-eye is not clear they’ll have to pay their debts, and the day will come when the cost of their food will be exacted from them."
(Record of Linji, tr. Sasaki, p 28)
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.


1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"

Post Reply

Return to “Chan”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests