Like fish in a shrinking pond

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jacx
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Like fish in a shrinking pond

Post by jacx » Thu Apr 30, 2015 5:55 pm

Hi,
Does anyone know the source of Samantabadhra's Verse of Exhortation/Admonition (普賢菩薩警世偈) that is chanted in Chan temples at evening service?

"The day is already done. Our lives are that much less
We are like fish in a shrinking pond. What joy is there in this?
Great assembly!
We should be diligent and vigorous, as if our own heads were at stake.
Only be mindful of impermanence and be careful not to be lax."

I can't read Chinese characters, so just pointing me to CBETA won't help!

Thank you very much.
~With Ninja and Everyone Together~

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Astus
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Re: Like fish in a shrinking pond

Post by Astus » Thu Apr 30, 2015 9:14 pm

是日已過 命亦隨減 如少水魚 斯有何樂
"The day is already done. Our lives are that much less
We are like fish in a shrinking pond. What joy is there in this?"


The above is found in the Chinese translations of Dharmapada and the Udanavarga (T210 & T212), matches Udanavarga 1.34 but it has no corresponding stanza in the Pali Dhammapada.

當勤精進 如救頭然 但念無常 慎勿放逸
"We should be diligent and vigorous, as if our own heads were at stake.
Only be mindful of impermanence and be careful not to be lax."


Found in for instance the Ming era compilation "Admonishment for Monastics" (T2023).
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"

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jacx
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Re: Like fish in a shrinking pond

Post by jacx » Thu Apr 30, 2015 11:14 pm

Thank you Astus!

Anyone know when it started to be chanted as a verse? Or how it came to be associated with Puxian Pusa?
~With Ninja and Everyone Together~

zengen
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Re: Like fish in a shrinking pond

Post by zengen » Wed May 06, 2015 5:59 am

I don't know where these verses come from. I chant these verses in my local monastery as well. These verses really motivate me to practice the dharma :smile:
There is no meaning to cyclic existence.

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