All Good and Wise Advisors
by Venerable Master Hsuan Hua

All Good and Wise Advisors: Today marks the completion of the recitation of the Avatamsaka Sutra. Since you have been so sincere, I am sure you all have attained auspicious responses. The text we read this morning urges us to bring forth the Bodhi resolve. That passage of text said that by bringing forth the Bodhi resolve, we will increase our good roots, improve our health, and will be able to dispel poisons. The Bodhi resolve increases the goodness in our hearts and causes us to draw near to good and wise advisors. Therefore, it is very important to bring forth the resolve for Bodhi in our cultivation toward Buddhahood.

What is the Bodhi resolve? I remember when I was still a layperson, the Venerable Master told me "You should make the Bodhi resolve." I asked him what that was. "The Bodhi resolve," he replied, "involves cutting off desires and getting rid of emotional love." That leaves the question, what desires and emotional love need to be cut off? I have been pondering the perpetual desires we are emersed in. Aside from the fundamental desire of lust, we have enormous desires for many, many things. For example, in doing things, we crave praise; in seeing good things, we like them and want to possess them. Actually, our desires are with us at all time and in all places!

Therefore the cutting off desires and the getting rid of emotional love are fundamentally important. Once desires are eliminated, we won't be selfish. Once emotional love is gone, we won't crave what is good while hating to see others get it. Once able to cut off desires and get rid of emotional love, we won't indulge in fighting, being greedy, seeking, being selfish, seeking for personal benefits and lying. Thus, to bring forth the Bodhi mind is actually to put the six guidelines of the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas into practice. Having made the resolve for Bodhi, we will advance in our practice without regret or remorse, regardless how much toil is involved, regardless whatever others recognize our worth. Isn't that what Bodhisattvas have always have been doing! Why is the merit and virtue of bringing forth the Bodhi mind so great? It increases ones wisdom. Based on it we can surely progress on the path to Buddhahood by cutting off desires and getting rid of emotional love. This practice also enables us to turn the complicated and false mind back into the fundamental innocent and simple mind. Just now someone asked why she often saw the lotus flowers in the sky when she was little, but no longer see them as an adult? Many people have similar experiences. Children are na´ve and simple. The mind is fundamentally pure. That's why children can so easily see various states. As we grow older, false thoughts scattered our attention and become dust that covers over the true mind. That is why we don't see anything. If you bring forth the Bodhi mind, you can return to the origin and as you do so, the innocent unbiased mind will manifest again.

Today is the completion of the session, I hope everyone will practice the principles you learn from the Sutra in your daily lives. May you bring forth an exceedingly great Bodhi mind, one that pervades worlds as many as the grains of sand in the Gange River, and find out who you are!