I believe that in the last little exploration we touched the first three merits. So. Now, let’s take a look at the next three.
Fourth Merit: supreme capability.
Good Children! Fourthly the inconceivable merit power of this sutra is as follows:
If a living being can hear this sutra but once, only one verse and phrase, she will obtain the spirit of bravery, and relieve others, even though she cannot yet relieve herself. She will become the attendant of the Buddhas together with all of the Bodhisattvas, and all the Buddha-Tathagatas will always preach the law to her. On hearing it, she will keep the law entirely and follow it without disobeying. Moreover, she will interpret it for people extensively as occasion calls.
Good Children! Suppose that a new prince is born of a king and queen. A day, two days, or seven days, and a month, two months, or seven months passing away, he attain the age of one, two, or seven. Although he can not yet manage national affairs, he will come to be revered by people and take all the great kings sons into his company. The King And Queen will always stay and converse with him, with special and deep affection because he is their little child.
Good Children! The keeper of this sutra is also like this. The King–The Buddha– and the queen–this sutra–come together, and this son–a Bodhisattva– is born of them.
If the Bodhisattva can hear one phrase or verse of this sutra once, twice, ten times, a hundred times, a thousand time, myriad times, myriad kotis of time, or innumerable and numberless times like the sands of the Ganges, he will come to shake the Three-Thousand Great Thousand fold world, though he can not yet realize the Ultimate Truth, and will take all great Bodhisattvas into his attendance, while being admired by all of the four classes and eight guardians, though he can not yet roll the great law wheel, with the sacred voice like the roll of thunder. Entering deeply into the secret law of the Buddhas, he will interpret it without error or fault. He will always be protected by all of the Buddhas, and especially covered with affection, because he is a beginner in learning.
Good Children! This is called the fourth inconceivable merit power of this sutra.
Fifth Merit: supreme realization
Good Children! Fifthly, the inconceivable merit power of this sutra is as follows:
If good sons or good daughters keep, read, and recite and copy such a profound and supreme great vehicle, either during the Buddhas lifetime or after his extinction, they will realize the way of great Bodhisattvas though they cannot yet be delivered from all the faults of an ordinary man, and are still wrapped in delusions. They will fill with joy and convince those living beings, extending a day to a hundred Kalpas, or shortening a hundred Kalpas to a day.
Good Children! These good sons or good daughters are just like a dragon’s son who can raise clouds and cause a rainfall seven days after his birth.
Good Children! This is called the fifth inconceivable merit power of this sutra.
Sixth Merit: supreme deliverance capability
Good Sons! Sixthly, the inconceivable merit power of this sutra is as follows:
If good sons or good daughters keep, read, and recite this sutra either during the Buddhas lifetime, or after his extinction, even though clothed in delusions, they will deliver living beings from the life and death of delusions, and make them overcome all sufferings, by preaching the law for them. After hearing it, living beings will put it into practice, and attain the law, the merit, and the way, where there will be equality, and no difference from the Buddha Tathagata.
Suppose that a king, in journeying, or falling ill, leaves the management of national affairs to his prince, though he is an infant. Then the prince, by order of the great king, leads all of the government officials according to the law, and propagates the right policy, so that every citizen of the country follows his orders exactly as if the king were governing. It is the same with good sons or good daughters keeping this sutra. During the Buddhas lifetime, or after his extinction, these good sons will propagate the doctrine, preaching exactly as the Buddha did, though they themselves cannot live in the first stage of immobility, and if living beings, after hearing their preaching, practice it intently, they will cut off delusions, and attain the law, the merit, and the way.
Good Sons! This is called the sixth inconceivable merit power of this sutra.
Notice that in each case, though the being has not yet reached perfection, they are capable (by GNOing the infinite meanings sutra) of performing the duties of the Perfectly Liberated Ones.
Wiping away the droppings of the petty mind– discrimination, differentiation, delusion– the one with gnosis of the infinite meanings sutra abides in the pure land with the infinite light of their own original nature 😉
The Kingdom is here, now. Those who have not discovered the infinite meanings sutra are still looking for the Kingdom (as a thing, in a place, for an ego, in a context).
Having discovered what was hidden, having uncovered what was shrouded with greed, hatred and delusion, and after having sought, found, become disturbed, marveled, reigned and rested– you spin the wheel of samsara and jump back in for another go ’round. Riding on the waves, like a surfer, you find joy amidst sufferings of all kinds. You hold a lamp, and shine a light, for those that scramble blindly through darkness. You give a foundation, and become a ‘conduit of certainty’ , for those who are lost in petty nihilism.
Having touched Infinite Dharmas,
you have lit the brightest flame of wisdom.
Light rays emitted from your heart
meet consciousness of passersby
and they are suddenly awakened to their own deepest [non]selves.
GATE GATE PARAGATE PARASAMGATE BODHI SVAHA