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The Bodhisattva Vows
THE FOUR GREAT VOWS
(Repeat Three Times)
Shujô muhen seigan do,
Bonnô mujin seigan dan,
Hômon muryô seigan gaku,
Butsudô mujô seigan jô.
The Four Universal Vows
The Four Bodhisattva Vows are the fundamental vows of the Zen Buddhist path, expressing the bodhisattva's resolution to attain awakening in order to liberate all sentient beings. With enlightenment comes a realization of the fundamental equality of all things, and the understanding that to liberate oneself one must liberate other beings, and that to liberate other beings is none other than to liberate oneself. In this lies the unity of wisdom and compassion. The Four Boddhisattva Vows are chanted in Zen monasteries at the end of daily services, and of memorial services for the departed. They are also chanted after teisho, after the lecture of the Roshi has ended.
Sentient beings are infinite, they will save themselves.
Desires are infinite, they will reach an end by themselves.
Dharmas are infinite, so there is learning, study.
Buddha's way is not above, so it is always accomplished.
Tr. by Kobun Chino Otogawa (1972)
However innumerable all beings are, I vow to save them all
However inexhaustible my delusions are, I vow to overcome them all
However immeasurable the Dharma Teachings are, I vow to fathom them all
The Buddha's Path is endless, I vow to follow it to its very end
Living beings are numberless, I vow to save them all.
Confusions are countless, I vow to cut them all.
The Buddha's teachings are limitless, I vow to penetrate them all
The Buddha's way is highest, I vow to achieve it.
Sentient beings are numberless: I vow to liberate them all.
Desires are inexhaustible: I vow to end them all.
The Dharma gates are infinite: I vow to master them all.
The Buddha way is unsurpassable: I vow to attain it.
Living beings are innumerable: I vow to save them.
Delusive passions are inexhaustible: I vow to extinguish them.
The Dharma gates are immeasurable: I vow to master them.
The Way of the Buddha is unsurpassable: I vow to fulfill it.
Ordinary-beings are innumerable I vow to liberate them all
Defilements are endless I vow to eliminate them all
Buddha's teachings are unlimited I vow to learn them all
The ways of enlightenment are supreme I vow to achieve them all
I vow to liberate all ordinary-beings from my mind
I vow to eliminate all defilements from my mind
I vow to embrace every teaching of my self-nature
I vow to achieve the way of enlightenment from my self-nature
Though the myriad beings are numberless, I vow to save them;
Though defilements rise endlessly, I vow to end them;
Though Dharma gates are innumerable, I vow to study them;
Though Buddha's way is unsurpassed, I vow to embody it.
Beings are numberless; I vow to awaken with them.
Delusions are inexhaustible; I vow to end them.
Dharma gates are boundless; I vow to enter them.
Buddha’s Way is unsurpassable; I vow to become it.
The Four Encompassing Vows
Masses [of] creatures, without-bounds,
[I/we] vow to save [them all].
Anxiety [and] hate, [delusive-desires] inexhaustible,
[I/we] vow to break [them all].
Dharma gates beyond-measure
[I/we] vow to learn [them all].
Buddha Way, nothing-higher,
[I/we] vow to accomplish [it]
However innumerable all beings are,
we vow to enlighten them;
However inexhaustible the passions are,
we vow to extinguish them;
However immeasurable the Dharmas are,
we vow to master them;
However incomparable the Buddha-Truth is,
we vow to attain it.
I will free
the limitless throng of life
I will cut
inexhaustible blinding rage
I will learn
imponderable gateways to truth
I will find
the incomparable way awake
Si nombreux que soient les
êtres, je fais voeux de les sauver tous
Si nombreuses que soient les passions, je fais voeux de les vaincre toutes
Si nombreux que soient les Dharma, je fais voeux de les acquérir tous
Si parfait que soit un Bouddha, je fais voeux de le devenir.
A négy bódhiszattva fogadalom
Fordította: Terebess Gábor
Bár számtalanok az érző lények,
Fogadom, hogy felszabadítom mindet.
Bár kimeríthetetlenek a szenvedélyek,
Fogadom, hogy legyőzöm mindet.
Bár felmérhetetlenek a Tan kapui,
Fogadom, hogy megismerem mindet.
Bár elérhetetlenek Buddha útjai,
Fogadom, hogy bejárom mindet.
A bódhiszattva fogadalom
Fordította: Dobosy Antal
A szenvedő lények számtalanok,
fogadom, hogy mindnek segítségére leszek.
A szenvedélyek kötelékei sokfélék,
fogadom, hogy mindtől megszabadulok.
A tanítások sokrétűek,
fogadom, hogy mindet megismerem.
A Út a teljesség elérése,
fogadom, hogy végigjárom.
Négy Nagy Fogadalom
Fordította: Fődi Attila (Kwang Hae)
A szenvedő lények számtalanok, fogadom, hogy mindet [a túlpartra] vezetem.
A [tudati] szennyeződések [hálói] végtelenek, fogadom, hogy, mindet átvágom.
A tanítások megszámlálhatatlanok, fogadom, hogy mindet megtanulom.
A Buddha útja felülmúlhatatlan, fogadom, hogy [magam is] megvalósítom.
A négy fogadalom
Fordította: Marghescu Mária
Az élőlények száma végtelen, fogadom, hogy mind megszabadítom.
A félrevezető gondolatok és érzelmek világa kimeríthetetlen, fogadom, hogy mind elkerülöm.
Az igaz tanok sora megszámlálhatatlan, fogadom, hogy mind megtanulom.
A felébredés útja felülmúlhatatlan, fogadom, hogy szüntelenül járom.
Precept Practice and Theory in Sōtō Zen
by David E. Riggs
ZEN BUDDHIST PRECEPTS
The Three Pure Precepts
(with commentaries from the Kyojukaimon)
Keep all precepts.
This is the cave where all Dharmas of all Buddhas arise.
Practise all good Dharma.
This is the root-origin whence all Buddhas and Dharmas arise.
Save the many beings.
The Dharma of the Supreme Way is the way to do and have done.
The Three Vows of Refuge
(with commentary from the Kyojukaimon)
I take refuge in the Buddha;
I take refuge in the Dharma;
I take refuge in the Sangha.
The Great Precepts of all the Buddhas have been maintained and protected by all the Buddhas. Buddhas hand them down to Buddhas, and Ancestral Teachers hand them down to Ancestral Teachers. Acceptance and observance of the Precepts transcends past, present, and future, and the perfect accord between the realization of teacher and disciple, and continues through all ages.
Our great teacher Shakyamuni Buddha imparted them to Mahakashyapa, and Mahakashyapa transmitted them to Ananda. Already the Precepts have passed through many generations in direct succession, reaching down to the present head of this temple.
Now, receiving the Great Precepts, I vow to requite my deep obligation to the Buddhas and Ancestral teachers. I pledge to establish these Precepts as essential teachings for human beings and all other beings so that eventually all will inherit the wisdom of the Buddha.
The Ten Grave Precepts
(with commentaries by Bodhidharma and Dogen Zenji)
1. Not Killing.
Bodhidharma: Self-nature is subtle and mysterious. In the realm of the everlasting Dharma, not giving rise to the ideal of killing is called the Precept of Not Killing.
Dogen Zenji: The Buddha seed grows in accordance with not taking life. Transmit the life of Buddha's wisdom and do not kill.
2. Not Stealing.
Bodhidharma: Self-nature is subtle and mysterious. In the realm of the unattainable Dharma, not having thoughts of gaining is called the Precept of Not Stealing.
Dogen Zenji: The self and things of the world are just as they are. The gate of emancipation is open.
3. Not Misusing Sex.
Bodhidharma: Self-nature is subtle and mysterious. In the realm of the ungilded Dharma, not creating a veneer of attachment is called the Precept of Not Misusing Sex.
Dogen Zenji: The Three Wheels are pure and clear. When you have nothing to desire, you follow the way of all Buddhas.
4. Not Lying.
Bodhidharma: Self-nature is subtle and mysterious. In the realm of the inexplicable Dharma, not preaching a single word is called the Precept of Not Lying.
Dogen Zenji: The Dharma Wheel turns from the beginning. There is neither surplus nor lack. The whole universe is moistened with nectar, and the truth is ready to harvest.
5. Not Giving or Taking Drugs.
Bodhidharma: Self-nature is subtle and mysterious. In the realm of the intrinsically pure Dharma, not giving rise to delusions is called the Precept of Not Giving or Taking Drugs.
Dogen Zenji: Drugs are not brought in yet. Don't let them invade. That is the great light.
6. Not Discussing Faults of Others.
Bodhidharma: Self-nature is subtle and mysterious. In the realm of the flawless Dharma, nor expounding upon error is called the Precept of Not Speaking of Faults of Others.
Dogen Zenji: In the Buddha Dharma, there is one path, one Dharma, one realization, one practice. Don't permit fault-finding. Don't permit haphazard talk.
7. Not Praising Yourself While Abusing Others.
Bodhidharma: Self-nature is subtle and mysterious. In the realm of the equitable Dharma, not dwelling upon I against you is called the Precept of Not Praising Yourself while Abusing Others.
Dogen Zenji: Buddhas and Ancestral Teachers realize the empty sky and the great earth. When they manifest the noble body, there is neither inside nor outside in emptiness. When they manifest the Dharma body, there is not even a bit of earth on the ground.
8. Not Sparing the Dharma Assets.
Bodhidharma. Self-nature is subtle and mysterious. In the genuine, all-pervading Dharma, not being stingy about a single thing is called the Precept of Not Sparing the Dharma Assets.
Dogen Zenji: One phrase, one verse--that is the ten thousand things and one hundred grasses; one Dharma, one realization--that is all Buddhas and Ancestral Teachers. Therefore, from the beginning, there has been no stinginess at all.
9. Not Indulging in Anger.
Bodhidharma: Self-natue is subtle and mysterious. In the realm of the selfless Dharma, not contriving reality for the self is called the Precept of Not Indulging in Anger.
Dogen Zenji: Not advancing, not retreating, not real, not empty. There is an ocean of bright clouds. There is an ocean of solemn clouds.
10. Not Defaming the Three Treasures.
Bodhidharma: Self-nature is subtle and mysterious. In the realm of the One, nor holding nihilistic concepts of ordinary beings and sages is called the Precept of Not Defaming the Three Treasures.
Dogen Zenji: The teisho of the actual body is the harbour and the weir. This is the most important thing in the world. Its virtue finds its home in the ocean of essential nature. It is beyond explanation. We just accept it with respect and gratitude.