In the preceding post I talked about how a sutra is also used an amulet. This can be a traditional sutra or a miniature sutra. Each of these sutras will definitely be a protective amulet, but more than that they also have different peripheral blessings that they bestow to anyone who has them.
All sutras offers some blessings when one read it, but when use as a sutra some are more powerful than others, only because the Buddha himself has made it as such. Don’t get me wrong all are powerful but the Buddha himself has indirectly assigned specific additional blessings in some of these sutras. These additional blessings are mentioned in the actual teachings of the Buddha as stated in the sutra itself.
Some of these sutras that are considered really powerful are THE DIAMOND OF PERFECT WISDOM SUTRA, THE MEDICINE BUDDHA SUTRA, THE GOLDEN LIGHT SUTRA and THE SUTRA OF THE PAST VOWS OF EARTH STORE (KSITIGARBHA) BODHISATTVA.
As I said one of the most powerful sutra is “THE DIAMOND OF PERFECT WISDOM SUTRA”, (also called “The Vajra Cutter Perfection of Wisdom Sutra” or “The Vajra Sutra” or “The Vajra Cutter Sutra” or “The Diamond Sutra). According to the Buddha, as stated in the said sutra when one recites and comprehends the said sutra one’s merits or blessings will exceed that of person who fills a trichiliocosm with the seven jewels and gives them away in charity. It will be difficult for me to explain a trichiliocosm but that should be tremendous amount of merits.
Paragraph 11: “Subhuti, what do you think? If a person fills a trichiliocosm with the seven jewels and gives them away in charity, wouldn’t the merit attained by this person be great?” Subhuti said, “Extremely great, World Honored One. Why? The nature of merit is empty; therefore the Tathagata says that this merit is great.” The Buddha said: “But if a person comprehends and follows even a four-line verse of this sutra, and teaches it to others, this person’s merit would exceed that of the former example. Why? Subhuti, all buddhas and all of their teachings on unsurpassed complete enlightenment originate from this sutra.
Paragraph 19: “Subhuti, what do you think? If there were as many Ganges Rivers as the grains of sand in the Ganges, wouldn’t the amount of sand contained in all those Ganges Rivers be great?” Subhuti said, “Extremely great, World Honored One. If even the number of the Ganges Rivers is innumerable, how much more so their grains of sand?” “Subhuti, now I tell you truthfully: If a good man or good woman fills as many trichiliocosms as the grains of sand in all those Ganges Rivers with the seven jewels, and gives them away in charity, wouldn’t this merit be great?” “Extremely great, World Honored One.” The Buddha said to Subhuti: “If a good man or good woman is able to comprehend and follow a four-line verse of this sutra and teach it to others, their merit will be far greater.”
You might be wondering what has merits to do with protection and blessings. A merit is another term for good karma, so simply reciting and understanding THE DIAMOND SUTRA creates unbelievable merits for us.
Allow me to share a short story about somebody who has greatly benefited from THE DIAMOND SUTRA as shared by my Guru Lama. This is the story of an illiterate Tibetan who was born in exile in India. Kunchen is the second son of a family who left Tibet for India at that time China was attempting to assassinate the Dalai Lama. His family supposedly left Tibet 2 years after the Dalai Lama left.
I won’t go into details how difficult it is for Tibetans to live in a country whose climate is totally different from them, or at least, where they were assigned by the Indian Government, which is in Dharamsala. Kunchen’s older brother, who was born in Tibet, was put in a monastery so that he can become a monk, something that is quite a common practice amongst Tibetan Buddhists.
Kunchen became the eldest, and all he remembers that his father has to go to a different place to work, so it was left to his mom and Kunchen to run the house. Kunchen has 2 more younger siblings. Kunchen had a difficult life and so when he reached 18 he decided to leave his family and took his to get work in other parts of India.
Kunchen, found himself working from one employer to another. He seems to be a skilled worker and can easily learn new things, however, it seems his biggest problem that he seems to have a deep-seated anger that he was born poor and somehow without any particular reasons he has detested all his employers.
Soon Kunchen got married and had sons and daughters of his own. He and wife both had to work to make ends meet, and still Kunchen can’t hold a job for more than three years. Although he still considered himself as Buddhist, most Tibetans are and can’t see themselves otherwise, he has never practiced his faith.
Kunchen seems to unable stop problems from arising also. His eldest son had an accident and became bedridden, and then her daughter was sexually molested by an Indian neighbor and she became a mother at 15 years of age. On top of that, money seems to be always a problem, and while Kunchen has always been drinking liquor, these two incidents made him more dependent in alcohol.
It was at this time that Kunchen’s wife tried to look for her mother – in – law whom she has never met. You have to understand the mentality of the Tibetan women or wives, once they got married if they have a problem they normally will seek out the parents of their husbands and not their own mothers. And this is what Kunchen’s wife deed. It took a long time for her to track down her in – laws because Kunchen has stopped communicating with them.
When Kunchen’s mom got the letter she immediately decided to go and pay visit Kunchen a visit. One of her grandsons went with her, but at that time Kunchen’s father had already passed away.
After the initial emotions of seeing each other for a long time, Kunchen’s mother encouraged them to go home with her. She is still in Dharamsala but their life is so much better now, but maybe out of shame for abandoning his family, Kunchen wouldn’t hear of any of it. Because she cannot do anything for them other than to give them some monetary help, she talked to the wife of Kunchen and confirmed that they are still basically Buddhist. She then left with them a book, a traditional sutra, and told them to place it on their altar. The daughter then claimed that both she and Kunchen are unable to read. The mother then informed her that it doesn’t matter and to just put the book on their altar. That book, Kunchen and her wife alter found out is a copy in a traditional sutra form of THE DIAMOND OF PERFECT WISDOM SUTRA.
According to my Guru Lama, Kunchen claimed that as soon as he received the traditional sutra, things started to get better. Now, at the age of more than 60, and even he still can’t read, Kunchen and his wife owns several businesses. His grandson from her daughter who bore the child at 15 was the one who helped them run their business. Kunchen made sure all his grandchildren are able to go to school, and they help him with reading the documents but Kunchen and his wife makes the decisions. Of course, now that his grandchildren are older they get to make decisions also.
Kunchen swears that it was THE DIAMOND OF PERFECT WISDOM SUTRA left in the house by his mother who started all the good luck. In fact, Kunchen claims that the atmosphere seems altogether became different. Is this feeling psychological?
I think not, because THE DIAMOND SUTRA itself stated that wherever the sutra is, it is as if the Buddha and Buddha’s revered disciples were also present. And who are the Buddha’s revered disciples, they are the Bodhisattvas or Pratyekabuddhas! This means the place itself becomes holy. In fact, if one recites the sutra, that place should be venerated as a Buddha – shrine. That’s how powerful THE DIAMOND SUTRA is. And remember Kunchen nor his wife could have not read this because they are both illiterate.
Paragraph 20: “Furthermore, Subhuti, wherever one teaches or recites so much as a four-line verse of this sutra, that place should be venerated as a Buddha-shrine by heavenly beings, human beings, and asuras in this world. How much more so is the case where one can completely remember, comprehend, and follow this sutra! Subhuti, you should know that such a person has achieved the highest, rarest of accomplishments. Wherever this sutra is present, it is as if the Buddha and the Buddha’s revered disciples were also present.”
This is indeed one of the most powerful sutra and simply having this will definitely shower upon the holder/owner not only great protection but also wonderful blessings of wealth, health, harmony, and peace.
Paragraph 29: “Subhuti, if a good man or good woman renounces their life for charity in the morning as many times as there are grains of sand in the Ganges, and does likewise at noon and in the evening, continuing thus for immeasurable hundreds of thousands of millions of kalpas; and if someone else hears this teaching and gives rise to unwavering faith, the merit of the latter would far exceed that of the former. How much more the merits of those who transcribe, recite, remember, follow, and explain this sutra to others!
In fact, if you have this sutra, the Buddha has instructed that heavenly beings and asuras, aside from human being should come and make offerings. That shows how holy and powerful and important this sutra is. That is also the reason why it should be put on the altar or on a high clean dry place. It should never be put on the floor, or chair, or bed, or dining table.
Paragraph 30 Sentence 5: Subhuti, wherever this sutra is present, all the heavenly and human beings and asuras in all the worlds should come and make offerings. You should know that its presence is equivalent to a pagoda that all should venerate and pay homage to, by circumambulating or scattering flowers and incense around its grounds.”
Paragraph 43: “Subhuti, if a person accumulates the seven jewels into mounds equivalent to all Mt. Sumerus in the worlds of a trichiliocosm and gives them away in charity, and another person recites, remembers, followed, and teaches this prajna paramita sutra or even a four-line verse of this sutra to others, the merit of the former would not be a hundredth, or even a billionth, of that of the latter. In fact, the merit of the latter would be so great that no comparison, by calculation or by analogy, could possibly be made.”
In my future posts, I will talk about stories of people who have benefitted simply by having this sutra at home.
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