The Essential Scripture...

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The Essential Scriptures of the Buddha and Patriarchs

The Diamond Prajñāpāramitā Sūtra

Section 13

At that time, Subhuti addressed the Buddha, saying, “World Honored One, what should we name this sūtra? How should we reverently uphold it?” The Buddha addressed Subhuti, “This sūtra is named the Diamond Prajñāpāramitā and it is under this title that you should reverently retain it. What is the reason for this? Subhuti, the Buddha has taught that the prajñāpāramitā is in fact not prajñāpāramitā; that is what is called prajñāpāramitā. Subhuti, what do you think? Are there any dharmas that the Tathāgata has preached, or not?” Subhuti replied to the Buddha, “World Honored One, the Tathāgata has preached nothing.” “Subhuti, are there a lot of dust motes in the trichiliocosm, or not?” Subhuti replied, “There are an awful lot, World Honored One.” “Subhuti, the Tathāgata has explained that dust motes are not dust motes; those are called dust motes. The Tathāgata has explained that world systems are not world systems; those are called world systems. Subhuti, what do you think? Is it possible to see the Tathāgata through his thirty-two physical characteristics, or not?” “No, World Honored One, it is not possible to see the Tathāgata through his thirty-two physical characteristics. Why is this? It is because the Tathāgata has explained that the thirty-two physical characteristics are not the thirty-two physical characteristics; therefore, they are called the thirty-two physical characteristics. Subhuti, if there were gentlemen and gentlewomen who made offerings of as many of their bodies as there are sands of the Ganges River, the merit would be greater if there were a person who accepts and keeps even a four-line gāthā of this sūtra, and recites it for others.”