The Essential Scripture...


The Essential Scriptures of the Buddha and Patriarchs

Secrets on Cultivating the Mind

Section 17

If you say that it is the physical body that is acting, then at the moment when a person’s life comes to an end, even though the body has not yet decayed, how is it that the eyes cannot see, the ears cannot hear, the nose cannot smell, the tongue cannot talk, the body cannot move, the hands cannot grasp, and the feet cannot run? You should know that what is capable of seeing, hearing, moving, and acting is perforce your original mind; it is not your physical body. Furthermore, the four elements that make up the physical body are by nature empty; they are like reflections in a mirror or the moon’s [reflection] in water. How can they be clear and constantly aware, always bright and never obscured―and, when stimulated, be able to put into operation sublime functions as numerous as the sands of the Ganges? For this reason it is said, “Superpowers and sublime functions are drawing water and carrying firewood.”

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