Every day in Zen centers around the world, there is the practice of Sutra chanting for the benefit of all beings. Our ancestors and our lineage created a way to connect to the teachings themselves: in the chants are teachings of compassion, equanimity and wisdom.
Sentient beings are numberless; I vow to save them.
Delusions are inexhaustible; I vow to put an end to them.
The Dharmas are boundless; I vow to master them.
The Buddha Way is unattainable; I vow to attain it.
Vast is the robe of liberation,
A formless field of benefaction.
I wear the Tathagata teaching,
Saving all sentient beings.
The Dharma, incomparably profound and infinitely subtle,
Is rarely encountered, even in millions of ages.
Now we see it, hear it, receive and maintain it.
May we completely realize the Tathagata’s true meaning.
All evil karma ever committed by me since of old,
On account of my beginningless greed, anger and ignorance,
Born of my body, mouth and thought,
Now I atone for it all.
Let me respectfully remind you:
Life and Death are of supreme importance.
Time swiftly passes by and opportunity is lost.
On this night, the days of our life are decreased by one.
Each of us should strive to awaken.
Awaken! Take heed! Do not squander your life.
All Buddhas throughout space and time
All Bodhisattva Mahasattvas
Maha Prajña Paramita.
Maha Prajña Paramita Heart Sutra
Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva, doing deep Prajña Paramita,
Clearly saw emptiness of all the five conditions
Thus completely relieving misfortune and pain.
O Shariputra, form is no other than emptiness,
Emptiness no other than form;
Form is exactly emptiness, emptiness exactly form.
Sensation, conception, discrimination,
awareness are likewise like this.
O Shariputra, all Dharmas are forms of emptiness:
Not born, not destroyed;
Not stained, not pure, without loss, without gain.
So in emptiness there is no form, no sensation, conception, discrimination, awareness.
No eye, ear, nose, tongue, body, mind; no color, sound, smell, taste, touch, phenomena.
No realm of sight, no realm of consciousness, no ignorance and no end to ignorance,
No old age and death, no end to old age and death,
No suffering, no cause of suffering, no extinguishing,
No path, no wisdom and no gain. No gain and thus the Bodhisattva lives Prajña Paramita, with no hindrance in the mind.
No hindrance, therefore no fear.
Far beyond deluded thoughts, this is Nirvana.
All past, present and future Buddhas live Prajña Paramita
And therefore attain Añutara-Samyak-Sambodhi.
Therefore know Prajña Paramita is the great mantra,
The vivid mantra, the best mantra, the unsurpassable mantra.
It completely clears all pain. This is the truth, not a lie.
So set forth the Prajña Paramita mantra,
Set forth this mantra and say:
Gate Gate Paragate! Parasamgate! Bodhi Svaha! Prajna Heart Sutra!
Maka Hannya Haramita
Kan Ji Zai Bo Sa Gyo Jin Han Nya Ha Ra Mi Ta Ji Sho Ken Go On Kai Ku Do I Sai Ku Yaku Sha Ri Shi Shiki Fu I Ku Ku Fu I Shiki Shiki Soku Ze Ku Ku Soku Ze Shiki Ju So Gyo Shiki Yaku Bu Nyo Ze Sha Ri Shi Ze Sho Ho Ku So Fu Sho Fu Metsu Fu Ku Fu Jo Fu Zo Fu Gen Ze Ko Ku Chu Mu Shiki Mu Ju So Gyo Shiki Mu Gen Ni Bi Ze Shin Ni Mu Shiki Sho Ko Mi Soku Ho Mu Gen Kai Nai Shi Mu I Shiki Kai Mu Mu Myo Yaku Mu Mu Myo Jin Nai Shi Mu Ro Shi Yaku Mu Ro Shi Jin Mu Ku Shu Metsu Do Mu Chi Yaku Mu Toku I Mu Sho Tok’ko Bo Dai Sat Ta E Han-Nya Ha Ra Mi Ta Ko Shin Mu Kei Ge Mu Kei Ge Ko Mu U Ku Fu On Ri Is-Sai Ten Do Mu So Ku Gyo Ne Han San Ze Sho Butsu E Han Nya Ha Ra Mi Ta Ko Toku A Noku Ta Ra San Myaku San Bo Dai Ko Chi Han-Nya Ha Ra Mi Ta Ze Dai Jin Shu Ze Dai Myo Shu Ze Mu Jo Shu Ze Mu To To Shu No Jo Is sai Ku Shin Jitsu Fu Ko Ko Setsu Han Nya Ha Ra Mi Ta Shu Soku Setsu Shu Watsu Gya Tei Gya Tei Ha Ra Gya Tei Hara So Gya Tei Bo Ji Sowa Ka Han Nya Shin Gyo
No Mo San Man Da Moto Nan Oha Ra Chi Koto Sha Sono Nan To Ji To En Gya Gya Gya Ki Gya Ki Un Nun Shiu Ra Shiu Ra Hara Shiu Ra Hara Shiu Ra Chishu Sa Chishu Sa Chishu Ri Chishu Ri Sowa Ja Sowa Ja Sen Chi Gya Shiri E Somo Ko
Kan Ze On Na Mu Butsu Yo Butsu U In Yo Butsu U En Bup Po So En Jo Raku Ga Jo Cho Nen Kan Ze On Bo Nen Kan Ze On Nen Nen Ju Shin Ki Nen Nen Fu Ri Shin
The Dharma of thusness
Is intimately conveyed by Buddhas and Ancestors;
Now you have it,
Keep it well.
Filling a silver bowl with snow,
Hiding a heron in the moonlight –
When you array them, they’re not the same;
When you mix them, you know where they are.
The meaning is not in the words,
Yet it responds to the inquiring impulse.
If you’re excited, it becomes a pitfall;
If you miss it you fall into retrospective hesitation.
Turning away and touching are both wrong,
For it is like a mass of fire.
Just to depict it in literary form
Is to relegate it to defilement.
It is bright just at midnight;
It doesn’t appear at dawn.
It acts as a guide for beings –
Its use removes all pains.
Although it is not fabricated,
It is not without speech.
It is like facing a jewel mirror;
Form and image behold each other –
You are not it,
It is actually you.
It is like a babe in the world,
In five aspects complete;
It does not come nor go,
Nor rise nor stand.
“Baba wawa” –
Is there anything said or not?
Ultimately, it does not apprehend anything,
Because its speech is not yet correct.
It is like the six lines of the double split hexagram;
The relative and absolute integrate –
Piled up, they make three;
The complete transformation makes five.
It is like the taste of the five-flavored herb,
Like the diamond thunderbolt.
Subtly included within the true,
Inquiry and response come up together.
Communing with the source and communing with the process.
It includes integration and includes the road;
Merging is auspicious;
Do not violate it.
Naturally real yet inconceivable,
It is not within the province of delusion or enlightenment.
With causal conditions, time and season,
Quiescently it shines bright.
In its fineness, it fits into spacelessness;
In its greatness, it is utterly beyond location.
A hairsbreadth deviation
Will fail to accord with the proper attunement.
Now there are sudden and gradual,
In connection with which are set up basic approaches.
Once basic approaches are distinguished,
Then there are guiding rules.
But even though the basis is reached and the approach comprehended,
True eternity still flows.
Outwardly still while inwardly moving,
Like a tethered colt, a trapped rat –
The ancient saints pitied them,
And bestowed upon them the teaching;
According to their delusions,
They called black as white –
When erroneous imaginations cease,
The acquiescent mind realizes itself.
If you want to conform to the ancient way,
Please observe the ancients of former times;
When about to fulfill the way of Buddhahood,
One gazed at a tree for ten aeons,
Like a tiger leaving part of its prey,
A horse with a white left hind leg.
Because there is the base,
There are jewel pedestals, fine clothing;
Because there is the startling difference,
(There are) house, cat and cow.
Yi, with his archer’s skill,
Could hit a target at a hundred paces;
But when arrow points meet head on,
What has this to do with the power of skill?
When the wooden man begins to sing,
The stone woman gets up to dance;
It’s not within the reach of feeling or discrimination –
How could it admit of consideration in thought?
A minister serves the lord,
A son obeys the father.
Not obeying is not filial,
Not serving is no help.
Practice intimately, working within,
As though a fool, like an idiot;
If you can achieve continuity,
This is called the host within the host.
The mind of the Great Sage of India was intimately conveyed from West to East.
Among human beings are wise ones and fools,
But in the Way there is no northern and southern Ancestor.
The subtle source is clear and bright;
The tributary streams flow through the darkness.
To be attached to things is illusion;
To encounter the absolute is not yet enlightenment.
Each and all the subjective and objective spheres are related,
and at the same time independent.
Related and yet working differently.
Though each keeps its own place,
form makes the character and appearance different.
Sounds distinguish comfort and discomfort.
The dark makes all words one; the brightness distinguishes good and bad phrases.
The four elements return to their own nature as a child to its mother.
Fire is hot, wind moves, water is wet, earth hard.
Eyes see, ears hear, nose smells, tongue tastes the salt and sour.
Each is independent of the other.
Cause and effect must return to the great reality.
The words high and low are used relatively.
Within light there is darkness, but do not try to understand that darkness.
Within darkness there is light, but do not look for that light
Light and darkness are a pair, like the foot before and the foot behind in walking.
Each thing has its own intrinsic value and is related to everything else in function and position.
Ordinary life fits the absolute as a box and its lid.
The absolute works together with the relative like two arrows meeting in mid-air.
Reading words you should grasp the great reality.
Do not judge by any standards.
If you do not see the Way,
You do not see it even as you walk on it.
When you walk the Way it is not near, it is not far.
If you are deluded, you are mountains and rivers away from it.
I respectfully say to those who wish to be enlightened
Do not waste your time by night or day!