Passing Through Five Barriers and Enlightening Six Generals to Gain Bodhi【serial 1】

Master Yin Guang



【连载之一】【Serial 1】


Opening Statement


Whether There's Afterlife?

【连载之二】【Serial 2】



▍第一关 四大假合

The First Barrier: The False Compound of Four Great Elements

▍第二关 非同非异

The Second Barrier: Neither Identical nor Different

▍第三关 随心应量

The Third Barrier: Quantity and Quality in accord with

the Mind's Capacity

【连载之三】【Serial 3】

▍第四关 心现识变

The Forth Barrier: Manifestation of the Mind,

Transformation of the Consciousness

【连载之四】【Serial 4】

▍第五关 一心三藏

The Fifth Barrier: Three Treasuries of One Mind

【连载之五】【Serial 5】

▍第六关 无情亦情

The Sixth Barrier: The Non Sentient Being Is the

Sentient Being


The Essence of the Perfect Teaching

【连载之六】【Serial 6】


Sudden Enlightenment of Bodhi




·Opening Statement




Dear Masters, Dharma practitioners and everyone gathered here,

Welcome you all! Amitabha!

Today I'd like to give a special dharma talk entitled "Passing Through Five Barriers and Enlightening Six Generals to Gain Bodhi". So-called "passing through five barriers" means we will discuss five essential topics highly summarized and abstracted from the Shurangama Sutra, the topics are from simple to abstract and are closely related. While "enlightening six generals" means six of our false perceptions will be eradicated one by one when six topics, with the last one separated from the content of the previous five in order to make further explanation, are expounded. "To gain Bodhi" means once you understand the truth, you will be enlightened and accomplished in the moment. This enlightenment is called understanding the mind and seeing the nature, you will see the true face of all things.


Confused in five desires and six dusts, all beings have hence lost the wonderful use of innumerable merits of the nature of their true mind. Now through this Dharma talk, we are going to be free from layers of confusions and upside-downess in the moment. The ancients said: Heaven, earth and I are of the same root, all things and I are of the same body. So are the truth of dharma. The Tripitaka and twelve pisions are all developed on this purpose.


As we all know, originated from India and thrives in China, Buddhadharma, Mahayana Buddhism in particular, isthe most influential on the mainland China. In the long river of history of over two thousand years, Buddhadharma has gone through waxes and wanes. Look at today's world, people's understanding of Buddha, Buddhist sutras and Buddhadharma varies. As mentioned in the sutra, we are now in the Dharma-Ending Age and in the evil world of the Five Turbidities. All beings are drinking bitterness and eating poison, their annoyances arise like wildfire. As many false teachers as the sand of Ganges pretend to teach the dharma. As a result, in the long history of the inheritance of the Buddhadharma, the truth has been distorted gradually. Truth is taken as false views and vice versa. Note that, this is by no means alarmist! Everyone can feel it.


Living in an age lack of belief, there are a great number of people who not only believe in no Buddha themselves, but also verbally attack those who mention Buddhadharma. In their eyes, chanting and worshiping Buddha by practitioners are all superstitious. Is it indeed superstition? What is authentic Buddhadharma? I hope we adopt an attitude of seeking truth from facts and putting down all kinds of views in dharma practice, so we can discuss the truth of Buddhadharma together.


There is a saying in Buddhism from ancient times that "The Lotus Sutra is to attain Buddhahood, the Shurangama Sutra is to achieve Enlightenment." It is beyond controversy that the Lotus Sutra and the Shurangama Sutra are the kings of all sutras, the wisdom-life of all Buddhas, and the last will of Sakyamuni's Nirvana.


So the real purpose of each Buddha's manifestation is neither to teach us how to burn incense and pray nor to meditate and set animals free nor to chant, but to reveal the truth of the universe and life—where do we come from? How about animals? And the sun, the moon and stars, mountains and rivers? What on earth is wind, cloud, rain or fog? Why there's good and bad smells, bitter and spicy tastes? Among the sky above my head, the ground under my feet and me, which one is the biggest? Why? What's the connection between me and everything? What's their relationship to each other? How many Buddhas, people, dogs, mud, trees, wind, and drops of rain are there throughout the cosmos?


Pay attention here. These questions seem very simple, right? Actually, they are the hardest, so hard that they are still beyond the reach of our understanding regardless the numerous incredible inventions people made with science and advanced high-tech achievements of various kinds. So hard that they were, they are, and they will be far beyond us. Because the so-called exploration in science is always produced by the false mind. (This is the root of samsara, we will talk about it later), the falseness continues to arise without respite, without respite means ceaseless. It piles up one after another. If we want to use science to explore the entire universe, the only way is to learn Buddhadharma, return to the light and illumine from within. Meanwhile, these questions are the easiest. So easy that they can be simplified to just one sentence, one word, one dot. A drop of water, a piece of cloud and a grain of dust are of the same body as Buddha, no one is not the other. Only because it is too simple we neglected it and caused all sufferings today.


To solve these questions is the original intention of all Buddhas' manifestation, namely, to enable all beings to acquire a true understanding of our entire surroundings including personnel, social and natural environment. To make it short, Buddhadharma is about science and philosophy, but it is the science beyond science, philosophy beyond philosophy. All in all, it is just about A Truth! A Thus have I heard! An Amitabha! Thus is "A" in Amitabha, have "mi", I "ta" and heard "bha (Bhddha)". Thus have I heard is Amitabha. If you get the meaning of Thus have I heard,everything will be achieved and you won’t achieve if not. Before you understand the reality in One Vehicle Dharma, frankly speaking, except this wonderful dharma all the other innumerable sutras are just Buddha's expedient means, which are neither complete, nor ultimate nor true.


Maybe you have many doubts, please don't worry and listen patiently. Just because it is different from what you've previously heard about dharma, a more dedicated heart being able to ponder is required. Meanwhile, we should firm our confidence and trust ourselves. Without huge merits, you won't be sitting here today learning this best ever Dharma-gate. If you give up halfway, that will be your greatest ever regret and loss. We should treasure such an opportunity.


The practice of these Dharma-gates, which are neither complete, nor ultimate nor true, enables us to acquire blessings of humans or celestial beings or certify Arhat's Nirvana at most. Accumulating blessings is just like shooting an arrow up to the sky, which will fall in the end. So-called Arhat's Nirvana is not real Nirvana and Buddhahood. Nirvana is neither birth nor death. So the Dharma-gates we usually see such as burning incense, worshiping Buddha, praying, chanting, meditating, setting animals free, etc., are not the fundamental purpose of Buddhadharma. While practicing the true dharma, or various names of one concept, like ultimate teaching, one vehicle, reality, perfect teaching or definitive teaching, we will be free from all the worries of birth and death—merit and virtue which will never be exhausted in our many lifetimes. However, for the person who is enlightened, the various good deeds he does including above-mentioned chanting and meditating and so on are all merits and virtues. There is a fundamental difference here.


With what I said, you don't have to worry anymore. Because I resolved to let those non-Buddhists be able to believe Buddha here today, and he can certify that he is enlightened in the moment! You will find yourself in an entire new world and obtain all of a sudden a complete understanding of perfect teaching, some of you may even determine to strive to the end preaching this truth from today. Confucius said: Having heard the Dao in the morning, one can die in the evening. Seeking the truth, practicing the truth and preaching the truth, these are the highest pursuit.



Considering the fact that some of you believe in no Buddhism, and most of you are still in the stage of superstition, so today's teaching will be pided into two steps:

The first step, more like wiping out religious illiteracy, is called "elimination of religious illiteracy on Buddhism," which will help us to have a general idea about the basic of Buddhadharma. The second step, beginning with the essence of Buddhadharma is “Passing through Five Barriers and Enlightening Six Generals to Gain Bodhi."


·Whether There's Afterlife?


Now you are sitting here and listening to the teaching, let me ask you, can you recall your couch or TV at home in the moment? Yes, you can. But can you sit on your couch watching TV right now? No, you cannot. That is to say, your heart and body are relatively independent—your heart can break through the boundary of space, but your body cannot. In that case, will this heart die along with the body? No, it won't.


Now think about the second question. In our life journeys of these several years, a dozen years or decades, there must be some things that make us feel happy or sad. We not only can recall them but still remember every detail with mixed feelings, which proves that the heart can break through the boundary of time to run back to years or several days ago, or years later, but the body doesn't have this ability—can it move back to the lunchtime? No, it cannot. Can it run back to one second ago? It cannot, either. The body has to move towards the future one step after another. Therefore, let me ask you again, will this heart die when the body dies? No, it won't.


Here's the third example to think about. A common saying goes, "Growing old and staying young at heart." Among our audience today, there are men and women, old and young. The youngest is five or six years old and the oldest is more than eighty. You see, while you are aging from young to old, your body is growing from tiny to big. With wrinkles gradually climbing on your face and gray hairs appearing on your head, you get old and clumsy after sixty, right? However, isn't your heart as naive and innocent as a child? We are all old children, right? The fact is, even you are a hundred, million or even billion years old, you would still retain childlike innocence, this is true. Since this heart won't get old, will it die with the body? It won't. You need to clearly understand this point.


Briefly speaking, the heart is relatively independent from the body. Since the heart can break through the restriction of time and space, it never gets old. These three examples, given for a better understanding, are not worthy for us to dwell on too much. To have a thorough grasp of the idea, we must learn the Shurangama Sutra. Since the heart is neither birth nor death, but the body is either birth or death, making itself merely a piece of clothing in the cycle of birth and death.


For those who still doubt about the afterlife, let's have a further discussion —not using mental processes, but the history of a well-known hero in the world. Note that we are here not to judge our predecessors but to prove the principles of Buddhism. This is our original intention which cannot be mixed up.

As we all know, our most beloved Chairman, Mao Tse-tung was born in 1893 and died in 1976 when he was 83 years old. In 1935 after the establishment of Chairman Mao's leadership in Zunyi Conference, whose strategies were implemented in political, economic and military lines? Although the central secretary was Zhang Wentian, but the actual leader was Mao Tse-tung. It was 41 years from 1935 to 1976, right? Chairman Mao lived for 83 years and was in actual power for 41 years, this is the fact. After the founding of our country, Military Commission established Central Security Force. Guess what was its designation? It was Unit 8341. So the code 8341 was created when Chairman Mao still alive rather than after he died. To be exact, the number had already existed in his previous life and came along with his birth—moreover, being in no succession with any other unit designation, this code was unique and independent.


As for the origin of the designation of Unit 8341, it has always been a popular hearsay in the society, and there are a lot of versions about it, which we might as well take as a spare time subject for the moment. Some said the number was given when Chairman Mao was drawing lots in the Fragrant Hills before entering Beijing by an old Taoist priest who didn't decode the specific meaning, so Chairman Mao named his guard troops 8341. Another version is that after the Autumn Harvest Uprising, Chairman Mao had a rifle made by Hanyang Arsenal, whose serial number was 8341. However, according to Zhang Yaoci, the first regimental commander of 8341, this number is just a military serial number given to Central Guards Regiment by the General Staff Headquarters.



Whether the hearsay is true or not, what we know for sure is that the unit designation of this security force was 8341 and it was revoked after Chairman Mao passed away. Let's look at another group of numbers:

Most big events in Mao Tse-tung's life happened on the 9th. September 9th,1927 was the day when he first led an armed struggle—the Autumn Harvest Uprising. It was on September 9th,1935 that he split with Chang Kuo-tao in western Sichuan during the Long March. It was also on September 9th,1949 that he led organs of the Party Central Committee entering Beijing. It was again on September 9th, 1976 that he passed away at the age of 83.


So let's think over these examples, were they destined or sheer coincidence? Were Chairman Mao's New China founded in this life or cultivated from previous lives? Chairman Mao is like this, is there anyone who isn't?! Please note that we are listing the facts in our teaching and it is well founded and can be tested, rather than echoing the views of others. Let me tell you, the purpose of the Buddha's appearance to this world was to tell a truth, Buddha taught the Tripitaka and twelve pisions of Sutras and innumerable Dharma-gates to get there, but those were only skillful means. In this world, nobody will die and death is just the false appearance of the body, while our "true self", that "true mind" won't die.


For example, when I say "All things are one thought" these five words, before being spoken, do they exist? They certainly do and are formless, the formless is our "true mind". So when I say them, are these five words in "All things are one thought" the manifestation of our "true mind" in the moment? Yes, they are. Then after "All things are one thought" were spoken, will the words die away? No, they won't. I could never say them again if they died, right? They will arise whenever I want to say them, and cease when I don't want to. Therefore, do these five words in "All things are one thought" arise and cease? No, they don't. Please illumine with the light of wisdom whether there is birth and death for humans. I often ask this question: "Are there people from the Tang Dynasty and the Qin Dynasty and from the era of Three Emperors and Five Sovereigns here?" That is because throughout infinite thousands of trillion years, nobody has ever died, we are all antiques.


Alright, from the discussion above, I believe most of you have gained a clear understanding of causes and effects in the past, present and future. In the following exploration, we will gradually acquire a better understanding about it. Therefore, whether we will become a human, a ghost, an animal, the president or just common people in our future lives all depends on our deeds in this life. The property, status and fame we got in this life are what we cultivated in previous lives. It is the same as farming—we plant in spring and harvest in autumn. If you deeply believe in karma, your worldview has changed, and so have your values and outlook on life.(By: Master Yin Guang)