05 March 2012

Contemplation: Four Inverted Views, 5

After reviewing the guidelines for practice, take the following as your object of contemplation:

Virtuous man, what is the sign of sentient beings? It is the experience which is beyond self-awakening and it is that which is awakened to in the minds of sentient beings. Virtuous man, if for example a man sans, 'I am a sentient being,' we know that what he speaks of as 'sentient being' refers neither to himself nor to another person [only]. Why is he not referring to his self? Since this self is sentient being, it is not limited to his self. Since this self is sentient being, therefore it is not another person's self. Virtuous man, the experiences and awakenings of sentient beings are all [traces of] the self and the person. In the awakening beyond the traces of the self and person, if one retained the awareness of having realized something, it would be called the sign of sentient beings.
From The Sutra of Complete Enlightenment, p. 51

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