(Buddha to his disciple Shariputra, from the Lotus Sutra, Chapter 2 ‘Skillful Means.’ Note: Skillful means – upaya in Buddhist parlance – is an important concept in Buddhism, as the various teachings & techniques therein can be seen as skilful means to awaken to true nature & realize nirvana.)
Saturday, June 7, 2014
Buddha on Skillful Means
“O Shariputra! The real intention of all the buddhas in adapting their explanations to what is appropriate is difficult to understand. Why is this? It is because I have expounded the teachings with innumerable skillful means and various kinds of explanations and illustrations. Yet this Dharma is beyond reason and discernment. Only the buddhas can understand it. Why is this? It is because the blessed buddhas appear in this world for one great purpose alone. O Shariputra! Now I will explain why I said that the blessed buddhas appear in this world for only one great purpose.
“The blessed buddhas appear
in this world to cause sentient beings to aspire toward purity and the wisdom
and insight of the buddhas. They appear in this world to manifest the wisdom
and insight of the buddhas to sentient beings. They appear in this world to
cause sentient beings to attain the wisdom and insight of a buddha’s enlightenment.
They appear in this world in order to cause sentient beings to enter the path
of the wisdom and insight of a buddha.
“O Shariputra! For this
one great reason alone the buddhas have appeared in this world.”