by Gelongma Karma Migme Chödrön | 2001 | 941,039 words
This page describes “altruism in the practice of the faculties (indriya)” as written by Nagarjuna in his Maha-prajnaparamita-sastra (lit. “the treatise on the great virtue of wisdom”) in the 2nd century. This book, written in five volumes, represents an encyclopedia on Buddhism as well as a commentary on the Pancavimsatisahasrika Prajnaparamita.
The bodhisattva in possession of the five faculties understands well (prajānāti) the various faculties of beings.
He understands the faculties of guilty (sāpattika) or faultless (anāpattika) beings, rebellious or docile.
He understands the faculties of beings of coarse (sthūla) or fine (sūkṣma) roots of good (kuśaladharma).
He understands the faculties of miserly (matsarin) or generous (tyāgavat) people, respectful people or disrepectful people, people of pure morality (viśuddhaśīla) or of impure morality (aviśuddhaśīla), angry (vyāpanna) or patient (kṣamin) people, energetic (vīryavat) or lazy (kusīda) people, people of distracted mind (vikṣiptacitta) or of concentrated mind (samgṛhītacitta), stupid people (mūḍhā) or wise people (prajñāvat), fearless (nirbhāya) or fearful (sabhaya) people, prideful people (abhimānika) or people without pride (nirabhimāna), people of right conduct (samyakpratipanna) or of wrong conduct (mithyāpratipanna), controlling their senses (guptendriya) or not controlling their senses.
Footnotes and references:
Common canonical locutions: cf. Majjhima, I, p. 59.
These are the three categories of beings (sattvarāśi): 1) samyaktvaniyatarāśi, those who have entered onto the Path and will quickly reach nirvāṇa; 2) mithyāniyatarāśi, those who, having committed grave sins, will definitely go to the bad destinies and who, coming out of these bad destinies, will go into the third rāśi; 3) aniyatarāśi, those who do not belong to either the first or the second rāśi and may enter either the first or the second.
These three rāśi are mentioned in Dīgha, III, p. 217; Tseng yi a han, T 125, k. 13, p. 614b24; k. 27, p. 698c; Kathāvatthu, II, p. 611; Dhammasaṅgani, p. 186; Nettippakaraṇa, p. 96; Mahāvastu, III, p. 318; Lalitavistara, p. 5400; Pañcaviṃśati, T 223, k. 23, p. 384a26–27.
According to the Sukhāvativyūha, p. 44, the last two rāśi are absent in Amitābha’s paradise.
In the later sources, the system of the rāśi is mixed with that of the gotras ‘race, family’; certain eternal or acquired mental dispositions that cause a person to obtain nirvāṇa: on this subject, see Vimalakīrti, appendix, p. 425–430.
On the ‘burden’, see above, p. 215–216F.