Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra

by Gelongma Karma Migme Chödrön | 2001 | 940,961 words

This page describes “mind of false wisdom (mithyadharma)” 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.

VI. Mind of false wisdom (mithyādharma)

The mind of a silly person (mūḍha) cannot attain success or setbacks[1] or, a fortiori, subtle (sūkṣma) and profound (gambhīra) notions. A man deprived of sight [304b] falls into the ditch or takes wrong paths; it is the same for the man deprived of knowledge; without the eye of wisdom (prajñācakṣus), he adopts (abhiniviśate) wrong doctrines (mithyādharma) and does not welcome the right view (samyagdṛṣṭi). Such a man has no success in the worldly things near him (samīpe); how could he have it in supreme perfect enlightenment?

By practicing the perfection of wisdom, the bodhisattva can counteract the six opposing [vices][2] (ṣaḍvipakṣa) and purify (pariśodhayati) the six perfections (pāramitā). This is why the Prajñāpāramitāsūtra says here that the bodhisattva who does not want to produce the six opposing [vices] should practice the perfection of wisdom.

Footnotes and references:


The silly person is incapable of appreciating the banalities of the present life.


The characters lieou pi used here by Kumārajīva certainly correspond to Śaḍvipakṣa: cf. Mahāyānasūtrālaṃkāra, p. 164, l.17, to its Chinese version in T 1604, k. 12, p. 651c4. This concordance has been shown by G. M. Nagao in his Index to the Mahāyāna-Sūtrālaṃkāra, I, p. 221, l. 21.

The ṣaḍvipakṣas are the six evil minds, avarice, etc., opposing the six pāramitās: see also Sūtrālaṃkāra, p. 166, l. 1–2; Saṃgrahopanibandhana, T 1598, k. 7, p. 422b19–21; Abhidharmasamuccayavyākhyā, T 1606, k. 12, p. 750a25–28. Other references in H. Nakamura, Bukkyōgo Daijiten, III, p. 1450c–d.