Verses on the Perfection of Wisdom

Prajñāpāramitā Ratnaguṇasaṃcayagāthā

14,137 words

Prajnaparamita Ratnagunasamcayagatha Translated by Edward Conze (Taisho Tripitaka 0229)...

Chapter XXII

The Good Friends and the Perfections

Therefore then the learned who has slain pride,
Who seeks with weighty resolution for the best enlightenment,
Should, as one attends upon a physician to be cured of a multitude of ailments,
Attend upon the good friend, undaunted.

The Buddhas, the Bodhisattvas who have set out for the best enlightenment,
And [those who have] these perfections have been enumerated as 'the good friends.'
It is they who instruct them [i.e. the Bodhisattvas] in these progressive stages,
For a double reason they [quickly] understand the Buddha-enlightenment.

The past and future Jinas, and those who stand [just now] in all the ten directions,
They all [have] this perfection for their path, and no other.
As a splendid illumination, as a torch, as a light, as the Teacher
Have these perfections been described to those who have set out for the best enlightenment.

As he cognizes the perfection of wisdom through the mark of emptiness,
So by the same mark he cognizes all these dharmas;
When he wisely knows dharmas as empty, as without marks,
In coursing thus he courses in the wisdom of the Sugatas.

Defilement and Purification

In want of food, indulging in imagination, beings
Always wander about in birth-and-death, their minds attached.
Both I and Mine as dharmas are unreal and empty.
By his own self has the fool become entangled in space.

As someone who suspects that he has been poisoned
May well be struck down, although no poison has got into his stomach;
Just so the fool who has admitted into himself [the notions of] I and Mine
Is forced by that quite unreal notion of an I to undergo birth and death again and again.

Where one takes notice, there is defilement, so it has been revealed;
The non-apprehension of I and Mine has been called purification.
But there is herein no one who is defiled or who is cleansed.
Then the Bodhisattva has understood the perfection of wisdom.

The Supreme Merit of Perfect Wisdom

If as many beings as there are here in the entire Jambudvipa
Would all, having aspired for the foremost enlightenment,
And having given gifts for many thousands of kotis of years
Dedicate it all to the enlightenment linked to the weal of the world;

But if someone else, practised in wisdom, the foremost perfection,
Would for even one single day comply with it:
An infinitesimal merit would here that heap of giving bring.
Therefore the undaunted should always plunge into wisdom.

Compassion and Perfect Wisdom

When the Yogin courses in wisdom, the best of perfections,
He engenders the great compassion, but no notion of a being.
Then the wise becomes worthy of the offerings of the whole world,
He never fruitlessly consumes the alms of the realm.

The Bodhisattva who wishes to set free the gods and men,
Bound for so long, and the beings in the three places of woe,
And to manifest to the world of beings the broad path to the other shore,
Should be devoted to the perfection of wisdom by day and by night.

The Simile of the Pearl of Great Price

A man who had gained at some time a very fine jewel
Which he had not got before, would be contented.
If, as soon as he had gained it, he would lose it again through carelessness,
He would be sorry and constantly hankering after the jewel.

Just so the Yogin who has set out for the best enlightenment
Should not get parted from the perfection of wisdom, which is comparable to a jewel,
Seizing the jewel which he has gained, with growing energy
He moves forward, and swiftly he comes to the [state of] Bliss.

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