Lofty Peaks In Little Sayings

Quotes by Venerable Master Hsuan Hua

1) When you seek nothing, you find happiness. Your nature will be steady, you will be at peace.

2) Wishing to climb high, we start low. Wishing to go far, we begin with what is near.

3) Parents are living Buddhas right in your home, so do not neglect what is near to seek afar.

4) Everything is made from the mind. If your mind is not true, even the true becomes false. If your mind is true, then even the false can change. A great response can happen.

5) If we do not look within ourselves to find our own mind, then we will miss the chance to see things clearly.

6) For the sake of momentary pleasure, we may do things that we will regret for the rest of our lives. There is an old saying: "Content with what we have, we are always glad. Being patient with what comes, peace is always with us." How true that is!

7) Be patient for a second. Let the wind and waves die down. Step back and reflect on how the sea is vast and the sky profound.

8) We should not try to solve problems by using force. We should use a peaceful method.

9) The computer, the electronic brain, cannot beat the spiritual brain. Our spiritual brain does not run on electricity, it runs on wisdom.

10) Life is not money. It is a priceless treasure that cannot be bought with money.

11) Even if you are truly talented, you do not have to show off.

12) Be gentle and agreeable. Avoid a hot temper. Do not be frightened under any circumstances.

13) First of all, we should work on not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantage, and not lying. These principles are very simple. We should start from what is simple, moving from near to far, and from shallow to deep.

14) You cannot just get angry when you feel like it, you cannot think,"This is wrong. That is not right." Do not be so negative. Things are not always going to go your way, so take a step back and think, "Patience! Patience! Got to have Patience!" Then things will turn out fine.

15) The effect fits the cause. Do good and good will come to you. Do evil and you will get evil back. This is natural law. Create a perfect result and get a perfect result. Plant a haphazard cause and get a haphazard effect. Be clear about this. Do not let it go in one ear and out the other.

16) Do not fight. If we do not fight with people, then people will not fight with us. Even if people do fight with me, I will not fight back. if we can be like that, then disputes would just not happen.

17) You must devote your heart and mind to cultivating and to learning the truth. Do not skim on the surface of things or "try to scrath an itch from the outside of your boot."

18) Whatever is in our minds will also exist outside. If there are no wars going on in our minds, there will be no wars outside.

19) Why should people conceal their light? We can use the analogy of a candle. A candle can give off light, but if we keep it lit all the time, it will soon burn down. If we light it only in times of need, the candle could last a long time. The same is true of the light of people's wisdom.

20) If you are not influenced by states when you are moving, then your movement is the same as stillness. If you are not disturbed by idle thoughts when you are still, then your stillness is just like movement. If you can cultivate to the point where movement and stillness are the same, then your skill is mature and there is neither movement nor stillness, neither emptiness nor existence. That is the middle way.

21) Why is the world in such trouble? It is because of fighting. People have let their tiger-like tempers and fiery ignorance get the best of them. People fight with each other, families feud with families, and on a greater scale, nations battle with nations. Such fighting will surely be the end of us. But even when we die, we still will not have realised what happened.

22) Holding the precepts means watching for and correcting your own mistakes at all times. It does not mean minding others' mistakes and not doing anything to correct your own. That would be like doing other people's dirty laundry.

23) What is the Way? It is just the truth. The truth is such that no one can overturn it. The truth is absolute, not relative. There is only one truth, not two.
The way is common to all true cultivators. It can be explained in Confucianism, in Taoism, and in Buddhism as well. The Way is the Truth, and any religion can teach it.

24) When the Buddha became enlightened, he exclaimed in surprise at what he had discovered, "How strange! How strange! All living beings have the Buddha nature."

25) The Book of Changes says,"One yin and one yang are called the Way. An excessive inclination to either yin or yang is called sickness." When there is day, there is night; when there is goodness, there is evil; when there is rebelliousness, there is filiality; when there is heaven, there is earth. These are normal phenomena. This is the principle of the relativity of the myraid things.

26) The 8 virtues are: filiality, fraternal respect, loyalty, trustworthiness, propriety, righteousness, incorruptibility, and a sense of shame. We should take these 8 virtues as guidelines for human conduct.
27) If you have virtue, your temper will disappear and ignorance will be transformed into wisdom. Therefore, we should develop virtue when we cultivate.

If you plant beans, you will get beans. If you plant melons, you will get melons. If you plant wheat, you will harvest wheat. If you plant rice, you will reap rice. This principle never fails. If you do muddled things, you just end up cheating yourself; you really cannot cheat anyone else.

29) You can fool others, but you cannot fool yourself.

Adopt Maitreya Bodhisattva's attitude of "Patience, patience, patience!" Then people will spontaneously bury the hatchet and work for peace: it will be like the blue sky after a rainstorm, with the wind and waves subsiding.

A cultivator should always have a heart of kindness, compassion, joy, and renunciation whether internally or externally, and treat people equally whether they are young, old, honorable or humble. There will naturally be a response.

32) Through cultivating the Way, you can increase your wisdom, your resolve for Bodhi, the power of your vows, and everything else.

33) Everyone can look into this. If what I said is correct, you may take it into consideration. Otherwise, you may just ignore it.

The good and wise advisor's teaching is like a full moon, in that it refreshes and cools everything it shines on.
The good and wise advisor's teaching is like a spring sun, in that it produces and makes grow the roots and sprouts of all good Dharmas.
The good and wise advisor's teaching is like a snow mountain in summer, in that it can dispel the heat and thirst of all beasts.
The good and wise advisor's teaching is like the sun on the fragrant pool, in that it can open the lotus flower of the mind of all goodness.
(Flower Adornment Sutra)