(Venerable Master Miu King)
(01) As a matter of fact, monastic and all Buddhists should always maintain a peaceful mind and not be affected by likes and dislikes.
(02) What shall we do when we encounter difficulties while learning the teachings of Buddhism? We can ask for clarity from virtuous counselor or study reference literature. Another way is to practice meditation. When our mind is still, Buddhist doctrine are easier to understand. Therefore, meditation helps one learn Buddhist doctrine. Reciprocally, learning Buddhist doctrine will help the practice of meditation.
(03) The cultivation of the Dharma is the practice of Samatha (serenity) and Vipassana (insight). Accordingly, one will be able to make progress after practicing long enough and have the success of enlightenment.
(04) The Dharma that we have learned speaks of ultimate truth and the worldly truth. However, when we try to practice Samatha (serenity) and Vipassana (insight), we may be unable to contemplate the Dharma smoothly. Where is the problem? It is due to our insufficient practice of learning and reflecting, and lack of the Right Views. This makes it evident that we have not studied enough. If you can thoroughly and deeply study the Dharma and understand its meanings, you should be able to contemplate the Dharma accordingly. Study sutras and treatises waveringly and focus on reflecting. Start from the wisdom of learning, then to the wisdom of reflecting, then finally to the wisdom of cultivating. Now, you have the ability to practice not only Samatha (serenity) but also Vipassana (insight) and attain the wisdom of the Dharma.
(05) The Dharma is the teachings of the noble beings including the Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, and Arhats. It can be regarded as a track to keep one to stay on the right path. For example, a train will be safe if it runs on the track. On the other hand, it will not be safe if it runs off the track. The teachings of the noble beings serve as the track for us to follow. It will be safe for ordinary beings who are willing to follow and practice the teachings – from the cause of happiness to the effects of happiness. It will not be safe if one considers the teachings of the noble beings as frivolous and one does not want to learn. It is a serious problem if you consider yourself a Buddhist, but you are not willing to learn the teachings of the noble beings.
(06) In the Dharma it says, “To develop faith.” Faith is established based on wisdom. If you fully understand the Dharma and capture the wisdom mind, you will then believe in the true meaning of the Dharma. It should not be the case that I believe in the Dharma only because my good friend asks me to do so. The faith won’t last long if that is the case. Therefore, you will have stronger faith and better understanding only if you are able to develop wisdom. You will then be able to contemplate all the worldly rationale and conclude, “The Dharma is right; it is the ultimate truth”. You will then have faith and understanding of the Dharma teachings.
(07) The Mahayana Samgraha Sastra expounds the teaching of the “Consciousness-only and without true meaning” school. It teaches that all phenomenal existence is fabricated by consciousness and is, therefore, without intrinsic nature. This is also called the illusory nature of all phenomena and helps us to realize that it is a big misunderstanding to attach to any objects since they only exist as part of our awareness in greed, anger, and ignorance. Since all phenomenal existence is illusory in nature, why do we let greed, anger and ignorance arise in our mind?
(08) How can one study the Dharma? The three approaches are learning, reflecting and cultivating.
(09) Cultivation is a matter of dedicated self-effort, even though one has been taught one thousand or ten thousand times.
(10) According to the Dharma, flawless precepts, flawless meditative concentration, and flawless wisdom are the moral codes. We need determined efforts to understand these three aspects.