The Vessel of Dhoe


A living being's body is a vessel, the world is a vessel, and the universe is also a vessel -- this truth is revealed repeatedly in many Scriptures:


The Kabbalah Unveiled, Introduction says:
    Light personifies itself by veiling itself, and the personification is only stable when the veil is perfect.

Mahayana Mahaparinirvana Sutra ( Taisho Tripitaka 0374, 0375 ) says:
    With the 100 virtues perfected, a phase is accomplished. Thus do things proceed one after the other, and the 32 bodily signs of perfection are attained. When all this is accomplished, we say "pure body".

    "Also, the Bodhisattva practises the way of the 80 minor marks of excellence......For the sake of all beings, he practises the ways of the 80 characteristics and adorns his own body. This is the pure body of the Bodhisattva. Why so? Because all these 80 gods are what all beings greatly trust in. That is why the Bodhisattva practises the ways of these 80 characteristics, and his body does not suffer change. He so contrives matters that all beings see him, each according to what that being believes in. Having seen thus, they gain respect, and each aspires to unsurpassed Enlightenment. For this reason, the Bodhisattva-mahasattva practises the way of the pure body.

    O good man! For example, there is a man who wishes to invite a great King to his home. He will doubtless adorn his own abode, make it extremely clean, and have 100 varieties of beautiful dishes prepared, and then the King will accept the invitation. It is the same with the Bodhisattva-mahasattva. When he wishes to invite the Dharma-King of unsurpassed Enlightenment, he first practises the Way and cleanses and purifies his body, and the unsurpassed Dharma-King will then dwell in. Thus the Bodhisattva-mahasattva must first make his own body clean and pure.

    "O good man! For example, if one desires to partake of amrta [ambrosia], know that one will makes one's body clean. It is the same with the Bodhisattva-mahasattva. When he deisres to partake of prajna, the unsurpassed taste of the amrta of Dharma, he needs to make his body clean with the 80 minor marks of excellence.

    "O good man! For example, if one puts water into a precious vessel of gold or silver, all will look pure and clean, in and out. It is the same with the Bodhisattva-mahasattva whose body is pure. Within and without, he is clean, because the water of unsurpassed Enlightenment has been poured inside him.

    "O good man! It is just as the white cloth of varanabusa is easy to dye. Why so? Because it is, by nature, white and clean. The same with the Bodhisattva-mahasattva. When his body is pure and clean, he gains unsurpassed Enlightenment. For this reason, the Bodhisattva-mahasattva practises the Way and makes his body clean.

    [The Original Chinese Text]

Mahayana Mahaparinirvana Sutra says:
    The Tathagata-World-Honoured One is the unsurpassed vessel of Dharma. A vessel of the world can be non-eternal, but not that of the Tathagata.

    [The Original Chinese Text]

Mahayana Mahaparinirvana Sutra says:
    The Buddha said: "Virtuous man, A container holds within itself various seeds. When water and rain come, each shoots forth buds. It is the same with living beings, although their vessels are of the same kind, due to the causal relations of craving, various kinds of illusion come about."

    [The Original Chinese Text]

The Zohar - V1BA. S12 says:
    The complete and all-embracing Light proceeds into our world through three stages. These three stages comprise the Right, Left, and Central Columns of spiritual energy. [See "Let there be a Firmament" page 253. The three stages express themselves through the spiritual vessels of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. In the first phase, the Light is unknowable and too unimaginably luminous for any single vessel to contain. The second phase produces a diminishing of the Light, and the third phase brings a final diminution, achieving a suitable level of Light for all vessels to safely receive. The Hebrew letters composing this section bring the appropriate measure of Light to the areas of our lives where it is most needed.

Emerald-Emptiness Treatise says:
    The place that produces It is called river, source, mountain, ocean, and so forth. The vessel in which It is refined is called altar, cookstove, Ding (three-legged cauldron), oven, and so forth.

    [The Original Chinese Text]

The Four Hundred Words On Golden Dhaan says:
    The Heart is KIN, and the body is KWUN, therefore they are called Ding (three-legged cauldron) and vessel of KIN and KWUN.

    [The Original Chinese Text]

Mahayana Mahaparinirvana Sutra says:
    O good man! For example, a tile that has not yet been passed through heat is easy to break. It is the same with the physical body of a being, too. Gaining the body, this is now a vessel of suffering.

    [The Original Chinese Text]

The Zohar - V1P. S5 says:
    When our own vessels are not worthy or capable of generating Light on their own, the spiritual forces transmitted through the letters of this story give us the ability to actually draw down vessels from the Upper Worlds.

Avatamsaka Sutra, Book 26 says:
    At that time, all Buddhas of the ten directions will emit from their glabellas (the location between the eyebrows) pure rays of light, which are called The Supernatural Power That Enhances The Universal Wisdom. These rays of light, together with countless accompanying lights, will universally illuminate all worlds of the ten directions, circulate them clockwise ten times, reveal the immense omnipotence of the Tathagatas, enlighten innumerable hundreds of thousands of billions of nayutas of Bodhisattvas, universally shake all Buddha-Worlds, eliminate all evil paths' sufferings, block out all demons' palaces, show all the places in which the Buddhas achieve Bodhi, and show the congregations, sublimities, and majesties of those Bodhimandas.

    In such a way, having filled the whole universe, permeated the whole Dharma-Realm, and illuminated all the worlds, these lights will come to this Bodhisattva Congregation, circulate it clockwise, and manifest myriad sublime things. Having done these, these lights will enter the great Bodhisattva's body through the summit of his head, and their accompanying lights will enter into those accompanying Bodhisattvas' heads. At that time, this Bodhisattva will gain millions of Samadhis that he has never gained before, and then it is known that he Has Gained The Conferment, Has Entered the Buddhas' Realm, Has All The Ten Powers, and Is Counted As A Buddha.

    (......)

    For example, with the only exception of the great ocean, a great rain showered by the dragon king Sagara, can not be placed, accepted, contained, or kept within any place. Likewise, with the only exception of the Bodhisattvas of the tenth stage, the Thus Come Ones' secret treasury --- the great Dharma light, the great Dharma illumination, and the great Dharma rain, can not be placed, accepted, contained, or kept within any living being even if he is a Voice Hearer, Solitary Awakener (pratyeka-buddha), or a Bodhisattva of the ninth stage.

    Child of the Buddha, for example, the great ocean can embrace, accept, contain, and keep a great rain showered by one great dragon king; moreover, if two, three, or even countless dragon kings, within a moment as short as a flash thought, shower down countless rains simultaneously, the great ocean can also embrace, accept, contain, and keep them. Why? Because it is a boundless and vast vessel. Likewise, a Bodhisattva dwelling in Dharma Cloud stage, can embrace, accept, contain, and keep one Buddha's Dharma light, Dharma illumination, and Dharma rain; furthermore, if two, three, or even countless Buddhas preach simultaneously within a moment as short as a flash thought, this Bodhisattva can also accept them. Therefore, this stage is called Dharma Cloud.

    [The Original Chinese Text]

The Zohar - V1BA. S2 says:
    When God created the world, He knew that we, the vessels, could not receive His awesome, blazing Light in Its totality. This Kabbalistic notion can be likened to a tripped circuit breaker caused by an overload of electric current. It can also be compared to the light of sun, which would incinerate the entire earth if it were to ever approach too close. The Creator, in His infinite wisdom, therefore concealed the greater portion of His Light so as not to overwhelm that which He created. The Zohar recounts the process of how this hidden Light began to be revealed.

    As we correct and transform our crude, immoral nature, we reveal a measure of hidden Light in direct proportion to the degree of inner change we've undergone. It is this spiritual change that expands our internal vessel, allowing us to receive a greater portion of hidden Light......

Wonderful Dharma Lotus Sutra, Chapter Five says:
    Issuing from that cloud
    Water of a single flavor
    Moistens grasses, trees and forests
    Each according to its measure

    All of the trees,
    Great, medium and small,
    According to their size
    Can grow and develop.
    When reached by that single rain
    The roots, stalks, branches, and leaves,
    Flowers and fruits with luster and color,
    All are fresh and shining.

    According to their substance and marks,
    And natures, either great or small
    They alike receive moisture
    And each one flourishes.

    The Buddha, in the same way
    Manifests within the world
    Just like a great cloud
    Covering over everything.
    Having come into the world
    For the sake of living beings,
    He discriminates and expounds
    The reality of all Dharmas.

    [The Original Chinese Text]

The Bible says:
    But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. (II Timothy 2:20 KJV)

    If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work. (II Timothy 2:21 KJV)

    Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. (II Timothy 2:22 KJV)

The Treatise on Awakening to the Real says:
    Set up the strove and the Ding to emulate the evolution of KIN and KWUN,
    Cook and refine the Essence and restrain the Pug and Whun;
    It will converge and scatter,
    producing a heavy atmosphere of spiritual emanation,
    and finally achieve the transformation.
    Then you will dare to discuss the occult miracles as if they are ordinary things.

    [The Original Chinese Text]

Mahayana Mahaparinirvana Sutra says:
    "O good man! It is as with three vessels. The first is perfect, the second leaks, and the third is broken. When one wishes to put milk, cream or butter into them, which one would one use first?"

    "O World-Honoured One! We would use the one which is perfect; next, the one that leaks, and then the broken one."

    "The perfect and pure one is comparable to the Bodhisattva-priest; the one that leaks to the sravaka, and the one that is broken to the icchantika.

    [The Original Chinese Text]

The Bible says:
    For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: (I Thessalonians 4:3 KJV)

    That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; (I Thessalonians 4:4 KJV)

    But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel (Acts 9:15 KJV)

    For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6 KJV)

    But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. (2 Corinthians 4:7 KJV)





The Original Chinese Texts:

大般涅槃經》云:
具足百福成於一相。如是展轉具足成就三十二相。名清淨身。所以復修八十種好。世有眾生事八十神。......為此眾生修八十好以自莊嚴。是名菩薩清淨之身。何以故。是八十天一切眾生之所信伏。是故菩薩修八十好其身不動。令彼眾生隨其所信各各得見。見已宗敬各發阿耨多羅三藐三菩提心。以是義故。菩薩摩訶薩修於淨身。善男子。譬如有人欲請大王。要當莊嚴所有捨宅極令清淨。辦具種種百味餚膳。然後王乃就其所請。菩薩摩訶薩亦復如是。欲請阿耨多羅三藐三菩提法輪王故。先當修身極令清淨。無上法王乃當處之。以是義故。菩薩摩訶薩要當修於清淨之身。善男子。譬如有人欲服甘露先當淨身。菩薩摩訶薩亦復如是。欲服無上甘露法味般若波羅蜜。要當先以八十種好清淨其身。善男子。譬如妙好金銀寶器盛之淨水中表俱淨。菩薩摩訶薩其身清淨亦復如是。盛阿耨多羅三藐三菩提水中表俱淨。善男子。如波羅捺素白之衣易受染色何以故。性白淨故。菩薩摩訶薩亦復如是。以身淨故疾得阿耨多羅三藐三菩提。以是義故。菩薩摩訶薩修於淨身。

大般涅槃經》云:
如來世尊無上法器。而器無常非如來也。

大般涅槃經》云:
佛言。善男子。如一器中有種種子。得水雨已各各自生。眾生亦爾。器雖是一。愛因緣故而能生長種種煩惱。

翠虛篇》云:
所產之處曰川、源、山、海,所煉之器曰壇、爐、鼎、灶

金丹四百字》云:
心屬乾,身屬坤,故曰乾坤鼎器

大般涅槃經》云:
善男子。譬如坏器即易破壞。眾生受身亦復如是。既受身已是眾苦器。

大方廣佛華嚴經》云:
爾時,十方一切諸佛從眉間出清淨光明,名:增益一切智神通,無數光明以為眷屬,普照十方一切世界,右繞十匝,示現如來廣大自在,開悟無量百千億那由他諸菩薩眾,週徧震動一切佛剎,滅除一切諸惡道苦,隱蔽一切諸魔宮殿,示一切佛得菩提處道場眾會莊嚴威德;如是普照盡虛空徧法界一切世界已,而來至此菩薩會上週匝右繞,示現種種莊嚴之事;現是事已,從大菩薩頂上而入,其眷屬光明亦各入彼諸菩薩頂。當爾之時,此菩薩得先所未得百萬三昧,名為:已得受職之位,入佛境界,具足十力,墮在佛數。

大方廣佛華嚴經》云:
譬如娑伽羅龍王所澍大雨,唯除大海,餘一切處皆不能安、不能受、不能攝、不能持。如來秘密藏大法明、大法照、大法雨亦復如是,唯除第十地菩薩,餘一切眾生、聲聞、獨覺乃至第九地菩薩,皆不能安、不能受、不能攝、不能持。佛子!譬如大海,能安、能受、能攝、能持一大龍王所澍大雨;若二、若三乃至無量諸龍王雨,於一念間一時澍下,皆能安、能受、能攝、能持。何以故?以是無量廣大器故。住法雲地菩薩亦復如是,能安、能受、能攝、能持一佛法明、法照、法雨;若二、若三乃至無量,於一念頃一時演說,悉亦如是。是故此地名為:法雲。

妙法蓮華經.藥草喻品第五》云:
其雲所出,一味之水,草木叢林,隨分受潤。
一切諸樹,上中下等,稱其大小,各得生長,
根莖枝葉,華果光色,一雨所及,皆得鮮澤。
如其體相,性分大小,所潤是一,而各滋茂。
佛亦如是,出現於世,譬如大雲,普覆一切。
既出於世,為諸眾生,分別演說,諸法之實。

悟真篇》云:
安爐立鼎法乾坤,鍛煉精華制魄魂;聚散氤氳成變化,敢將玄妙等閑論。

大般涅槃經》云:
善男子。譬如三器。一者完。二者漏。三者破。若欲盛置乳酪酥水。先用何者。世尊。應用完者、次用漏者、後及破者。其完淨者喻菩薩僧。漏喻聲聞。破喻一闡提。
 

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