Excerpts

[33] The Parable Of Cutting The Tree To Obtain Its Fruits From The Sūtra Of A Hundred Parables《百喻经》之斫树取果喻

昔有国王,有一好树高广极大,当生胜果香而甜美。

In the past, there was a country’s King, who had a beautiful tree that was tall, wide and extremely big, that will grow supreme fruits that are fragrant and sweet.

时有一人来至王所,王语之言:「此之树上将生美果,汝能食不?」

Then, there was a person who came and arrived at the King’s place. The King spoke to him, saying, ‘On this tree above, that will grow sweet fruits, are you able to eat them or not?’

即答王言:「此树高广,虽欲食之何由能得?」

Then replying to the King, saying, ‘This tree is tall and wide, although desiring to eat them, with what cause am I able to get them?

即便断树望得其果,既无所获徒自劳苦,后还欲竖,树已枯死都无生理。

Immediately cutting the tree, hoping to get its fruits. Thereupon, without those obtained, in vain toiling with suffering, later still desiring it to be erect, with the tree already withered and dead, it was already without growth’s principle.

世间之人亦复如是,如来法王有持戒树能生胜果,心生愿乐欲得果食,应当持戒修诸功德,不解方便,返毁其禁,如彼伐树,复欲还活都不可得,破戒之人亦复如是。

People of the world are likewise thus. The Thus Come One, the Dharma King has upholding of precepts’ tree, that is able to grow supreme fruits. With their minds giving rise to the wish for bliss, desiring to get the fruits to eat them, they should uphold the precepts’ all meritorious virtues. Not understanding this skilful means, instead destroying their prohibitions, like that cutting down of the tree, again desiring it to still live, all these cannot be attained. Of people breaking the precepts, they are likewise thus.

[Note 1: There should be proper understanding of the need to first plant (and grow) the cause (因) of guarding the precepts (守戒) well, before reaping their fruits (i.e. 果: effects) of bliss naturally. Those with inverted (颠倒) thinking, craving for bliss, quickly break the precepts instead, assuming they can attain bliss directly.

True bliss cannot be attained with the breaking of precepts. Any other so-called ‘bliss’ experienced with broken precepts is immoral, karmically leading to suffering eventually. There might be those who pretend to observe the precepts outwardly, while breaking them secretly, thus not personally having profound faith in cause and effect (深信因果), even as they hypocritically teach others to believe in the law of karma.]

[Note 2: When there is a precept broken, there should immediately be the 3R’s – sincere Repentance (忏悔) for the precept broken, Resolution to not break it again, and ‘Revival’ of the precept, by not letting it remain ‘dead’, and by not ‘killing’ the other precepts. Instead, there should be better observation of all precepts after. (True Repentance should already include Resolution and Revival as above, but they are at times forgotten.)]

全百喻
All Hundred Parables:

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Please Be Mindful Of Your Speech, Namo Amituofo!

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