「智悲圆融印」之说明

林钰堂


佛法源于智悲圆融之佛果,导凡俗以智悲齐彰之修行,而汇归于智悲不二之法界。

圆印表法界;智悲充遍法界,无有界限。

智悲相辅相成,故字形配合如两仪之于太极。字形之尖稍如发端,圆头如趋势乃象征:智生于悲,而融于悲,故解脱之究竟在于渡众;悲发乎智,而达于智,故慈悲之极致自然无着。

智、无相而隐,以阴文表之,又合密法以佛母表智慧;悲、有为方彰,以阳文显之,又合密法以佛父表方便。字形之轮廓及颜色,正好象征红白菩提贴切吻合。(参阅〈金刚法印之说明〉)

智字上方大,表以智导悲;悲字下方大(恰为「大心」),表以悲殿智。智字下方小,表「真智如日而隐微」,一般不易悟入;悲字上方小,表「大悲离非而归空」,实修方达纯真。

智悲二字皆为流线形,其趋势(圆端之走向)依佛法采右旋,象征圆转交融,生生不息;二而一,一而二;随缘化现,离缘绝照,本自如如!

我得此印之灵感,写信告诉在台北之祥耀居士,请他刻之。他历经月余,草数十稿,刻第三次才告成;由农历八月八日下刀,至中秋佳节圆满。本文初稿我在美国亦是中秋佳节草就。此种冥应巧合,亦是智悲圆融之佳兆。

在他邮寄这枚印给我之时,也来函述及他在中秋节清晨梦到一位年轻男士送他一串水晶念珠,念珠是放置在以红色为主色的无盖锦盒中。我释此梦如下:红色表慈心,锦盒无盖表无遮开示。水晶念珠是密法四臂白观音所持,表慈悲运用;一颗颗水晶圆珠表众生本具圆明空性智慧;因此水晶念珠即是智悲圆融之表征。更深一层,念珠在观音手中是运用不息的,表示智悲圆融非死寂,而是运转无碍,随机变显的。

智不含悲非真智;悲而离智乃伪悲。必也智不离悲,悲中含智;智悲不二方是真智大悲。智悲原本不二;愿有缘见此印者咸证本具智悲不二!

                     
                     一九九三年万圣节 
                     于美国 加州寓所



Significance of the Union of Wisdom and Compassion Seal



Significance of the Union of Wisdom and Compassion Seal

Significance of the Union of Wisdom and Compassion Seal



Significance of the Union of Wisdom and Compassion Seal

Yutang Lin


Buddhist teachings flow from the fruits of Buddhahood that is Wisdom and Compassion in harmonious union, guide worldly people through practices that exemplify both Wisdom and Compassion, and lead them back to the Dharmadhatu that is Wisdom and Compassion in non-duality.

The circular shape of the seal signifies the Dharmadhatu; Wisdom and Compassion imbue the Dharmadhatu without boundaries.

Wisdom and Compassion mutually support and complement each other; therefore, the shapes of the characters complement each other in the fashion of the Yin and Yang of Tai Ji. Sharp ends of the characters are like the initial starting points, while their rounded heads are like their tendencies, and thus they signify that: Wisdom is born of Compassion and merges into Compassion, and hence the ultimate achievement of liberation is in compassionate salvation of sentient beings; Compassion stemmed from Wisdom and attains Wisdom, and hence the ultimate achievement of Compassion is in being naturally attachment-free.

Wisdom being formless and invisible is represented by Yin strokes (strokes formed by carving its shape into the seal so that the printout of such a stroke will remain blank), and this matches the Tantric teaching that Wisdom is represented by Mother (female) Buddhas (Yin represents the female principle). Compassion is illustrative only through active involvements, and hence it is demonstrated by Yang strokes (strokes formed by carving out the boundaries of its shape so that the printout of such a stroke will be in ink), and this matches the Tantric teaching that Skillful Means (compassionate salvation activities) is represented by Father (male) Buddhas. The perimeter shape of the characters and their colors (ink for Chinese seals is usually red) exactly symbolize the intimate union of red Bodhi and white Bodhi. (Cf. my work, "Significance of the Vajra Dharma Seal.")

The upper part of the Zhi-character (Wisdom) is larger, signifying using Wisdom to guide Compassion; the lower part of the Bei-character (Compassion) is larger (and it is the Xin-character (Mind) and hence it happened to match the significance of Great Mind), signifying using Compassion as support for Wisdom. The lower part of the Zhi-character is smaller, and it is the Ri-character (Sun), signifying that real Wisdom is as bright as the sun but it is hidden and inconspicuous, and hence ordinarily it is not easy to be comprehended; the upper part of the Bei-character is smaller, and it is the Fei-character (Inconsistency), signifying that the Great Compassion moves away from inconsistency and returns to Sunyata, and hence only through actual practice can one reach original purity.

Both characters Zhi and Bei are in dynamic style and their tendency (the moving direction of the rounded heads) circulates clockwise in accordance with the Buddhist tradition to signify mutual merging through endless circulation. They are two but in oneness, and in oneness yet with two aspects. They transform and appear in accordance with given circumstances; and yet remain free from duality and circumstantial influences and stay in natural harmony and tranquility.

As I got the inspiration for the construction of this seal as stated above, I wrote to Upasaka Tan Seong Yeow in Taipei, Taiwan about it, and asked him to carve the seal. He spent over one month in drawing tens of drafts, and finally finished the project at the conclusion of the third carving. He began the carving on lunar August 8th and perfectly completed the carving on the auspicious Mid-autumn Festival, lunar August 15th, that is traditionally regarded as an occasion for reunion and its full moon symbolic of perfect completion. The first draft of this article in Chinese was written in USA also on the auspicious Mid-autumn Festival. Such a coincidental matching of auspicious concurrence was certainly an auspicious omen for our subject, the harmonious union of Wisdom and Compassion.

When he mailed this seal to me he also enclosed a letter mentioning the following: in early morning of the Mid-autumn Festival in a dream a young man offered him a string of crystal prayer beads that was placed in a topless brocade box and the brocade was mainly in red color. I construed the dream as follows: red color represents Compassion; topless brocade box signifies unreserved instruction. A string of crystal prayer beads is held by the Tantric Four-arm White Chenrezig to signify applications of Compassion (salvation activities). Each and every crystal bead signifies the round and transparent Sunyata Wisdom that sentient beings innately have had; therefore, the string of crystal prayer beads represents harmonious union of Wisdom and Compassion. Furthermore, there is a deeper significance in that, since the string of prayer beads is continuously used in the hand of Chenrezig, it signifies that the harmonious union of Wisdom and Compassion is not static but instead turns around without hindrances and reflects according to situations.

Wisdom without implicit Compassion is not real Wisdom; Compassion that deviates from Wisdom is feigned Compassion. It should be the case that Wisdom is inseparable from Compassion and Compassion implies Wisdom; non-duality of Wisdom and Compassion means genuine Wisdom and Great Compassion. Wisdom and Compassion are originally non-dual; may all that have the opportunity to see a print of this seal would realize their innate non-duality of Wisdom and Compassion.


Written in Chinese on Halloween of 1993
Translated on October 14, 2004
Both at El Cerrito, California


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