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Most Ven. Bupjeon’s Speech to Begin the 2008 Winter Retreat
Jogye Order’s Supreme Patriarch, Ven. Bupjeon gave the speech to officially open the winter retreat on November 12 (full moon day). In over 100 Seon temples throughout Korea , over 2200 practitioner monks and nuns began the winter retreat season. Just as in the summer retreat, there will be Uposatha Ceremonies throughout the winter retreat season. Following is the entire speech given by the most Ven. Bupjeon.
A monk asked Seon Master Ojo Bupyeon, “What is the work of Imje (Rinzai)’s followers?” The master replied, “The committer of the five sins hears the sound of thunder.”
The five sins of immediate retribution are: to kill one’s father, to severely harm one’s mother, to shed the blood of a Buddha, to cause a division in the Sangha, and to destroy Buddhist texts and statues. One will go to Avici Hell (worst of the hell realms) by committing any of these five sins. However, the great Seon patriarch Ven. Imje (Rinzai) newly adapted the five sins to make it his main practice.
“Father” is the father of ignorance. To kill one’s father is to be at peace wherever one goes, knowing that all that arises from the mind is the echo of emptiness.
“Mother” is the mother of desirous love. Even if desirous love arises in the mind, to know that all phenomena are without form, and be free of attachment is to severely harm one’s mother.
To shed the blood of a Buddha is to release all thoughts and hold on to nothing.
To cause a division within the Sangha is to know clearly that our thoughts and minds are bound by delusion. It is to realize that there is nothing to do, since the mind is like space.
To destroy Buddhist texts and statues is to know that interdependence, mind, and dharma are empty, thus becoming one mind, untouched by all things.
If one commits the five sins, one will fall to the Avici Hells. However, Imje’s five sins is the path of realization. We must avoid the original five sins, but Imje’s five sins must be committed everyday, moment to moment.
Then, what is the meaning of, “the committer of the five sins hears the sound of thunder?”
“Heogh!” (This is a loud cry from the belly, which Seon masters use to awaken students to sudden realization.)
Do you understand?
A single bean pops out of the cooled ashes.