This is an English translation of Nan Huai Jin’s talk on the Zhunti secret method. Please note that my translations are amateur and you need to do your own research, do not believe what I write here and please test it out for yourselves. I welcome any corrections if you spot any. Please, do not take anything that I write here as the definite, please definitely do your own research, I have only done this translation for the sake of some people who cannot read Mandarin, so I do not want to incur the karma of spreading wrong interpretations of Master Nan’s words. Therefore, any mistake is my own, and not the master’s.


Section 1: The Doctrine of Zhunti Dharma-door

  1. Why did I not transmit esoteric methods?
  2. Chan and Esoteric Buddhism emphasise on lineage and transmission
  3. Learners of Esoteric Buddhism must first understand the doctrine clearly
  4. From a common person to becoming a Buddha, this is one baptism method

Section 2: The Unique Superiority of the Zhunti Dharma-door

  1. Zhunti is the mantra of all Buddhas, du bu bie xing
  2. Unsurpassed, deeply wondrous esoteric method…

[Completed as translation is done]

1. Why did I not transmit esoteric methods?

I have never formally transmitted esoteric methods, in reality for the big sects in Vajrayana, I am a Great ācārya. Regardless of whether it is Nyingma, Sakya, Gelug or Kagyu, even Japanese esoteric Buddhism, I have the qualification of transmission. However I do not transmit, why? I am afraid of everyone becoming superstitious. The real esoteric methods are extremely strict/rigorous, there is nothing that I can teach, and no students that are qualified to learn. I have transmitted some a few times, but they were unofficial/informal. This time transmitting the method, you guys have the fortune. However in the future you cannot go and teach people, you need to cultivate yourself until you have an accomplishment, before you can go and teach people.

There are indications of cultivation accomplishment, your body and mind have to transform, not like orthodox teachings, the Chan sect, that concentrate on the mind’s nature. In other words, esoteric methods are depending on the Alaya consciousness to cultivate. There are many esoteric methods that are transmitted outside, in my eyes, a large proportion of them are not real esoteric methods. The learning of esoteric methods is very serious, if you do not handle it well it can become an external path, which can be called a mara (demon) path.

Chan Buddhism dharma advocates for “from Life to become a Buddha” (unsure translation), Esoteric methods advocate differently as “from body to Buddha”. This is even more serious than just “life”, even bringing this meat-body to accomplishment. Cultivation starts from the 8th Alaya consciousness, while Orthodox cultivation methods follow the 6th Yi consciousness. The 6th Patriarch said “…”. The cultivation of esoteric methods, directly transform the seeds of the Alaya consciousness when in the midst of being in effect, therefore the 5 consciousnesses also follow and transform. It does not follow the path of “emptiness”, following the path of “having”, actually this “having” is also “ji you ji kong“. From another perspective of the cultivation of Pure land Buddhism, it is a big esoteric sect, of course, the real Chan sect can also be said to be a big esoteric sect.  Emptiness has double yuan (T/N: I think it refers to the 5 consciousnesses and 8th consciousness), and is the real esoteric sect. Therefore, I commonly am not willing to transmit, because the doctrine learning of typical people are not thorough.

Next, cultivating and learning esoteric methods is after the death of Shakyamuni Buddha, the model of genuinely learning Buddhism. Cultivation is very solemn. Discipline/conduct, Samadhi, Wisdom, Mahayana, Hinayana, inside, outside, all conduct, at any time and place, must be in tangible rules. In tangible rules, you must achieve where oneself’s mind conduct has no form and appearance, transformed. Current, future, and all seed-natures, are transformed into seed-nature of becoming Buddha, therefore it is more difficult. If this point is unclear, when all kinds of alambana happen, it is very easy to enter outside-paths and mara (demon) paths. Therefore, in later generations of Tibet, the primitive Gelug sect is correct, which insists that doctrine must first be learnt! Only after studying thoroughly the doctrine, then the method is passed to you, then you can be on your way. Like the White Lotus Society, all paths, are influenced by Vajrayana cultivation, however their paths are not good. Therefore in the Ming Dynasty, they expelled the esoteric teachings. In the Tang Dynasty, when Hui-guo Acariya obtained esoteric methods, spreading to the East Asian countries, which is the Japanese Esoteric Buddhism in Mount Gao-Ye of Japan. Another path, from Tang dynasty, spreading to Tibet. These two paths are not the same, Eastern and Tibetan cultivation theories, sequence are different, I must teach at least lessons for 3 months before I can even clarify this.

Moreover, whether it is Eastern Esoterism, or Tibetan Esoterism, esoteric methods must especially pay attention to “The Vowing X of Samantabhadra(T/N: X refers to either a good, a rank/grade, a character/disposition/variety). The 10 great vows of Samantabhadra, must be kept anytime and anywhere. Therefore, the cultivation of esoteric methods cannot be separated from Buddha altars with form, Buddha statues, at all times feeling that you are with the Buddha. Therefore to install the Buddha altar, at all times you have to cultivate and maintain, at all times you have to invite transmission of Buddhist teaching, at anytime and anywhere you must be in the mind-conduct of giving (dana). Because the many cause-and-effects are not easy, it is difficult to do. This is referring to people to cultivate methods. It is also difficult for people teaching methods.

[To be continued]

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