Diamond sutra, chapter 13

“Subhuti, if on the one hand, a virtuous individual gives up his or her life many times as an act of generosity and continues doing so for countless ages; and if, on the other hand, another person listens to this Sutra with complete confidence and without contention, that person’s happiness will be far greater. But the happiness of one who writes this Sutra down and explains it to others cannot even be compared it is so great.”

“Subhuti, we can summarize by saying that the merit and virtue of this Sutra is boundless. The Buddha has declared this teaching for the benefit of initiates on the path to Enlightenment; he has declared it for the benefit of initiates on the path to Awakening. If there is someone capable of receiving, practicing, and sharing this Sutra with others, he or she will receive boundless merit and virtue. Such a person is known to be carrying the Supreme Enlightenment attained by the Buddha.”

We might be overwhelmed by repetition at this point. This is important to remember: many of these teachings spread by word of mouth first, rather than as written texts. So, it was important to make the same points over and over to ensure that the students remember them. The Buddha is reminding Subhuti that this Sutra is really important. Because we are studying it together, we are carrying the Supreme Enlightenment attained by the Buddha.

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About Daniel Scharpenburg

Daniel Scharpenburg is an independent dharma teacher living in Kansas City. He gives online teachings through the Open Heart Project, the largest virtual mindfulness community in the world. His writing has appeared in Lion's Roar, Patheos, Tattooed Buddha, and Elephant Journal.

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