These days, I spend all my time re-reading, thinking, reflecting, and experiencing some of the sutras in the Nikayas, including Truong Bo, Middle School, Samyutta Nikaya, Sangha Department and Minor.
Today is the 1st day of the 7th lunar month. The full moon of July is the end of the summer retreat season. July has another very special day: July 16 is the day Most Venerable Thich Minh Chau, who has diligently researched and translated the original Nikaya Buddhist scriptures into Vietnamese. (October 20 is His birthday).
From the day I knew him, I always remember him as the Tang Tang of the Vietnamese people, who saved so many Vietnamese children from ignorance, craving and suffering.
I was born in the North and when I was young, I only went to the temple according to religion and belief. In the eyes of the boy that day, the Buddha was a god, and the temple was a place to go to beg and beg. In the temple in my hometown, most of them are religious rituals and beliefs with self-view, suspicion and prohibition. At that time, the temple was full of old people (most of them were old women) who came to recite the Universal Gate, Amitabha, Earth Store, Medicine Master, etc. Reciting Amitabha Buddha. Absolutely no Fa teaching!
Fortunately (and perhaps due to great merit, from previous lives) I was able to meet the Venerable Thich Minh Chau. This blessing is thanks to Uncle Vu Cham (Chairman of Vina Shoes, Chairman of the Buddhist Entrepreneur Club in Saigon). I paid homage to him, listened to him preach.
But the biggest milestone was probably around 2008 when I first got my hands on the Middle East Sutra, one of the five Nikayas. I still remember that I devoured it. Before that I had never, never read the original Nikaya Buddhist scriptures. Only later did I obtain the full Nikaya Sutras, including the School, Central, Samyutta, Sangha and Minor.
I still remember I immediately read the first 4 sutras, namely the Pham Vong Sutra, the Ten Upper Sutra, the Basic Dharma Door Sutra, and the Cultivation Sutra. These are the first and last sutras of Truong Bo and Central Vietnam. It’s a bit confusing! Hard to remember!
I can’t forget the first version of the sutra I heard the Venerable Thich Minh Chau preach and heard Uncle Vu Cham repeatedly refer to it as the “Nhat Da sage” Sutra. This is one of the first two scriptures I memorized (along with the Phuoc Duc Sutra).
Later, listening to lectures, learning, discovering, and reading gradually, I found that there was a very important Sutra, the Sutra of Mindfulness (Sutta No. ). These 2 versions of the Sutra I read carefully, memorized each paragraph right away! And this is the key for me to study, think and practice mindfulness meditation. Great, excellent, wonderfull!
Then I went to find the first Sutra that the Buddha preached. I searched for the last version of the Buddha’s 45 years of teaching the Dharma. And there is already the Sutra of Zhuan Falun and the Sutra of Mahaparinirvana. It is truly miraculous. I memorized it right then and there. To remember, to think, to reflect, to contemplate, to practice.
From these initial basic suttas, I discovered that the path to practice according to the Dharma is 4812737 ie the Four Noble Truths + the Eightfold Path + the 12 causes and conditions + the 7 paths (Four Foundations of Mindfulness, Four Righteous Needs, Four Likes) Consciousness, Five Roots, Five Forces, Seven Enlightenment, and Eightfold Path) + with 37 branches of Dao Emperor. I know that just reading, studying, thinking, and practicing this formula is more than enough. It’s really great!
Like that and I continued to search for sutras that clearly explained the definition of each word, each word in important sutras such as: Turning the wheel of Dharma, the Four Foundations of Mindfulness, etc. Because simply, if you do not know the definitions and concepts, concept, there is no formula, if you don’t know the way, you will be blind. Really happy!
Today, July 1, sitting and reading the Nikaya, joy in body and mind is overflowing. It is strange that I always have joy when I read the Sutra, recite the Sutra, listen to the Sutra lecture, and share the Nikaya Sutra. That’s really it. Bliss kept flowing. Extremely peaceful and gentle. Very calm and self-sufficient. Strange relief and peace. I always feel excited, faithful when reading and reciting the Nikaya.
Startled many times, hundreds of times: If not Most Venerable Thich Minh Chau I am blind to the Buddhadharma, I do not know the Dharma. And if so, I just follow the path of religion and belief. If it weren’t for the Venerable Master, I wouldn’t have known the original Nikaya Buddhist scriptures (because I only know English, French, Russian, etc., but I don’t know Pali, so how can I read and understand Nikaya).
Sitting back, I have memorized the words of Most Venerable Thich Minh Chau right from the moment I had Nikaya in my hand. The Venerable pointed out and taught that:
“We translate the Pali Sutras, not for the purpose of wanting to support or not to support any school or position. Our purpose is only to introduce the sutras that can be considered as the most primitive or the most primitive, so that readers can learn the true teachings of the Buddha, without going through the lens of any school. whether it is India, China or Vietnam.
It is also our responsibility to make it clear to our readers which passages are original and which are not. Only readers, after reading for themselves, learning from themselves, thinking for themselves, observing themselves, and experiencing for themselves, can find out for themselves and see which passages are truly original. . The responsibility of finding out and experiencing personally is the responsibility of the reader, not the translator, because Buddhism is the Way that comes to see, not the Tao that comes to ask someone to see for you, the Way of the one with eyes (Cakkhumato). , not the Dao of those who close their eyes; The Way of the Seer, of the Knower (Passato Jànato), is not the Way of the One who does not see, does not know (Apassato Ajànato). So only readers can see for themselves, understand for themselves, and experience for themselves.”
This is what the Venerable Master pointed out in 1973, when I was only a few years old. Unfortunately, it took me more than 30 years to find out about the Central Sutra and Nikaya. Unfortunately (and fortunately) it wasn’t until I was over 40 that I really had on hand the original Buddhist scriptures to read, to study, to study, to reflect on and practice.
I was startled, having memorized two essential sentences, that only readers, after reading it themselves, learn from themselves, think for themselves, observe for themselves, and experience for themselves. That Buddhism is the Tao that comes to see, not the Way that comes to be seen by someone, the Tao of those with eyes, not the Tao of those with their eyes closed; The Way of the seer, of the knower, is not the Tao of the one who does not see or know. I have been constantly grateful to Most Venerable Thich Minh Chau, the Tang Tang of Vietnam. Grateful overflowing!
Every sentence in the 5 Nikayas I always remind myself to read carefully, ponder and memorize. Always recite sutras, always remind yourself to be mindful. Mindfulness is remembering, thinking, remembering, remembering, remembering. I vow to always remember the Sutras, to always think and remember, to remember the Dharma that the Blessed One realized and skillfully taught, and to always remember the very specific teachings of Shakyamuni Buddha. How happy!
Thanks to Most Venerable Thich Minh Chau, in 2008 I was really fortunate to know the Dharma. Only then did I gradually remember and practice the Eightfold Noble Path lifestyle with eight factors including: Right View, Right Thought, Right Speech, Right Action, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, and Right Mindfulness. determined. Thanks to the original Nikaya Buddhist scriptures, I realized that it is the Noble Eightfold Path that is the cessation of the four noble truths, that is, the path leading to the cessation of suffering and the cessation of birth from samsara. It is imperative to understand and practice the Noble Eightfold Path. Great, excellent, wonderfull!
Mindfulness is remembering. From the day I came to know the Nikaya Sutra translated into Vietnamese by Most Venerable Thich Minh Chau, I have always reminded myself of the Dharma, that is, the teachings of the Buddha. Buddha Shakyamuni was very clearly recorded in the Nikaya Sutra, including the School, the Middle, the Sagāra, the Sangha, and the Minor.
I must also honestly confess that before, I had misunderstood, completely wrong, wrongly practiced reciting the Buddha’s name, reciting the Dharma, and reciting the Sangha and did not know about the precepts, the generosity, and the heavens. It is thanks to Nikaya that I know that, reciting Buddha’s name is remembering Shakyamuni Buddha who is the Tathagata, noble Arahant, Perfectly Enlightened with 10 Virtues (10 Honors): Appreciation, Right Transformation .
Thanks to Nikaya I came to know that Dharma Recitation is remembering the Dharma that the Blessed One realized and skillfully preached, including five characteristics: Being present in the present, coming to see, having no time, being inclined towards the top, giving the wise enlighten themselves.
Thanks to the sutras translated into Vietnamese by Most Venerable Thich Minh Chau, I learned that the Sangha is to remember: Wonderful Hanh is the World Honored One’s disciples, Truc Hanh is the World Honored One’s Disciple, and Liang Hanh is the World’s Discipleship. Respect, Righteous conduct are the disciples of the Blessed One. That is, four pairs of eight. The Sangha, the disciples of the World Honored One, are worthy of reverence, of respect, of offerings, of clasped hands, the unsurpassed field of merit in the world.
And if it weren’t for the original Buddhist scriptures, I couldn’t see clearly that mindfulness of precepts is remembering to keep the 5 precepts, the 8 precepts, the 10 precepts: “The precepts are not broken, not chipped, not blemished, not blemished. impure, leading to liberation, praised by the wise, free from attachment, leading to meditation.”
And that mindfulness of giving: “It is beneficial to me! It is cleverly beneficial to me, because with the masses dominated by the defilements of greed and greed, I live at home, with a mind free from the defilement of lust, giving generously with clean, loving hands. likes to give up, is willing to be asked, loves to give alms.” (Anguttara Nikāya, Chapter Six of the Dharma – 1. Products Worth Paying Respect)
Thanks to the Most Venerable Thich Minh Chau, we have only 5 sets of the original Buddhist Sutras and thanks to that, we can know clearly about NGUYEN AN AN AN AN AN AN AN AN AN ANNOUNCEMENT, 6 FACILITIES, 6 TRAN (six domestic, six foreign), 6 EXPOSURE, 6 CONSIDERATIONS, 6 CONDITIONS, 6 Imagination, 6 THINKING, 6 LOVE, 4 DEFENSE, 3 BEAUTY, with a lot of brief sutras, the most important is distilled from 5 sets of Nikaya Sutras. Truly miraculous.
… In 15 days, Vietnamese Buddhists will celebrate the 10th anniversary of Venerable Thich Minh Chau’s departure from the temporary realm. I…