The Hear Sutra

The Hear Sutra

Writing for this class is exclusively blogging and commenting on others? blog posts at
Reli 10-1: http://huwhatisreligion.wordpress.com/
Reli 10-A: http://whatisreligion10a.wordpress.com/

For almost every class day, you will blog a post of at least 350 words about the assigned reading. Each post is an exercise in critical thinking that should include three equal parts:

1) what you think of the reading and why
2) what might be another way to see it, possibly referencing your classmates? posts or class discussion, and
3) creative resolution or ruminative extension of the first two.

The idea is to take each post as a chance to push your thinking beyond what you already think?to go someplace new, even if just a little bit.

Tips:

? be as specific as possible
? be as clear and concise as possible
? edit out clich?s, filler and generalities
? dialogue with others and reference them, but be original
? avoid long quotes?if you must, omit them from your word count
? go for the intellectual rather than the personal, though they may overlap
? faith and no faith are both (in part) intellectual positions–what you believe or don?t believe is
subject to intellectual scrutiny in this class
? be you, take risks, be creative

Each day?s post is due by before the class hour.
For Reli 10-1: by 6am the day of class
For Reli 10-A: by 10am the day of class

The week of your class discussion leadership, when you comment on one post from each classmate, you have a full week to get it done, from Monday midnight to Monday midnight (for a Tuesday), or Wednesday midnight to Wednesday midnight (for a Thursday).

Other comments, for credit (10 x at least 150 words) or beyond that, have due dates for the first five and second five, as noted in your syllabus.

Grading Blog posts: ?well? means doing all three parts equally plus using the above tips

3 = all three parts done well
2 = two parts done well or three parts done so-so
1 = one part done well or two parts done so-so
0 = really very so-so or less

The Heart Sutra
Avalokiteshvara, the Bodhisattva of Compassion, meditating deeply on Perfection of Wisdom, saw clearly that the five aspects of human existence are empty*, and so released himself from suffering. Answering the monk Sariputra, he said this:

Body is nothing more than emptiness,
emptiness is nothing more than body.
The body is exactly empty,
and emptiness is exactly body.
The other four aspects of human existence —
feeling, thought, will, and consciousness —
are likewise nothing more than emptiness,
and emptiness nothing more than they.

All things are empty:
Nothing is born, nothing dies,
nothing is pure, nothing is stained,
nothing increases and nothing decreases.

So, in emptiness, there is no body,
no feeling, no thought,
no will, no consciousness.
There are no eyes, no ears,
no nose, no tongue,
no body, no mind.
There is no seeing, no hearing,
no smelling, no tasting,
no touching, no imagining.
There is nothing seen, nor heard,
nor smelled, nor tasted,
nor touched, nor imagined.

There is no ignorance,
and no end to ignorance.
There is no old age and death,
and no end to old age and death.
There is no suffering, no cause of suffering,
no end to suffering, no path to follow.
There is no attainment of wisdom,
and no wisdom to attain.

The Bodhisattvas rely on the Perfection of Wisdom,
and so with no delusions,
they feel no fear,
and have Nirvana here and now.

All the Buddhas,
past, present, and future,
rely on the Perfection of Wisdom,
and live in full enlightenment.

The Perfection of Wisdom is the greatest mantra.
It is the clearest mantra,
the highest mantra,
the mantra that removes all suffering.

This is truth that cannot be doubted.
Say it so:

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