- He is the
incarnation of Bodhisattva Ti-Tsang ( the Deliverer from Hell )
- Hui Neng was born in Canton
and two days after he was born, two monks came to his home and said:
‘Your son has great affinity with Buddha, therefore we come to
give him a name. Hui means in the future he will be able to use the
wisdom of Buddhist teachings to help the mortals; Neng means he will
be able to illuminate the Dharma of the Buddha.’
- Hui Neng’s father died
when he was only three and his childhood was poor and difficult.
- When he was twenty-four,
while delivering a batch of fire wood to a store, he heard a guest
reciting the Diamond Sutra, he was enlightened. He asked the guest
where he obtained the sutra and the guest told him from a temple in
Huang Mei. The guest with generosity gave him ten ounces so that he
will be able to leave for Huang Mei to pay the fifth Patriarch a
visit and be his disciple.
- Even though he did not
become a monk under the fifth Patriarch Hong Yen at that time, with
his true wisdom, he was chosen to become the sixth Patriarch to
carry on the lineage of Tao.
- The Sutra of
Hui Neng on Prajna ( wisdom ) :
- "In the
future, if an initiate of my dharma should make a vow in company
with his fellow disciples to devote his whole life without
retrogression to the practice of the teaching of this ‘Sudden’
dharma, in the same spirit and dedication as that for serving
Buddha, he would reach without failure the Path of Holiness. But
this righteous person must be transmitted confidentially from heart
to heart the instruction handed down from the past Patriarchs; and
yet no attempt should be made to conceal this method of immediacy.
To those whose views and objectives are different from ours, the
dharma should not be transmitted, since it will be anything but good
for them. This step is taken lest ignorant persons who cannot
understand this dharma should make slanderous remarks about it and
thereby annihilate their seed of Buddha nature for hundreds of
Kalpas and thousands of incarnations."
- This ‘sudden’
dharma is the Three Heavenly Treasures
we have received during the Tao ceremony. In this ceremony we made
the Ten Great Vows before God and received the transmission of Tao.
those whose views and objectives are different from ours, the dharma
should not be transmitted."
- This implies the
responsibilities of the introducer and guarantor. To those whose
views and objectives are different, not only will it create problems
and obstructions in the temple but it may also have no benefit to
the person who received Tao.
- Hui Neng asked to take note
of his stanza:
beings who sow the seeds of enlightenment
- In the
field of causation will reap the fruit of Buddhahood.
objects void of Buddha-nature
- Sow not and
- This implies that for those
who received Tao, which is the seed of enlightenment, the fruit is
attainment of Tao that is to become an immortal of eternal peace or
Bodhisattva Ti-Tsang (
The Deliverer from Hell)
The body of Hui Neng at
Nan Hua Temple, Canton, China. Hui Neng is the reincarnation of