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Buddhadharma : Summer 2019
48 BUDDHADHARMA: THE PRACTITIONER'S QUARTERLY of the Sarvastivada school and from Vasubandhu’s own work, the Abhidharma-kosha-bhashya, which he wrote before coming into contact with the Mahayana. Thus the ManifestationOnly school contains many elements of nonMahayana teachings. Vasubandhu’s writings have served the Great Vehicle deeply and effectively, but they never became 100 percent Mahayana. Two centuries after his time, the ManifestationOnly school was still regarded as an “interim vehicle.” As a novice monk, I studied and memorized Vasubandhu’s Twenty and Thirty Verses in Chinese. When I came to the West, I realized that these important teachings on Buddhist psychology could open doors of understanding for people here. So in 1990 I composed the Fifty Verses to continue to polish the precious gems offered by the Buddha, Vasubandhu, Sthiramati, Xuanzang, Fazang, and others. I have tried to present the ManifestationOnly teachings in a completely Mahayana way. Allow the teachings to enter you as you might listen to music, or in the way the earth allows the rain to per meate it. If you use only your intellect to study these verses, it would be like putting plastic over the earth. But if you allow this dharma rain to penetrate your consciousness, these Fifty Verses will offer you the whole of the Abhidharma teachings “in a nutshell.” the path of praCtiCe Verses FortyOne through Fifty describe the way to practice. Medita tion on the nature of interdependence (paratantra) can transform delusion into illumination. With the daily training of looking deeply, of using our mindfulness to shed light on the interdependent nature of things, we can get rid of our tendency to conceive of things as permanent and having a separate self. With this illumination, we see that the world of birth and death, the world of samsara, has the same ground as the realm of suchness, nirvana. Samsara and such ness are not apart from each other. They are two dimensions of one