THE SAGELY CITY OF TEN THOUSAND BUDDHAS
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The Wondrous Adornments of the Rulers of the Worlds

Chapter One, Part One
A Commentary by the Venerable Master Hsuan Hua_

13. Water-ruling Spirits

Sutra:

Moreover, there were countless Water-ruling Spirits. Specifically, they were: Water-ruling Spirit Creating Banners of Clouds Everywhere; Water-ruling Spirit Sea-Tide Cloud Sound; Water-ruling Spirit Wheel-like Cowl of Wondrous Colors; Water-ruling Spirit Whirlpools of Skilled Expedients; Water-ruling Spirit Immaculate Accumulation of Fragrance; Water-ruling Spirit Bridge to Blessings and Voice of Light; Water-ruling Spirit Comfortable Contentment; Water-ruling Spirit Kindly Sound of Pure Joy; Water-ruling Spirit Universally Manifesting Majestic Light; and Water-ruling Spirit Roaring Sound Pervading Seas. These and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Water-ruling Spirits, and they benefited all sentient beings, diligently saving and protecting them.

Commentary:

Moreover, there were countless Water-ruling Spirits. Although the rivers and oceans mentioned earlier are all bodies of water, those spirits were not in charge of the water itself. Now these are spirits who rule over water. The relationship between the spirits ruling the rivers, oceans, and water is the same as that between Forest-ruling Spirits and Mountain-ruling Spirits. There was an infinite number of Water-ruling Spirits as well.

Specifically, they were: Water-ruling Spirit Creating Banners of Clouds Everywhere, who uses clouds to form jeweled banners. There was a spirit named Water-ruling Spirit Sea-Tide Cloud Sound, who emits the sounds of the sea tide. Another spirit has the name Water-ruling Spirit Wheel-like Cowl of Wondrous Colors, for she has an orb of wonderful colors. Water-ruling Spirit Whirlpools of Skilled Expedients has a clever way of making the water whirl and revolve constantly. Another spirit has the name Water-ruling Spirit Immaculate Accumulation of Fragrance. She is free from all defiling dharmas. Food that is prepared using her water is fragrant and flavorful.

In listening to the Flower Adornment Sutra, we learn of the existence of numerous spirits governing water. In ancient times, cultivators who lived up in the mountains used only half a catty—eight Chinese ounces—of water per day. They dared not use too much water, for fear they would lose their blessings. If they were so frugal with regard to water, you can imagine how frugal they were in using other things. Now, we take water for granted and use as much as we want, casually wasting it. But we have to be careful in all aspects of cultivation. We cannot afford to be sloppy about anything. The Water-ruling Spirits keep track of how much water we use each day. If we waste water, they will say, “Oh, you cultivators have wasted so much water; I’ll make you go to the toilet a few more times! Then you’ll have less time to cultivate.” If we reckon the time we lose each day because of this, in the long run it adds up to a lot of time wasted. Therefore, we must pay attention to even the minor details of cultivation. We cannot be the least bit sloppy.

There was another spirit named Water-ruling Spirit Bridge to Blessings and Voice of Light. She bestows all kinds of blessings upon sentient beings and increases their blessings, serving as a bridge. She also emits light to proclaim the Dharma. There was another spirit by the name of Water-ruling Spirit Comfortable Contentment. After people drink the water under her jurisdiction, they naturally become content, at ease, and comfortable, and no longer have confused thoughts.

Another spirit present was named Water-ruling Spirit Kindly Sound of Pure Joy. The water that she watches over is pure. Anyone who drinks it becomes happy. She also makes a benevolent sound. People become reverent when they see the majestic light of Water-ruling Spirit Universally Manifesting Majestic Light. The spirit named Water-ruling Spirit Roaring Sound Pervading Seas rules over water which constantly booms with a roaring sound that reverberates throughout the oceans and seas.

These ten Water-ruling Spirits mentioned above and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Water-ruling Spirits. There were countlessly many other Water-ruling Spirits. And they benefited all sentient beings, diligently saving and protecting them. They regarded the rescue of all sentient beings as their work and their responsibility. They conferred benefits upon sentient beings.

14. Fire-ruling Spirits

Sutra:

Moreover, there were innumerable Fire-ruling Spirits. Specifically, they were: Fire-ruling Spirit Treasury of Universal Flames; Fire-ruling Spirit Banner of Universally Assembled Light; Fire-ruling Spirit Great Light Everywhere Shining; Fire-ruling Spirit Palaces of Multitudes of Wonders; Fire-ruling Spirit Cowl of Infinite Light; Fire-ruling Spirit All Kinds of Blazing Eyes; Fire-ruling Spirit Palaces Resembling Mount Sumeru in the Ten Directions; Fire-ruling Spirit Awesome Light of Self-Mastery; Fire-ruling Spirit Darkness-Destroying Brilliance; and Fire-ruling Spirit Thunder Sound and Lightning Flash. These and others acted as leaders of an inestimable number of Fire-ruling Spirits, and they all revealed various kinds of brilliance, dispelling the burning afflictions of sentient beings.

Commentary:

Moreover, there were innumerable Fire-ruling Spirits. The Water-ruling Spirits are followed by Fire-ruling Spirits. Fire, too, is governed by spirits. Fire cannot do whatever it likes; it’s watched over by spirits. Specifically, they were: Fire-ruling Spirit Treasury of Universal Flames, who has an immense light which shines everywhere. Her treasury of blazing light is infinite. There was another Fire-ruling Spirit named Banner of Universally Assembled Light. Her light is shaped like a banner. There was another Fire-ruling Spirit called Great Light Everywhere Shining. Her light is tremendous and shines universally. Fire-ruling Spirit Palaces of Multitudes of Wonders adorns palaces with the myriad jewels.

Also present was Fire-ruling Spirit Cowl of Infinite Light, whose light is inexhaustible, streaming from the top of her head. Another Fire-ruling Spirit named All Kinds of Blazing Eyes has different kinds of blazing eyes. Yet another Fire-ruling Spirit has the name Palaces Resembling Mount Sumeru in the Ten Directions. She commands palaces throughout the ten directions, and the palaces are as lofty as Mount Sumeru. There is another spirit by the name of Fire-ruling Spirit Awesome Light of Self-Mastery. Another Fire-ruling Spirit is named Darkness-Destroying Brilliance, and another Fire-ruling Spirit has the name Thunder Sound and Lightning Flash. Those ten Fire-ruling Spirits mentioned above and others acted as leaders of an inestimable number of Fire-ruling Spirits. Aside from the leaders, there was an unreckonable number of other Fire-ruling Spirits. And they all revealed various kinds of brilliance. Since fire is bright to begin with and they are in charge of fire, they can manifest light as they wish, dispelling the burning afflictions of all sentient beings. Why is fire able to dispel afflictions? This is “fighting poison with poison,” or fighting fire with fire. People are plagued with the fire of ignorance.

The fire of ignorance, like a tiger spirit,
Comes from the roots of past lives’ offenses.

The fire of ignorance is fiercer than a tiger spirit—what does this mean? Sometimes, without knowing how, we give rise to wrong knowledge and views, or impure thoughts. We don’t know why, but we aren’t able to be masters of ourselves. We lose control. All of that can be traced to offenses made in past lives. The bad karma we created may be too profuse; the roots of our offenses may be too deep. Therefore, cultivation aims at pulling out the very roots of ignorance. Then we can dispel burning afflictions.

15. Wind-ruling Spirits

Sutra:

Moreover, there were countless Wind-ruling Spirits. Specifically, they were: Wind-ruling Spirit Unobstructed Radiance; Wind-ruling Spirit Universally Manifesting Courageous Karma; Wind-ruling Spirit Drifting and Striking Cloud Banner; Wind-ruling Spirit Adornment with Pure Light; Wind-ruling Spirit Power to Dry Up Water; Wind-ruling Spirit Loud and Pervasive Howling; Wind-ruling Spirit Cowl of Trailing Branches; Wind-ruling Spirit Unimpeded Travel; Wind-ruling Spirit Manifold Palaces; and Wind-ruling Spirit Great Light Universally Shining. These and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Wind-ruling Spirits, and they all were diligent in eradicating thoughts of conceit.

Commentary:

Moreover, there were countless Wind-ruling Spirits. There are many different kinds of wind: gales, tornadoes, hurricanes, typhoons, and so on. Winds have names, and so wind-ruling Spirits have names, too. Winds are [were at that time, now they are alternately male and female] considered maidens, and so they are named Miss So-and-So. This also implies that young ladies are like the wind. In Chinese, when the “sickness” radical is added to the word for “wind,” we have the word for “insanity.” The meaning here is that young ladies sometimes go insane for a while without knowing why. The real reason is ignorance—a lack of understanding.

Wind-ruling Spirits watch over winds, which is to say that they watch over young ladies, because young ladies tend to be a little unruly and need to be under the supervision of wind-ruling Spirits. Winds can do a lot of damage—uproot trees, knock down houses, and kill people.

Specifically, they were: Wind-ruling Spirit Unobstructed Radiance, whose light cannot be blocked. There is also Wind-ruling Spirit Universally Manifesting Courageous Karma. She is extremely brave, and her wind is quite fierce: It uproots trees and knocks down houses. Wind-ruling Spirit Drifting and Striking Cloud Banner is even fiercer than the previous spirit. When the houses fail to topple, she uses a blast of wind like a stone or a cannonball to knock them down for good. Another Wind-ruling Spirit is named Adornment with Pure Light. Another Wind-ruling Spirit named Power to Dry Up Water has so much power that her wind can dry up the waters of the oceans.

There is a Wind-ruling Spirit named Loud and Pervasive Howling. The tremendous sound of her wind when it blows is like a mighty roar startling the heavens and jolting the earth. Another Wind-ruling Spirit is called Cowl of Trailing Branches. Her cowl is shaped like a canopy of overhanging branches. The next Wind-ruling Spirit is named Unimpeded Travel. Wherever her wind blows, it is unimpeded; nothing can stop it. Another Wind-ruling Spirit has the name Manifold Palaces. She has a wide array of palaces. And there was also a Wind-ruling Spirit named Great Light Universally Shining.

These ten Wind-ruling Spirits and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Wind-ruling Spirits. It is not possible to mention all the Wind-ruling Spirits here, because they are too numerous. And they all, whether mentioned here or not, were diligent in eradicating thoughts of conceit. What these Wind-ruling Spirits are most intent on doing is eradicating their arrogant thoughts. What is arrogance? It is an overwhelming sense of pride, a bloated ego that causes a person to think he is better than everyone else. There are arrogant people in literary circles, for example, certain scholars and professors who think they are absolutely tops in their field. Then there are arrogant people in the business world, such as certain entrepreneurs who think they are more ingenious than anyone else. There are arrogant working people who think that the work they do is better than the work done by others. There are arrogant people in the circle of officials, for example, certain ministers or cabinet members, who think they govern and administrate better than everyone else. Even in the world of agriculture, there are farmers who think that they farm better than anyone else.

Some lay Buddhists think, “I have studied more than anyone else. I understand more than anyone else. No other layperson knows as much as I do.” Some left-home people also have this problem. They feel that among the members of the Sangha, they are supreme and no one measures up to them. They even think that they are on a par with the Patriarchs. They profess to be equal not just to the Patriarchs, but even to the Bodhisattvas. Not to mention being the equals of Bodhisattvas, they even say they are no different from the Buddhas. These are all manifestations of arrogance. But the Wind-ruling Spirits have eradicated all their arrogance.


Buddhists must take care not to have a sense of self. As long as we cannot relinquish our sense of self, we are going to have a problem with arrogance. We should not try to make people look up to us; that is a sign of arrogance. Well, should we want people to look down on us? We simply should not indulge in thoughts of whether people look up to us or look down on us. We should do our own cultivation and our own practice. Rather than being concerned about getting other people to look up to us, we should respect ourselves. We should examine our own mind: Do we have greed? Do we have anger? Do we have deluded thoughts? If we haven’t cut off these three poisons, we are nothing but a deluded being. How could we possibly be better than everyone else? People should direct their attention inward and take a look at themselves.

Have you been arrogant or self-satisfied at times? If you have, then quickly change. Seek within yourself. Be constantly alert and scrutinize yourself under the cold light of reason. If you have done good, that’s all the more reason to go forward. If you have done evil, then quickly reform. If you constantly examine yourself, you are not likely to become arrogant.

16. Space-ruling Spirits

Sutra:

Moreover, there were countless Space-ruling Spirits. Specifically, they were: Space-ruling Spirit Pure Light Shining Everywhere; Space-ruling Spirit Universally Roaming Far and Wide; Space-ruling Spirit Producing Auspicious Wind; Space-ruling Spirit Dwelling Secure and Unhindered; Space-ruling Spirit Broad Stride and Wondrous Cowl; Space-ruling Spirit Unobstructed Blaze of Light; Space-ruling Spirit Unhindered Supreme Power; Space-ruling Spirit Immaculate Radiance; Space-ruling Spirit Far-Reaching Wondrous Sounds; and Space-ruling Spirit Light Pervading the Ten Directions. These and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Space-ruling Spirits, and their minds were free from defilement, being vast, bright, and cleansed.

Commentary:

Moreover, there were countless Space-ruling Spirits. These spirits rule empty space, which itself has a name. In Sanskrit it is called sunyata, which means “emptiness” in English, and would be called by other names in other languages.

What is emptiness? It’s nothing whatsoever, and yet everything is there. What does this mean? Well, people are contained within emptiness, houses are contained within emptiness, and so is everything else. Emptiness is not empty, because it has wonderful existence. And existence is nonexistent, for it is really true emptiness. What thing would you say doesn’t exist within empty space? And what emptiness is there that isn’t included within existence? Our bodies, for instance, seem to take up a certain amount of space and thereby reduce the amount of emptiness, but in reality our bodies are also empty inside. Since they have a physical shape and appearance, we think that they exist. Actually, all that exists is itself emptiness, and emptiness is just existence. True emptiness does not obstruct wonderful existence, and wonderful existence does not obstruct true emptiness. True emptiness is not empty, and therefore it is called wonderful existence. Wonderful existence is nonexistent, and therefore it is called true emptiness.

Emptiness doesn’t have much use, since it’s empty. Yet all function, all usefulness, is born from emptiness. In meditation we contemplate emptiness as follows:

Internally, contemplate mind: there is no mind.
Externally, contemplate form: there is no form.
In the distance, contemplate objects: there are none.
Of these three, not one exists:
Inside, no body or mind; outside, no world.

What is there, then? There is just emptiness. And yet, although we call it emptiness, all of us sentient beings exist right within that emptiness. Therefore, if you say it’s empty, nonetheless it exists. If you say it exists, nonetheless it’s empty. Because emptiness is empty and boundless, there is no one in charge of it. That’s why these spirits have to watch over emptiness. “You have your space; I have mine. Your space cannot damage mine; my space does not intrude upon yours.” The individual spaces are mutually harmonious and non-interfering.

Specifically, they were: Space-ruling Spirit Pure Light Shining Everywhere; Space-ruling Spirit Universally Roaming Far and Wide; Space-ruling Spirit Producing Auspicious Wind, who brings about auspicious winds. Anyone who encounters this type of wind will be graced with good fortune. For example, you might step out of your house, stumble and fall, only to discover a gold brick lying on the road. Wouldn’t you consider that good luck?

There was another Space-ruling Spirit named Dwelling Secure and Unhindered. Since this spirit is free from obstacles, she abides securely on the Ground of Not Moving.

Emptiness can never be discussed completely, because it is empty. Therefore, we should not discuss it further. It’s simply emptiness.

The strides of Space-ruling Spirit Broad Stride and Wondrous Cowl are broad and swift. Why is her stride swift? Because she is empty. That makes her quicker than anything. The brilliance of Space-ruling Spirit Unobstructed Blaze of Light shines everywhere without hindrance; nothing can block it. The unimpeded strength of Space-ruling Spirit Unhindered Supreme Power surpasses all other kinds of power. No power can compare to the power of emptiness. There was another Space-ruling Spirit by the name of Immaculate Radiance. Since she is immaculate, she shines. Since she shines, she can be immaculate. The melodious sounds of Space-ruling Spirit Far-Reaching Wondrous Sounds can reach distant places.

And there was another Space-ruling Spirit named Light Pervading the Ten Directions. These ten Space-ruling Spirits and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Space-ruling Spirits. The actual number of Space-ruling Spirits is infinite. And their minds were free from defilement, being vast, bright, and cleansed. They had removed the filth from their minds, and so the measure of their minds became very broad and bright, and their thoughts were very pure.

17. Direction-ruling Spirits

Sutra:

Moreover, there were countless Direction-ruling Spirits. Specifically, they were: Direction-ruling Spirit Pervasively Dwelling Everywhere; Direction-ruling Spirit Universally Displaying Brilliance; Direction-ruling Spirit Adorned with Luminous Practices; Direction-ruling Spirit Traveling Freely Everywhere; Direction-ruling Spirit Forever Severing Delusions; Direction-ruling Spirit Pervasively Roaming in the Pure Void; Direction-ruling Spirit Cloud-like Banner of Resonant Sound; Direction-ruling Spirit Unscattered Eyes of the Cowl; Direction-ruling Spirit Universally Observing the Karma of Worlds; and Direction-ruling Spirit Everywhere Touring. These and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Direction-ruling Spirits, and they used expedients to universally radiate bright light, shining eternally upon the ten directions.

Commentary:

Moreover, there were countless Direction-ruling Spirits. There are said to be ten directions, which can be further divided into hundreds of thousands of tens of thousands of directions. How does that work? For example, east isn’t really fixed. You can call a certain place “east,” but if you walk east of it then it becomes west. That’s why there is no fixed place that is the center, and there are also no fixed directions. Although the directions are not fixed, in general there are five major directions: east, west, north, south, and center. The five directions correspond to the five elements. East corresponds to wood, south to fire, west to metal, north to water, and the center to earth.

In other words, wood thrives in the east, fire flourishes in the south, metal prevails in the west, water is strong in the north, and earth dominates in the center. Moreover, the four seasons are also related to the five elements. Wood thrives in the spring, fire thrives in the summer, metal thrives in the autumn, and water thrives in the winter. Earth thrives in all four seasons.

Moreover, the directions are related to the Ten Celestial Stems:

1. East (wood) is associated with jia yi [stems 1 and 2] and the color green, so the Direction-ruling Spirit who rules over the east is called the Green Emperor.
2. South (fire) is associated with bing ding [stems 3 and 4] and the color red, and so the spirit who rules over the south is called the Scarlet Emperor.
3. West (metal) is associated with geng xin [stems 7 and 8] and the color white, and so the Direction-ruling Spirit who rules over the west is called the White Emperor.
4. North (water) is associated with ren gui [stems 9 and 10] and the color black, and so the spirit who rules over the north is called the Black Emperor.
5. The center (earth) is associated with wu ji [stems 5 and 6] and the color yellow, and so the spirit who rules over the center is called the Yellow Emperor.
Those are the main spirits of the five directions, each presiding over her respective location. There are actually innumerable Direction-ruling Spirits.

Specifically, they were: Direction-ruling Spirit Pervasively Dwelling Everywhere. She has no fixed location, and so she dwells everywhere. Another Direction-ruling Spirit, named Universally Displaying Brilliance, can make bright light appear anywhere. There is another Direction-ruling Spirit by the name of Adorned with Luminous Practices. Her radiance as well as her practices serve as adornments. Another Direction-ruling Spirit called Traveling Freely Everywhere can go anywhere without obstruction. Although she is said to rule over a region, her region is so vast that it has no boundaries. The next Direction-ruling Spirit is named Forever Severing Delusions. People are deluded because they haven’t cut off their delusions. Once they sever their delusions, they won’t be confused anymore. This spirit helps people sever their delusions. She has also put an end to her own delusions.

The next Direction-ruling Spirit has the name Pervasively Roaming in the Pure Void. This spirit is able to travel anywhere at all throughout space. There was another Direction-ruling Spirit by the name of Cloud-like Banner of Resonant Sound, and another Direction-ruling Spirit called Unscattered Eyes of the Cowl. The Direction-ruling Spirit named Universally Observing the Karma of Worlds can observe the karma of beings in all worlds. And the final Direction-ruling Spirit is called Everywhere Touring. Since she rules over directions, she goes sightseeing everywhere and takes vacations.

These and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Direction-ruling Spirits. There are many, many more of them. And they used expedients to universally radiate bright light, shining eternally upon the ten directions. They send forth brilliant light throughout the ten directions so that all darkness is chased away. This light shines on and on, never stopping or being cut off. The beams of light are sent out one after another, like successive waves. These are light waves. In our present atomic age, there is radar, which operates on the principle of light waves and sound waves. This light shines on without interruption throughout the ten directions.

18. Night-ruling Spirits

Sutra:

Moreover, there were countless Night-ruling Spirits. Specifically, they were: Night-ruling Spirit Pure Light of Universal Virtue; Night-ruling Spirit Happy Eyes Observing the World; Night-ruling Spirit Protecting the World’s Essence and Energy; Night-ruling Spirit Sound of the Tranquil Sea; Night-ruling Spirit Universally Manifesting Good Auspices; Night-ruling Spirit Universally Blossoming Flowers of Trees; Night-ruling Spirit Impartially Protecting and Nurturing; Night-ruling Spirit Joy of Playful Roaming; Night-ruling Spirit Perpetually Blissful Faculties; and Night-ruling Spirit Displaying Pure Blessings. These and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Night-ruling Spirits, and they all cultivated diligently and took delight in the Dharma.

Commentary:

Moreover, there were countless Night-ruling Spirits. Their number is beyond reckoning. These spirits rule over the nighttime and they are known as the “yang within the yin.” Yin refers to darkness. Nighttime is dark, yet these spirits emit light in the darkness.

Specifically, they were: Night-ruling Spirit Pure Light of Universal Virtue. Her virtuous practices are all-pervasive, and so her light is pristine and pure. There is another Night-ruling Spirit named Happy Eyes Observing the World. She is always happy, and she makes sentient beings who see her happy as well. She views all the causes and conditions that occur in the world. There is another Night-ruling Spirit called Protecting the World’s Essence and Energy. She protects the energy and essence of all sentient beings in the world. Nighttime is dark, but these spirits bring light to the darkness.

There is another Night-ruling Spirit called Sound of the Tranquil Sea. Still tranquility is samadhi, and the sound of the sea is movement. Within both stillness and movement, this Night-ruling Spirit protects sentient beings and enables them to attain concentration power. Another Night-ruling Spirit has the name Universally Manifesting Good Auspices. Everywhere she goes, she makes appear auspicious states where everything happens the way one wishes. The Night-ruling Spirit named Universally Blossoming Flowers of Trees enables the trees that she watches over to blossom. Flowers have flower spirits and trees have tree spirits. All the various kinds of vegetation, large and small, have spirits who rule over them. Once the Empress Wu Zetian of the Tang Dynasty wanted to go to the imperial gardens to look at the flowers. But it was winter and there weren’t any flowers in bloom. Thereupon she issued an edict in the form of a poem.

Tomorrow I’m going to the Imperial Gardens.
The flowers should be immediately informed to blossom.
They should open their petals tonight
And not wait for the gentle breezes of tomorrow’s dawn.

She had the poetic edict delivered to the flower garden and just as she had ordered, the flowers opened during the night. They were very obedient. You can see that it was Empress Wu Zetian’s destiny to be endowed with the powers of an empress.

The next Night-ruling Spirit is named Impartially Protecting and Nurturing. She is impartial toward all sentient beings, making no discriminations between one being and another. She protects and teaches them so that they all obtain benefit. There is another Night-ruling Spirit named Joy of Playful Roaming. Not only does she herself like to roam and travel worry-free at night in happy playfulness, she also enjoys causing sentient beings to be carefree, full of joy, and free to roam.

The next Night-ruling Spirit is named Perpetually Blissful Faculties. Even more strange, this spirit’s six senses—her eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, and mind—are always laughing and beaming with joy. She is never worried, and so when sentient beings see her they become happy and worry-free as well. And finally there is a Night-ruling Spirit named Displaying Pure Blessings. This spirit helps sentient beings to obtain pure blessings.

These and others acted as leaders of a countless number. These ten Night-ruling Spirits are the leaders of an infinite array of Night-ruling Spirits, and they all cultivated diligently and took delight in the Dharma. They are extremely industrious, never slothful or remiss. They find great joy in cultivating the Buddhadharma and also cause sentient beings to obtain happiness from the Dharma.

19. Day-ruling Spirits

Sutra:

Moreover, there were countless Day-ruling Spirits. Specifically, they were: Day-ruling Spirit Making Palaces Appear; Day-ruling Spirit Exuding Fragrance of Wisdom; Day-ruling Spirit Adornment with Supreme Bliss; Day-ruling Spirit Fragrant Flowers’ Wondrous Light; Day-ruling Spirit Everywhere Collecting Wonderful Medicines; Day-ruling Spirit Happy Eyes Creating Joy; Day-ruling Spirit Universally Manifesting in All Directions; Day-ruling Spirit Great Compassion Light; Day-ruling Spirit Shining Light From Good Roots; and Day-ruling Spirit Lovely Flower Garlands. These and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Day-ruling Spirits, and they all brought forth faith and understanding of the wonderful Dharma. Together they constantly and vigorously adorned the palace.


Commentary:


Moreover, there were countless Day-ruling Spirits. The previous section listed Night-ruling Spirits. There are also infinitely many Day-ruling Spirits. Day spirits are called the “yang within the yang.” These spirits oversee the activities of sentient beings during the daytime.

Specifically, they were: Day-ruling Spirit Making Palaces Appear, who manifests all kinds of palaces; Day-ruling Spirit Exuding Fragrance of Wisdom, who produces the scent of wisdom; Day-ruling Spirit Adornment with Supreme Bliss, who happily adorns the dwelling places of all sentient beings; Day-ruling Spirit Fragrant Flowers’ Wondrous Light, who gives off a fragrance and a sublime radiance. Another Day-ruling Spirit named Everywhere Collecting Wonderful Medicines gathers many medicinal herbs to cure all sentient beings’ illnesses. Another Day-ruling Spirit named Happy Eyes Creating Joy likes to do things that make sentient beings happy. Another Day-ruling Spirit called Universally Manifesting in All Directions is able to go to all places. Another Day-ruling Spirit named Great Compassion Light has a great compassionate heart and constantly emits light to aid all sentient beings. Another Day-ruling Spirit by the name of Shining Light From Good Roots emits light to shine upon beings who have good roots. Beings who lack good roots are caused to plant them. The good roots of those who already have them are caused to mature. People whose roots have already matured are brought to liberation. And Day-ruling Spirit Lovely Flower Garlands fashions necklaces out of beautiful flowers.

These ten Day-ruling Spirits and others acted as leaders of a countless number of Day-ruling Spirits, and they all brought forth faith and understanding of the wonderful Dharma. Not only did they believe the Buddha’s wonderful Dharma, they deeply understood it and weren’t the least bit muddled. They also practiced it with great vigor and were not lazy at all. Together they constantly and vigorously adorned the palace.

Although people who study Buddhism are protected by the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, still, you have to be careful yourself; you cannot merely rely on the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas to protect you and not fear anything.

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