Chanting and Practicing the Heart Sutra – Ep. 304
The Heart Sutra is one of the most profound and widely studied texts in the Buddhist canon. It is recited at the start of teachings, events & as a blessing. In this podcast Robert A.F. Thurman leads a recitation of The Heart Sutra and gives a teaching for all audiences on its connections to the Four Noble Truths and the Buddha’s Eight Fold Path of liberation.
Professor Thurman begins this podcast with an explanation of the Heart Sutra focusing on the the dialog between Shāriputra and Avalokiteśvara in the Buddha’s samadhi field, and it’s connection to Clear Light, Bliss, Relativity and how one can avoid absolutism when thinking about emptiness.
Podcast concludes with Professor Thurman explaining how the practice of reciting The Heart Sutra is the key to understanding its teaching as a tool for mind transformation. He also offers a reading of a passage introducing Samantabhadra Bodhisattva from the third book of The Flower Ornament Sutra, translated by Thomas Cleary.
“The Transcendent Wisdom Heart Sutra, known as The Heart Sutra in all Mahayana Buddhist countries, and The Heart of Wisdom in Tibet, is a concise expression of the profound vision of reality that is the root of liberation from suffering. Tibetan religious all know this by heart and chant is solemnly at the beginning of every ceremony. In addition to a prescription for enlightenment, they consider it the most powerful exorcism, purifier, and developer of merit as well of wisdom.”
Robert A.F. Thurman from Essential Tibetan Buddhism
Professor Thurman’s translation of the Heart Sutra can be found in his book, Essential Tibetan Buddhism, on page 171, under the chapter heading, “Practicing the Liberating Wisdom” though it has evolved a bit since then.
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The songs “Trance Tibet” & ‘Dancing Ling’ by Tenzin Choegyal from the album ‘Heart Sutra‘ (2004) by Ethno Super Lounge are used on the Bob Thurman Podcast with artist’s permission, all rights reserved.