The Four Great Vows

Several members of my Zen Center and I are studying to become dharma teachers. (“Dharma” is best translated as “teachings,” thought I’ve seen it as “law.”) We’re beginning at the beginning: studying vows. One set that we say after each evening’s meditation is the Four Great Vows. Tonight we received some wonderful instruction on what these really mean at various levels

Sentient beings are numberless; we vow to save them all.

Delusions are endless; we vow to cut through them all.

The teachings are infinite; we vow to learn them all.

The Buddha way is inconceivable; we vow to attain it.

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