KINH VU LAN BỒN
(The Sutra in English below)
1. Phật nói Kinh Vu Lan Bồn
Ta từng nghe lời tạc như vầy:
Một thuở nọ Thế-tôn an-trụ
Xá-vệ thành Kỳ-thụ viên trung,
Mục-liên mới đặng lục-thông,
Muốn cho cha mẹ khỏi vòng trầm-luân.
Công dưỡng-dục thâm-ân dốc trả,
Nghĩa sanh thành đạo cả mong đền,
Làm con hiếu-hạnh vi tiên,
Bèn dùng huệ-nhãn dưới trên kiếm tầm.
Thấy vong-mẫu sanh làm ngạ-quỷ,
Không uống ăn tiều-tụy hình-hài.
Mục-liên thấy vậy bi-ai,
Biết mẹ đói khát ai-hoài tình thâm.
2. Lo phẩm-vật đem dâng từ-mẫu,
Đặng đỡ lòng cực khổ bấy lâu.
Thấy cơm mẹ rất lo âu,
Tay tả che đậy, hữu hầu bốc ăn.
Lòng bỏn-xẻn tiền-căn chưa dứt,
Sợ chúng ma cướp dựt của bà.
Cơm đưa chưa tới miệng đà,
Hóa thành than lửa nuốt mà đặng đâu.
Thấy như vậy âu-sầu thê-thảm,
Mục-kiền-liên bi-cảm xót thương,
Mau mau về đến giảng-đường,
Bạch cùng sư-phụ tìm phương giải nàn.
3. Phật mới bảo rõ ràng căn-cội,
Rằng mẹ ông gốc tội rất sâu.
Dầu ông thần-lực nhiệm-mầu,
Một mình không thể ai cầu được đâu.
Lòng hiếu-thảo của ông dầu lớn,
Tiếng vang đồn thấu đến cửu-thiên
Cùng là các bực Thần-kỳ
Tà, ma, ngoại-đạo, bốn vì Thiên-vương
Cộng ba cõi sáu phương tu-tập,
Cũng không phương cứu-tế mẹ ngươị
Muốn cho cứu đặng mạng người,
Phải nhờ thần-lực của mười phương Tăng.
4. Pháp cứu-tế ta toan giải nói
Cho mọi người thoát khỏi ách-nàn
Bèn kêu Mục-thị đến gần,
Truyền cho diệu-pháp ân-cần thiết thi
Rằm tháng bảy là ngày Tự-tứ
Mười phương Tăng đều dự lễ này
Phải toan sắm sửa chớ chầy
Thức ăn trăm món trái cây năm màu
Lại phải sắm giường nằm nệm lót
Cùng thau, bồn, đèn đuốc, nhang, dầu,
Món ăn tinh-sạch báu mầu
Đựng trong bình-bát vọng-cầu kính dâng
Chư Đại-đức mười phương thọ-thực
Trong bảy đời sẽ đặng siêu thiên
Lại thêm cha mẹ hiện-tiền
Đặng nhờ phước-lực tiêu-khiên ách-nàn.
5. Vì ngày ấy Thánh-tăng đều đủ
Dầu ở đâu cũng tụ-hội về.
Như người Thiền-định sơn-khê
Tránh điều phiền-não chăm về thiền-na
Hoặc người đặng bốn tòa đạo quả
Công tu-hành nguyện thỏa vô-sanh
Hoặc người thọ hạ kinh-hành
Chẳng ham quyền-quý ẩn-danh lâm-tòng
Hoặc người đặng lục-thông tấn-phát
Và những hàng Duyên-giác, Thanh-văn
Hoặc chư Bồ-tát mười phương
Hiện hình làm sãi ở gần chúng-sanh
Đều trì giới rất thanh, rất tịnh
Đạo-đức dày, chánh-định chơn-tâm
Tất cả các bực Thánh, Phàm
Đồng lòng thọ-lãnh bát cơm lục-hòa
6. Người nào có sắm ra vật-thực
Đặng cúng-dường Tự-tứ Tăng thời
Hiện-tiền phụ-mẫu của người
Bà con quyến-thuộc thảy đều nhờ ơn
Tam-đồ khổ chắc rằng ra khỏi
Cảnh thanh-nhàn hưởng-thọ tự-nhiên.
Như còn cha mẹ hiện-tiền
Đó nhờ cũng đặng bá niên thọ-trường
Như cha mẹ bảy đời quá-vãng
Sẽ hóa-sanh về cõi thiên-cung
Người thời tuấn-tú hình-dung
Hào-quang chiếu sáng khắp cùng châu-thân
7. Phật dạy bảo mười phương Tăng-chúng
Phải tuân theo thể-thức sau này:
Trước khi thọ thực đàn chay
Phải cầu chú-nguyện cho người tín-gia.
Cầu thất-thế mẹ cha thí-chủ
Định tâm-thần quán đủ đừng quên
Cho xong ý-định hành-thiền
Mới dùng phẩm-vật đàn-tiền hiến-dâng.
Khi thọ-dụng nên an vật-thực
Trước Phật-đài hoặc tự tháp trung:
Chư Tăng chú nguyện viên dung
Sau rồi tự-tiện thọ dùng bữa trưa
8. Pháp cứu-tế Phật vừa nói dứt
Mục-liên cùng Bồ-tát chư Tăng
Đồng nhau tỏ dạ vui mừng
Mục-liên cũng hết khóc thương rầu buồn
Mục-liên mẫu cũng trong ngày ấy
Kiếp khổ về ngạ-quỷ được tan
Mục-liên bạch với Phật rằng:
“Mẹ con nhờ sức Thánh-Tăng khỏi nàn
Lại cũng nhờ oai thần Tam-bảo
Bằng chẳng thì nạn khổ khó ra
Như sau đệ-tử xuất-gia
Vu-lan-bồn pháp dùng mà độ sanh
Độ cha mẹ còn đương tại thế
Hoặc bảy đời có thể đặng không ?”
Phật rằng: “Lời hỏi rất thông
Ta vừa muốn nói con dùng hỏi theo
9. Thiện-nam-tử, tỳ-kheo nam nữ
Cùng quốc-vương, thái-tử, đại-thần
Tam-công, tể-tướng, bá-quan
Cùng hàng lê-thứ vạn dân cõi trần
Như chí muốn đền ơn cha mẹ
Hiện-tại cùng thất-thế tình thâm
Đến rằm tháng bảy mỗi năm
Sau khi kiết-hạ chư Tăng tựu về
Chính ngày ấy Phật đà hoan-hỉ
Phải sắm sanh bá vị cơm canh
Đựng trong bình-bát tinh-anh
Chờ giờ Tự-tứ chúng Tăng cúng-dường
Đặng cầu-nguyện song-đường trường-thọ
Chẳng ốm đau, cũng chẳng khổ chi
Cùng cầu thất-thế đồng thì
Lìa nơi ngạ-quỷ sanh về nhơn, thiên
Đặng hưởng phước nhân duyên vui đẹp
Lại xa lìa nạn khổ cực thân
Môn-sanh Phật-tử ân-cần
Hạnh tu hiếu-thuận phải cần phải chuyên
10. Thường cầu-nguyện thung-huyên an-hảo
Cùng bảy đời phụ-mẫu siêu-sanh
Ngày rằm tháng bảy mỗi năm
Vì lòng hiếu-thảo thâm-ân phải đền
Lễ cứu-tế chí-thành sắp đặt
Ngỏ cúng-dường chư Phật chư Tăng
Ấy là báo đáp thù ân
Sanh-thành dưỡng-dục song-thân buổi đầu
Đệ-tử Phật lo âu gìn-giữ
Mới phải là Thích-tử Thiền-môn
Vừa nghe dứt pháp Lan-bồn
Môn-sanh tứ-chúng thảy đồng hỉ-hoan
Mục-liên với bốn ban Phật-tử
Nguyện một lòng tín-sự phụng-hành !
1. The Yu-lan-p’en Sutra
Thus have I heard.
Once, the Buddha resided in the kingdom of Sravasti,among the Jetavana trees in the garden of Anathapindika. The Great Mu-chien-lien began to obtain the six penetrations. Desiring to save his parents to repay the kindness they had shown him in nursing and feeding him, he used his divine eye to observethe worlds.
He saw his departed mother reborn among the hungry ghosts: she never saw food or drink, and her skin hung off her bones.
2. Mu-lien took pity, filled his bowl with rice, and sent it to his mother as an offering. When his mother received the bowl of rice, she used her left hand to guard the bowl and her right hand to gather up the rice, but before the food entered her mouth it changed into flaming coals, so in the end she could not eat.
Mu-lien cried out in grief and wept tears. He rushed back to tell the Buddha and laid out everything as it has happened.
3. The Buddha said, “The roots of your mother’s sins are deep and tenacious. It is not within your power as a single individual to do anything about it. Even though the fame of your filial devotion moves heaven and earth, still spirits of heaven and spirits of earth, harmful demons and masters of the outer paths, monks and the four spirit kings of heaven cannot do anything about it.
You must rely on the mighty spiritual power of the assembled monks of the ten directions in order to obtain her deliverance.
4. I shall now preach for you the method of salvation, so that all beings in trouble may leave sadness and suffering, and the impediments caused by sin be wiped away.”
The Buddha told Mu-lien, “On the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when the assembled monks of the ten directions release themselves, for the sake of seven generations of ancestors, your current parents, and those in distress, you should gather food of the one hundred flavors and five kinds of fruit, basins for washing and rinsing, incense, oil lamps and candles, and mattresses and beđing; take the sweetest, prettiest things in the world and place them in a bowl and offer it to the assembled monks, those of great virtue of the ten directions.
5. On this day, the entire assembly of saints – those in the mountains practicing meditation and concentration; those who have attained the fruit of the four paths; those who practice pacing under trees; those who use the six penetrations to be free; those who convert others, hear preaching, and awaken to causality; and the great men, those bodhisattvas of the ten stages who provisionally manifest the form of a bhiksu – all of those who are part of the great assembly shall with one mind receive the patra [bowl] of rice.
[A monk who] possesses fully the purity of the precepts and the Way of the assembly of saints – his virtue is vast indeed.
6. When you make offerings to these kinds of monks as they release themselves, then your current parents, seven generations of ancestors, and six kinds of relatives will obtain release from suffering in the three evil paths of rebirth; at that moment they will be liberated and clothed and fed naturally.
If one’s parents are living, they will have one hundred years of joy and happiness. If they are deceased, then seven generations of ancestors will be reborn in the heavens; born freely through transformation, they will enter into the light of heavenly flowers and receive unlimited joy.”
7. Then the Buddha decreed that the assembled monks of the ten directions should first chant prayers on behalf of the family of the donor for seven generations of ancestors, that they should practice meditation and concentrate their thoughts, and that they should then receive the food.
In receiving the bowls, they should first place them in front of the Buddha’s stupa; when the assembled monks have finished chanting prayers, they may then individually partake of the food.
8. At this time the bhiksu Mu-lien and the assembly of great bodhisattvas rejoiced. Mu-lien’s sorrowful tears ended and the sound of his crying died out.
Then, on that very day, Mu-lien’s mother gained release from a kalpa of suffering as a hungry ghost.
Then Mu-lien told the Buddha, “The parents who gave birth to me, your disciple, are able to receive the power of the merit of the Three Jewels because of the mighty spiritual power of the assembly of monks. But all of the future disciples of the Buddha who practice filial devotion, may they or may they not also present yu-lan bowls as required to save their parents as well as seven generations of ancestors?”
The Buddha said, “Excellent! This question pleases me very much. It is just what I would like to preach, so listen well!
9. My good sons, if there are bhiksus, bhiksunis, kings of states, princes, sons of kings, great ministers, counselors, dignitaries of the three ranks, any government officials, or the majority of common people who practice filial compassion, then on behalf of their current parents and the past seven generations of ancestors, on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, the day on which Buddhas rejoice, the day on which monks release themselves, they must all place food and drink of the one hundred flavors inside the yu-lan bowl and donate it to monks of the ten directions who are releasing themselves.
When the prayers are finished, one’s present parents will attain long life, passing one hundred years without sickness and without any of the torments of suffering, while seven generations of ancestors will leave the sufferings of hungry ghosthood, attaining rebirth among gods and humans and blessings without limit.”
The Buddha told all of the good sons and good daughters,
10. “Those disciples of the Buddha who practice filial devotion must in every moment of consciousness maintain the thought of their parents, including seven generations of ancestors. Each year on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, out of filial devotion and compassionate consideration for the parents who gave birth to them and for seven generations of ancestors, they should always make a yu-lan bowl and donate it to the Buddha and Sangha to repay the kindness bestowed by parents in nurturing and caring for them. All disciples of the Buddha must carry out this law.”
Upon hearing what the Buddha preached, the bhiksu Mu-lien and the four classes of disciples rejoiced and put it into practice.
Bản dịch của Vạn Phật Thánh Thành:
THE SAGELY CITY OF TEN THOUSAND BUDDHAS
Celebration of Ullambana
Ullambana is the day for helping those beings who are suffering so that they can obtain liberation.
The Venerable Mahamaudgalyayana, one of the great disciples of the Buddha, was foremost in spiritual powers. When he obtained the six spiritual penetrations, he searched for his departed mother. He discovered that she had fallen into the hells. Although the Venerable Maudgalyayana had great spiritual powers, he could not save his mother. Thereupon he knelt before his teacher, the Buddha, and beseeched the World Honored One to help.
The Buddha explained that his mother was suffering in the hells because of her deep offenses and so the Venerable Maudgalyayana must rely on the united strength of the Sangha of the ten directions in order to save his mother.
The Buddha said, “On the fifteenth day of the seventh month you should make an offering of the finest vegetarian foods and drinks and offer it to the Buddha and the Sangha. By making this offering, the Way-virtue of the high Sanghans of the ten directions will then be able to save your mother.”
The Venerable Mahamaudgalyayana did as the Buddha had instructed. Due to the strength of the greatly virtuous ones of the ten directions, his mother was reborn in the heavens. Since then, the Ullambana festival has become an annual Buddhist celebration and a day upon which anyone can rescue his or her parents of seven lives past.
The Venerable Master Hsuan Hua taught:
“No teaching is apart from Filiality. Apart from filiality, there is no teaching. When the limitless lessons under the sky are summarized, it is just this one lesson. This lesson encompasses limitless learning. Study this lesson to perfection and other lessons will also be completed.”
To read this entire Buddhist text, please click on: The Buddha Speaks the Ullambana Sutra or below text:
The Buddha Speaks the Ullambana Sutra
Thus I have heard, at one time, the Buddha dwelt at Shravasti in the Garden of the Benefactor of Orphans and the Solitary. Mahamaudgalyayana had just obtained the six penetrations and wished to cross over his father and mother to repay their kindness for raising him. Thus, using his Way Eye, he regarded the world and saw that his deceased mother had been born among the hungry ghosts. Having neither food nor drink, she was but skin and bones. Mahamaudgalyayana felt deep pity and sadness, filled a bowl with food, and went to provid for his mother. She got the bowl, screened it with her left hand, and with her right hand made a fist of food. But before it entered her mouth, it turned into burning coals which could not be eaten. Mahamaudgalyayana called out and wept sorrowfully, and hastened to return to the Buddy to set forth all of this.
The Buddha said, “Your mother’s offenses are deep and firmly rooted. You alone do not have enough power. Although your filial sounds move heaven and earth, the heaven spirits, the earth spirits, twisted demons, and those outside the way, Brahmans, and the Four Heavenly King Gods are also without sufficient strength. The awesome spiritual power of the assembled Sangha of the ten directions is necessary for liberation to be attained. I shall now speak a Dharma of rescue which causes all those in difficulty to leave worry and suffering, and to eradicate obstacles from offenses.”The Buddha told Maudgalyayana, “The fifteenth day of the seventh month is the Pravarana Day for the assembled Sangha of the ten directions. For the sake of fathers and mothers of seven generations past, as well as for fathers and mothers of the present who are in distress, you should prepare an offering of clean basins full of hundreds of flavors and the five fruits, and other offerings of incense, oil, lamps, candles, beds, and bedding, all the best of the world, to the greatly virtuous assembled Sangha of the ten directions.
“On that day, all the holy assembly, whether in the mountains practicing dhyana samadhi, or obtaininging the four fruits of the Way, or walking beneath trees, or using the independence of the six penetrations to teach and transform Sound Hearers and Those Enlightened to Conditions, or provisionally manifesting as Bhikshus when in fact they are Great Bodhisattvas on the Tenth Ground-all complete with pure precepts and ocean-like virtue of the holy Way–should gather in a great assembly and all of like mind receive the Pravarana food.
“If one thus makes offerings to these Pravarana Sanghans, one’s present father and mother, parents of seven generations past, as well as the six kinds of close relatives will escape from the three paths of suffering, and at that time attain release. Their clothing and food will spontaneously appear. If the parents are still alive, they will have wealth and blessings for a hundred years. Parents of seven generations past will be born in the heavens. Transformationally born, they will independently enter the celestial flower light, and experience limitless bliss.”
At that time the Buddha commanded the assembled Sangha of the ten directions to recite mantras and vows for the sake of the donor’s fumily, for parents of seven generations. After practicing dhyana concentration, the Sangha accepted the food. When they first received the basin, they placed it before the Buddha in the stupa. When the assembled Sangha had finished the mantras and vows they received the food.
At that time the Bhikshu Maudgalyayana and the assembly of Great Bodhisattvas were all extremely delighted and the sorrowful sound of Maudgalyayana’s crying ceased. At that time Maudgalyayana’s mother obtained liberation from one kalpa of suffering as a hungry ghost. Maudgalyayana addressed the Buddha and said, “This disciple’s parents have received the power of the merit and virtue of the Triple Jewel, because of the awesome spiritual power of the assembled Sangha. If in the future the Buddha’s disciples practice filiality by offerins up the Ullambana basins, will they be able to cross over their present fathers and mothers as well us those of seven generations past?”
The Buddha replied “Good indeed! I am happy you asked that question. I just wanted to speak about that and now you have also asked about it. Good man, if Bhikshus, Bhikshunis, kings, crown princes, great ministers, great officials, cabinet members, the hundred ministers, and the tens of thousands of citizens wish to practice compassionate filial conduct, for the sake of the parents who bore them, as well as for the sake of fathers and mothers of seven lives past, on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, the day of the Buddha’s Delight, the day of the Sangha’s Pravarana, they all should place hundreds of flavors of foods in the Ullambana basins, and offer them to the Pravarana Sangha of the ten directions. They should vow to cause the length of their present fathers’ and mothers’ lives to reach a hundred years without illnesses, without sufferings, afflictions, or worries, and also vow to cause seven generations of fathers and mothers to leave the sufferings of the hungry ghosts, to be born among humans and gods, and to have blessings and bliss without limit.”
The Buddha told all the good men and good women, “Those disciples of the Buddha who cultivate filial conduct should in thought after thought, constantly recall their present fathers and mothers when making offerings, as well as the fathers and mothers of seven lives past, and for their sakes perform the offering of the Ullambana basin to the Buddha and the Sangha and thus repay the loving kindness of the parents who raised and nourished them.”
At that time the Bhikshu Maudgalyayana and the four-fold assembly of disciples, hearing what the Buddha said, practiced it with delight.
End of the Buddha Speaks the Ullambana Sutra.
The Ullambana Sutra translated by The Buddhist Text Translation Society
Copyright © Buddhist Text Translation Society