The Lotus Sutra - 17 Benefits of Responding with Joy - 1 When the people hear this Law, all are able to become arhats
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
The Lotus sutra – translated by Burton Watson
Suppose there is a great dispenser of charity
who bestows goods on immeasurable multitudes,
doing this for a full eighty years,
responding to each person's desires.
Seeing the signs of decrepitude and old age,
the white hair and wrinkled face,
the missing teeth, the withered form,
he thinks, "Their death is not far off;
I must now teach them
so they can gain the fruits of the way!"
Immediately for their sake he employs an expedient means,
preaching the true Law of nirvana:
"Nothing in this world is lasting or firm
but all are like bubbles, foam, heat shimmer.
Therefore all of you must quickly
learn to hate it and be gone!"
When the people hear this Law,
all are able to become arhats
endowed with the six transcendental powers,
the three understandings and eight emancipations.
But the fiftieth person
who hears one verse [of the Lotus Sutra] and responds with joy
gains blessings that are far greater,
beyond description by simile or parable.