Self-conceited understanding leads to the ruin of intelligence


The superiority of the universal vehicle of enlightenment is proven by the fact that those of petty aspiration, those of very lowly elements, and those surrounded by narrow-minded friends do not have faith in this perfect Teaching (Dharma) which teaches magnificence and profundity so well.

Yet one whose aspiration is petty develops on that account a lowly element which permeates his fundamental consciousness. He tends to surround himself with narrow-minded friends whose aspiration and elements are similar to his own – such characters are not in short supply in the modern times: many who claim to teach the ultimate yet themselves aren’t totally freed from the grips of beginningless ignorance that is akin to all sentient beings. If such a person has no faith in the teaching of the universal vehicle, wherein magnificence and profundity are well taught, that in itself proves the excellence of that universal vehicle.

One who has gained knowledge through only one course of study or practice and then reviles another which he has not studied, is a fool. How can he be certain it is worthless when a boundless variety of learning still remains? Granting a lack of faith in the universal vehicle, the indiscriminate rejection of unstudied discourses (wisdoms) is irrational. That person is a fool who gains knowledge through one course of study and then reviles another study just in general. How can one be certain that the universal vehicle is not the word of the perfectly awakened one, when a boundless variety of learning still remains? One has no strength other than learning, so it would be wrong to reject what has not been learned. What has been studied should be properly incorporated in conscientious attitude. 

The meaning of the discourses (wisdoms) being too literally construed, self-conceited understanding leads to the ruin of intelligence. One rejects the well taught and so suffers a defeat, confused by hostility toward the teaching.“Self-conceited understanding” is complacent attachment to one’s own view, not seeking the true import from the wise. It leads to the ruin of intelligence, due to the loss suffered from failure to attain the intuition attuned with reality. Such a one rejects the well-taught explanations of the teaching, thereby gaining great demerit and so suffering a defeat. The confusion of hostility toward the teaching leads to the harmful evolutionary action of abandonment of the teaching; this is its major drawback. Hostility toward the teachings is irrational, even when one does not know that their meaning is not literal.

A hostile mentality is naturally deficient (reproachable), not fit to apply even to the faulty, not to mention the teaching, even when in doubt. Therefore, simple impartiality is preferable, for it is free of fault.

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