Heart Sutra (Prajñāpāramitā Hṛdaya)

The Heart of the Buddha´s Teachings:

Form is emptiness and emptiness is form.

Emptiness also is Form: Prajnaparamita Personified

     The term Prajnaparamita is generally translated as the perfection(paramita) of wisdom(prajna).  These second turning teachings on the Prajnaparamita not only reiterate the first turning teachings, such as no-self (anatman), but also introduce the concept of emptiness (shunyata) of phenomenon as well. Emptiness here is not referring to nothingness or voidness but more to a sense of things not existing independently or permanently of any other being or thing. The Heart Sutra  is filled with colorful imagery to illustrate these points in lines such as:

“No eye, no ear, no nose, no tongue, no body, no mind, no appearance.”

     From the Mahayana point of view it is from this great emptiness that Bodhichitta, or awakened mind, can arise. A direct understanding of emptiness as the nature of reality leads to enlightenment. Since this experience of emptiness is the birthplace of the realization of all Buddhas and Bodhisattvas thus Prajnaparamita, the perfect wisdom that sees emptiness, is seen to be the “mother” to all the Buddhas.

The Unequaled Mantra
The Mantra associated with Prajnaparamita and it is also found in the Heart Sutra is:

"Om Gate Gate Paragate Parasamgate Bodhi Svaha"

Which could be loosely translated as " Gone, Gone, Gone beyond, gone thus beyond, awake, so be it!"


This post is dedicated to my mother