autumn leaves

The Heart Sutra

There are various translations of The Heart Sutra which is one the main texts in any Chan/Zen tradition.

There follows the version used on our Chan retreats, and then links to some sites which carry different versions.

The Prajnaparamita Heart Sutra

When the Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara
was coursing in the deep Prajnaparamita,
he perceived that all five skandhas are empty,
thereby transcending all sufferings.
Sariputra, form is not other than emptiness
and emptiness not other than form.
Form is precisely emptiness and emptiness precisely form.
So also are sensation, perception, volition, and consciousness.
Sariputra, this voidness of all dharmas
is not born, not destroyed,
not impure, not pure, does not increase or decrease.
In voidness there is no form,
and no sensation, perception, volition or consciousness;
no eye, ear, nose, tongue, body, mind;
no sight, sound, smell, taste, touch, thought;
there is no realm of the eye
all the way up to no realm of mental cognition.
There is no ignorance and there is no ending of ignorance
through to no aging and death and no ending of aging and death.
There is no suffering, no cause of suffering,
no cessation of suffering, and no path.
There is no wisdom or any attainment.
With nothing to attain, Bodhisattvas relying on Prajnaparamita
have no obstructions in their minds.
Having no obstructions, there is no fear
and departing far from confusion and imaginings,
they reach Ultimate Nirvana.
All past, present and future Buddhas,
relying on Prajnaparamita, attain Anuttara-Samyak-Sambodhi.
Therefore, know that Prajnaparamita
is the great mantra of power,
the great mantra of wisdom, the supreme mantra,
the unequalled mantra,
which is able to remove all sufferings.
It is real and not false.
Therefore recite the mantra of Prajnaparamita:
Gate, Gate, Paragate, Parasamgate, Bodhi Svaha.

Links to a few other Translations of the Heart Sutra