The Avatamsaka Sutra describes the multifold of Buddha fields that are adorned with immeasurable qualities and significances. As the saying goes, “不讀華嚴，不知佛富貴” The extraordinary adornments and richness of Buddha fields far surpass our ordinary imagination. The question is, how can we accomplish such a splendid Buddha field? Here in the Avatamsaka Sutra, the graded path of practice of Bodhisattvas is explained in detail. Among all, the key is "bodhicitta".
There’s a tree analogy of bodhicitta in the sutra: There’s a lone tree in a barren field. If the root is watered, branches, flowers, and fruits will grow and ripen. The barren field symbolizes samsara where beings wander through cyclic existence. The tree is the King of Bodhi Tree. The root represents the phase of ordinary beings whereas the flowers and fruits symbolize Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. For sentient beings to grow and mature, it’d require the water of great compassion.
How so? All tathagatas are the embodiment of great compassion. They engender compassion because of sentient beings. Based on compassion, bodhicitta is inspired. With bodhicitta, they attained the perfect enlightenment. Without sentient beings, none of the Buddhas could have attained the unsurpassable perfect enlightenment.
Every being is our working field to guide them towards Buddhahood. The place of origination is where Buddhahood gets accomplished. What could be the condition of Buddhahood? It is bodhicitta or the state of self-awakening and awakening others. Because we are lost, therefore, we must find ourselves. When we regain the luminosity that is free from delusions, we can pass on the light to other beings. They'd be influenced to recover their luminosity or primordial awareness. Self-awakening is to realize. Awakening others is to inspire others towards realization. The former is also called, "the benefit of self" whereas the latter being "the benefit of others". When the two-fold benefits are perfected, we can accomplish the realization of the omniscient tathagata. Such a state is also named, "anuttara-samyak-sambodhi”.
The practice of Avatamsaka leads one to attain Buddhahood. It encourages sentient beings to engender bodhicitta. Upon the time of their realization, they’d experience the state of “A universe in a flower. A tathagata in a leaf”. May those who cross path with the seed for Buddhahood would propagate great compassion. That way, more sentient beings would have the opportunity for enlightenment. This is the wisdom of life where every seed interacts with one another. The karmic seed of every individual is the memory and dependent arising of each other. However, karmic seeds can be transformed into a chain of wisdom. Such an interconnectedness makes up a universe or a life of wisdom.
LJM’s Blueprint for Attaining Buddhahood: The Four-stage Training— Avatamsaka
The University for Life and Peace – Fulfilling Chan and Manifesting Avatamsaka
Unfolding the Flower of Avatamsaka Dharmapala