Thus have I heard, at one time The Lord was dwelling at Rajagriha, on Vulture-peak mountain, together with a great host of monks and a great host of Bodhisattvas.
At that time the Lord was composed in the concentration on the course of dharmas called 'Profound Illumination.'
At that time also the noble Lord Avalokita, the Bodhisattva and Mahasattva, in the practice of the profound Perfection of Wisdom, looked down; he beheld but five skandhas and that in their own-being they were empty.
Then, through the inspiration of the Buddha, the Venerable Sariputra said to the noble Lord Avalokita, the Bodhisattva and Mahasattva: "How should any child of good family train, who wishes to engage in the practice of the profound Perfection of Wisdom?"
And the noble Lord Avalokita, the Bodhisattva and Mahasattva, spoke to the venerable Sariputra as follows. "Sariputra, any son or daughter of good family who wishes to engage in the practice of the profound Perfection of Wisdom should look upon it thus: he or she beholds but five skandhas and that in their own- being they are empty. Form is Emptiness, Emptiness is form. Emptiness does not differ from form, and form does not differ from Emptiness. Likewise feelings, recognitions, volitions and consciousnesses are empty.
So, Sariputra, all dharmas are Emptiness, without differentiating marks; they are not produced or stopped, not defiled and not immaculate, not deficient and not complete.
Therefore, Sariputra, in Emptiness there is no form, no feeling, no recognition, no volitions, no consciousness; no eye, no ear, no nose, no tongue, no body, no mind; no visible form, no sound, no smell, no taste, no tangible, no mental object; no eye-element, and so forth, up to no mind-element and no mental-consciousness-element; no ignorance and no extinction of ignorance, and so forth, up to no aging and death and no extinction of aging and death; likewise there is no Suffering, Origin, Cessation or Path, no wisdom-knowledge, no attainment and non- attainment.
Therefore Sariputra, because there is no attainment, Bodhisattvas abide relying on the Perfection of Wisdom, without obscurations of thought, and so are unafraid. Transcending perverted views, they attain the end, Nirvana. All Buddhas existing in the three times, relying on the Perfection of Wisdom, fully awaken to the highest, perfect Enlightenment.
Therefore one should know that the mantra of the Perfection of Wisdom is the mantra of great knowledge, the highest mantra, the unequalled mantra, the mantra that allays all suffering, the Truth, since it has nothing wrong. The mantra of the Perfection of Wisdom is proclaimed:
TAD-YATHA; GATE GATE PARAGATE PARASAMGATE BODHI SVAHA!
In this way, Sariputra, should a Bodhisattva and Mahasattva train in the profound Perfection of Wisdom."
Then the Lord rose from that concentration and commended the noble Lord Avalokita, the Bodhisattva and Mahasattva, saying: "Well said, well said, O son of good family! So it is, O son of good family, so it is. Just as you have taught should the profound Perfection of Wisdom be practiced, and the Tathagatas will rejoice. Thus spake the Lord.
The Venerable Sariputra, the noble Lord Avalokita, the Bodhisattva and Mahasattva, and the whole world, that assembly with devas, human beings, asuras and gandharvas, were delighted and applauded the Lord's speech.