One characteristic of Mahayana bodhisattva precepts is the idea of “self-ordination”. In the case where one has no teacher, self ordination means vowing to keep the Buddhist precepts personally. Although in self ordination the spiritual aspect is stressed, there also need to be certain conditions for it to take place. This characteristic is explained in the idea of “visionary experience”, found in the 23rd precept of the Fanwang jing. This essay examines the influence of selfordination as found in the Fanwang jing, taking into account the Huayan jing and the point of view of practice.
Visionary experience is built up through practice. In this way, the visionary experience is based on practice, and the person who completes “self ordination” follows the influence of the Huayan jing in the Fanwang jing, hence bodhisattva non-regression is necessary for visionary experience. The disciple of the Buddha is penitent, practices and sees the visionary experience as proof of ordination. Accordingly, the visionary experience found in “self ordination” of the Fanwang jing should be understood from the point of view of practice.