Question: How do we prepare ourselves to be able to read the Surangama Sutra and mantra (understanding that it’s the most difficult Sutra and mantra in buddhism) must we first read certain mantras and sutras as well as a certain level of meditation? And how do we know that we have mastered, correctly understood and correctly interpreted the sutras that we’ve been reading all along?”
The Shurangama Sutra is probably the most difficult sutra for any Buddhist. I myself have not yet completed reading it. Most sutras are very abstract and comprehensive, so understanding their true meaning can sometimes be very difficult without a skilled teacher to help guide you.
Though I have understood the concept and main idea of the Shurangama Sutra, it is not one of my main sutras of study. If it is a sutra that you truly want to study, then you will need to stick to it for the rest of your life. But prior to that, some other helpful sutras to understand are the Lotus sutra, Diamond sutra, Lankavatara sutra, and of course a solid foundation of samadhi concentration and meditation.
Of course sometimes it can be difficult to recognize when/if we’ve “mastered” a sutra or meditation. For me at least, I know I have a high understanding of a sutra when I can recognize its teachings in daily life or during meditation.
I would definitely NOT try to rush into the Shurangama sutra. If we don’t have a solid foundation and understanding of Buddhist philosophy, psychology, and meditation, then any high sutra like the Shurangama will only confuse and discourage us from the path.
YouTube is an AMAZING resource to utilize to look up teachings from great buddhist teachers.
Smile and be well!