A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Kaji » Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:17 am

I am not sure if this has been posted already; if so I apologise. I think this is something worth sharing to all those who would like to be reborn into the Western Pure Land.

In a lecture by Ven Fun Zai (Cantonese pronunciation, "Kuan Ji" in Mandarin), he taught that conventional methods of contemplating Amitabha Buddha (nienfo) by name recitation are great - they prepare you for your final moment in life to focus on nienfo to ensure rebirth into WPL. He very briefly taught one particular method that is particularly skillful in ensuring success in WPL rebirth...

Simply, recite Amitabha Buddha's name ten times immediately when you wake up every morning. This has to be done right after waking up, before you get out of bed and even better before you open your eyes. There, nail this one and you can be confident that you will be reborn into WPL when your time in this world is up.

How does it work? When we die, our bardo leaves our body and may feel like just having woken up - a bit confused and not 100% mentally alert. If you have developed a habit of nienfo every time you are in this state (i.e., every time you wake up), you will do the same when you die. This should work even if you die accidentally and unexpectedly.

Give it a try! If it works for you, would you be kind enough to return here from WPL to confirm with the rest of us?
:namaste:
Namas triya-dhvikānāṃ sarva tathāgatānām!
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby tomamundsen » Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:26 am

Kaji wrote:I am not sure if this has been posted already; if so I apologise. I think this is something worth sharing to all those who would like to be reborn into the Western Pure Land.

In a lecture by Ven Fun Zai (Cantonese pronunciation, "Kuan Ji" in Mandarin), he taught that conventional methods of contemplating Amitabha Buddha (nienfo) by name recitation are great - they prepare you for your final moment in life to focus on nienfo to ensure rebirth into WPL. He very briefly taught one particular method that is particularly skillful in ensuring success in WPL rebirth...

Simply, recite Amitabha Buddha's name ten times immediately when you wake up every morning. This has to be done right after waking up, before you get out of bed and even better before you open your eyes. There, nail this one and you can be confident that you will be reborn into WPL when your time in this world is up.

How does it work? When we die, our bardo leaves our body and may feel like just having woken up - a bit confused and not 100% mentally alert. If you have developed a habit of nienfo every time you are in this state (i.e., every time you wake up), you will do the same when you die. This should work even if you die accidentally and unexpectedly.

Give it a try! If it works for you, would you be kind enough to return here from WPL to confirm with the rest of us?
:namaste:

Cool, thanks! It makes sense.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Kaji » Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:17 am

tomamundsen wrote:Cool, thanks! It makes sense.

If you are going to try this method, let me know how you go with it. In my experience I found it to be not as easy as I thought in practice. Falling asleep while nienfo'ing is not enough to guarantee that you will nienfo as soon as you wake up.

I guess if circumstance allows you can set a smart phone to be an alarm clock and use your recorded nienfo voice as the alarm tone. That should be a good reminder to nienfo when it wakes you up. Once you have developed the habit you can try it without the alarm tone. My family wouldn't let me use this method, but what I can do is to condition myself to nienfo every time I hear my baby daughter cries, since she has now become my new alarm clock. :rolling:
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Nosta » Tue Sep 25, 2012 7:10 pm

Ehehe, its curious because one day i tought on the opposite idea: reciting Amitabha while falling asleep. My idea was that dying is like falling asleep, so you need to train your mind to fall asleep without stopping recitations (i gave up from such difficult task). Perhaps the best thing is to learn how to fall asleep imediatly in a Lucid Dream and just then you could do my idea.

The idea you expose its the opposite and i think thats very interesting. I never taught that being in Bardo is like waking up because Bardo must be a so dman confusing experience that can only be compared to a dream.

I will try to do your idea, its much more easy than mine (i think!).
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby sinweiy » Wed Sep 26, 2012 2:00 am

yes, it's the Ten recitation method by MCK. it's effective for people with little time and working.

recite Amitabha's name just ten times with an undisturbed mind will not cause wandering thoughts to enter. then u can carry on doing your things.

http://www.amtb-usa.org/eten-1.htm

the main aim is to keep reminded of reciting every now and then until the end of life. it's to distribute your recitation into smaller period through out your life. not like one who only reciting a lot once and prolong don't recite anymore. it's like the analogy of boiling water. when u boil once and stop, it'll cool down, while the Ten recitation method is like using small fire to keep the water warm always. and like brewing chinese medicine , the longer u brew the better it is. :)

The Ten-Recitation Method

The Ten-Recitation method is a simple, convenient, and effective way of practicing Buddha Recitation. It is especially suitable for those who find little time in the day for cultivation. Practicing the Ten-Recitation method helps us to regain mindfulness of Amitabha Buddha and brings us peace and clarity in the present moment.

We should begin this practice the first thing in the morning, as soon as we wake up. We should sit up straight and clearly recite Amitabha's name ten times with an undisturbed mind, whether out loud or silently to ourselves. We should repeat this process eight more times for the rest of the day:



At Breakfast
Before Work
At Lunch Break
At Lunch
After Lunch Break
Getting Off Work
At Dinner
At Bedtime
Altogether, we practice this method nine times a day, every day. The key point is regularity; we must not practice one day and fail to practice the next day. If this practice is maintained steadily, the cultivator will soon feel his purity of mind increase, and his/her wisdom grow.

Diligent practice of the Ten-Recitation method, together with deep faith and determined vows, can ensure fulfillment of our wish to reach the Western Pure Land of Infinite Life and Infinite Light. We hope everyone will practice accordingly.

Amitabha!


ps: but for me , u don't have to follow so strictly the timing(as that will be quite stressful), just recite when u have free time in a constantly reminded way.
_/\_
Amituofo!

"Enlightenment is to turn around and see MY own mistake, Other's mistake is also my mistake. Others are right even if they are wrong. i'm wrong even if i'm right. " - Master Chin Kung
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby sinweiy » Wed Sep 26, 2012 2:06 am

another thing, since when we die, karma can be one obstruction hindering one's rebirth, if possible attend an 8 precepts retreat during this life. as 8 precepts is great wholesome karma that will bring up one's confidence.
_/\_
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"Enlightenment is to turn around and see MY own mistake, Other's mistake is also my mistake. Others are right even if they are wrong. i'm wrong even if i'm right. " - Master Chin Kung
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Kaji » Wed Sep 26, 2012 11:27 am

sinweiy wrote:yes, it's the Ten recitation method by MCK. it's effective for people with little time and working.

recite Amitabha's name just ten times with an undisturbed mind will not cause wandering thoughts to enter. then u can carry on doing your things.

http://www.amtb-usa.org/eten-1.htm

the main aim is to keep reminded of reciting every now and then until the end of life. it's to distribute your recitation into smaller period through out your life. not like one who only reciting a lot once and prolong don't recite anymore. it's like the analogy of boiling water. when u boil once and stop, it'll cool down, while the Ten recitation method is like using small fire to keep the water warm always. and like brewing chinese medicine , the longer u brew the better it is. :)

ps: but for me , u don't have to follow so strictly the timing(as that will be quite stressful), just recite when u have free time in a constantly reminded way.

Hi sinweiy, what does "MCK" stand for?

There are two types of Ten Recitation Methods as taught by Ven Yin Guang. The first type, which he suggested to do in the morning after rinsing your mouth, is not the method I shared in my first post in this thread. This Ten Recitation Method is done like this:
1. Inhale fully.
2. Recite the name of Amitabha Buddha as many times as you can with that one breath, without bothering to count.
3. Inhale again and repeat nine more times.
Ven Yin Guang taught that this is great for health when done in the morning shortly after getting out of bed.

The second method according to Ven Yin Guang's teachings is more precisely called the "Count-to-Ten Contemplation Method". This can be used in conjunction with different ways of nienfo - whether you recite out loud or silently in your mind, whether you nienfo while seated or walking or doing daily activities. You nienfo in sets of ten, but do not keep count of how many sets of ten you have done. This method eliminates the need for mala beads.

The "trick" that I shared in this thread is a particular usage of the Count-to-Ten Contemplation Method, that is done immediately upon every time you wake up.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Kaji » Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:01 pm

sinweiy wrote:another thing, since when we die, karma can be one obstruction hindering one's rebirth, if possible attend an 8 precepts retreat during this life. as 8 precepts is great wholesome karma that will bring up one's confidence.

Yes, it is a great idea to remove or reduce karmic obstacles to rebirth in the Pure Land, or any Buddhist practice for that matter. Taking and abiding by precepts, and even better the monk and nun ones, is one way. Repentance is another great way. In general, refrain from negative deeds and accumulate merit. Remember to share the merit with others, especially your karmic debtors.

Developing one's ability to overcome karmic obstacles, such as cultivating wisdom, compassion, forbearance, skillful means, etc., is also essential.

Don't forget to ask Buddha and Bodhisattva for help with the above.

I think to continue our discussion on how to overcome karmic obstacles we should do so in a new thread.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby sinweiy » Thu Sep 27, 2012 1:11 am

Kaji wrote:Hi sinweiy, what does "MCK" stand for?


Master Chin Kung. :smile:
_/\_
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Kaji » Thu Sep 27, 2012 2:55 am

sinweiy wrote:
Kaji wrote:Hi sinweiy, what does "MCK" stand for?


Master Chin Kung. :smile:

Ah, right, thanks.

The notion of "Ten Recitation" is first mentioned in the Infinite Life Sutra, in one of Amitabha's vows. In recent times and as far as I know, the practical application "Ten Recitation Method" and the "Count-to-Ten Recitation Method" are first introduced by Ven Yin Guang.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby cj39 » Thu Sep 27, 2012 3:47 am

Have you tried keeping a dream journal? I have for the last couple of months and frequently I will dream of writing before I actually wake up. If I make it a point to write out the nembutsu every morning upon waking up pretty soon it should be the first thing on my mind when my eyes open. Any way, that's the theory. I am going to give it a try.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Kaji » Thu Sep 27, 2012 4:12 am

cj39 wrote:Have you tried keeping a dream journal? I have for the last couple of months and frequently I will dream of writing before I actually wake up. If I make it a point to write out the nembutsu every morning upon waking up pretty soon it should be the first thing on my mind when my eyes open. Any way, that's the theory. I am going to give it a try.

That's a nifty idea too, easy to implement for those who are already keeping a dream journal. Please let us know if it works well. This can also work for people with dream signs (things, people or events you frequently encounter in your dreams) - whenever you see one you contemplate Amitabha, thus helping to remind you to do the same the moment you wake up.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Kaji » Tue Oct 02, 2012 4:34 am

Nosta wrote:Ehehe, its curious because one day i tought on the opposite idea: reciting Amitabha while falling asleep. My idea was that dying is like falling asleep, so you need to train your mind to fall asleep without stopping recitations (i gave up from such difficult task).

In the last few days I tried to keep on contemplating Amitabha's name while falling asleep, definitely not easy. I can recollect that just before my mind drifted off to sleep, the Amitabha's name - the thought that I tried to maintain - "shape-shifted" into other random thoughts.

Nosta wrote:Perhaps the best thing is to learn how to fall asleep imediatly in a Lucid Dream and just then you could do my idea.

The idea you expose its the opposite and i think thats very interesting. I never taught that being in Bardo is like waking up because Bardo must be a so dman confusing experience that can only be compared to a dream.

In lucid dreams, do you think we can recite Amitabha's name as a reality check? That is, in a dream if we gather our mental strength to contemplate Amitabha, like a Pure Land practitioner should in reality anyway, would we become lucid in that dream? Now, when our body has died, if our bardo do the same and recite Amitabha's name ten times we should be escorted to his Pure Land - do we have to take this into account when trying to practise in our dreams? How? I don't know - let's hear ideas.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Nosta » Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:26 pm

Kaji wrote:
Nosta wrote:Ehehe, its curious because one day i tought on the opposite idea: reciting Amitabha while falling asleep. My idea was that dying is like falling asleep, so you need to train your mind to fall asleep without stopping recitations (i gave up from such difficult task).

In the last few days I tried to keep on contemplating Amitabha's name while falling asleep, definitely not easy. I can recollect that just before my mind drifted off to sleep, the Amitabha's name - the thought that I tried to maintain - "shape-shifted" into other random thoughts.

Nosta wrote:Perhaps the best thing is to learn how to fall asleep imediatly in a Lucid Dream and just then you could do my idea.

The idea you expose its the opposite and i think thats very interesting. I never taught that being in Bardo is like waking up because Bardo must be a so dman confusing experience that can only be compared to a dream.

In lucid dreams, do you think we can recite Amitabha's name as a reality check? That is, in a dream if we gather our mental strength to contemplate Amitabha, like a Pure Land practitioner should in reality anyway, would we become lucid in that dream? Now, when our body has died, if our bardo do the same and recite Amitabha's name ten times we should be escorted to his Pure Land - do we have to take this into account when trying to practise in our dreams? How? I don't know - let's hear ideas.


Recitation as a reality check? Perhaps...Honestly i dont know how to become lucid in a dream. I mean, i know the theory but i am not used to do that. I know that one can do reality checks, and we should use both "normal" things of daily life (eating, entering home, etc) as less normal things (flying, etc) as reality checks.

I wonder if in a lucid dream we would be able to really visit/see the real Pure Land or even Amitabha. Perhaps we would just see our wishes and how we conceive Pure Land, and thus, the vision of the real Pure Land would be only "avaiable" for the long time practioner. I have no idea.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby cj39 » Mon Dec 10, 2012 3:01 am

I can't say I have had perfect success but this experiment has been far from a failure. I managed to (mostly) learn the kanji for the nembutsu, dabbled with a few other scripts but I write it a few times as the last thing to do before going to bed and again upon waking up. It has mixed in with my morning dreams and I find myself nembutsing in them. Morning before last I dreamed I was in the borderland which looked suspiciously like Florida :thinking:
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Kaji » Tue Dec 11, 2012 7:54 am

cj39 wrote:I can't say I have had perfect success but this experiment has been far from a failure. I managed to (mostly) learn the kanji for the nembutsu, dabbled with a few other scripts but I write it a few times as the last thing to do before going to bed and again upon waking up. It has mixed in with my morning dreams and I find myself nembutsing in them. Morning before last I dreamed I was in the borderland which looked suspiciously like Florida :thinking:

Good to hear that the practice is taking some effect. If you can gather the mental strength to chant it 10 times whenever you regain consciousness, be it in a lucid dream or upon waking up, you should have an excellent chance of rebirth into West Pure Land upon leaving death. Great stuff!
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Illuminaughty » Tue Dec 11, 2012 10:45 pm

I usually recite nembutsu whenever I have a lucid dream. For some reason the last time I did it a wave of fear passed over me though. I wonder if thats a bad sign? I flew through the wall of my house. It turned dark like it was going to storm and then I felt anxiety.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Kaji » Thu Dec 13, 2012 2:44 am

Illuminaughty wrote:I usually recite nembutsu whenever I have a lucid dream. For some reason the last time I did it a wave of fear passed over me though. I wonder if thats a bad sign? I flew through the wall of my house. It turned dark like it was going to storm and then I felt anxiety.

It could be a multitude of things, so not sure if it's good or bad. In any case, would it best to just keep on reciting nembutsu and let whatever feelings, forms or phenomena passes right by you?
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby Nosta » Thu Dec 13, 2012 9:04 pm

Illuminaughty wrote:I usually recite nembutsu whenever I have a lucid dream. For some reason the last time I did it a wave of fear passed over me though. I wonder if thats a bad sign? I flew through the wall of my house. It turned dark like it was going to storm and then I felt anxiety.



For some reason i can understand, sometimes the Nembutsu can bring bad dreams (like spirits attacking you) or even bad omens/visions. Maybe thats the bad karma being rippened. I dont know.
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Re: A Skillful Method to Ensure Rebirth into Western Pure Land

Postby CreativeMind » Fri Dec 14, 2012 9:31 am

Nosta wrote:
Illuminaughty wrote:I usually recite nembutsu whenever I have a lucid dream. For some reason the last time I did it a wave of fear passed over me though. I wonder if thats a bad sign? I flew through the wall of my house. It turned dark like it was going to storm and then I felt anxiety.



For some reason i can understand, sometimes the Nembutsu can bring bad dreams (like spirits attacking you) or even bad omens/visions. Maybe thats the bad karma being rippened. I dont know.


It happens to me on numerous occasions. Usually when I recite intensely during the day, I would have very uneasy sleep at night, with visions of being reprimanded, being in uncomfortable situations, having a sense of being lost, of being trapped, etc, etc..
When I did not recite for the day, due to a hectic work schedule, I could sleep better. I am quite sure the bad dreams would happen to me again in the near future when I recite.. But I have to push on and don't give up.. :anjali:
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