Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby Shutoku » Tue Sep 06, 2011 2:01 am

This might be a bit of a long shot, but I thought I'd try anyway.

I have been attending a Jodo Shinshu Temple in Canada for a dozen years now.
I may be moving to another town in the near future and the nearest Temple to where I would be living is a Vietnamese Pure Land Temple. They don't have a website, so it is tough to get much information short of calling them up or visiting, which ultimately is what I would have to do, but I wondered if anyone has any experience or knowledge they could share.

I just wondered if there is anyone on this board who is familiar with the differences, primarily in terms of Temple services, liturgy and ritual, more so than philosophical differences.
Namo Amida Butsu
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby LastLegend » Tue Sep 06, 2011 1:39 pm

Shutoku wrote:This might be a bit of a long shot, but I thought I'd try anyway.

I have been attending a Jodo Shinshu Temple in Canada for a dozen years now.
I may be moving to another town in the near future and the nearest Temple to where I would be living is a Vietnamese Pure Land Temple. They don't have a website, so it is tough to get much information short of calling them up or visiting, which ultimately is what I would have to do, but I wondered if anyone has any experience or knowledge they could share.

I just wondered if there is anyone on this board who is familiar with the differences, primarily in terms of Temple services, liturgy and ritual, more so than philosophical differences.


Pure Land Temple? Hehehe most Vietnamese monks nowadays practice Pure Land. I have not been to a Vietnamese Pure Land Temple. So I can't tell you what they do there. I think in a Vietnamese Temple, you chant and recite texts then eat lunch for free because people bring vegetarian food there, or cook there. Good Vietnamese food and Vietnamese people are nice and friendly.
NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)

Linjii
―Listen! Those of you who devote yourselves to the Dharma
must not be afraid of losing your bodies and your lives―
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby gerald_ford » Wed Oct 05, 2011 6:32 am

My experiences with Vietnamese Buddhism are limited, but in general East Asian Buddhism tends to approach the Pure Land the same way. The only exception is in Japan where sects exclusively devoted to the Pure Land and Amitabha emerged. However, a lot of other sects in Japan still practice the Pure Land path as part of a larger framework. That's who Vietnamese Pure Land Buddhism will look when you encounter it. If memory serves, priests in Vietnamese Buddhism are still ordained Bhikkhus, while the ones in Japanese Buddhism are more lay priests typically.

Fundamentally, they all focus on the same teachings, and all recite the name of Amitabha Buddha, so it won't be anything unfamiliar. In Vietnamese the recitation of Amitabha's name is Nam mô A di đà Phật, which in a Northern-pronunciation (what I studied) sounds like Nam mo a zee da fuht.

Hope that helps.
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby Shutoku » Sat Oct 08, 2011 2:06 am

Yes, I know that Japan is sort of unique in PL being a separate sect, and having non-celibate clergy.
Obviously in a Vietnamese Temple they won't be chanting Shonshinge, or any of the liturgy Rennyo established.

Are they however likely to chant the poetic portions of the Larger sutra such as Sanbutsuge or Juseige? (albeit of course not in Sino-Japanese) or is there more of an emphasis on the Amida Sutra.
I seem to have found some indications of a walking meditation while chanting the Nembutsu.
As I said, I wonder more about the liturgical and ritual differences than philosophy or language.

Anyway, I imagine that if I relocate I'll just phone or check it out. There are also two Jodo Shinshu Temples not unreasonably far away, and I think I am pretty deeply Shinshu, so most likely I would just go to one of them anyway. However it is always good to try new things.

Thanks for the responses.
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby kirtu » Sat Oct 08, 2011 2:32 am

Vietnamese Pure Land is like Chinese Pure Land. There won't be much of an emphasis on doctrine per se. Most of the chanting will be in Sanskrit (probably). Also there is no notion of Shinran's (or was it Honen's) Self-Power/Other-Power view.

However I've only been to one Vietnamese place so please let us know how it goes.

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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby Astus » Mon Oct 10, 2011 12:39 pm

kirtu wrote:Also there is no notion of Shinran's (or was it Honen's) Self-Power/Other-Power view.Kirt


Self- and other-power were conceived by Shandao, so it's present in other Pure Land schools.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby Andreas Ludwig » Mon Oct 10, 2011 5:08 pm

What he meant is - I suppose - that in these PL schools Shinrans unique view of absolute other power is not present.
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby Shutoku » Mon Oct 10, 2011 11:49 pm

Which is a big part of why I am Jodo Shinshu. So the more I think of it the more I am certain I'll just travel a bit further and stick with Shinshu.
I will say also the only book of Thich Nhat Hanh's that I really did not like at all was "finding our true home", because of his very much self-power approach to the Amida sutra.
I suspect in terms of Temples and sect, I have already "found my true home" :smile:
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby kirtu » Tue Oct 11, 2011 12:29 am

Astus wrote:
kirtu wrote:Also there is no notion of Shinran's (or was it Honen's) Self-Power/Other-Power view.Kirt


Self- and other-power were conceived by Shandao, so it's present in other Pure Land schools.


That's interesting, I didn't know that. As Andreas noted I was specifically referring to Shinran's view of absolute other power.

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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby Huifeng » Tue Oct 11, 2011 3:32 am

Probably pretty much the same as what you'll find in Chinese Pureland practice.
I know a lot of Vietnamese who happily go to Chinese temples and fit in really well.
For one, not really a Pureland "school" per se, as it is just one method in the whole big Dharma picture.
They'll probably be chanting the Chinese scriptures (not in Sanskrit at all!), with emphasis on the "Amitabha Sutra" 佛說阿彌陀經,
but in Vietnamese, not in Chinese.
As above, they probably will not have a huge emphasis on the "(absolute) other power" and "vows" of Amitabha,
but will say that one has to make effort themselves to be reborn there.

I'll see if I can ask a couple of the Vietnamese bhiksus and bhiksunis here at FGU for any more details.

~~ Huifeng
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby Dodatsu » Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:46 pm

Astus wrote:
kirtu wrote:Also there is no notion of Shinran's (or was it Honen's) Self-Power/Other-Power view.Kirt


Self- and other-power were conceived by Shandao, so it's present in other Pure Land schools.


Actually self and other power were conceived by Tanluan (Donran), and inherited by Daozuo (Doshaku) and Shandao (Zendo).
Contemplating the power of Tathagata's Primal Vow,
One sees that no foolish being who encounters it passes by in vain.
When a person single-heartedly practices the saying of the Name alone,
It brings quickly to fullness and perfection [in that person] the great treasure ocean of true and real virtues.
- Shinran Shonin
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby Astus » Wed Oct 12, 2011 4:14 pm

Dodatsu wrote:Actually self and other power were conceived by Tanluan (Donran), and inherited by Daozuo (Doshaku) and Shandao (Zendo).


Thanks. :anjali:
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby rory » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:54 pm

Rev. Dodatsu:
wonderful to see you here! It's like the old e-sangha for sure now :smile:
gassho
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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby sinweiy » Thu Oct 13, 2011 2:26 am

i say there's a rebirth
rory wrote:Rev. Dodatsu:
wonderful to see you here! It's like the old e-sangha for sure now :smile:
gassho
Rory


:) more like a new born. it sort of illustrate what rebirth is about.

Rebirth in Buddhism is the doctrine that the evolving consciousness (Pali: samvattanika-viññana)[1][2] or stream of consciousness (Pali: viññana-sotam,[3] Sanskrit: vijñāna-srotām, vijñāna-santāna, or citta-santāna) upon death (or "the dissolution of the aggregates" (P. khandhas, S. skandhas)), becomes one of the contributing causes for the arising of a new aggregation. The consciousness in the new person is neither identical nor entirely different from that in the deceased but the two form a causal continuum or stream.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rebirth_(Buddhist)


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Re: Vietnamese Pure Land compared to Jodo Shinshu?

Postby rory » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:31 pm

Hehe great illustration of rebirth Sinweiy :twothumbsup:
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