Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Mr. G » Sat Dec 31, 2011 8:37 pm

Some more from "Near-Death Folklore in Medieval China and Japan: A Comparative Analysis" by James McClenon:

Tao-ch'o, a Pure Land Buddhist monk who attracted
a large following, was also affected by an NDE episode:

    At the age of sixty-five, aged and sick, he felt himself to be on
    his deathbed, and summoned his disciples and many followers
    to recite the sutras. Thereupon T'an-luan appeared to him,
    and in a voice heard by all present, commanded that Tao-ch'o
    must continue to teach people for many years. It is said that
    flowers fell from heaven, which were carefully preserved by
    his followers. From that day on, Tao-ch'o became progressively
    healthier, even regaining another set of teeth, and continued
    to teach for almost two decades, living to the rare age
    of eighty-three.

Shan-tao invoked his monks to record deathbed visions of Pure
Land Buddhists, an activity which generated a body of written "evidence"
regarding the afterworld. The Ching-t'u-lun, a document
compiled shortly after Tao-ch'o's era, contains twenty NDE
accounts, half from monks and half from lay persons.

    In at least one case (that of Dharma-master Chu-Hung),
    not only the dying person but all present were said to have
    seen the body of the Buddha coming from the Pure Land to
    welcome the dying monk....In other cases, devout laywomen
    and laymen described visions of heavenly hosts on their deathbeds.
    In yet another, a butcher first had a vision of hell,
    whereupon he was terrified into chanting the name of Amida;
    he then had a vision of Amida offering him the lotus seat, and
    passed peacefully away.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Fascinating stuff huh? :twothumbsup:
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nighthawk » Sun Jan 01, 2012 5:17 am

Nosta wrote:Interesting that one Mr. G. About that: has someone here saw visions of Sukhavati?


Had a dream about 3 nights ago where I was drowning in an ocean, as I was sinking deeper and deeper I heard a voice say "I got you" and saw a bright white light then woke up. That night I think I had practiced the Nembutsu so it could of been a sign from Amida. Pretty cool I guess.
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nosta » Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:53 pm

Mr G, great stuff indeed your last post :)

Ryoto, thanks for sharing your vision with us. I would like to remember that, accordingly to Buddhism of Pure Wisdow and Faith, sometimes one may see demonic visions, not real ones. Visions from demons, devas, etc trying to make us get confused.
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Mr. G » Mon Jan 02, 2012 1:18 am

Nosta wrote:I would like to remember that, accordingly to Buddhism of Pure Wisdow and Faith, sometimes one may see demonic visions, not real ones. Visions from demons, devas, etc trying to make us get confused.


Hi Nosta,

This is one of my minor complaints with that book. I think a lot of the demonic visions, etc. are partially due to cultural folklore, and of course there is a possibility of false visions when practicing any type of meditation. However, I defer to Pure Land Patriarch Shan-tao. The Wang-sheng li-tsan (Hymns in Praise of Birth) says:

    If anyone recites [the name] of the Buddha in hope of birth, he or she will always be protected by all of the Buddhas of the six directions as numerous as the sands of the Ganges.

In Chapter 15 of the Senchakushu, Honen declares that they [nembutsu practitioners] are additionally protected by Amida Buddha, by his attendant bodhisattvas Avalokiteshvara and Mahasthamaprapta, by the twenty-five bodhisattvas who appear in the Shih wang-sheng ching, by all the beings of the heavens, by the four kings, by the dragon deities and by all the other tutelary deities of Buddhism.

And Shinran writes:

    When we realize the diamondlike true mind, we transcend crosswise the paths of the five courses and eight hindered existences and unfailingly gain ten benefits in the present life. What are these ten?

    1. The benefit of being protected and sustained by unseen powers.
    2. The benefit of being possessed of supreme virtues.
    3. The benefit of our karmic evil being transformed into good.
    4. The benefit of being protected and cared for by all the Buddhas.
    5. The benefit of being praised by all the Buddhas.
    6. The benefit of being constantly protected by the light of the Buddha's heart.
    7. The benefit of having great joy in our hearts.
    8. The benefit of being aware of Amida's benevolence and of responding in gratitude to his virtue.
    9. The benefit of constantly practicing great compassion.
    10. The benefit of entering the stage of the truly settled.

Personally, I think the practice of nian-fo/nembutsu itself along with bodhicitta provide ample protection from going astray. :smile:
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nosta » Mon Jan 02, 2012 1:37 am

I think the same too: recitation can only bring benefits, not only the best of all (rebirth on PureLand & Nirvana) but also the ones you spoke.
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nighthawk » Tue Jan 03, 2012 7:55 pm

It should be noted that even though we receive protection by chanting the Nembutsu, we are still subject to our karma from the past. Although the Nembutsu does have the power to purify it to a certain degree.
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Mr. G » Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:19 pm

Ryoto wrote:It should be noted that even though we receive protection by chanting the Nembutsu, we are still subject to our karma from the past.


Agreed.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
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Re: Pure Land Resources

Postby sinweiy » Wed Mar 07, 2012 1:51 am

Do We Go To Pure Land Only After Death?

Question: Do we go to Pure Land only after death? How do we know it is possible if we can't go now?

Answer: There are two ways to reach the actual Pure Land of Amituofo (in contrast to having only occasional 'glimpses' of the Pure Land of our self-nature) - before death, and after death. For Pure Land practitioners, many depart for Pure Land when 'in between' the above - on the brink of death, when old, sick and/or dying. This is the case for most due to 'natural' attachment to samsaric life, thus unwilling to leave when one can still stay. However, when their bodies are clearly beyond repair due to old age and disease, they will realise that it is indeed time to let go. This is when their Three Provisions of Faith (in Amituofo and reaching his Pure Land), Aspiration (to go Pure Land) and Practice (of mindfulness of Amituofo) become focused and magnified in strength adequately, thus enabling them to reach Pure Land. An intense sense of final existential desperation can thus be transformed into great hope when one takes refuge in Amituofo fully on the deathbed.

This implies that when we practise mindfulness of Amituofo in everyday life, as long as we have not reached Pure Land, our Three Provisions are yet to be charged up sufficiently. This does not necessarily mean there is no Faith, Aspiration or Practice at all, but simply that they are not yet synergised all the way, powered by the crucial additional Faithful Aspiration that drives diligent enough Practice for reaching Pure Land. As the Amitabha Sutra states, 'If there are those who have already aspired, now aspire, or in the future aspire, to be born in Amita[bha] Buddha's land... they have already been born, are now being born, or will be born in that land.' Note that true Aspiration is based on true Faith, and expressed by true Practice. When the Three Provisions are sufficient, connection to Amituofo and being guided to his Pure Land is inevitable.

The difference between everyday practice of mindfulness of Amituofo versus the practice done just before departing for Pure Land (which can be when medically dying, or any time way prior to natural death), is that the latter is much more determined - with a 'do or die' attitude, with no other alternative in mind. This is the truest meaning of being single-minded (and wholehearted), of being without a confused or scattered mind, that entertains doubts and other desires. This also means we can reach Pure Land any time, as long as we are similarly determined, willing to let go of this samsaric life right here and right now. For those are are less willing when alive, they can still reach Pure Land after death, before being reborn, when there is extended support-chanting, that guides and encourages their consciousnesses to give rise to the Three Provisions adequately in time.

Those who practise very well can depart for Pure Land before being old, sick and/or dying; when healthy, young and thus very much alive instead. In history and even today, there are countless recorded cases of people who have done so. They manifest the classic auspicious signs of birth in Pure Land while departing very blissfully. Such passing must karmically lead to the most blissful realm they aspire to reach - Pure Land. Some give way ahead yet accurate announcements of their departure dates and times too. This is very powerful evidence for the efficacy of Pure Land practice because for ordinary beings, with the Three Poisons of strong Attachment (to samsaric life), Aversion (to dying) and Delusion (of the afterlife), it is impossible to calmly and clearly know and say when one will depart, if not, as testified by them, having been informed by Amituofo of when he will arrive to guide them to his Pure Land. These advance notices are also Amituofo's skilful means to inspire us to have greater Faith in him!

Namo Amituofo : Shen Shi'an
_/\_
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: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nighthawk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 5:52 am

Those who reach the “world where lotus blossoms
Are stored” (the Pure Land)
Are immediately enlightened to “thusness.”
Exercising their “transcendent powers”
In the “forest of base desires”
They transform themselves into forms
Meaningful to those they wish to “save”
In the “garden of life and death” (the sentient world).

- Shinran
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nosta » Fri Mar 09, 2012 12:31 am

beautiful posts the last ones.

:twothumbsup:
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nighthawk » Thu Mar 15, 2012 11:22 am

Tathagata is Nirvana;
And Nirvana is referred to
as the nature of Buddha.
An ordinary person
cannot be enlightened (in this world),
But can realize it
In the Land of Serene Sustenance.


- Shinran
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Mr. G » Fri Mar 30, 2012 6:49 pm

    What is the right way of thinking in Shinshu?
    I don't know it well, but just throw yourself in front of Amida
    Buddha and ask him to do whatever he wants to you.
    This is my faith.
    After that, never have evil thoughts, never do evil things.
    Then you need not recite the Nembutsu in a feigned voice.
    This is the Anjin (Peaceful Mind) of Shinshu.
    Whatever may happen to me, I trust in Amida Buddha


    - Kobayashi Issa
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nighthawk » Wed Apr 25, 2012 11:48 pm

In the school founded by the Master, faith is placed before all else. If we ask the purpose of that faith, [the answer is that] it is the point of departure enabling wretched ordinary beings like ourselves, who lack good and do evil, to go readily to Amida�s Pure Land. Without attaining faith, we will not be born in the Land of Utmost Bliss but will fall into the hell of incessant pain (avici).
If we then ask how to attain that faith, [the answer is that], relying deeply on the single buddha, Amida Tathagata, we give no thought to any of the various good deeds and myriad practices, and, dismissing the inclination to make petitions to the various buddhas and bodhisattvas just for this life, and discarding false, erroneous thoughts such as those of self-power, we entrust ourselves singleheartedly and steadfastly, without double-mindedness, to Amida; without fail, Amida embraces such people with his all-pervading light and will not abandon them. Once we have attained faith (shin) in this way, we should bear in mind that the nenbutsu we say at all times, sleeping or waking, expresses our gratitude for the benevolence of Amida who saves us.
Those who understand as explained above are indeed exemplary of what it is to have attained faith fully according to our tradition. If there are people who say that there is something else over and above this called �faith,� they are greatly mistaken. We can never accept [such a claim]. (2:2) - Master Rennyo
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Mr. G » Sat Apr 28, 2012 12:20 am

Please note, this thread is for Pure Land quotes. Discussions/debate are to be started in separate threads.

Off topic posts moved:

viewtopic.php?f=60&t=8062
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nighthawk » Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:24 am

In this world, nothing is fixed before it happens. The future can always be changed. For example, before we recited "Namo Amitabha Buddha," we didn't have the qualifications to be reborn in the Land of Ultimate Bliss. Once we recite, we become qualified. Even if originally it would have been difficult for you to be reborn in the West, once you recite it becomes possible. On the other hand, even if you could be reborn in the West with a single recitation, if you don't recite once, you won't get there. So nothing is fixed. The Vajra Sutra says, "There are no fixed dharmas. This is called Anuttarasamyaksambodhi." That is the method for attaining unsurpassed, proper and equal, right enlightenment. We should advance courageously, undaunted by suffering, difficulty, cold, and hunger, until we arrive at the Land of Ultimate Bliss. Reciting "Namo Amitabha Buddha" is what really counts. In reciting, the most important thing is to end birth and death. - Venerable Hsuan Hua
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nosta » Tue Jun 19, 2012 2:09 pm

I found the next sentence in the following website. Its nothing new, as most of the ideas here are not new for Pure Landers, but its vert important to motivate each others here. Its important to remember things all the time. Its important to make each one of us feel new and fresh by reading these quotes that Masters wrote.

The site is this:
http://online.sfsu.edu/~rone/Buddhism/B ... lness.html

The sentence:
The Blowing Wind and the Calm Waters Proclaim the Mahayana.

The pure heart is like the moon in water. The mind in samadhi is like a cloudless sky.If you can recite so completely that you enter the Buddha-recitation samadhi, then hearing the wind, it's "Namo Amitabha Buddha," and hearing the rain, it's "Namo Amitabha Buddha." Every sound you hear recites the Buddha's name. The water flows, the wind blows, proclaiming the Mahayana...The Chinese poet Su Dongpo said: Of the colors of the mountain, none is not the vast, long tongue. Of the sounds of the streams, all are the clear, pure sound. All the mountain's colors are the Buddha's long tongue proclaiming the wonderful Dharma. This is the attainment of the Buddha-recitation samadhi. So I wrote this verse:

If you recite the Buddha's name,reciting without cease,
The mouth recites "Amita"and makes things of a piece.
Scattered thoughts do not arise, samadhi you attain.
For rebirth in the Pure Land, your hope is not in vain.
If all day you detest the suffering Saha's pain,
Make rebirth in Ultimate Bliss your mind's essential aim.
Cut off the red dust thoughts within your mind.
Put down impure reflections, and pure thoughts you will find.

Recite the Buddha's name from morning to night and your confused thoughts will not arise. You will naturally attain the Buddha-recitation samadhi and be reborn in the Land of Ultimate Bliss, according to your will. You know that the Saha world is full of pain and suffering; so cut off worldly pleasures and have no thoughts of sexual desire, craving, or struggling for fame and profit. Put down all worldly concerns and view them as false. Seek rebirth, ultimate bliss; this thought of rebirth is extremely important.This verse clearly explains the principles of reciting the Buddha's name, and if you carefully savor its flavor, you'll find it very helpful.
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby GarcherLancelot » Fri Jun 22, 2012 11:04 pm

Nighthawk wrote:“If I were capable of realizing Buddhahood by other religious practices and yet fall into hell for saying the nembutsu, I might have dire regrets for having been deceived. But since I am absolutely incapable of any religious practice, hell is my only home.”
- Shinran

How did he mean by hell for saying nembutsu?
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nighthawk » Sat Jun 23, 2012 3:57 am

GarcherLancelot wrote:
Nighthawk wrote:“If I were capable of realizing Buddhahood by other religious practices and yet fall into hell for saying the nembutsu, I might have dire regrets for having been deceived. But since I am absolutely incapable of any religious practice, hell is my only home.”
- Shinran

How did he mean by hell for saying nembutsu?

Hell as in a literal destination after death.
Other teachers such as Nichiren back in the day in Japan were spreading the propaganda to people that by saying the Nembutsu one will end up in hell in a cheap way to gain converts. The Jodo schools were prime targets for this type of malicious propaganda as they were the most popular Buddhist sects in Japan and still are to this day.
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby GarcherLancelot » Sat Jun 23, 2012 7:13 am

Nighthawk wrote:
GarcherLancelot wrote:
Nighthawk wrote:“If I were capable of realizing Buddhahood by other religious practices and yet fall into hell for saying the nembutsu, I might have dire regrets for having been deceived. But since I am absolutely incapable of any religious practice, hell is my only home.”
- Shinran

How did he mean by hell for saying nembutsu?

Hell as in a literal destination after death.
Other teachers such as Nichiren back in the day in Japan were spreading the propaganda to people that by saying the Nembutsu one will end up in hell in a cheap way to gain converts. The Jodo schools were prime targets for this type of malicious propaganda as they were the most popular Buddhist sects in Japan and still are to this day.

Wait I am pretty sure that the most popular Buddhist sects in Japan is Zen no?Those that wear black robes.
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Re: Favorite Pure Land Quotes

Postby Nighthawk » Sat Jun 23, 2012 7:53 am

Nope, not even close.
1 Jodoshinshu Hongwanjiha (Nishi Hongwanji) 6.94 million
2 Jodoshu 6.02 million
3 Shinshu Otaniha (Higashi Hongwanji) 5.53 million
4 Shingon shu (Koyasan) 4.28 million
5 Nichiren shu 3.85 million
6 Soto shu 1.55 million
7 Tendai shu 1.53 million

This is off-topic though.
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