Japanese Nembutsu- pronunciation

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truthb
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Japanese Nembutsu- pronunciation

Post by truthb »

Namu Amida But....?

:)

I have heard:
Namu Amida Buts
Name Amida Butsu
Namu Amida Bu.


Curious to know about these differences.
Paul Robert's life changing book on Amida Buddha- "Shin Buddhism 101"
https://drive.google.com/file/d/10i4DCA ... sp=sharing

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Tatsuo
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Re: Japanese Nembutsu- pronunciation

Post by Tatsuo »

This is how I understand it:
Namu Amida Buts
The Japanese syllable 'tsu' can be pronounced with an almost silent 'u'.
Name Amida Butsu
The non-shortened pronunciation of the nenbutsu.
Namu Amida Bu
The short form of the nenbutsu.

南無阿弥陀佛
truthb
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Re: Japanese Nembutsu- pronunciation

Post by truthb »

Tatsuo wrote: Tue Apr 21, 2020 3:10 am This is how I understand it:
Namu Amida Buts
The Japanese syllable 'tsu' can be pronounced with an almost silent 'u'.
Name Amida Butsu
The non-shortened pronunciation of the nenbutsu.
Namu Amida Bu
The short form of the nenbutsu.
Thank you!.

Is there any mention of one being more or less "effective" or powerful?
Paul Robert's life changing book on Amida Buddha- "Shin Buddhism 101"
https://drive.google.com/file/d/10i4DCA ... sp=sharing

Please visit my Jodo ShinShu Buddhism youtube channel- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCB2JSy ... oFyP917KMA and offer feedback.
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Tatsuo
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Re: Japanese Nembutsu- pronunciation

Post by Tatsuo »

No, all different versions are equal. In Shin Buddhism it's also ok to say "namanda" or "namandabu". Both come from the very fast recitation of "NA--muA--miDA--bu".

Edit:
This is what I mean:

南無阿弥陀佛
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Re: Japanese Nembutsu- pronunciation

Post by KiwiNFLFan »

The character 佛 in Old Chinese was pronounced kind of like 'boot'. The full Chinese word for 'Buddha' is 佛陀 and was pronounced 'Bioot-da' in Middle Chinese. It seems that there is a pattern in Japanese where characters (kanji) that end in -t in old Chinese have a -tsu ending (for example, the character 日 can be pronounced 'jitsu' in Japanese, and the Old Chinese pronounciation is 'nyit', cf modern Hokkien 'jit'). This is because Japanese syllables can only end in a vowel or -n, so a second syllable (tsu) is added to preserve the Old Chinese -t ending. Interestingly enough, the Middle Chinese -t ending morphed to an -l in Korean (so 佛 is pronounced 'bul' and 日 is pronounced 'il').

In Mandarin, however, the nembutsu (nianfo) is 南無阿彌陀佛 (Na Mo A Mi Tuo Fo), a neat six syllables. The Korean (나무아미타불 Na Mu A Mi Ta Bul) and Vietnamese (Nam mô A Di Đà Phật*) pronunciations of the characters are also six syllables, so maybe "Namu Amida Bu" was chosen to bring the nembutsu back to six syllables (maybe to aid in chanting).


* The Vietnamese pronounciation of the niệm Phật (nembutsu) is as follows:
Southern pronunciation: nam mo ah yee da faht
Northern pronunciation: nam mo ah zee da faht

'Faht' is pronounced like 'baht', the Thai currency, but with an 'f' initial sound.
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Zhen Li
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Re: Japanese Nembutsu- pronunciation

Post by Zhen Li »

The つ or ツ kana which is represented in romaji by tsu, when used in on-yomi (i.e. words borrowed from middle Chinese) was used to transliterate the final -t in middle Chinese, and thus was pronounced as a dental or glottal stop. ち, chi, is also used for -t but I'm not aware whether it was pronounced as stop or not. In modern Japanese this is no longer the case.

For this reason, in Jōdo Shinshū liturgy the tsu is pronounced with a glottal stop, with the exception of Shōshinge since it is the most widely known and thus pronounced in the modern way. The glottal stop seems to have a bit of air included in it sometimes, but sometimes it is just a stop. Here you can here it with "gatsu" (which sounds like ga with a soft ng) and in the Eko with "hotsu" (which sounds more like ho'ing).


The 佛 generally is left open though as bu-. I don't think that video has any with つ. I don't have time to look for examples but you will easily find cases where people say butsu or bu'ing. I think a glottal stop is probably most historically accurate and hether it is open or with a stop, the -tsu is modern, the nembutsu is definitely six syllables, but that's not really what matters except for in cases of liturgy. Most Pure Land sects would agree, I think, that pronunciation is not a crucial component; In Jōdo Shinshū shinjin is what matters.
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明安 Myoan
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Re: Japanese Nembutsu- pronunciation

Post by 明安 Myoan »

In Jodo Shu, you may encounter the long and short forms.

"Namu Amida Butsu" is favored when by itself, such as saying it one time or referring to nembutsu.
You may see this in the translated writings of Honen and Ippen, or at the end of an email.

"Namu Amida Bu" is what I was taught to recite when repeating nembutsu many times, such as throughout the day.
And of course in Shin, there's "Namandabu" :)

As has been written above, there is no difference in terms of efficacy of the practice, or in connecting with Amida Buddha.
Master Shantao wrote:When sentient beings worship Buddha Amitabha, He sees them.
When they recite the name of Buddha Amitabha, He listens to them.
When they are mindful of Buddha Amitabha, He is also mindful of them.
Accordingly, the three categories (physical, verbal, and mental) of
acts exercised by both Buddha Amitabha and the Nembutsu devotee unite
into one. Since this karmic relationship between Buddha Amitabha and
the Nembutsu devotee is like that between parents and their children,
it is called the 'intimate karmic relationship'.
With a heart wandering in ignorance down this path and that, to guide me I simply say Namu-Amida-Butsu. -- Ippen

Reciting the Nembutsu and believing in birth in the Pure Land naturally give rise to the Three Minds and the Four Modes of Practice. -- Master Hōnen
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