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Old 09-29-2005, 07:30 AM
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Default The Library - Taifuunome Lore/Background.

This is just to touch on some of the background of the Taifuunome Family.

One the main principals of our lore center around the Buddhist texts of the Pure Land Sutra. Sutras are the scriptures for Buddhism. In the Pure Land Sutra is it explained that once one reaches a certain level of enlightenment it is possible for their surroundings to longer matter. Tranquility, peace and happiness come from within and are non-dependent on the circumstances of the world around us. Truly, we cannot always control every aspect of the environment or the world we live, but we can control our reactions to it and how our mind forms it. Knowing this, the Pure Land is born.

The Buddha Amitabha has created with his store of merit a "Pure Land" (a paradise) which is in the "Western" part of the Buddha-fields. Anyone who calls on Amitabha (=Amida) using the formula of the Nembutsu can enter this land upon death. Thus escape from samsara and suffering is available to the laity without extensive years of monkish discipline and meditation. The Buddha Amitabha is very similiar to the Western idea of Christ. Upon calling upon his name upon death you enter what is called the "Pure Land". Some theorize that the Pure Land is only visited after death, while others believe it is possible to attain to this while alive. Much like the debate over nirvana.

Another important aspect of Pure Land Buddhism is the concept of Bodhisattvas and Buddhas. Bodhisattvas are beings that have postponed their enlightenment in order to help others. Seeing as the whole purpose of Buddhism is to attain enlightenment, this is perhaps the most noble and ideal manifestations of Buddhist teachings.

Here are a few pictures of Bodhisattvas:





Depsite the constant warfare, strife, suffering, corruption and death around us we look within ourselves, and ask Bodhisattvas with help to find truth, harmony and peace.
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Old 10-12-2005, 05:51 PM
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Post The 48 Vows

On Amitabha's journey to the Pure Land and to become a Buddha, he made 48 vows, the result of which would allow any who might call his name to be born into a life of unbounded joy:

Vow 1 : Provided I become a Buddha, if in that Buddha-country of mine there should be either hell, or the animal state of existence, or the realm of hungry ghost, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 2 : Provided I become a Buddha, if in that country of mine the beings who are born there should fall away (die) into the three evil realms, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 3 : Provided I become a Buddha, if in that country of mine the beings who are born there should not all be of the colour of genuine gold, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 4 : Provided I become a Buddha, if in that Buddha-country of mine the beings who are born there should not all be of one appearance without the difference of noble looking or ugly lineaments, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 5 : Provided I become a Buddha, if in that Buddha-country of mine the beings who are born there should not be possessed of the supernormal knowledge of recollecting the previous lives of themselves (Purvanivasana i.e. knowledge of all reincarnations), and knowing the events of evolution of hundred thousand nayuta years of kalpas, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 6 : Provided I become a Buddha, if in that country of mine the beings who are born there should not be possessed of the Divine-eye (Divyatchakchus) which can see a hundred thousand nayuta of Buddha-countries, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 7 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the beings of that country of mine should not be possessed of the Divine-ear (Divyassrotra) which to be able to hear the preachings of a hundred thousand kotis of nayuta of Buddhas, and to a faithful observance, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 8 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the beings of that country of mine should not all possessed the Intuitive-mind (Paratchittadjna) knowing the thoughts of all beings of a hundred thousand kotis of nayuta of Buddha-countries, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 9 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the beings of that country of mine should not all possessed of the Heavenly-step (Riddisakchatkriya) which can in the shortest moment of one thought travelling over a hundred thousand kotis of nayuta of Buddha-countries, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 10 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the beings of that country of mine should have arise in their minds the idea of selfishness and covetous thoughts, even with regard to their own bodies, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 11 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the beings of that country of mine should not all be firmly abiding in a concentrated state of meditation and equanimity (Samadhi) till they have reached Nirvana, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 12 : Provided I become a Buddha, if my light should be limited in measurement so that it could not illuminate a hundred thousand nayuta of kotis of Buddha-countries, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 13 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the measure of my life should be limited, even by counting a hundred thousand nayuta of kotis of Kalpas, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 14 : Provided I become a Buddha, if any being should be able to count innumerable pupils belonging to me in that country of mine, even if all the beings of those three million worlds and the whole triple chiliocosm, who after having become Pratyeka-Buddhas, count and continue to do so for a period of a hundred thousand nayuta of kotis of Kalpas, could know the balance, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 15 : Provided I become a Buddha, the life of the beings in that country of mine should be eternal, excepting by their own free will whenever they choose to pass away from life, otherwise may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 16 : Provided I become a Buddha, there should be no evil or sinful existence in that country of mine, even its very name is unknown. Otherwise may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 17 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the innumerable Buddhas of the worlds of ten quarters do not glorify my name, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 18 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the beings of the ten quarters who after having heard my name, and thus awakened their highest faith and aspiration of re-birth in that country of mine, even they have recollected such a thought for ten times only, they are destinated to be born there, with the exception of those who have committed the five deadly sins (Anantarya), and who have blasphemed the orthodox Law (Dharma), otherwise may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 19 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the beings of ten quarters who have directed their thoughts towards the Bodhi and cultivated their stock of various merits with a fervent craving for re-birth in that country of mine, if at the moment of death, should I not appear with an assembly of retinue before them, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 20 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the beings of ten quarters, after having heard my name always longing for that country of mine and cultivating various essential merits for the purpose of realizing their earnest wish to be born in my country, should their fulfillment be failed, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 21 : Provided I become a Buddha, if the beings of that country of mine should not all be endowed with the glorious body perfected with the thirty-two attributes (Laksanani) of a great being, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 22 : Provided I become a Buddha, the Bodhisattvas who come to be born in that country of mine are to be bound to that one birth only, then to become Buddha-elect (Ekajatipratibuddhas), with the exception of those who by their own free will remain in the stage of Bodhisattva-hood for the sake of delivering various beings, wearing the armour of vows to travel to all worlds, performing their Boddhisattva-duties and accumulating their stock of merit, who wish to serve the Buddhas of ten quarters, and convert the various beings in number like grains of sand of the River Ganges to the highest perfect knowledge, whose activities have surpassed the stage of ordinary beings, and who practise the universal virtue of Samantabhadra, otherwise may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 23 : Provided I become a Buddha, if those Bodhisattvas in that country of mine, through the Grace of the Buddha should not be able to serve all the Buddhas throughout the countless nayuta of Buddha-worlds within a moment as short as a length of time of refreshment, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 24 : Provided I become a Buddha, if those Bodhisattva in that country of mine who wish their stock of merit to produce any appliance to be used before the Buddhas, should such things not appear for them to their satisfaction, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 25 : Provided I become a Buddha, if those Bodhisattvas in that country of mine should not be able to preach the law of wisdom in completion, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 26 : Provided I become a Buddha, those Bodhisattva of that country of mine should not all be in possession of a golden body as strong as the diamond of Narayana, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 27 : Provided I become a Buddha, the heavenly beings and the various properties produced in that country of mine should all be of supreme beauty and in boundless quantity, and in the infinity of various forms. If any being therein who even possessed the divine-eye is able to perceive the appellations and quantity of such beauties, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 28 : Provided I become a Buddha, if any Bodhisattva of that country of mine who possesses even the least stock of merit, should not perceive the boundless shining beauty of the Bodhi-trees of my sanctuary, their height being at least four millions of miles, then may I not attain enlightenment.

Vow 29 : Provided I become a Buddha, if any Bodhisattva of that country of mine should not all possess the wisdom of eloquent oration after having read, recited, and observed the Dharma of the sutras, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 30 : Provided I become a Buddha, if any Bodhisattvas of that country of mine, have their wisdom of oration limited, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 31 : When I have obtained the Buddhahood, if that country of mine should not be limpid and brilliant as to reflect the miniatures of the innumerable, inconceivable and boundless Buddha-worlds of ten quarters as one's face is seen in a bright mirror, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 32 : If after I have obtained the Buddhahood, in that country of mine, there should be magnificent palaces towering up from the ground to the void, also the lakes, winding streams, blossoming trees, and all other properties which are compounded of various jewels and thousands of kinds of perfumes, minutely embellished in the most wondrous state surpassing all heavenly and human worlds. The scent of the perfumes should thoroughly pervade the worlds of ten quarters, whereof the Bodhisattvas, having smelt them thereby directed their minds to Bodhi; otherwise may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 33 : When I obtain the Buddhahood, any being of the boundless and inconceivable Buddha-worlds of the ten quarters whose body if be touched by the rays of my splendour should not make his body and mind gentle and peaceful, in such a state that he is far more sublime than the gods and men, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 34 : When I obtain the Buddhahood, if the beings of boundless and inconceivable Buddha-worlds should not attain the "Endurance of Nirvanic Life" (Ajatah sarvadharmah) of Bodhisattva, and the deep knowledge of "Adharanamudro" (or Dharani?) after having heard my name, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 35 : When I obtain the Buddhahood, women of boundless and inconceivable Buddha-worlds of the ten quarters after having heard my name thereby awakened in faith and joyful aspiration, and turning their minds towards Bodhi, therefore dislike their own female lives, when they be born again, in their next life should not be incarnated into a masculine body, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 36 : When I obtain the Buddhahood, the Bodhisattvas of boundless and inconceivable Buddha-worlds of the ten quarters after having heard my name, after their death (in their next life) will still continue their Bodhisattva-duty till they have obtained the Buddhahood, otherwise may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 37 : When I obtain the Buddhahood, the heavenly beings of boundless and inconceivable Buddha-worlds of the ten quarters, having heard my name, should not worship me with prostrate reverence, and joyfully and faithfully perform their Bodhisattva-duty, and be honoured by gods and men, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 38 : When I obtain the Buddhahood, the heavenly beings of that country of mine, should they desire a garment will be able to perceive themselves, as quick as thought, covered by apparitionally produced costumes, excellent to their satisfaction, worthy to be praised by the Buddha, without the work of sewing, washing, dying, etc. Otherwise may I not attain enlightenment.

Vow 39 : When I attain the Buddhahood, if the heavenly beings of that country of mine should not be enjoying happiness as great as that that of the holy bhikkhus,(Asravakchava the finality of the stream of passions) then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 40 : When I attain the Buddhahood, if the Bodhisattvas of that country of mine wish to see the boundless, holy, pure Buddha-worlds of the ten quarters, they will at once behold them from the jewel-trees as though one's face were being reflected in a highly burnished, brilliant mirror, otherwise may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 41 : When I attain the Buddhahood, if the Bodhisattvas of other worlds after having heard my name, should suffer from any diminution in the functional powers and not be endowed with all sense-organs in completion before reaching the Buddhahood, then may I not attain the enlightenment.

Vow 42 : When I obtain the Buddhahood, if the Bodhisattvas hearing my name from other Buddha-countries, should not all attain the pure Samadhi of emancipation (Suvibhaktavati) from which they could serve innumerable and inconceivable number of Buddhas, Tathagatas, by a moment of thought; and if that Samadhi of theirs should come to an end meanwhile, then may I not attain enlightenment.

Vow 43 : If after I have obtained the Buddhahood, that any Bodhisattva of other countries having heard my name, will be incarnated as a member of a noble family (if he so desires) when he dies, otherwise may I not attain enlightenment.

Vow 44 : When I obtain the Buddhahood, the Bodhisattvas of other countries having heard my name will all obtain a combination of full virtues and joyfully perform their Bodhisattva-duty, otherwise may I not attain enlightenment.

Vow 45 : When I have obtain the Buddhahood, the Bodhisattvas of other countries having heard my name, all will attain the "Samantanugata" (the thoroughly and equal Samadhi in a fixed state of meditation) through that Samadhi they will see innumerable and inconceivable Buddhas constantly till they have obtained the Buddhahood, otherwise may I for-bear from obtaining enlightenment.

Vow 46 : When I obtain the Buddhahood, the Bodhisattvas of that country of mine should be able to hear the preachings of the Dharma whenever they desire (the voices of teaching will present themselves naturally to their ears), otherwise may I refrain from attaining enlightenment.

Vow 47 : When I have obtain the Buddhahood, if the Bodhisattvas of other countries after having heard my name should not immediately reach the state of Avaivartika (i.e. not turning back from Bodhi), then I would refrain from attaining enlightenment.

Vow 48 : When I have obtained the Buddhahood, if the Bodhisattvas of other countries having heard my name should not reach the first, second and third degrees of Dharma-endurance immediately or should turn back from the Law of Buddhas, then I would refrain from attaining enlightenment.

(Vows provided by Wikipedia)
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Last edited by MattyQ; 10-12-2005 at 05:52 PM. Reason: Tried to cut it into 5 seperate posts, but it attached them. =P
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Old 10-15-2005, 10:18 AM
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Default The life of Bhodhidharma.

This is more or less just to give some of the lesser known facts of Bhodhidharma's life and reflect on the importance of him to our
Family.

"It is said that the prince of a little Hindu village called Sardilli (also knowned as Bodhidarma), traveled to China on the year 526. Back then the Monk exchange to preach the Buddhist philosophy that came from India was very common.

Upon his arrival at China his name become Bodhidarma a Dharmo and after that adapted to the region phonetics transforming into Dharmo a TA Mo.
TA MO is considered the first patriarch of the Chan Buddhism (A new type of Buddhism brought by TA MO, that later on was knowned as Zen Buddhism in Japan).

It is said that TA MO was rejected at various temples because of his new perspectives of Buddhism. This ideas where disturbing for people and they continued practicing Buddhism as they were.
His search would end when he arrives at the Shaolin Temple (wich was created on the year 495 a. C., where they only did religious practices and translations of old texts).

But the search would not end within him. TA MO would be rejected again there, and after that he retired to meditate near the Temple for 9 years.
The Legend says that he meditated all the time, even in the presence of a furious Tigers, and when he began to fall asleep he took off his eyelids.
It was such the tremendous effort that he made, that the monks within the Temple opened their doors to him and accepted him as their new guide."
http://www.centrokaimen.com.ar/Tai_c..._yijinjing.htm

---

"On a summer day in A.D. 525, a Buddhist monk from India named Ta Mo (Bhodhidharma) arrived at the base of Mount Shaoshi in what would later become the Henan province of central China. He took in the scenery, thought or said something to the effect of "This is the place," and promptly founded the Shaolin monastery - the headquarters of a Buddhist sect that became known across Asia for its disciplined spiritualism and deadly martial-arts prowess. One guesses that Ta Mo had no idea that nearly 1,500 years later, the monks of Shaolin would still be held in great reverence while demonstrating their remarkable skill and stunning movement to audiences throughout modern-day China and around the world.

Recognizing the need to protect themselves in battle-torn feudal China, the early Shaolin monks embarked on a long process to develop a system of defense by mediating on the attack and defense movements of animals that lived near their monastery. The Shaolin monks called their system of fighting wushu, and after a few centuries of practice, their order was famous far and wide for being a brand of Buddhists that one would be unwise to provoke. However, even with all of their remarkable fighting abilities, the Shaolin monk's skills are never put to aggressive use. The only exception to this belief was of a group of wayward monks who left the monastery around the year A.D. 1620 to form a secret mercenary organization known as White Lotus that specialized in quiet, sure assassinations."
http://www.khansmartialartsacademy.c...lbum/index.htm

---

"Bodhidarma (Ta Mo in Chinese, Daruma in Japanese) was a Buddhist monk from India who likely belonged to the ruling warrior class. The details of the story vary dramatically depending on which legend one chooses to examine but the underlying theme remains. Bodhidarma is credited with starting the practice of the martial arts at the Shaolin temple in addition to founding the form of Buddhism known as Chan.

Chan Buddhism, which is called Zen in Japan, teaches the concept of gradual practice and sudden enlightenment. Previous schools taught that the disciple of Buddhism practices meditation over a long period of time and achieves enlightenment in stages. Chan contends that while the practice takes place over a long period of time the moment of enlightenment occurs suddenly and spontaneously."
http://www.ussd.com/lineagebegin.asp

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Soooo, from the above passages, we can surmise that Bhodhidharma was born around 500 AD. From an afluent warrior/ruling family, he decides to turn the focus of his life to the teachings of Buddha. It is then he sent to spread the teachings of Buddha from India, to China.

If nothing else, Bhodhidharma is credited with being the first Patriarch of Zen (Chan) Buddhism. He is also credited with if not founding, at least advancing and refining Kung Fu, which originated as a series of muscle exercises for monks that would meditate for several hours at a time.
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Old 10-19-2005, 03:01 PM
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Default Shoshinge

Shoshinge was a eulogy by Shinran Shonin (1173-1262) on the Buddha Amida (Amitabha). Shinran Shonin was the seed of Jodo Shinshu Buddhism, expounding "True Pure Land Way."

SHOSHINGE
by Shinran Shonin

English rendition by Richard St. Clair

I take refuge in the Buddha of Infinite Life,
The Tathagata of inconceivable Light.
Bodhisattva Dharmakara sat
with Buddha Lokeshvararaja.

Many Buddha-lands he saw and how they came to be,
humans and devas good and evil therein;
He made an unsurpassable vow
and stirred the rare, great Universal Vow.

Five kalpas did he contemplate this,
vowed that in the ten directions his name would be heard,
everywhere emitting boundless light,
regal, unimpedable, majestic light,

Pure Light, Joyful Light, Light all-wise,
ceaseless, inconceivable ineffable Light,
brighter than the sun or moon, it brightens all worlds,
all the multitudes receive this bright light.

Primal Vow, the Name, the Act of Right Assurance,
Vow that by sincere mind and joyful faith,
Great Nirvana equal to the Buddha
We have attained by the fulfillment of the Vow.

Why did the World-honored One come into this world?
To expound the ocean of Amida's Primal Vow;
In this evil world of five defilements
We should believe the Buddha's true words.

We, by a single thought of Joy in the Vow,
passions though unsevered, will attain Nirvana.
Whether wicked, good or in-between, all are the same,
as of one taste are all rivers entering the sea.

Light of compassion ever shining protects us,
Darkest ignorance it has already overcome;
still, the clouds and mist of greed, delusion and rage
always cover the sky of shinjin;

Yet, as the clouds and mist obscure the sun's light,
under them is Light and no darkness at all;
when receiving faith with greatest joy and reverence,
we at once transcend the five evil realms.

Whether good or evil, if ordinary folk
hear and trust the Buddha's Universal Vow,
great and highest is their understanding, He said:
White Lotus Flowers they are called.

Buddha Amida's Primal Vow, the Nembutsu,
is, for haughty, evil people of wrong views,
difficult indeed to receive in joyful faith,
of all difficulties, the most difficult of all.

Discourse writers of the western land of India
and the noble masters of China and Japan
showed the foremost purpose Shakyamuni came to us:
Making clear Amida's Primal Vow to fill our needs.

Shakyamuni Buddha on Mount Lanka foretold
to the assembly that in Southern India
One called Nagarjuna would come to crush
all wrong views on being and non-being,

And proclaim the unsurpassed Mahayana Way
to the stage of joy and birth in Sukhavati;
while self-power ways are like trudging over land,
Other-Power Faith is like a pleasant ocean trip.

When Amida Buddha's Primal Vow comes to mind,
all at once we reach the Stage of Right Assurance;
just by firmly saying the Tathagata's Name,
we repay our debt to His compassion and Great Vow.

Master Vasubandhu wrote that he took
refuge in the Buddha of Unhindered Light:
by the Larger Sutra he explained the Great Vow
by which we can leap over samsara crosswise

By the Power of the Primal Vow the One Mind
shows itself in its resolve to save the multitudes,
when on entry to the treasure-sea of merit great,
without fail will join the Great Assemblage.

And upon reaching the world of lotus-store,
We will see true suchness, attain the Dharma-body,
playing in the evil woods with mystic powers,
taking any form to save samsaric beings.

King Wu Ti knew Donran was a bodhisattva,
venerating him and facing his direction;
Bodhiruci gave Donran a Pure Land Sutra, and
Donran burned his Taoist books to seek the Land of Bliss.

Commenting on Vasubandhu's text, he made it clear,
Certain cause of Pureland Birth is from Amida's Vow:
Other-Power saves us, then returns us to this world,
Stage of Right Assurance comes alone from shinjin.

When, in evil and deluded beings, faith arise,
it makes them see birth-and-death as Nirvana;
failing not to reach the Land of Infinite Light,
everywhere they all will save all sentient beings.

Tao-ch'o determined that the Path of Sages fails,
but the Pure Land Path alone will clearly save us.
thousands of self-power acts of merit he dismissed,
urging us just to chant the Name of Perfect Good,

Kindly showed the threefold faiths, both perfect and flawed,
help in time of Semblance, Dying, and Extincted Law;
If, whatever we have done, we meet the Great Vow,
we shall reach the Land of Peace, attain the fruit supreme.

Shan-tao alone made clear the Buddha's true intent:
Pity both for those who practice good or do the gravest evils,
that the Light and Name are both cause and condition
for their entry to the Wisdom-Ocean of the Vow,

Where they receive faith of diamond strength
with a happy thought of oneness with Amida,
and to have the three great insights of Queen Vaidehi,
then to find Eternal Bliss in Dharma Nature.

Genshin widely spread the One Great Teaching with one thought:
Refuge in the Land of Peace and Provision,
by deep faith alone and not in deeds of merit,
toward the Land of Recompense and not the Transformed Land.

Those of heavy sin should say the Buddha's Name alone,
just as I do, for I too am in His embrace.
Though my evil passions block my sight from seeing it,
ceaselessly shines on me his Compassionate Great Light

Our Master Honen in the Dharma was well-versed,
pitying both good and wicked ordinary folk.
In Japan he taught the True Way to Enlightenment,
spreading in this evil world the chosen Primal Vow.

Birth-and-death cycles in samsara's house
happen surely when we harbor doubt in our hearts;
Rapid entry to the City of Unmade Peace
Necessarily is realized by faith.

Bodhisattvas, teachers, others who have spread this teaching
rescue countless evil beings, totally defiled;
Priest or lay, we living should of one mind be,
and believe in the words of these illumined masters.

(Provided by: http://web.mit.edu/stclair/www/amida.html)

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

THE SMALLER SUKHAVATIVYUHA SUTRA
or
The Sutra on the Buddha Amitayus

Translated from the Chinese Version of Kumarajiva by Nishu Utsuki
The Educational Department of the West Hongwanji
Kyoto, Japan: 1924
Public Domain.
This electronic version may be copied and distributed free and without permission provided that it is not altered in any way.

1. Thus have I heard: Once the Buddha was dwelling in the Anathapindada Garden of Jetavana in the country of Shravasti together with a large company of Bhikshus of twelve hundred and fifty members. They were all great Arhats, well known among people, (to wit): Shariputra the elder, Mahamaudgalyayana, Mahakashyapa, Mahakatyayana, Mahakaushthila, Revata, Shuddhipanthaka, Nanda, Ananda, Rahula, Gavampati, Pindola-Bharadvaja, Kalodayin, Mahakapphina, Vakkula, Aniruddha, etc., all great Shravakas [lit. disciples]; and with many Bodhisattva-Mahasattvas, (such as), Manjushri, Prince of the Lord of Truth, Bodhisattva Ajita, Bodhisattva Gandhahastin, Bodhisattva Nityodyukta, etc., all great Bodhisattvas; and also with a large company of innumerable devas, (such as) Shakrodevanam-Indra, etc.

2. Then the Buddha addressed Shariputra, the elder, and said, 'Beyond a hundred thousand kotis of Buddha-lands westwards from here, there is a world named Sukhavati. In that world there is a Buddha, Amita(-ayus) by name, now dwelling and preaching the law. Shariputra, why is that country named Sukhavati? The living beings in that country have no pains, but receive pleasures only. Therefore, it is called Sukhavati.

3. 'Again, Shariputra, in the land Sukhavati (there are) seven rows of balustrades, seven rows of fine nets, and seven rows of arrayed trees; they are all of four gems and surround and enclose (the land). For this reason the land is called Sukhavati.

4, 'Again, Shariputra, in the land Sukhavati there are lakes of the seven gems, in which is filled water with the eight meritorious qualities. The lake-bases are strewn with golden sand, and the stairs of the four sides are made of gold, silver, beryl, and crystal. On land there are stories and galleries adorned with gold, silver, beryl, crystal, white coral, red pearl and diamond [lit. agate]. The lotus-flowers in the lakes, large as chariot wheels, are blue-colored with blue splendor, yellow-colored with yellow splendor, red-colored with red splendor, white-colored with white splendor, and (they are all) the most exquisite and purely fragrant. Shariputra, the land Sukhavati is arrayed with such good qualities and adornments.

5. 'Again, Shariputra, in that Buddha-land there are heavenly musical instruments always played on; gold is spread on the ground; and six times every day and night it showers Mandarava blossoms. Usually in the serene morning lit. dawn] all of those who live in that land fill their plates with those wonderful blossoms, and (go to) make offering to a hundred thousand kotis of Buddhas of other regions; and at the time of the meal they come back to their own country, and take their meal and have a walk. Shariputra, the Sukhavati land is arrayed with such good qualities and adornments.

6. 'And again, Shariputra, in that country there are always various wonderful birds of different colors, -- swan, peacock, parrot, Chari, Kalavinka and the bird of double-heads [lit. double-lives]. Six times every day and night all those birds sing in melodious tune, and that tune proclaims the Five Virtues [lit. organs], the Five powers, the Seven Bodhi-paths, the Eight Noble Truths, and other laws of the kind. The living beings in that land, having heard that singing, all invoke the Buddha, invoke the Dharma, and invoke the Sangha. Shariputra, you should not think that these birds are in fact born as punishment for sin. What is the reason? (Because), in that Buddha-land there exist not the Three Evil Realms. Shariputra, in that Buddha-land there are not (to be heard) even the names of the Three Evil Realms. How could there be the realms themselves! All those birds are what Buddha Amitayus miraculously created with the desire to let them spread the voice of the Law. Shariputra, (when) in that Buddha-land a gentle breeze happens to blow, the precious trees in rows and the begemmed nets emit a delicate enrapturing tune, and it is just as if a hundred thousand musical instruments played at the same time. Everybody who hears that music naturally conceives the thought to invoke the Buddha, to invoke the Dharma, and to invoke the Sangha. Shariputra, that Buddha-land is arrayed with such good qualities and adornments.

7. 'Shariputra, what do you think in your mind, for what reason that Buddha is called Amita(-abha)? Shariputra, the light of that Buddha is boundless and shining without impediments all over the countries of the ten quarters. Therefore he is called Amita(-abha). Again, Shariputra, the life of that Buddha and of his people is endless and boundless in Asamkhya-kalpas, so he is named Amita(-ayus). Shariputra, since Buddha Amitayus attained Buddhahood, (it has passed) now ten Kalpas. Again, Shariputra, that Buddha has numerous Shravakas or disciples, who are all Arhats and whose number cannot be known by (ordinary) calculation. (The number of) Bodhisattvas (cannot be known) also. Shariputra, that Buddha-land is arrayed with such good qualities and adornments.

8. 'Again, Shariputra, the beings born in the land Sukhavati are all Avinivartaniya. Among them is a multitude of beings bound to one birth only; and their number, being extremely large, cannot be expressed by (ordinary) calculation. Only can it be mentioned in boundless Asamkhya-kalpas. Shariputra, the sentient beings who hear (this account) ought to put up their prayer that they may be born into that country; for they will be able to be in the same place together with those noble personages. Shariputra, by means of small good works [lit. roots] or virtues no one can be born in that country.

9. 'Shariputra, if there be a good man or a good woman, who, on hearing of Buddha Amitayus, keeps his name (in mind) with thoughts undisturbed for one day, two days, three days, four days, five days, six days, or seven days, that person, when about to die, (will see) Amitayus Buddha accompanied by his holy host appear before him; and immediately after his death, he with his mind undisturbed can be born into the Sukhavati land of Buddha Amitayus. Shariputra, as I witness this benefit, I say these words; Every being who listens to this preaching ought to offer up prayer with the desire to be born into that country.

10. 'Shariputra, as I now glorify the inconceivable excellences of Amitayus Buddha, there are also in the Eastern quarters Buddha Akshobhya, Buddha Merudhvaja, Buddha Mahameru, Buddha Meruprabhasa, Buddha Manjughosha, and Buddhas as many as the sands of the River Ganga, each of whom, in his own country stretching out his long broad tongue that covers three thousand greater worlds completely, proclaims these truthful words; All you sentient beings believe in this Sutra, which is approved and protected by all the Buddhas, and in which are glorified the inconceivable excellences (of Buddha Amitayus).

11. 'Shariputra, in the Southern worlds there are Buddha Candrasuryapradipa, Buddha Yacahprabha, Buddha Maharciskandha, Buddha Merupradipa, Buddha Anantavirya, and Buddhas as many as the sands of the River Ganga, each of whom, in his own country stretching out his long broad tongue that covers three thousand greater worlds completely, proclaims these truthful words: All you sentient beings believe in this Sutra, which is approved and protected by all the Buddhas, and in which are glorified the inconceivable excellences (of Buddha Amitayus).

12. 'Shariputra, in the Western worlds there are Buddha Amitayus, Buddha Amitalakshana, Buddha Amitadhvaja, Buddha Mahaprabha, Buddha Mahanirbhasa, Buddha Ratnala kshana, Buddha Shuddharashmiprabha, and Buddhas as many as the sands of the River Ganga, each of whom, in his own country stretching out his long broad tongue that covers three thousand greater worlds completely, proclaims these truthful words: All you sentient beings believe in this Sutra, which is approved and protected by all the Buddhas, and in which are glorified the inconceivable excellences (of Buddha Amitayus).

13. 'Shariputra, in the Northern worlds there are Buddha Arciskandha, Buddha Vaishvanaranirghosha, Buddha Dushpradharsha, Buddha Adityasambhava, Buddha Jaliniprabha, and Buddhas as many as the sands of the River Ganga, each of whom, in his own country stretching out his long broad tongue that covers three thousand greater worlds completely, proclaims these truthful words: All you sentient beings believe in this Sutra, which is approved and protected by all the Buddhas, and in which are glorified the inconceivable excellences (of Buddha Amitayus).

14. 'Shariputra, in the Nadir worlds there are Buddha Simha, Buddha Yacas, Buddha Yashaprabhava, Buddha Dharma, Buddha Dharmadhvaja, Buddha Dharmadhara, and Buddhas as many as the sands of the River Ganga, each of whom, in his own country stretching out his long broad tongue that covers three thousand greater worlds completely, proclaims these truthful words: All you sentient beings believe in this Sutra, which is approved and protected by all the Buddhas, and in which are glorified the inconceivable excellences (of Buddha Amitayus).

15. 'Shariputra, in the Zenith words there are Buddha Brahmaghosha, Buddha Nakshatraraja, Buddha Gandhottama, Buddha Gandhaprabhasa, Buddha Maharciskandha, Buddha Ratnakusumasampushpitagatra, Buddha Salendraraja, Buddha Ratnotpalashri, Buddha Sarvarthadarsha, Buddha Sumerukalpa, and Buddhas as many as the sands of the River Ganges^1, each of whom, in his own country stretching out his long broad tongue that covers three thousand greater worlds completely, proclaims these truthful words: All you sentient beings believe in this Sutra, which is approved and protected by all the Buddhas, and in which are glorified the inconceivable excellences (of Buddha Amitayus).

16. 'Shariputra, what do you think in your mind, why it is called the Sutra approved and protected by all the Buddhas? Shariputra, if there be a good man or a good woman who listens to those Buddhas' invocation of the name (of Buddha Amitayus) and the name of this Sutra, that good man or woman will be protected by all the Buddhas and never fail to attain Anuttara-samyaksambodhi. For this reason, Shariputra, all of you should believe in my words and in what all the Buddhas proclaim. Shariputra, if there are men who have already made, are now making, or shall make, prayer with the desire to be born in the land of Buddha Amitayus, they never fail to attain Anuttara-samyaksambodhi, and have been born, are now being born, or shall be born in that country. Therefore, Shariputra, a good man or good woman who has the faith ought to offer up prayers to be born in that land.

17. 'Shariputra, as I am now praising the inconceivable excellences of those Buddhas, so all those Buddhas are magnifying the inconceivable excellences of myself, saying these words: Shakyamuni, the Buddha, has successfully achieved a rare thing of extreme difficulty; he has attained Anuttara-samyaksambodhi in the Saha world in the evil period of five corruptions -- Corruption of Kalpa, Corruption of Belief, Corruption of Passions, Corruption of Living Beings, and Corruption of Life; and for the sake of all the sentient beings he is preaching the Law which is not easy to accept. Shariputra, you must see that in the midst of this evil world of five corruptions I have achieved this difficult thing of attaining Anuttara-samyaksambodhi, and for the benefit of all the beings I am preaching the Law which is difficult to be accepted. This is how it is esteemed as (a thing of) extreme difficulty.'

The Buddha having preached this Sutra, Shariputra and Bhikshus, and Devas, men, Asuras, etc., of all the worlds, who have listened to the Buddha's preaching, believed and accepted with joy, made worship, and went away.

Buddhabhashita-Amitayuh-Sutra

Note:

^1 original reads "Ganga".

(Provided by: http://web.mit.edu/stclair/www/smaller.html)
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