Interesting Recitation Method

Interesting Recitation Method

Postby Nosta » Mon Oct 08, 2012 10:15 pm

I found an interesting way for recitation in this video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8NMgftCJPyE&feature=relmfu

See beginning on minute 4:22.

The method, taught originally by Master Yin-kwang, is this: after each time you say "Namo Amitabha Buddha", say a number, like "Namo Amitabha Budha. One. Namo Amitabha. Two. Namo Amitabha. Three.", etc, until you reach ten then you start again on number 1. This is a great method to force your mind being concentrated. You will have lesser chances of getting wandering toughts in this way.

Thats the method.

By the way, i get to know the videos of Venerable Sheng Yen on another discussion thread on this forum:
http://www.dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.php?f=41&t=51
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Re: Interesting Recitation Method

Postby MattyNottwo » Tue Nov 27, 2012 9:48 pm

One of my favorite methods is to silently say Amitabha's name; synchronizing it with the in-hale and ex-hale. I've found
this practice in Theravada Buddhism with "Buddho." In Hinduism frequently and even in some ancient monastic christian
practices of putting the name on the breath. I found it in a book called "Taming the monkey mind: A Guide to Pure Land
Practice" by Cheng Wei-an. It's a nice thing to stay calm and in the present moment and can be done anywhere anytime.

:smile:
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Re: Interesting Recitation Method

Postby Kaji » Wed Nov 28, 2012 7:13 am

Recently I have been doing a twist of the "count to ten" recitation method - instead of simply counting from one to ten, I contemplate the layers of a stupa, one by one forming from the ground up (see my avatar pic). As there are five layers in each stupa (representing earth, water, fire, air and emptiness), to count to ten I contemplate the formation of two stupa, left and right.
Namas triya-dhvikānāṃ sarva tathāgatānām!
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Re: Interesting Recitation Method

Postby Nosta » Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:16 pm

MattyNottwo wrote:One of my favorite methods is to silently say Amitabha's name; synchronizing it with the in-hale and ex-hale. I've found
this practice in Theravada Buddhism with "Buddho." In Hinduism frequently and even in some ancient monastic christian
practices of putting the name on the breath. I found it in a book called "Taming the monkey mind: A Guide to Pure Land
Practice" by Cheng Wei-an. It's a nice thing to stay calm and in the present moment and can be done anywhere anytime.

:smile:


How is that? You inhale and think "Amitabha", then you exhale and think "Amitabha" (once)...is like that? Thanks for sharing us your idea.

Kaji, thanks for your idea. Now i dont have time but later i will explain a similar method that i use.
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Re: Interesting Recitation Method

Postby MattyNottwo » Wed Nov 28, 2012 6:09 pm

The book seemed a little vague on exactly how to do it, but the author hinted that any way a person says Amitabhas' name is
ok. He also mentioned just saying "Amitabha," or saying "Namo Amitabha Buddha" is ok. Silently thinking "Namo" on the inhale, then "Amitabha Buddha" on the exhale seems to work good for me. I've tried silently reciting without the breath, while doing daily activities, and it seems hard to stay focused on what I'm doing and not space out. I don't know if anyone else has this problem.
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Re: Interesting Recitation Method

Postby Nosta » Wed Nov 28, 2012 11:17 pm

Matty, thanks for your tips :)

Kaji, as i said i have a somewhat similar method: i visualize 5 buddhas of a silver color in a position like the 5 dots of a playing dice; then, each time i say "Namo Amitabha Buddha", i will "highlight" a Budha...my mind-eye will be running through each of the 5 Budhas (each Buddha = 1 recitation).
Then i will repeat the process but with 5 golden Buddhas. Using the visualization of silver Buddhas then golden buddhas is a easy way to reach 10 recitations whitout counting them (couting is boring sometimes :)).

5 silver Buddhas + 5 golden = 10 recitations.

After doing a set of 10 recitations i will bend a finger.

This way, by visualizing & using fingers for each group of ten, you can reach quickly 100 recitations without counting.
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Re: Interesting Recitation Method

Postby Kaji » Thu Nov 29, 2012 1:07 am

Thanks for sharing that, Nosta. Like you, I like to visualise my counting instead of merely using numbers. I am predominantly a visual learner and thinker.

I also try to practise another method taught by Ven Yin Guang once a day, in the morning as he suggested. Literally translated from Chinese it can be called the "Ten Recitation Method". In essence you take ten deep and long breaths. Each time you exhale you recite Amitābha's name as many times as your breath allows. You only count your breaths, to ten, and not bother counting the number of recitations per breath. I remember Ven Yin Guang having written that doing this practice early in the morning can improve one's respiratory health, amongst other great benefits. With this method, if you know you recite ten times or more with each exhalation, you can be sure that you will cover 100 recitations.

I have heard from somewhere that one should aim for at least 108 recitations, the number corresponding to our 108 afflictions.

Also a quick note - I have not learned the Sanskrit language, but I learned from someone who has that with the correct grammar it should be "Namo Amitābhāya Buddhāya", or simply "Namo Amitābhāya". I use "Namo Amitābhāya Tathāgathāya" myself. The grammatical rule as I understand it is that "aya" needs to be suffixed to the object of "namo".
Namas triya-dhvikānāṃ sarva tathāgatānām!
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Re: Interesting Recitation Method

Postby Nosta » Thu Nov 29, 2012 11:30 pm

Thanks for remembering that method that i almost forgot.

About the suffix "aya", i am so used to the normal "Namo Amitabha Budha" that it sounds strange using the "aya". :)

Anyway, as you, i am like to visualize. When i need to focus i will use the visualization (i read this tecnique from "Buddhism of Wisdow and Faith") of lotus flowers opening: "As he recites, the practitioner contemplates the four colors of the lotus blossom (blue, yellow, red and white), one color after another without interruption. With his first utterance of the Buddha's name, he visualizes a huge, blue lotus blossom before his eyes, emitting a blue light. With the second utterance, he visualizes a yellow lotus blossom, emitting a yellow light. The third and fourth utterances are accompanied, respectively, by visualization of red and white lotus flowers, each color emitting its own light. He then repeats the visualization in the same sequence. As the flowers appear, he imagines a vague, lingering touch of pure, soft lotus fragrance." (from Buddhism of Wisdow and Faith).

Altought i dont imagine the fragance and i also visualize the background sky (where i see the lotus opening) from the same colour as the lotus (yellow lotus, yellow sky, etc). When i really cant get concentration in my mind, this is really a good method to avoid wandering toughts (speccialy if in each utterance you make quick recitations).
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