The Ten Virtues of Loudly Invoking the Name of Amitābha

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Losal Samten
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The Ten Virtues of Loudly Invoking the Name of Amitābha

Post by Losal Samten » Fri Feb 02, 2018 2:06 pm ... n_Dunhuang

The Tibetan translation:
With regard to the ten virtues of uttering Amita Buddha!:
1) Sleep is cast away from the eyes, and
2) Māra is shocked, and
3) The fame of the voice pervades [the world], and
4) The defilements of the evil states are pacified, and
5) External sounds are suppressed, and
6) The mind is unagitated, and
7) One is endowed with the armor of energy, and
8) All buddhas and bodhisattvas are pleased, and
9) All samādhis are made manifest, and
10) One is born in a purified buddha-field.

From a commentary on the Shorter Sukhāvatīvyūha Sutra entitled Amituojing tongzan shu 阿彌陀經通賛疏, attributed to Kuiji.
The Scripture says: “Śāriputra, in that buddha-land gentle breezes blow, moving the rows of jewelled trees and the jewelled nets, which produce exquisite music, just like that of a hundred thousand kinds of instruments being played together.” The Clarification says: The eighth [ornament of the Land of Bliss] is that breezes blow, producing music.

This discussion is divided into four parts: 1. The wind shakes the jewelled trees. 2. Their voice is like music. 3. Hearing [that music] causes good mindfulness. 4. The completion of the ornaments [of the land]. In the first two expressions here, “gentle breezes” means soft breezes. They are not sudden or violent winds. They blow on the trees and nets, and these subsequently emit exquisite musical sounds. In “just like,” “just” indicates a comparison, “like” a resemblance. It is like a hundred thousand melodies performed together. Soft breezes gently arise and blow the trees and nets. Harmonious sounds then fill the entire universe. Their elegance is the same as that of all sorts of music. Therefore it says “just like that of a hundred thousand kinds of instruments being played together.”

The Clarification says: The third [expression, above, is]: “Hearing causes good mindfulness.” As for “spontaneously” [in the sūtra text], when things work naturally and are resigned to fate, it is termed “spontaneous.” It is not the case that absence of cause is termed “spontaneous.” As for “awakening mindfulness of the Buddha, mindfulness of the Dharma, and mindfulness of the Sangha” [in the sūtra], these are the names of the Three Jewels, as previously explained.

Mindfulness of the Buddha (recitation) is of three types:
1. Mental recitation, in which one has connected thoughts in one’s mind.
2. Softly calling recitation, in which one is able to hear one’s own voice.
3. Loudly calling recitation.

This [in turn] has ten virtues:
1. It can push away sleep.
2. Māra is terrified.
3. The voice reaches everywhere.
4. The sufferings of the three evil realms are pacified.
5. Other sounds are suppressed.
6. The mind is unagitated.
7. One bravely is energetic [in practice].
8. All buddhas are pleased.
9. Samādhi is manifest before one.
10. One attains rebirth in the Pure Land.

One should distinguish four variants: 1. That in which one recites in the mind but does not recite verbally. 2. That in which one recites verbally but does not recite in the mind. 3. That in which one recites both in mind and verbally together. 4. That in which one recites neither in the mind nor verbally. Of these four, the first and the third are correct. The Auspicious sūtra says: “Cool breezes gently arise, neither cold nor hot. They blow the nets and the multi-jewelled trees, which expound the supreme sublime voice of the Teaching. For those who hear that, no defilements arise, and they spontaneously experience pleasure, as one experiences when attaining samādhi.”

Praise of Loudly Reciting the Buddha’s Name, Gaosheng nianfo zan 高聲念佛讃, attributed to the eighth-century monk Fazhao.
[The loud voiced recitation of the name of the Buddha Amitābha]:

1. Can push away the impediment of sleep. Contemplation causes everyone to become free of heavy darkness. Through destroying the impediments, the body and mind become clear. Then one can see the hundred jewelled gates in the Western direction.

2. Shakes the realm of Māras. It makes the mind take refuge in the practice of recitation of the name of the Buddha. If [beings of ] the palace of Māra hear even a single recitation [of the name of the Buddha], they will compassionately honour the Lord of Compassion forever.

3. Makes one’s voice penetrate the entire universe. It stops all sufferings of the evil realms. Everyone able to hear the name of [the Buddha of ] Immeasurable Lifespan will all attain the Pure Land and wander there at will.

4. Pacifies the sufferings of the three evil realms. Instantly [the three realms] transform into a jewelled lotus palace. Evil-doers without exception are located within a flower [before it opens]. Immediately [after it opens] they hear the teaching and awaken to [the fact that all things are] unproduced.

5. Prevents external sounds from entering [one’s mind]. In every thought one approaches the home of the Dharma King, the bright light shines for a long time on the Lapis Lazuli Palace, and the transformationally produced children born there scatter golden flowers.

6. Pacifies one’s mind making it undisturbed. The Pure Land of Amitābha is perfected in thought. Between the trees of the jeweled forest he proclaims the magnificent teaching. Every voice only praises the scriptures of the Great Vehicle.

7. Makes one bravely energetic. The dust of ignorance disappears on its own. Every moment of thought always contemplates the Land of Ultimate Bliss. Amitābha, the Lord of Compassion, bestows the bright pearl [of the teaching].

8. Pleases all Buddhas. They will protect those who have faith [in Amitābha]. All of them together prevent [believers from] backsliding. At the end of their lives, [the believers] will attain a golden body.

9. Makes possible entry into samādhi. It [leads to] final repose, the unconditioned, meditation free of defilements. When one recites, without mental activity one sees all buddhas, and eternally surpasses transmigration, becoming free [from rebirth even as] human or god.

10. Being endowed with these merits, as many as the sands of the Ganges river, the fruit of merit and wisdom is complete, and at the end of one’s life on a lotus flower in the Pure Land, Amitābha with his retinue will himself come to welcome one.
Lacking mindfulness, we commit every wrong. - Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

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