Author Topic: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?  (Read 2429 times)

Offline NepalianBuddhist

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #15 on: November 07, 2013, 06:22:38 pm »
you can live in the USA and pretend your in Mexico all you want, but until you actually go to Mexico, you're not really there. ditto pure land


If you eat a hallucinogenic peyote cactus, a visionary guide will spirit himself (The Mexican desert) ... in the form of a eagle. 
« Last Edit: November 07, 2013, 06:26:01 pm by Wesley1982 »

Offline Ron-the-Elder

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2013, 06:50:52 am »
I have always imagined my ideal spirit leader / guide to be "The Kodiak Bear"

What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2013, 07:12:01 am »
I think the pure land People are talking about a literal place or plane of existence you go to in your next life, not a state of mind you can be in right now.

Though traditionally accessing a different plane of existence requires a different state of mind - so perhaps this is a false dichotomy?

Offline Lobster

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2013, 11:52:10 pm »
Up to Nov 17 2013, this thread is an illustration of 'a Pureland' environment in cyberspace.
http://www.dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.php?f=66&t=12524

On the web there may be images and websites conducive to a pure vision. The practice and association with Amitabha will reinforce the association and resonance. Some people expect heaven or pureland only when dead. OK, don't hold your breath.  :smack:

Some wish to bring the Amitabha 'blessing' into the mundane realm.  :jinsyx:

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #19 on: November 09, 2013, 02:33:45 am »
Lobster, are you sure that you listed the correct link?

The reason I ask is because the thread in question at Dharma Wheel appears to be specific to the Theravada tradition, kamma, ect., and not related to Pure Land --- as far as I recall, Amitabha is not mentioned, not even in passing.

Offline Lobster

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #20 on: November 09, 2013, 03:33:05 am »
 :namaste:
I am not a Highlander or Pure Purelander.

The feel of the original poster was can we manifest aspects of a Pureland into our mundane existence. I would suggest for better or worse, some people do. Here is another example:
http://www.dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.php?f=89&t=13273

There are numerous examples from all Buddhist traditions of people invoking the positive Pureland realm . . . I would suggest similar examples can be found in other religions . . . 'on heaven as it is on earth' one might say . . . :namaste:



Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #21 on: November 09, 2013, 03:59:50 am »
Good points --- a "pure land" (tierrapura) can also be a state of mind in the present moment.

Offline NepalianBuddhist

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #22 on: November 23, 2013, 05:13:44 pm »
It is actually the merit field of Buddha from aeons past 3500 years of Pure Land (I think) ...

Offline Ron-the-Elder

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #23 on: November 23, 2013, 08:02:37 pm »
It is actually the merit field of Buddha from aeons past 3500 years of Pure Land (I think) ...

Hi, Wesley.  Could  you please provide a link or reference, which connects to what you have written so that those who are not familiar with what you wrote can do further research and study of the topic.

Thanks,

_/\_Ron
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

Offline NepalianBuddhist

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #24 on: November 23, 2013, 11:25:41 pm »
Look at Access to Insight. http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ And you enter in the search topic at the top right of the browser page.


Offline Northern Light

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #25 on: January 14, 2014, 02:20:45 pm »
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Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?

Each Pure Land practitioner will have a different view on this question, (and to a degree different sects have differing views).

To me (and many other Pure Land Buddhists in the western world) :-

- Amida never lived; he was referred to in teachings by Shakyamuni in the context of the embodiment of infinite universal love and compassion. It could be considered that Amida is real but unborn.   I consider Amida as the infinite compassion of the universe that created me.  This is very different to a God.   I make my own choices and I carve out my destiny - there is no praying - but if I live my life so that all of my actions are in honour of, and offered to Amida, which is infinite love, then I am living in infinite love.    I am never praying of 'activating a power' from Amida, I am calling on my own nature of infinite love, which is at one with Amida.

- The Pure Land, to me (and many but not all Pure Land Buddhists) is absolutely not a physical location or 'place'.  The Pure Land is where you will be reborn, when you are walking with Amida (infinite love) in your heart, and all your actions are with and for Amida.   This need not be after death.     If every action you ever took was rooted in compassion for others and unconditional love, would your world not be pretty pure? ... wonderfully happy?   The Pure Land can be in the next life but it can equally be in this life (we are reborn every second we live). When you call to Amida, when you have faith in the infinite love of the universe, you will arrive in the Pure Land.     If you do not practice the Nembutsu (Pure land practice; mantra) with a sincere heart, then clearly you will not be in the Pure Land.

I hope this helps.

I would add that to some Pure Land Buddhists (what we could call Pure Land Literalists! :lmfao:) Amida is a real person and the Pure Land is a real paradise in the west, where they will physically birth in the next life; to thus practice to enlightenment, without suffering or hindrance.

Just as in most religions there are literalists and non-literalists.


« Last Edit: January 14, 2014, 02:24:47 pm by Urban Dharmic Warrior »

Offline Potential

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #26 on: January 18, 2014, 05:58:47 pm »
I've always believed that Pure Land is a Practice done in Meditation with the use of Visualizations according to whatever deity/Buddha that you are using.

Externally, there is no need, we make our Pure Lands by abiding with the Noble Eight-Fold Path.

Ultimately, I see it in comparison with the Six Yogas of Naropa. Constantly reminding ourselves of said Pure Land, constantly meditating on it, till we see it in our dreams, taking it to the next level of actually seeing it thru advanced visualization practices in dark rooms, and finally maintaining consciousness thru the death process while performing the Pure Land practice to be reborn into that Pure Land.

I believe that this is ultimately how Rebirth operates, our Karmas decide our next rebirth. How?
The constant repetition of our desires are ingrained on our minds, so that when death happens, that is where our minds take us.

So if I wanted to be a Dolphin in my next life, my life would obsess about Dolphins, I would feel empathy towards them, I would dream about them, then when I die, I take rebirth in the animal realm.

Pure Land is Rebirth, that's why they call it being reborn into a Pure Land.
Just living life like any human or animal, cyclic existence comes to us all. But making a concentrated effort to be reborn into a certain Pure Land is up to us and the effort we put into it.

Offline Northern Light

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #27 on: January 19, 2014, 12:51:18 pm »

Few pure land schools have any focus on meditation.  Practice is the Nembutsu; the chanting of Amida's name.  Some even discourage meditation practices because it could be said that it shows a lack of faith in Amida's "other power".... a sort of "I'll just do some practice myself, in case Amida doesn't manage to save me or doesn't exist" style approach.

The nembutsu is the sole practice, except of course where people syncretize pure land with other schools like zen.

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #28 on: January 19, 2014, 01:26:39 pm »
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Charles Luk identifies three meditation practices as being widely used in Pure Land Buddhism.

Mindfulness of Amitābha Buddha

Repeating the name of Amitābha Buddha is traditionally a form of Mindfulness of the Buddha (Skt. buddhānusmṛti). This term was translated into Chinese as nianfo, by which it is popularly known in English. The practice is described as calling the buddha to mind by repeating his name, to enable the practitioner to bring all his or her attention upon that buddha. This may be done vocally or mentally, and with or without the use of Buddhist prayer beads. Those who practice this method often commit to a fixed set of repetitions per day. According to tradition, the second patriarch of the Pure Land school, Shandao, is said to have practiced this day and night without interruption, each time emitting light from his mouth. Therefore he was bestowed with the title "Great Master of Light" by the Tang Dynasty emperor Gao Zong.

In Chinese Buddhism, there is a related practice called the "dual path of Chán and Pure Land cultivation", which is also called the "dual path of emptiness and existence." As taught by Nan Huai-Chin, the name of Amitābha Buddha is recited slowly, and the mind is emptied out after each repetition. When idle thoughts arise, the phrase is repeated again to clear them. With constant practice, the mind is able to remain peacefully in emptiness, culminating in the attainment of samādhi.


Pure Land Rebirth Dhāraṇī

Engraving of a Sanskrit dhāraṇī for Amitābha Buddha, written in the Siddhaṃ script. Mogao Caves, Dunhuang, ChinaRepeating the Pure Land Rebirth Dhāraṇī is another method in Pure Land Buddhism. Similar to the mindfulness practice of repeating the name of Amitābha Buddha, this dhāraṇī is another method of meditation and recitation in Pure Land Buddhism. The repetition of this dhāraṇī is said to be very popular among traditional Chinese Buddhists. It is traditionally preserved in Sanskrit, and it is said that when a devotee succeeds in realizing singleness of mind by repeating a mantra, its true and profound meaning will be clearly revealed.

namo amitābhāya tathāgatāya tadyathā
amṛtabhave amṛtasaṃbhave
amṛtavikrānte amṛtavikrāntagāmini
gagana kīrtīchare svāhā

The Chinese use a version of this dhāraṇī that was transliterated from Sanskrit into Chinese characters, called the "Mantra for Birth in the Pure Land" (Sheng Jingtu Zhou) also known as the Pure Land Rebirth Dhāraṇī (Wangsheng Jingtu Shenzhou). The translation exists in various forms and this is one commonly used.


Visualization methods

Another practice found in Pure Land Buddhism is meditative contemplation and visualization of Amitābha Buddha, his attendant bodhisattvas, and the Pure Land. The basis of this is found in the Amitāyurdhyāna Sūtra ("Amitābha Meditation Sūtra"), in which the Buddha describes to Queen Vaidehi the practices of thirteen progressive visualization methods, corresponding to the attainment of various levels of rebirth in the Pure Land. The first of these steps is contemplation of a setting sun, until the visualization is clear whether the eyes are open or closed. Each progressive step adds complexity to the visualization of Sukhāvatī, with the final contemplation being an expansive visual which includes the Amitābha Buddha and his attendant bodhisattvas. According to Inagaki Hisao, this progressive visualization method was widely followed in the past for the purpose of developing samādhi. Visualization practises for Amitābha are also popular in Japanese Shingon Buddhism as well as other schools of Esoteric Buddhism.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pure_Land_Buddhism#Meditation

Offline Potential

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Re: Can anywhere be Buddha's Pure Land?
« Reply #29 on: January 20, 2014, 01:03:18 am »
According to Paul Williams, a more accurate Sanskrit title for this text would be Amitāyurbuddhānusmṛti Sūtra, meaning "Amitāyus Buddha-mindfulness Sūtra."[1]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amitayurdhyana_Sutra

Amitayurdhyana Sutra           佛說無量壽佛經
Longer Sukhāvatīvyūha Sūtra …………….... 無量壽經     (Infinite Life Sutra)
Shorter Sukhāvatīvyūha Sūtra. 佛說阿彌陀     (Amitabha Sutra)

佛說阿彌陀
The first two characters can be omitted the 佛, 說, for it just says: "Buddha, speaks (the)".
無量壽 is Amitayus.
阿彌陀(佛) is Amita(bha).

OK,  :eek: I was going to point out that there are two different ones, one is Amitabha,
the other Amitayus, and that the Chinese for each was different as well.
I was wanting to make sure that Amitabha and Amitayus were not being confused with each other, be it that there is very little information on the differences, I did find this: http://www.unc.edu/~duggins1/Amitayus.html
Perhaps this was a useless endeavor. I'll post it just for the fun of it. :brick:

 


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