Author Topic: How to get started in Pure Land?  (Read 2305 times)

Offline Methexis

  • Member
  • Posts: 1
    • View Profile
Re: How to get started in Pure Land?
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2013, 07:10:30 am »
Why don't you just pray to God to get to paradise? See this is what your own culture has to offer ... why are you looking for new ideas like Amithaba and pure land which originate from  a foreign a culture? After many efforts you will get to the same result you would have got to much easier if you had stuck to what your own culture has to offer.  :fu:

What kind of advice is this?

If you just follow tradition you never grow, spiritually. The Buddha taught us to not blindly follow tradition in the Kalama Sutta.

Why didn't Gautama Siddharta just follow tradition? If he did, we would have only Hinduism, but no Buddhism.

Why didn't Tanluan just follow tradition and stay a Taoist? Why did he have to burn his Taoist texts and turn to a foreign religion ( Pure Land is from India )? If he never betrayed his tradition, he would never become a Pure Land Patriarch!

Don't follow tradition - follow what you yourself feel drawn to, what you see is conductive to truth and to the good; and what is praised by people you deem wise.

Christianity and Pure Land Buddhism are two different things.
Pure Land Buddhism is Buddhism. That means one does not pray to any Creator God (brahma).

Amitabha is a Buddha, not a god. Amitabha didn't create the world. The world spontaneously is, and has been forever; there's no known beginning of samsara and/or it's irrelevant.

You start with the Pure Land practice by:

1) seeing how you are a being full of sin, delusion and this world is impermanent and full of suffering, you repent and therefore
2) long to be reborn in the Pure Land where Amitabha teaches the pure Dharma and will swiftly allow you to achieve Buddhahood
3) give up self-power and say the Name: Namo Amita Buddha! just the name, say, chant, whatever - just keep it in mind always

This is basically it. Once the machinations, calculations and conceptual thinking in your mind is halted by the Name, the mind is single-mindedly focusing on the Buddha, and then the Mind is the Buddha (as it is writ in the Contemplation Sutra)

I'm not saying Christ was not a Bodhisattva, he was. He was the Western Mahabodhisattva. I'm not saying one cannot accrue good karma and merit through Christianity. In fact, if one reads the Lotus Sutra well, one sees how ALL paths lead to Buddhahood.

But only the Pure Land Way is the shortcut way, because of the working of the 18th Vow.

Christianity is not, per se, a path to Buddhahood. And that's the only true way out of birth-and-death. So, even if you are the perfect Christian, you will still have to follow the path of the buddhas in a future life. But how do you know you will be successful? Even if you are a perfect Christian in the next 10 lives, the 11th you may fall back into the animal realm. Even if you don't believe in rebirth (although all Buddhists should) - nevertheless it remains true Christianity does not teach a path to Buddhahood. Even heaven is still within existence. But the Pure Land Way's true core lies beyond the confines of samsara where we cannot speak of neither existence, nor non-existence. This is because Pure Land is still Mahayana buddhism, and it is orthodox teaching that all existence is mind-only.

Dharmakara became a Buddha because of his practice, his faith and most of all the magnitude of his Vow. All buddhas in the 10 directions praise His Vow, because it is inclusive of everyone, even icchantikas.

Similarly when you practice 3 things are essential: faith, vow and practice. Vow to be reborn in Pure Land and direct all merit to that goal; have faith in the efficacy of the Vow - and, this is the essantial point , - KEEP THE NAME, HOLD THE NAME. The Name will save you. You will not save yourself with your self-centered effort. Even if you are successful with self-power that will only increase pride.  Even good karma is still karma. only the Name saves.

These are the essentials. Keep to them and practice like your hair is on fire (as the Pure Land Patriarch Mahabodhisattva Nagarjuna has instructed us).

Don't listen to those who slander this path. The sutras are clear about where people who slander the Saddharma will end up ... I better not speak further.

You have all my hopes.

Namo Amitabhaya!
« Last Edit: October 12, 2013, 07:22:11 am by Methexis »

Offline Ron-the-Elder

  • Member
  • Posts: 4474
  • May all beings live rightly and harmoniously.
    • View Profile
Re: How to get started in Pure Land?
« Reply #16 on: October 12, 2013, 08:39:23 am »
Why don't you just pray to God to get to paradise? See this is what your own culture has to offer ... why are you looking for new ideas like Amithaba and pure land which originate from  a foreign a culture? After many efforts you will get to the same result you would have got to much easier if you had stuck to what your own culture has to offer.  :fu:

By "your own culture", do you mean the ones that arose in Jerusalem over two thousand years ago? Or, do you mean the ones that arose in North Africa four thousand years ago?

Buddhist traditions are just as foreign as Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, The Abrahemic Religions, which have been transplanted from these regions to The West.  Just ask The Japanese, The Chinese, and The Tibetans, who moved to the west and brought their practices with them, and decided to adopt Christianity when they got here just to fit in.
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 namumahaparinirvanasvaha

  • Member
  • Posts: 770
    • View Profile
Re: How to get started in Pure Land?
« Reply #17 on: October 12, 2013, 05:26:10 pm »
Why don't you just pray to God to get to paradise? See this is what your own culture has to offer ... why are you looking for new ideas like Amithaba and pure land which originate from  a foreign a culture? After many efforts you will get to the same result you would have got to much easier if you had stuck to what your own culture has to offer.  :fu:

What kind of advice is this?

If you just follow tradition you never grow, spiritually. The Buddha taught us to not blindly follow tradition in the Kalama Sutta.

Why didn't Gautama Siddharta just follow tradition? If he did, we would have only Hinduism, but no Buddhism.

Why didn't Tanluan just follow tradition and stay a Taoist? Why did he have to burn his Taoist texts and turn to a foreign religion ( Pure Land is from India )? If he never betrayed his tradition, he would never become a Pure Land Patriarch!

Don't follow tradition - follow what you yourself feel drawn to, what you see is conductive to truth and to the good; and what is praised by people you deem wise.

Christianity and Pure Land Buddhism are two different things.
Pure Land Buddhism is Buddhism. That means one does not pray to any Creator God (brahma).

Amitabha is a Buddha, not a god. Amitabha didn't create the world. The world spontaneously is, and has been forever; there's no known beginning of samsara and/or it's irrelevant.

You start with the Pure Land practice by:

1) seeing how you are a being full of sin, delusion and this world is impermanent and full of suffering, you repent and therefore
2) long to be reborn in the Pure Land where Amitabha teaches the pure Dharma and will swiftly allow you to achieve Buddhahood
3) give up self-power and say the Name: Namo Amita Buddha! just the name, say, chant, whatever - just keep it in mind always

This is basically it. Once the machinations, calculations and conceptual thinking in your mind is halted by the Name, the mind is single-mindedly focusing on the Buddha, and then the Mind is the Buddha (as it is writ in the Contemplation Sutra)

I'm not saying Christ was not a Bodhisattva, he was. He was the Western Mahabodhisattva. I'm not saying one cannot accrue good karma and merit through Christianity. In fact, if one reads the Lotus Sutra well, one sees how ALL paths lead to Buddhahood.

But only the Pure Land Way is the shortcut way, because of the working of the 18th Vow.

Christianity is not, per se, a path to Buddhahood. And that's the only true way out of birth-and-death. So, even if you are the perfect Christian, you will still have to follow the path of the buddhas in a future life. But how do you know you will be successful? Even if you are a perfect Christian in the next 10 lives, the 11th you may fall back into the animal realm. Even if you don't believe in rebirth (although all Buddhists should) - nevertheless it remains true Christianity does not teach a path to Buddhahood. Even heaven is still within existence. But the Pure Land Way's true core lies beyond the confines of samsara where we cannot speak of neither existence, nor non-existence. This is because Pure Land is still Mahayana buddhism, and it is orthodox teaching that all existence is mind-only.

Dharmakara became a Buddha because of his practice, his faith and most of all the magnitude of his Vow. All buddhas in the 10 directions praise His Vow, because it is inclusive of everyone, even icchantikas.

Similarly when you practice 3 things are essential: faith, vow and practice. Vow to be reborn in Pure Land and direct all merit to that goal; have faith in the efficacy of the Vow - and, this is the essantial point , - KEEP THE NAME, HOLD THE NAME. The Name will save you. You will not save yourself with your self-centered effort. Even if you are successful with self-power that will only increase pride.  Even good karma is still karma. only the Name saves.

These are the essentials. Keep to them and practice like your hair is on fire (as the Pure Land Patriarch Mahabodhisattva Nagarjuna has instructed us).

Don't listen to those who slander this path. The sutras are clear about where people who slander the Saddharma will end up ... I better not speak further.

You have all my hopes.

Namo Amitabhaya!
:jinsyx: :jinsyx: :jinsyx:

Offline NepalianBuddhist

  • Member
  • Posts: 707
    • View Profile
Re: How to get started in Pure Land?
« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2013, 11:28:38 am »
The Bible's version of the "Pure Land" meant reaching the land of milk and honey which was Prime estate for the Israelites.

 


SimplePortal 2.3.3 © 2008-2010, SimplePortal