Comparative Studies

Comparison of Saha World (Samsara) & Sukhavati

Master Tsung-tse said,

Now let us compare this world ‘Saha’ (means ‘Endurance’) with the Sukhavati Pure Land.

[1] Here, in Saha, being born in a body of flesh and blood is painful.
There, in the Pure Land, you are born by transformation in a lotus flower, and are free from the pains of birth.

[2] Here, the seasons succeed each other and you get weaker and older day every day.
There, there are no very hot or very cold seasons, and you are free from the pains of aging.

[3] Here, the physical body is hard to temper and often becomes sick.
There, your transformed body is fragrant, clean and pure and free from the pains of sickness.

[4] Here, those who live to be very old are rare and impermanence is swift.
There, life is eternal and lifespan is measureless; you are free from the pains and grief of death.

[5] Here, you will be separated from those you love.
There, you are free of the pain of being parted from loved ones.

[6] Here, enemies hate you, and you have to be with those who resent you.
There, those of the highest virtue are assembled together and you are free from the pain of being with those who hate you.

[7] Here, you may be exhausted, and suffer from hunger and cold, and have unsatisfied cravings.
There, food and clothing and precious things are provided ready-made for you to use.

[8] Here, you may have a body that is ugly and defiled and has many defects.
There, your countenance is dignified and your body shines with light.

[9] Here, you revolve in the cycle of birth and death.
There, you experience birthlessness.

[10] Here, there are outcrops and depressions, brambles and thorns, and the landscape is filled with filth and evil.
There, the ground is made of gold; jewel trees reach to the sky; towers of precious stones rise up above you, and flowers of all colors are spread at your feet.

[11] Here, Shakyamuni Buddha has already passed [into parinirvana] and Maitreya Buddha has not yet come.
There, Amitabha Buddha is preaching the Dharma at this moment.

[12] Here, you look up in vain to the glory of Guanyin (Avalokiteshvara) and Dashizhi (Mahasthamaprapta) Bodhisattva.
There, you are on intimate terms with these two bodhisattvas, and they are your special friends.

[13] Here, a myriad of demons and heretics attempt to confuse correct cultivation.
There, the Buddha’s teaching unifies everything, and there is no trace of demons or heretics.

[14] Here, lust misleads practitioners.
There, your body is pure and clean, and there is no sexual desire.

[15] Here, evil beasts and monsters beat their wings with an evil sound.
There, the water birds and the forest trees all communicate the wondrous Dharma.

Comparing the two worlds, the landscape is as different as it can be. The Pure Land is superior in countless ways: one couldn’t find enough time to mention them all. Therefore all the scriptures of the complete meaning of the Great Vehicle (Mahayana) point the way to the Pure Land. The worthy sages of the past and present make vows that they themselves and others will be born in the Pure Land. Whoever wants to save people, should first recite the Buddha-name himself or herself. Unfortunately, people do not think in long terms: they only worry about things close at hand. Once the human body is lost, it is hard to regain it even in ten thousand eons. Thus it is urgent that all sentient beings should recite ‘Amitabha Buddha’ (Amituofo) as many times as possible every day, and transfer the merits to those who share the affinity for the Pure Land, and vow to be born there.

Related Article:
The Differences Between Heaven(s) & Pure Land(s)
(Please read this if you mistaken Pure Land to be an ordinary heaven)


  • Comment: Please explain when someone is in “spiritual side” means? This Buddhist religious person is in the Pure Land of Ultimate Bliss or in Heaven after death?

    Reply: What is the complete sentence, where you found the words ‘spiritual side’? Pure Land transcends in spirituality, beyond all worldly heavens, some of which lack spirituality:

    Comment: Can family members be together in same place & recognized each other.

    Reply: Definitely, if the meeting place is Pure Land.

    Comment: Can someone from heaven united with their love ones in Pure Land of Ultimate Bliss?

    Reply: Only if the one in that particular heaven practise the Pure Land teachings to reach Pure Land.

    • Comment: Can’t the bodhisattva in PureLand go to the heavens to look for his past love ones?

      Reply: Yes, only if they are there. If they are not willing to practise accordingly, they can’t reach Pure Land.

      Comment: If gods go to Pureland can they teleport there?

      Reply: Yes.

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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