The Ten Faiths 十信


[1] First, [is] Faith [that with] birth, [there] definitely [will] be death.     
(Universally, of [all] under [the] heavens, from ancient [times] until today, [never] before [is there] one human [who] attained escape.)


[2] Second, [is] Faith [that] human life [is] impermanent. 
([The] exhaling breath although exists, [the] inhaling breath [is] difficult [to] guarantee. [When] one breath [does] not come, [it] immediately becomes [the] next life.)


[3] Third, [is] Faith [that] rebirth’s path [is] dangerous.
([With the] difference of one thought, then falling [into] evil realms. [Those who] attain [the] human body [are few], like dirt in [the] nails. [Those who] lose [the] human body [are many], like [the] great earth’s dirt.)


[4] Fourth, [is] Faith [that] suffering realms’ durations [are] long.
([In the] three paths once [with] retribution, [is] five thousand kalpas. Emerging again [to attain the human body], when [will it] be?)


[5] Fifth, [is] Faith [that the] Buddhas’ words [are] not false.      
(These sun [and] moon can [be] enabled [to] fall, [and the] Wonderful High Mountain King [i.e. Mount Sumeru] can [be] caused [to] collapse [and] shake, [but] all that [the] Buddhas [have] said [will] not have differences.)


[6] Sixth, [is] Faith [that there] truly is Pure Land. 
(Like [the] present Sahā [World Of Endurance of suffering] without difference, [it] certainly does exist.)


[7] Seventh, [is] Faith [that with] Aspiration [to be] born [there] immediately [is] birth.
([Those who] already [aspired], presently [and in the] future aspire, [are] already [born there], presently [and in the] future born [there. [As the Amitābha] Sūtra has clear words [on this], how [can it] deceive me?)


[8] Eighth, [is] Faith [that with] birth [there] immediately [is] non-retrogression.
([With its] realm supreme [and] conditions powerful, [the] mind [of] retrogression [can]not arise.)


[9] Ninth, [is] Faith [that in] one lifetime [is] accomplishment [of] Buddhahood.
([With] lifespan immeasurable, what matter [can]not [be] accomplished?)


[10] Tenth, [is] Faith [that] dharmas [are] fundamentally mind-only. 
(‘Mind-only’ has [the] two meanings [of] completion [本具足] [and] creation [造作]. Like all dharmas above, all [are in] my mind complete, [and] all [are by] my mind created.)


[With] Faith [in the] Buddhas’ words thus, then creates [the] later four [Faiths].


Not [with] Faith [in the] Buddhas’ words, only creates [the] earlier four [Faiths].


Thus [with] profound Faith [in the] Buddhas’ words, immediately [is with] profound Faith [in] oneself’s mind’s [Buddha-nature].

修净业者,能具此十种信心,其乐土之生, 如操左卷而取故物,夫何难之有?

[For] those [who] cultivate pure karma, [who are] able [to be] complete [with]] these ten kinds [of] Faiths, of [their] births [in] that Land [Of Ultimate] Bliss, like holding [the] left scroll to obtain [a] former item, of what difficulty is [there]?

[Note: In ancient China, there are agreements that when a left scroll can be aligned (or matched) with a right one held by another party, this guarantees that an item withheld by the latter will be returned to the first. Thus, ‘like holding the left scroll to obtain a former item’ is an analogy of holding on to Niànfó (Practice of mindfulness of the name of Amitābha Buddha – ‘Āmítuófó’) being what guarantees great confidence and ease of attaining birth in his Pure Land for swift progress towards Buddhahood.]

Pure Land Tradition’s 12th Patriarch Great Master Chèwù
Chán Master Chèwù’s Collected Works : Lower Scroll

Namo Amituofo : Translation and note by Shen Shi’an

Related Articles:

Ten Comparisons of the Suffering of Samsara Vs the Bliss of Pure Land

A Teaching Very Difficult to Believe In?

A Single Breath

Why Pure Lands Must Exist

If horrible hells can be created
by an unenlightened being without wisdom or merits,
blissful Pure Lands can be created
by enlightened beings with infinite wisdom and merits.

Samsara is sustained
by selfishness and delusion.
Pure Lands are sustained
by compassion and wisdom.

– Stonepeace

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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