The Three Provisions needed for connection to Amituofo are Faith, Aspiration and Practice. In the Practice of mindfulness of Amituofo, it should be done with as much Faith and Aspiration as we can muster in the moment, while we work to increase them via more proper study of the Pure Land teachings. Utmost sincerity is crucial for nurturing the Three Provisions. The importance of this cannot be overstated, as it is precisely due to lack of sincerity, that the Three Provisions are in lack, which is why we are still in Samsara, instead of Pure Land.
With wholeheartedness (contrasting half-heartedness), which is sincerity in the Practice of mindfulness of Amituofo, single-mindedness (single-pointedness for meditative concentration) will naturally arise, as sincerity, which expresses deep Faith and Aspiration connects us to Amituofo’s blessings, which uplifts our minds to Samadhi from Mindfulness of (Amituofo) Buddha, bringing calmness, clarity and bliss. This is the connection of our Self-power with the Other-power of Amituofo – made possible only by wholehearted sincere refuge in Amituofo.
With only single-mindedness as the goal for Practice, however, wholeheartedness might not arise, as deep Faith and Aspiration might be missing, thus missing sincerity as well, which makes it difficult to connect to Amituofo. Samadhi that arises might not be the actual Samadhi from Mindfulness of (Amituofo) Buddha yet, even if it brings some calmness, clarity and bliss – as the name of Amituofo was merely used as an arbitrary subject for focus without sincere refuge. This is just our Self-power, yet to connect sincerely to the Other-power of Amituofo. Even the greatest Self-power of non-Buddhas (us, ordinary beings) cannot reach Pure Land as there is no way to karmically deserve it without connecting to Amituofo’s merits. Sincerity is thus crucial.
The Three Provisions of Faith, Aspiration & Practice