Importance Of Dedicating All Practices For Reaching Pure Land 回向一切修行于往生净土的重要


[The Pure Land Tradition’s Second Patriarch Great] Master Shàndǎo [was] connected [to] Āmítuófó [i.e. Amitā(bha)  Buddha, as his] manifestation body, [thus] with great supernormal [powers, and] with great wisdom.

Note 1: Great Master Shàndǎo’s teachings as below should thus be heeded mindfully.


His great explanation [of the] Pure Land [teachings, was] yet never mysterious [or abstruse; difficult to understand], only [focusing] on that [which is] clear [and] sincere, plain, simple [and] plain, teaching people [to] cultivate practice [accordingly].

Note 2: His teachings are distinct and straightforward for direct practice.


As for that taught [on] ‘Focused [Cultivation’ and] ‘Mixed [Cultivation’ as] two cultivation [methods], their benefits [are] boundless.

Note 3: Both ‘Focused Cultivation’ and ‘Mixed Cultivation’ when practised separately and together have tremendous benefits.


‘Focused Cultivation’ is to, [with] body [or physical] karma focused [on] prostrating [to Āmítuófó] ([while] all circumambulation, and [at] all places [with the] body not [being] heedless; [negligent; careless; undisciplined; indulgent; indolent] are all [also so]), [with] speech [or verbal] karma focused [on] reciting [Āmítuófó’s name] ([while] all recitation [of] sutras [and] mantras, [that are] able [to be, with a] sincere mind dedicated [for rebirth in Pure Land], likewise can [be] named [as] ‘Focused Recitation’), [and the] mind [or mental] karma focused [on] mindfulness [of Āmítuófó, with such] thus then [dedicated for] rebirth [in the] Western [Pure Land of Āmítuófó, of] ten thousand [people who practise thus], not one [will be] left out [from reaching Pure Land].  

Note 4: ‘Focused Cultivation’ is to use body, speech and mind (to cultivate these three karmas) by prostrating to Āmítuófó, by reciting his name, and being mindful of his name. However, the three karmas can also be used to practise circumambulation, heedfulness, sutra-chanting, mantra-chanting etc., as long as they are all sincerely dedicated for reaching Pure Land. Thus practising, all will definitely reach Pure Land.


‘Mixed Cultivation’ is to concurrently cultivate all kinds [of] Dharma doors, dedicating [to be] reborn [in Pure Land].  

Note 5: ‘Mixed Cultivation’ is to also have various other practices, that are also sincerely dedicated for reaching Pure Land.


With [the] mind not purely singular [or wholehearted in Aspiration for reaching Pure Land], therefore [will it be] difficult [to] attain benefits, then within [a] hundred, [the] rare [who] attain [birth there are] one [or] two, within [a] thousand, [the] rare [who] attain [birth there are] three [or] four. 

Note 6: Both ‘Focused Cultivation’ and ‘Mixed Cultivation’ should thus be dedicated sincerely for reaching Pure Land. If this is not done, it will be very difficult to reach Pure Land, as there is no clear direction of Aspiration. The following should also be noted:

[1] Having Only ‘Focused Cultivation’: ‘Focused Cultivation’ by itself, with sincere dedication, is already adequate for reaching Pure Land.

[2] Having Both ‘Focused Cultivation’ & ‘Mixed Cultivation’: As above, ‘”Mixed Cultivation”‘ is to also have various other practices, that are also sincerely dedicated for reaching Pure Land.’ Thus, ‘Mixed Cultivation’ can reach Pure Land too, if this is done. Also from above, ‘Both “Focused Cultivation” and “Mixed Cultivation” when practised separately and together have tremendous benefits.’

[3] Having Only ‘Mixed Cultivation’: The above does NOT say ‘Mixed Cultivation’ should not be done for reaching Pure Land. In fact, it encourages it. However, it warns that, ‘With [the] mind not purely singular [or wholehearted in Aspiration for reaching Pure Land], therefore [will it be] difficult [to] attain benefits.’ Thus, to be safe, if there is ‘Mixed Cultivation’, it should be to support existing ‘Focused Cultivation’, with the same sincere dedication for reaching Pure Land.


These [are Great Master Shàndǎo’s] golden mouth’s true [and] sincere words, [that for] all eternity [are] unchanging, [with] irrefutable ironclad proof.


[You] both should, with these [teachings] self-benefit, [and] also should with these [teachings] universally benefit all [others].

Note 7: The above should thus be understood clearly, to avoid misunderstanding, so as to guide proper practice, for teaching accordingly to benefit all.


Pure Land Tradition’s 13th Patriarch Great Master Yìnguāng
(Reply letter [to a] certain Yǒngjiā layperson [and his] brother)

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

Related Articles:

Why Are There Focused & Complete Cultivation Methods?

Verses On Focused And Complete Cultivation

Is Great Master Shàndǎo The Only Pure Land Patriarch?

What Are Main & Mixed Practices?

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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