Translations

What Is Utmost Sincere Mind Of The Three Minds? 何为三心之至诚心?

【经】:佛告阿难,及韦提希:… 若有众生愿生彼国者,发三种心,即便往生。何等为三?

[1] 一者,至诚心,
[2] 二者,深心,
[3] 三者,回向发愿心。

具三心者,必生彼国。」

[Sūtra]: [Śākyamuni] Buddha told Ānanda, and Vaidehī, ‘… [I]f [there] are sentient beings who aspire [to be] born [in] that [Pure] Land [of Āmítuófó, who] give rise [to] three kinds [of] minds, [they] immediately then, [will be] reborn [there]. What [are] as [the] three?

[1] First, [is the] utmost sincere mind,
[2] second, [is the] profound[ly faithful] mind,
[3] third, [is the] mind [of] dedication [of meritorious virtues with] giving rise [of the] Aspiration [to be born there].

Those complete [with these] Three Minds, [will] definitely [be] born [in] that land.’

【疏】:经云:「一者,至诚心。」

[Commentary]: [The] sūtra says, ‘First, is [the] utmost sincere mind.’

「至」者真。「诚」者实。

That ‘utmost’ [is] true. That ‘sincere’ [is] real.

欲明一切众生身口意业所修解行,必须真实心中作。

Wishing [to] understand all sentient beings’ karma [of] body, speech [and] mind, that [is for] cultivating understanding [and] practice, [they] must [be with the] true mind within done.

不得外现贤善精进之相,内怀虚假。

[There] must not [be] externally appearing [to have the] form of [being] wise, capable, good-hearted [and] diligent, [yet] internally harbouring falseness. [Note: 贤善: 贤明善良: wise, capable, good-hearted]

贪嗔邪伪,奸诈百端,恶性难侵,事同蛇蝎。

[As] greed, hatred [and] evil [views’] falseness [are] devious, [with] hundreds [of] extreme [ends, their] evil nature [is] difficult [to] approach [and capture, with this] matter similar [to capturing of] snakes [and] scorpions.

虽起三业,名为杂毒之善,亦名虚假之行,不名真实业也。

Although giving rise [to the] three karmas [of body, speech and mind this way, they are] named as good of mixed poisons [of greed, hatred and evil views], likewise named [as] practices of falseness, not named [as spiritually] true karma.

若作如此安心起行者,纵使苦励身心,日夜十二时,急走急作,如救头燃者,总名杂毒之善。

If those doing so, settling [their] minds [to] give rise [to] practices, even if painstakingly striving [with] body [and] mind, [in] days’ [and] nights’ twelve periods hurriedly walking [about and] hurriedly doing [them], like those saving [their] heads [from being] burnt, [these are] altogether named [as] good of mixed poisons.

欲回此杂毒之行,求生彼佛净土者,此必不可也。

[For] those wishing [to] dedicate these practices of mixed poisons [to] seek birth [in] that Buddha’s Pure Land, this definitely [is] not possible [to be successful].

何以故?正由彼阿弥陀佛,因中行菩萨行时,乃至一念一刹那,三业所修,乃是真实心中作。凡所施为趣求,亦皆真实。

Why [is this] so? Precisely because, that Āmítuófó’s cause, when within practice [of the] Bodhisattva path, even with one thought [and] one kṣaṇa [i.e. instant], [his] three karmas that [were] cultivated, were [with the] true mind within done. All that [was] given for [the] purpose [of accomplishing Buddhahhood and Pure Land] sought, likewise [were] all true.

又真实有二种。一者自利真实。二者利他真实。

Also, [what is] true has two kinds. First, [is] self-benefitting [that is] true. Second, [is] benefitting others [that is] true.

言自利真实者,复有二种。

Speaking [of] those [with] self-benefitting [that is] true, again [there] are two kinds.

一者真实心中,制舍自他诸恶及秽国等。

Those [of the] first [kind, with the] true mind within create renunciation [of] self [and] others’ all [kinds of] evil, defiled lands [and] others.

行住坐卧,想彼一切菩萨,制舍诸恶,我亦如是也。

[When] moving, standing, sitting [and] lying down, thinking [of being like] all those Bodhisattvas, creating renunciation [of] all evils, I likewise [do] thus.

二者真实心中,勤修自他凡圣等善。

Those [of the] second [kind, with the] true mind within, diligently cultivate, [of] self [and] others’, ordinary, noble [beings’ and] other [kinds of] good.

真实心中,口业赞叹彼阿弥陀佛及依正二报。

[With the] true mind within’s speech karma, praising that Āmítuófó and [his] two conditional [and] direct rewards [in his Pure Land].

又真实心中,口业毁厌三界六道等自他依正二报苦恶之事,亦赞叹一切众生三业所为善。

Also, [with the] true mind within’s speech karma, [speak on] ruinous revulsion [of the] three realms’ six paths, [and] self [and] others’ two conditional [and] direct retributions’ matters of suffering [and] evil, likewise praising all sentient beings’ three karmas that [were] done as good.

若非善业者,敬而远之,亦不随喜也。

If [there are] those [with] non-good karma, [have] respect, yet [at a] distance, likewise not accordingly rejoicing.

又真实心中,身业合掌礼敬四事等供养彼阿弥陀佛及依正二报。

Also, [with the] true mind within, [the] body karma, [with] joined palms reverencing, [with the] four [necessary] items [and] others making offerings [to] that Āmítuófó and [his] two conditional [and] direct rewards.

又真实心中,身业轻慢厌舍此生死三界等自他依正二报。

Also, [with the] true mind within, [the] body karma, slighting, [and with] revulsion renouncing these three realms’ [cycle of] births [and] deaths, [with] self [and] others’ two conditional [and] direct retributions.

又真实心中,意业思想、观察、忆念彼阿弥陀佛及依正二报,如现目前。

Also, [with the] true mind within, [the] mind karma, thinking, examining [and] recollecting that Āmítuófó and [his] two conditional [and] direct rewards, [to be] as if appearing before [the] eyes.

又真实心中,意业轻贱厌舍此生死三界等自他依正二报。

Also, [with the] true mind within, [the] mind karma, looking down [upon, and with] revulsion renouncing these three realms’ [cycle of] births [and] deaths, [with] self [and] others’ two conditional [and] direct retributions.

不善三业必须真实心中舍。

[The] three non-good karmas [of body, speech and mind] must [with the] true mind within [be] renounced.

又若起善三业者,必须真实心中作,不简内外明闇,皆须真实,故名至诚心。

Again, those if giving rise [to] good’s three karmas [of body, speech and mind], must [with the] true mind within do [so], not simply [with the] internal [and] external bright [and] dark [respectively], all needing [to be] true, thus named [is the] utmost sincere mind.

净土宗二祖善导大师
《观经四帖疏》散善义

Pure Land Tradition’s 2nd Patriarch Great Master Shàndǎo
(Commentary [On The] Contemplation Sūtra [In] Four Fascicles: Scattered Goodness’ Meaning)

Summary: The utmost sincere mind (至诚心) is the wholehearted true mind (真实心), with genuine wisdom (智慧), capability (能力), good-heartedness (善良) and diligence (精进), not with the three poisons (三毒) mixed (杂毒) with greed (贪), hatred (瞋) and delusion (痴; 邪见).

The true mind can benefit self (自利) [and others (利他)] with renunciation (舍) of all evil, and with cultivation (修) of all good. Of Āmítuófó and his two conditional and direct rewards (依正二报), with speech karma praise (口业赞叹), with body karma reverence (身业礼敬) and make offerings (供养), having revulsed renunciation (厌舍) of the three realms’ (三界) two retributions (依正二报). With mind karma reflect and recollect (意业忆念) upon Āmítuófó and his two rewards, having revulsed renunciation of the three realms’ two retributions.

With the true mind renounce non-good karmas (不善业) of body, speech and mind (身口意), and give rise to good karmas (善业) of body, speech and mind. To do so is to have the utmost sincere mind.

[This is the mind to practise mindfulness of Āmítuófó’s name (念佛) with too, by reciting it with utmost sincerity and listening to it with utmost sincerity.]    

Namo Amituofo : Translation and summary by Shen Shi’an

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