Question: Is it such, that Amituofo’s Pure Land will not enable us to give rise to the three poisons (of greed, hatred and delusion), and that we will naturally be good in body, speech and mind, to become better persons?
Answer: Yes, it will be as mentioned. Just as when we get engrossed in a good immersive film, that stirs up certain intended emotions accordingly, Pure Land is such that when immersed in its pure environment, that only expresses the Dharma for receiving through all the senses, we will only be inspired to avoid evil, do good and purify the mind – which in turn purifies speech and body.
Question: Is it such, that those of lower grades are of ‘less good’ character (e.g. less compassionate), compared to those of higher grades?
Answer: Those of lower grades of birth are not born to function with ‘more evil’, but simply had less of a head start, due to being less spiritually advanced before reaching Pure Land. Generally speaking, they are born with less compassion, wisdom and practice than those of higher grades. However, once born, they will also progress swiftly like the rest. Of course, those who already had much prior practice, are born earlier, and thus progress even swifter.
Pure Land’s environment and its teachers function like the great rain that falls on the whole earth equanimously to nourish all vegetation, to enable all plants big and small to draw in what is needed due to their current capacities to grow well. The rain here represents the Dharma offered, the vegetation represents all beings there, and the plants’ capacities represent various spiritual roots. With the ultimate spiritual nourishment, no matter what grade of birth one attains, there is no faster way for that being to progress towards Buddhahood.
An example is those of the lowest grade of birth, whom after being lotus born, will hear Guanshiyin and Dashizhi Bodhisattvas most skilfully teach the Dharma, the understanding of which eradicates their transgressions, to at once give rise to Bodhicitta – the most noble aspiration to guide oneself and all other beings towards Buddhahood. Such Bodhicitta is firm, stronger than that of most non-Pure Land beings. Thus are they able to progress towards Buddhahood swiftly, without being able to fall back to past wayward ways at all.
This Bodhicitta vow given rise is based upon fundamental goodness for one and all. It is compassion itself, as linked to wisdom and practice, that qualify one to be a Bodhisattva. Being enabled to give rise to such purely motivated and non-retrogressible Bodhicitta helps to close the gap between the lowest grade and the highest grade. Again, there is no swifter way, than the path of reaching Pure Land, for bridging the otherwise vast spiritual distance between us and the great Bodhisattvas, like Guanshiyin and Dashizhi Bodhisattvas, than being inspired by them in person.