Praises Of Āmítuófó In The Sūtra Of Praises Of All Buddhas’ Meritorious Virtues《称扬诸佛功德经》之阿弥陀佛赞

Excerpt [From The] Sūtra [In Which The] Buddha Speaks [Of] Praises [Of] All Buddhas’ Meritorious Virtues’s Lower Scroll:

Translated [in] Yuán Wèi [or Northern Wèi] Dynasty [by] India’s Tripiṭaka [Dharma Master] Kinkara

【释迦牟尼佛:】复次,舍利弗,西方去此,度十万亿佛刹,有世界名曰安乐。其国有佛号阿弥陀如来、至真、 等正觉、明行成为 、善逝、世间解、无上士、道法御、天人师,号曰众祐,度人无量。

[Śākyamuni Buddha:] Once again, Śāriputra, [in the] western direction from here, passing a hundred thousand koṭis of Buddha Lands, is [a] world named Peace [And] Bliss. That land has [a] Buddha named Amitā[bha/yus] Thus Come [One], Utmost True [One], Equally [And] Rightly Awakened [One], Knowledge [And] Practice Accomplished [One], Well Gone [One], World-Knowing [One], Unsurpassed One, Tamer [With The] Path’s Dharma, Heavenly [And] Human [Beings’] Teacher, [whose] name [is the] Bhagavān [i.e. Āmítuófó, who] delivers humans immeasurably.


[1] 1 koṭi is about 10 million.
[2] The Land Of Peace And Bliss (安乐国) is also known as the Land Of Ultimate Bliss (极乐世界) and the Land Of Peaceful Nurturing (安养国).
[3] A Bhagavān is a ‘World-Honoured One’ or ‘Blessed One’ (who blesses all). Listed are the ten titles of every Buddha.


If [there] are those [who] attain hearing [of] Immeasurable Life [i.e. Amitāyus] Tathāgata’s name [i.e. Āmítuófó, who] wholeheartedly, [with] joyful Faith uphold mindful recitation [of it, they] will give rise [to] vast, far[-reaching and] immeasurable joy, [that] peacefully settles [within] their minds, enabling [them to have the] true essence [of] a hundred thousand koṭis’ [times more] Faith [when] mindful [of] this Tathāgata. These persons will attain immeasurable blessings, [and] will forever far depart [from] difficulties of [the] three paths [of hell-beings, hungry ghosts and animals]. After [the] end [of their] lives, [they] will all [be] reborn [in] that Buddha Land.


[4] Those who are sincerely mindful of Āmítuófó will receive great bliss and thus have much increase of Faith in Āmítuófó. Those weak in Faith should thus also practise mindfulness of Āmítuófó even more sincerely to increase their Faith. Practice of sincere mindfulness of Āmítuófó by itself is able to give rise to not only much blessed virtues (福德), but immeasurable blessings, for further nurturing our virtues.


When near the end of life, [with] wholehearted joyful Faith, mindful [and] not forgetting [or] giving up [mindfulness of] Amitā[bha] Buddha, [he] will, [with] many [in a] Saṅgha assembly, abide before these persons. Demons, [to the] end, [will] not be able [to] destroy their minds [aspiring for] Equally Perfect Enlightenment [via his Pure Land].


[5] For those with sincere mindfulness of him with deep Faith and Aspiration to reach his Pure Land, Āmítuófó will, with a noble assembly, arrive to receive and guide them to reach his Pure Land most swiftly and safely, protecting them from all demonic beings or karmic creditors, who might be there to distract them from their path to Pure Land. Thus, those fearful of dying and karmic creditors should all the more practise sincere mindfulness of Āmítuófó now, so as to dissolve such fears immediately. With sincere mindfulness of Āmítuófó, there will be no cause for fear at all. If there is still fear, it would only be due to lack of Faith, thus lacking sincerity when mindful of Āmítuófó. More of the Pure Land teachings should be learnt and practised, so as to transform unfounded doubts to be unshakable profound Faith.


Why is this so? That Buddha, World-Honoured One [has] established great compassion, [with] vows [to] deliver all immeasurable sentient beings, also [to] repeatedly protect [and] uphold all sentient beings [of the] ten directions’ worlds. They [who] have attained birth [in the] Land [Of] Peace [And] Bliss, will thus within there, [be] completely filled [with the] Tathāgata’s Perfect Enlightenment’s wisdom.


[6] Āmítuófó had vowed to always protect and guide all beings to Buddhahood with immeasurable skilful means, including via his Pure Land.


Śāriputra, [as] that Buddha, World-Honoured One’s originally sought vows [to fulfil, is that his Pure Land is for] those [who] seek [the] first of vehicles [i.e. the Great Vehicle (Mahāyāna)], in that land, [it is] completely filled [with] all Tathāgata Buddhas’ Dharma [teachings], complete [with] Perfect Enlightenment’s factors. [Those who] seek [the] Śrāvaka [i.e. Voice-Hearer] vehicle, in that Buddha’s Land, [will] attain [as] Arhats. Those [who] have [been] reborn [in] that Buddha Land, following their aspirations [for the] Great [and] Small Vehicle, in that [land, they will be] completely fulfilled.


[7] Although Āmítuófó’s Pure Land is ultimately for accomplishing Buddhahood, those who have reached it will be able to accomplish as Śrāvakas (Arhats) first if they aspire so, before certainly progressing without retrogression, to be Bodhisattvas most swiftly bound for Buddhahood.


Those [who] have final hearing [of] Amitā[bha] Tathāgata’s name [i.e. Āmítuófó, who] praise [and] speak [of it, with] Faith [and] without doubt, will give rise [to] reverent hearts [and] sincere minds [to be] mindful of [his name], like mindfulness of [their] Fathers [and] Mothers. Giving rise [to] such minds, they [and] others [who do so] will universally, in that Buddha Land, completely fulfil all [their] aspirations.


[8] Even those who are faithfully mindful of Āmítuófó’s name only at the end of their lives, with the sincere Aspiration to reach his Pure Land, can do so. As having reached Āmítuófó’s Pure Land ensures all aspirations will be completely fulfilled, all should sincerely nurture the Three Provisions of Faith, Aspiration and Practice for reaching it.


They with no Faith [in these] praises [of] Amitā[bha] Buddha’s name’s meritorious virtues and slander, [for] five kalpas within, will fall into [the] hells [to] completely receive all [kinds of] suffering.


[9] 1 kalpa is about 1.3 trillion years.
[10] While lacking Faith and diligence in cultivating Faith through learning and Practice is a great pity, as the above blessings will not be received, much more pitiable are those who slander the above teachings. They will not only not receive such blessings, but suffer greatly, for conditioning others to forgo the swiftest and surest path to Buddhahood. Thus, these teachings should be sincerely learnt, practised and shared, for the ultimate welfare of all beings.

Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

1 Comment

  • Homage to the Buddha of boundless light, whose each major and minor marks emit 84000 rays of brilliant golden light, each beam which universally shines in 10 directions embracing all beings including the most evil ones with true equality, never abandoning them!

    Those who chant the Buddha’s holy name, will invariably be born in his pureland without any exception.

    I truly have no other thing that I can offer the Holy Buddha, I offered this single verse with a sincere and faithful mind.

    By the merit of this verse offering, may all kinds of obstruction be totally eliminated and at the end of this life, may the greatly compassionate one come to receive me with his holy assembly of Bodhisattvas!

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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