Translations

How The Three Lowest Grades Have Bodhicitta Too 下三品如何也有菩提心

Written by Purelanders

九品之下三品,临终苦极,

[Of the] nine grades’ lowest of three grades, [when] approaching [the] end [of life with] suffering extreme,

一闻佛名,其归命投诚,冀佛垂慈救援之心,

once [they] hear [Amitābha] Buddha’s name: [Āmítuófó, with] their taking [of] refuge [for] life [and] submission, hoping [the] Buddha [to] approach [to] save [them with the] heart of loving-kindness,

其勇奋感激,比临刑望赦之心,深千万倍。

their brave exertion [and] gratitude, compared with [the] mind of [those] hoping [for] pardon [when] approaching execution, [is more] profound [by] thousands [of] tens [of] thousands [of] times.

虽未言及发菩提心,而其心念之切与诚,实具足菩提心矣。

Although yet [to] speak [of] and give rise [to the] Bodhi mind [i.e. Bodhicitta], yet their minds [with] mindfulness, of sincerity and earnestness, [is] truly complete [with the] Bodhi mind.

净土宗十三祖印光大师
Pure Land Tradition’s 13th Patriarch Great Master Yìnguāng
(印光大师复王子立居士书三)
(Third Reply Letter To Layperson Wáng Zǐlì)

Namo Amituofo : Translation by Shen Shi’an

注:因为净土宗十三印光大师称净土法门为‘特别法门’,下三品所发的菩提心可称为‘特别菩提心’,与通途菩提心有分别。依据《观经》,他们得生净土后,将发(通途)菩提心。依据净土宗九祖蕅益大师的《佛说阿弥陀经要解》,‘深信发愿,即无上菩提’。所以,‘心念之切与诚’即‘深信发愿’之心。

Note: As the Pure Land Dharma Door is named the ‘Special Dharma Door’ (特别法门) by the Pure Land Tradition’s 13th Patriarch Great Master Yìnguāng, the Bodhicitta of those of the three lowest grades can be called ‘Special Bodhicitta’ (特别菩提心), in contrast to Common Bodhicitta (通途菩提心). Upon birth in Pure Land, (Common) Bodhicitta will be given rise to, as stated in the Contemplation Sūtra《观经》. According to the Pure Land Tradition’s 9th Patriarch Great Master Ǒuyì’s ‘Essential Explanation [Of The] Sūtra [In Which The] Buddha Speaks [Of] Amitā[bha Buddha]’《佛说阿弥陀经要解》, ‘[With] profound Faith giving rise [to the] Aspiration [to be born in Āmítuófó’s Pure Land, this] is unsurpassable Bodhi[citta].’ As such, ‘Minds [with] mindfulness, of sincerity and earnestness’ (心念之切与诚) are ‘[with] profound Faith giving rise [to the] Aspiration [to be born in Āmítuófó’s Pure Land] (深信发愿).’

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