Translations

Who Can Attain Birth In Pure Land? 谁能得生净土?

[以下是《往生论注》下卷最后七则问答的第一题,附加标题,为容易参考。
Below is the first of the last seven questions and answers in the Rebirth Treatise’s Commentary’s Lower Scroll, as titled for easier reference.]

[1] 谁能得生净土?
Who Can Attain Birth In Pure Land?

问曰:天亲菩萨回向章中,言「普共诸众生,往生安乐国」,此指共何等众生耶?

Question: [In] Vasubhandu Bodhisattva’s dedication section within, [he] says, ‘universally together, [with] all sentient beings, [to be] reborn [in his] Land [Of] Peace [And] Bliss’. This referred [to as] ‘together [with’ are] which sentient beings?

[Note 1: This refers to the last two lines of the last verse of the treatise:

我作论说偈,
愿见弥陀佛,
普共诸众生,
往生安乐国。

I, [having] composed [this] treatise [to] speak [these] verses,
vow [to] meet Amitā[bha] Buddha,
universally together, [with] all sentient beings,
[to be] reborn [in his] Land [Of] Peace [And] Bliss.]

答曰:案王舍城所说《无量寿经》:「佛告阿难:十方恒河沙诸佛如来,皆共称叹无量寿佛威神功德不可思议。诸有众生,闻其名号,信心欢喜,乃至一念,至心回向,愿生彼国,即得往生,住不退转。唯除五逆、诽谤正法。」

Answer: According to that [at] Rājagṛha City’s spoken Immeasurable Life Sūtra, ‘[The] Buddha told Ānanda, “[The] ten directions’ Ganges river’s sands’ all Buddha Thus Come [Ones], all together praise Immeasurable Life Buddha’s awe-inspiring meritorious virtues’ inconceivability. All sentient beings, [who] hear his name, [with the] faithful mind [and] joy, and even [with] one thought, [with the] sincere mind dedicating, aspiring [to be] born [in] that land, [will] immediately attain rebirth, [to] abide [in] non-retrogression. Only excluded [are those with the] Five Heinous [Transgressions, who] slander [the] right Dharma.”‘

[Note 2: Five Heinous Transgressions: (1) killing Father, (2) Mother, (3) Arhat, (4) causing Buddha’s body to bleed (5) creating schism in Saṃgha. (五逆罪: 杀父,杀母,杀阿罗汉,出佛身血,破和合僧) Right Dharma: The Buddha’s teachings, especially the Dharma Door of mindfulness of Buddha. (正法: 佛法,尤其念佛法门)]

案此而言,一切外凡夫人,皆得往生。

According to this then said, [of] all external ordinary persons, all [can] attain rebirth.

又如《观无量寿经》有九品往生:「下下品生者:或有众生,作不善业,五逆十恶,具诸不善。如此愚人,以恶业故,应堕恶道,经历多劫,受苦无穷。如此愚人,临命终时,遇善知识种种安慰,为说妙法,教令念佛。此人苦逼,不遑念佛。善友告言:汝若不能念者,应称无量寿佛。如是至心,令声不绝,具足十念,称南无无量寿佛。称佛名故,于念念中除八十亿劫生死之罪。命终之时,见金莲华,犹如日轮,住其人前。如一念顷,即得往生极乐世界。于莲华中,满十二大劫,莲华方开。观世音、大势至以大悲音声,为其广说诸法实相除灭罪法。闻已欢喜,应时即发菩提之心。是名下品下生者。」

Also, like [the] Sūtra [On] Contemplation [Of] Immeasurable Life [Buddha] has nine grades [of] rebirth, ‘[On] those [of the] Lower Low Grade: If [there] are sentient beings, [who] do non-good [i.e. evil] karma, [the] Five Heinous [Transgressions and the] Ten Evil [Karmas], complete [with] all [that is] not good, [of] these such foolish persons, with evil karma thus, should fall [into the] evil paths, passing through many kalpas, receiving suffering without end. These such foolish persons, when approaching life’s end, [if] meeting good-knowing friends, [who offer] all kinds [of] comforting [i.e. consolations], for [them] speaking [the] wonderful Dharma, teaching [to] enable [them to be] mindful [of Amitā(bha)] Buddha, these persons, [if by] suffering compelled, too flustered [and confused, to be] mindful [of] Buddha, [a] good friend speaks [these] words, “If you [are] not able [to be] mindful [of] Buddha, [you] should recite [the name of] Immeasurable Life Buddha [i.e. Amitāyus Buddha], thus [with a] sincere mind, enabling [its] sound [to] not [be] interrupted, completing ten thoughts, [of] reciting ‘Námó [i.e. Homage to and refuge for life in] Immeasurable Life Buddha’ [i.e. Āmítuófó.]” Reciting [the] Buddha’s name thus, in thought [to] thought within, eradicates 80 koṭis [of] kalpas of births’ [and] deaths’ transgressions. When life [is] ending, [they will] see [a] golden lotus flower, just like [the] sun disc, abiding before these persons. As [if in] one thought moment, [they] immediately attain rebirth [in the] Land [Of] Ultimate Bliss. In [the] lotus flowers within, completing 12 great kalpas [i.e. 12 days in Sahā World’s time], [the] lotus flower then blossoms. Contemplator [Of The] World’s Sounds [i.e. Guānshìyīn] Bodhisattva [and] Great Power Arrived [i.e. Dàshìzhì] Bodhisattva, with great compassionate voices, [will] for them widely speak [of] all dharmas’ [i.e. phenomena] true nature, eradicating [their] transgressions [of the] Dharma. Hearing [this] already, [with] joy, [they] immediately give rise [to the] mind of Bodhi [i.e. Bodhicitta]. [These] are named [as] those [of the] Low Grade’s Low Birth.’

[Note 3: Ten Evil Karmas (Ten Unwholesome Deeds): (1) killing, (2) stealing, (3) sexual misconduct, (4) false speech, (5) double-tongued speech, (6) harsh speech, (7) useless speech, (8) covetousness (greed; attachment), (9) hatred (aversion) (10) false views (delusion; ignorance).]

以此经证,明知下品凡夫,但令不诽谤正法,信佛因缘,皆得往生。

With this sūtra’s confirmation, [it can be] clearly known [that of] lower grade’s ordinary beings, only [with the] cause [of] not slandering [the] right Dharma, [with] Faith [in the] Buddha’s cause [and] conditions, all [can] attain rebirth.

《无量寿经优婆提舍愿生偈注 卷上》
(Immeasurable Life Sūtra’s Upadeśa’s Verses [On] Aspiration [For] Birth: Upper Scroll)

婆薮槃头菩萨 造
Written [by] Vasubandhu Bodhisattva
菩提流支 译
Translation [by] Bodhiruci
昙鸾大师 注
Commentary [by] Great Master Tánluán

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

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