[04] Fourth Chapter On Ānanda’s Teaching Request (Of Immeasurable Life Sūtra)《无量寿经》阿难启请第四

Distinct Preface: Preface [On] Origin

[04] Fourth [Chapter On] Ānanda’s Teaching Request


At that time, all [of the] World-Honoured [One’s] were roots joyous, [with] countenance [and] form pure, [and] radiant complexion imposing.


Venerable Ānanda, [having] received [the] Buddha’s noble order, immediately from [his] seat arose, bared [his] right shoulder, long knelt [with] joined palms, and [to the] Buddha said, , ‘Today, all [of the] World-Honoured [One’s] roots [are] joyous, [with] countenance [and] form pure, [and] radiant complexion imposing. Like [a] bright mirror pure, reflecting clearly outwards [and] inwards. [Your] majestic countenance [is] prominent [and] glorious, surpassing [and] immeasurable. Never ever respectfully seen [is a] special wonder like [this] now. It is so, Great Sage.


[In] my mind, I said, “Today, [the] World-Honoured [One] abides [in the] Dharma that [is] extraordinary [and] special. Today, [the] World’s Hero abides [in] that all Buddhas abide. Today, [the] World’s Eye abides [in the] practice of guiding teachers. Today, [the] World’s Outstanding [One] abides [on the] most excellent of paths. Today, [the] Heavens’ Honoured [One] practises [the] virtues of Thus Come [Ones. As] past, future [and] present Buddhas [are] mindful [of] one another, is it not [that] now, [the] Buddha [is] mindful [of] all Buddhas? [For] what reason [is his] majestic supernormal light shining like this?”’


Thereupon, [the] World-Honoured [One] told Ānanda, ‘Why, Ānanda, [did] all heavenly [beings] instruct you [to] come [to] ask [the] Buddha, [or did] you personally with wisdom’s view ask [about my] majestic countenance?’


Ānanda said [to the] Buddha, ‘[I did] not have all those heavenly [beings] come [to] instruct me, [as I] personally with that seen, asked [about what] this means only.’


[The] Buddha said, ‘Excellent, Ānanda, that asking [was] extremely fast. Arising [from] profound wisdom, [and] truly wonderful eloquence, [with] empathy mindful [of] sentient beings, asking [about] this wisdom’s meaning.


[The] Thus Come [Ones], with inexhaustible great compassion, [and] empathy [for the] three realms, therefore arise in worlds, [to] promote [and] explain [the] path’s teachings. Desiring [to] save [and] aid sentient beings, [to] confer [them] with true benefits. [In] immeasurable koṭis [of] kalpas, [they are] difficult [to] encounter [and] difficult [to] see. Similar [to the] spiritually auspicious flower, when [in] season then blossoms. Now, that asked [about, is for] many [of] those [to be] benefitted, [to] inspire [and] transform all heavenly [and] human people.


Ānanda, [you] should know, [that of the] Thus Come [Ones’] Right Awakening, its wisdom [is] difficult [to] measure, [for] many [of] those [to be] guided [and] tamed. [With] wisdom’s view unobstructed, [that is] not able [to be] stopped [and] exhausted. With [the] power of one meal, able [to] abide [with a] lifespan [of a] koṭi [of] hundred thousand kalpas, innumerable [and] immeasurable, again surpassing of this, [with] all roots joyous, not with harm [and] impairment, [with] countenance [and] form without change, [and] radiant complexion without difference. Why [is] that so? [The] Thus Come [Ones’] concentration [and] wisdom, [are with] thorough understanding [and] fluent expression without limit. With all dharmas, yet attaining ease. Ānanda, attentively listen, [to that] now for you [to be] spoken.’


[In] reply said, ‘It is so, [that I] aspire [with] joyful desire [to] hear.’

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