[5] With Mindfulness Of Buddha Sever Deluded Thoughts 以念佛断妄念


[Part 5]: I see new learners [and those] later born [i.e. the younger], just holding [the] one line [of the] Buddha’s [name] immediately on [their] minds, [then with] idle thinking [and] deluded thoughts, [being] more aware [of them] surging [and] rising, then calling [their] mindfulness [of] Buddha’s skill [to] not [be] able [to] gather [their] minds.

[Note 1: Deluded thoughts are also called false thoughts or stray thoughts. Beginner practitioners should not expect instant results of being totally free from them, when they should learn and practise further.]


Not knowing you, [for] immeasurable kalpas since, [with the] root cause [of the cycle of] birth [and] death, how [is it] able [to] immediately [be] severed?

[Note 2: The root of rebirth is delusion, manifesting as deluded thoughts that express attachment (i.e. greed) and aversion (i.e. hatred). Attachment, aversion and delusion are the Three Poisons, the interconnected causes of suffering and rebirth. With adequate practice of mindfulness of Buddha with the Three Provisions (of Faith, Aspiration and Practice), to let them sufficiently suspend the workings of the Three Poisons, by the end of this life reaching Pure Land, rebirth will then be immediately transcended.]


Moreover, [with] ten thousand thoughts, during that time, swirling in the ‘air’, [this is] precisely is [the] time [to] practise.

[Note 3: Exactly since there are many deluded thoughts noticed then, it is when there should be practice to gather the mind.]


Returning [to be] collected [and] returning [to be] scattered, returning [to be] scattered [and] returning [to be] collected, long after, [with] skill purified [and] matured, naturally [will] deluded thoughts not arise.

[Note 4: It is natural to have the mind cyclically alternating between being focused and being scattered, with this lessening with more practice, to be more and more focused]


Moreover, you [being] able [to be] aware of those deluded thoughts [being] heavy, [is] fortunately [due to] this line [of the] Buddha[‘s name].

[Note 5: Without practice of mindfulness of Buddha, there would be no awareness of the many deluded thoughts, letting them run on indefinitely all the time.]


If when not mindful [of] Buddha, [with deluded thoughts] overflowing [and] turning over [like the] tide rising, [even for a] moment not stopping, how [is] oneself able [to be] aware [of this]?

[Note 6: Being aware of deluded thoughts arising when practising mindfulness of Buddha is thus already improvement, and part of the process of practice for progress.]

Pure Land Tradition’s 8th Patriarch Great Master Liánchí
(Collection [Of] Yúnqī’s Pure Land Sayings: Eight Articles [As] Warnings [For The] Masses)

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

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[4] Have Profound Faith That Life Is Between Exhaling And Inhaling, For Diligent Mindfulness Of Buddha

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[6] Three Methods Of Upholding Mindfulness Of Buddha’s Name

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Great Master Liánchí’s Eight Articles Of Warnings For The Masses

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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