How Is Āmítuófó Able To Receive And Guide Immeasurable Beings At Once? 阿弥陀佛如何一时接引无量众生?


[A] doubt says: Amitā[bha] Buddha peacefully abides [in his Land Of] Ultimate Bliss. [The] ten directions worlds [are] immeasurable [and] boundless. [In] one world within, [its] sentient beings mindful [of the] Buddha, [are] likewise immeasurable [and] boundless.


[Of] Amitā[bha] Buddha, how [is he] able [to], with one body, [in] one moment universally pervade [to] receive [and] guide [the] ten directions’ immeasurable [and] boundless worlds’ all sentient beings mindful [of the] Buddha?


Answer: How can you, with ordinary beings’ knowing [and] seeing, speculate [about the] Buddha’s realm?


Provisionally, [this explanation is] with [an] analogy, [using it for] clarity, [to] enable your confusion [to be] eliminated.


[With] one moon suspended [on the] sky, [in] ten thousand rivers, [with its] reflections appearing, how [can the] moon take [this] to heart? That sky only [has] one moon, yet [the] great ocean [and] great rivers, large rivers [and] small streams, all appear [with the] complete moon.


Even if small, and [even in] one spoon’s one drop [of] water within, [it is] not without each appearing [with the] complete moon.


Moreover, of [the] moon [on the] rivers, [when] one person sees it, then is [there] one moon corresponding to that person. [If there are a] thousand million koṭis [of] persons, at [a] thousand million koṭis [of] places seeing it, then [is it] not without each having one moon corresponding to those persons.


If [a] thousand million koṭis [of] persons, each towards [the] East, West, South [and] North then walk, then [will the] moon likewise of those places walked [towards], constantly correspond to those persons. Of [the] forms’ places gone, [it is] completely without far [and] near.


If [a] thousand million koṭis [of] persons, peacefully abide [and] not move, then [will the] moon likewise peacefully abide [and] not move, constantly corresponding to those persons.


Only [when the] water [is] clear and quiet, [it] then appears, [with the] water defiled and moving then hidden. [The] moon originally without accepting [and] rejecting, its not appearing, [is] due [to the] water [being] obscured, defiled [and] surging forth, [with] no way [to] receive its reflection’s appearance.


[The] minds of sentient beings [are] like [the] water, [and] Amitā[bha] Buddha [is] like [the] moon. [When] sentient beings’ Faith [and] Aspiration [are] complete, [their] utmost sincerity [will] connect [to the] Buddha. Then [with the] Buddha responding [to] them, [is] like [the] water [being] clear, [with the] moon appearing.


If [their] minds [are] not pure, not [with] utmost sincerity, with greed, hatred [and] ignorance corresponding, [this is] with [the] Buddha, [with their] backs [to] each other. Like [the] water defiled and moving, [the] moon although not leaving behind [all], shining [and] approaching, [it is] yet not able [to] reveal [its] reflections’ appearances.


[The] moon [is] only [a] worldly form’s phenomenon, [yet] still has such wonders, moreover Amitā[bha] Buddha, [whose] afflictions [and] confusions [have] completely ended, [with] blessings [and] wisdom complete, [with his] mind [that] embraces vast emptiness, that [has its] measure [pervade] everywhere [in the] Dharma realm?


Thus, [the] Flower Adornment Sūtra says, ‘[The] Buddhas’ bodies fully fill [the] Dharma realm, universally appearing before all sentient beings. According [with their] conditions attending [and] connecting, [with] nowhere not [pervaded] everywhere, yet constantly dwelling [on] this Bodhi seat.’ Thus know [that sentient beings] everywhere [in the] Dharma realm connecting, [is with the Buddha] everywhere [in the] Dharma realm responding.


[The] Buddha truly has not given rise [to his] mind [to] move [a] thought, [to] have forms [with] coming [and] going, yet able [to] enable sentient beings [with] matured conditions, [to] see him come [to] these [persons to] receive [and] guide [them], for rebirth [in his] West[ern Pure Land].


[As] those [having] this doubt, certainly [are] not one [or] two, therefore teaching [the] main ideas [above, to] enable giving rise [to] right Faith.

Pure Land Tradition’s 13th Patriarch Great Master Yìnguāng
(‘Beginners’ Pure Karma’s Guide’s Preface)

Namo Amituofo : Translation by Shen Shi’an

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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