Q&A

What Did The Buddha Teach About Here & Now Being Pure Land? 佛陀对现在即为净土的概念有什么教法?

Question: What did the Buddha teach about the idea of Pure Land being in the here and now?

Answer: The answer can be seen below (parts in blue).

《楞严经》五十阴魔章:第四想阴魔:贪求辨析
Śūraṅgama Sūtra’s Chapter On Fifty Aggregates’ Demon[ic States]: Fourth Perception Aggregate’s Demonic State: Greedy Seeking [To] Differentiate [And] Analyse

【释迦牟尼佛】:「又善男子,受阴虚妙,不遭邪虑,圆定发明。三摩地中,心爱根本,穷览物化性之终始,精爽其心,贪求辨析。

[Śākyamuni Buddha]: ‘Moreover, [when a] good man [or woman, with] feeling’s aggregate’s false wonders, not encountering evil thoughts, [in] perfect concentration, [he will] radiate brightness. [In] samādhi within, [with his] mind’s attachment’s root, [he wants to] completely observe [the] ending [and] beginning of [the] nature [of] objects’ transformation, essentially [and] clearly, [with] his mind, greedily seeking [to] differentiate [and] analyse.

[Note 1: This is subtle but sure arising of greed, in wanting to clearly see the workings of the rising and falling of matter. Once there is any of the Three Poisons (三毒) of attachment (贪), aversion (嗔) and delusion (痴) at work, there will be obstacles that obstruct spiritual advancement towards perfect wisdom (慧), even if there was already great concentration (定).]

尔时天魔候得其便,飞精附人,口说经法。其人先不觉知魔著,亦言自得无上涅槃。来彼求元善男子处,敷座说法。身有威神,摧伏求者。令其座下,虽未闻法,自然心伏。

At that time, [a] heavenly demon waiting [to attain] this advantage, [as a] flying spirit possesses [a] person, [with the] mouth speaking [the] “sūtras’ Dharma”. This person first not aware [of being by a] demon possessed, also says [one]self [to have] attained unsurpassable “Nirvāṇa”. Coming [to] that seeking [of] origins’ good man’s place, installing [a] seat [to] speak [the] “Dharma”. [The] body has [an] imposing influence, [which] subdues that seeker. Enabling him, [at his or her] seat below, although yet [to] hear [the] “Dharma”, [to] naturally [have his] mind subdued.

[Note 2: The first person will be indirectly harmed by this second person, who is also with the Three Poisons, but more, thus easier possessed by a demonic disciple (魔子) of the Māra King (魔王). The possessed will attract with wrong ‘Dharma’ teachings portrayed enticingly, usually packaged with some right teachings to create a sense of authenticity, while claiming to have attained Buddhahood. This is common as the demonic are highly egoistic and will want to attract more, by claiming to have a very high spiritual status, while offering ‘exclusive’ and ‘special’ teachings.]

[Note 3: The possessed will seek out disciples, appearing confident and ‘magnificent’ to win their trust. As the unguarded can be won over ‘naturally’, it is important that the spiritually new and weak should stay away from dubious ‘teachers’, who might be the above.]

是诸人等,将佛涅槃菩提法身,即是现前我肉身上。父父子子,递代相生,即是法身常住不绝。都指现在即为佛国。无别净居及金色相。

These many people [and] others, will [say, “the] ‘Buddha’s Nirvāṇa’s Dharma Body’, is the same [as] my presently manifested flesh body within. [From] fathers [to] sons, passed [from] one generation [to] another born, [this] is the same [as the] ‘Dharma Body’ [that] constantly abides without end. [With] all pointing [to that] present [and] immediate as [a] ‘Buddha land’. Without other purified abodes and golden forms.”

[Note 4: Such an evil teacher (邪师) might wrongly teach their disciples that the actually boundless and formless Dharmakāya (Dharma Body: 法身) is the same as the bound form of this gross human body, and that being trapped in the cycle of rebirth can pass it down eternally. This is a severe misconception as it will further worldly attachment to our impermanent and impure bodies, thinking it is a ‘lasting’ and ‘perfect’ form. Such attachment also leads to continual rebirth, so as to retain this ‘wonderful’ form. Thus will there be no progress to liberation.]

[Note 5: There is also the serious misconception that the here and now is a Pure Land, with no actual Pure Lands and Buddhas elsewhere worthy for going to. If this Defiled Land (秽土) is already a perfect Pure Land, the Buddhas would not repeatedly urge the seeking of rebirth in Pure Lands beyond, such as Amitābha Buddha’s (Āmítuófó: 阿弥陀佛) Pure Land in the western direction, where his golden body can be seen and learnt from. We only need to look more closely at increasing man-made disasters, that manifest many natural disasters, to know that this world, which is full of sickness, suffering and death is nowhere near being a Pure Land.]

[Note 6: As we have already entered the Dharma-Ending Age (末法时期), being attached to this land while not seeking birth in a Pure Land will lead to rebirth back here, in an increasingly defiled land. The teaching in this section should not be confused with the concept of ‘When the mind is pure, then is the land is pure’ (心净则国土净), as further explained in the Related Article below.]

其人信受,亡失先心。身命归依,得未曾有。是等愚迷,惑为菩萨。推究其心,破佛律仪,潜行贪欲。口中好言眼耳鼻舌,皆为净土。男女二根,即是菩提涅槃真处。彼无知者,信是秽言。

Those persons [who] faithfully accept [this, will] lose [their] former intentions. [With] body [and] life taking refuge, [to] attain [that] “not previously had”. These [and] others foolish [and] obsessed, [are] confused [with him or her] as [a] “Bodhisattva”. Examining [his or her] mind, [complying by] breaking [the] Buddha’s discipline [and] rules [i.e. precepts], [to] secretly practise greedy desires. [With the] mouth within fond [of] saying [the] eyes, ears, nose [and] tongue, all as “Pure Land”, [that] males’ [and] females’ two [sexual] roots, are the same as “Bodhi Nirvāṇa’s true places”. Those ignorant [ones, will] believe these defiled words.

[Note 7: The duped ones will forgo or forget their initial motivations to learn and practise the Dharma purely. They will deviate from their Threefold Refuge (三皈依) in the true Triple Gem (三宝) of the Buddhas (佛), Dharma (法) and Saṃgha (僧), to instead take false refuge in a ‘teacher’ mistaken as a Buddha or Bodhisattva, with his or her corresponding wrong ‘teachings’ and ‘community’.]

[Note 8: They will become blindly eager to please the ‘teacher’, even by going against the basic (and advanced) precepts. They will discreetly have sex with one another, with the major misconception that indulgence in sensual desires is the ‘experience’ of ‘Pure Land’, also saying the sexual organs are where ‘Buddhahood’ can be attained. As Buddhahood is realised with the transcendence of both subtle and such gross greed, (hatred and delusion), with lust being one of the key causes of being trapped in rebirth, they will not progress towards Buddhahood.]

[Note 9: Even in traditional advanced tantric practices, there is never actual sex involved. This is while fake gurus often secretly deceive close disciples to be their sex partners, claiming that sex with them can lead to swift Buddhahood in this lifetime. They also trick these disciples into thinking it is their great privilege to be specially chosen, to have a literally close relationship.]

此名蛊毒魇胜恶鬼年老成魔,恼乱是人。厌足心生,去彼人体。弟子与师,俱陷王难。汝当先觉,不入轮回。迷惑不知,堕无间狱。」

This [is] named [as “one by] witchcraft’s poisons [and] spells subdued, [by an] evil ghost, [whom in his or her] old years, [has] become [a] demon”, [who] disturbs [and] confuses this person. [When] tired, [and with] satisfaction’s mind arising, leaving that person’s body. [The] disciples and teacher, [will] together fall [into] difficulties [with the] king. You should first [be] aware [of this, to] not enter rebirth [again. If] confused [and] not knowing [this, there might be] fall [into the] Uninterrupted Hell.’

[Note 10: When the demonic ghost departs after much disruption and destruction, the ‘teacher’ and disciples will karmically get into trouble with the law with their various backlogged and current misdeeds. The ‘teacher’ will also lose popularity with his or her disciples, as he or she will have no more impressive ‘powers’, as previously enabled by the possessing ghost.]

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

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Related Article:

自见或令他见净土者即是圣者吗?
Does Sight Or Enabling Sight Of Pure Land Means One Is Enlightened?
https://purelanders.com/2020/11/18/does-seeing-or-enabling-seeing-of-pure-land-means-one-is-enlightened

1 Comment

  • 《楞严经》五十阴魔章:第四想阴魔:贪求辨析:【释迦牟尼佛】:「又善男子,受阴虚妙,不遭邪虑,圆定发明。三摩地中,心爱根本,穷览物化性之终始,精爽其心,贪求辨析。尔时天魔候得其便,飞精附人,口说经法。其人先不觉知魔著,亦言自得无上涅槃。来彼求元善男子处,敷座说法。身有威神,摧伏求者。令其座下,虽未闻法,自然心伏。是诸人等,将佛涅槃菩提法身,即是现前我肉身上。父父子子,递代相生,即是法身常住不绝。都指现在即为佛国。无别净居及金色相。其人信受,亡失先心。身命归依,得未曾有。是等愚迷,惑为菩萨。推究其心,破佛律仪,潜行贪欲。口中好言眼耳鼻舌,皆为净土。男女二根,即是菩提涅槃真处。彼无知者,信是秽言。此名蛊毒魇胜恶鬼年老成魔,恼乱是人。厌足心生,去彼人体。弟子与师,俱陷王难。汝当先觉,不入轮回。迷惑不知,堕无间狱。」

    【慧律法师解说】:‘这一段很重要,「都指现在即为佛国」:「现在」,现前所在之世间。「佛国」,即净土。亦即谬说「即染即净」,染净不分。当今昌盛之「人间净土」或「人间佛教」,就是本经此处所指出的现象──几乎一模一 样。须知「人间净土」之说,乃违佛所说;以此人间若能成净土,佛何必再说 「西方净土」,或「东方净土」等?又难道倡「人间净土」者,其智慧超过佛智?佛智真的不如此等人之智?若此人间果能成为净土,佛为何不说?佛为何要教众生舍近求远?再者,「人间佛教」更是违佛所说,因为众所周知,如来说法是为度「六道」众生,不只是度「人道」而 已。故须知,如是之论,实坏佛正理。

    问:「人间净土与人间佛教之说,除了违佛所说,坏佛正理外,还有什么坏处?」
    答:「如是之说有三个过咎(或三种影响):一、令众生贪爱世间而认为是好的。 二、将「佛法」贬为「世间法」。三、误导众生于修行上变成碌碌营营求世间有漏果报,碌碌营营就是很忙碌,求世间之有漏果报,而不求菩提解脱。简言之,即是经上所说:『疑误众生』。」

    问:「这样学佛的话,会不会引来魔障?」
    答:「不会─因为它本身即是一大魔事:以其人对正法的信、解、与知见都坏了,故虽名为学佛,而实只一心一意在世间法上营求,并且坏佛正法,误导众生,因此其魔事已成,故用不着劳动魔更来坏。又,经上所说魔事,皆为魔来坏行者之定,或坏其戒、慧;而『人间佛教』所破坏者,则是坏众生之信根(令对佛法真正的目的失去正信,以致错修或废修。简言之,即是由错信而错解、错行──这一切都是由于信根破坏所引起的结果)。信根若坏,则一切解行及善根皆坏,成为信不具,或不正信,因此信根坏即是『根本坏』,也就是法身慧命统统断。所以,鼓励人家来信佛、听经闻法,把正法推广出去,救了众生的法身慧命,这个功德是很大的!但是,反过来,讲一些不正见的话,来坏了众生的法身慧命,这个罪也是非常重!救了众生的法身慧命,这个功德很大;你这一句话讲出去,会断了众生的法身慧命,这一句话打死不能讲!你这一句话讲出去,可以救众生的法身慧命,拼老命也要讲;但是,要看时间、空间。对于修行人而言,一切魔事之大者,莫过于破坏他的信根(或正信)。…

    破坏别人的正信,就是断了善根,就没办法修行,没有正知正见啊!人间佛教对于佛法及佛弟子之影响,一言以蔽之:彼法若昌,大家便都误将世间有漏福报及对世间法的贪求当作是「修行」,乃至误以为是在修大乘菩萨道(须知,大乘菩萨道是要求无上菩提的,不是贪求世间法的)。因此『人间佛教』若昌,大众对正法误解,失去正信及正修行,佛法之基石即隳坏,大宝重阁速圮。就是毁坏的意思。…

    「男女二根即是菩提涅盘真处」:这里佛所说的,正好符合外道双修者之言。… 淫修者妄谓因此而能速得成佛、即身证菩提涅盘。「彼无知者信是秽言」:这种污秽不堪入耳之言,愚迷无知之人竟会信受,还将它与佛菩萨、菩提、涅盘并论,实乃亵渎神圣,其心之贪爱污秽可知一斑。’

    全文:https://tinyurl.com/yyaqqmu5

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