Translations

[8] [65]-[82] Lóngshū’s Pure Land Text: Eighth Scroll: Eighteen Essays On Present Life’s Connections With Responses《龙舒净土文》第八卷:现世感应十八篇

《龙舒净土文》
Lóngshū’s Pure Land Text
第八卷:现世感应十八篇
[8] Eighth Scroll: Eighteen Essays [On] Present Life’s Connections [With] Responses


极乐世界虽去此百万世界,论其迹则不胜其远,然佛之慧性,含虚空世界,故无所不在。是以一切众生举意动步,皆在佛之性中。至心恳切,无不应验。故此卷叙《现世感应》。

[The] Land [Of] Ultimate Bliss, although [is] away [from] this [world, by] one trillion [百万亿] lands, discussing [on] its traces, [it is] then that extremely far. However, [the] wisdom nature of [the] Buddha, [is also] contained [in all the] empty space [in the] world, thus without where [it is] not present. Therefore, all sentient beings’ raising [of] thoughts [and] moving [of] steps, [are] all in [the] nature [of the] Buddha within. [With the] sincere mind [and] earnestness, [it is] without [those] not [with] responses efficacious. Thus, [with] this scroll narrating ‘Present Life’s Connections [With] Responses’.

见杀生念佛得福

《观音感应记》云:饶州军典郑邻,死至阴府。以误追来,放还。阎罗王告云:「汝还人间,勉力为善。汝见人杀生,但念阿弥陀佛与观世音菩萨。彼得受生,汝亦得福。」由此推之,足以见念阿弥陀佛,诚可荐拔亡者,可增延福寿,不特身后生西方而已。

[1] Seeing Killing [Of] Lives, [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha Attaining Blessings

‘Guānyīn’s [i.e. Contemplator (Of) Sounds Bodhisattva] Connections [With] Responses’ says, Ráo province’s [i.e. today’s Jiāngxī’s (江西) Póyáng (鄱阳)] military officer Zhèng Lín, [when] deceased, arrived [at the] nether world. With [a] mistake [of] pursuing [him to] come [here, he was] released [for] return. King Yama said, ‘[When] you return [to the] human world, make efforts [to] do good. [When] you see people killing lives, only [be] mindful [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name] [i.e. Amitā(bha) Buddha] and[/or] Guānshìyīn Púsà[‘s name] [i.e. Contemplator (Of The) World’s Sounds Bodhisattva]. Those [killed will] attain [better] rebirths, [and] you [will] also attain blessings.’ From this inferring, [it is] sufficient to see [that with] reciting [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name, this] can truly deliver [by] ‘pulling out’ those deceased. [It] can increase blessings, [to] extend lifespan, [and is] not only [for] after death’s birth [in the] Western [Pure Land].

陈企念佛却鬼

予同郡望江陈企,尝妄杀人。后见鬼现,企畏惧,急念阿弥陀佛,鬼不敢近。企念佛不已,鬼遂不现。后常念佛,临终坐化。后半年,附本家孙女名妙光,云:「我因念阿弥陀佛,已生极乐世界。」举动言语,一如平生,亲戚、相知皆来看。至两三日,家人云:「惜乎尔在生时,不曾传得喜神供养。」企遂现,俨然如平生,唯面带少颜,盖西方长生不老。其头如佛之螺髻,盖成佛之渐也。望江士人周宪叔为予言之。

[2] Chén Qǐ [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, [With] Ghosts Retreating

[In] my same prefecture Wàngjiāng [i.e. today’s Ānhuī province’s (安徽省) Ānqìng (安庆) [was] Chén Qǐ, [who] once rashly killed [a] person. Later seeing ghosts appear, Qǐ [was] fearful, [and] urgently recited Āmítuófó[‘s name, with which the] ghosts [did] not dare [to come] near. [As] Qǐ [was] mindful [of] Buddha endlessly, [the] ghosts thereupon [did] not appear. [He was] later constantly mindful [of] Buddha, [and when] approaching [life’s] end, sat [and] departed. [In the] latter half [of the] year, possessing his family’s granddaughter named Miàoguāng [i.e. Wonderful Light], [he] said, ‘I, because [of] mindfulness [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name, am] already born [in his] Land [Of] Ultimate Bliss.’ [‘Her’] movements [and] spoken language, [was] exactly the same [as those] throughout [his] life, [as] relatives [and those who] knew each other, all came [to] see [him]. Until two [to] three days [later, his] family members said, ‘[It is a] pity [that] when you were alive, [you] never passed down [a] portrait [for] making offerings.’ Qǐ thereupon appeared, similar [to him], like [he was] throughout [his] life, only [with his] face carrying [a] young complexion, because [in the] Western [Pure Land, there is] long life without ageing. His head [was] like [the] coiled ‘topknot’ [of the] Buddha, because of [him] accomplishing Buddhahood gradually [there. A] Wàngjiāng person, Zhōu Xiànshū, for me spoke of [this].

邹宾王念佛梦觉

予尝劝镇江士人邹宾王以西方说,且言若无间暇,但早晨合掌向西,念南谟阿弥陀佛十遍亦得。宾王信之。其夜遂梦与一士人同赴法,正恐惧间,遂念阿弥陀佛至十声,乃觉。岂非佛以此坚其信心乎?

[3] Zōu Bīnwáng [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, [From A] Dream Awakening

I once encouraged [a] Zhènjiāng person, Zōu Bīnwáng, with speak [of the] Western [Pure Land], moreover saying [that] if without time [to] spare, only [in the] early morning, [with] joined palms towards [the] West, reciting ‘Námó Āmítuófó’ ten times, [will] likewise attain [rebirth there]. Bīnwáng believed this. That night, [he] thereupon dreamt [to be] with a person, together going [to a] Dharma [assembly]. Just when fearful, thereupon reciting Āmítuófó until ten times, [he] then awakened. How [is it] not [the] Buddha with this strengthening his faith?

张继祖念佛荐亡

予尝与镇江士人张继祖言西方事,继祖信之。其乳母死,多为念阿弥陀佛追荐。一夜梦其乳母,借背子衣之,来谢继祖而别去。此念佛追荐之效也。

[4] Zhāng Jìzǔ [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, Delivering [The] Deceased

I once [was] with [a] Zhènjiāng person, Zhāng Jìzǔ. Speaking [on the] Western [Pure Land’s] matters, Jìzǔ believed them. [When] his wet nurse died, [he was] mostly with reciting [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name to] deliver [her]. One night, [he] dreamt [of] his wet nurse. Using [and] bearing her afterbirth clothes, [she] came [to] thank Jìzǔ and left [to] go. This [is the] efficacy of mindfulness [of] Buddha [for] deliverance.

刘慧仲念佛安寝

予旧相识刘慧仲,湖州长兴人。以夜梦多恐惧,予劝以念阿弥陀佛。慧仲至诚高声念一百八遍,当夜遂安寝。次日如前念诵,自此皆得安寝。以此见佛力广大,无所不可。此予序所谓安静形神者也。

[5] Liú Huìzhòng [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, Peacefully Sleeping

I [have an] old acquaintance, Liú Huìzhòng, [who is a] Húzhōu’s Chángxīng [i.e. today’s Zhèjiāng’s (浙江) Qiántáng (钱塘)] person. [As] with nightly dreams [having] much fear, I encouraged [him to be] with reciting [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name]. Huìzhòng [with] sincerity recited [it] aloud one hundred [and] eight times. That night, [he] thereupon [had] peaceful sleep. [The] next day, like before, [he] recited aloud. Since then, every [night, he] attained peaceful sleep. With this, [it can be] seen [that the] Buddha’s power [is] vast [and] great, without that not possible. This [in] my preface, [is that] so-called peaceful body [and] mind.

阮嫂念佛眼明

予同郡怀宁县营田庄有阮念三,嫂患两目将盲。常念阿弥陀佛,遂得开明。此予亲见之。

[6] Ruǎn’s Elder Brother’s Wife [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, [With] Eyes Clear

[In] my same prefecture Huáiníng county’s Yíngtián village is Ruǎn Niànsān. [His] elder brother’s wife [was] ill [with] both eyes going blind. [With] constant reciting [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name, they] thereupon attained opening [with] clarity. Of this, I personally saw.

阎罗王劝婆念佛

镇江金坛县株林村蒋婆,年七十许,死至阴府。命未尽,当还。阎罗王问云:「汝能念经否?」对云:「不能。」王云:「汝不能念经,但念阿弥陀佛。」既放还,蒋婆谓:「阎罗王教我念佛,更无可疑。」故常念此佛名,近百二十岁方终。其生净土,必可必矣。岂非以其念佛而又延寿乎?何其寿之多也?金坛士人张延芝为予言之。

[7] King Yama Encouraging [A] Grandmother [To Be] Mindful [Of] Buddha

[In] Zhènjiāng’s Jīntán county’s Zhūlín village [was] grandmother Jiǎng. [At the] age [of] perhaps seventy, [when] deceased, [she] arrived [at the] nether world. [As her] lifespan [had] yet [to be] exhausted, [she] then returned. King Yama asked, ‘[Are] you able [to] recite sūtras or not?’ [She] replied, ‘[I am] not able [to.’ The] King said, ‘[If] you [are] not able [to] recite sūtras, only recite Āmítuófó[‘s name].’ Since released [to] return, grandmother Jiǎng said, ‘[As] King Yama taught me [to be] mindful [of] Buddha, [this] is even more [so], without [that which] can [be] doubted.’ Thus constantly reciting this Buddha’s name, nearing [a] hundred [and] twenty years [old, her life] then ended. Her birth [in] Pure Land, definitely can [be] certain. How [can it] not [be] with her mindfulness [of] Buddha, then also extending [her] lifespan? [A] Jīntán person, Zhāng Yánzhī, for me spoke of [this].

邵安抚念佛脱难

晋江邵彪,字希文。为士人时,梦至一官府,人皆称「安抚」 。彪自喜曰:「岂非予及第后作安抚乎?」行至前,见一官员,问云:「汝知汝未及第因否?」对云:「不知。」令引彪去看,见一大镬煮蛤蜊,见彪,乃作人声,叫彪姓名。彪遂念阿弥陀佛。方念一声,蛤蜊皆变作黄雀飞去。彪后果及第,至安抚使。以此见杀生阻人前程,不可不戒;又见佛力广大,不可不敬。官职自有定分,不可苟求。

[8] Commissioner Shào [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, Liberating [From] Disaster

[In] Jìnjiāng [is] Shào Biāo, [with his] style name [of] Xī Wén. When as [a] scholar, [he] dreamt [of] arriving [at] a government residence, [with] people all calling [him] ‘Commissioner’. Biāo [was] personally joyful [and] said, ‘How [can this] not [be with] me passing [my] examination, later becoming [a] Commissioner?’ Walking [to] arrive [at the] front, [he] saw an official, [who] asked, ‘[Do] you know [the] cause [of] you yet [to] pass [your] examination [or] not?’ [He] replied, ‘[I do] not know [it].’ Leading Biāo [to] go [and] see, [he] saw a great cauldron boiling clams. Seeing Biāo, [they] then made human sounds, calling Biāo’s surname [and] name. Biāo thereupon recited Āmítuófó[‘s name]. Then reciting one time, [the] clams all changed [to] become yellow sparrows [and] flew away. Biāo consequently passed [his] examination, [and] reached [the post of] Commissioner [for] Pacification. With this, seeing [that] killing [of] lives obstructs people’s future prospects, [it] cannot [be] not abstained [from]. Also seeing [the] Buddha’s power’s vastness [and] greatness, [it] cannot [be] not respected. [As] official positions have [been] predetermined, [they] cannot [be] inappropriately sought.

念佛风疾不作

予近附舟至镇江,闸中阙水不能行,乃于金山借四经,即《阿弥陀经》也。欲校勘刊板广传,举笔之时,右手有风,其指自掉,写字不便。予乃举指念阿弥陀佛与观世音菩萨数声,祷告乞除风疾,以成就写此经。祷毕,指遂不掉,以至终帙无恙。以此见佛与菩萨只在目前,但人信心不至耳。

[9] [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, [With] Rheumatism’s Sickness Not Flaring Up 

I [was] recently attached [to a] boat arriving [at] Zhènjiāng, [when at the] flood gates within, [as there was] lack [of] water, [it was] not able [to] move. Then at Jīnshān, [I] borrowed four sūtras, [with them] being [the] Amitā[bha] Sūtra. Desiring [to] compare [and] correct [them, for] publication [and] propagation, when raising [the] brush, [my] right hand had rheumatism, [with] its fingers self-dropping [it, with] writing words inconvenienced. I then raised [the] fingers [and] recited Āmítuófó[‘s name] and[/or] Guānshìyīn Púsà[‘s name] several times, praying [with a] request [to] eliminate [the] rheumatism, with [this for] accomplishing writing [of] these sūtras. [With the] prayer completed, [the] fingers thereupon [did] not drop [the brush], with [this] until [writing to the] end [of the] book covers, without [having] illness. With this, [it can be] seen [that the] Buddha [and the] Bodhisattva [are] already before [our] eyes, only [with] people’s faithful minds not reached only.

梦中念佛脱恐惧

予于梦寐中有恐惧时,念阿弥陀佛与观世音菩萨,未尝不即安稳,或即觉惺。足以见佛与菩萨威神之速如此,但办信心,效无不应。

[10] Within Dreams, [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, Liberating [From] Fear

When I [am] in [a] dream sleeping, having fear within, [with] reciting [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name and[/or] Guānshìyīn Púsà[‘s name, I have] not yet once not immediately [become] peaceful [and] calm, or [to] immediately awaken tranquilly. [It is] sufficient with [this, to] see [the] speed of [the] Buddha’s and [the] Bodhisattva’s majestic supernormal [power, to be] like this. Only [with] preparation [of the] faithful mind, [there will be] efficacy, without [those] not responded [to].

念佛屋不压死

有一老妇双瞽,令小儿牵行,常念阿弥陀佛。一日,息于旧屋之下,屋忽倾倒,小儿走去,老妇在下,乃有二木相拄,护于老妇之上,得不压死。此念佛之效也。妙定居士为予言之。

[11] [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, [With] House Not Crushing [To] Death

[There] is an old woman [with] both [eyes] blind, [who was by her] small son led [to] walk, [who] constantly recited Āmítuófó[‘s name]. One day, resting in [an] old house below, [the] house suddenly collapsed [and] fell. [The] small son walked over, [and the] old woman was [found] below, then having two wooden [posts] leaning [on] each other, protecting [the] old woman [from] above, resulting [in] not [being] crushed [to] death. This [is the] efficacy of mindfulness [of] Buddha. Layperson Miàodìng for me spoke of [this].

念佛痁疾遂愈

有官员李子清,寄居秀州。颇好道家,尝从学于予。前年久苦痁疾。予告之云:「但恐子清不信,若信之必效。」予乃授以一方,令临发时,专念阿弥陀佛,而服此药。子清从之,其日遂愈八分。次日复如是,遂全愈。子清由是笃信佛理,常以《净土文》置于袖中。  

[12] [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, [With] Chronic Malaria’s Sickness Thereupon Healing

[There] is [a] government official, Lǐ Zǐqīng, [who] temporarily resided [at] Xiùzhōu [i.e. today’s Zhèjiāng’s (浙江) Jiāxìng (嘉兴)]. [He was] quite fond [of] Taoism, [but] once followed [to] learn from me. [In the] year before, [for a long [time, he] suffered [from] chronic malaria. I said [to] him, ‘[I] only fear [that] Zǐqīng [does] not believe. If believing this, [it will] definitely [be] efficacious.’ I then with a prescription given, ordered [him to], when [the sickness is] going [to] flare up, [have] focused reciting [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name], then taking this medicine. Zǐqīng followed this. [On] that day, [he was] thereupon healed [in] eight parts. [The] next day, again [practising] thus, [he was] thereupon completely healed. Zǐqīng due [to] this, [had] deep faith [in] Buddhist principles, [and was] constantly with [a] ‘Pure Land Text’ placed in [his] sleeve within.

念佛痼疾皆愈

梁氏女两目俱盲。念阿弥陀佛三年,系念不绝,双目开明。又冯氏夫人亦念佛,久病遂愈。见第五卷。

[13] [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, [With] Chronic Sicknesses All Healing

[A] Liáng family’s daughter’s two eyes [were] together blind. [With] reciting [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name for] three years, [with] continual mindfulness unending, both eyes [attained] opening [with] clarity. Also, [a] Féng family’s wife [was] likewise [with] mindfulness [of] Buddha, [with a] chronic sickness thereupon healed. See [the] Fifth Scroll.

绣佛舍利迸出

赣州廉中大夫恭人(按:「恭人」系命妇封号,宋制中散大夫以上之妻封恭人),绣丈六身阿弥陀佛。绣方及半,舍利迸出。其亲戚郑逢原为予言之。

[14] [When] Embroidering [A] Buddha [Image], [With] Śarīras Spurting Out

Gànzhōu’s [official] Liánzhōng Grand Master’s respectable person (Note: ‘Respectable persons’ [are] connected [to] titled nobles’ wives, [as their] conferred names. [The] Sòng [dynasty] designated [those as] Zhōngsàn Grand Masters and above, [to be with their] wives conferred [as] ‘respectable persons’), embroidered [a one] zhàng [and] six [chǐs tall] bodily [image of] Āmítuófó. [With] embroidering then reaching halfway, śarīras spurted out. Her relative Zhèng Féngyuán, for me spoke of [this]. [Note: With one zhàng being 170 centimetres, and one chǐ being 17 centimetres, the image was 2.72 metres tall, which is said to be the height of the Buddha in our world, as calculated in this ‘link‘.]

佛像常有舍利

真州钟离少师宅,自任氏夫人修西方,雕阿弥陀佛像,长四寸八分,龛饰甚严,常顶戴行道。其像眉间常迸出舍利,大如黍米,光彩照人。出《宝珠集》。

[15] Buddha Statue Constantly Having Śarīras

[In] Zhēnzhōu’s [official] Zhōng Líshǎo’s residence, his [mother], Rèn family’s madam, cultivated [to be born in the] Western [Pure Land. She] carved [an] Āmítuófó statue, [that was] four cùns [and] eight fēns [tall, to be put on a] shrine, [that was] decorated extremely majestically. [He] constantly, [on his] crown, carried [it to] practise [the] path. That statue, [from the] eyebrows’ between, constantly spurted out śarīras, [as] big as glutinous rice, [with] radiant light illuminating people. [This is] from ‘Treasure Gems’ Collection’. [Note: With one cùns being 3.33 cm, and one fēn being 0.33 cm, the statue was 15.96 cm tall.]

梦佛遂得聪辩  

隋慧思禅师,因梦阿弥陀佛与之说法,其后聪辩过人,祥瑞不一。出《往生传》。  

[16] Dreaming [Of] Buddha, Thereupon Attaining Intelligence [And] Eloquence

Suí [Dynasty’s] Chán Master Huìsī, because [of] dreaming [of] Āmítuófó, and of [him] speaking [the] Dharma, he [was] later [with] intelligence [and] eloquence [that] surpassed people, [with] auspicious signs [that are] not singular. [This is] from ‘[Pure Land] Rebirths’ Biographies’《净土往生传》.

念佛治病得愈

近年秀州一僧,常念阿弥陀佛,为人治病。有病者请往,常得痊愈。秀州人皆能言之。

[17] [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, Curing Sicknesses [And] Attaining Healing

[In] recent years’ Xiùzhōu [i.e. today’s Zhèjiāng’s (浙江) Jiāxìng (嘉兴)], [is] a monastic, [who] constantly recited Āmítuófó[‘s name], for people curing [their] sicknesses. [There] are those sick, [who] invited [him to] go towards [them, who] constantly attained complete healing. Xiùzhōu’s people [are] all able [to] speak of [this].

念佛孙儿免难

予乡村落间有一老人,每有事,必合掌至额,念阿弥陀佛。其孙儿方二三岁,因随母至田野,忽失之。老人寻访不见。后数日,人告云:「在溪外。」果寻得之。见足迹遍于滩上,其溪甚深,不知此儿何缘过彼。又久而无恙。人以为其祖至诚念阿弥陀佛所感也。

[18] [With] Mindfulness [Of] Buddha, [With] Grandson Avoiding Disaster

[In] my village settlement within, [there] is an old man. Every [time, whenever] having [problematic] matters, [he will] definitely, [with] joined palms, reach [his] forehead, [and] recite Āmítuófó[‘s name]. His grandson [was] then two [to] three years [old]. Because [he] followed [his] mother [to] arrive [at the] countryside, [she] suddenly lost him. [The] old man looked for [him, and] inquired after [him, but did] not see [him]. Several days later, [a] person told [him], ‘[He is] at [the] mountain stream’s [other] side.’ Sure enough, [he] searched [and] got [to] him. Seeing [his] footprints everywhere on [its] shore, [yet as] that stream [was] extremely deep, [it is] not known [that] this grandson, [with] what condition, crossed [to be] there. Also, [it has been] long, yet [his grandson was] without illness. People believed [this to be with] his grandfather’s sincere recitation [of] Āmítuófó[‘s name], that connected [them safely together].

Namo Amituofo : Translation by Shen Shi’an

Suggestions for improvement are welcomed. More translations are available at amituofo.com, purelanders.com and TheDailyEnlightenment.com.

宋‧王日休
《龙舒净土文》
第八卷:现世感应十八

Sòng [Dynasty’s] Wáng Rìxiū
Lóngshū’s Pure Land Text:
Fifth Scroll: Eighteen Essays [On] Present Life’s Connections [With] Responses

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[7] Dharma Flower Bhikṣuṇī [In Her] Later Life Becoming Officials’ Prostitute
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