[7] Seventh Essay On Practices’ Dharma Door: The Buddha Asked Ānanda… 修持法门七:佛问阿难云…

[7] Seventh [Essay On] Practices’ Dharma Door

[(The) Buddha Asked Ānanda…]


[The] Buddha asked Ānanda, ‘[Do] you desire [to] see hell-beings [or] not?’


Ānanda said, ‘[I] desire [to] see [them].’


[The] Buddha said, ‘[With the] body doing evil, mouth speaking evil, [and] mind thinking evil, this [is a] hell-being too.’ Because [that] called human life’s good [and] evil, [is] no more than [the] three karmas [of] body, speech [and] mind.


Now [with the] three karmas together evil, is as only black karma, therefore falling [into] hell. If [with the] three karmas together good, thus as only white karma, then born [in a] heaven. If [the] three karmas within has one karma good, thus as mixed karma, also not falling [into] hell.


Thus, [with the] body [and] mind, although evil, yet [with the] mouth reciting [the] Buddha’s name, also [is with] one karma good, [with this] far surpassing of [the] three karmas [being] together evil.


Moreover, when [with the] mouth reciting [the] Buddha’s [name], also able [to be with the] mind contemplating [the] Buddha’s image, then [is the] mind’s karma good. Uprighting that body, and [with a] hand carrying counting beads, then [is with] body’s karma good. [If] constantly able [to be] good [with] these three karmas, with cultivation [of] Pure Land [practice, this] definitely [attains the] High Grade’s Birth.

[Note: If the mind listens wholeheartedly to the Buddha’s name that is also recited wholeheartedly, the mind’s karma is already good. This is easier to practise than toggling possibly scatteredly, between reciting the Buddha’s name and contemplating the Buddha’s image. If the body is upright when reciting and listening to the Buddha’s name wholeheartedly, even without using prayer beads, the body’s karma is already good. This is easier to practise than toggling possibly scatteredly, between reciting the Buddha’s name and moving beads.]


I, once in Zhènjiāng heard [a] person selling prawn, [with] shouting [to sell the] prawn, [with each] one shout, then knowing his three karmas [are] together evil. Why thus?


[With the] body bearing [the] prawn [to] carry [them, this is] then [with] body’s [physical] karma evil. [With the] mind desiring [to] sell [the] prawn, [this is] then [with] mind’s [mental] karma evil. [With the] mouth shouting [to] sell [the] prawn, [this is] then [with] mouth’s [verbal] karma evil.


[With] this, know [that with] shouting [to sell the] prawn, [with each] one shout, [is] then [with the] three karmas together evil. This [is the] Buddha’s so-called hell-being too. With this contemplating that, then [presently] before [our] eyes, [as] those so-called hell-beings [are] many, how [is this] not fearful!


Sentient beings with ignorance not knowing cause [and] effect, fall into transgressions [and] evils, [to] depths pitiable. Those knowing this speaking, for [them] guiding, transforming [and] instructing, are named [as those giving the] Dharma gift. Those [with the] Dharma gift for giving, [are with] giving of [that] greatest, [with] this becoming blessed rewards, how [can they be] easily measured?

或曰:「人诵佛名,一向称诵,正如呼一人,一向呼之,其人必怒。故一向诵佛名者,未足为善也。」是不然,众生自无始以来, 口业过恶,积如山海。多诵佛名,以涤荡之,犹惧不足,岂可以称呼常人之名为比也?

Perhaps saying, ‘[As a] person reciting [the] Buddha’s name, continuously praising [and] reciting [him, is] just like a person, continuously calling him, that [called] person will [be] angry. Thus, those continuously reciting [the] Buddha’s name, [are] yet [to have] enough doing [of] good.’ [It] is not thus, [as] sentient beings, from beginninglessness since, [have] verbal karma’s transgressions [and] evils, accumulated like mountains [and] oceans. [With] much recitation [of the] Buddha’s name, with [this] washing them off, still fearing [this is] not enough, how can [a] person with praising [and] calling constantly be named for comparison?


Moreover, all Buddhas personally teach this Dharma door [of] mindfulness [of] Buddha, [with] that for guiding [and] supporting sentient beings, [with] good [for] their mouths’ karma, [and] with gradual good [for] their bodies [and] minds. Thus, calling those continuously reciting [the] Buddha’s name, [as] yet [to have] enough doing [of] good, [these are] words of [the] worldly, not words of all Buddhas, [who] guide and] support sentient beings. [Thus, those words] without [that] sufficient [to be] accepted [as true].


Sòng [Dynasty’s] Wáng Rìxiū
Lóngshū’s Pure Land Text:
Fourth Scroll: Fifteen Essays [On] Practices’ Dharma Doors

Namo Amituofo : Translation by Shen Shi’an

Related Articles:

Previous Essay:

[6] Sixth Essay On Practices’ Dharma Door: [When Śākyamuni Buddha Was In The World…]

Next Essay:

[8] Eighth Essay On Practices’ Dharma Door: [Completely Upholding The Purification Precepts…]

Fifteen Essays:

Lóngshū’s Pure Land Text:
[4] Fourth Scroll: Fifteen Essays On Practices’ Dharma Doors

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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