[127] Once An Evil Thought Arises, Be Wholeheartedly Mindful Of The Buddha 一起恶念,一心念佛

[127] Once [An] Evil Thought Arises, [Be] Wholeheartedly Mindful [Of The] Buddha


All [then] having thoughts [with] anger, lustful desires, competitiveness, being peeved [and] others occasionally sprouting, [should] immediately have [this] thought, saying, ‘[As] I [am a] person [who practises] mindfulness [of the] Buddha[‘s name (Āmítuófó: 阿弥陀佛)], how can [I] give rise [to] this kind [of] thoughts?’

[Note 1: All evil and suffering arise from thoughts of greed, hatred and delusion (i.e. three poisons: 三毒), before being expressed as evil words and/or deeds. Even if such evil thoughts do not become words and deeds, there is still evil karma (恶业) created in the mind, with suffering arising in the mind in the moment.]

[Note 2: ‘Mindfulness’ of evil thoughts, which is defiling in nature, is the opposite of mindfulness of Buddha, which is purifying in nature. Thus, with aspiration to be pure, there should not be self-sabotage by entertaining evil thoughts.]


[These] thoughts arisen [will] immediately cease. [Over a] long [time] thus, all thoughts that exhaust [the] mind [and] injure [the] body, [will] all [be] without causes [to] then arise. All day, due [to the] Buddha’s inconceivable meritorious virtues, empowering body [and] mind.

[Note 3: As the mind can only have one thought in each moment, when a reflective pure thought arises, the destructive defiled thought will cease in the moment. There can also be direct mindfulness of the Buddha. When a (good or) pure corrective thought arises, the otherwise continual flow of evil thoughts will be cut off instantly. If the flow is strong, there can be more mindfulness of the Buddha.]

[Note 4: When there is mindfulness of the Buddha, for eliminating the three poisons, there will be the functioning of his pure light (清净光) that eliminates greed, joyful light (欢喜光) that eliminates hatred, and wisdom light (智慧光) that eliminates delusion. This empowerment of blessings by the Buddha thus disempowers the three poisons. For nine other functions of the Buddha’s light, see]

[Note 5: As body and mind are interconnected, if the mind has evil thoughts arising regularly, the body will not fare so well naturally. Many chronic sicknesses that are aggravated over time arise from sustained and/or increased habitual negative thinking, which leads to stress, pain, high blood pressure, cancer and such. Thus, the (good and) purifying effects of mindfulness of Buddha, which is curative in nature, is good for both mental and physical health.]


[I] dare [to] guarantee [that] not needing ten days, [you will] then see great results.

[Note 6: With mindful discipline to always practise the above immediately once there are evil thoughts arising, efficacy is assured. For those with strong negative thoughts, six to ten days of continual practice are probably needed. For those with average negative thoughts, about five days are probably needed. For those with weak negative thoughts, one to five days are probably needed. This is so as the stronger a negative habit is, the more time for practice there must be, for substituting it with an even stronger (good and) pure habit.]

Pure Land Tradition’s 13th Patriarch Great Master Yìnguāng
Dharma Master Yìnguāng’s Collected Writings (Second Compilation): Letter For Hú Zuòchū;
Record [Of] Great Master Yìnguāng’s Collected Writings’ Essence (127th Short Section): 3rd [Chapter]: Guidance [On] Practice Methods: Third, Clear Remedies [For] Habitual Tendencies (34th Short Section)
[Ref: #127 / 3.3.34]

Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an

Related Text:

Record Of Great Master Yìnguāng’s Collected Writings’ Essence

Please be mindful of your speech, Amituofo!

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