Pure Land

Discussion in 'Buddhism' started by scrap_rat, Jun 6, 2006.

  1. scrap_rat

    scrap_rat Member

    I'm just curious, are there any Pure Landers on this forum? It's been one of the principal forms of Buddhism I've found myself drawn to over the winter. Though it is the dominant form Buddhism in many parts of Asia, not seen much in North America (and even less down here in the Deep South).

  2. Bhaskar

    Bhaskar Members

    Wht about tofu?
  3. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member Super Moderator

    From what I've read of Pure Land Buddhism, I'm not real impressed.

    It seems to be a faith based religion where a mantra is repeated and devotion to Amitabha Buddha (not Siddhartha Gautama) guarantees rebirth in a "pure" land from which enlightenment is easier to obtain.
    Seems to be designed for the masses.

    But I could be wrong.
  4. Bhaskar

    Bhaskar Members

    I wouldn't knock faith. It is a very very powerful quality.
  5. scrap_rat

    scrap_rat Member

    I think this is a case of you being right but not everyone shares the same values you place on your observations. Amen to the sentiment that faith us not a bad thing.

    The Pure Land sects are firmly placed within the sphere of Mahayana Buddhism, and accordingly it is applicable to those who have commitments in life. It seems very in keeping with idea of deep compassion which is so central to Buddhism as a whole that there should be a way left open to us deeply flawed beings wandering through the desert of the real.

    I believe it is the Jodo Shinshu which is entirely lay laid with no monastic element.

    Siddharta is hardly overlooked either as it is through him that Amitabha was made known in the first place in our historical era. Neither are the two Bodhisattvas, Avalokiteshvara and Mahasthamaprapta, the former of which I am partial toward in his/her East Asian form of Kwan Shi Yin.
  6. scrap_rat

    scrap_rat Member

    Great roasted with potatoes with a little rosemary... but I degress, I think.
  7. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member Super Moderator

    This is true. I'm just saying that I don't care for it, to each his own.
    As far as faith...It doesn't seem as if the Buddha placed it very high on his list, from what I've read.

    But then we also have this....
  8. scrap_rat

    scrap_rat Member

    For the more esoteric side of Pure Land I would reccomend Mind Seal of the Buddhas by the Patriarch Ou-i. It's online here:

    And Pure Land, Pure Mind:

    Personally, and I mean no offense here, I wouldn't assume to know what the Buddha put high or low; I am removed from him by 2500 years or so and stand equally remote in terms of language and culture. "Be a lamp unto yourselves" is frequently attributed to him but as the flame is passed from lamp to lamp, it is and is not the same.
  9. Bhaskar

    Bhaskar Members

    I actually read some teachings from a grand master of Pure Land and found it very very meaningful.
  10. scrap_rat

    scrap_rat Member

    Our monthly discussion group at the UU landed on the subject of faith, what separates faith from trust and how do you make the jump from doubt to belief. I don't an answer but I'm grateful that my karma has left me the capacity for faith. Maybe the Jodo Shinshu are correct and faith is simply a gift from Amida Butsu.
  11. I don't really know how I feel about pure land,
    from reading some stuff on it, I think that when the sutras speak about rewards in a pure land, they're actually referancing the transformation of the practitioner's life into a pure land, but that's just my opinion.

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