Monday, October 7, 2013

A few verses on the right attitude of hearing the Amida Dharma

Raising the Sutra book to the forehead before reading
and after closing it, shows that the sacred writings are
not ordinary books. The teaching of the Buddha is supreme
in the world and should be received with veneration.

"Buddha said to Ananda, 'When they hear the profound Dharma, they joyfully accept it and do not entertain any doubt; and so, remembering the Buddha Amida even once, they sincerely aspire to be born in that land.'”
(Larger Sutra on Amida Buddha)

As we clearly see in this passage, the right attitude of mind when hearing the Amida Dharma is of joyful and immediate acceptance, like a child who welcomes without any restraint the calling of his Parent. "Without any doubt" and "joyfully accept" also mean that we do NOT apply the categories of our unenlightened mind to Amida Dharma, nor modify it to accommodate it to our own opinions.  By recognizing our inability to comprehend the profundity of the Buddha’s Mind and of His Dharma, we simply accept it as it is, with faith and gratitude.

Shakyamuni also said in the same sutra:

“Arrogant, corrupt and indolent people
Cannot readily accept this teaching.
But those who have met Buddhas in their past lives
Rejoice to hear it.”

“Arrogant, corrupt and indolent people” are those who assume that they have the right and capacity to transform the Amida Dharma, to change it and use it to support their own opinions or the various philosophies and ideologies of samsara. They are those who approach the Amida Dharma with a possessive mind, and not with faith, humbleness and veneration. They treat the Amida Dharma like it is a product of human intellect, and not the most precious medicine offered by the Buddha. Thus, they can’t be humble. Because they are incapable to revere the Amida Dharma they are like people who treat diamonds like mere stones.



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