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|Other Titles:||An Interpretation of the Chanting Method in Amitabha Pure Land Buddhism, with Reference to Three Sutras in the Da Zheng Zang|
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Pure Land Buddhism is prevalent in China, and one of its schools, Amitabha Pure Land Buddhism, is particularly popular. Gaining rebirth in Amitabha’s Pure Land is the practitioners' highest goal. The Amitabha Pure Land school emphasizes rebirth in Amitabha’s paradise rather than becoming (a) Buddha and achieving enlightenment in this very life, because in this Pure Land people can be free from suffering, feel tremendously joyful and tranquil, and attain enlightenment as an eighth-level Bodhisattva. Since, according to the practitioners' point of view, the meaning of rebirth in this land is equivalent to that of becoming Buddha, the method of rebirth is the most essential concept in the theory of the Amitabha Pure Land school. Among the methods of rebirth, nian fo fa men (one way of chanting Buddha' s name) gradually became orthodox practice; chanting Amitabha’s name ten times is seen as the most important and the best mode of attaining rebirth. Nonetheless, people of other Buddhist traditions often question the validity of this method. Their queries are as follows: What is the meaning of chanting Amitabha’s name ten times? Does this practice still presuppose the law of cause and effect? The author of this paper discusses these topics with regard to Pure Land sutras in the Da Zheng Zang and their commentaries, and provides a more detailed interpretation of Amitabha Pure Land methodology.
|Appears in Collections:||師大學報|
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