Shoshinge, Part 10

Moving along with part 2 of the Shoshinge, we talked a little bit about the first 4 lines of the second part the last time, and mentioned a little bit about the 7 masters of Buddhism. Now, as we continue along the second part, we will be getting more in detail to what Shinran Shonin thought about the seven masters of Buddhism.

This part, lines 49-60, focus on Nagarjuna:

49.    釋(しゃー) 迦(かー) 如(にょー) 來(らい) 楞(りょう) 伽(がー) 山(せーん)
Shakyamuni, the Tathagata, while dwelling on Mount Lanka,
50.    爲(いー) 衆(しゅー) 告(ごーう) 命(みょう) 南(なん) 天(てん) 竺(じーく)
Prophesied to the assembly of monks that in Southern India
51.    龍(りゅう) 樹(じゅー) 大(だーい) 士(じ) 出(しゅーつ) 於(とー) 世(せー)
A Great Being named Nagarjuna would appear in the world
52.    悉(じつ) 能(のう) 摧(ざい) 破(はー) 有(うー) 無(むー) 見(けーん)
And destroy all the wrong views on ‘existence’ and ‘non-existence’.
53.    宣(せん) 説(ぜつ) 大(だい) 乘(じょう) 無(むー) 上(じょう) 法(ほーう)
Proclaiming the unsurpassed teaching of Mahayana;
54.    證(しょう) 歡(かん) 喜(ぎー) 地(じー) 生(しょう) 安(あん) 樂(らーく)
He would reach the Stage of Joy and attain birth in the Land of Peace and Bliss.
55.    顯(けん) 示(じー) 難(なん) 行(ぎょう) 陸(ろく) 路(ろー) 苦(くー)
He taught that the difficult practices are toilsome like traveling by land,
56.    信(しん) 樂(ぎょう) 易(いー) 行(ぎょう) 水(しいー) 道(どう) 樂(らーく)
And urged us to believe that the Easy Practice is pleasant like sailing on water.
57.    憶(おく) 念(ねん) 彌(みー) 陀(だー) 佛(ぶつ) 本(ほん) 願(がーん)
When a thought of mindfulness of Amida’s Primal Vow arises,
58.    自(じー) 然(ねーん) 即(そーく) 時(じー) 入(にゅ) 必(ひつ) 定(じょーう)
At that instant we spontaneously enter the Stage of Assurance.
59.    唯(ゆい) 能(のう) 常(じょう) 稱(しょう) 如(にょー) 來(らい) 號(ごーう)
Always reciting only the Name of the Tathagata,
60.    應(おう) 報(ほう) 大(だーい) 悲(ひ) 弘(ぐー) 誓(ぜい) 恩(おーん)
We should seek to repay our indebtedness to his Great Compassion.

Explanation:

Originally, Nagarjuna was called the great master of the Mahayana tradition of Buddhism. I mentioned when I first started this website in an earlier post that there are many divisions of Buddhism, and there are also many sects. Our pure land sect falls within the Mahayana tradition, along with Zen Buddhism and others. So, Mahayana Buddhism really started with Nagarjuna as he is one of the oldest (if not the oldest) one who taught the Mahayana teachings.

Its ironic, because Nagarjuna actually was born a Hindu Brahmin and converted to Buddhism. In today’s India, there are very few Buddhists, and Hindu’s seem to dominate along with Muslims. You would never associate Buddhism with India, yet it originated there, and originated from its roots in Hinduism. However, today, people associate Buddhism with the far east and China and Japan. Now, Hinduism and Buddhism are two totally different Religions, but share a common thread. Historically, Hinduism is the oldest known religion.

So Nagarjuna was really involved in spreading the Mahayana tradition of Buddhism all around India. He did other things, but most of what he did and the commentary he wrote was about the Mahayana tradition and the Sutras. Nevertheless, the common thread in all of his writings and commentaries urged us to practice the Nembutsu, or in other words, the Name of Amida Buddha. The theories he proposed about Sakyamuni Buddha’s teachings are literally, the backbone for today’s Buddhist teachings in the Mahayana sect. He stated that practice of the name is the “Easy Practice” which will inevitably lead one to the pure land. This “Easy Practice” is what is discussed in the lines above. Recitation of the Nembutsu with sincere devotion is the easiest and best practice, for this is in accordance with Amida’s Primal Vow, and will be the cause for one’s birth in the pure land and attainment of the 51st stage of enlightenment from which you will never retrogress.

So essentially, in our quest for enlightenment, there are many barriers. However, the first is having devotion to Amida and the Vow, and the second is ridding oneself of all attachments. Once these are taken care of, you will be able to attain enlightenment, so says Nagarjuna. This is extremely difficult, and takes time. However, by following the Easy Practice Nagarjuna originated, it is possible to attain salvation in this lifetime. Just trust in Amida Buddha and his Vow to carry you across the sea of suffering. You too will eventually feel deep gratitude towards Amida Buddha for having saved you from the endless torture of hell when you progress along the White Path.

So in a nutshell, that is what the lines above about Nagarjuna propose. Nagarjuna was prophesied to come along by Sakyamuni Buddha and correct the diluted views about our existence. He urged us to do the “Easy Practice” which we talked about above, and that this will lead to our salvation. He also taught that other ways to the pure land were tiresome, took long periods of time, and were impossible even for many Bodhisattva’s. Finally, he urged us to seek repayment to Amida Buddha for having emancipated us from suffering.

Advertisements

12 Responses

  1. […] here to see the original: Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism No Related Post View the Contact Powered by […]

  2. […] Original post:  Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism […]

  3. […] Originally posted here: Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism […]

  4. […] the original post here:  Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism No Related Post View the Contact Powered by […]

  5. […] See the original post here: Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism […]

  6. […] the original post:  Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism :: Daily Life | Hiragana Blog – Hiragana Times View the Contact Powered by […]

  7. […] See the rest here:  Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism […]

  8. […] The rest is here:  Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism […]

  9. […] Read the original:  Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism […]

  10. […] more here: Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism No Related Post View the Contact Powered by […]

  11. […] original here:  Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism the sixth day : "Brownie" – Catch the spheres in Sri-Lankathe lesson – […]

  12. […] post:  Shoshinge, Part 10 « Notes on Jodo Shinshu Pure Land Buddhism :ボストンレッドソックス:赤い靴下と緑のモンスター: 7/24 ML […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: