This is just sharing an episode in my recent Amitabha chanting.
For a long time, I always wonder if people only pray to Amitabha for speedy rebirth in Western Paradise after death. Do people pray to Amitabha for wealth and riches just like how they would be praying to Jambhala.
Can it be possible to pray for success while practicing pureland recitation.
I believe that when one practice pureland Buddhism, one is constantly reminded of the impermanence of life. So what is the purpose of wanting riches?
Well for a start, a comfortable existence is desirable to me while still alive 🙂
It is with such attitude that I started my recitation and chanting of Amitabha mantra one day. I was a bit lazy to chant Jambhala too.
Like always, I pull my concentration into myself and just focus on the chanting. then the “me” will take a back seat. In that manner, the “artificial” distance of me and others is narrowed. Since there is no me(unenlightened me) and there is no them (the pureland folks) there is no distance….
It is a comfortable chanting experience that I am fond of.
During recitation, I remembered the passage in the Amitabha sutra that says the ground of Amitabha’s pureland is made of gold sand. The jewels and ornament hang from the trees.
As usual, my monkey mind immediately conjured a wonderful mental imagery.
The ground where I was sitting was golden, trees of great beauty sprung up around me. The jewels hanging on the trees swayed gently. Then the jewels floated down and settled around me. New jewels continue to “bloom” in the trees. Soon I was surrounded by all things precious.
With this mental image, there was suddenly contentment and the strong desire for riches turn into a light happiness. So practitioners of Pureland is already surrounded by riches if they know it. Contentment is indeed happiness. I felt empowered and happy too.
From this mental play, I believe that pureland school and chanting Amitabha Buddha is also conducive for a person who desire riches. Besides being aware that life is impermanence, the comfort of knowing how rich the pureland is, somehow is both empowering and soothing to my mind.
On top of that, as I recall the various past masters of Pureland practice, my monkey mind turn up another boost.
In that mental image, it occurred to me that hundreds and thousands of people had successfully been reborn in Amitabha’s pureland. Therefore the pureland is filled with great bodhisattvas. Beside the familiar Bodhisattva like Chenrezig etc, buddhist are being blessed with a huge gathering of Bodhisattva who will always be there for us. That mental assurance gave strength and comfort.
At the end of the chanting session, with the understanding that all is but a mental play. Happiness is just a flip of our mental switch. When this bodhi switch is turned on, it gives us strength and happiness to deal with our daily life. Such is the beauty of spiritual practice. Ok lets have fun in this material world….
Hope you find strength, comfort and happiness in your daily practice too.
Knowing this existence is almost like a dream, temporal and fleeting, we laugh at life and giggle at chance, just like how we used to be; A precious child.
Shinning gold and glittering gems are just ornamental hangings until the world taught us craving.
Returning our mind to a pure childish quality, may we enjoy our present and giggle with mirth & Bodhi quality.