Our practice is simple
As Pureland Buddhists we say the nembutsu: Namo Amida Bu. This is all that is necessary.
The nembutsu is how we call out to Amida, the Buddha of Infinite Light. We take refuge in the Buddha and we receive the gifts of grace, wisdom and consolation.
Many of us also find it helpful to practice with others whenever we can, and to do informal and formal practice at home.
This helps us remember the Buddha as we go about our daily lives. Here are a few ideas:
• Learn one of the blessings we say before meals as a way of reminding yourself to be grateful for the food you receive.
• Say ‘Namo Amida Bu’ or ‘Namo Amitabha’ out loud or silently during the day when you remember to.
• Carry a mala (Buddhist beads) with you and use them to recite nembutsu.
• Remember the Buddha when walking in nature or at difficult moments.
• Remember to be grateful.
Focused periods of practice help us to deepen our refuge with the Buddha.
Find a space in your home where you can make a small shrine, e.g. the top of a bookshelf or a corner of your bedroom. Here you can place a Buddha statue or an image of a Buddha and maybe a candle, incense, water offering bowls or flowers.
A daily practice can be as simple as lighting an incense stick and bowing to the Buddha. Try not to over-complicate it or feel overwhelmed by all the options.
You might want to start with one of the following or combine two or more together – maybe first thing in the morning or last thing at night. Experiment and find out what suits you.
• Make an offering to the Buddha by lighting incense or by pouring water from a jug into a small bowl on the shrine
• Ten minutes of nembutsu chanting (any from the bottom of the list of audio recordings)
• Ten minutes of silent sitting
• Perform three prostrations with or without the prostrations chant
Enjoy your daily practice. Namo Amitabha.
Innumerable are sentient beings: we vow to save them all
Innumerable are deluded passions: we vow to transform them all
Immeasurable are the Dharma teachings: we vow to master them all
Infinite is the Buddha’s way: we vow to fulfil it completely
For refuge I go to the Buddha, the one who shows me the way in this life
For refuge I go to the Dharma, the way of understanding and love
For refuge I go to the sangha, the community that lives in harmony and awareness
Blessing by Amitabha’s light
May I care for all living things
and the holy Earth.
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