Formula in Buddhism: 12th and 13th Vows, Part 2

"Amida took in the form of the Name

(Namo-Amida-Butsu)" 

The two vows below tells us what Amida is:

"If the men and devas in my country,

my light (space, place) is limited and does not illuminate at least a hundred thousand million nayutas of Buddha-countries,

may I not achieve the Highest Enlightenment."

12th Vow

"If the men and devas in my country,

my life (time) is limited and does not last at least a hundred thousand million nayutas of kalpas,

may I not achieve the Highest Enlightenment."

13th Vow

Nayuta: Unit of number.  10 to the 112th power

Kalpa:  Unit of year.  One kalpa = 4.32 billion years.

Amida, in order to go beyond time and space, took in the form of the Name, Namo-Amida-Butsu.  But why? We see the following 3 reasons in the first 3 phases of "Jusei-Ge":

1. I have made vows, unrivalled in all the world;

    I shall certainly reach the unsurpassed Way.

    If these vows should not be fulfilled,

    May I not attain perfect Enlightenment.

2.  If I should not become a great benefactor,

     In lives to come for immeasurable kalpas

     To save the poor and afflicted everywhere,

     May I not attain perfect Enlightenment. 

3.  When I attain Buddahood,

     My Name shall be heard throughout the 10 directions;

     Should there be any place where it is not heard,

     May I not attain perfect Enlightenment.

In summary of above, in order to fulfill the universal Wisdom & Compassion, Amida takes the way to show the Immeasurable Working to me: First, Amida became the Name; second the Name benefits all sentient beings; third, sentient beings are saved by the Name.

Then, why did Amida become the Name? You will see more details related to the Name in the next Newsletter.

In Gassho,

Fujii