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  • Writer's pictureAMTB NSW

The Amitabha Sutra - Breezes Stir the Trees

In this Buddha-land, there is a slight breeze that stirs the rows of jewel trees and jewel netting, so that they emit subtle wondrous sounds, like hundreds and thousands of melodies playing all at once. All those who hear these sounds spontaneously become mindful of the Buddha, mindful of the Dharma, and mindful of the Sangha.

In the previous passage, the sutra spoke of sentient beings singing “the sounds of the Dharma.” In this passage, it tells how even non-sentient beings can teach. Sakyamuni Buddha explained that the breezes rustling the trees produce musical sounds, which, in resonance with the beings’ calm, pure minds, become the most beautiful melodies. All together, the instruments, thousands and thousands of them, sound like they are playing

a wondrous symphony.

All the beings who listen to the music naturally “become mindful of the Buddha, mindful of the Dharma, and mindful of the Sangha.” In other words, the beings give rise to enlightenment, proper understanding, and purity of mind, respectively. How different this is

from our world where people remain mired in delusion, misunderstanding, and impure thoughts. There is no enlightenment, no proper understanding, no purity of mind. Thus, unlike the beings in the Pure Land, our minds can produce winds so fierce that they drive those

hearing them to feel terrified.

From all this, we can see that even the environment in the Western Pure Land encourages the beings there to improve their bodhi mind. In our world called Endurance, by contrast, the environment is filled with constant distractions that only intensify our greed, anger, and ignorance.

As ordinary people, we are easily affected by our surroundings, so we should choose the best environment for our practice. This is why Sakyamuni Buddha encouraged us to strive to be born in the Pure Land.

— Chapter 22, "Pure Mind, Compassionate Heart: Lessons from the Amitabha Sutra", Venerable Wuling

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