4-11 The Unity of Beings and the Dharma
What is the meaning of “Namo Amida Butsu”? Further, how should we entrust ourselves to Amida to attain birth in the fulfilled land?
First of all, you should entrust yourselves to Amida by carefully discerning the six-character Name, “Na-mo-a-mi-da-butsu.”
The essence of “Namo Amida Butsu” is this: when sentient beings entrust themselves to Amida with the assurance of emancipation in the afterlife, Amida Tathagata fully recognizes this and endows them with the merit of unsurpassed, great benefit. This is what is meant by directing of virtue to sentient beings.
Because it is through Amida’s Dharma that the sentient beings who rely on the Buddha are liberated, we say that “Namo Amida Butsu” represents “the unity of beings and the Dharma.” You should bear in mind that this itself the entrusting heart of Other Power that assures our birth.
Humbly and respectfully.
I wrote this on the 25th day of the 5th month, 6th year of Meio 
南無阿弥陀仏と申すは､ いかなる心にて候ふや｡ しかれば､ なにと弥陀をたのみて報土往生をばとぐべく候ふやらん｡
これを心得べきやうは､ まづ南無阿弥陀仏の六字のすがたをよくよく心得わけて､ 弥陀をばたのむべし｡
そもそも､ 南無阿弥陀仏の体は､ すなはちわれら衆生の後生たすけたまへとたのみまうす心なり｡ すなはちたのむ衆生を阿弥陀如来のよくしろしめして､ すでに無上大利の功徳をあたへましますなり｡ これを衆生に回向したまへるといへるはこの心なり｡
されば弥陀をたのむ機を阿弥陀仏のたすけたまふ法なるがゆゑに､ これを機法一体の南無阿弥陀仏といへるはこのこころなり｡ これすなはちわれらが往生の定まりたる他力の信心なりとは心得べきものなり｡
Index of individual letters:
Letters of Rennyo: The Essence of Shin Buddhism (essay/talk by Rev. Daien T. Haseo)
Letters of Rennyo – On Youtube (presented by Rev. Sugahara Yuki)
Complete Letters of Rennyo translation by the Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai follow this link to their website to download a copy.
To purchase the book ‘Letters of Rennyo’ , Translated by as part of the Hongwanji Shin Buddhism Translation Series, this is the publication information & link:
- Title ：Letters of Rennyo
- Author ：Shin Buddhism Translation Series
- Language ：English
- ISBN ：4-938490-20-X
- pages ：164
Buy from Hongwanji International Center: https://international.hongwanji.or.jp/html/c3b1p1.html
If you would like a digital copy containing more translated letters than listed above (albeit not translated by Hongwanji), you can download a PDF from the Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai (BDK – Amercia) website here: Link: https://bdkamerica.org/product/tannisho-passages-deploring-deviations-of-faith-and-rennyo-shonin-ofumi-the-letters-of-rennyo/
Credits: The text for the Letters of Rennyo as presented on this and subsequent pages was originally shared on the following site : http://www.yamadera.info/seiten/seiten_index.htm
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