I am a devotee of Amitabha Buddha. Amitabha, or Amida, is the Buddha of all acceptance. This is thus an inclusive creed. This web site, La Ville au Roi (Eleusis) has members who follow at least a dozen formally distinct spiritual paths, but we seem to all get on fine together.

Spirituality has innumerable dimensions. The main practice of Amidism is to recite an invocation of the Buddha. It's main philosophy is to view the person as a fallible mortal in receipt of infinite grace. This is really a pretty generic approach.

We can say, then, that Amidism has three pillars. Firstly reverence for the Buddhas as ultimate, spiritual and/or in-this-world exemplars and benefactors, secondly humility of the person as seeker, pilgrim and practitioner caught up in the conditions of the world, and thirdly the practice of calling. This matter of calling is both on the one hand a "please" and a "thank you" to the greater powers and, on the other hand, a sense of being called, called to do good, to live the spiritual life, to explore the path in as authentic a manner as possible, and to be mindful of age-old wisdom.

This is an approach to spirituality that is orientated to peace in the world and authenticity in the heart. It is not about pretending to be good, nor about suppressing what does not fit. Thus it embraces thought, emotion and action in a balanced way and finds expression through arts and ritual as well as love, work and daily life.

Calling can take many forms and over the centuries many specific practices and styles of ritual, reflection, and contemplation, both individual and in gatherings, have developed as aids to the practitioner and the community. This site often carries discussions of such.

The central scripture of Amidism is the Larger Pureland Sutra which is both a legend and a manifesto for the ordinary person on the bodhisattva path. There is also a Smaller Pureland Sutra (the Amida Kyo), the Contemplation Sutra and the Pratyutpanna Samadhi Sutra. However, Amidists respect all Buddhist texts and those of other faiths insofar as they speak of wisdom, compassion and awakening.

Last updated by David Brazier Mar 22.

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Blog Posts

Running a Course in Korea and Elsewhere

Posted by David Brazier on August 3, 2018 at 1:40 2 Comments

I am currently leading courses on Buddhist psychology here in Seoul, Korea, but as I am putting the course onto this site as we go along, members of La Ville au Roi (Eleusis) are also responding so it is a bit as though the course is going on in several countries at the same time which is nice.

Varlam Shalamov

Posted by Geeta Chari on July 16, 2018 at 0:00 1 Comment

From The Paris Review:

For fifteen years the writer Varlam Shalamov was imprisoned in the Gulag for participating in “counter-revolutionary Trotskyist activities.” He endured six of those years enslaved in the gold mines of Kolyma, one of the coldest and most hostile places on earth. While he was awaiting sentencing, one of his short stories was…

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The Buddha, Season 1, Episode 1

Posted by Geeta Chari on June 29, 2018 at 9:21 1 Comment

I have been watching The Buddha on Netflix, and although I came well-prepared to scoff, there is a surprising amount of food for thought from a Pureland perspective. What follows is a review of the Pureland touches in the episode, coloured inevitably by my upbringing in India, although I have now lived in Britain for more than half my life.

The scene opens in the republic of Kapilavastu, depicted as a green and pleasant land, with the Himalayan mountains as a backdrop. (I was…

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Nembutsu Question

Posted by Dayamay Dunsby on April 20, 2018 at 8:22 1 Comment

I found this in a book that I'm reading. It has challenged my current "understanding" of the Nembutsu. I tend to think of the name itself as salvation and the bridge to the Pure Land...

"...Nembutsu is not a means to gain salvation but a reflection of it. Shinran acknowledges there is nembutsu without true entrusting because he lived in an environment where nembutsu was recited for benefits and merit. By itself it cannot produce true entrusting. Nevertheless, they are inseparable as…

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