Commentary on
the Ten Bodhisattva Stages

Volume Five

Composed by Nāgārjuna, the Sage and
Translated by the Later Ch’in Dynasty
*Tripiṭaka Master *Kumārajīva of Kucha

Chapter Nine: *Easy Practice

[1] ^Question: The prerequisites for a *bodhisattva’s entry into the *stage of nonretrogression have been explained in the *preceding chapter. ^In order to attain the stage of nonretrogression, however, one is required to perform many *difficult practices over a long period of time. ^Even then the bodhisattva may fall into the state of *sravaka or that of *pratyekabuddha. If so, it would be a great loss, ^as I explain in *Aid to Enlightenment:

^“If one falls into the state of sravaka or pratyekabuddha,

It should be called the death of a bodhisattva, for one loses all benefits.

^Even if one were to fall into hell, no such fear would arise,

But falling into the state of these *two vehicles should be greatly feared.

^Even if one were to fall into hell, one would eventually be able to attain Buddhahood.

But if a bodhisattva falls into the state of these two vehicles, his path to Buddhahood will ultimately be blocked.

^The Buddha himself expounds in *a sutra that

A person greedily clinging to life will greatly fear being decapitated.

^Likewise with the bodhisattva.

With regard to the state of sravaka or pratyekabuddha, the bodhisattva should have great fear.”

^Therefore, if there is a path of *easy practice in the teachings of the Buddhas through which one can quickly attain the stage of nonretrogression, please explain it to us.

[2] ^Answer: Those are the words of a weak and inferior person who lacks great aspiration, and not those of a man with a strong and indomitable will. ^The reason is that if you make an aspiration for supreme perfect enlightenment and yet cannot reach the stage of nonretrogression, you should stake your life unstintingly on the Way, and exert yourself urgently day and night as if your head were on fire, ^as I state in Aid to Enlightenment.

^A bodhisattva who has yet to reach the stage of nonretrogression

Should always exert himself urgently as if his head were on fire,

^And strive diligently on the Way as if bearing a heavy burden on his shoulders.

In seeking enlightenment, the bodhisattva should always strive diligently on the Way,
And never give rise to an indolent mind.

^Even one who seeks the enlightenment of the sravaka or pratyekabuddha,

Though acting only for one’s own benefit, should always strive diligently on the Way.

^How much more so in the case of a bodhisattva who seeks to carry himself and others to the shore of enlightenment!

One should, thus, strive a hundred thousand million times more diligently than a practicer of the two vehicles.

^For the *Mahayana practicers, the Buddha said as follows, “To make an aspiration for the enlightenment of Buddha is harder than lifting the *triple-thousand great thousand worlds”. ^The stage of nonretrogression is extremely difficult to attain and it would take a long time to achieve. ^If you insist on knowing about a path of easy practice to quickly attain the stage of nonretrogression, your request is that of a weak and inferior person, and not that of a great man with a strong will. ^However, if you insist on asking about such a means, I will present it to you.

[3] ^In the Buddha’s teaching there are countless gates. ^Just as journeying overland is full of hardship, while sailing on board a boat is pleasant, there are difficult and easy among the paths of this world. ^So it is with the paths of bodhisattvas. Some engage in rigorous practice and endeavor, while others quickly reach the stage of nonretrogression through the easy practice of entrusting as the means for attaining it.

[4] ^Here I present the following verses:

^The Buddha of Auspicious Virtue of the east,
the Buddha of Sandalwood Virtue of the south,

The Buddha of Infinite Brightness of the west,
the Buddha of Ensign Virtue of the north,

^The Buddha of Sorrowless Virtue of the southeast,
the Buddha of Jewel Giver of the southwest,

The Buddha of Flower Virtue of the northwest,
the Buddha of Practice of the *Three Vehicles of the northeast,

^The Buddha of Bright Virtue of the nadir, and
the Buddha of Extensive Virtues of the zenith:

Such World-honored Ones are now present in the ten quarters.

^If one desires to attain the stage of nonretrogression quickly,

One should, with a *heart of reverence,
Call their names, *holding steadfast to them.

[5] ^If bodhisattvas wish to attain the stage of nonretrogression while in their present existence and realize the supreme, perfect enlightenment, they should think on the Buddhas in the ten quarters and call their names. ^It is as expounded in the ‘Chapter on Nonretrogression’ of the *Sutra on the Questions of the Lad Ratnacandra:

^“The Buddha said to Ratnacandra, ‘In the eastern quarter, after passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable and uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, ^there is a world called Sorrowless. ^Its ground is flat and made of the *seven kinds of jewels. It is partitioned with purple-gold cords, and adorned with rows of jeweled trees. ^There is no hell nor are there realms of animals, hungry ghosts, or asuras, nor are there any other places of affliction. ^The world is pure and undefiled, having no sand, pebbles, or rubble; nor are there mountains, hills, deep caves, or gorges. Flowers rain constantly from the sky, spreading all over the ground.

^“At the present time there lives a Buddha called Auspicious Virtue, the *Tathagata, Arhat, Perfectly Enlightened One, One Possessed of Perfect Knowledge and Practice, Well-gone, One Having Good Knowledge of the World, Unsurpassed One, Tamer of People, Teacher of Devas and Humans, Buddha, and World-honored One. ^A host of great bodhisattvas surround and worship him. ^His physical features are glorious like a *great blazing mountain of gold, or like a great mass of precious treasures. ^For all the assembly he is extensively expounding the right Dharma.

^“Since he is well-versed, his words are meaningful from beginning to end, and not intermingled with any teachings other than the Mahayana. His expositions are complete, pure, and real, lacking nothing. What is meant by “lacking nothing”? His expositions are not lacking such notions as the four elements of *earth, water, fire, and wind, or the *three worlds of desire, form, and formlessness, or the *five aggregates of form, perception, conception, volition, and consciousness.

^“O Ratnacandra, sixty *kotis of *kalpas have passed since this Buddha attained enlightenment. In view of the fact that there is no distinction of day and night in his Buddha-land, because of this, his life is here being measured only in terms of the days, months, and years as calculated in this world of *Jambudvīpa. ^The light of this Buddha always illumines the whole world. ^Through a single preaching, he enables immeasurable, unlimited, and uncountable kotis of people to attain *insight into the nonorigination of all existence. In addition, he leads twice as many people to attain the *first, second, and third dharma-insights.

^“O Ratnacandra, through the power of the *original vow of the Buddha, sentient beings in other worlds who accumulated various roots of good under the past Buddhas will attain insight into the nonorigination of all existence when they are touched by the light of this Buddha.

^“O Ratnacandra, if good people, whether men or women, hear the name of this Buddha, and believe and accept it, they will not retrogress from their attainment of the highest, perfect enlightenment’.”*

^The above statement also applies to the nine other Buddhas. ^Now I will explain the names of those Buddhas and their lands. ^The name ‘Auspicious Virtue’ represents the genuine virtue of this Buddha and the sole existence of peace and happiness in his land. These are unlike the good and virtue of devas or dragon-gods that at times bewilder and confuse sentient beings.

^There is in the south, passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable and uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, a Buddha-world named Joy. The Buddha is called Sandalwood Virtue and is expounding the Dharma at this moment. The name of this Buddha is refreshing like the perfume of sandalwood for it reaches far afield, spreading its fragrance everywhere. It removes the burning fever of the *three poisons of sentient beings, enabling them to obtain the cool of serenity.

^There is in the west, passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable and uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, a Buddha-world named Goodness. The Buddha is called Infinite Brightness and is expounding the Dharma at this moment. The light from this Buddha’s body and his wisdom emanate far into the infinite distance.

^There is in the north, passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable and uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, a Buddha-world named Immovable. The Buddha is called Ensign Virtue and is expounding the Dharma at this moment. The merit and virtue of this Buddha are lofty and outstanding like a banner.

^There is in the southeast, passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable and uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, a Buddha-world named Moonlight. The Buddha is called Sorrowless Virtue and is expounding the Dharma at this moment. The divine virtue of this Buddha eradicates the sorrow and grief of all humans and devas.

^There is in the southwest, passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable an uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, a Buddha-world named Assembled Phases. The Buddha is called Jewel Giver and is expounding the Dharma at this moment. This Buddha constantly endows all sentient beings with the undefiled treasures of the *five faculties, the *five powers, the *seven factors for awakening, and the *eightfold path.

^There is in the northwest, passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable and uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, a Buddha-world named Assembled Tones. The Buddha is called Flower Virtue and is expounding the Dharma at this moment. His physical appearance is like a wonderful flower, and his virtue is unlimited.

^There is in the northeast, passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable an uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, a Buddha-world named Peace and Tranquility. The Buddha is called Practice of the Three Vehicles and is expounding the Dharma at this moment, and is always setting forth the practices for sravakas, pratyekabuddas, and bodhisattvas. Someone said that the Buddha is called Practice of the Three Vehicles because he encourages the *upper, middle, and lower grades of practicers to diligently pursue the Way.

^There is in the nadir, passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable and uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, a Buddha-world named Vastness. The Buddha is called Bright Virtue and is expounding the Dharma at this moment. “Bright” refers to the Buddha’s physical brilliance, his brilliant wisdom, and the radiant light of the jeweled trees of his land. These three kinds of brilliance constantly illuminate this world.

^There is in the zenith, passing through Buddha-lands as innumerable and uncountable as the sands of the Ganges, a Buddha-world named Assembled Moons. The Buddha is called Extensive Virtues and is expounding the Dharma at this moment. He is called “Extensive Virtues” because of the unlimited merit and virtue of his disciples.

^These are the Buddhas of the ten quarters, starting from Auspicious Virtue and ending with Extensive Virtues. If one calls the names of these Buddhas *sigle-heartedly, one will not retrogress from attaining the highest, perfect enlightenment.

[6] ^Thus I present the following verses:

^If there are those who can hear the exposition of the names of these Buddhas,

Then they will acquire innumerable merits as the Buddha explained to Ratnacandra.

^I worship these Buddhas who are at present dwelling in the ten quarters.

Those who call their names will attain the stage of nonretrogression.

^There is in the east a world named Free of Sorrow, and the Buddha there is called Auspicious Virtue,

Whose physical features are glorious like the *Gold Mountain, and whose name can be heard boundlessly.

^If there are any who hear his name, they will then attain the stage of nonretrogression.

So I worship him by placing my hands together with a wish that all my sorrows and afflictions be eradicated.

^There is in the south a world named Joy, and the Buddha there is called Sandalwood Virtue,

Whose countenance is serene like the full moon, and whose radiance is immeasurable.

^He eliminates the fever and agony of sentient beings caused by the three poisons.

Those who hear his name will attain the stage of nonretrogression, and so I bow my head and worship him.

^There is in the west a world named Good, and the Buddha there is called Immeasurable Brightness,

Whose bodily radiance and wisdom are luminous, shining everywhere without limit.

^Those who hear his name will then attain the stage of nonretrogression.

Thus I bow my head and worship him with a wish that the cycle of birth-and-death be severed forever.

^There is in the north a world named Immovable, and the Buddha there is called Ensign Virtue,

Whose body is possessed of various excellent marks which serve as his adornments.

^He crushes the treacherous hordes of *maras, thus benefiting all humans and devas.

Those who hear his name will attain the stage of nonretrogression, and so I bow my head and worship him.

^There is in the southeast a world named Moonlight, and the Buddha there is called Free of Sorrow.

His light is likened to that of the sun or the moon, and when one encounters it, one’s evil passions are extinguished.

^He always expounds the Dharma to people, removing both their physical and mental sufferings.

All the Buddhas in the ten quarters praise him, and so I bow my head and worship him.

^There is in the southwest a world named Assembled Phases, and the Buddha there is called Jewel Giver.

He constantly endows all people equally with numerous *treasures of the Dharma.

^In reverence, all devas bow their heads to him, their jeweled crowns touching his feet.

So I worship the Jewel Giver Buddha, prostrating my whole body.

^There is in the northwest a world named Assembled Tones, and the Buddha there is called Flower Virtue.

In his world there are various kinds of jeweled threes which produce exquisite sounds of the Dharma.

^He always adorns sentient beings with the flowers of the seven factors for awakening.

The *white tuft of hair on his brow is like the moon, and so I bow my head and worship him.

^There is in the northeast a world named Peace and Tranquility that is made up of all kinds of treasures.

The Buddha there is called Practice of the Three Vehicles, whose body is decorated with innumerable adornments.

^The light of his wisdom is boundless, completely dispelling the darkness of ignorance.

The sentient beings there have no sorrows or afflictions, and so I bow my head and worship him.

^There is in the zenith a world named Moons, adorned with many kinds of treasures.

The sravakas and bodhisattvas of great virtue there are uncountable.

^As the lion among those sages, the Buddha there is called Extensive Virtues.

He is feared by all maras, and so I bow my head and worship him.

^There is in the nadir a Buddha-world named Vastness, and the Buddha there is called Bright Virtue.

His physical appearance is wondrous and surpasses a *mountain of Jambūnada gold.

^With the sunlight of his wisdom, he constantly causes flowers of the roots of good bloom.

His jeweled land is extremely vast, and so I bow my head and worship him from afar.

^Innumerable kalpas ago there lived a Buddha whose name was Ocean Virtue.

Guided by this Buddha, all the present Buddhas have made the following vows:

^“May my life be immeasurable, my light shine limitlessly, and my land be exceedingly pure.

May those who hear my name definitely become enlightened”.

^These Buddhas, now present in the ten quarters, are possessed of the *ten powers,

And so I bow my head and worship these most honored ones among humans and devas.

[7] ^Question: I understand that if we hear only the names of these ten Buddhas and *hold steadfast to them in mind, we will not retrogress from attaining the highest, perfect enlightenment. Are there any other Buddhas or bodhisattvas whose names enable us to attain the stage of nonretrogression?

[8] ^Answer: If you say the names of the Buddhas such as Amida, as well as those of the great bodhisattvas, while holding them single-heartedly in mind, you will also attain the stage of nonretrogression. There are various Buddhas, including Amida, whom you should reverently worship and whose names you should say.

[9] ^I will now state each of their names: 1the Buddha *Immeasurable Life, ^2the Buddha *World Sovereign King, 3the Buddha Lion Will, 4the Buddha Dharma Will, 5the Buddha Brahma Insignia, 6the Buddha World Insignia, 7the Buddha World Wonder, 8the Buddha Compassion, 9the Buddha World King, 10the Buddha King of Humans, ^11the Buddha Moon Virtue, 12the Buddha Jewel Virtue, 13the Buddha Insignia Virtue, 14the Buddha Great Insignia, 15the Buddha Pearl Canopy, 16the Buddha Lion’s Mane, 17the Buddha Dispeller of Ignorance, 18the Buddha Wisdom Flower, 19the Buddha Tamālapattra Sandalwood Fragrance, 20the Buddha Possessor of Great Virtue, ^21the Buddha Rain of Seven Jewels, 22the Buddha Transcendent Hero, 23the Buddha Free of Anger and Enmity, 24the Buddha Great Adornment, 25the Buddha Formlessness, 26the Buddha Jewel Storehouse, 27the Buddha Virtue Peak, 28the Buddha Tagara Fragrance, 29the Buddha Sandalwood Fragrance, 30the Buddha Lotus Flower Fragrance, ^31the Buddha Adorned Way, 32the Buddha Dragon Canopy, 33the Buddha Flower Rain, 34the Buddha Scattered Flowers, 35the Buddha Flower Light, 36the Buddha Sound of the Sun, 37the Buddha Outshining the Sun and Moon, 38the Buddha Lapis Lazuli Storehouse, 39the Buddha Brahmā Sound, 40the Buddha Pure Brilliance, ^41the Buddha Gold Storehouse, 42the Buddha Sumeru Peak, 43the Buddha Mountain King, 44the Buddha Master of Sound, 45the Buddha Pure Eye, 46the Buddha moon Brilliance, 47the Buddha Resembling Mount Sumeru, 48the Buddha Sun and Moon, 49the Buddha Having Great Assembly, 50the Buddha Flower Born, ^51the Buddha Expounding with the Voice of Brahmā, 52the Buddha World Lord, 53the Buddha Lion Practice, 54the Buddha Lion Roar of the Wondrous Dharma Heart, 55the Buddha Coral-Colored Pearl Canopy, 56the Buddha Dispeller of the Darkness of Ignorance, 57the Buddha Moon on the Water, 58the Buddha Wreath of Flower, 59the Buddha Awakening of Wisdom, 60the Buddha Possessing Various Treasures, ^61the Buddha Bodhi, 62the Buddha Flower Transcendence, 63the Buddha Brilliance of True Lapis Lazuli, 64the Buddha Brilliance Obscuring the Sun, 65the Buddha Possessor of Great Virtue, 66the Buddha Having True Wisdom, 67the Buddha Heroic Valor, 68the Buddha Free of Deceit, 69the Buddha Removing Evil Roots, 70the Buddha Great Fragrance, ^71the Buddha Reflection of Enlightenment, 72the Buddha Light on the Water, 73the Buddha Wisdom Sporting in the Ocean and Clouds, 74the Buddha Virtue Peak Flower, 75the Buddha Flower Adornment, 76the Buddha Sound of the Sun, 77the Buddha Moon Victor, 78the Buddha Lapis Lazuli, 79the Buddha Brahmā Voice, 80the Buddha Radiant Light, ^81the Buddha Gold Storehouse, 82the Buddha Sumeru Peak, 83the Buddha Mountain Peak, 84the Buddha King of Sound, 85the Buddha Dragon Subduer, 86the Buddha Free of Defilement, 87the Buddha Pure Visage, 88the Buddha Moon Visage, 89the Buddha Sumeru-like, 90the Buddha Sandalwood Fragrance, ^91the Buddha Majestic Power, 92the Buddha *Torch Lighter, 93the Buddha Hard-won Victory, 94the Buddha Jewel Virtue, 95the Buddha Sound of Joy, 96the Buddha Radiant Light, 97the Buddha Dragon Subduer, 98the Buddha Undefiled Brilliance, 99the Buddha Lion, 100the Buddha King of Kings, ^101the Buddha Powerful Victor, 102the Buddha *Flower Tooth, 103the Buddha Fearless Brilliance, 104the Buddha Fragrant Peak, 105the Buddha *Universal Wisdom, 106the Buddha Universal Flower, and 107the Buddha Treasure Insignia.

^These Buddha-tathagatas dwell at present in the worlds of purity in the ten quarters. All of you should say their names and be *mindful of them.

[10] ^The *Primal Vow of Amida Buddha is, “If one takes refuge in me, while being mindful of me and saying my name, one immediately enters the *stage of the definitely settled, and will attain the highest, perfect enlightenment”. ^Therefore, one should always be mindful of the Buddha.

[11] ^I will praise the Buddha in verse.

^O Amida Buddha, the wisdom of immeasurable light,
Whose body is like *Pure Gold Mountain!

I now worship you in body, speech, and mind.
By placing my hands together and bowing my head.

^Your wondrous golden light
Universally reaches every world,

Strengthening your light according to each object,
And so I bow my head in worship.

^When, at the end of one’s life,
One attains birth in that land,

One will immediately acquire innumerable virtues,
And so I take refuge in Amida Buddha.

^When one is mindful of
The Buddha’s infinite power and majestic virtue,

One immediately enters the stage of the definitely settled.
And so I am always mindful of Amida Buddha.

^When one’s life comes to an end in that land,
Even if one were to undergo various sufferings,

One would not fall into the evil realm of hell,
And so I take refuge in and worship Amida Buddha.

^Once born in that land,
One will never again fall into the *three evil realms

Or the *realm of asuras,
And so I now take refuge in and worship Amida Buddha.

^The humans and devas there, all alike in physical features,
Are as magnificent as the summit of Gold Mountain.

That land is the place where all *superior ones take refuge.
And so I bow my head and worship Amida Buddha.

^When one is born in that land,
One possesses the *divine eyes and ears

To penetrate freely throughout the ten quarters,
And so I worship Amida Buddha, the most honored one among sages.

^All sentient beings in that land possess *divine feet,
The *power to see into the minds of others,

And the *wisdom to remember all former lives,
And so I take refuge in and worship Amida Buddha.

^When one is born in that land,
One is freed of attachment to self and possessions,

And does not give rise to any discrimination between self and others,
And so I bow my head and worship Amida Buddha.

^Having transcended the prison of the three worlds,
One has *eyes like lotus petals.

There are innumerable such sravakas in that land,
And so I bow my head and worship Amida Buddha.

^All the sentient beings in that land
Are gentle and tender in nature.

And effortlessly perform the *ten good acts,
And so I bow my head to Amida Buddha, the king of sages.

^Such beings generating *pure brightness out of these good acts
Are immeasurable and unlimited in number.

Amida is the most exalted one among humans and devas.
And so I take refuge in Amida Buddha.

^If one aspires to attain Buddhahood
And thinks on Amida in one’s mind,

The Buddha will then appear before one,
And so I take refuge in Amida Buddha.

^Through the power of the Buddha’s Primal Vow,
The bodhisattvas in the ten quarters

Come to Amida’s land to make offerings and listen to the Dharma,
And so I bow my head to Amida Buddha.

^The bodhisattvas of that land all possess
The *auspicious characteristics and marks,

Which spontaneously adorn their bodies,
And so I now take refuge in and worship Amida Buddha.

^All the great bodhisattvas in that land
Make offerings three times each day

To every Buddha in the ten quarters,
And so I bow my head and worship Amida Buddha.

^If one doubts the Buddha’s power while planting roots of good,
*The lotus flower in which one is born will not open;

For one whose entrusting heart is pure, however,
The flower opens and then one sees the Buddha.

^The Buddhas of the present in the ten quarters,
Each relating various *ways and means,

Praise the virtue of that Buddha,
And so I now take refuge in and worship Amida Buddha.

^That land is most splendidly adorned,
Surpassing all the palaces of devas.

Amida’s virtue is extremely deep and vast,
And so I bow to the feet of Amida Buddha.

^His soles have the *mark of the thousand-spoked wheel
And are soft and tinged with *lotus color.

Anyone who sees it rejoices,
And so I bow my head to the feet of Amida Buddha.

^The light emitted from the white tuft of hair on his brow
Is pure and clear like that of the full moon,

And enhances the light and color of his complexion,
And so I bow my head to the feet of Amida Buddha.

^When he was seeking the way to enlightenment,
He achieved many rare and wonderful accomplishments,

As stated in various sutras,
And so I bow my head and worship Amida Buddha.

^When the Buddha is preaching the Dharma,
All the roots of karmic evil are eliminated.

His expositions are full of beautiful and beneficial words,
And so I now bow my head and worship Amida Buddha.

^By preaching in such beautiful words,
He cures the disease of people’s attachment to pleasure,

Thus saving them in the past and present,
And so I bow my head and worship Amida Buddha.

^As the most honored one among humans and devas,
All devas bow their heads in worship

With their seven-jeweled crowns touching his feet,
And so I take refuge in Amida Buddha.

^All the wise sages,
As well as the multitudes of humans and devas,

Take refuge in him together,
And so I too worship Amida Buddha.

^Riding aboard the ship of the eightfold path,
He ferries us across the ocean difficult to cross;

Having crossed it himself, he now carries us across
And so I worship Amida Buddha, the one whose power is unrestricted.

^Even if all the Buddhas were to praise Amida’s virtues
For innumerable kalpas,

They would be unable to do so fully,
And so I take refuge in Amida Buddha, the one of purity.

^Now, in this way, I extol
Amida’s immeasurable virtues;

Through the merit of this praise,
May the Buddha constantly think of me.

^With all the good and virtues, whether great or small,
That I acquired in my present and previous lives,

May I be in the presence of Amida Buddha
And my heart be constantly pure.

^With the most wondrous merit I have acquired
Through praising Amida’s virtues,

May all sentient beings
Be endowed with the same merit as I have been.

[12] ^You should also think on the Buddha *1Vipaśyin, the Buddha 2Śikhin, the Buddha 3Viśvabhū, the Buddha 4Krukucchanda, theBuddha 5Kanakamuni, the Buddha 6Kāśyapa, the Buddha 7Śākyamuni, and the Buddha 8Maitreya who will appear in the future. You should contemplate and worship all of them. I will praise the Buddhas in verse.

^The World-honored One, Vipaśyin,
Under the *bodhi-tree called Aśoka,

Realized the all-knowing wisdom,
Thus attaining many wondrous virtues.

^Having contemplated the world as it truly is,
He is emancipated in mind.

Now with my whole body
I take refuge in the supremely-honored one.

^Buddha Śikhin, the World-honored One,
Sitting under the bodhi-tree called Puṇḍarīka,

Attained enlightenment.

^His physical glory is incomparable,
Like the Purple Gold Mountain ablaze with light.

Now I myself take refute in him,
The supremely-honored one in the three worlds.

^The World-honored One, Viśvabhū,
Sitting under the bodhi-tree called Śāla,

Effortlessly attained the realization of
Wondrous all-knowing wisdom.

^Among all humans and devas,
He is the greatest, without peer.

Therefore I take refuge in him,
The most honored one of all.

^The great Buddha, Krakucchanda,
Attained annuttara-samyak-saṃbodhi,

The highest, perfect enlightenment,
Under the bodhi-tree called Śrīṣa.

^Perfecting the great wisdom,
He was liberated forever from birth-and-death.

Therefore I take refuge in and worship him,
The supreme and incomparable one.

^The great sage and most honored one, Kanakamuni,

Seated under the bodhi-tree called Uḍumbara,
Fulfilled the way and attained enlightenment,

^Thoroughly realizing that all existence
Is immeasurable and boundless.

Therefore I take refuge in him,
The supreme and unsurpassed one.

^Buddha Kāśyapa, World-honored One,
Whose eyes are like a pair of lotus petals,

Fulfilled the way and attained enlightenment
Under the bodhi-tree called Nigrodha.

^Having no fear in the three worlds,
His tread is like that of the king of elephants.

Now I myself take refuge in and bow my head
To the one of boundless virtue.

^Buddha Śākyamuni,
Under the bodhi-tree called Aśvattha,

Defeated the maras, his bitter enemies,
And attained the highest, perfect enlightenment.

^His countenance is like a full moon,
Pure and without flaw or stain.

Now I bow my head and worship him,
The most courageous one.

^The future Buddha, Maitreya,
Sitting under the bodhi-tree called Nāga,

Will realize the great universal mind
And spontaneously attain Buddhahood.

^His merit is indestructible
And nothing can surpass it.

Therefore I myself take refuge in him,
The peerless king of the wondrous Dharma.

[13] ^There are also the Buddhas: the Buddha 1Supreme Virtue, the Buddha 2Universal Brilliance, the Buddha 3Conqueror of Enemies, the Buddha 4-1King Insignia, the Buddha 4-2Insignia King, the Buddha 5King of immeasurable Virtue and Brightness with Unrestricted Power, the Buddha 6Unhindered Medicine King, the Buddha 7Treasure Pilgrimage, the Buddha 8-1Jewel Flower, the Buddha 8-2Settled Abode, and the Buddha 8-3King of Mountains. You should contemplate, revere, and worship them as well. I will praise these Buddhas in verse.

^In the world called Unsurpassable,
There is a Buddha named Supreme Virtue.

I now bow my head and worship him,
As well as the treasures of his Dharma and Sangha.

^In the world called Freely Rejoicing,
There is a Buddha named Universal Brilliance.

I now myself take refute in him,
As well as the treasures of his Dharma and Sangha.

^In the world called Universal Wisdom,
There is a Buddha named Conqueror of Enemies.

I now take refuge in him,
As well as the treasures of his Dharma and Sangha.

^In the world called Collection of Goodness and Purity,
There is a Buddha named Royal Banner Insignia.

I now bow my head and worship him,
As well as the treasures of his Dharma and Sangha.

^In the world called Collection of the Undefiled,
There is a Buddha named Brilliance of Immeasurable Virtue,

Whose power is unrestricted throughout the ten quarters,
And so I bow my head to him in worship.

^In the world called Free of Deceit,
There is a Buddha named *Unimpeded Medicine King,

Bowing my head, I worship him,
As well as the treasures of his Dharma and Sangha.

^In the world called Collection of Gold,
There is a Buddha named Treasure of Walking.

Bowing my head, I worship him,
As well as the treasures of his Dharma and Sangha.

^In the world called Beautiful Sound,
There is a Buddha named *Jewel Flower, Settled Abode, and King of Mountains.

Bowing my head, I worship him,
As well as the treasures of his Dharma and Sangha.

^All of these Tathagatas
Dwell in the worlds of the east.

Now I praise them in reverence
And worship and take refuge in them.

^All wish is that these Tathagatas,
Out of their deep benevolence and compassion,

Would appear before me
So that I may gaze upon them all.

[14] ^Next, you should be mindful of, revere, and worship all the Buddhas of the past, present, and future. I will praise them in verse.

^All the Buddhas of the past
Defeated the hordes of treacherous maras,

And, with the power of their great wisdom,
Widely benefited sentient beings.

^At the time of each of these Buddhas,
All beings made offerings to them wholeheartedly,

And with a heart of reverence praised them.
Therefore I bow my head and worship them.

^The incalculable number of Buddhas
Dwelling at present in the ten quarters

Surpasses that of the sands of the Ganges.
So innumerable and uncountable!

^Out of benevolence and compassion for all beings,
They constantly turn the *Wheel of the wondrous Dharma.

Therefore, with a heart of reverence,
I take refuge in and bow my head to them.

^All the Buddhas of the future
Will have bodies splendid like Gold Mountain.

Their light will shine boundlessly,
And they will adorn themselves with *numerous signs.

^Appearing in the worlds and emancipating sentient beings,
They will enter nirvana.

To all these World-honored Ones
I now bow my head in worship.

[15] ^Next, you should be mindful of all the great bodhisattvas. ^1The Bodhisattva Good Will, 2the Bodhisattva Good Eye, 3the Bodhisattva Listening to the Moon, 4the Bodhisattva King Śivi, 5the Bodhisattva All-victorious, 6the Bodhisattva Knowing the Great Earth, 7the Bodhisattva Great Medicine, 8the Bodhisattva Dovecote, 9the Bodhisattva Araṇemin, 10the Bodhisattva Peak-born King, ^11the Bodhisattva Joyful Sight, 12the Bodhisattva Uttara, 13the Bodhisattva Sarvadāna, 14the Bodhisattva Long-lived King, 15the Bodhisattva Kṣāntivādin, 16the Bodhisattva Vailāma, 17the Bodhisattva Śyāma, 18the Bodhisattva Moon Canopy, 19the Bodhisattva Brilliant Leader, 20the Bodhisattva Dharma Leader, ^21the Bodhisattva Accomplishing Benefit, 22the Bodhisattva Maitreya. ^In addition, 23the Bodhisattva Diamond Storehouse, 24the Bodhisattva Diamond Leader, 25the Bodhisattva Immaculate Storehouse, 26the Bodhisattva Immaculate Renown, 27the Bodhisattva Free of Doubt, 28the Bodhisattva Immaculate Virtue, 29the Bodhisattva Net of Brilliance, 30the Bodhisattva Immeasurable Brilliance, ^31the Bodhisattva Great Brilliance, 32the Bodhisattva Inexhaustible Will, 33the Bodhisattva King of Will, 34the Bodhisattva Boundless Will, 35the Bodhisattva Sound of the Sun, 36the Bodhisattva Sound of the Moon, 37the Bodhisattva Sound of Beauty, 38the Bodhisattva Sound of Beautiful Voice, 39the Bodhisattva Sound of Great Voice, 40the Bodhisattva Steadfast Effort, ^41the Bodhisattva Constant Steadfastness, 42the Bodhisattva Steady Rising, 43the Bodhisattva King of Adornment, 44the Bodhisattva Constant Sorrow, 45the Bodhisattva Never-disparaging, 46the Bodhisattva Dharma Superior, 47the Bodhisattva Dharma Will, 48the Bodhisattva Dharma Joy, 49the Bodhisattva Dharma Leader, 50the Bodhisattva Dharma Storage, ^51the Bodhisattva Aspiring Diligence, 52the Bodhisattva Wisdom, 53the Bodhisattva Pure Majestic Virtue, 54the Bodhisattva Nārāyaṇa, 55the Bodhisattva Good Thinking, 56the Bodhisattva Dharma Thinking, 57the Bodhisattva Bhadrapāla, 58the Bodhisattva Dharma Augmenting, 59the Bodhisattva Noble Virtue, 60the Bodhisattva Lion’s Gait, ^61the Bodhisattva Root of Joy, 62the Bodhisattva Supreme Jewel Moon, 63the Bodhisattva Unerring Virtue, 64the Bodhisattva Dragon Virtue, 65the Bodhisattva Mañjuśrī, 66the Bodhisattva Wonderful Sound, 67the Bodhisattva Cloud Sound, 68the Bodhisattva Victorious Will, 69the Bodhisattva Shining Brilliance, 70the Bodhisattva Heroic Assembly, ^71the Bodhisattva Victorious Assembly, 72the Bodhisattva Majestic Demeanor, 73the Bodhisattva Lion’s Will, 74the Bodhisattva Superior Intention, 75the Bodhisattva Excellent Intention, 76the Bodhisattva Augmented Intention, 77the Bodhisattva Jewel Brilliance, 78the Bodhisattva Wisdom Peak, 79the Bodhisattva Preaching Peak, 80the Bodhisattva Possessor of Virtue, ^81the Bodhisattva Freely World-observing King, 82the Bodhisattva Freely Dharani-exercising, 83the Bodhisattva Great Freely Reigning King, 84the Bodhisattva Sorrowless Virtue, 85the Bodhisattva Unerring View, 86the Bodhisattva Freed of Evil Courses, 87the Bodhisattva All Heroic Bravery, 88the Bodhisattva Dispelling Darkness, 89the Bodhisattva Jewel of Virtue, 90the Bodhisattva Flower of Majestic Virtue, ^91the Bodhisattva Golden Garland Brilliant Virtue, 92the Bodhisattva Eliminating the Veil of Hindrances, 93the Bodhisattva Mind Without Hindrances, 94the Bodhisattva Purifying All Practices, 95the Bodhisattva Equal View, 96the Bodhisattva Unequal View, 97the Bodhisattva Sporting in Samadhi, 98the Bodhisattva Freely Exercising Dharma, 99the Bodhisattva Dharma Insignia, 100the Bodhisattva Brilliant Adornment, ^101the Bodhisattva Great Adornment, 102the Bodhisattva Jewel Peak, 103the Bodhisattva Jewel Mudrā, 104the Bodhisattva Constantly Raised Hand, 105the Bodhisattva Constantly Lowered Hand, 106the Bodhisattva Constant Austerity, 107the Bodhisattva Constant Joy, 108the Bodhisattva King of Joy, 109the Bodhisattva Attaining the Voice of Eloquence, 110the Bodhisattva Thunder in the Sky, ^111the Bodhisattva Holding the Jewel Torch, 112the Bodhisattva Heroic Charity, 113the Bodhisattva Indra’s Net, 114the Bodhisattva Steed of Light, 115the Bodhisattva Emptiness Free of Hindrance, 116the Bodhisattva Jewel Brilliance, 117the Bodhisattva King of Devas, 118the Bodhisattva Defeater of Maras, 119the Bodhisattva Lightening Virtue, 120the Bodhisattva Freely Acting, ^121the Bodhisattva Peak Insignia, 122the Bodhisattva Gone Beyond, 123the Bodhisattva Lion’s Roar, 124the Bodhisattva Cloud Shade, 125the Bodhisattva Victorious, 126the Bodhisattva King of Mountain-insignia Banner, 127the Bodhisattva Fragrant Elephant, 128the Bodhisattva Great Fragrant Elephant, 129the Bodhisattva White Fragrant Elephant, 130the Bodhisattva Constant Effort, ^131the Bodhisattva Never Resting, 132the Bodhisattva Well-born, 133the Bodhisattva Flower Adornment, 134the Bodhisattva *Observing the Sound of the World, 135the Bodhisattva *Possessed of Great Power, 136the Bodhisattva Water King, 137the Bodhisattva Mountain King, 138the Bodhisattva Indra’s Net, 139the Bodhisattva Jewel Giver, 140the Bodhisattva Defeater of Maras, ^141the Bodhisattva Adorning the Land, 142the Bodhisattva Tuft of Golden Hair, and 143the Bodhisattva Turf of Pearly Hair. ^There are such great Bodhisattvas as mentioned above. You should be mindful of all of them, revere and worship them, thus seeking to enter the stage of nonretrogression.

 

Easy Practice We are treating this as the title of the text insted of Commentary on the Ten Stages.
preceding chapter Refers to Ayuiocchisōbon 阿惟越致相品, or Chapter on the Aspect of Nonretrogression of Commentary on the Ten Bodhisattva Stages.
a sutra Shōjōbinihōkōkyō.
holding steadfast Cited in “Chapter of Teaching” of The True Teaching, Practice, and Realization of the Pure Land Way as “Say the Name, holding steadfast to it”. Seesay the Name, holding steadfast to it”.
Tathagata, ...  See Ten epithets of the Buddha (‘Buddha’ and ‘World-honored One’ are counted as one).
great blazing mountain of gold A literary reference of Mount Sumeru.
earth, water, fire, and wind All forms of existence consist of the four elements: earth (hardness), water (humidity), fire (heat), and wind (movement).
first, second, and third dharma-insights Seethree dharma-insights”.
perfect enlightenment This ends the long quotation from the Sutra on the Questions of the Lad Ratnacandra.
upper, middle, and lower grades of practicers These three respectively refer to bodhisattvas, pratyekabuddhas, and sravakas.
sigle-heartedly Sometimes translated as “single-mindedly”.
treasures of the Dharma One of the Three Treasures: Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha.
mountain of Jambūnada gold The mountain of the most precious gold obtained from the Jambū river. A literary reference to Mount Sumeru.
hold steadfast to them in mind Seesay the Name, holding steadfast to it”.
Immeasurable Life Skt., Amitāyus.
World Sovereign King Skt., Lokeśvararāja.
Torch Lighter Skt., Dīpaṅkara.
Flower Tooth According to other texts, this reads “Flower Garden”.
Universal Wisdom Skt., Samantabhadra.
mindful of Seemind that is single”.
Pure Gold Mountain A reference to Mount Sumeru.
realm of asuras Seethree evil realms”.
superior ones Refers to humans, devas, and sages including bodhisattvas.
divine eyes and ears Seesupernatural powers”.
divine feet Seesupernatural powers”.
power to see into the minds of others Seesupernatural powers”.
wisdom to remember all former lives Seesupernatural powers”.
eyes like lotus petals Eyes shaped like pure and clear lotus petals.
pure brightness The pure brightness of wisdom.
auspicious characteristics and marks The thirty-two major physical characteristics and eighty minor marks.
The lotus flower ... See the passage of the Sutra of the Tathagata of Immeasurable Life quoted in Kyōgyōshinshō: “Although they give rise to trust through hearing the Buddha’s Name and thus are born in that land, they cannot emerge from within the lotus bud. These sentient beings, enclosed within the flower-womb, feel as though they were within a garden or palace”.
ways and means Literally “cause and condition”. Commonly used in reference to the way by which something comes about; in particular, to the completion of the Primal Vow.
mark of the thousand-spoked wheel One of the thirty-two major physical characteristics of a great person.
lotus color Usually regarded as crimson.
Vipaśyin, ..., Śākyamuni These seven Buddhas are treated as the Buddhas of the past.
Unimpeded Medicine King This Buddha, Unimpeded Medicine King (無礙薬王仏) is considered to be one and the same as the Buddha Unhindered Medicine King (薬王無礙仏) listed at the top of section 13, though the Chinese names differ.
Jewel Flower, Settled Abode, and King of Mountains The three Buddhas in the first paragraph of this section, Jewel Flower, Settled Abode, and King of Mountains are treated here as one Buddha.
numerous signs Thirty-two major physical characteristics and eighty minor marks of a Buddha.
Observing the Sound of the World Bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara.
Possessed of Great Power Bodhisattva Mahāsthāmaprāpta.