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Reciting Meditation

by Tina Tai

“Amitabha, Amitabha, Amitabha, Amitabha…” I had been reciting Buddha’s name for a day with my mind. This was the first time I attended the reciting meditation. The procedure was much easier than I expected, only reciting “Amitabha” through walking and sitting meditation and keep repeating it throughout the day. In fact, this reciting meditation includes two parts: the first one is the dharma talk and the second part is the reciting meditation, both are led by Guo Ming Fashi.

The dharma talk was about recitation. As our Master Sheng Yen always mentioned, learning dharma has to be balanced on both understanding and practicing. We should know “why” we do it, not just from actually practicing it. This is why “education” is so important. Therefore, before the day of reciting meditation, a dharma talk was given. We would understand that this is a method of learning dharma and meditation as well. We were not asking anything; nor were we not being mindless. We had to focus our mind reciting, and only reciting. Sincere recitation of Amitabha will help us purify our mind, in which self-cultivation starts from this point.

The reciting meditation is a full day of silent practice, but only of reciting Amitabha. We started with walking meditation, fast-walking meditation, and also sitting meditation, all with reciting Amitabha. We just repeat the cycle for the day. Even when we had lunch, we were using this method. We practiced our eating meditation with the CD playing of Amitabha. It was amazing that I refrained myself from talking by reciting Amitabha, which helped stop my wandering thoughts. My entire mind is full of “Amitabha”.

It is a new method of doing meditation to me. It is so simple and easy, nothing complicated. Just concentrate your mind on “Amitabha”. Further, in your everyday life, you could recite (maybe silently) “Amitabha” whenever and whatever you are doing. Make it a habit; your mind would be purified, as well as our land. “Amitabha, Amitabha, Amitabha, Amitabha…”