I’m forever asking questions I’ve asked before, it must be really annoying for Sunim and everyone in the group. But there I was, asking, once again, about relying on the Buddha and transference of merit. Surely the Buddha, in all his compassion, sees my suffering and will give me a hand. Isn’t that what Amida Buddha promises?
“What you mean” someone laughed, “is that you want the Buddhas to do all the work for you!”
Sunim laughed too and gave her response. “It’s like those children’s toys” she said “that always spring up into their original position. So even if someone were to pick you up and carry you to another place, who’s to say you wouldn’t just re-find the position that you are most comfortable with?”
The whole group took Sunim’s analogy and ran with it, saying that it is possible to make our Buddha-naure, or Juingong, our centre of gravity rather than giving that role to our small selves, and that we can rely upon that Buddha-nature to always spring us back up. I’m sure they are right.
I’m also sure that Sunim is spot on; even if (or rather, when) Amida Buddha does carry (or perhaps kick!) me to the Pure Land, unless I make some effort and unless I develop the skill and habit of relying completely on my own inherant Buddha-nature, I may soon find myself back where I started!
“Amitabha Buddha existing within my mind, I vow to hurry and meet.”
– A Thousand Hands of Compassion