Wednesday, July 4, 2018

The Meaning of Faith and Nembutsu in Jodo Shinshu Buddhism (free online edition)

tentative cover - I'm still working on it

This book is, as the title shows, an attempt to explain the meaning of faith and Nembutsu in accordance with the teaching of our school.
I start my explanations with the Primal Vow of Amida Buddha because without it there would be no Jodo Shinshu. As Shinran said:

“If Amida’s Primal Vow is true, Shakyamuni’s teaching cannot be false. If the Buddha’s teaching is true, Shan-tao’s commentaries cannot be false. If Shan-tao’s commentaries are true can Honen’s words be lies? If Honen’s words are true, then surely what I say cannot be empty.”[1]

Every Buddhist school has a lineage of transmission. Ours starts with Amida Buddha, then continues with Shakyamuni, the historical Buddha, the seven Masters, Shinran Shonin, Rennyo Shonin and any true teacher that came after them and was loyal to the Primal Vow. What all the representatives of our lineage said with one voice is that the Primal Vow is true and that it contains everything we need for our attainment of Buddhahood in the Pure Land of Amida.

“Be in accord with the Primal Vow” is the motto of our school and this book tries its best to do just that – to be in accord with the Primal Vow, to turn people’s minds toward the Primal Vow and make them follow exclusively the requirements of the Primal Vow. May all beings who read it abandon the wrong teachings of non-Buddhist paths and among the various Buddhist teachings and practices chose the one which represents the true reason for all Buddhas coming to this world – the Nembutsu of faith, the One Vehicle of the Primal Vow.

The free online edition:
According to one of my religious vows, I always provide a free online edition (pdf) of anything I write, so I invite you to download this book from the following links:

If you have difficulties in downloading it, please write to me at, and I will send you a copy myself.

NEW! The audio version is now available on my youtube channel!  - click here to listen. 

The printed edition:
My plan is to have a printed version as soon as possible, but for the moment I don't have enough funds to do this. If you can, please consider a small donation to help me printing it or just to support me and my Dharma activities. Any amount, no matter how little, is gratefully received and appreciated. 

Yours in Namo Amida Butsu,


[1] Tannisho, chapter 2 - The Collected Works of Shinran, Shin Buddhism Translation Series, Jodo Shinshu Hongwanji-ha, Kyoto, 1997, p.662 

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