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Switch to Forum Live View What does "other power" mean?
8 years ago  ::  Aug 27, 2009 - 8:55PM #1
RenGalskap
Posts: 1,420
If you don't mind explaining something to a Zen Buddhist who's trying to get a handle on Pure Land, what does the expression "other power" mean to you?
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7 years ago  ::  Jan 27, 2011 - 9:32AM #2
Shawn_burke
Posts: 2

I know this was posted quite a while ago but I just noticed it. Other Power refers to the Buddha-mind as opposed to the power of our own egos, which is referred to as Self Power.  

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7 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 6:18PM #3
RenGalskap
Posts: 1,420
Thanks for the response, Shawn. :-)
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7 years ago  ::  Feb 01, 2011 - 1:14AM #4
etoro
Posts: 595

Originally speaking "others power" refers to the 42 vows taken by Amida Buddha to save all those who call his name.

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7 years ago  ::  Feb 23, 2011 - 6:37PM #5
tpandrews
Posts: 8

other power is interpreted a few different ways depending on the tradition within the larger pure land tradition. 


the easiest explaination is that this power is amitabha himself. the idea here is that since we are completely incapable of attaining enlightenment through any means of our own (self power), we have to place all of our faith in a power other than oursleves (amitabha) to save us.


some traditions, especially those which have traditionally had close relations with chan/zen schools often interpret amitabha not so much as a literal being, but as more of a symbol for our buddha nature. by meditating on amitabha we eventually come to see that we are amitabha in the same way that zen students would say we are our buddha nature and at that moment the line between self and amitabha disappears there no longer is any self power or other power. just power. classic zen nonduality in pureland language.

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