Is our chanting session 

a superhighway or a country lane? 

Remember the time you were so absorbed in what you were doing that you forgot about the time?

Now think of your last chanting session.

Did time pass as quickly? In the first example, you were doing something you really enjoyed. In the chanting example, it was something you knew you should do, and even wanted to, but focus was simply elusive. Goodness, all those wandering thoughts! What to do?

Chanting can be like driving on a superhighway or on a country road. If it’s like the latter, we drive along enjoying the scenery, stop to visit the town we’re passing through, get a bite to eat, check out the park, and amble back to our car. Enjoyable, but it’s going to take a long time to reach our destination. Taking the superhighway, we don’t stop to see all the various sights because that would require us to get off the highway. There’s no time for that.

We need to focus on our driving, on “Amituofo,” because we want to get to our destination ASAP. 



Do not compare one person to another . . . (Click image for video)


Difficult to teach, 

we are like children ignoring a parent’s advice. 

With infinite patience and compassion, and in fulfillment of their vows to help all beings, Buddhas and bodhisattvas await the opportunity to help us. So we wonder, why don’t they just come?

Okay, let’s say they do. If they come to us looking like a Buddha, we’d be too in awe to listen to them. After we finally stop gaping and actually pay attention to what they teach about suffering and its end, what then? Very likely, we’d still be too attached to our current existence to let it all go. We’ll make excuses. To practice the teachings to end our suffering—that’s a big leap! We’re just ordinary people.

And what if they came in the guise of an ordinary person?

We’d just waive off their advice—hey, they don’t look like Buddhas. Like children, we’ll be too self-absorbed to listen to advice, too stubborn to ask for help, too self-indulgent to want to change.

Little wonder that it’s so difficult for awakened beings to come to help us.