Muryoju-kyo Sutra (無量寿経)
"Muryoju-kyo Sutra" is one of the Buddhist scriptures of Mahayana Buddhism.
The original title is "Sukhavativyuha Sutra ('Sukhāvatīvyūha'in Sanskrit)," which means 'Solemnity of the Pure Land (Gokuraku-no-sogon).'
It is also called "the larger Sukhavativyuha Sutra" in order to be distinguished from "Amida Sutra," which has the same name in Sanskrit
There is original text written in Sanskrit as well as Tibetan-translated text and Chinese-translated text(translated into Chinese).
In Japan, it is generally referred to as "Bussetsu Muryojukyo"(translated by Sogi Kosogai).
The details can be found in the following Bussetsu Muryojukyo:
It is expressed in the present writing system due to the problems pertaining to a nation's script (daily-use kanji, kanji for common use and the list of 1006 kanji taught in Japanese primary schools).
It is said that there were 12 translations, but only five exist today while seven are missing. It is referred to as having a total of 12 translations, meaning the existing five and the seven that are missing.
Out of the five existing translations, there are various theories about the translators of 'Kan-yaku (Han translation),' 'Go-yaku (Go translation)' and 'Gi-yaku (Wei translation).'
Chinese Commentaries on 'Buddha's Immeasurably Pure Sutra on the Equal Enlightenment'
Volume 4 of "Buddha's Immeasurably Pure Sutra on the Equal Enlightenment" was translated later into Chinese by the early monk Lokaksema (also known as 支婁迦讖 Zhī Lóujiāchèn in Chinese and Shirukasen in Japanese).
Volume 12 of "Taisho Shin shu Daizokyo" (hereafter "Taisho Tripitaka") p 279 to 299.
The titles of the original sutras were "Buddha's Immeasurably Pure Sutra on the Equal Enlightenment" (Volumes 1 to 4) translated by the early monk Lokaksema (also known as 支婁迦讖 Zhī Lóujiāchèn in Chinese and Shirukasen in Japanese) in the late Han Dynasty.
As an abbreviation, either "Seijobyodokakukyo" or "Byodokakukyo" is used.
It is also said that Hogo JIKU, Zhu Fahua (Jikuhougo) in West Jin or Baiyan (Hakuen) in Sogi translated it.
The Primal Vow of Amitabha is not 'forty-eight vows' but 'twenty-four vows.'
The above is quoted mainly from the following: "Kammuryoju-kyosho (Kangyosho) (Commentary on the Meditation Sutra)," by Shandao; "Ojoyoshu (Buddhism book)," by Genshin (a priest); "Senchakuhongan nenbutsu shu," by Honen; "Kenjodo-shinjitsu-kyogyo shomonrui" and "Gutoku-sho," by Shinran, and "Anjin Ketsujo Sho," which is of unknown authorship.
The Sutra on the Way of Salvation of Humans by Amida, the Perfectly Enlightened One, that Transcends all Buddhas
"Bussetsu Amida Sanya Sanbutsu Saru Butsudan Kadonindo Kyo Sutra, Vol. 2," translated by Zhi Qian in Go (Three countries): 'Go-translation.'
"Taishozo," Vol. 12, pp.300 to 317.
The original way of writing the title is "Bussetsu Amida Sanya Sanbutsu saru butsudan kadonindo kyo Sutra, Part 1" and "Bussetsu Amida Sanya Sanbutsu saru butsudan kadonindo kyo Sutra, Part 2," as translated by Zhi Qian-koji in Yuezhi, Go.
The scripture is also called "the Larger Sukhavativyuha Sutra."
The scripture is also said to have been translated by Lokaksenma in Houhan.
The primal vow of Amitabha is not 'forty-eight vows' but 'twenty-four vows.'
"Bussetsu Muryojukyo, Vol. 2," translated by Sogi Kosogai in Wei: 'Wei translation.'
Of the Chinese translations, the Jodo sect group mainly uses "Bussetsu Muryojukyo, Vol. 2," which is said to have been translated by Sogi Kosogai. In the Jodo sect group, "Muryojukyo" refers to "Bussetsu Muryojukyo," as translated by Sogi Kosogai, if there is no advisory.
It is among the basic scriptures of Japanese Jodo sect and is called 'the Jodo Sanbu-kyo,' along with "Kammuryoju-kyo (Meditation Sutra)," translated by Ryuso Kyoryoyasha, and "Amida-kyo Bussetsu Amida Sutra," translated by Kumaraju.
Shinran, the founder of the Jodo Shinshu (the True Pure Land Sect of Buddhism) offshoot of the Jodo Sect placed particular weight on this sutra and it is seen as the most important scripture to Jodo Shinshu.
It is also called "Dai Muryojukyo" (the Sutra of Immeasurable Life (Wo-liang-shou ching)," (abbreviated as "Daikyo"); since it is comprised of two parts, it is also called "Sokan Muryojukyo" or "Sokankyo."
"Taishozo," Vol. 12 pp.265 to 279.
The original way of writing the title was "Bussetsu Muryojukyo, Part 1" and "Bussetsu Muryojukyo, Part 2," as translated by Sogi Tenjiku Sanzo Kosogai.
There are various theories in regard to the translator. In general scripture, it is written that the translator was "Sogi Tenjiku Sanzo Kosogai."
The special feature of the 'Wei Translation' is the frequent appearance of vocabulary such as 'natural,' 'idleness' and 'purity' which were common to Taoism and Daoism of the Tao and Western Jin Dynasty.
The preface describes that Shaka exhibits and preaches about the excellent features of five virtues to brilliant bhiksus and bodihisattvas at Mt. Ryojusen, as well as at Griddhakuta in Rajagrha.
In the main exposition component (shoshubun) of the commentary on the sutra, the king of a certain country entered the priesthood as a disciple of Sejizaiobutsu (The Buddha who Enjoyed Perfect Freedom in the World) and assumed the religious name Hojo Bosatsu. He prepared Buddhist gaatha (verses) and made venerations and, expressed a desire to behold the building up of Buddhism in various countries. From Buddhist countries he selected the very best of aspects, prayed and, pondered for a long time over which course to take.
Hozo bosatsu, who has made vows and achieved his will, expressed his forty-eight vows to his mentor.
He then expressed the purpose of the vows and again swore to accomplish them. ('Juseige :Verses reiterating vows (Sanseige sutra)').
He preached that he had performed ascetic practices for a very long time, completed his vows, became Buddha of Immeasurable Life (Amida Buddha); the name of the Buddha Land was 'the Pure Land.'
Ten kalpa passed after the completion of his vows; the virtue of Amida Buddha and the Buddha Land, or "the Pure Land," are also described.
It was preached and people earnestly felt that upon death everyone had a desire to be born in Sukhavati (Amitabha's Pure Land), committed to becoming a Buddha and, sincerely rejoiced on hearing the name Amitabha
They are divided into the top, second and third classes of Buddhists, and their respective way of birth in the Pure Land is preached. Unable to pursue ascetic training nor were subordinates able to be charitable or protect the less fortunate who for example, were preached to that they would definitely die a happy death if they prayed fervently even if only a bare minimum number of times.
Shakyamuni advises them to read Gemon ('Tohoge sutra (verses on going to pay reverence to Amida)'), listen to the teachings, respect Amida Buddha and to be born in the Pure Land.
He also preaches to them the virtue of the sacred who have passed away into (were born in) the Pure Land.
Next, Shakyamuni shows Maitreyathe the reasons for the pains of creatures who live in the world of earthly desires (Edo, this impure world) and preaches against them: three banes, five evils, such as killing, stealing, sexual misconduct, lying and drinking.
He tells Maitreyathe that they cannot be freed from the pains and that birth in the Pure Land is the way to be released from them.
He also preaches that by simply listening to the name of Buddha of Immeasurable Life and uttering his name (invocation) the efficacy of Buddha can be attained. He states that those who listen to this teaching are never to backslide (they are sure to be born in the Pure Land).
In the epilogue, he states that they should keep chanting the name of the supreme efficacy; even when all the other laws have disappeared with the passing of time, this sutra (Muryoju-kyo Sutra) is sure to remain and keep working for the salvation of people.
Muryoju Nyoraie (Sutra of Tathagata of Immeasurable Life)
"Sutra of Tathagata of Immeasurable Life," Vol. 2, translated by Bodhiruci in Tang: Tang translation
"Taisho zo," Vol. 11 pp.91 to 101.
The original way of writing the title is "Daihousekikyo Sutra, Vol. 17," 'Muryoju Noraie, No. 1 of 5,' "Daihousekikyo, Vol. 18," and 'Muryoju Nyoraie, No. 2 of 5,' translated by Daito Sanzo Bodairushi.
"Nyoraie" is used as an abbreviation.
The original vow of Amitabha is 'forty-eight' the same as in 'the Wei translation.'
The above is mainly quoted from "Kyogyoshinsho," "Jodofumi ruishusho," "Gutoku-sho," "Passages (Concerning) Birth in the Pure Land in the Three Pure Land Sutras" (Jodo Sankyo Ojo Monrui)," "Ichinentamen-moni," "Nyorai Nishu Eko-mon," "Shinran Shonin Onshosoku (Zensho book: Book of good nature)"by Shinran, and "Shoshinge Taii (Shoshinge summary)," by Rennyo.
Bussetsu daijo muryoju shogonkyo sutra
"Bussetsu Daijo muryoju shogonkyo sutra, Vol. 3," translated by Hokken in Sung (Kingdom): Sung translation.
"Taishozo," Vol. 12, pp. 318 to 326.
The original way of writing the title is "Bussetsu Daijo muryoju shogonkyo sutra, Part 1," "Bussetsu Daijo muryoju shogonkyo sutra, Part 2," "Bussetsu Daijo muryoju shogonkyo sutra, Part 3," as translated by Sanzo Chosandaibu Shikorokukyo Meikyodaishi Shin Hoken in India.
"Sogonkyo" is used as an abbreviation.
In it, the Primal Vow of Amida Buddha is not 'forty-eight vows' but 'thirty-six vows.'
The seven paraphrased books that are considered missing
"Muryoju-kyo Sutra, Vol. 2," which is said to have been translated by An Shi-gao in Houhan.
"The Wu-liang ch'ing-ching p'ing-teng chiao-ching, Vol. 2," which is said to have been translated by Baiyan in Sogi.
"Bussetsu Muryojukyo, Vol. 2," which is said to have been translated by Hogo JIKU in West Jin.
"Bussetsu Muryoju Shishin Toshogaku kyo, Vol. 1," which is said to have been translated by Horiki JIKU in East Jin.
"Shin Muryoju kyo sutra, Vol. 2," which is said to have been translated by Buddhabhadra in East Jin.
"Shin Muryoju kyo sutra, Vol. 2," which is said to have been translated by Houn in East Jin.
"Shin Muryoju kyo sutra, Vol. 2," which is said to have been translated by Mitta DONMA in Sung (South Court).