Shandao’s Parable of the Two Rivers and the White Path

matthewsatori:

Shandao’s parable of the two rivers and the white path has profound significance for our daily lives:
http://web.mit.edu/stclair/www/shantao.html

The parable can be seen as a cautionary tale on the three poisons of delusion, passion, and aversion:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_poisons

The river of water represents passion; sensual desire. The river of fire represents aversion; anger and hate. The voices of ruffians, telling us to abandon the path, represent ignorance and delusion.

As we walk the narrow white path of the Buddha, we are made to, little by little, leave our delusion, passion, and aversion behind; on the white path to “unending bliss.”

That Shandao meant the white path as a path we take in our daily life can be found in the following passage:

The man proceeding on the path toward the West is comparable to one who directs all of his actions and practices toward the West (the Pure Land).
http://web.mit.edu/stclair/www/shantao.html

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NAMU-AMIDA-BUTSU

As we walk the narrow white path of the Buddha, we are made to, little by little, leave our delusion, passion, and aversion behind; on the white path to “unending bliss.”