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Saturday, October 27, 2007

on New Year's morning



by Issa, 1825 Age 64.

This haiku refers to the nembutsu (namu amida butsu): a prayer of thanksgiving for, and praise of, Amida Buddha's saving grace. Eons ago, Amida promised that all who rely on his saving power will be reborn in the Pure Land (the Western Paradise). According to Shinji Ogawa, the word ju^ nembutsu refers to a Buddhist scripture of that name.
I assume that it refers to a recitation of namu amida butsu ten times in a row. In any case, I took "ten" out of my translation, because this doesn't add much significance for the English speaking reader:
"ten prayers to Buddha" is now "the prayers to Buddha."

Tr. David Lanoue
http://cat.xula.edu/issa/

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Here is more about the Amida Prayer.

To recite it 10 times each morning as a practise of the devoted believer.
http://haikutopics.blogspot.com/2006/11/namu-amida-butsu.html

Gabi

4 comments:

Gillena Cox said...

New year a time of beginnings and what better way than in praise of the divine


much love
gillena

sakuo said...

thank you Gillena san for your kind comment that always encourage me much.

sakuo.

Josho Adrian Cirlea said...

hello, I am a nembutsu follower from Romania and wish to say that I like Issa very much and also your blog:)
I am looking to find more poems of Issa translated into English

sakuo said...

Thank you josho san for coming here from Romania.
If you wish to find more Issa, you should go firstly to this site.
http://cat.xula.edu/issa/

My Issa's original has all come from here.

Thank you for sharing.

sakuo.