Introduction to
Contemplation Sutra of Buddha Amitayus


The Sutra is one of three basic Sutras in Pure Land School. It is sometimes abbreviated as The Contemplation Sutra.

It starts with one of the most well known stories in Buddhism regarding King Ajatasatru and his mother Vaidehi. One day, Vaidehi was extremely desparate because of the evil deeds of his son, King Ajatasatru. She came to Shakyamuni Buddha and asked for help. With the aid of the Buddha's power, Vaidehi chose the Sukhavati of Amitabha Buddha in the west, out of numerous Pure Lands in all directions shown by Shakyamuni.

The Buddha also gave a detailed description of this Pure Land, and showed her the way to be reborn in Sukhavati by means of sixteen kinds of contemplation. This Sutra is also known as The Sutra of Sixteen Contemplations.