Taken from “The Praises of the Buddha,” these passages are used in most Shin Buddhist Temples in the West and may be useful for those who relate to Shin Buddhism, privately or in groups and without access to temples.

Shinshu Pledge

1. I take my refuge in the Vow of the Buddha. Reciting his Sacred Name, I will live through life with strength and serenity.

2. I adore the light of the Buddha. I will put my effort in my work with self-reflection and gratitude.

3. I follow the Teachings of the Buddha. Discerning the Right Path, I will spread the True Dharma.

4. I rejoice in the Compassion of the Buddha. I will respect and help others and do my best for the welfare of mankind.

The Creed

We rely upon Amida Buddha with our whole heart for the Enlightenment in the life to come, abstaining from all sundry practices and teachings, and giving up the trust in our imperfect self.

We believe that the assurance of our Rebirth through his Salvation comes at the very moment we put our Faith in him; and we call the Name, Namu Amida Butsu, in happiness and thankfulness for his Compassion.

We also acknowledge gratefully the benign benevolence of our Founder and the succeeding Masters who have led us to believe in this profound teaching; and we do now endeavor to follw throughout our lives the Way laid down for us.


Minister: Hard it is to be born into human life; now we are living in it. Difficult it is to hear the Teachings of the Blessed One; now we hear them. If we do not gain emancipation in this present life, we may not be free from ill-faring in the ocean of births and deaths for kalpas. Let us reverently take refuge in the Three Treasures.


We go to the Buddha for guidance. May we always walk in the way that leads to Enlightenment.

We go to the Dharma for guidance. May we be submerged in the depth of the Teachings and gain Wisdom as deep as the ocean.

We go to the Sangha for guidance. May we all with one accord live the life of harmony in the spirit of brotherhood, free from the bondage of selfishness. Minister.- Even through myriads of kalpas, hard it is to hear such excellent and profound Teachings. Now we are able to hear and receive them. Let us try to understand the Tathagata’s Teachings.

Eightfold Path

Leader – The Buddha-Dharma is the realization within one’s deepest consciousness of the oneness of all life. For the attainment of this purpose, Our Blessed Master left for us to follow the Eightfold Path, which is the way of prime importance.

Leader – First: Right Understanding

Response – To keep ourselves free from prejudice, superstition and delusion, and seek to understand the true nature of life.

Leader – Second: Right Purpose

Response – To turn away from the evils of the world and direct our minds towards righteousness.

Leader – Third: Right Speech

Response – To refrain from pointless and harmful talk and speak kindly and constructively.

Leader – Fourth: Right Conduct

Response – To see that our deeds are peaceable, benevolent, compassionate and pure, and to live the Teachings daily.

Leader – Fifth: Right Livelihood

Response – To earn our living in such a way as to entail no evil consequences.

Leader – Sixth: Right Endeavor

Response –  To direct our efforts incessantly to the overcom- ing of ignorance and craving desires.

Leader – Seventh: Right Thought

Response – To cherish good and pure thoughts, for all that we say and do arise from our thoughts.

Leader – Eighth: Right Meditation

Response – To consider often our indebtedness to Tathagata Amida and repeat the Name in thankfulness.

Leader – May the sacred presence of him who said he would be in his Teachings be our guide. May we follow his Way with faith and thanks and tread with unfaltering steps this Noble Path until we too shall attain Enlightenment. Namu Amida Butsu.


1. Reverently we come before the shrine of our Amida Buddha, the Holy One, the Perfect One. With gratitude we have brought our offering of love and devotion to honor him. We earnestly resolve to strive to understand his Holy Teachings and to walk everyday in his Blessed Path, so that like him we may attain the peace of Nirvana. Namu Amida Butsu.

2. We are solemnly gathered in the presence of the Buddha of Eternal Light and Life to sing his praises and to hear his Words of Wisdom so that our lives may be brightened in the knowledge of his presence and that the Path of Truth may be revealed before us. May his great Compassion embrace us all. Namu Amida Butsu.

3. We have gathered in this solemn company to express our gratitude for the many blessings that we receive. We have gathered to learn the wonderful Teachings of the Blessed One that our lives may become more meaningful. We have gathered to enjoy the fellowship of these many friends and to encourage one another to appreciate the Great Vow of Amida Buddha. May this day bring us still closer to the realization of our goal and inspire us towards a life of Wisdom and Compassion. Namu Amida Butsu.

4. As we begin our activities for this evening, we raise our voices and reach out with our hearts to give thanks for the countless blessings that we enjoy. The faculties of thought, speech and action, the warmth of friendship and brotherhood, the opportunity to gather in this manner in true fellowship, the feeling of oneness that pervades this gathering… for these and much more, we are truly grateful. May the Light of Amida Buddha’s wisdom shine upon the path as we strive towards the higher goals of love and service. Namu Amida Butsu.

5. I take my refuge in Amida Buddha and dedicate myself to his service. May his Teachings guide me during the day, in my work and in my play. Namu Amida Butsu.

6. With a heart full of love and gratitude, I repeat the Holy Name and take my refuge in Amida Buddha, in his Teachings, and in his Temple. May my parents, my family and my teachers be surrounded by the Life, Light and Love of the Eternal Buddha. Namu Amida Butsu.

Mettabhavana (Meditations)

1. Amida Buddha surrounds all men and all forms of life with Infinite Love and Compassion. Particularly does he send forth loving thoughts to those in suffering and sorrow, to those in doubt and ignorance, to those who are striving to attain Truth; and to those whose feet are standing close to the great change men call death, Amida Buddha sends forth oceans of Wisdom and Compassion. Namu Amida Butsu.

2. May the Wisdom of the All-Compassionate One so shine within our hearts and minds, that the mists of error and the foolish vanity of self may be dispelled. So shall we understand the changing nature of existence and reach spiritual peace. Namu Amida Butsu.

Golden Chain of Love

I am a link in Amida Buddha’s Golden Chain of Love that stretches around the world. I must keep my link bright and strong.

I will try to be kind and gentle to every living thing and protect all who are weaker than myself.

I will try to think pure and beautiful thoughts, to say pure and beautiful words, and to do pure and beautiful deeds, knowing that on what I do now depends not only my happiness or unhappiness, but also those of others.

May every link in Amida Buddha’s Golden Chain of Love become bright and strong, and may we all attain Perfect Peace.

Children’s Pledge

To the Buddha, who promised to be present in His Teachings, we pledge our loyalty and devotion. We dedicate our lives to the way of life he laid down for us to walk. We resolve to follow his example and labor earnestly for the welfare of all mankind.

The Promise (Creed)

We thank the Buddha for showing to us the Way of Freedom. We will endeavor to walk in His Noble Path every- day of our lives.

Children’s Eightfold Path

Leader – The Buddha teaches us that we may become pure and holy by following the rules He laid down for us. Let us repeat them and remember them at all times.

First – Right Understanding

Answer – We should learn and try to understand the Truth taught by Shinran Shonin.

Leader – Second: Right Purpose

Answer – We should try always to do what is right.

Leader – Third: Right Speech

Answer – We should be truthful and kind in all we say.

Leader – Fourth: Right Conduct

Answer – We should try to behave ourselves at all times.

Leader – Fifth: Right Livelihood Answer.- We should earn our living in a way which will not harm anyone. Leader.- Sixth: Right Endeavor

Answer – We should constantly try to improve ourselves.

Leader – Seventh: Right Thought

Answer – We should try to have good and pure thoughts because our words and our actions arise from our thoughts.

Leader – Eighth: Right Meditation

Answer – We should think often of AmidaBuddha and repeat His Holy Name. Namu Amida Butsu.

Children’s Aspirations

1. Happy are boys and girls who come before the shrine of the Buddha to offer incense.

2. We bring our offerings with thanksgiving to Amida Buddha.

3. With our hands clasped in gassho, we think of Amida’s great love for us and offer this small token of our love for him. Namu Amida Butsu.

4. Quietly we put our hands together and in our hearts we give thanks to Amida Buddha for his great love for us. Namu Amida Butsu.

5. Gentle are Buddha’s children In school, at church or at play. Gentle are Buddha’s children In thoughts, in words, and in deeds.

6. On this day children everywhere gather in the temple of Amida Buddha and raise their voices in praise of his wonderful wisdom and compassion. May we all in thanksgiving dedicate ourselves to the ideals as laid down by our teachers and masters. Namu Amida Butsu.

7. As we begin our service quietly, we still our thoughts so that we shall be able to hear our voices within that sing the praises of Amida Buddha. Let us resolve to learn his Teachings and try to become better boys and girls and gladden his heart. Namu Amida Butsu