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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Even some who put their faith in the Lotus Sutra fall into hell

"When, based on the sutras, I speak in general terms of such matters, only I, of all the 4,994,828 men and women in Japan, am thought strange, and the other 4,994,827 persons all regard me as their enemy. Strangely enough, they do not follow Shakyamuni, who is their sovereign, teacher, and parent. What is more, they curse and strike me, drive me away, and, by resorting to slander, cause me to be sentenced to exile or execution. It is the way of the world that the poor fawn upon the rich, the lowly revere the noble, and the few follow the many. So even those persons who chanced to put their faith in the Lotus Sutra are intimidated by society and fear others, and many of them fall into hell. This is most pitiful.
But, perhaps because of Nichiren’s ignorant outlook or some past karma, when I read the statements that “the Lotus is the foremost,” that “among the sutras I have preached, now preach, and will preach, this Lotus Sutra is the most difficult to believe and the most difficult to understand,” and that “I am the only person who can rescue and protect others,” I take them to be the golden words of the Thus Come One himself. They are not my own words at all.
The people of today, however, believe the pronouncements of their own teachers to be the golden words of the Thus Come One. Thus they place such pronouncements on the same level as the Lotus Sutra, considering the two to be of equal authority; or they regard these teachings as superior to the Lotus Sutra; or they reason that though their teacher’s pronouncements are inferior they are well suited to the capacity of the people." 

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