November 15, 2013 at 2:25pm
Tan and Todd never read scriptures, they parrot what their masters tell them, they do not travel the path or analyse, they have retired their thinking and meditative processes bcos priests will do it for them; they have retired their thirst for the Dharma and insult the memory and work of Nichiren whilst disrespecting the lord of teachings the eternal Buddha sakyamuni so i found the time to collect a few of nichiren's own words for them: You may pile up dung and call it sandalwood, but when you burn it, it will give off only the fragrance of dung. You may pile up a lot of great lies and call them the teachings of the Buddha, but they will never be anything but a gateway to the great citadel of the hell of incessant suffering.
Our teacher, Shakyamuni Buddha, in the course of his lifetime of teaching, expounded eighty thousand sacred doctrines. He was the first Buddha to appear in this saha world of ours, which previously had not known any Buddha, and he opened the eyes of all living beings. All the other Buddhas and bodhisattvas from east and west, from the lands of the ten directions, received instruction from him.
The period prior to his advent was like the time before the appearance of the rulers and emperors of ancient China, when men did not know who their own fathers were and lived like beasts. In the time before Emperor Yao, people knew nothing about the duties to be performed in the four seasons, and were as ignorant as horses or oxen.
In the period before the appearance of Shakyamuni Buddha in the world, there were no orders of monks or nuns; there were only the two categories of men and women. But now we have monks and nuns who, because of the teachers of the Shingon sect, have decided to look upon Dainichi Buddha as the supreme object of veneration and have demoted Shakyamuni Buddha to an inferior position, or who, because they believe in the Nembutsu, pay honor to Amida Buddha and thrust Shakyamuni Buddha aside. They are monks and nuns by virtue of the Lord Shakyamuni, but because of the erroneous teachings handed down from the founders of these various sects, they have been led to behave in this way.
There are three reasons why Shakyamuni Buddha, rather than any of the other Buddhas, has a relationship with all the people of this saha world. First of all, he is the World-Honored One, the sovereign of all the people of this saha world. Shakyamuni, the World-Honored One, is our august sovereign. It is he who is to be regarded as the supreme object of veneration. The second reason is that Shakyamuni Buddha is the father and mother of all the persons in this saha world.
The ancient ruler Shun, grieved because his father had gone blind, shed tears, but when he wiped his hands, wet with those tears, on his father's eyes, his father's eyesight was restored. Now Shakyamuni Buddha does the same for all of us, opening our eyes so as to "awaken the Buddha wisdom" innate within us. No other Buddha has ever yet opened our eyes in such a way.
The third reason is that Shakyamuni is the original teacher of all persons in this saha world.
He passed away at the age of eighty, leaving behind his relics to provide the means of salvation for all the persons of the Former, Middle and Latter Days of the Law. Amida, Yakushi, Dainichi and the others, on the other hand, are the Buddhas of other realms; they are not the World-Honored One of this world of ours.
This saha world occupies the lowest position among all the worlds of the ten directions. Among these worlds, it holds a place like that of a prison within a nation. All the persons in the worlds of the ten directions who have committed any of the ten evil acts, the five cardinal sins, the grave offense of slandering the True Law or other terrible crimes and have been driven out by the Buddhas of those worlds have been brought together here in this saha land by Shakyamuni Buddha.
Yet Shakyamuni Buddha entered this saha world of ours with the title Nonin, "He Who Can Forbear." He is so called because he does not berate its people for the slanders they all commit but shows forbearance toward them. These, then, are the special qualities possessed by Shakyamuni Buddha, qualities that the other Buddhas lack.
Shakyamuni Buddha, who was a reincarnation of one of these sons, appeared in this saha world of ours. We people too, have been born into the saha world. Therefore, we must not in any way turn away from the teachings of Shakyamuni Buddha. But people all fail to realize this. If they would look carefully into the matter, they would understand that, as the Lotus Sutra says, "I [Shakyamuni] alone can save them," and that they must not cut themselves off from the helping hand of Shakyamuni Buddha.
For this reason, all the persons in this saha world of ours, if they detest the sufferings of birth and death and wish to have an object of veneration to which they can pay respect, should first of all fashion images of Shakyamuni Buddha in the form of wooden statues and paintings, and make these their object of worship. Then, if they still have strength left over, they may go on to fashion images of Amida and the other Buddhas.
Yet when the people of this world today, being unpracticed in the sacred ways, come to fashion or paint images of a Buddha, they give priority to those of Buddhas other than Shakyamuni. This does not accord either with the intentions of those other Buddhas, or with the intentions of Shakyamuni Buddha himself, and is moreover at variance with secular propriety.
Shakyamuni Buddha, our father and mother, who is endowed with the three virtues of sovereign, teacher and parent, is the very one who encourages us, the people driven out by all other Buddhas, saying, "I alone can save them." The debt of gratitude we owe him is deeper than the ocean, weightier than the earth, vaster than the sky. Though we were to pluck out our own two eyes and place them before him as an offering until there were more eyes there than stars in the sky, though we were to strip off our skins and spread them out by the hundreds of thousands of ten thousands until they blanketed the ceiling of heaven, though we were to give him our tears as offerings of water and present him with flowers for the space of a hundred billion kalpas, though we were to offer him our flesh and blood for innumerable kalpas, until our flesh piled up like mountains and our blood overflowed like vast seas, we could never repay a fraction of the debt we owe to this Buddha!
Shakyamuni is the original teacher for all people, as well astheir sovereign and their parent. Because I have expounded this teaching, Ihave been exiled and almost killed. As the saying goes: "Good advice is harsh to the ear." But still I am not discouraged. The Lotus Sutra is like the seed, theBuddha like the sower and the people like the field. If you go against theseprinciples, in your next lifetime, not even I, Nichiren, can save you.
I am the envoy of Shakyamuni Buddha, and those gods should prostrate themselves before me with their palms joined. As votary of the Lotus Sutra, Bonten and Taishaku attend me on either side, and the gods of the sun and moon illuminate my path before and behind. One may make use of my counsel, but if I am not given due respect as the votary of the Lotus Sutra, then the country will perish.
This mandala is in no way Nichiren's invention. It is the object of worship which perfectly depicts Lord Shakyamuni in the Treasure Tower and all the other Buddhas who were present, as accurately as the print matches the woodblock. The five characters of the Lotus Sutra's title are inscribed in the center of the Treasure Tower, while the Four Heavenly Kings are seated at the four corners. Shakyamuni and Taho Buddhas, as well as the four leaders of the Bodhisattvas of the Earth, are lined across the top. Seated below them are the Bodhisattvas Fugen and Monju, and men of Learning, including Shariputra and Maudgalyayana. Beside them are posted the gods of the sun and the moon, the Devil of the Sixth Heaven, the Dragon King and ashura; Fudo and Aizen take up their stations to the south and north, respectively. The devilishly treacherous Devadatta and the Dragon King's ignorant daughter attend, too. The demon Kishimojin appears with her ten daughters, who sap the lives of people throughout the universe. Also present are the guardian deities of Japan: Tensho Daijin and Bodhisattva Hachiman, representing the seven ranks of heavenly gods, the five ranks of earthly gods, and all other major and minor gods in general. As all the gods appear in their essence, so must they appear in their manifestations. The Hoto chapter states, "All the assembly were lifted and present in the air." Dwelling in the Gohonzon are all the Buddhas, bodhisattvas and great saints, as well as the eight groups of sentient beings of the two realms who appear in the first chapter of the Lotus Sutra. Illuminated by the five characters of the Mystic Law, they display the enlightened nature they inherently possess. This is the true object of worship.
When Shakyamuni Buddha revealed that he had gained enlightenment in the far distant past, it became apparent that all the other Buddhas were emanations of Shakyamuni. When the Buddha preached the earlier sutras and the first half, or theoretical teaching, of the Lotus Sutra, the other Buddhas were pictured as standing on an equal footing with Shakyamuni, after completing their respective practices and disciplines. Therefore the people who pay devotion to one or another of these Buddhas as the object of worship customarily look down on Shakyamuni Buddha. But now it becomes apparent that Vairochana Buddha, who is described in the Kegon Sutra as being seated on a lotus pedestal, and the various Buddhas who appear in the sutras of the Hodo and Hannya periods, such as the Dainichi Sutra, are all in fact followers of Shakyamuni Buddha.
The path to Buddhahood is not to be found in the Kegon doctrine of the phenomenal world as created by the mind alone, in the eight negations of the Sanron sect, in the Consciousness-Only doctrine of the Hosso sect, or in the Shingon type of meditation on the five elements of the universe. Only the T'ien-t'ai doctrine of the three thousand realms in a single moment of life is the path to Buddhahood. Even in the case of this doctrine of the three thousand realms in a single moment of life, we do not possess the kind of wisdom and understanding to comprehend it fully. Nevertheless, among all the sutras preached by the Buddha during his lifetime, the Lotus Sutra alone contains this jewel which is the doctrine of the three thousand realms in a single moment of life. The doctrines of the other sutras are merely yellow stones that appear to be jewels. They are like sand, from which you can extract no oil no matter how hard you squeeze it, or a barren woman who can never bear a child. Even a wise man cannot become a Buddha through the other sutras, but with the Lotus Sutra, even fools can plant the seeds that lead to Buddhahood.
When Shakyamuni Buddha in the clouds above the Sacred Mountain, in the mists of Eagle Peak, summed up the essence of the doctrine and entrusted it to the Bodhisattvas of the Earth, what do you suppose that teaching was? It was nothing other than these five characters, the essential law.
The Lord Shakyamuni assembled Taho Buddha as well as all the other Buddhas, who were his own emanations, from throughout the ten directions and left one great medicine --the five characters of Myoho-renge-kyo-for the people of the Latter Day of the Law. He refused to entrust it to any of the bodhisattvas such as Hoe, Kudokurin, Kongosatta, Fugen, Monju, Yakuo and Kannon, let alone to Mahakashyapa, Shariputra [or any other man of the two vehicles]. Rather, there were four great bodhisattvas, including Jogyo, who had been disciples of Shakyamuni Buddha since gohyaku-jintengo. Not even for a moment had they ever forgotten the Buddha. Shakyamuni summoned these bodhisattvas and transferred Myoho-renge-kyo to them.
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