Total Pageviews

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Because Nichiren tells it like it is many hate him for it.

"Question: The Flower Garland school propounds the doctrine of the five teachings and declares all the other sutras to be inferior, and the Flower Garland Sutra, superior. The True Word school puts forth the doctrine of the ten stages of the mind, declaring that all the other sutras, being exoteric teachings, are inferior, while the True Word school, because it represents the esoteric teachings, is superior. The Zen school rejects all the sutras as belonging to the realm of written teachings and asserts “a separate transmission outside the sutras, independent of words or writing.” Because enlightenment, they say, is gained merely by sitting and facing the wall, the Zen school alone is superior. The Pure Land school sets forth two kinds of practices, correct and sundry. The Lotus Sutra and the various other sutras are rejected as belonging to the category of sundry practices, and hence one is urged to “discard, close, ignore, and abandon” them. The three Pure Land sutras, on the other hand, they claim, are adapted to the people’s capacity and are wonderful sutras belonging to the realm of correct practices. Thus each school in its conceit maintains its own biased attachment. But which one represents the true intention of Shakyamuni Buddha?

Answer: Each school declares its own sutra to be superior, all other sutras being dismissed as inferior, and on this basis labels itself the correct school. But their arguments are based merely upon the words of the teachers and not upon the Buddha’s teaching. Only the Lotus Sutrawas proclaimed superior by the Buddha himself when he expounded the simile of the five flavors, likening them to the teachings of the five periods. He also declared that of all the various sutras that he “has preached, now preaches, and will preach,” in terms of the path of attaining Buddhahood, none could rival the Lotus Sutra. These statements are in truth the Buddha’s own golden words.

Therefore, when people declare that their own sutra surpasses the Lotus Sutra, or that their own school is superior to the Lotus school, they are like persons of inferior rank calling someone of high rank a commoner, or retainers whose families have for generations been in the service of a certain lord turning against him and declaring him to be their servant. How can they escape grave retribution?

On the other hand, the assertion that the various other sutras rank below the Lotus Sutra is not based upon the words of the teachers, but is plainly stated in the text of the sutra itself. In this respect, it is like a ruler asserting that he is superior to his subjects, or a samurai calling a commoner a person of low rank. What penalty could this possibly bring? This sutra, the Lotus, represents the true intention of the Buddha and the prime concern of T’ien-t’ai and Miao-lo."

No comments:

Post a Comment