Nichiren on the General Transmission:
"Answer: In this passage, Shakyamuni Buddha explains that he is entrusting to the Bodhisattvas of the Earth, his original disciples, the five characters of Myoho-renge-kyo, which is the essence of the Lotus Sutra. Shakyamuni, who attained enlightenment countless kalpas in the past, says elsewhere, "By now the original vows that I made have already been fulfilled. I have converted all living beings and caused them all to enter the Buddha way." Thus, he has already fulfilled his earlier vow. Then, intending to charge his disciples with the task of accomplishing widespread propagation in the fifth five hundred years after his death, he called forth the Bodhisattvas of the Earth and entrusted them with the heart of the sutra, the lotus of the entity of the essential teaching. This passage represents the ultimate purpose for which Shakyamuni Buddha appeared in the world, the secret Law that he attained in the place of meditation. It is this passage that gives proof of the lotus of the entity that, for those of us who live in the Latter Day of the Law, assures the attainment of Buddhahood in both the present and future."
"It is the five characters of Myoho-renge-kyo that constitute the Great Pure Law that will be spread widely in the Latter Day of the Law. And it is the great bodhisattvas who sprang up from, the earth in numbers equal to the dust particles of a thousand worlds who were entrusted with the task of spreading it abroad. Therefore Nan-yueh, T’ien-t’ai and Dengyo, though in their hearts they understood the truth, left it to the leader and teacher of the Latter Day to spread it widely, while they themselves refrained from doing so."
Nichiju interprets the General Transmission:
Nichiren on the Specific Transmission:
"Accordingly, at the present time in the Latter Day of the Law, other than the envoy of the Thus Come One, there can be no one who understands and produces this passage as proof of the lotus of the entity. Truly it is a passage of secret meaning. Truly it is a matter of great concern. Truly it is to be honored and admired. Namu-myoho-renge-kyo, Namu-myoho-renge-kyo!"
"Bodhisattva Superior Practices received the water of the wisdom of the Mystic Law from the Thus Come One Shakyamuni and causes it to flow into the wasteland of the people’s lives in the evil world of the latter age. This is the function of wisdom. Shakyamuni Buddha transferred this teaching to Bodhisattva Superior Practices, and now Nichiren propagates it in Japan. With regard to the transfer of teachings, it is divided into two categories: general and specific. If you confuse the general with the specific even in the slightest, you will never be able to attain Buddhahood and will wander in suffering through endless transmigrations of births and deaths."
"The leader and teacher of the Latter Day" is specific to one man, Nichiren Daishonin (Bodhisattva Jogyo). "Bodhisattvas of the Earth" is general to all those who follow Nichiren. There are not superior and inferior Bodhisattvas of the Earth. The responsibilities of laymen and priests are blurred in Mappo and there is only one High Priest and one leader, Nichiren Daishonin.
Question: The Lotus Sutra states that there are many leaders of his own great assembly with various large and small retinues of followers. Wouldn't that mean Daisaku Ikeda, the High Priest of the Nichiren Shoshu, the Chief Bishop of Minobu. Nikkyo Niwano, and others?
Answer: At this time, there is only Nichiren Daishonin and his followers. Those who follow Nichiren Daishonin and are of the same mind as he ["The bodhisattvas, as numerous as the dust particles of a thousand worlds,
Daisaku Ikeda, the High Priest of Nichiren Shoshu, the Chief Bishop of Minobu, Nikkyo Niwano, and Nissen however, are not of the same mind as Nichiren. Nikkyo Niwano, despite chanting the daimoku, failed to even acknowledge Nichiren Daishonin as the leader of the Bodhisattvas of the Earth. Daisaku Ikeda and the High Priest of Nichiren Shoshu throw out Shakyamuni Buddha. The Bishop of Minobu allows all sorts of sundry practices and a false transmission between priests and lay believers [not to mention interfaith] and Nissen proclaimed his joy to have been born in a Buddha-less world.
Since they are not of the same mind as Nichiren and are not his followers, they are not Bodhisattvas of the Earth. Since they are not Bodhisattvas of the Earth, they are not even inheritors of the general transmission.