“The Mirror of Buddhism Reveals the Nation’s Rise and Fall”
On the Occasion of the August Kosen-rufu Shodai Ceremony
August 7, 2011
Reception Hall, Head Temple Taisekiji
Good morning, everyone!
On this occasion of the August Kosen-rufu Shodai Ceremony, conducted here today at the Head Temple, I would like to express my heartfelt appreciation to the large number of participants in attendance.
The month of August has arrived. I imagine that each chapter is striving for the achievement of this year’s shakubuku goal, and that the Nichiren Shoshu priesthood and laity are devoting themselves to shakubuku, day and night.
The meaning of our vow in Buddhism is to achieve the attainment of enlightenment, while also maintaining the firm determination to save as many people as possible. Once one makes a vow, it must be accomplished.
This year, in particular, started with the enormous damage and suffering caused by the Great East Japan Earthquake. This was followed by radioactive contamination problems due to an accident at a nuclear power plant that resulted from the earthquake, and property damage due to excessive rainfall. Moreover, it seems that in response to these natural disasters, the government and economy have been in utter chaos.
Many people are deeply distressed by these present conditions. Why do these kinds of disasters occur? And what is the resolution to the problem? Even though it seems that professionals research the answers, they unfortunately will not be able to find the ultimate solution.
The Daishonin teaches in “Rulers of the Land of the Gods” (“Shinkokuo-gosho”):
If one wishes to examine one’s face, one must only look into a clear mirror. Likewise, when one tries to understand the nation’s rise and decline, the most telling source is that of the Buddhist mirror, because there is no teaching more superior.
One can refer to the various Mahayana sutras, such as the Sutra of the Benevolent King (Nin’no-kyo), Sutra of the Golden Light (Konkomyo-kyo), Sovereign Kings Sutra (Saisho’o-kyo), Protection Sutra (Shugo-kyo), Nirvana Sutra, and Lotus Sutra. They all state that depending on the Buddhist teaching that the people follow, either the nation will prosper and the people’s lives will be prolonged, or the nation will come to ruin and the people’s lives will be cut short. One could compare this to water, which is able to float a boat, but also can potentially destroy it. Or, it is like the five kinds of grain, which can sometimes nourish human life and other times injure it.
Small waves and a gentle breeze cannot do much damage to a large ship, but high waves and strong winds can capsize a small boat easily. In the same way, slight imperfections in the secular rule of the sovereign are like small waves and a gentle breeze, and cannot do much damage to a great nation or a great man. But mistaken application of the Buddhist teachings, like high waves and strong winds that capsize a small boat, most certainly can cause the ruin of the nation.
(Gosho, p. 1301)
This passage states, “when one tries to understand the nation’s rise and decline, the most telling source is that of the Buddhist mirror, because there is no teaching more superior…depending on the Buddhist teaching that the people follow, either the nation will prosper and the people’s lives will be prolonged, or the nation will come to ruin and the people’s lives will be cut short.” This indicates that the clear reflection of the mirror of Buddhism reveals the nation’s rise and fall, based on the correctness of the Buddhist teaching upheld in the nation.
This was mentioned specifically in the Rissho ankoku-ron. It states that society’s unhappiness and all causes for anguish and confusion are due to the poison of slander against the true Law. When we establish the true teaching of the mystic Law (Myoho) and refute slander, the three calamities and seven disasters will be eliminated, the nation’s accumulated crises will disappear, and the solid foundation of the Buddha land will be established, with peace and tranquility.
Thus, the best way to aim for the establishment of the Buddha land is to sever one’s attachments to erroneous doctrines without delay, and take faith in the “supreme teaching of the one vehicle of the Lotus Sutra.” This means that one must devote oneself to the Dai-Gohonzon of the High Sanctuary of the Essential Teaching of the Three Great Secret Laws.
We sincerely follow the teachings of the True Buddha Nichiren Daishonin with strong confidence. We refute slanderous teachings, in order to actualize the true Buddha land for society and its people, and we continuously conduct shakubuku. These are the most important things to do, in order to save Japan and the world, which has gone adrift due to the poison of slandering the Law. This is the foremost mission and responsibility of Nichiren Shoshu priests and believers. Each one of us always must keep this serious matter in mind.
This is the “Year of Taking Action to do Shakubuku.” Therefore, rather than just sitting around and talking about kosen-rufu, the most important thing is to stand up and offer yourself by taking action for kosen-rufu.
Thus in each chapter, the priesthood and laity of Nichiren Shoshu must carry out the spirit of itai-doshin, and vigorously take action to do shakubuku toward the achievement of our goals for 2015 and 2021. I sincerely pray that all chapters will achieve this year’s goals. •