Scobie John/Buddhist Food For Thought 011715 SGI-UK/Japan

A translation of President Ikeda’s “To My Friends”
published in the Seikyo Shimbun and more.

Saturday, Jan 17th, 2015
— TO MY FRIENDS —
The wisdom and hope that we need
in order to win in life is
in the writings of Nichiren Daishonin!
Even if it is just a single phrase,
let’s try to study the Daishonin’s teachings
each and every day.

Saturday, Jan 17th, 2015
— DAILY GOSHO —
“From this single element of mind spring all the various lands and environmental conditions.”

(The Unanimous Declaration by the Buddhas of the Three Existences regarding the Classification of the Teachings and Which Are to Be Abandoned and Which Upheld
– The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, Vol. 2, page 843)
Selection source: “Myoji no Gen”,
Seikyo Shimbun, Jan 17th, 2015

Sunday, Jan 18th, 2015
—- DAILY ENCOURAGEMENT —-
Throughout his writings, Nichiren Daishonin speaks of the three obstacles and four devils,[1] one of which is the hindrance of death. This devilish function serves to arouse doubt and confusion through the death of those striving diligently in Buddhist practice.

“We all have our own karma, but as ordinary mortals we cannot grasp its depth. Even should steadfast practitioners of Nichiren Buddhism die young, their death will enable them to actualise the Buddhist principle of ‘lessening karmic retribution.'[2]

“Those who strive energetically for kosen-rufu as genuine practitioners of the Mystic Law are certain to attain Buddhahood, however their lives may end.

“An early Buddhist scripture tells the story of a lay believer named Mahanama. He asked the Buddha where and in what form of existence he would be reborn were he to suddenly meet his end in an accident due to being distracted by the bustle of the town instead of concentrating his thoughts on the Three Treasures—the Buddha, the Law, and the Buddhist Order.

“The Buddha responded: ‘For instance, Mahanama, if a tree bends to the east, slopes to the east, tends to the east, which way will it fall when its roots are cut?’

“To which Mahanama replied: ‘It will fall [in the direction that] it bends, slopes and tends.'[3]

“Through this story, the Buddha taught that those who embrace Buddhism and practise assiduously, even if they were to meet with an unexpected, accidental death, will be carried by the Law in the direction of rebirth in good circumstances.”

SGI Newsletter No. 9165, The Wisdom for Creating Happiness and Peace, Part 1: Happiness, Chapter 6: Facing the All-Important Questions of Life and Death—Part 2 [of 2], 6.10 Sudden and Untimely Deaths, from the December 2014 issue of the Daibyakurenge, translation released 28th Dec. 2014

[1] Three obstacles and four devils: Various obstacles and hindrances to the practice of Buddhism. The three obstacles are (1) the obstacle of earthly desires, (2) the obstacle of karma, and (3) the obstacle of retribution. The four devils are (1) the hindrance of the five components, (2) the hindrance of earthly desires, (3) the hindrance of death, and (4) the hindrance of the devil king.

[2] Lessening karmic retribution: This term, which literally means, “transforming the heavy and receiving it lightly,” appears in the Nirvana Sutra. “Heavy” indicates negative karma accumulated over countless lifetimes in the past. As a benefit of protecting the correct teaching of Buddhism, we can experience relatively light karmic retribution in this lifetime, thereby expiating heavy karma that ordinarily would adversely affect us not only in this lifetime, but over many lifetimes to come.

[3] The Book of the Kindred Sayings (Sanyutta-Nikāya) or Grouped Suttas, Part 5, translated by Mrs. Rhys Davids (Oxford: Pali Text Society, 1994), p. 321.

* The Japanese kanji is available by clicking on Seikyo Shinbun’s web-site address at http://www.seikyoonline.jp/news/index.html

–WAGATOMO NI OKURU–
JINSEI O KACHI HIRAKU
CHIE TO KIBO WA
GOSHO NO NAKA NI ARI!
ISSETSU DEMO II.
HIBI HAIDOKU NI CHOESEN O!

— KYO NO GOSHO —
“KOKORO NO IPPO YORI KOKUDO SEKEN MO SHUTTAI SURUKOTO NARI”
(Gosho Zenshu, page 563)
__._,_.___

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