Discussion:
ABOUT THE KEMPON HOKKE KAI
(too old to reply)
M***@rochester.rr.com
2008-10-27 06:03:12 UTC
Permalink
"KEMPON HOKKE" means "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra." It is the orthodox Hokke (Lotus Sutra) sect, as established
by Nichiren Daishonin in Japan.

The Kempon Hokke-USA is the overseas lay organization of the Kempon
Hokke of Japan. Kempon Hokke of Japan derives its teachings directly
from Nichiren, and was officially founded by Nichi-ju, (originally
named Gemmyo), a Tendai priest who had converted to the exclusive
teachings of the Lotus Sutra and Nichirenwhen he was sixty-six years
old after reading two writings of Nichiren, The Opening of the Eyes
and Practicing According to the Preachings. He founded the head
temple, Myomanji, in Kyoto and various other temples. Kempon Hokke is
known for it's orthodox approach to Nichiren's teachings and for it's
emphasis on scholastic study of the Lotus Sutra and the works of
Nichiren. It discourages viewpoints that depart from the true
intentions of Nichiren and those that minimize the study of the Lotus
Sutra. Even as early as Nichi-juu's time, there were many distortions
of Nichiren's basic doctrines. There were many forgeries attributed
to Nichiren and there were other traditions based on "secret
transmissions" that had no basis in historical or doctrinal reality.

Kempon Hokke means, "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra" and this teaching derives from the "Hokkekyo" (Lotus Sutra),
the works of T'ien-t'ai(538-597 AD) of China, Dengyo (767-822 AD) of
Japan, and especially by Nichiren Daishonin (1222-1282) of Japan.
Nichiren Daishonin distilled the teaching into the formula "Namu myo
ho renge kyo" (the title of the Lotus Sutra), established the supreme
mandala called the "Gohonzon", and wrote many treatises on the
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, especially as it relates to the present
age.

There are many sects and organizations that invoke Nichiren's name
and adopt aspects of his teachings, but few keep his doctrines intact
and actually try to practice them, just as Nichiren mandated.

For example, the Taisekiji (Fuji Ha) sect and the modern day
Soka Gakkai utilize the "daimoku" in a truncated form (they have
abbreviated the chant by changing "Namu" to "Nam") and they have
replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni, as described in the 16th
Chapter of the Lotus Sutra, with Nichiren himself, something that
Nichiren never advocated. This idea did not appear until the 17th
century, hundreds of years after Nichiren's death. Likewise, they
have created an "ita Mandala" (board or plank mandala) to replace
all authenticated Nichiren Gohonzons (written in Nichiren's own
hand).

The so-called "dai-Gohonzon" did not appear until 1488, more than
two centuries after Nichiren's death. The handwriting and composition
of the "dai-Gohonzon" is highly suspect. Taisekiji bases it's
teachings
on "secret oral transmissions" and many forged documents. During
and after Nichiren's death, many Buddhist teachers used the principle
of "secret oral transmissions" to justify their teachings. It has led
to
many twisted interpretations of Nichiren's doctrine.

In the Kempon Hokke, there are no such secret transmissions. The
true transmission or succession lies in the scrolls of the Lotus
Sutra
and is transmitted directly from the Original Buddha, found in the
Lotus Sutra, to the believer. This principle is called "kyokan sojo".

There is no special secret doctrine handed to one disciple alone.
There is no intermediary between the believer and the Lotus Sutra.
When one takes faith in the Lotus Sutra, as elucidated by Nichiren
himself (and we must base this on his authentic writings, rejecting
all forgeries) then we have the true succession from the eternal
Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the 16th Chapter of the the Lotus
Sutra, to the believer directly. Those who place their faith
in "secret transmissions" outside of the words of Nichiren and the
Lotus Sutra are likely to be fooled by spiritual tyrants. Any faith
in an external hierarchy or "succession" (Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
are the best examples) places the teaching and the benefits outside
of the individual practitioner. Nichiren admonished his followers
to "never seek this teaching outside of yourself". He often quoted
the Nirvana Sutra ("Daihatsu-nehan-gyo") which says "Rely on the
Dharma: do not rely on human beings. Rely on (innate Buddha) wisdom:
do not rely on consciousness alone." Likewise, Dengyo Daishi (founder
of the Tendai school in Japan and Nichiren's predecessor in
transmitting the teachings of the Lotus Sutra) said, " Place reliance
on the Buddhas's preaching: do not believe in oral transmissions"
(Hokke Shuku, DDZ, V. 3, 245.)

Nichiren's teachings are especially relevant for this time period
("Mappo" or "Age of Degeneration") in which secular and religious
struggles are rampant and Buddhist teachings, apart from the ultimate
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, lose their efficacy to lead to
Buddhahood. This degeneration was predicted in the "Daijikkyo Sutra"
(the Great Collection Sutra) where the decline was laid out in the
five "five-hundred-year" periods.

"Mappo" will exist until the coming of the next historical Buddha,
Maitreya (also called "Ajita"). In these subsequent "five-hundred-
year" periods, all buddhist sutras preached before the Hokkekyo
(Lotus Sutra) will degenerate and whatever is left of these pre-
Hokkekyo teachings and their accompanying practices will be just an
empty shell. If these"provisional" sutras are followed and the Lotus
Sutra is discarded or disparaged, then the provisional teachings will
lead to "hell" in future lifetimes. In such simplistic terms this
kind of karmic retribution seems too apocalyptic, but the predictions
are rooted in the deepest realms of Buddhist introspections, far
beyond the meditative capacity of people in a degenerate age. Truly,
the ultimate reality can only be shared between Buddhas because
common mortals are swayed by the illusions that create the matrix of
mundane life.

The Lotus Sutra is the only vehicle to cross the sea of suffering and
end the cycle of birth-and-death. By faith in this ultimate teaching
of the Original Buddha, one is assured of Buddhahood, even though
understanding is not yet developed. Buddhahood is "ceded" by the
Original Buddha to the believer in the Lotus Sutra, one who practices
the chanting of the "daimoku" (great title) of "Namu myo ho renge
kyo". Since the illusions of the age is great and the shallowness of
the beings is inherent, the "medicine" of the Lotus Sutra is profound
yet simple.

The Lotus Sutra and, more particularly, the essence of the Lotus
Sutra or the "daimoku" ("Namu myo ho renge kyo") will spread at the
time of struggle and destruction, precisely when other Buddhist
teachings have lost their curative powers. The text of the Lotus
Sutra clearly indicates that even when the other buddhist teachings
disappear, the Great Pure ("White") Dharma of the Lotus Sutra will be
propagated over the world, according to the principle of "correct
time" (i.e. our present age). It is the "medicine" to cure the ills
of this time period.

In this Degenerate age, Buddhahood is only assured through faith in
the Lotus Sutra. Faith in the pre-Lotus Sutra teachings can only lead
to the hell realm and less frequently to the realm of hunger and
animality (the Three Lower Worlds). The One Vehicle of the Lotus
Sutra is the path to rapidly lessen our karmic hindrances accumulated
from countless lifetimes of ignorance, anger and stupidity.

In all other sutras, the historical Shakyamuni is shown to have first
attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in India three thousand
years ago and is the one who preaches the provisional teachings
and who answers questions according to the capacities of the
audience.

In the Lotus Sutra, the historical Shakyamuni reveals his true
identity as the Original Buddha, enlightened since before time
without beginning. This transcendent Original Buddha declares that
his enlightenment under the Bodhi tree was a "skillful means" to lead
people to universal enlightenment. Likewise, the Buddha's death
("Nirvana") too, is a "skillful means" to bring people to the
ultimate
teaching found only in the depths of the Lotus Sutra. In reality, the
Buddha has always been enlightened and he never dies but exists even
now and forever. The cycle of life-and-death is an illusion that
imprisons sentient beings in the "Saha" (triple) world, our world of
endurance and suffering.

The ultimate reality (which is depicted in Nichiren's mandala, the
"Gohonzon") is a transcendent, timeless and deathless enlightenment
that is the legacy of all sentient beings. Faith in the Lotus Sutra
immediately gives us the "cause and effect" accumulation of the
Buddha's merits and practice. Since it is the teaching of the
Original Buddha, it is "difficult to believe and difficult to
accept", unlike the provisional sutras, which where preached
according to the capacities of the listeners. However, it is the
direct path to Buddhahood.

Taisekiji (the Fuji Sect) has spawned Nichiren Shoshu and Soka
Gakkai. The latter is a lay organization that has separated itself
from Nichiren Shoshu (the official sect name of Taisekiji). The
"theology" of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai is far removed from the
original teachings of Nichiren. In truth, they derive their doctrines
from later teachers. These later abbots of Taisekiji adopted the
popular trends of the Muromachi Period. These were the trends of
"chuko Tendai" (medieval Tendai). These schools, therefore, possess a
particular vocabulary and doctrine that set it apart from the Kempon
Hokke, the Buddha founded sect. Heavily influenced by the Muromachi
ideas of "original enlightenment" and "you are the Buddha just as you
are", they developed several peculiar teachings, like the
unenlightened worldling is the Original Buddha, the teacher of
Shakyamuni Buddha. Although, the idea of "original enlightenment" was
used by Dengyo and Nichiren, it was used in an extemely cautious
manner. By the time of the late Muromachi, these terms had come to
mean someting quite different and to set itself apart from the
traditional Nichiren sects, Taisekaji readily adopted them.

In short, these ideas that form the basis of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
"theology" were developed long after Nichiren and his immediate
successors died. These cunning abbots of Taisekiji not only came up
with viewpoints that reflected their own opinions, rather than
Nichiren's, but when those opinions conflicted with Nichiren's words,
Taisekiji would either re-interpret or alter Nichiren Daishonin's
words. The 9th abbot, Nichi-u who died of white leprosy first
revealed the "dai-Gohonzon" to the world, in 1488. The 26th abbot,
Nichikan wrote many works stating, in effect, "Nichiren said this,
but he really meant something else". He re-interpreted Nichiren's
words to conform to his viewpoint.

A modern example of something like this, in the Western context, is
Emanuel Swedenborg who claimed to have experienced supernatural
visions,and, according to the "instructions" that he received, he
wrote sweeping allegorical interpretations of the scriptures. Joseph
Smith and the Mormon Church is another example of such "latter day"
re-interpretation of earlier scripture.

Taisekaji's departure from Nichiren's true teachings is as follows:
They replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the Lotus Sutra,
with Nichiren or in the case of the Soka Gakkai who confuses the
Buddha and the Law, with Namu Myoho renge kyo. In the authentic
Gosho ("writings" ), Nichiren identifies the True Original Eternal
Buddha as Shakyamuni Buddha. Nichiren carried a statue of Shakyamuni
with him until the day he died. Taisekiji attempts to overcome the
teaching of Nichiren on the identity the "Eternal Buddha" by stating
that he really meant himself but was too humble to come out and say
it. There is not even a hint of this in the Lotus Sutra or the
writings of Nichiren.

Neither can they be found in the writings of his immediate disciples,
even Nikko who founded Taisekiji and only spent 18 months there. He
spent the next 36 years of his life at Kitayama Hommonji, where most
of his authentic works are kept. He died there in 1333, the same year
his disciple, Nichimoku, died. Nikko never returned to Taisekiji once
he
departed.

If the so-called "dai-Gohonzon" existed at that time, then Nikko
never
mentioned it nor did he return to Taisekiji to view it again. Nikko is
buried
at Kitayama Hommonji and his grave faces Minobu, the resting place of
Nichiren Daishonin.

In the "Rissho Ankoku Ron" and the other major writings, Nichiren
stated repeatedly that the troubles of Japan stemmed from having
abandoned the Original Buddha Shakyamuni and having replaced
him with other Buddhas, such as Dainichi, Yakushi, and Amida Buddha.
It is inconceivablethat Nichiren would warn against abandoning the
Eternal Shakyamuni, only to later have Taisekiji abbots replace this
Eternal Shakyamuni with Nichiren himself! One only has to read the
words of Nichiren to realize how inconsistent this idea is with
Nichiren's most basic beliefs.

The first mention of the idea of "Nichiren as True Buddha" surfaces
in the 17th Century, by Nissho. A great many forgeries have been
created within Taisekiji to bolster their claims whichgo against the
words of Nichiren. Even in the "Major Works of Nichiren", translated
by Soka Gakkai, the constant references that Nichiren makes to
the "Eternal Shakyamuni" are heavily footnoted or altered to claim
Nichiren was really referring to himself.

"Casting off" the Eternal Shakyamuni Buddha pollutes the Nichiren
faith. It stems the flow of benefit and cuts off the rewards of the
Lotus Sutra. What is left is a imitation of what Nichiren actually
believedand practiced. When the Eternal Shakyamuni is re-introduced
into the practice of the believer, the real benefits and "profound
joy" of chanting is brought back to life. Altering this this key
component developed by Nichiren, the faith and practice of Taisekiji
and Soka Gakkai becomes a counterfeit ritual that merely gives the
illusion of benefit.

Likewise, the tendency to "deify" either the current High Priest, or
Daisaku Ikeda is a crutch to keep people attached to Taisekiji and
the Soka Gakkai. It has nothing to do with the faith and practice of
the Lotus Sutra as Nichiren intended it.

The glorification of the "fake mandala", the "dai-Gohonzon", which,
according to the Taisekaji priests, "renders all authentic Nichiren
Gohonzons worthless" (the exact words of Nichi-u, the 9th High Priest
who first introduced it, two hundred years after Nichiren's death),
is
doubly pernicious because it cuts off the connection between the
believer, the real Nichiren and his authentic representation of the
Gohonzon.

If you wish to experience authentic Nichiren Buddhism based firmly
on the Lotus Sutra and the writings of Nichiren Daishonin and rapidly
attain Buddhahood, I encourage you to try the practice for ninety
days. I will assist you any way I can. I will send you sutra books,
and the Tradition of Nichiren Doctrine for free, and will help you to
receive a Gohonzon.

(An essay based on the writings of Graham Lamont and edited by me).
cmk
2008-10-28 05:38:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by M***@rochester.rr.com
"KEMPON HOKKE" means "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra." It is the orthodox Hokke (Lotus Sutra) sect, as established
by Nichiren Daishonin in Japan.
The Kempon Hokke-USA is the overseas lay organization of the Kempon
Hokke of Japan. Kempon Hokke of Japan derives its teachings directly
from Nichiren, and was officially founded by Nichi-ju, (originally
named Gemmyo), a Tendai priest who had converted to the exclusive
teachings of the Lotus Sutra and Nichirenwhen he was sixty-six years
old after reading two writings of Nichiren, The Opening of the Eyes
and Practicing According to the Preachings. He founded the head
temple, Myomanji, in Kyoto and various other temples. Kempon Hokke is
known for it's orthodox approach to Nichiren's teachings and for it's
emphasis on scholastic study of the Lotus Sutra and the works of
Nichiren. It discourages viewpoints that depart from the true
intentions of Nichiren and those that minimize the study of the Lotus
Sutra. Even as early as Nichi-juu's time, there were many distortions
of Nichiren's basic doctrines. There were many forgeries attributed
to Nichiren and there were other traditions based on "secret
transmissions" that had no basis in historical or doctrinal reality.
Kempon Hokke means, "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra" and this teaching derives from the "Hokkekyo" (Lotus Sutra),
the works of T'ien-t'ai(538-597 AD) of China, Dengyo (767-822 AD) of
Japan, and especially by Nichiren Daishonin (1222-1282) of Japan.
Nichiren Daishonin distilled the teaching into the formula "Namu myo
ho renge kyo" (the title of the Lotus Sutra), established the supreme
mandala called the "Gohonzon", and wrote many treatises on the
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, especially as it relates to the present
age.
There are many sects and organizations that invoke Nichiren's name
and adopt aspects of his teachings, but few keep his doctrines intact
and actually try to practice them, just as Nichiren mandated.
For example, the Taisekiji (Fuji Ha) sect and the modern day
Soka Gakkai utilize the "daimoku" in a truncated form (they have
abbreviated the chant by changing "Namu" to "Nam") and they have
replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni, as described in the 16th
Chapter of the Lotus Sutra, with Nichiren himself, something that
Nichiren never advocated. This idea did not appear until the 17th
century, hundreds of years after Nichiren's death. Likewise, they
have created an "ita Mandala" (board or plank mandala) to replace
all authenticated Nichiren Gohonzons (written in Nichiren's own
hand).
The so-called "dai-Gohonzon" did not appear until 1488, more than
two centuries after Nichiren's death. The handwriting and composition
of the "dai-Gohonzon" is highly suspect. Taisekiji bases it's
teachings
on "secret oral transmissions" and many forged documents. During
and after Nichiren's death, many Buddhist teachers used the principle
of "secret oral transmissions" to justify their teachings. It has led
to
many twisted interpretations of Nichiren's doctrine.
In the Kempon Hokke, there are no such secret transmissions. The
true transmission or succession lies in the scrolls of the Lotus
Sutra
and is transmitted directly from the Original Buddha, found in the
Lotus Sutra, to the believer. This principle is called "kyokan sojo".
There is no special secret doctrine handed to one disciple alone.
There is no intermediary between the believer and the Lotus Sutra.
When one takes faith in the Lotus Sutra, as elucidated by Nichiren
himself (and we must base this on his authentic writings, rejecting
all forgeries) then we have the true succession from the eternal
Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the 16th Chapter of the the Lotus
Sutra, to the believer directly. Those who place their faith
in "secret transmissions" outside of the words of Nichiren and the
Lotus Sutra are likely to be fooled by spiritual tyrants. Any faith
in an external hierarchy or "succession" (Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
are the best examples) places the teaching and the benefits outside
of the individual practitioner. Nichiren admonished his followers
to "never seek this teaching outside of yourself". He often quoted
the Nirvana Sutra ("Daihatsu-nehan-gyo") which says "Rely on the
do not rely on consciousness alone." Likewise, Dengyo Daishi (founder
of the Tendai school in Japan and Nichiren's predecessor in
transmitting the teachings of the Lotus Sutra) said, " Place reliance
on the Buddhas's preaching: do not believe in oral transmissions"
(Hokke Shuku, DDZ, V. 3, 245.)
Nichiren's teachings are especially relevant for this time period
("Mappo" or "Age of Degeneration") in which secular and religious
struggles are rampant and Buddhist teachings, apart from the ultimate
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, lose their efficacy to lead to
Buddhahood. This degeneration was predicted in the "Daijikkyo Sutra"
(the Great Collection Sutra) where the decline was laid out in the
five "five-hundred-year" periods.
"Mappo" will exist until the coming of the next historical Buddha,
Maitreya (also called "Ajita"). In these subsequent "five-hundred-
year" periods, all buddhist sutras preached before the Hokkekyo
(Lotus Sutra) will degenerate and whatever is left of these pre-
Hokkekyo teachings and their accompanying practices will be just an
empty shell. If these"provisional" sutras are followed and the Lotus
Sutra is discarded or disparaged, then the provisional teachings will
lead to "hell" in future lifetimes. In such simplistic terms this
kind of karmic retribution seems too apocalyptic, but the predictions
are rooted in the deepest realms of Buddhist introspections, far
beyond the meditative capacity of people in a degenerate age. Truly,
the ultimate reality can only be shared between Buddhas because
common mortals are swayed by the illusions that create the matrix of
mundane life.
The Lotus Sutra is the only vehicle to cross the sea of suffering and
end the cycle of birth-and-death. By faith in this ultimate teaching
of the Original Buddha, one is assured of Buddhahood, even though
understanding is not yet developed. Buddhahood is "ceded" by the
Original Buddha to the believer in the Lotus Sutra, one who practices
the chanting of the "daimoku" (great title) of "Namu myo ho renge
kyo". Since the illusions of the age is great and the shallowness of
the beings is inherent, the "medicine" of the Lotus Sutra is profound
yet simple.
The Lotus Sutra and, more particularly, the essence of the Lotus
Sutra or the "daimoku" ("Namu myo ho renge kyo") will spread at the
time of struggle and destruction, precisely when other Buddhist
teachings have lost their curative powers. The text of the Lotus
Sutra clearly indicates that even when the other buddhist teachings
disappear, the Great Pure ("White") Dharma of the Lotus Sutra will be
propagated over the world, according to the principle of "correct
time" (i.e. our present age). It is the "medicine" to cure the ills
of this time period.
In this Degenerate age, Buddhahood is only assured through faith in
the Lotus Sutra. Faith in the pre-Lotus Sutra teachings can only lead
to the hell realm and less frequently to the realm of hunger and
animality (the Three Lower Worlds). The One Vehicle of the Lotus
Sutra is the path to rapidly lessen our karmic hindrances accumulated
from countless lifetimes of ignorance, anger and stupidity.
In all other sutras, the historical Shakyamuni is shown to have first
attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in India three thousand
years ago and is the one who preaches the provisional teachings
and who answers questions according to the capacities of the
audience.
In the Lotus Sutra, the historical Shakyamuni reveals his true
identity as the Original Buddha, enlightened since before time
without beginning. This transcendent Original Buddha declares that
his enlightenment under the Bodhi tree was a "skillful means" to lead
people to universal enlightenment. Likewise, the Buddha's death
("Nirvana") too, is a "skillful means" to bring people to the
ultimate
teaching found only in the depths of the Lotus Sutra. In reality, the
Buddha has always been enlightened and he never dies but exists even
now and forever. The cycle of life-and-death is an illusion that
imprisons sentient beings in the "Saha" (triple) world, our world of
endurance and suffering.
The ultimate reality (which is depicted in Nichiren's mandala, the
"Gohonzon") is a transcendent, timeless and deathless enlightenment
that is the legacy of all sentient beings. Faith in the Lotus Sutra
immediately gives us the "cause and effect" accumulation of the
Buddha's merits and practice. Since it is the teaching of the
Original Buddha, it is "difficult to believe and difficult to
accept", unlike the provisional sutras, which where preached
according to the capacities of the listeners. However, it is the
direct path to Buddhahood.
Taisekiji (the Fuji Sect) has spawned Nichiren Shoshu and Soka
Gakkai. The latter is a lay organization that has separated itself
from Nichiren Shoshu (the official sect name of Taisekiji). The
"theology" of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai is far removed from the
original teachings of Nichiren. In truth, they derive their doctrines
from later teachers. These later abbots of Taisekiji adopted the
popular trends of the Muromachi Period. These were the trends of
"chuko Tendai" (medieval Tendai). These schools, therefore, possess a
particular vocabulary and doctrine that set it apart from the Kempon
Hokke, the Buddha founded sect. Heavily influenced by the Muromachi
ideas of "original enlightenment" and "you are the Buddha just as you
are", they developed several peculiar teachings, like the
unenlightened worldling is the Original Buddha, the teacher of
Shakyamuni Buddha. Although, the idea of "original enlightenment" was
used by Dengyo and Nichiren, it was used in an extemely cautious
manner. By the time of the late Muromachi, these terms had come to
mean someting quite different and to set itself apart from the
traditional Nichiren sects, Taisekaji readily adopted them.
In short, these ideas that form the basis of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
"theology" were developed long after Nichiren and his immediate
successors died. These cunning abbots of Taisekiji not only came up
with viewpoints that reflected their own opinions, rather than
Nichiren's, but when those opinions conflicted with Nichiren's words,
Taisekiji would either re-interpret or alter Nichiren Daishonin's
words. The 9th abbot, Nichi-u who died of white leprosy first
revealed the "dai-Gohonzon" to the world, in 1488. The 26th abbot,
Nichikan wrote many works stating, in effect, "Nichiren said this,
but he really meant something else". He re-interpreted Nichiren's
words to conform to his viewpoint.
A modern example of something like this, in the Western context, is
Emanuel Swedenborg who claimed to have experienced supernatural
visions,and, according to the "instructions" that he received, he
wrote sweeping allegorical interpretations of the scriptures. Joseph
Smith and the Mormon Church is another example of such "latter day"
re-interpretation of earlier scripture.
They replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the Lotus Sutra,
with Nichiren or in the case of the Soka Gakkai who confuses the
Buddha and the Law, with Namu Myoho renge kyo. In the authentic
Gosho ("writings" ), Nichiren identifies the True Original Eternal
Buddha as Shakyamuni Buddha. Nichiren carried a statue of Shakyamuni
with him until the day he died. Taisekiji attempts to overcome the
teaching of Nichiren on the identity the "Eternal Buddha" by stating
that he really meant himself but was too humble to come out and say
it. There is not even a hint of this in the Lotus Sutra or the
writings of Nichiren.
Neither can they be found in the writings of his immediate disciples,
even Nikko who founded Taisekiji and only spent 18 months there. He
spent the next 36 years of his life at Kitayama Hommonji, where most
of his authentic works are kept. He died there in 1333, the same year
his disciple, Nichimoku, died. Nikko never returned to Taisekiji once
he
departed.
If the so-called "dai-Gohonzon" existed at that time, then Nikko
never
mentioned it nor did he return to Taisekiji to view it again. Nikko is
buried
at Kitayama Hommonji and his grave faces Minobu, the resting place of
Nichiren Daishonin.
In the "Rissho Ankoku Ron" and the other major writings, Nichiren
stated repeatedly that the troubles of Japan stemmed from having
abandoned the Original Buddha Shakyamuni and having replaced
him with other Buddhas, such as Dainichi, Yakushi, and Amida Buddha.
It is inconceivablethat Nichiren would warn against abandoning the
Eternal Shakyamuni, only to later have Taisekiji abbots replace this
Eternal Shakyamuni with Nichiren himself! One only has to read the
words of Nichiren to realize how inconsistent this idea is with
Nichiren's most basic beliefs.
The first mention of the idea of "Nichiren as True Buddha" surfaces
in the 17th Century, by Nissho. A great many forgeries have been
created within Taisekiji to bolster their claims whichgo against the
words of Nichiren. Even in the "Major Works of Nichiren", translated
by Soka Gakkai, the constant references that Nichiren makes to
the "Eternal Shakyamuni" are heavily footnoted or altered to claim
Nichiren was really referring to himself.
"Casting off" the Eternal Shakyamuni Buddha pollutes the Nichiren
faith. It stems the flow of benefit and cuts off the rewards of the
Lotus Sutra. What is left is a imitation of what Nichiren actually
believedand practiced. When the Eternal Shakyamuni is re-introduced
into the practice of the believer, the real benefits and "profound
joy" of chanting is brought back to life. Altering this this key
component developed by Nichiren, the faith and practice of Taisekiji
and Soka Gakkai becomes a counterfeit ritual that merely gives the
illusion of benefit.
Likewise, the tendency to "deify" either the current High Priest, or
Daisaku Ikeda is a crutch to keep people attached to Taisekiji and
the Soka Gakkai. It has nothing to do with the faith and practice of
the Lotus Sutra as Nichiren intended it.
The glorification of the "fake mandala", the "dai-Gohonzon", which,
according to the Taisekaji priests, "renders all authentic Nichiren
Gohonzons worthless" (the exact words of Nichi-u, the 9th High Priest
who first introduced it, two hundred years after Nichiren's death),
is
doubly pernicious because it cuts off the connection between the
believer, the real Nichiren and his authentic representation of the
Gohonzon.
If you wish to experience authentic Nichiren Buddhism based firmly
on the Lotus Sutra and the writings of Nichiren Daishonin and rapidly
attain Buddhahood, I encourage you to try the practice for ninety
days. I will assist you any way I can. I will send you sutra books,
and the Tradition of Nichiren Doctrine for free, and will help you to
receive a Gohonzon.
(An essay  based on the writings of Graham Lamont and edited by me).


Very funny, like you!

cmk
M***@rochester.rr.com
2008-11-01 07:11:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by cmk
Post by M***@rochester.rr.com
"KEMPON HOKKE" means "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra." It is the orthodox Hokke (Lotus Sutra) sect, as established
by Nichiren Daishonin in Japan.
The Kempon Hokke-USA is the overseas lay organization of the Kempon
Hokke of Japan. Kempon Hokke of Japan derives its teachings directly
from Nichiren, and was officially founded by Nichi-ju, (originally
named Gemmyo), a Tendai priest who had converted to the exclusive
teachings of the Lotus Sutra and Nichirenwhen he was sixty-six years
old after reading two writings of Nichiren, The Opening of the Eyes
and Practicing According to the Preachings. He founded the head
temple, Myomanji, in Kyoto and various other temples. Kempon Hokke is
known for it's orthodox approach to Nichiren's teachings and for it's
emphasis on scholastic study of the Lotus Sutra and the works of
Nichiren. It discourages viewpoints that depart from the true
intentions of Nichiren and those that minimize the study of the Lotus
Sutra. Even as early as Nichi-juu's time, there were many distortions
of Nichiren's basic doctrines. There were many forgeries attributed
to Nichiren and there were other traditions based on "secret
transmissions" that had no basis in historical or doctrinal reality.
Kempon Hokke means, "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra" and this teaching derives from the "Hokkekyo" (Lotus Sutra),
the works of T'ien-t'ai(538-597 AD) of China, Dengyo (767-822 AD) of
Japan, and especially by Nichiren Daishonin (1222-1282) of Japan.
Nichiren Daishonin distilled the teaching into the formula "Namu myo
ho renge kyo" (the title of the Lotus Sutra), established the supreme
mandala called the "Gohonzon", and wrote many treatises on the
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, especially as it relates to the present
age.
There are many sects and organizations that invoke Nichiren's name
and adopt aspects of his teachings, but few keep his doctrines intact
and actually try to practice them, just as Nichiren mandated.
For example, the Taisekiji (Fuji Ha) sect and the modern day
Soka Gakkai utilize the "daimoku" in a truncated form (they have
abbreviated the chant by changing "Namu" to "Nam") and they have
replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni, as described in the 16th
Chapter of the Lotus Sutra, with Nichiren himself, something that
Nichiren never advocated. This idea did not appear until the 17th
century, hundreds of years after Nichiren's death. Likewise, they
have created an "ita Mandala" (board or plank mandala) to replace
all authenticated Nichiren Gohonzons (written in Nichiren's own
hand).
The so-called "dai-Gohonzon" did not appear until 1488, more than
two centuries after Nichiren's death. The handwriting and composition
of the "dai-Gohonzon" is highly suspect. Taisekiji bases it's
teachings
on "secret oral transmissions" and many forged documents. During
and after Nichiren's death, many Buddhist teachers used the principle
of "secret oral transmissions" to justify their teachings. It has led
to
many twisted interpretations of Nichiren's doctrine.
In the Kempon Hokke, there are no such secret transmissions. The
true transmission or succession lies in the scrolls of the Lotus
Sutra
and is transmitted directly from the Original Buddha, found in the
Lotus Sutra, to the believer. This principle is called "kyokan sojo".
There is no special secret doctrine handed to one disciple alone.
There is no intermediary between the believer and the Lotus Sutra.
When one takes faith in the Lotus Sutra, as elucidated by Nichiren
himself (and we must base this on his authentic writings, rejecting
all forgeries) then we have the true succession from the eternal
Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the 16th Chapter of the the Lotus
Sutra, to the believer directly. Those who place their faith
in "secret transmissions" outside of the words of Nichiren and the
Lotus Sutra are likely to be fooled by spiritual tyrants. Any faith
in an external hierarchy or "succession" (Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
are the best examples) places the teaching and the benefits outside
of the individual practitioner. Nichiren admonished his followers
to "never seek this teaching outside of yourself". He often quoted
the Nirvana Sutra ("Daihatsu-nehan-gyo") which says "Rely on the
do not rely on consciousness alone." Likewise, Dengyo Daishi (founder
of the Tendai school in Japan and Nichiren's predecessor in
transmitting the teachings of the Lotus Sutra) said, " Place reliance
on the Buddhas's preaching: do not believe in oral transmissions"
(Hokke Shuku, DDZ, V. 3, 245.)
Nichiren's teachings are especially relevant for this time period
("Mappo" or "Age of Degeneration") in which secular and religious
struggles are rampant and Buddhist teachings, apart from the ultimate
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, lose their efficacy to lead to
Buddhahood. This degeneration was predicted in the "Daijikkyo Sutra"
(the Great Collection Sutra) where the decline was laid out in the
five "five-hundred-year" periods.
"Mappo" will exist until the coming of the next historical Buddha,
Maitreya (also called "Ajita"). In these subsequent "five-hundred-
year" periods, all buddhist sutras preached before the Hokkekyo
(Lotus Sutra) will degenerate and whatever is left of these pre-
Hokkekyo teachings and their accompanying practices will be just an
empty shell. If these"provisional" sutras are followed and the Lotus
Sutra is discarded or disparaged, then the provisional teachings will
lead to "hell" in future lifetimes. In such simplistic terms this
kind of karmic retribution seems too apocalyptic, but the predictions
are rooted in the deepest realms of Buddhist introspections, far
beyond the meditative capacity of people in a degenerate age. Truly,
the ultimate reality can only be shared between Buddhas because
common mortals are swayed by the illusions that create the matrix of
mundane life.
The Lotus Sutra is the only vehicle to cross the sea of suffering and
end the cycle of birth-and-death. By faith in this ultimate teaching
of the Original Buddha, one is assured of Buddhahood, even though
understanding is not yet developed. Buddhahood is "ceded" by the
Original Buddha to the believer in the Lotus Sutra, one who practices
the chanting of the "daimoku" (great title) of "Namu myo ho renge
kyo". Since the illusions of the age is great and the shallowness of
the beings is inherent, the "medicine" of the Lotus Sutra is profound
yet simple.
The Lotus Sutra and, more particularly, the essence of the Lotus
Sutra or the "daimoku" ("Namu myo ho renge kyo") will spread at the
time of struggle and destruction, precisely when other Buddhist
teachings have lost their curative powers. The text of the Lotus
Sutra clearly indicates that even when the other buddhist teachings
disappear, the Great Pure ("White") Dharma of the Lotus Sutra will be
propagated over the world, according to the principle of "correct
time" (i.e. our present age). It is the "medicine" to cure the ills
of this time period.
In this Degenerate age, Buddhahood is only assured through faith in
the Lotus Sutra. Faith in the pre-Lotus Sutra teachings can only lead
to the hell realm and less frequently to the realm of hunger and
animality (the Three Lower Worlds). The One Vehicle of the Lotus
Sutra is the path to rapidly lessen our karmic hindrances accumulated
from countless lifetimes of ignorance, anger and stupidity.
In all other sutras, the historical Shakyamuni is shown to have first
attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in India three thousand
years ago and is the one who preaches the provisional teachings
and who answers questions according to the capacities of the
audience.
In the Lotus Sutra, the historical Shakyamuni reveals his true
identity as the Original Buddha, enlightened since before time
without beginning. This transcendent Original Buddha declares that
his enlightenment under the Bodhi tree was a "skillful means" to lead
people to universal enlightenment. Likewise, the Buddha's death
("Nirvana") too, is a "skillful means" to bring people to the
ultimate
teaching found only in the depths of the Lotus Sutra. In reality, the
Buddha has always been enlightened and he never dies but exists even
now and forever. The cycle of life-and-death is an illusion that
imprisons sentient beings in the "Saha" (triple) world, our world of
endurance and suffering.
The ultimate reality (which is depicted in Nichiren's mandala, the
"Gohonzon") is a transcendent, timeless and deathless enlightenment
that is the legacy of all sentient beings. Faith in the Lotus Sutra
immediately gives us the "cause and effect" accumulation of the
Buddha's merits and practice. Since it is the teaching of the
Original Buddha, it is "difficult to believe and difficult to
accept", unlike the provisional sutras, which where preached
according to the capacities of the listeners. However, it is the
direct path to Buddhahood.
Taisekiji (the Fuji Sect) has spawned Nichiren Shoshu and Soka
Gakkai. The latter is a lay organization that has separated itself
from Nichiren Shoshu (the official sect name of Taisekiji). The
"theology" of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai is far removed from the
original teachings of Nichiren. In truth, they derive their doctrines
from later teachers. These later abbots of Taisekiji adopted the
popular trends of the Muromachi Period. These were the trends of
"chuko Tendai" (medieval Tendai). These schools, therefore, possess a
particular vocabulary and doctrine that set it apart from the Kempon
Hokke, the Buddha founded sect. Heavily influenced by the Muromachi
ideas of "original enlightenment" and "you are the Buddha just as you
are", they developed several peculiar teachings, like the
unenlightened worldling is the Original Buddha, the teacher of
Shakyamuni Buddha. Although, the idea of "original enlightenment" was
used by Dengyo and Nichiren, it was used in an extemely cautious
manner. By the time of the late Muromachi, these terms had come to
mean someting quite different and to set itself apart from the
traditional Nichiren sects, Taisekaji readily adopted them.
In short, these ideas that form the basis of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
"theology" were developed long after Nichiren and his immediate
successors died. These cunning abbots of Taisekiji not only came up
with viewpoints that reflected their own opinions, rather than
Nichiren's, but when those opinions conflicted with Nichiren's words,
Taisekiji would either re-interpret or alter Nichiren Daishonin's
words. The 9th abbot, Nichi-u who died of white leprosy first
revealed the "dai-Gohonzon" to the world, in 1488. The 26th abbot,
Nichikan wrote many works stating, in effect, "Nichiren said this,
but he really meant something else". He re-interpreted Nichiren's
words to conform to his viewpoint.
A modern example of something like this, in the Western context, is
Emanuel Swedenborg who claimed to have experienced supernatural
visions,and, according to the "instructions" that he received, he
wrote sweeping allegorical interpretations of the scriptures. Joseph
Smith and the Mormon Church is another example of such "latter day"
re-interpretation of earlier scripture.
They replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the Lotus Sutra,
with Nichiren or in the case of the Soka Gakkai who confuses the
Buddha and the Law, with Namu Myoho renge kyo. In the authentic
Gosho ("writings" ), Nichiren identifies the True Original Eternal
Buddha as Shakyamuni Buddha. Nichiren carried a statue of Shakyamuni
with him until the day he died. Taisekiji attempts to overcome the
teaching of Nichiren on the identity the "Eternal Buddha" by stating
that he really meant himself but was too humble to come out and say
it. There is not even a hint of this in the Lotus Sutra or the
writings of Nichiren.
Neither can they be found in the writings of his immediate disciples,
even Nikko who founded Taisekiji and only spent 18 months there. He
spent the next 36 years of his life at Kitayama Hommonji, where most
of his authentic works are kept. He died there in 1333, the same year
his disciple, Nichimoku, died. Nikko never returned to Taisekiji once
he
departed.
If the so-called "dai-Gohonzon" existed at that time, then Nikko
never
mentioned it nor did he return to Taisekiji to view it again. Nikko is
buried
at Kitayama Hommonji and his grave faces Minobu, the resting place of
Nichiren Daishonin.
In the "Rissho Ankoku Ron" and the other major writings, Nichiren
stated repeatedly that the troubles of Japan stemmed from having
abandoned the Original Buddha Shakyamuni and having replaced
him with other Buddhas, such as Dainichi, Yakushi, and Amida Buddha.
It is inconceivablethat Nichiren would warn against abandoning the
Eternal Shakyamuni, only to later have Taisekiji abbots replace this
Eternal Shakyamuni with Nichiren himself! One only has to read the
words of Nichiren to realize how inconsistent this idea is with
Nichiren's most basic beliefs.
The first mention of the idea of "Nichiren as True Buddha" surfaces
in the 17th Century, by Nissho. A great many forgeries have been
created within Taisekiji to bolster their claims whichgo against the
words of Nichiren. Even in the "Major Works of Nichiren", translated
by Soka Gakkai, the constant references that Nichiren makes to
the "Eternal Shakyamuni" are heavily footnoted or altered to claim
Nichiren was really referring to himself.
"Casting off" the Eternal Shakyamuni Buddha pollutes the Nichiren
faith. It stems the flow of benefit and cuts off the rewards of the
Lotus Sutra. What is left is a imitation of what Nichiren actually
believedand practiced. When the Eternal Shakyamuni is re-introduced
into the practice of the believer, the real benefits and "profound
joy" of chanting is brought back to life. Altering this this key
component developed by Nichiren, the faith and practice of Taisekiji
and Soka Gakkai becomes a counterfeit ritual that merely gives the
illusion of benefit.
Likewise, the tendency to "deify" either the current High Priest, or
Daisaku Ikeda is a crutch to keep people attached to Taisekiji and
the Soka Gakkai. It has nothing to do with the faith and practice of
the Lotus Sutra as Nichiren intended it.
The glorification of the "fake mandala", the "dai-Gohonzon", which,
according to the Taisekaji priests, "renders all authentic Nichiren
Gohonzons worthless" (the exact words of Nichi-u, the 9th High Priest
who first introduced it, two hundred years after Nichiren's death),
is
doubly pernicious because it cuts off the connection between the
believer, the real Nichiren and his authentic representation of the
Gohonzon.
If you wish to experience authentic Nichiren Buddhism based firmly
on the Lotus Sutra and the writings of Nichiren Daishonin and rapidly
attain Buddhahood, I encourage you to try the practice for ninety
days. I will assist you any way I can. I will send you sutra books,
and the Tradition of Nichiren Doctrine for free, and will help you to
receive a Gohonzon.
(An essay  based on the writings of Graham Lamont and edited by me).
http://youtu.be/D5e_IjrhVsk
Very funny, like you!
cmk
Actually that is one of my favorite videos.

Mark
Julian
2008-11-01 08:28:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by M***@rochester.rr.com
Post by cmk
Post by M***@rochester.rr.com
"KEMPON HOKKE" means "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra." It is the orthodox Hokke (Lotus Sutra) sect, as established
by Nichiren Daishonin in Japan.
The Kempon Hokke-USA is the overseas lay organization of the Kempon
Hokke of Japan. Kempon Hokke of Japan derives its teachings directly
from Nichiren, and was officially founded by Nichi-ju, (originally
named Gemmyo), a Tendai priest who had converted to the exclusive
teachings of the Lotus Sutra and Nichirenwhen he was sixty-six years
old after reading two writings of Nichiren, The Opening of the Eyes
and Practicing According to the Preachings. He founded the head
temple, Myomanji, in Kyoto and various other temples. Kempon Hokke is
known for it's orthodox approach to Nichiren's teachings and for it's
emphasis on scholastic study of the Lotus Sutra and the works of
Nichiren. It discourages viewpoints that depart from the true
intentions of Nichiren and those that minimize the study of the Lotus
Sutra. Even as early as Nichi-juu's time, there were many distortions
of Nichiren's basic doctrines. There were many forgeries attributed
to Nichiren and there were other traditions based on "secret
transmissions" that had no basis in historical or doctrinal reality.
Kempon Hokke means, "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra" and this teaching derives from the "Hokkekyo" (Lotus Sutra),
the works of T'ien-t'ai(538-597 AD) of China, Dengyo (767-822 AD) of
Japan, and especially by Nichiren Daishonin (1222-1282) of Japan.
Nichiren Daishonin distilled the teaching into the formula "Namu myo
ho renge kyo" (the title of the Lotus Sutra), established the supreme
mandala called the "Gohonzon", and wrote many treatises on the
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, especially as it relates to the present
age.
There are many sects and organizations that invoke Nichiren's name
and adopt aspects of his teachings, but few keep his doctrines intact
and actually try to practice them, just as Nichiren mandated.
For example, the Taisekiji (Fuji Ha) sect and the modern day
Soka Gakkai utilize the "daimoku" in a truncated form (they have
abbreviated the chant by changing "Namu" to "Nam") and they have
replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni, as described in the 16th
Chapter of the Lotus Sutra, with Nichiren himself, something that
Nichiren never advocated. This idea did not appear until the 17th
century, hundreds of years after Nichiren's death. Likewise, they
have created an "ita Mandala" (board or plank mandala) to replace
all authenticated Nichiren Gohonzons (written in Nichiren's own
hand).
The so-called "dai-Gohonzon" did not appear until 1488, more than
two centuries after Nichiren's death. The handwriting and composition
of the "dai-Gohonzon" is highly suspect. Taisekiji bases it's
teachings
on "secret oral transmissions" and many forged documents. During
and after Nichiren's death, many Buddhist teachers used the principle
of "secret oral transmissions" to justify their teachings. It has led
to
many twisted interpretations of Nichiren's doctrine.
In the Kempon Hokke, there are no such secret transmissions. The
true transmission or succession lies in the scrolls of the Lotus
Sutra
and is transmitted directly from the Original Buddha, found in the
Lotus Sutra, to the believer. This principle is called "kyokan sojo".
There is no special secret doctrine handed to one disciple alone.
There is no intermediary between the believer and the Lotus Sutra.
When one takes faith in the Lotus Sutra, as elucidated by Nichiren
himself (and we must base this on his authentic writings, rejecting
all forgeries) then we have the true succession from the eternal
Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the 16th Chapter of the the Lotus
Sutra, to the believer directly. Those who place their faith
in "secret transmissions" outside of the words of Nichiren and the
Lotus Sutra are likely to be fooled by spiritual tyrants. Any faith
in an external hierarchy or "succession" (Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
are the best examples) places the teaching and the benefits outside
of the individual practitioner. Nichiren admonished his followers
to "never seek this teaching outside of yourself". He often quoted
the Nirvana Sutra ("Daihatsu-nehan-gyo") which says "Rely on the
do not rely on consciousness alone." Likewise, Dengyo Daishi (founder
of the Tendai school in Japan and Nichiren's predecessor in
transmitting the teachings of the Lotus Sutra) said, " Place reliance
on the Buddhas's preaching: do not believe in oral transmissions"
(Hokke Shuku, DDZ, V. 3, 245.)
Nichiren's teachings are especially relevant for this time period
("Mappo" or "Age of Degeneration") in which secular and religious
struggles are rampant and Buddhist teachings, apart from the ultimate
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, lose their efficacy to lead to
Buddhahood. This degeneration was predicted in the "Daijikkyo Sutra"
(the Great Collection Sutra) where the decline was laid out in the
five "five-hundred-year" periods.
"Mappo" will exist until the coming of the next historical Buddha,
Maitreya (also called "Ajita"). In these subsequent "five-hundred-
year" periods, all buddhist sutras preached before the Hokkekyo
(Lotus Sutra) will degenerate and whatever is left of these pre-
Hokkekyo teachings and their accompanying practices will be just an
empty shell. If these"provisional" sutras are followed and the Lotus
Sutra is discarded or disparaged, then the provisional teachings will
lead to "hell" in future lifetimes. In such simplistic terms this
kind of karmic retribution seems too apocalyptic, but the predictions
are rooted in the deepest realms of Buddhist introspections, far
beyond the meditative capacity of people in a degenerate age. Truly,
the ultimate reality can only be shared between Buddhas because
common mortals are swayed by the illusions that create the matrix of
mundane life.
The Lotus Sutra is the only vehicle to cross the sea of suffering and
end the cycle of birth-and-death. By faith in this ultimate teaching
of the Original Buddha, one is assured of Buddhahood, even though
understanding is not yet developed. Buddhahood is "ceded" by the
Original Buddha to the believer in the Lotus Sutra, one who practices
the chanting of the "daimoku" (great title) of "Namu myo ho renge
kyo". Since the illusions of the age is great and the shallowness of
the beings is inherent, the "medicine" of the Lotus Sutra is profound
yet simple.
The Lotus Sutra and, more particularly, the essence of the Lotus
Sutra or the "daimoku" ("Namu myo ho renge kyo") will spread at the
time of struggle and destruction, precisely when other Buddhist
teachings have lost their curative powers. The text of the Lotus
Sutra clearly indicates that even when the other buddhist teachings
disappear, the Great Pure ("White") Dharma of the Lotus Sutra will be
propagated over the world, according to the principle of "correct
time" (i.e. our present age). It is the "medicine" to cure the ills
of this time period.
In this Degenerate age, Buddhahood is only assured through faith in
the Lotus Sutra. Faith in the pre-Lotus Sutra teachings can only lead
to the hell realm and less frequently to the realm of hunger and
animality (the Three Lower Worlds). The One Vehicle of the Lotus
Sutra is the path to rapidly lessen our karmic hindrances accumulated
from countless lifetimes of ignorance, anger and stupidity.
In all other sutras, the historical Shakyamuni is shown to have first
attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in India three thousand
years ago and is the one who preaches the provisional teachings
and who answers questions according to the capacities of the
audience.
In the Lotus Sutra, the historical Shakyamuni reveals his true
identity as the Original Buddha, enlightened since before time
without beginning. This transcendent Original Buddha declares that
his enlightenment under the Bodhi tree was a "skillful means" to lead
people to universal enlightenment. Likewise, the Buddha's death
("Nirvana") too, is a "skillful means" to bring people to the
ultimate
teaching found only in the depths of the Lotus Sutra. In reality, the
Buddha has always been enlightened and he never dies but exists even
now and forever. The cycle of life-and-death is an illusion that
imprisons sentient beings in the "Saha" (triple) world, our world of
endurance and suffering.
The ultimate reality (which is depicted in Nichiren's mandala, the
"Gohonzon") is a transcendent, timeless and deathless enlightenment
that is the legacy of all sentient beings. Faith in the Lotus Sutra
immediately gives us the "cause and effect" accumulation of the
Buddha's merits and practice. Since it is the teaching of the
Original Buddha, it is "difficult to believe and difficult to
accept", unlike the provisional sutras, which where preached
according to the capacities of the listeners. However, it is the
direct path to Buddhahood.
Taisekiji (the Fuji Sect) has spawned Nichiren Shoshu and Soka
Gakkai. The latter is a lay organization that has separated itself
from Nichiren Shoshu (the official sect name of Taisekiji). The
"theology" of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai is far removed from the
original teachings of Nichiren. In truth, they derive their doctrines
from later teachers. These later abbots of Taisekiji adopted the
popular trends of the Muromachi Period. These were the trends of
"chuko Tendai" (medieval Tendai). These schools, therefore, possess a
particular vocabulary and doctrine that set it apart from the Kempon
Hokke, the Buddha founded sect. Heavily influenced by the Muromachi
ideas of "original enlightenment" and "you are the Buddha just as you
are", they developed several peculiar teachings, like the
unenlightened worldling is the Original Buddha, the teacher of
Shakyamuni Buddha. Although, the idea of "original enlightenment" was
used by Dengyo and Nichiren, it was used in an extemely cautious
manner. By the time of the late Muromachi, these terms had come to
mean someting quite different and to set itself apart from the
traditional Nichiren sects, Taisekaji readily adopted them.
In short, these ideas that form the basis of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
"theology" were developed long after Nichiren and his immediate
successors died. These cunning abbots of Taisekiji not only came up
with viewpoints that reflected their own opinions, rather than
Nichiren's, but when those opinions conflicted with Nichiren's words,
Taisekiji would either re-interpret or alter Nichiren Daishonin's
words. The 9th abbot, Nichi-u who died of white leprosy first
revealed the "dai-Gohonzon" to the world, in 1488. The 26th abbot,
Nichikan wrote many works stating, in effect, "Nichiren said this,
but he really meant something else". He re-interpreted Nichiren's
words to conform to his viewpoint.
A modern example of something like this, in the Western context, is
Emanuel Swedenborg who claimed to have experienced supernatural
visions,and, according to the "instructions" that he received, he
wrote sweeping allegorical interpretations of the scriptures. Joseph
Smith and the Mormon Church is another example of such "latter day"
re-interpretation of earlier scripture.
They replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the Lotus Sutra,
with Nichiren or in the case of the Soka Gakkai who confuses the
Buddha and the Law, with Namu Myoho renge kyo. In the authentic
Gosho ("writings" ), Nichiren identifies the True Original Eternal
Buddha as Shakyamuni Buddha. Nichiren carried a statue of Shakyamuni
with him until the day he died. Taisekiji attempts to overcome the
teaching of Nichiren on the identity the "Eternal Buddha" by stating
that he really meant himself but was too humble to come out and say
it. There is not even a hint of this in the Lotus Sutra or the
writings of Nichiren.
Neither can they be found in the writings of his immediate disciples,
even Nikko who founded Taisekiji and only spent 18 months there. He
spent the next 36 years of his life at Kitayama Hommonji, where most
of his authentic works are kept. He died there in 1333, the same year
his disciple, Nichimoku, died. Nikko never returned to Taisekiji once
he
departed.
If the so-called "dai-Gohonzon" existed at that time, then Nikko
never
mentioned it nor did he return to Taisekiji to view it again. Nikko is
buried
at Kitayama Hommonji and his grave faces Minobu, the resting place of
Nichiren Daishonin.
In the "Rissho Ankoku Ron" and the other major writings, Nichiren
stated repeatedly that the troubles of Japan stemmed from having
abandoned the Original Buddha Shakyamuni and having replaced
him with other Buddhas, such as Dainichi, Yakushi, and Amida Buddha.
It is inconceivablethat Nichiren would warn against abandoning the
Eternal Shakyamuni, only to later have Taisekiji abbots replace this
Eternal Shakyamuni with Nichiren himself! One only has to read the
words of Nichiren to realize how inconsistent this idea is with
Nichiren's most basic beliefs.
The first mention of the idea of "Nichiren as True Buddha" surfaces
in the 17th Century, by Nissho. A great many forgeries have been
created within Taisekiji to bolster their claims whichgo against the
words of Nichiren. Even in the "Major Works of Nichiren", translated
by Soka Gakkai, the constant references that Nichiren makes to
the "Eternal Shakyamuni" are heavily footnoted or altered to claim
Nichiren was really referring to himself.
"Casting off" the Eternal Shakyamuni Buddha pollutes the Nichiren
faith. It stems the flow of benefit and cuts off the rewards of the
Lotus Sutra. What is left is a imitation of what Nichiren actually
believedand practiced. When the Eternal Shakyamuni is re-introduced
into the practice of the believer, the real benefits and "profound
joy" of chanting is brought back to life. Altering this this key
component developed by Nichiren, the faith and practice of Taisekiji
and Soka Gakkai becomes a counterfeit ritual that merely gives the
illusion of benefit.
Likewise, the tendency to "deify" either the current High Priest, or
Daisaku Ikeda is a crutch to keep people attached to Taisekiji and
the Soka Gakkai. It has nothing to do with the faith and practice of
the Lotus Sutra as Nichiren intended it.
The glorification of the "fake mandala", the "dai-Gohonzon", which,
according to the Taisekaji priests, "renders all authentic Nichiren
Gohonzons worthless" (the exact words of Nichi-u, the 9th High Priest
who first introduced it, two hundred years after Nichiren's death),
is
doubly pernicious because it cuts off the connection between the
believer, the real Nichiren and his authentic representation of the
Gohonzon.
If you wish to experience authentic Nichiren Buddhism based firmly
on the Lotus Sutra and the writings of Nichiren Daishonin and rapidly
attain Buddhahood, I encourage you to try the practice for ninety
days. I will assist you any way I can. I will send you sutra books,
and the Tradition of Nichiren Doctrine for free, and will help you to
receive a Gohonzon.
(An essay based on the writings of Graham Lamont and edited by me).
http://youtu.be/D5e_IjrhVsk
Very funny, like you!
cmk
Actually that is one of my favorite videos.
You remind me of the Black Knight, thanks.

cmk
2008-11-04 02:39:43 UTC
Permalink
Post by M***@rochester.rr.com
"KEMPON HOKKE" means "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra." It is the orthodox Hokke (Lotus Sutra) sect, as established
by Nichiren Daishonin in Japan.
The Kempon Hokke-USA is the overseas lay organization of the Kempon
Hokke of Japan. Kempon Hokke of Japan derives its teachings directly
from Nichiren, and was officially founded by Nichi-ju, (originally
named Gemmyo), a Tendai priest who had converted to the exclusive
teachings of the Lotus Sutra and Nichirenwhen he was sixty-six years
old after reading two writings of Nichiren, The Opening of the Eyes
and Practicing According to the Preachings. He founded the head
temple, Myomanji, in Kyoto and various other temples. Kempon Hokke is
known for it's orthodox approach to Nichiren's teachings and for it's
emphasis on scholastic study of the Lotus Sutra and the works of
Nichiren. It discourages viewpoints that depart from the true
intentions of Nichiren and those that minimize the study of the Lotus
Sutra. Even as early as Nichi-juu's time, there were many distortions
of Nichiren's basic doctrines. There were many forgeries attributed
to Nichiren and there were other traditions based on "secret
transmissions" that had no basis in historical or doctrinal reality.
Kempon Hokke means, "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra" and this teaching derives from the "Hokkekyo" (Lotus Sutra),
the works of T'ien-t'ai(538-597 AD) of China, Dengyo (767-822 AD) of
Japan, and especially by Nichiren Daishonin (1222-1282) of Japan.
Nichiren Daishonin distilled the teaching into the formula "Namu myo
ho renge kyo" (the title of the Lotus Sutra), established the supreme
mandala called the "Gohonzon", and wrote many treatises on the
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, especially as it relates to the present
age.
There are many sects and organizations that invoke Nichiren's name
and adopt aspects of his teachings, but few keep his doctrines intact
and actually try to practice them, just as Nichiren mandated.
For example, the Taisekiji (Fuji Ha) sect and the modern day
Soka Gakkai utilize the "daimoku" in a truncated form (they have
abbreviated the chant by changing "Namu" to "Nam") and they have
replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni, as described in the 16th
Chapter of the Lotus Sutra, with Nichiren himself, something that
Nichiren never advocated. This idea did not appear until the 17th
century, hundreds of years after Nichiren's death. Likewise, they
have created an "ita Mandala" (board or plank mandala) to replace
all authenticated Nichiren Gohonzons (written in Nichiren's own
hand).
The so-called "dai-Gohonzon" did not appear until 1488, more than
two centuries after Nichiren's death. The handwriting and composition
of the "dai-Gohonzon" is highly suspect. Taisekiji bases it's
teachings
on "secret oral transmissions" and many forged documents. During
and after Nichiren's death, many Buddhist teachers used the principle
of "secret oral transmissions" to justify their teachings. It has led
to
many twisted interpretations of Nichiren's doctrine.
In the Kempon Hokke, there are no such secret transmissions. The
true transmission or succession lies in the scrolls of the Lotus
Sutra
and is transmitted directly from the Original Buddha, found in the
Lotus Sutra, to the believer. This principle is called "kyokan sojo".
There is no special secret doctrine handed to one disciple alone.
There is no intermediary between the believer and the Lotus Sutra.
When one takes faith in the Lotus Sutra, as elucidated by Nichiren
himself (and we must base this on his authentic writings, rejecting
all forgeries) then we have the true succession from the eternal
Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the 16th Chapter of the the Lotus
Sutra, to the believer directly. Those who place their faith
in "secret transmissions" outside of the words of Nichiren and the
Lotus Sutra are likely to be fooled by spiritual tyrants. Any faith
in an external hierarchy or "succession" (Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
are the best examples) places the teaching and the benefits outside
of the individual practitioner. Nichiren admonished his followers
to "never seek this teaching outside of yourself". He often quoted
the Nirvana Sutra ("Daihatsu-nehan-gyo") which says "Rely on the
do not rely on consciousness alone." Likewise, Dengyo Daishi (founder
of the Tendai school in Japan and Nichiren's predecessor in
transmitting the teachings of the Lotus Sutra) said, " Place reliance
on the Buddhas's preaching: do not believe in oral transmissions"
(Hokke Shuku, DDZ, V. 3, 245.)
Nichiren's teachings are especially relevant for this time period
("Mappo" or "Age of Degeneration") in which secular and religious
struggles are rampant and Buddhist teachings, apart from the ultimate
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, lose their efficacy to lead to
Buddhahood. This degeneration was predicted in the "Daijikkyo Sutra"
(the Great Collection Sutra) where the decline was laid out in the
five "five-hundred-year" periods.
"Mappo" will exist until the coming of the next historical Buddha,
Maitreya (also called "Ajita"). In these subsequent "five-hundred-
year" periods, all buddhist sutras preached before the Hokkekyo
(Lotus Sutra) will degenerate and whatever is left of these pre-
Hokkekyo teachings and their accompanying practices will be just an
empty shell. If these"provisional" sutras are followed and the Lotus
Sutra is discarded or disparaged, then the provisional teachings will
lead to "hell" in future lifetimes. In such simplistic terms this
kind of karmic retribution seems too apocalyptic, but the predictions
are rooted in the deepest realms of Buddhist introspections, far
beyond the meditative capacity of people in a degenerate age. Truly,
the ultimate reality can only be shared between Buddhas because
common mortals are swayed by the illusions that create the matrix of
mundane life.
The Lotus Sutra is the only vehicle to cross the sea of suffering and
end the cycle of birth-and-death. By faith in this ultimate teaching
of the Original Buddha, one is assured of Buddhahood, even though
understanding is not yet developed. Buddhahood is "ceded" by the
Original Buddha to the believer in the Lotus Sutra, one who practices
the chanting of the "daimoku" (great title) of "Namu myo ho renge
kyo". Since the illusions of the age is great and the shallowness of
the beings is inherent, the "medicine" of the Lotus Sutra is profound
yet simple.
The Lotus Sutra and, more particularly, the essence of the Lotus
Sutra or the "daimoku" ("Namu myo ho renge kyo") will spread at the
time of struggle and destruction, precisely when other Buddhist
teachings have lost their curative powers. The text of the Lotus
Sutra clearly indicates that even when the other buddhist teachings
disappear, the Great Pure ("White") Dharma of the Lotus Sutra will be
propagated over the world, according to the principle of "correct
time" (i.e. our present age). It is the "medicine" to cure the ills
of this time period.
In this Degenerate age, Buddhahood is only assured through faith in
the Lotus Sutra. Faith in the pre-Lotus Sutra teachings can only lead
to the hell realm and less frequently to the realm of hunger and
animality (the Three Lower Worlds). The One Vehicle of the Lotus
Sutra is the path to rapidly lessen our karmic hindrances accumulated
from countless lifetimes of ignorance, anger and stupidity.
In all other sutras, the historical Shakyamuni is shown to have first
attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in India three thousand
years ago and is the one who preaches the provisional teachings
and who answers questions according to the capacities of the
audience.
In the Lotus Sutra, the historical Shakyamuni reveals his true
identity as the Original Buddha, enlightened since before time
without beginning. This transcendent Original Buddha declares that
his enlightenment under the Bodhi tree was a "skillful means" to lead
people to universal enlightenment. Likewise, the Buddha's death
("Nirvana") too, is a "skillful means" to bring people to the
ultimate
teaching found only in the depths of the Lotus Sutra. In reality, the
Buddha has always been enlightened and he never dies but exists even
now and forever. The cycle of life-and-death is an illusion that
imprisons sentient beings in the "Saha" (triple) world, our world of
endurance and suffering.
The ultimate reality (which is depicted in Nichiren's mandala, the
"Gohonzon") is a transcendent, timeless and deathless enlightenment
that is the legacy of all sentient beings. Faith in the Lotus Sutra
immediately gives us the "cause and effect" accumulation of the
Buddha's merits and practice. Since it is the teaching of the
Original Buddha, it is "difficult to believe and difficult to
accept", unlike the provisional sutras, which where preached
according to the capacities of the listeners. However, it is the
direct path to Buddhahood.
Taisekiji (the Fuji Sect) has spawned Nichiren Shoshu and Soka
Gakkai. The latter is a lay organization that has separated itself
from Nichiren Shoshu (the official sect name of Taisekiji). The
"theology" of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai is far removed from the
original teachings of Nichiren. In
...
read more »- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
1. Hokke Kempon is all about slandering the SGI and I guess
backing the NST these days. You posted some websites from
hometown AOL, first of all they have all been shut
down. So what do you want me to read? I see nothing.

2. Any copies of SGI defending themselves has been
due to NST sending accusations their way and renegade sects
backing NST due to their paranoia.

3. Hokke Kempon and all the other Nichiren sects started out
breaking off of the NST and SGI, so why are you now defending
the Nichiren Shoshu again? NST doesn't back you so why are
the sects backing NST? Because SGI backs the U.S.?
Could that be why you don't back SGI? Is this a Japanese
Priesthood decision like it was in WW2 to back Nichiren Shu?

4. Does your religion feel the same way
about killing Americans?

5. What kind of people try to shakubuku based on making others
look bad, it seems vaguely familar as a political tactic, not
encouraging someone to chant.

6. With the bars on windows, small sects after years of practice,
and other situations besides constant slanderous negativity, why
do you think your religion will grow if it hasn't all these years?
My dad was right when he said "Hope springs eternal" about
you guys!

7. Don't you think everyone knows who practicies in these
organizations and knows what they want to accomplish?

Puhlease! We weren't born yesterday!

cmk
Illarraza
2008-11-04 14:00:43 UTC
Permalink
Dear cmk;

You write:

"1.  Hokke Kempon is all about slandering the SGI and I guess
backing the NST these days.  You posted some websites from
hometown AOL, first of all they have all been shut
down.  So what do you want me to read?  I see nothing."

That is good. my prayers have been answered.


"2. Any copies of SGI defending themselves has been
due to NST sending accusations their way and renegade sects
backing NST due to their paranoia.:

I have been and remain a staunch critic of the Nichiren Shoshu.
However, when the house is burning you put out the fire first and then
attend to your other problems.

"3.  Hokke Kempon and all the other Nichiren sects started out
breaking off of the NST and SGI, so why are you now defending
the Nichiren Shoshu again?  NST doesn't back you so why are
the sects backing NST?  Because SGI backs the U.S.?
Could that be why you don't back SGI?  Is this a Japanese
Priesthood decision like it was in WW2 to back Nichiren Shu?"

Denise, I am a poor historian but you are pathetic and make no sense.

"4. Does your religion feel the same way about killing Americans?"

I don't even kill millipedes. Kempon Hokke practitioners unlike SGI
members are True buddhists. However, I will defend what the Buddha has
entrusted to us andi will defend my fellow Kempon Hokke believers from
any direct threat to their lives. Fortunately there are no such direct
threats in this country or in Japan. On the other hand, neither the
kempon Hokke nor the SGI can openly practice in countries such as
Saudi Arabia and Yemen.

"5. What kind of people try to shakubuku based on making others
look bad, it seems vaguely familar as a political tactic, not
encouraging someone to chant.

I just point out the SGI warts. Nothing I could do could make them any
uglier than they already are.

"6. With the bars on windows, small sects after years of practice,
and other situations besides constant slanderous negativity, why
do you think your religion will grow if it hasn't all these years?
My dad was right when he said "Hope springs eternal" about
you guys!"

Everything is a numbers game to the SGI. Nichiren taught quality was
as important, if not more, than quantity. Nichiren also taught that
the provisional teachings always spread before the true teachings.

"7.  Don't you think everyone knows who practicies in these
organizations and knows what they want to accomplish?

You couldn't even begin to fathom it.

"Puhlease!  We weren't born yesterday!"

Sometimes, you sound as if you were (born yesterday0.

Mark
juanjo
2008-11-05 21:40:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by Illarraza
3.  Hokke Kempon and all the other Nichiren sects started out
breaking off of the NST and SGI, so why are you now defending
the Nichiren Shoshu again?  NST doesn't back you so why are
the sects backing NST?  Because SGI backs the U.S.?
Could that be why you don't back SGI?  Is this a Japanese
Priesthood decision like it was in WW2 to back Nichiren Shu?
I really think you need to actually read some history instead of
making it up as you go along. The Nichiren Shu [and its constituent
parts] predates the Soka Gakkai by centuries, as does the Nichiren
Shoshu and the Kempon Hokke. The Nichiren Shu has doctrinal
differences with the Nichiren Shoshu but we do not go around
publishing pamphlets accusing them of all sorts of nefarious actions.
We do not photoshop photographs to make them appear to show what they
do not, like Nichiren Shoshu priests cavorting with geishas. We do
not send out people to photograph and videotape their events. We
don't organize SS units to chant for the closing of their temples and
the expulsion of their priests from the countries where they reside.
We do not harass their members in the streets and in their homes. We
do not post lies about them on the internet. But the Soka Gakkai does
do things of this sort.

Of course the Soka Gakkai also photoshops photographs to make them
appear as though the Nichiren Shu is doing things they are not doing.
Soka Gakkai leaders, like the Rubys, post lies on the internet
claiming that the Nichiren Shu sell pajamas with Gohonzon mandalas
printed on them. They make claims we torture small animals like foxes
and dogs, lies then repeated by Clown Boy Julian. They send letters
to Nichiren Shu members telling them that they may not attend
functions sponsored by the Soka Gakkai even if they are invited to
them. They tell their members that we will physically attack them and
beat them up if they attend our functions. They claim that Nichiren
Shu priests have gone to their cultural centers dressed in their robes
to harass SGI members. They misrepresent their own history as well as
that of the Nichiren Shu and Nichiren Shoshu to make them appear
somehow morally superior.

You may be amused to know that your sensei does not agree with you
about WWII. He has said so in print. Makaguchi opposed the
imposition of the Imperial Shinto Cult and was imprisoned for it but
he was not imprisoned for "backing the USA" or for being opposed to
the war itself. Of course you will choose to ignore the actual
reality of the historical evidence of this and repeat your lies
because you are incapable of anything else. But when you do people
will stand up and call you on your BS. That is not supporting one
sect or another. That is called standing up for the truth.

cmk
2008-10-28 06:02:49 UTC
Permalink
Post by M***@rochester.rr.com
"KEMPON HOKKE" means "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra." It is the orthodox Hokke (Lotus Sutra) sect, as established
by Nichiren Daishonin in Japan.
The Kempon Hokke-USA is the overseas lay organization of the Kempon
Hokke of Japan. Kempon Hokke of Japan derives its teachings directly
from Nichiren, and was officially founded by Nichi-ju, (originally
named Gemmyo), a Tendai priest who had converted to the exclusive
teachings of the Lotus Sutra and Nichirenwhen he was sixty-six years
old after reading two writings of Nichiren, The Opening of the Eyes
and Practicing According to the Preachings. He founded the head
temple, Myomanji, in Kyoto and various other temples. Kempon Hokke is
known for it's orthodox approach to Nichiren's teachings and for it's
emphasis on scholastic study of the Lotus Sutra and the works of
Nichiren. It discourages viewpoints that depart from the true
intentions of Nichiren and those that minimize the study of the Lotus
Sutra. Even as early as Nichi-juu's time, there were many distortions
of Nichiren's basic doctrines. There were many forgeries attributed
to Nichiren and there were other traditions based on "secret
transmissions" that had no basis in historical or doctrinal reality.
Kempon Hokke means, "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra" and this teaching derives from the "Hokkekyo" (Lotus Sutra),
the works of T'ien-t'ai(538-597 AD) of China, Dengyo (767-822 AD) of
Japan, and especially by Nichiren Daishonin (1222-1282) of Japan.
Nichiren Daishonin distilled the teaching into the formula "Namu myo
ho renge kyo" (the title of the Lotus Sutra), established the supreme
mandala called the "Gohonzon", and wrote many treatises on the
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, especially as it relates to the present
age.
There are many sects and organizations that invoke Nichiren's name
and adopt aspects of his teachings, but few keep his doctrines intact
and actually try to practice them, just as Nichiren mandated.
For example, the Taisekiji (Fuji Ha) sect and the modern day
Soka Gakkai utilize the "daimoku" in a truncated form (they have
abbreviated the chant by changing "Namu" to "Nam") and they have
replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni, as described in the 16th
Chapter of the Lotus Sutra, with Nichiren himself, something that
Nichiren never advocated. This idea did not appear until the 17th
century, hundreds of years after Nichiren's death. Likewise, they
have created an "ita Mandala" (board or plank mandala) to replace
all authenticated Nichiren Gohonzons (written in Nichiren's own
hand).
The so-called "dai-Gohonzon" did not appear until 1488, more than
two centuries after Nichiren's death. The handwriting and composition
of the "dai-Gohonzon" is highly suspect. Taisekiji bases it's
teachings
on "secret oral transmissions" and many forged documents. During
and after Nichiren's death, many Buddhist teachers used the principle
of "secret oral transmissions" to justify their teachings. It has led
to
many twisted interpretations of Nichiren's doctrine.
In the Kempon Hokke, there are no such secret transmissions. The
true transmission or succession lies in the scrolls of the Lotus
Sutra
and is transmitted directly from the Original Buddha, found in the
Lotus Sutra, to the believer. This principle is called "kyokan sojo".
There is no special secret doctrine handed to one disciple alone.
There is no intermediary between the believer and the Lotus Sutra.
When one takes faith in the Lotus Sutra, as elucidated by Nichiren
himself (and we must base this on his authentic writings, rejecting
all forgeries) then we have the true succession from the eternal
Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the 16th Chapter of the the Lotus
Sutra, to the believer directly. Those who place their faith
in "secret transmissions" outside of the words of Nichiren and the
Lotus Sutra are likely to be fooled by spiritual tyrants. Any faith
in an external hierarchy or "succession" (Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
are the best examples) places the teaching and the benefits outside
of the individual practitioner. Nichiren admonished his followers
to "never seek this teaching outside of yourself". He often quoted
the Nirvana Sutra ("Daihatsu-nehan-gyo") which says "Rely on the
do not rely on consciousness alone." Likewise, Dengyo Daishi (founder
of the Tendai school in Japan and Nichiren's predecessor in
transmitting the teachings of the Lotus Sutra) said, " Place reliance
on the Buddhas's preaching: do not believe in oral transmissions"
(Hokke Shuku, DDZ, V. 3, 245.)
Nichiren's teachings are especially relevant for this time period
("Mappo" or "Age of Degeneration") in which secular and religious
struggles are rampant and Buddhist teachings, apart from the ultimate
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, lose their efficacy to lead to
Buddhahood. This degeneration was predicted in the "Daijikkyo Sutra"
(the Great Collection Sutra) where the decline was laid out in the
five "five-hundred-year" periods.
"Mappo" will exist until the coming of the next historical Buddha,
Maitreya (also called "Ajita"). In these subsequent "five-hundred-
year" periods, all buddhist sutras preached before the Hokkekyo
(Lotus Sutra) will degenerate and whatever is left of these pre-
Hokkekyo teachings and their accompanying practices will be just an
empty shell. If these"provisional" sutras are followed and the Lotus
Sutra is discarded or disparaged, then the provisional teachings will
lead to "hell" in future lifetimes. In such simplistic terms this
kind of karmic retribution seems too apocalyptic, but the predictions
are rooted in the deepest realms of Buddhist introspections, far
beyond the meditative capacity of people in a degenerate age. Truly,
the ultimate reality can only be shared between Buddhas because
common mortals are swayed by the illusions that create the matrix of
mundane life.
The Lotus Sutra is the only vehicle to cross the sea of suffering and
end the cycle of birth-and-death. By faith in this ultimate teaching
of the Original Buddha, one is assured of Buddhahood, even though
understanding is not yet developed. Buddhahood is "ceded" by the
Original Buddha to the believer in the Lotus Sutra, one who practices
the chanting of the "daimoku" (great title) of "Namu myo ho renge
kyo". Since the illusions of the age is great and the shallowness of
the beings is inherent, the "medicine" of the Lotus Sutra is profound
yet simple.
The Lotus Sutra and, more particularly, the essence of the Lotus
Sutra or the "daimoku" ("Namu myo ho renge kyo") will spread at the
time of struggle and destruction, precisely when other Buddhist
teachings have lost their curative powers. The text of the Lotus
Sutra clearly indicates that even when the other buddhist teachings
disappear, the Great Pure ("White") Dharma of the Lotus Sutra will be
propagated over the world, according to the principle of "correct
time" (i.e. our present age). It is the "medicine" to cure the ills
of this time period.
In this Degenerate age, Buddhahood is only assured through faith in
the Lotus Sutra. Faith in the pre-Lotus Sutra teachings can only lead
to the hell realm and less frequently to the realm of hunger and
animality (the Three Lower Worlds). The One Vehicle of the Lotus
Sutra is the path to rapidly lessen our karmic hindrances accumulated
from countless lifetimes of ignorance, anger and stupidity.
In all other sutras, the historical Shakyamuni is shown to have first
attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in India three thousand
years ago and is the one who preaches the provisional teachings
and who answers questions according to the capacities of the
audience.
In the Lotus Sutra, the historical Shakyamuni reveals his true
identity as the Original Buddha, enlightened since before time
without beginning. This transcendent Original Buddha declares that
his enlightenment under the Bodhi tree was a "skillful means" to lead
people to universal enlightenment. Likewise, the Buddha's death
("Nirvana") too, is a "skillful means" to bring people to the
ultimate
teaching found only in the depths of the Lotus Sutra. In reality, the
Buddha has always been enlightened and he never dies but exists even
now and forever. The cycle of life-and-death is an illusion that
imprisons sentient beings in the "Saha" (triple) world, our world of
endurance and suffering.
The ultimate reality (which is depicted in Nichiren's mandala, the
"Gohonzon") is a transcendent, timeless and deathless enlightenment
that is the legacy of all sentient beings. Faith in the Lotus Sutra
immediately gives us the "cause and effect" accumulation of the
Buddha's merits and practice. Since it is the teaching of the
Original Buddha, it is "difficult to believe and difficult to
accept", unlike the provisional sutras, which where preached
according to the capacities of the listeners. However, it is the
direct path to Buddhahood.
Taisekiji (the Fuji Sect) has spawned Nichiren Shoshu and Soka
Gakkai. The latter is a lay organization that has separated itself
from Nichiren Shoshu (the official sect name of Taisekiji). The
"theology" of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai is far removed from the
original teachings of Nichiren. In truth, they derive their doctrines
from later teachers. These later abbots of Taisekiji adopted the
popular trends of the Muromachi Period. These were the trends of
"chuko Tendai" (medieval Tendai). These schools, therefore, possess a
particular vocabulary and doctrine that set it apart from the Kempon
Hokke, the Buddha founded sect. Heavily influenced by the Muromachi
ideas of "original enlightenment" and "you are the Buddha just as you
are", they developed several peculiar teachings, like the
unenlightened worldling is the Original Buddha, the teacher of
Shakyamuni Buddha. Although, the idea of "original enlightenment" was
used by Dengyo and Nichiren, it was used in an extemely cautious
manner. By the time of the late Muromachi, these terms had come to
mean someting quite different and to set itself apart from the
traditional Nichiren sects, Taisekaji readily adopted them.
In short, these ideas that form the basis of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
"theology" were developed long after Nichiren and his immediate
successors died. These cunning abbots of Taisekiji not only came up
with viewpoints that reflected their own opinions, rather than
Nichiren's, but when those opinions conflicted with Nichiren's words,
Taisekiji would either re-interpret or alter Nichiren Daishonin's
words. The 9th abbot, Nichi-u who died of white leprosy first
revealed the "dai-Gohonzon" to the world, in 1488. The 26th abbot,
Nichikan wrote many works stating, in effect, "Nichiren said this,
but he really meant something else". He re-interpreted Nichiren's
words to conform to his viewpoint.
A modern example of something like this, in the Western context, is
Emanuel Swedenborg who claimed to have experienced supernatural
visions,and, according to the "instructions" that he received, he
wrote sweeping allegorical interpretations of the scriptures. Joseph
Smith and the Mormon Church is another example of such "latter day"
re-interpretation of earlier scripture.
They replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the Lotus Sutra,
with Nichiren or in the case of the Soka Gakkai who confuses the
Buddha and the Law, with Namu Myoho renge kyo. In the authentic
Gosho ("writings" ), Nichiren identifies the True Original Eternal
Buddha as Shakyamuni Buddha. Nichiren carried a statue of Shakyamuni
with him until the day he died. Taisekiji attempts to overcome the
teaching of Nichiren on the identity the "Eternal Buddha" by stating
that he really meant himself but was too humble to come out and say
it. There is not even a hint of this in the Lotus Sutra or the
writings of Nichiren.
Neither can they be found in the writings of his immediate disciples,
even Nikko who founded Taisekiji and only spent 18 months there. He
spent the next 36 years of his life at Kitayama Hommonji, where most
of his authentic works are kept. He died there in 1333, the same year
his disciple, Nichimoku, died. Nikko never returned to Taisekiji once
he
departed.
If the so-called "dai-Gohonzon" existed at that time, then Nikko
never
mentioned it nor did he return to Taisekiji to view it again. Nikko is
buried
at Kitayama Hommonji and his grave faces Minobu, the resting place of
Nichiren Daishonin.
In the "Rissho Ankoku Ron" and the other major writings, Nichiren
stated repeatedly that the troubles of Japan stemmed from having
abandoned the Original Buddha Shakyamuni and having replaced
him with other Buddhas, such as Dainichi, Yakushi, and Amida Buddha.
It is inconceivablethat Nichiren would warn against abandoning the
Eternal Shakyamuni, only to later have Taisekiji abbots replace this
Eternal Shakyamuni with Nichiren himself! One only has to read the
words of Nichiren to realize how inconsistent this idea is with
Nichiren's most basic beliefs.
The first mention of the idea of "Nichiren as True Buddha" surfaces
in the 17th Century, by Nissho. A great many forgeries have been
created within Taisekiji to bolster their claims whichgo against the
words of Nichiren. Even in the "Major Works of Nichiren", translated
by Soka Gakkai, the constant references that Nichiren makes to
the "Eternal Shakyamuni" are heavily footnoted or altered to claim
Nichiren was really referring to himself.
"Casting off" the Eternal Shakyamuni Buddha pollutes the Nichiren
faith. It stems the flow of benefit and cuts off the rewards of the
Lotus Sutra. What is left is a imitation of what Nichiren actually
believedand practiced. When the Eternal Shakyamuni is re-introduced
into the practice of the believer, the real benefits and "profound
joy" of chanting is brought back to life. Altering this this key
component developed by Nichiren, the faith and practice of Taisekiji
and Soka Gakkai becomes a counterfeit ritual that merely gives the
illusion of benefit.
Likewise, the tendency to "deify" either the current High Priest, or
Daisaku Ikeda is a crutch to keep people attached to Taisekiji and
the Soka Gakkai. It has nothing to do with the faith and practice of
the Lotus Sutra as Nichiren intended it.
The glorification of the "fake mandala", the "dai-Gohonzon", which,
according to the Taisekaji priests, "renders all authentic Nichiren
Gohonzons worthless" (the exact words of Nichi-u, the 9th High Priest
who first introduced it, two hundred years after Nichiren's death),
is
doubly pernicious because it cuts off the connection between the
believer, the real Nichiren and his authentic representation of the
Gohonzon.
If you wish to experience authentic Nichiren Buddhism based firmly
on the Lotus Sutra and the writings of Nichiren Daishonin and rapidly
attain Buddhahood, I encourage you to try the practice for ninety
days. I will assist you any way I can. I will send you sutra books,
and the Tradition of Nichiren Doctrine for free, and will help you to
receive a Gohonzon.
(An essay  based on the writings of Graham Lamont and edited by me).
Here is Cody, doing shakubuku duty in NST.....

cmk
cmk
2008-10-28 06:10:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by M***@rochester.rr.com
"KEMPON HOKKE" means "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra." It is the orthodox Hokke (Lotus Sutra) sect, as established
by Nichiren Daishonin in Japan.
The Kempon Hokke-USA is the overseas lay organization of the Kempon
Hokke of Japan. Kempon Hokke of Japan derives its teachings directly
from Nichiren, and was officially founded by Nichi-ju, (originally
named Gemmyo), a Tendai priest who had converted to the exclusive
teachings of the Lotus Sutra and Nichirenwhen he was sixty-six years
old after reading two writings of Nichiren, The Opening of the Eyes
and Practicing According to the Preachings. He founded the head
temple, Myomanji, in Kyoto and various other temples. Kempon Hokke is
known for it's orthodox approach to Nichiren's teachings and for it's
emphasis on scholastic study of the Lotus Sutra and the works of
Nichiren. It discourages viewpoints that depart from the true
intentions of Nichiren and those that minimize the study of the Lotus
Sutra. Even as early as Nichi-juu's time, there were many distortions
of Nichiren's basic doctrines. There were many forgeries attributed
to Nichiren and there were other traditions based on "secret
transmissions" that had no basis in historical or doctrinal reality.
Kempon Hokke means, "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra" and this teaching derives from the "Hokkekyo" (Lotus Sutra),
the works of T'ien-t'ai(538-597 AD) of China, Dengyo (767-822 AD) of
Japan, and especially by Nichiren Daishonin (1222-1282) of Japan.
Nichiren Daishonin distilled the teaching into the formula "Namu myo
ho renge kyo" (the title of the Lotus Sutra), established the supreme
mandala called the "Gohonzon", and wrote many treatises on the
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, especially as it relates to the present
age.
There are many sects and organizations that invoke Nichiren's name
and adopt aspects of his teachings, but few keep his doctrines intact
and actually try to practice them, just as Nichiren mandated.
For example, the Taisekiji (Fuji Ha) sect and the modern day
Soka Gakkai utilize the "daimoku" in a truncated form (they have
abbreviated the chant by changing "Namu" to "Nam") and they have
replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni, as described in the 16th
Chapter of the Lotus Sutra, with Nichiren himself, something that
Nichiren never advocated. This idea did not appear until the 17th
century, hundreds of years after Nichiren's death. Likewise, they
have created an "ita Mandala" (board or plank mandala) to replace
all authenticated Nichiren Gohonzons (written in Nichiren's own
hand).
The so-called "dai-Gohonzon" did not appear until 1488, more than
two centuries after Nichiren's death. The handwriting and composition
of the "dai-Gohonzon" is highly suspect. Taisekiji bases it's
teachings
on "secret oral transmissions" and many forged documents. During
and after Nichiren's death, many Buddhist teachers used the principle
of "secret oral transmissions" to justify their teachings. It has led
to
many twisted interpretations of Nichiren's doctrine.
In the Kempon Hokke, there are no such secret transmissions. The
true transmission or succession lies in the scrolls of the Lotus
Sutra
and is transmitted directly from the Original Buddha, found in the
Lotus Sutra, to the believer. This principle is called "kyokan sojo".
There is no special secret doctrine handed to one disciple alone.
There is no intermediary between the believer and the Lotus Sutra.
When one takes faith in the Lotus Sutra, as elucidated by Nichiren
himself (and we must base this on his authentic writings, rejecting
all forgeries) then we have the true succession from the eternal
Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the 16th Chapter of the the Lotus
Sutra, to the believer directly. Those who place their faith
in "secret transmissions" outside of the words of Nichiren and the
Lotus Sutra are likely to be fooled by spiritual tyrants. Any faith
in an external hierarchy or "succession" (Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
are the best examples) places the teaching and the benefits outside
of the individual practitioner. Nichiren admonished his followers
to "never seek this teaching outside of yourself". He often quoted
the Nirvana Sutra ("Daihatsu-nehan-gyo") which says "Rely on the
do not rely on consciousness alone." Likewise, Dengyo Daishi (founder
of the Tendai school in Japan and Nichiren's predecessor in
transmitting the teachings of the Lotus Sutra) said, " Place reliance
on the Buddhas's preaching: do not believe in oral transmissions"
(Hokke Shuku, DDZ, V. 3, 245.)
Nichiren's teachings are especially relevant for this time period
("Mappo" or "Age of Degeneration") in which secular and religious
struggles are rampant and Buddhist teachings, apart from the ultimate
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, lose their efficacy to lead to
Buddhahood. This degeneration was predicted in the "Daijikkyo Sutra"
(the Great Collection Sutra) where the decline was laid out in the
five "five-hundred-year" periods.
"Mappo" will exist until the coming of the next historical Buddha,
Maitreya (also called "Ajita"). In these subsequent "five-hundred-
year" periods, all buddhist sutras preached before the Hokkekyo
(Lotus Sutra) will degenerate and whatever is left of these pre-
Hokkekyo teachings and their accompanying practices will be just an
empty shell. If these"provisional" sutras are followed and the Lotus
Sutra is discarded or disparaged, then the provisional teachings will
lead to "hell" in future lifetimes. In such simplistic terms this
kind of karmic retribution seems too apocalyptic, but the predictions
are rooted in the deepest realms of Buddhist introspections, far
beyond the meditative capacity of people in a degenerate age. Truly,
the ultimate reality can only be shared between Buddhas because
common mortals are swayed by the illusions that create the matrix of
mundane life.
The Lotus Sutra is the only vehicle to cross the sea of suffering and
end the cycle of birth-and-death. By faith in this ultimate teaching
of the Original Buddha, one is assured of Buddhahood, even though
understanding is not yet developed. Buddhahood is "ceded" by the
Original Buddha to the believer in the Lotus Sutra, one who practices
the chanting of the "daimoku" (great title) of "Namu myo ho renge
kyo". Since the illusions of the age is great and the shallowness of
the beings is inherent, the "medicine" of the Lotus Sutra is profound
yet simple.
The Lotus Sutra and, more particularly, the essence of the Lotus
Sutra or the "daimoku" ("Namu myo ho renge kyo") will spread at the
time of struggle and destruction, precisely when other Buddhist
teachings have lost their curative powers. The text of the Lotus
Sutra clearly indicates that even when the other buddhist teachings
disappear, the Great Pure ("White") Dharma of the Lotus Sutra will be
propagated over the world, according to the principle of "correct
time" (i.e. our present age). It is the "medicine" to cure the ills
of this time period.
In this Degenerate age, Buddhahood is only assured through faith in
the Lotus Sutra. Faith in the pre-Lotus Sutra teachings can only lead
to the hell realm and less frequently to the realm of hunger and
animality (the Three Lower Worlds). The One Vehicle of the Lotus
Sutra is the path to rapidly lessen our karmic hindrances accumulated
from countless lifetimes of ignorance, anger and stupidity.
In all other sutras, the historical Shakyamuni is shown to have first
attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in India three thousand
years ago and is the one who preaches the provisional teachings
and who answers questions according to the capacities of the
audience.
In the Lotus Sutra, the historical Shakyamuni reveals his true
identity as the Original Buddha, enlightened since before time
without beginning. This transcendent Original Buddha declares that
his enlightenment under the Bodhi tree was a "skillful means" to lead
people to universal enlightenment. Likewise, the Buddha's death
("Nirvana") too, is a "skillful means" to bring people to the
ultimate
teaching found only in the depths of the Lotus Sutra. In reality, the
Buddha has always been enlightened and he never dies but exists even
now and forever. The cycle of life-and-death is an illusion that
imprisons sentient beings in the "Saha" (triple) world, our world of
endurance and suffering.
The ultimate reality (which is depicted in Nichiren's mandala, the
"Gohonzon") is a transcendent, timeless and deathless enlightenment
that is the legacy of all sentient beings. Faith in the Lotus Sutra
immediately gives us the "cause and effect" accumulation of the
Buddha's merits and practice. Since it is the teaching of the
Original Buddha, it is "difficult to believe and difficult to
accept", unlike the provisional sutras, which where preached
according to the capacities of the listeners. However, it is the
direct path to Buddhahood.
Taisekiji (the Fuji Sect) has spawned Nichiren Shoshu and Soka
Gakkai. The latter is a lay organization that has separated itself
from Nichiren Shoshu (the official sect name of Taisekiji). The
"theology" of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai is far removed from the
original teachings of Nichiren. In truth, they derive their doctrines
from later teachers. These later abbots of Taisekiji adopted the
popular trends of the Muromachi Period. These were the trends of
"chuko Tendai" (medieval Tendai). These schools, therefore, possess a
particular vocabulary and doctrine that set it apart from the Kempon
Hokke, the Buddha founded sect. Heavily influenced by the Muromachi
ideas of "original enlightenment" and "you are the Buddha just as you
are", they developed several peculiar teachings, like the
unenlightened worldling is the Original Buddha, the teacher of
Shakyamuni Buddha. Although, the idea of "original enlightenment" was
used by Dengyo and Nichiren, it was used in an extemely cautious
manner. By the time of the late Muromachi, these terms had come to
mean someting quite different and to set itself apart from the
traditional Nichiren sects, Taisekaji readily adopted them.
In short, these ideas that form the basis of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
"theology" were developed long after Nichiren and his immediate
successors died. These cunning abbots of Taisekiji not only came up
with viewpoints that reflected their own opinions, rather than
Nichiren's, but when those opinions conflicted with Nichiren's words,
Taisekiji would either re-interpret or alter Nichiren Daishonin's
words. The 9th abbot, Nichi-u who died of white leprosy first
revealed the "dai-Gohonzon" to the world, in 1488. The 26th abbot,
Nichikan wrote many works stating, in effect, "Nichiren said this,
but he really meant something else". He re-interpreted Nichiren's
words to conform to his viewpoint.
A modern example of something like this, in the Western context, is
Emanuel Swedenborg who claimed to have experienced supernatural
visions,and, according to the "instructions" that he received, he
wrote sweeping allegorical interpretations of the scriptures. Joseph
Smith and the Mormon Church is another example of such "latter day"
re-interpretation of earlier scripture.
They replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the Lotus Sutra,
with Nichiren or in the case of the Soka Gakkai who confuses the
Buddha and the Law, with Namu Myoho renge kyo. In the authentic
Gosho ("writings" ), Nichiren identifies the True Original Eternal
Buddha as Shakyamuni Buddha. Nichiren carried a statue of Shakyamuni
with him until the day he died. Taisekiji attempts to overcome the
teaching of Nichiren on the identity the "Eternal Buddha" by stating
that he really meant himself but was too humble to come out and say
it. There is not even a hint of this in the Lotus Sutra or the
writings of Nichiren.
Neither can they be found in the writings of his immediate disciples,
even Nikko who founded Taisekiji and only spent 18 months there. He
spent the next 36 years of his life at Kitayama Hommonji, where most
of his authentic works are kept. He died there in 1333, the same year
his disciple, Nichimoku, died. Nikko never returned to Taisekiji once
he
departed.
If the so-called "dai-Gohonzon" existed at that time, then Nikko
never
mentioned it nor did he return to Taisekiji to view it again. Nikko is
buried
at Kitayama Hommonji and his grave faces Minobu, the resting place of
Nichiren Daishonin.
In the "Rissho Ankoku Ron" and the other major writings, Nichiren
stated repeatedly that the troubles of Japan stemmed from having
abandoned the Original Buddha Shakyamuni and having replaced
him with other Buddhas, such as Dainichi, Yakushi, and Amida Buddha.
It is inconceivablethat Nichiren would warn against abandoning the
Eternal Shakyamuni, only to later have Taisekiji abbots replace this
Eternal Shakyamuni with Nichiren himself! One only has to read the
words of Nichiren to realize how inconsistent this idea is with
Nichiren's most basic beliefs.
The first mention of the idea of "Nichiren as True Buddha" surfaces
in the 17th Century, by Nissho. A great many forgeries have been
created within Taisekiji to bolster their claims whichgo against the
words of Nichiren. Even in the "Major Works of Nichiren", translated
by Soka Gakkai, the constant references that Nichiren makes to
the "Eternal Shakyamuni" are heavily footnoted or altered to claim
Nichiren was really referring to himself.
"Casting off" the Eternal Shakyamuni Buddha pollutes the Nichiren
faith. It stems the flow of benefit and cuts off the rewards of the
Lotus Sutra. What is left is a imitation of what Nichiren actually
believedand practiced. When the Eternal Shakyamuni is re-introduced
into the practice of the believer, the real benefits and "profound
joy" of chanting is brought back to life. Altering this this key
component developed by Nichiren, the faith and practice of Taisekiji
and Soka Gakkai becomes a counterfeit ritual that merely gives the
illusion of benefit.
Likewise, the tendency to "deify" either the current High Priest, or
Daisaku Ikeda is a crutch to keep people attached to Taisekiji and
the Soka Gakkai. It has nothing to do with the faith and practice of
the Lotus Sutra as Nichiren intended it.
The glorification of the "fake mandala", the "dai-Gohonzon", which,
according to the Taisekaji priests, "renders all authentic Nichiren
Gohonzons worthless" (the exact words of Nichi-u, the 9th High Priest
who first introduced it, two hundred years after Nichiren's death),
is
doubly pernicious because it cuts off the connection between the
believer, the real Nichiren and his authentic representation of the
Gohonzon.
If you wish to experience authentic Nichiren Buddhism based firmly
on the Lotus Sutra and the writings of Nichiren Daishonin and rapidly
attain Buddhahood, I encourage you to try the practice for ninety
days. I will assist you any way I can. I will send you sutra books,
and the Tradition of Nichiren Doctrine for free, and will help you to
receive a Gohonzon.
(An essay  based on the writings of Graham Lamont and edited by me).
Michael,

Here is a bird smarter than you are!



cmk
cmk
2008-10-28 06:40:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by M***@rochester.rr.com
"KEMPON HOKKE" means "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra." It is the orthodox Hokke (Lotus Sutra) sect, as established
by Nichiren Daishonin in Japan.
The Kempon Hokke-USA is the overseas lay organization of the Kempon
Hokke of Japan. Kempon Hokke of Japan derives its teachings directly
from Nichiren, and was officially founded by Nichi-ju, (originally
named Gemmyo), a Tendai priest who had converted to the exclusive
teachings of the Lotus Sutra and Nichirenwhen he was sixty-six years
old after reading two writings of Nichiren, The Opening of the Eyes
and Practicing According to the Preachings. He founded the head
temple, Myomanji, in Kyoto and various other temples. Kempon Hokke is
known for it's orthodox approach to Nichiren's teachings and for it's
emphasis on scholastic study of the Lotus Sutra and the works of
Nichiren. It discourages viewpoints that depart from the true
intentions of Nichiren and those that minimize the study of the Lotus
Sutra. Even as early as Nichi-juu's time, there were many distortions
of Nichiren's basic doctrines. There were many forgeries attributed
to Nichiren and there were other traditions based on "secret
transmissions" that had no basis in historical or doctrinal reality.
Kempon Hokke means, "revealing the Original Buddha of the Lotus
Sutra" and this teaching derives from the "Hokkekyo" (Lotus Sutra),
the works of T'ien-t'ai(538-597 AD) of China, Dengyo (767-822 AD) of
Japan, and especially by Nichiren Daishonin (1222-1282) of Japan.
Nichiren Daishonin distilled the teaching into the formula "Namu myo
ho renge kyo" (the title of the Lotus Sutra), established the supreme
mandala called the "Gohonzon", and wrote many treatises on the
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, especially as it relates to the present
age.
There are many sects and organizations that invoke Nichiren's name
and adopt aspects of his teachings, but few keep his doctrines intact
and actually try to practice them, just as Nichiren mandated.
For example, the Taisekiji (Fuji Ha) sect and the modern day
Soka Gakkai utilize the "daimoku" in a truncated form (they have
abbreviated the chant by changing "Namu" to "Nam") and they have
replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni, as described in the 16th
Chapter of the Lotus Sutra, with Nichiren himself, something that
Nichiren never advocated. This idea did not appear until the 17th
century, hundreds of years after Nichiren's death. Likewise, they
have created an "ita Mandala" (board or plank mandala) to replace
all authenticated Nichiren Gohonzons (written in Nichiren's own
hand).
The so-called "dai-Gohonzon" did not appear until 1488, more than
two centuries after Nichiren's death. The handwriting and composition
of the "dai-Gohonzon" is highly suspect. Taisekiji bases it's
teachings
on "secret oral transmissions" and many forged documents. During
and after Nichiren's death, many Buddhist teachers used the principle
of "secret oral transmissions" to justify their teachings. It has led
to
many twisted interpretations of Nichiren's doctrine.
In the Kempon Hokke, there are no such secret transmissions. The
true transmission or succession lies in the scrolls of the Lotus
Sutra
and is transmitted directly from the Original Buddha, found in the
Lotus Sutra, to the believer. This principle is called "kyokan sojo".
There is no special secret doctrine handed to one disciple alone.
There is no intermediary between the believer and the Lotus Sutra.
When one takes faith in the Lotus Sutra, as elucidated by Nichiren
himself (and we must base this on his authentic writings, rejecting
all forgeries) then we have the true succession from the eternal
Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the 16th Chapter of the the Lotus
Sutra, to the believer directly. Those who place their faith
in "secret transmissions" outside of the words of Nichiren and the
Lotus Sutra are likely to be fooled by spiritual tyrants. Any faith
in an external hierarchy or "succession" (Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
are the best examples) places the teaching and the benefits outside
of the individual practitioner. Nichiren admonished his followers
to "never seek this teaching outside of yourself". He often quoted
the Nirvana Sutra ("Daihatsu-nehan-gyo") which says "Rely on the
do not rely on consciousness alone." Likewise, Dengyo Daishi (founder
of the Tendai school in Japan and Nichiren's predecessor in
transmitting the teachings of the Lotus Sutra) said, " Place reliance
on the Buddhas's preaching: do not believe in oral transmissions"
(Hokke Shuku, DDZ, V. 3, 245.)
Nichiren's teachings are especially relevant for this time period
("Mappo" or "Age of Degeneration") in which secular and religious
struggles are rampant and Buddhist teachings, apart from the ultimate
teachings of the Lotus Sutra, lose their efficacy to lead to
Buddhahood. This degeneration was predicted in the "Daijikkyo Sutra"
(the Great Collection Sutra) where the decline was laid out in the
five "five-hundred-year" periods.
"Mappo" will exist until the coming of the next historical Buddha,
Maitreya (also called "Ajita"). In these subsequent "five-hundred-
year" periods, all buddhist sutras preached before the Hokkekyo
(Lotus Sutra) will degenerate and whatever is left of these pre-
Hokkekyo teachings and their accompanying practices will be just an
empty shell. If these"provisional" sutras are followed and the Lotus
Sutra is discarded or disparaged, then the provisional teachings will
lead to "hell" in future lifetimes. In such simplistic terms this
kind of karmic retribution seems too apocalyptic, but the predictions
are rooted in the deepest realms of Buddhist introspections, far
beyond the meditative capacity of people in a degenerate age. Truly,
the ultimate reality can only be shared between Buddhas because
common mortals are swayed by the illusions that create the matrix of
mundane life.
The Lotus Sutra is the only vehicle to cross the sea of suffering and
end the cycle of birth-and-death. By faith in this ultimate teaching
of the Original Buddha, one is assured of Buddhahood, even though
understanding is not yet developed. Buddhahood is "ceded" by the
Original Buddha to the believer in the Lotus Sutra, one who practices
the chanting of the "daimoku" (great title) of "Namu myo ho renge
kyo". Since the illusions of the age is great and the shallowness of
the beings is inherent, the "medicine" of the Lotus Sutra is profound
yet simple.
The Lotus Sutra and, more particularly, the essence of the Lotus
Sutra or the "daimoku" ("Namu myo ho renge kyo") will spread at the
time of struggle and destruction, precisely when other Buddhist
teachings have lost their curative powers. The text of the Lotus
Sutra clearly indicates that even when the other buddhist teachings
disappear, the Great Pure ("White") Dharma of the Lotus Sutra will be
propagated over the world, according to the principle of "correct
time" (i.e. our present age). It is the "medicine" to cure the ills
of this time period.
In this Degenerate age, Buddhahood is only assured through faith in
the Lotus Sutra. Faith in the pre-Lotus Sutra teachings can only lead
to the hell realm and less frequently to the realm of hunger and
animality (the Three Lower Worlds). The One Vehicle of the Lotus
Sutra is the path to rapidly lessen our karmic hindrances accumulated
from countless lifetimes of ignorance, anger and stupidity.
In all other sutras, the historical Shakyamuni is shown to have first
attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in India three thousand
years ago and is the one who preaches the provisional teachings
and who answers questions according to the capacities of the
audience.
In the Lotus Sutra, the historical Shakyamuni reveals his true
identity as the Original Buddha, enlightened since before time
without beginning. This transcendent Original Buddha declares that
his enlightenment under the Bodhi tree was a "skillful means" to lead
people to universal enlightenment. Likewise, the Buddha's death
("Nirvana") too, is a "skillful means" to bring people to the
ultimate
teaching found only in the depths of the Lotus Sutra. In reality, the
Buddha has always been enlightened and he never dies but exists even
now and forever. The cycle of life-and-death is an illusion that
imprisons sentient beings in the "Saha" (triple) world, our world of
endurance and suffering.
The ultimate reality (which is depicted in Nichiren's mandala, the
"Gohonzon") is a transcendent, timeless and deathless enlightenment
that is the legacy of all sentient beings. Faith in the Lotus Sutra
immediately gives us the "cause and effect" accumulation of the
Buddha's merits and practice. Since it is the teaching of the
Original Buddha, it is "difficult to believe and difficult to
accept", unlike the provisional sutras, which where preached
according to the capacities of the listeners. However, it is the
direct path to Buddhahood.
Taisekiji (the Fuji Sect) has spawned Nichiren Shoshu and Soka
Gakkai. The latter is a lay organization that has separated itself
from Nichiren Shoshu (the official sect name of Taisekiji). The
"theology" of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai is far removed from the
original teachings of Nichiren. In truth, they derive their doctrines
from later teachers. These later abbots of Taisekiji adopted the
popular trends of the Muromachi Period. These were the trends of
"chuko Tendai" (medieval Tendai). These schools, therefore, possess a
particular vocabulary and doctrine that set it apart from the Kempon
Hokke, the Buddha founded sect. Heavily influenced by the Muromachi
ideas of "original enlightenment" and "you are the Buddha just as you
are", they developed several peculiar teachings, like the
unenlightened worldling is the Original Buddha, the teacher of
Shakyamuni Buddha. Although, the idea of "original enlightenment" was
used by Dengyo and Nichiren, it was used in an extemely cautious
manner. By the time of the late Muromachi, these terms had come to
mean someting quite different and to set itself apart from the
traditional Nichiren sects, Taisekaji readily adopted them.
In short, these ideas that form the basis of Taisekiji and Soka Gakkai
"theology" were developed long after Nichiren and his immediate
successors died. These cunning abbots of Taisekiji not only came up
with viewpoints that reflected their own opinions, rather than
Nichiren's, but when those opinions conflicted with Nichiren's words,
Taisekiji would either re-interpret or alter Nichiren Daishonin's
words. The 9th abbot, Nichi-u who died of white leprosy first
revealed the "dai-Gohonzon" to the world, in 1488. The 26th abbot,
Nichikan wrote many works stating, in effect, "Nichiren said this,
but he really meant something else". He re-interpreted Nichiren's
words to conform to his viewpoint.
A modern example of something like this, in the Western context, is
Emanuel Swedenborg who claimed to have experienced supernatural
visions,and, according to the "instructions" that he received, he
wrote sweeping allegorical interpretations of the scriptures. Joseph
Smith and the Mormon Church is another example of such "latter day"
re-interpretation of earlier scripture.
They replaced the Original Buddha Shakyamuni of the Lotus Sutra,
with Nichiren or in the case of the Soka Gakkai who confuses the
Buddha and the Law, with Namu Myoho renge kyo. In the authentic
Gosho ("writings" ), Nichiren identifies the True Original Eternal
Buddha as Shakyamuni Buddha. Nichiren carried a statue of Shakyamuni
with him until the day he died. Taisekiji attempts to overcome the
teaching of Nichiren on the identity the "Eternal Buddha" by stating
that he really meant himself but was too humble to come out and say
it. There is not even a hint of this in the Lotus Sutra or the
writings of Nichiren.
Neither can they be found in the writings of his immediate disciples,
even Nikko who founded Taisekiji and only spent 18 months there. He
spent the next 36 years of his life at Kitayama Hommonji, where most
of his authentic works are kept. He died there in 1333, the same year
his disciple, Nichimoku, died. Nikko never returned to Taisekiji once
he
departed.
If the so-called "dai-Gohonzon" existed at that time, then Nikko
never
mentioned it nor did he return to Taisekiji to view it again. Nikko is
buried
at Kitayama Hommonji and his grave faces Minobu, the resting place of
Nichiren Daishonin.
In the "Rissho Ankoku Ron" and the other major writings, Nichiren
stated repeatedly that the troubles of Japan stemmed from having
abandoned the Original Buddha Shakyamuni and having replaced
him with other Buddhas, such as Dainichi, Yakushi, and Amida Buddha.
It is inconceivablethat Nichiren would warn against abandoning the
Eternal Shakyamuni, only to later have Taisekiji abbots replace this
Eternal Shakyamuni with Nichiren himself! One only has to read the
words of Nichiren to realize how inconsistent this idea is with
Nichiren's most basic beliefs.
The first mention of the idea of "Nichiren as True Buddha" surfaces
in the 17th Century, by Nissho. A great many forgeries have been
created within Taisekiji to bolster their claims whichgo against the
words of Nichiren. Even in the "Major Works of Nichiren", translated
by Soka Gakkai, the constant references that Nichiren makes to
the "Eternal Shakyamuni" are heavily footnoted or altered to claim
Nichiren was really referring to himself.
"Casting off" the Eternal Shakyamuni Buddha pollutes the Nichiren
faith. It stems the flow of benefit and cuts off the rewards of the
Lotus Sutra. What is left is a imitation of what Nichiren actually
believedand practiced. When the Eternal Shakyamuni is re-introduced
into the practice of the believer, the real benefits and "profound
joy" of chanting is brought back to life. Altering this this key
component developed by Nichiren, the faith and practice of Taisekiji
and Soka Gakkai becomes a counterfeit ritual that merely gives the
illusion of benefit.
Likewise, the tendency to "deify" either the current High Priest, or
Daisaku Ikeda is a crutch to keep people attached to Taisekiji and
the Soka Gakkai. It has nothing to do with the faith and practice of
the Lotus Sutra as Nichiren intended it.
The glorification of the "fake mandala", the "dai-Gohonzon", which,
according to the Taisekaji priests, "renders all authentic Nichiren
Gohonzons worthless" (the exact words of Nichi-u, the 9th High Priest
who first introduced it, two hundred years after Nichiren's death),
is
doubly pernicious because it cuts off the connection between the
believer, the real Nichiren and his authentic representation of the
Gohonzon.
If you wish to experience authentic Nichiren Buddhism based firmly
on the Lotus Sutra and the writings of Nichiren Daishonin and rapidly
attain Buddhahood, I encourage you to try the practice for ninety
days. I will assist you any way I can. I will send you sutra books,
and the Tradition of Nichiren Doctrine for free, and will help you to
receive a Gohonzon.
(An essay  based on the writings of Graham Lamont and edited by me).


This is Cody shakubukuing his neighborhood!

cmk
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