Nichiren and Tantra - Split from Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

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tiagolps
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Nichiren and Tantra - Split from Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by tiagolps » Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:08 am

illarraza wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 5:47 am
Here is what Nichiren teaches about men such as Malcolm...
"... No matter how much they preach that there is attainment of Buddhahood in the Previous Sutras, or how the people of the Provisional Sects madly rave, it will be 'one hammer to a thousand earthen pans'" (Ueno dono gohenji (Reply to Lord Ueno), STN, v. 2, 1634
Mark

What did Nichiren say about the Tantras thought? The Mantrayana? Did he comment at all?
Homage to you, blissful, virtuous and peaceful,
Enjoy the domain of the tranquil nirvana.
Fully possessing the om and the soha,
You overcome even the greatest of evils.

_______________________________________________
"Buddhahood really is like an infection and it goes from one person to another. You can fight it off, but it's a pity if you do that..."
-Rigdzin Shikpo

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Queequeg » Thu Oct 19, 2017 12:19 pm

tiagolps wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:08 am


What did Nichiren say about the Tantras thought? The Mantrayana? Did he comment at all?
He received transmission of the Diamond Realm and Womb Realm mandalas and these are integrated in his mandala, apparently in a manner consistent with Tendai mantrayana (shingon). He wrote that the Daimoku is the same as a mantra on the Lotus Sutra composed by Subhakarasimha. That said, he considered Mantras and Mudras as provisional teachings. He thought the genuine thoughts, words and actions of a Practitioner of the Lotus Sutra were superior to the contrived words and acts of mudra and mantra. In the manner of Lotus ordering, mudra and mantra are derivative teachings based on the genuine activity of beings carrying out genuine practice for self and others.
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by tiagolps » Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:13 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 12:19 pm
tiagolps wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:08 am


What did Nichiren say about the Tantras thought? The Mantrayana? Did he comment at all?
He received transmission of the Diamond Realm and Womb Realm mandalas and these are integrated in his mandala, apparently in a manner consistent with Tendai mantrayana (shingon). He wrote that the Daimoku is the same as a mantra on the Lotus Sutra composed by Subhakarasimha. That said, he considered Mantras and Mudras as provisional teachings. He thought the genuine thoughts, words and actions of a Practitioner of the Lotus Sutra were superior to the contrived words and acts of mudra and mantra. In the manner of Lotus ordering, mudra and mantra are derivative teachings based on the genuine activity of beings carrying out genuine practice for self and others.
Fair enough. Although as I understand it he didn't comment on Shingon itself, but on Tendai mikkyo.
Homage to you, blissful, virtuous and peaceful,
Enjoy the domain of the tranquil nirvana.
Fully possessing the om and the soha,
You overcome even the greatest of evils.

_______________________________________________
"Buddhahood really is like an infection and it goes from one person to another. You can fight it off, but it's a pity if you do that..."
-Rigdzin Shikpo

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Queequeg » Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:15 pm

tiagolps wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:13 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 12:19 pm
tiagolps wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:08 am


What did Nichiren say about the Tantras thought? The Mantrayana? Did he comment at all?
He received transmission of the Diamond Realm and Womb Realm mandalas and these are integrated in his mandala, apparently in a manner consistent with Tendai mantrayana (shingon). He wrote that the Daimoku is the same as a mantra on the Lotus Sutra composed by Subhakarasimha. That said, he considered Mantras and Mudras as provisional teachings. He thought the genuine thoughts, words and actions of a Practitioner of the Lotus Sutra were superior to the contrived words and acts of mudra and mantra. In the manner of Lotus ordering, mudra and mantra are derivative teachings based on the genuine activity of beings carrying out genuine practice for self and others.
Fair enough. Although as I understand it he didn't comment on Shingon itself, but on Tendai mikkyo.
He definitely commented on Shingon.
“Once you have given up the ghost, everything follows with dead certainty, even in the midst of chaos.”
-Henry Miller

"Language is the liquid that we're all dissolved in.
Great for solving problems, after it creates the problems."
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by tiagolps » Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:19 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:15 pm
He definitely commented on Shingon.
Did he receive initiation in Shingon or Tendai? Didn't really understand that part...
Homage to you, blissful, virtuous and peaceful,
Enjoy the domain of the tranquil nirvana.
Fully possessing the om and the soha,
You overcome even the greatest of evils.

_______________________________________________
"Buddhahood really is like an infection and it goes from one person to another. You can fight it off, but it's a pity if you do that..."
-Rigdzin Shikpo

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Nyedrag Yeshe » Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:46 pm

tiagolps wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:19 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:15 pm
He definitely commented on Shingon.
Did he receive initiation in Shingon or Tendai? Didn't really understand that part...
Yes he did, he received Abhisheka in the two mandalas of Garbhadhatu and Vajradhatu!
“Whatever has to happen, let it happen!”
“Whatever the situation is, it’s fine!”
“I really don’t need anything!
~Tsangpa Gyare Yeshe Dorje (1161-1211)
ओं पद्मोष्णीष विमले हूँ फट । ओं हनुफशभरहृदय स्वाहा॥
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔ ཀརྨ་པ་མཁྱེན་ནོ།

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Nyedrag Yeshe » Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:03 pm

tiagolps wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:59 pm
Nyedrag Yeshe wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:46 pm
tiagolps wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:19 pm

Did he receive initiation in Shingon or Tendai? Didn't really understand that part...
Yes he did, he received Abhisheka in the two mandalas of Garbhadhatu and Vajradhatu!
I was asking the school :tongue:
In Tendai obviously, these lineage transmissions are also part of Tendai, and were already integral part of monk's training curriculum in Tendai by Nichiren's time.
“Whatever has to happen, let it happen!”
“Whatever the situation is, it’s fine!”
“I really don’t need anything!
~Tsangpa Gyare Yeshe Dorje (1161-1211)
ओं पद्मोष्णीष विमले हूँ फट । ओं हनुफशभरहृदय स्वाहा॥
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔ ཀརྨ་པ་མཁྱེན་ནོ།

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by tiagolps » Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:13 pm

Nyedrag Yeshe wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:03 pm
tiagolps wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:59 pm
Nyedrag Yeshe wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:46 pm


Yes he did, he received Abhisheka in the two mandalas of Garbhadhatu and Vajradhatu!
I was asking the school :tongue:
In Tendai obviously, these lineage transmissions are also part of Tendai, and were already integral part of monk's training curriculum in Tendai by Nichiren's time.
Ye I know, just curious whether he had initiation in an Non-Lotus school :smile:
Homage to you, blissful, virtuous and peaceful,
Enjoy the domain of the tranquil nirvana.
Fully possessing the om and the soha,
You overcome even the greatest of evils.

_______________________________________________
"Buddhahood really is like an infection and it goes from one person to another. You can fight it off, but it's a pity if you do that..."
-Rigdzin Shikpo

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Queequeg » Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:07 pm

Maybe? As scholars have pointed out, the sectarian divides were not what later commentators with sectarian agendas made them out to be. Nichiren made numerous references to esoteric rites. It's not clear how these exactly figured in his views, except that they were subordinate to the Lotus.
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Nyedrag Yeshe » Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:11 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:07 pm
Maybe? As scholars have pointed out, the sectarian divides were not what later commentators with sectarian agendas made them out to be. Nichiren made numerous references to esoteric rites. It's not clear how these exactly figured in his views, except that they were subordinate to the Lotus.
Do you know of any reference to some tradition or individuals that actually combine Nichiren practice with Vajrayana? This would be an interesting thing!
“Whatever has to happen, let it happen!”
“Whatever the situation is, it’s fine!”
“I really don’t need anything!
~Tsangpa Gyare Yeshe Dorje (1161-1211)
ओं पद्मोष्णीष विमले हूँ फट । ओं हनुफशभरहृदय स्वाहा॥
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔ ཀརྨ་པ་མཁྱེན་ནོ།

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by narhwal90 » Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:33 pm

The practice of inscribing gohonzon was something of a tantric exercise, though systematization and style evolved considerably after Nichiren's death. NIchiren seemed to direct his polemics towards vajrayana practices not centered on the Lotus sutra, IIRC reading comments associated with the Chu-Hokkeyo, Nichiren was interested in the possibility of an Indian esoteric version of the Lotus Sutra.

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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Queequeg » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:10 pm

Nyedrag Yeshe wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:11 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:07 pm
Maybe? As scholars have pointed out, the sectarian divides were not what later commentators with sectarian agendas made them out to be. Nichiren made numerous references to esoteric rites. It's not clear how these exactly figured in his views, except that they were subordinate to the Lotus.
Do you know of any reference to some tradition or individuals that actually combine Nichiren practice with Vajrayana? This would be an interesting thing!
I am not sure... but... and take this with a very big grain of salt and understand this is highly speculative on my part...

The lineage started by Toki Jonin - one of Nichiren's most important disciples who was also a layperson until after Nichiren passed away - seems to most strongly have a yogic flavor. I've recently read references to early leaders of the lineage conducting esoteric rites and some prominent figures in the tradition undertaking yogic practices like living in cemeteries. These days, they have an annual 100 day ascetic practice and conduct various rituals for protection and blessings. This is one of the main lineages of Nichiren Shu, and I believe many of the Nichiren Shu priests in the US are from this lineage - I am pretty certain the Hawaii Nichiren Shu is.

I find it difficult to explain, but Nichiren viewed his practice of shakubuku as "Reading the Sutra with the Body". He was immersed in the mandala of the Lotus Sutra, and when he writes "I inscribe my life in sumi (ink)", I get the sense he meant this in the tantric sense - I get the sense he meant it in what might be compared to guru yoga, though I understand that there is no guru yoga in Japanese vajrayana. This Saha World is the mandala in which the struggle for enlightenment plays out. I think this is similar to higher tantras in the Indo-Tibetan traditions. Nichiren was not particularly unique in understanding the world as mandala in Japan - Alan Grapard has written about this trend, calling it "Mandalization of Geography" or something like that. Nichiren took it to another level, though, completely absorbing everything, including politics, into the Mandala of the Lotus Sutra. The sufferings and tribulations, including political intrigues and domestic relationships, are all within this Mandala. I realize this is fundamentally a Mahayana view, but I think mainstream Mahayana doesn't take this as far. There is still that distinction between the Sangha and society at large. It required the influence of vajrayana to bring it to the level that Nichiren took it.

The Toki Jonin lineages seem to straddle that line of what I'll call formal vajrayana to a greater degree than other lineages.
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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Malcolm » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:21 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:10 pm
This Saha World is the mandala in which the struggle for enlightenment plays out.
Buddhahood does not happen in this Sahaloka, though the nirmanakāya generates appearance of the attainment of buddhahood under the bodhitree as play to give people confidence that they can attain buddhahood. Actual buddhahood is attained in Akaniṣṭha.
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Re: Nichiren and Tantra - Split from Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by narhwal90 » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:26 pm

Theres an article online about the role of "kaji-kito" rituals and talismans in the Nichiren tradition, generally centered around Nichiren Shu but relates some of Nichiren's as well. Its unclear to me how much of that is cultural vs part of doctrine. IIRC its written by Dolce.

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Nichiren and Tantra

Post by Queequeg » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:28 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:21 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:10 pm
This Saha World is the mandala in which the struggle for enlightenment plays out.
Buddhahood does not happen in this Sahaloka, though the nirmanakāya generates appearance of the attainment of buddhahood under the bodhitree as play to give people confidence that they can attain buddhahood. Actual buddhahood is attained in Akaniṣṭha.
I think there are some different ideas at play to an extent. There is on one hand the supreme buddhahood, and then there is buddhahood in this body. I defer to you on this subject.

While Nichiren spoke of Buddhahood in this body, he also referred to supreme buddhahood at a future time when his activities in this world would be a future "jataka tale" included in a future exposition of the Lotus Sutra, something comparable to the story of Sadaparibhuta in Shakyamuni's Lotus Sutra.
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"Language is the liquid that we're all dissolved in.
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Re: Nichiren and Tantra - Split from Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Queequeg » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:31 pm

narhwal90 wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:26 pm
Theres an article online about the role of "kaji-kito" rituals and talismans in the Nichiren tradition, generally centered around Nichiren Shu but relates some of Nichiren's as well. Its unclear to me how much of that is cultural vs part of doctrine. IIRC its written by Dolce.
Yes. Lucia Dolce's dissertation is on the esoteric aspects of Nichiren's teachings, as well as some articles available online. Still trying to get a hold of Dolce's dissertation.

Jacqueline Stone also writes about some of these aspects.

It just occurred to me, the two Western scholars working on Nichiren are both women. Hm.
“Once you have given up the ghost, everything follows with dead certainty, even in the midst of chaos.”
-Henry Miller

"Language is the liquid that we're all dissolved in.
Great for solving problems, after it creates the problems."
-Modest Mouse

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Re: Nichiren and Tantra - Split from Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by narhwal90 » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:35 pm

Ugh I totally blew that reference

http://repository.wellesley.edu/cgi/vie ... collection

is by Kyomi J. Igarashi - my apologies...

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Re: Nichiren and Tantra

Post by Malcolm » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:39 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:28 pm

I think there are some different ideas at play to an extent.
Not in Mahāyana, really. Once one accepts the commonly held Mahāyāna ideal that Śākyamuni Buddha in fact attained buddhahood countless eons ago, any hope of maintaining the idea that he actually attained buddhahood under the bodhitree, rather than merely displayed such an attainment, flies out of the window.

Bodhisattvas on the pure stages dwell in Akaniṣṭha. When they are ready to mount the stage of buddhahood, they receive an abhisheka of light from all the tathāgatas in the ten directions.
There is on one hand the supreme buddhahood, and then there is buddhahood in this body. I defer to you on this subject.

"Buddhahood in this body" is a Mantrayāna slogan introduced to Japan by Kukai. The very notion of it is grounded in Mantrayāna. It is not a common Mahāyāna idea. The common Mahāyāna idea is the very opposite.

The point of view on the relationship of Sūtra and Mantrayāna in Tendai is a little similar to the Gelugpa school in that both schools subordinate Vajrayāna practices to a sūtrayāna view. Needless to say, there is much dissent from this perspective both in Japan and Tibet.
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Re: Nichiren and Tantra - Split from Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Malcolm » Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:40 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:31 pm
narhwal90 wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:26 pm
Theres an article online about the role of "kaji-kito" rituals and talismans in the Nichiren tradition, generally centered around Nichiren Shu but relates some of Nichiren's as well. Its unclear to me how much of that is cultural vs part of doctrine. IIRC its written by Dolce.
Yes. Lucia Dolce's dissertation is on the esoteric aspects of Nichiren's teachings, as well as some articles available online. Still trying to get a hold of Dolce's dissertation.

Jacqueline Stone also writes about some of these aspects.

It just occurred to me, the two Western scholars working on Nichiren are both women. Hm.

Then there is Jan Nattier.
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


The knowledge imparted through the guru’s instructions that formerly was unknown (avidyā) is vidyā.


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Re: Shakyamuni as the Eternal Buddha

Post by Nyedrag Yeshe » Thu Oct 19, 2017 5:11 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 4:10 pm
Nichiren was not particularly unique in understanding the world as mandala in Japan - Alan Grapard has written about this trend, calling it "Mandalization of Geography" or something like that. Nichiren took it to another level, though, completely absorbing everything, including politics, into the Mandala of the Lotus Sutra. The sufferings and tribulations, including political intrigues and domestic relationships, are all within this Mandala. I realize this is fundamentally a Mahayana view, but I think mainstream Mahayana doesn't take this as far. There is still that distinction between the Sangha and society at large. It required the influence of vajrayana to bring it to the level that Nichiren took it.
[/quote]

Interesting answer!
It seems like a trend to ascribe the character of a mandala to many places in Japan, like Kumano, Dewa Sanzan etc. Even back in China, with the Bodhimanda of the four Bodhisattvas etc.
“Whatever has to happen, let it happen!”
“Whatever the situation is, it’s fine!”
“I really don’t need anything!
~Tsangpa Gyare Yeshe Dorje (1161-1211)
ओं पद्मोष्णीष विमले हूँ फट । ओं हनुफशभरहृदय स्वाहा॥
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔ ཀརྨ་པ་མཁྱེན་ནོ།

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