can someone explain the entity of the mystic law?

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nichiren-123
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can someone explain the entity of the mystic law?

Post by nichiren-123 » Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:10 pm

I've been reading nichiren's gosho 'the entity of the mystic law' and in it nichiren begins by saying that
QUESTION: What is the entity of Myoho-renge-kyo?

Answer: All beings and their environments in any of the Ten Worlds are themselves entities of Myoho-renge-kyo.

Question: If so, then is it possible to say that all living beings, such as ourselves, are entities of the Mystic Law in its entirety?

Answer: Of course. The sutra says, “This reality [the true aspect of all phenomena] consists of the appearance, nature . . . and their consistency from beginning to end.”1

The Great Teacher Miao-lo comments on this as follows: “The true aspect invariably manifests in all phenomena, and all phenomena invariably manifest in the ten factors. The ten factors invariably manifest in the Ten Worlds, and the Ten Worlds invariably manifest in life and its environment.”2

T’ien-t’ai commented, “All phenomena consisting of the ten factors, Ten Worlds, and three thousand realms are entities of the Lotus Sutra.”
but later on he says that
Question: If all living beings are entities of Myoho-renge-kyo, then are ordinary people like ourselves who are ignorant and deluded, unenlightened and dull-witted, also entities of the Mystic Law?

Answer: Though there are a great many people in the world today, they all fall into two categories—those who believe in the provisional teachings and those who believe in the true teaching. Those who believe in the provisional and expedient teachings, such as the Nembutsu, cannot be called entities of Myoho-renge-kyo. But those who believe in the Lotus Sutra, which is the true teaching, are entities of Myoho-renge-kyo, mystic entities of the true aspect of reality.
How can this contradiction be solved?
Also, I read somewhere that expedient means are only useful if viewed from the standpoint of the lotus sutra? Can someone clarify why that is so?

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The Cicada
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Re: can someone explain the entity of the mystic law?

Post by The Cicada » Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:49 pm

nichiren-123 wrote:
Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:10 pm
How can this contradiction be solved?
Also, I read somewhere that expedient means are only useful if viewed from the standpoint of the lotus sutra? Can someone clarify why that is so?
I may be wrong, and hopefully someone will come along and explicate in more finely descriptive language if I'm not, but I believe this is saying that those who adhere to provisional teachings cannot be considered to be entities of the Law in a "practical" sense, or "functionally," or contextually. It goes back to the logic we throughout the Lotus Sutra and in parables like the prodigal son, the beggar and the wish granting jewel, and in the overall message that all beings are bodhisattvas destined to be Buddhas.

The poor son "isn't" rich until he's made aware of it. The beggar "isn't" secure until his friend points out the gem in his robe. In the case of the poor prodigal son, he would have bolted if the revelation of his identity was made too early. Similarly, one could liken those who deny the Lotus Sutra as the king of Sutras in favor of provisional teachings to prodigal sons who flee from their father or the monks who did not think they were worthy of the bodhisattva vehicle and of perfect enlightenment.

Nichiren seems to be saying that everyone and everything is, in fact, the entity of the Law, but that some act against that reality. Keep in mind, also, that this is a translated work, so some revealing nuances may be unavoidably lacking.

illarraza
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Re: can someone explain the entity of the mystic law?

Post by illarraza » Wed Dec 13, 2017 7:37 am

nichiren-123 wrote:
Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:10 pm
I've been reading nichiren's gosho 'the entity of the mystic law' and in it nichiren begins by saying that
QUESTION: What is the entity of Myoho-renge-kyo?

Answer: All beings and their environments in any of the Ten Worlds are themselves entities of Myoho-renge-kyo.

Question: If so, then is it possible to say that all living beings, such as ourselves, are entities of the Mystic Law in its entirety?

Answer: Of course. The sutra says, “This reality [the true aspect of all phenomena] consists of the appearance, nature . . . and their consistency from beginning to end.”1

The Great Teacher Miao-lo comments on this as follows: “The true aspect invariably manifests in all phenomena, and all phenomena invariably manifest in the ten factors. The ten factors invariably manifest in the Ten Worlds, and the Ten Worlds invariably manifest in life and its environment.”2

T’ien-t’ai commented, “All phenomena consisting of the ten factors, Ten Worlds, and three thousand realms are entities of the Lotus Sutra.”
but later on he says that
Question: If all living beings are entities of Myoho-renge-kyo, then are ordinary people like ourselves who are ignorant and deluded, unenlightened and dull-witted, also entities of the Mystic Law?

Answer: Though there are a great many people in the world today, they all fall into two categories—those who believe in the provisional teachings and those who believe in the true teaching. Those who believe in the provisional and expedient teachings, such as the Nembutsu, cannot be called entities of Myoho-renge-kyo. But those who believe in the Lotus Sutra, which is the true teaching, are entities of Myoho-renge-kyo, mystic entities of the true aspect of reality.
How can this contradiction be solved?
Also, I read somewhere that expedient means are only useful if viewed from the standpoint of the lotus sutra? Can someone clarify why that is so?
Most scholars assert that this writing is inauthentic, produced by the writings of two authors, one orthodox and the other heterodox. It is in the section of the definitive collection of Gosho, the Showa Tehon, entitled, "almost certainly inauthentic". The section that is heterodox employs Tientai sect Kanjin interpretation of Medieval Tientai Original Enlightenment progression, resemblance, and reversal. What this means is that the orthodox doctrine of Shakyamuni Buddha as original eternal Buddha is reversed to mean that we common mortals are in fact Shakyamuni Buddha's teacher. No wonder you are confused.

You can find more on this in Jacqueline Stone's Some Disputed Writings in the Nichirin Corpus.

nichiren-123
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Re: can someone explain the entity of the mystic law?

Post by nichiren-123 » Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:30 am

illarraza wrote:
Wed Dec 13, 2017 7:37 am
nichiren-123 wrote:
Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:10 pm
I've been reading nichiren's gosho 'the entity of the mystic law' and in it nichiren begins by saying that
QUESTION: What is the entity of Myoho-renge-kyo?

Answer: All beings and their environments in any of the Ten Worlds are themselves entities of Myoho-renge-kyo.

Question: If so, then is it possible to say that all living beings, such as ourselves, are entities of the Mystic Law in its entirety?

Answer: Of course. The sutra says, “This reality [the true aspect of all phenomena] consists of the appearance, nature . . . and their consistency from beginning to end.”1

The Great Teacher Miao-lo comments on this as follows: “The true aspect invariably manifests in all phenomena, and all phenomena invariably manifest in the ten factors. The ten factors invariably manifest in the Ten Worlds, and the Ten Worlds invariably manifest in life and its environment.”2

T’ien-t’ai commented, “All phenomena consisting of the ten factors, Ten Worlds, and three thousand realms are entities of the Lotus Sutra.”
but later on he says that
Question: If all living beings are entities of Myoho-renge-kyo, then are ordinary people like ourselves who are ignorant and deluded, unenlightened and dull-witted, also entities of the Mystic Law?

Answer: Though there are a great many people in the world today, they all fall into two categories—those who believe in the provisional teachings and those who believe in the true teaching. Those who believe in the provisional and expedient teachings, such as the Nembutsu, cannot be called entities of Myoho-renge-kyo. But those who believe in the Lotus Sutra, which is the true teaching, are entities of Myoho-renge-kyo, mystic entities of the true aspect of reality.
How can this contradiction be solved?
Also, I read somewhere that expedient means are only useful if viewed from the standpoint of the lotus sutra? Can someone clarify why that is so?
Most scholars assert that this writing is inauthentic, produced by the writings of two authors, one orthodox and the other heterodox. It is in the section of the definitive collection of Gosho, the Showa Tehon, entitled, "almost certainly inauthentic". The section that is heterodox employs Tientai sect Kanjin interpretation of Medieval Tientai Original Enlightenment progression, resemblance, and reversal. What this means is that the orthodox doctrine of Shakyamuni Buddha as original eternal Buddha is reversed to mean that we common mortals are in fact Shakyamuni Buddha's teacher. No wonder you are confused.

You can find more on this in Jacqueline Stone's Some Disputed Writings in the Nichirin Corpus.
Is the showa tehon available in english? Or is there a gosho collection which does not contain, or at least marks the disputed gosho's?

I'm quite troubled by the fact that gosho's I always assumed to be authentic in my copy of SGI writings of nichiren daishonin may not be so... :o

narhwal90
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Re: can someone explain the entity of the mystic law?

Post by narhwal90 » Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:56 pm

There are a variety of opinions about authentic or inauthentic, same as with the early gohonzons. Sometimes there is consensus, sometimes not- occasionally new findings arise or scholarship/forensic examination reveal facts that change it. SGI's pubs are a valuable perhaps vital addition to the community but are not the whole story.

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Queequeg
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Re: can someone explain the entity of the mystic law?

Post by Queequeg » Wed Dec 13, 2017 4:14 pm

Theory and reality.

We are all Buddha in principle. This does not mean we are Buddha manifest.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

illarraza
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Re: can someone explain the entity of the mystic law?

Post by illarraza » Sun Dec 17, 2017 2:46 am

nichiren-123 wrote:
Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:30 am
illarraza wrote:
Wed Dec 13, 2017 7:37 am
nichiren-123 wrote:
Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:10 pm
I've been reading nichiren's gosho 'the entity of the mystic law' and in it nichiren begins by saying that

but later on he says that


How can this contradiction be solved?
Also, I read somewhere that expedient means are only useful if viewed from the standpoint of the lotus sutra? Can someone clarify why that is so?
Most scholars assert that this writing is inauthentic, produced by the writings of two authors, one orthodox and the other heterodox. It is in the section of the definitive collection of Gosho, the Showa Tehon, entitled, "almost certainly inauthentic". The section that is heterodox employs Tientai sect Kanjin interpretation of Medieval Tientai Original Enlightenment progression, resemblance, and reversal. What this means is that the orthodox doctrine of Shakyamuni Buddha as original eternal Buddha is reversed to mean that we common mortals are in fact Shakyamuni Buddha's teacher. No wonder you are confused.

You can find more on this in Jacqueline Stone's Some Disputed Writings in the Nichirin Corpus.
Is the showa tehon available in english? Or is there a gosho collection which does not contain, or at least marks the disputed gosho's?

I'm quite troubled by the fact that gosho's I always assumed to be authentic in my copy of SGI writings of nichiren daishonin may not be so... :o
The Showa Tehon is a collection of Nichiren's writings as they are. In the exact Kanji and Chinese characters that he used, if those That are thought to be fake, exactly as written in the first rendition of the text. Many of the Nichiren Shu translations are translated directly from the Showa Tehon, not the Modern Japaneset Gosho Zenshu. I felt exactly as you when I discovered this. It makes sense in light of Nichiren's writings on fake translations and Nikko's 26 Articles.

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