A call for back to basics

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Minobu
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A call for back to basics

Post by Minobu » Sat Jan 20, 2018 8:59 pm

when i say back to basics I am asking for a call to set this Buddhism right.
It's obvious there is a miss mash of authentic and fake teachings and writings which somewhere along the line needs to be set right.

We have a great crew that could really bring about more than a semblance of correct teachings and writing Nichiren Daishonin wanted the future to share in.

Maybe if Markatex ,Illarraza , Narwhal90 ,"Q" and of course Coëmgenu along with myself could somehow work on a draft of what it is all about.

A sort of coming together of people that really care about this Buddhism who want it to be as pure as it can be .

We could start slow....and build something that one day we could put up on a server that future struggling Bohdisatvas of the Earth could read and ponder.

Let it be stick in the craw of all those who are afraid to set it right and get past their status quo .

It cries out from Heaven ...the SGI shoshu break up is no coincidence...Dan Ross was no coincidence.... Q is no coincidence....

this is no coincidence...

markatex
Posts: 275
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2009 1:33 am

Re: A call for back to basics

Post by markatex » Sun Jan 21, 2018 6:03 pm

There's a list somewhere (maybe illarazza posted it) of Nichiren's authenticated writings. I don't know that I would go so far as to label the one's that aren't able to be authenticated as fakes. The ones that attempt to lend credibility to the Dai-Gohonzon and Nichiren as True Buddha - those I would avoid and reject out of hand. But the others might be worth looking at, even if they were not written by Nichiren.

I think it's important to keep in mind that ascribing writings to some venerated master who did not actually write them is looked at differently in Asian cultures. We Euro-centric types think of them as "fakes" and "forgeries," but those terms are value judgments that I'm not always comfortable with.

That being said, I think it's important to know what you're reading with regard to Nichiren's writings. Nichiren Shu doctrine is formulated from the Five Major Writings: Rissho Ankoku Ron, Kanjin Honzon Sho, Kaimoku Sho, Senji Sho, and Ho-on Jo, so those really should be looked at before delving into others.

illarraza
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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by illarraza » Mon Jan 22, 2018 2:50 am

markatex wrote:
Sun Jan 21, 2018 6:03 pm
There's a list somewhere (maybe illarazza posted it) of Nichiren's authenticated writings. I don't know that I would go so far as to label the one's that aren't able to be authenticated as fakes. The ones that attempt to lend credibility to the Dai-Gohonzon and Nichiren as True Buddha - those I would avoid and reject out of hand. But the others might be worth looking at, even if they were not written by Nichiren.

I think it's important to keep in mind that ascribing writings to some venerated master who did not actually write them is looked at differently in Asian cultures. We Euro-centric types think of them as "fakes" and "forgeries," but those terms are value judgments that I'm not always comfortable with.

That being said, I think it's important to know what you're reading with regard to Nichiren's writings. Nichiren Shu doctrine is formulated from the Five Major Writings: Rissho Ankoku Ron, Kanjin Honzon Sho, Kaimoku Sho, Senji Sho, and Ho-on Jo, so those really should be looked at before delving into others.
Nichiren stated,

"What a great pity it is that all the Japanese people are delighted to see Nichiren and his disciples and lay believers suffer at the hands of the three powerful enemies! What befell another yesterday may befall oneself today. Nichiren and his followers have but a short time to endure—merely the time it takes for frost or dew to vanish in the morning sun. When our prayers for Buddhahood are answered and we are dwelling in the true land of Tranquil Light where we will experience the boundless joy of the Law, what pity we will feel for those who sink to the bottom of the great citadel of the Avīchi hell and meet extreme suffering there! How they will envy us then!"

"Moreover, all the Japanese have become icchantikas and people of grave slander. Their offense is even worse than that of killing one’s father or mother, fomenting a rebellion, or causing a Buddha to bleed. Japan is filled with individuals whose respective offenses exceed even those of one who were to gouge out the eyes p.415of all the human beings of a major world system, or raze all temples and pagodas in the worlds of the ten directions. Consequently, the heavenly deities glare down furiously upon our nation day after day while the earthly deities tremble in continual rage. Nevertheless, all the people of our day believe themselves to be without fault, and none doubt that they will be reborn in the pure land or attain Buddhahood."

"But this is a trifling matter compared to what is to come. Hereafter, I have no doubt that the officials and the countless common people of Japan will without exception suffer a fate like that of heaps of dry grass to which a torch has been set, or like huge mountains crumbling and valleys being filled up, for our country will be attacked by enemies from abroad."

"Likewise the people of Japan, by becoming enemies of the Lotus Sutra, have brought ruin on themselves and their country. And because I proclaim this, I am called arrogant by those of little understanding. But I do not speak out of arrogance. It is simply that if I did not speak out I would not be the votary of the Lotus Sutra. Moreover, when my words prove later to be true, people will be able to believe all the more readily. And because I write this down now, the people of the future will recognize my wisdom."

" ...The remaining nine-tenths are those who chant both the daimoku and Amida Buddha’s name, those who are wavering between the two, and those who chant only the Nembutsu. People of this last group revile me as though I were an enemy of their parents or their lord, or a sworn foe from a past existence. Heads of villages, districts, and provinces hate me as though I were a traitor."

"In all Japan, I alone understand why such things are happening. At first I pondered whether or not I should speak out. Yet what was I to do? Could I turn my back on the teachings of the Buddha who is father and mother to all living beings? Resolving to bear whatever might befall me, I began to speak out, and in these more than twenty years I have been driven from my dwelling, my disciples have been killed, and I have been wounded, exiled twice, and finally was nearly beheaded. I spoke out solely because I had long known that the people of Japan would meet with great suffering, and I felt pity for them. Thoughtful persons should therefore realize that I have met these trials for their sake. If they were people who understood their obligations or who were capable of reason, then out of two blows that fall on me, they would receive one in my stead. But far from it—rather, they arouse hatred toward me, which is something I cannot understand. And lay people, not having heard the truth, either drive me from my dwelling place or hate my disciples. It is beyond comprehension. For example, even if unwittingly we mistook our parents for enemies and reviled or struck and killed them, how could we avoid the guilt of that offense? These people, failing to recognize their own rudeness, seem to think that I am rude. They are like a jealous woman with furious eyes who, unaware that when she glares at a courtesan her own expression is disagreeable, instead complains that the courtesan’s gaze is frightening."

"I, Nichiren, am the most perverse person in Japan. The reason is as follows. The seven reigns of the heavenly deities I will set aside, and the five reigns of the earthly deities are beyond my comprehension, but for the ninety reigns from the first human emperor Jimmu until the present, or during the period of more than seven hundred years since the reign of Emperor Kimmei, no one has ever been so universally hated by people in connection with either secular or Buddhist matters as Nichiren. Moriya burned down temples and pagodas, and the lay priest Kiyomori had Tōdai-ji and Kōfuku-ji temples destroyed,2 but the people of their clans did not hate them. Masakado and Sadatō3 rebelled against the imperial court, and the Great Teacher Dengyō was detested by the priests of the seven major temples of Nara, but they were still not hated by the priests, nuns, laymen, and laywomen of the entire land of Japan. In my case, however, parents, siblings, teachers, and fellow priests—every single person from the ruler on down to the common people—torment me as if I were their parents’ enemy, or even more than if I were a rebel or a robber.

Thus, sometimes I have been vilified by several hundred people; other times, besieged by several thousand, I have been attacked with swords and staves. I have been driven from my dwelling and ousted from my province. Finally, I twice incurred the wrath of the country’s ruler and was exiled first to the province of Izu and then to the island of Sado. And when, with neither provisions to sustain my life nor even garments made of wisteria vine to cover my body, I was banished to Sado in the northern sea, the priests and lay believers of that province hated me even more than the men and women of Sagami Province4 did. Abandoned in the wilderness and exposed to the snow, I sustained my life by plucking grasses."

We read in the sutras that it is customary that, when an age begins to decline, sages and worthies all seclude themselves from the world, and only slanderers, flatterers, smiling backstabbers, and those of crooked principles fill the land. To illustrate, when the water level drops, the pond is disturbed, and when the wind blows, the sea is never still. We also read that, when the latter age begins, and when droughts, epidemics, and great rains and winds come in succession, even the largehearted become narrow, and even those who seek the way adopt erroneous views. Consequently, the sutras say that father and mother, husband and wife, and elder and younger brothers will be at odds with each other, like hunter and deer, cat and mouse, or hawk and pheasant—to say nothing of relations with strangers. Priests possessed by the heavenly devil, such as Ryōkan and the others, deceived your father, Saemon no Tayū, and tried to destroy you and your brother, but you, having a wise heart, heeded Nichiren’s admonitions. Therefore, just as two wheels support a cart, or two legs carry a person, just as two wings enable a bird to fly, or just as the sun and moon aid all living beings, the efforts of you brothers have led your father to take faith in the Lotus Sutra. It is wholly due to you, Hyōe no Sakan, that matters have worked out this way.

The references to the depravity of the Japanese people are not few. Nichiren was very clear. He was also clear about the Evil and ignorant men who fake, purposely, or carelessly mis-translate the sutras and commentaries.

http://markrogow.blogspot.com/2015/01/s ... inish.html

"The translators of the newer versions of the sutras learned about T’ien-t’ai’s doctrine of three thousand realms in a single moment of life when they came to China. When they translated Sanskrit sutras into Chinese, some put T’ien-t’ai’s principle into their translations, and others claimed that the originals they had brought from India already contained it. Some of the scholars of the T’ien-t’ai school were simply pleased that other schools were expounding the same doctrine as theirs, while others praised the Buddhism of India and slighted that of China, or discarded their original doctrines and adopted new ones. These scholars yielded to their devilish nature and to foolishness. Ultimately, however, without the seed of Buddhahood, that is, the three thousand realms in a single moment of life, sentient beings cannot become Buddhas, and any statue or painting would be an object of devotion in name only."

"Moreover, among the translators of the sacred texts there have been those who were not thoroughly versed in Sanskrit or in Chinese, or those who, accustomed to the provisional teachings from their previous lives, distorted the meaning of the sutras and treatises pertaining to the true teaching so that it would accord with that of the provisional sutras and treatises. Similarly, among the Buddhist teachers in China there were those who, because they were accustomed to the provisional teachings they had known in their past lives, found the provisional sutras and treatises most congenial to their ways of thinking and declined to accept the principles of the true sutras. If they came on passages that differed even slightly from their own views in the matter, they twisted the logic of the passage and distorted it in interpretation so that it would accord with their own principles. Even if they later came to realize the truth of the matter, because they had considerations of reputation or profit in mind or did not wish to go against the inclinations of their lay supporters, they did not abandon the schools that adhered to the provisional teachings and join those that advocated the true teaching."

http://markrogow.blogspot.com/2017/10/d ... -that.html

http://markrogow.blogspot.com/2017/09/f ... ly-on.html

http://markrogow.blogspot.com/2016/05/w ... ndala.html

From Some Disputed Writings in the Nichiren Corpus
Dr. Stone
Ph.D. Dissertation
UCLA, 1990

"My own participation in the work for those volumes (The Major Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vols. 1 and 2) as one of the principal translators and editors, will account for any similarities between the English versions contained therein and the ones appearing here. The Major Writings was intended chiefly for Nichiren devotees as well as for an interested general readership. I have retranslated these seven pieces here in accordance with the rather different standards of academic Buddhist translation and my own preferences for wording. In some cases I have altered the interpretation of specific passages in ways I now feel more closely approximate the text. I have also worked from a different Japanese edition of Nichiren's collected writings (Showa teihon Nichiren Shonin ibun, 1989.)"

Her original translations of the Major Writings [MW] and the subsequent Writings of Nichiren Daishonin [WND] are derived from the Gosho Zenshu issued by the Nichiren Shoshu, admittedly Gosho not written in their original form. In addition, the translators [translations] were influenced and modified by feedback from non-Japanese speaking SGI-USA senior leaders and editors.

Article from Nichiren Shoshu Shinyo, September, 1995

"...This Gosho differs from the Gosho Zenshu and the Major Writings of Nichiren Daishonin in that the writings published in the Showa Shintei (New Edition) Gosho appear in the precise order in which they were initially written by the Daishonin and in their entire original form, that is all archaic Chinese characters and texts have been left intact, and no modifications have been made."

An SGI member stated: "If the Lotus Sutra and the Gosho were adequate by themselves and we didn't need some sort of mentoring there wouldn't be hundreds of Nichiren Sects as one could simply pick up the Gosho and all the doctrines necessary would be there."

There are more than 36 Nichiren sects. It is precisely because they follow the person rather than the Law that there are so many Nichiren sects. Many claim to follow the Lotus Sutra and Gosho, stating, "We rely on the Lotus Sutra and the Gosho", when nothing could be further from the truth. Even among those who do sincerely attempt to follow the Lotus Sutra and Gosho, many get lost in the thickets of faulty translations and an inability to act as one speaks. Nichiren Daishonin teaches, "If a man builds a road for others and someone loses his way on it, is that the fault of the road-builder? If a skilled physician gives medicine to a sick person but the sick person, repelled by the medicine, refuses to take it and dies, should one blame the physician?". You are placing the blame on the Buddha and Nichiren Daishonin when the blame lies squarely with the deceitful priests, leaders, weak-willed, and unlearned disciples. It is also due to poor karmic roots. Failing to place the blame squarely on themselves, SGI places the blame on the Buddha [Lotus Sutra] and Nichiren Daishonin.

"We read in the sutras that it is customary that, when an age begins to decline, sages and worthies all seclude themselves from the world, and only slanderers, flatterers, smiling backstabbers, and those of crooked principles fill the land. To illustrate, when the water level drops, the pond is disturbed, and when the wind blows, the sea is never still. We also read that, when the latter age begins, and when droughts, epidemics, and great rains and winds come in succession, even the largehearted become narrow, and even those who seek the way adopt erroneous views. Consequently, the sutras say that father and mother, husband and wife, and elder and younger brothers will be at odds with each other, like hunter and deer, cat and mouse, or hawk and pheasant—to say nothing of relations with strangers. Priests possessed by the heavenly devil, such as Ryōkan and the others, deceived your father, Saemon no Tayū, and tried to destroy you and your brother, but you, having a wise heart, heeded Nichiren’s admonitions. Therefore, just as two wheels support a cart, or two legs carry a person, just as two wings enable a bird to fly, or just as the sun and moon aid all living beings, the efforts of you brothers have led your father to take faith in the Lotus Sutra. It is wholly due to you, Hyōe no Sakan, that matters have worked out this way.

We read in the sutras that it is customary that, when an age begins to decline, sages and worthies all seclude themselves from the world, and only slanderers, flatterers, smiling backstabbers, and those of crooked principles fill the land. To illustrate, when the water level drops, the pond is disturbed, and when the wind blows, the sea is never still. We also read that, when the latter age begins, and when droughts, epidemics, and great rains and winds come in succession, even the largehearted become narrow, and even those who seek the way adopt erroneous views. Consequently, the sutras say that father and mother, husband and wife, and elder and younger brothers will be at odds with each other, like hunter and deer, cat and mouse, or hawk and pheasant—to say nothing of relations with strangers. Priests possessed by the heavenly devil, such as Ryōkan and the others, deceived your father, Saemon no Tayū, and tried to destroy you and your brother, but you, having a wise heart, heeded Nichiren’s admonitions. Therefore, just as two wheels support a cart, or two legs carry a person, just as two wings enable a bird to fly, or just as the sun and moon aid all living beings, the efforts of you brothers have led your father to take faith in the Lotus Sutra. It is wholly due to you, Hyōe no Sakan, that matters have worked out this way.

"It should be noted, however, that there was a total of 187 translators who carried out the task of transmitting the sutras from India to the land of China. With the exception of one man, the Tripitaka Master Kumārajīva, all the other 186, when they produced their translations, added water to the milk of the teachings and mixed poison with the medicine. But the various teachers and half-baked scholars, failing to understand this fact, do not realize that even if they were to recite the entire body of sutras or commit to memory all the twelve divisions of the scriptures, they would still find it difficult to escape the sufferings of birth and death."-- Nichiren

Nikko likewise talked about the sin of forging Gosho in his 26 articles:

Why would one think that the Japanese people had suddenly reformed their ways with the death of Nichiren? Nichiren stated that the Japanese people are more evil than those in India and Japan. Why would we believe his persecutions and persecutors would suddenly stop after Nichiren's death? What could be a greater persecution of Nichiren, than altering his teachings whether inadvertently or purposefully? It boils down to MONEY to the various sects, altering teachings to make them more palatable: "You can get whatever you desire"; "you are already a Buddha"; "Only in the SGI (Nichiren Shu, Nichiren Shoshu, HBS) will you be able to change your karma"; "Our mentor is the greatest"; Only through the auspices of the High Priest..."

There is no doubt that the Japanese people forged Gosho. It is unwise to uncritically accept the teachings that are not in Nichiren's hand with few exceptions (those that were known to exist and were destroyed in a fire such as the Kaimoku Sho (Opening of the Eyes). It is foolish to whey his early teachings as equal to his latter teachings but this is a discussion topic for another day.

markatex
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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by markatex » Tue Jan 23, 2018 12:21 am

Who says I uncritically accept them? Also, I know I might as well be talking to a brick wall, but would you be willing to at least think about laying off the War and Peace-length copy & paste jobs?

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by DGA » Tue Jan 23, 2018 4:00 am

Minobu wrote:
Sat Jan 20, 2018 8:59 pm
when i say back to basics I am asking for a call to set this Buddhism right.
It's obvious there is a miss mash of authentic and fake teachings and writings which somewhere along the line needs to be set right.

We have a great crew that could really bring about more than a semblance of correct teachings and writing Nichiren Daishonin wanted the future to share in.

Maybe if Markatex ,Illarraza , Narwhal90 ,"Q" and of course Coëmgenu along with myself could somehow work on a draft of what it is all about.

A sort of coming together of people that really care about this Buddhism who want it to be as pure as it can be .

We could start slow....and build something that one day we could put up on a server that future struggling Bohdisatvas of the Earth could read and ponder.

Let it be stick in the craw of all those who are afraid to set it right and get past their status quo .

It cries out from Heaven ...the SGI shoshu break up is no coincidence...Dan Ross was no coincidence.... Q is no coincidence....

this is no coincidence...
Consider me a sympathetic outsider.

What, exactly, are you seeking to accomplish? I don't understand what you mean by purity and impurity. That is, I don't understand what, specifically, might be the problem you want to solve. Is it textual? Doctrinal? Practical? What's the objective here? Do you think Nichiren's Buddhism is in a state of crisis? If so, what is the nature of that crisis, what is its cause and so on?

If you'd like to see a solution to a problem, it's a lot easier when you have clarity about the problem itself.

I'll go back to lurking and drinking now. Good evening, friends.

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Queequeg
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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Queequeg » Tue Jan 23, 2018 1:34 pm

The basics:

NMRK.

"I take Refuge in the sublime Dharma of the white lotus teaching"

Trust that it is:
all the doctrines possessed by the thus come one, all the freely exercised supernatural powers of the thus come one, the storehouse of all the secret essentials of the thus come one, all the most profound matters of the thus come
Reflect on that. Penetrate it. Gain it's wisdom.

Practically speaking it means, bow deeply to every being you encounter with the thoughts and words:
‘I would never dare disparage you, because you are all certain to attain buddhahood!’
Practice for oneself by deeply engraining this teaching in your Mind. Practice by mind, speech and body. Practice for others by pointing this gate out to them and help them to take up the practice for themselves and for others. In that way Lotus flowers sprout, grow, flower and seed, until the entire swamp is filled with lush lotuses and the Saha world and all the beings appear in their true aspect.

That's how I would put it this morning.
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

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Minobu
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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Minobu » Tue Jan 23, 2018 6:55 pm

DGA wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 4:00 am


Consider me a sympathetic outsider.
Not to sound ungrateful , but only one who practices this form of Buddhism would totally understand the reasoning for the "Call" .

What, exactly, are you seeking to accomplish?
There are roughly 40 Nichiren sects.
I've belonged to two . I now practice totally independently .
I don't understand what you mean by purity and impurity. That is, I don't understand what, specifically, might be the problem you want to solve. Is it textual? Doctrinal?


There are authentic and forged writings of Nichiren Shonin's that need to be addressed. It sort of hard to distinguish between them and though there are sites that tell you which is which even that can be in question and is hard to nail down at times.

Nichiren Shonin understood Buddhism. We believe Him to be a direct disciple of Lord Sakyamuni Buddha. A Bodhisattva Leader of a group of Bodhisattvas who promised to to keep the Buddha's will . It is vital to separate the fake filth from the purity of His Legacy.
Practical?
the simple practice of chanting the Odaimoku is not in peril . The view of what it is exactly is still debated, a lot of it due to forged filth implanted into the various sects and accepted by some.
What's the objective here? Do you think Nichiren's Buddhism is in a state of crisis? If so, what is the nature of that crisis, what is its cause and so on?
It has always been in a state of crisis. The government at the time exiled Him, had ronin almost beheading Him and much more.

What's more it is in a state of crisis due to false view of Buddhism. It causes great harm to sentients living in the degenerative age and being told to follow ineffective methods to Buddhahood and liberation.
If you'd like to see a solution to a problem, it's a lot easier when you have clarity about the problem itself.

I'll go back to lurking and drinking now
.


Good evening, friends.
cheers and thanks for your concern. any form of relationship to Lotus Buddhism sets you apart from the chaff

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Queequeg » Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:25 pm

Minobu wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 6:55 pm
DGA wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 4:00 am


Consider me a sympathetic outsider.
Not to sound ungrateful , but only one who practices this form of Buddhism would totally understand the reasoning for the "Call" .
DGA is alright. He's no votary by our general standards, but then that definition has a tendency to be whittled to the point that we find some fellows yelling into the ether of the internet about how they are an island of one. We are blessed with their visits here at DW from time to time and it makes for such fun!
I don't understand what you mean by purity and impurity. That is, I don't understand what, specifically, might be the problem you want to solve. Is it textual? Doctrinal?


There are authentic and forged writings of Nichiren Shonin's that need to be addressed. It sort of hard to distinguish between them and though there are sites that tell you which is which even that can be in question and is hard to nail down at times.

Nichiren Shonin understood Buddhism. We believe Him to be a direct disciple of Lord Sakyamuni Buddha. A Bodhisattva Leader of a group of Bodhisattvas who promised to to keep the Buddha's will . It is vital to separate the fake filth from the purity of His Legacy.
And to an extent, this is why teachers are needed. Not that teachers are easy to come by. Especially outside of Japan.

I bow in gratitude to those intrepid little Japanese men and women who brought this teaching to the West in their hearts. I'm especially grateful to those priests who brave the language barrier and culture shock to propagate here.

What we have here in the West in terms of learning is paltry compared to what one finds in Japan. Most scholarship and commentary on Nichiren is still in Japanese and remains untranslated. There is no real support system for bringing teachers to the West outside SG and NShoshu. NShu has possibilities, but still not there. In an ideal world, I hit the lotto and become one of those patrons who keeps monks and nuns the ways some people keep a flock of pigeons. I'm kidding and I'm also absolutely serious.

The insistence on purity is problematic. This is Mappo. As Dengyo Daishi remarked, paraphrasing, to encounter a sage in Mappo would be like encountering a tiger in a market place. Unpack that and let that sink in. Here we have a bunch of atomized independents, skeptically looking at each other, demanding purity of each other, and in the mean time, we practice alone, hardly a means of building a community that could support teachers and leaders.

At this point in time, as far as I'm concerned, fellowship in refuge in the Daimoku, is good enough for me. I trust that the Daimoku has the power to even out the kinks over time. In the meantime, work needs doin. "Never let its flow cease!"
What's the objective here? Do you think Nichiren's Buddhism is in a state of crisis? If so, what is the nature of that crisis, what is its cause and so on?
It has always been in a state of crisis. The government at the time exiled Him, had ronin almost beheading Him and much more.

What's more it is in a state of crisis due to false view of Buddhism. It causes great harm to sentients living in the degenerative age and being told to follow ineffective methods to Buddhahood and liberation.
The Crisis started in 1054. Its called Mappo. Nichiren resolved the Crisis by teaching the Daimoku. The present phase of the Crisis is not really finding the authentic teaching... NMRK is the authentic teaching for Mappo. This crisis you suggest is a manufactured crisis. You don't need to reinvent the wheel. All this concern over authentic and inauthentic is kind of splitting hairs.
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

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Queequeg » Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:47 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:25 pm
All this concern over authentic and inauthentic is kind of splitting hairs.
The reason I say this is not because it doesn't matter whether a particular letter is authentic or not, but rather, there are enough certified authentic writings that one could just focus on those and have more than enough to study for many years.

Further, some of these texts that are vociferously denounced as inauthentic - frankly, the criticism is often convoluted and takes certain positions as assumptions that are themselves worthy of skepticism.

Take this whole Hongaku thing - while that term has been around for a long time - centuries - the obsession with analyzing Buddhist teachings on the basis of a particular definition of that term is only a few decades old.

AFAIK, none of us is enlightened. None of us knows for sure.

Here I'll quote the Canki Sutta

"But, Master Gotama, in what way is there the preservation of truth? How does one preserve truth? We ask Master Gotama about the preservation of truth."
"If a person has faith, Bharadvaja, he preserves truth when he says: 'My faith is thus'; but he does not yet come to the definite conclusion: 'Only this is true, anything else is wrong.' In this way, Bharadvaja, there is preservation of truth; in this way he preserves the truth; in this way we describe the preservation of truth. But as yet there is no discovery of truth."
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

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Minobu
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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Minobu » Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:53 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:25 pm

DGA is alright.
i've always liked him as well...it was not a personal attack



Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:25 pm
This crisis you suggest is a manufactured crisis. You don't need to reinvent the wheel. All this concern over authentic and inauthentic is kind of splitting hairs.
Really now...
so like ......
speechless...
which is pretty much so not me....


ok composure....a call for composure minobu...
you Q are my main refuge in learning for the past year and half...

i thought you to be totally absent of the mediocrity that got us into this mess in the first place.

so we are now called to celebrate mediocrity.

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Minobu » Tue Jan 23, 2018 8:45 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:47 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:25 pm
All this concern over authentic and inauthentic is kind of splitting hairs.
The reason I say this is not because it doesn't matter whether a particular letter is authentic or not, but rather, there are enough certified authentic writings that one could just focus on those and have more than enough to study for many years.

Further, some of these texts that are vociferously denounced as inauthentic - frankly, the criticism is often convoluted and takes certain positions as assumptions that are themselves worthy of skepticism.

Take this whole Hongaku thing - while that term has been around for a long time - centuries - the obsession with analyzing Buddhist teachings on the basis of a particular definition of that term is only a few decades old.

AFAIK, none of us is enlightened. None of us knows for sure.

Here I'll quote the Canki Sutta

"But, Master Gotama, in what way is there the preservation of truth? How does one preserve truth? We ask Master Gotama about the preservation of truth."
"If a person has faith, Bharadvaja, he preserves truth when he says: 'My faith is thus'; but he does not yet come to the definite conclusion: 'Only this is true, anything else is wrong.' In this way, Bharadvaja, there is preservation of truth; in this way he preserves the truth; in this way we describe the preservation of truth. But as yet there is no discovery of truth."
ok further to this subject of accepting mediocrity and the Hongaku thing.

It's only a few decades that the Dai gohonzon has been up for debunking, to the extent it is now.
Yeah for sure it has always been a topic amongst other sects of Nichiren besides ShoShu, but never has it so determined "VIEW" .

"VIEW" is everything after the initial faith has been sprouted.

what you fill that head with is vital...
look at my mess...

if i never had morons telling me the Gohonzon is what to be prayed to and it's not inside you , like a fukidan shabucho told me one sunday morning in a youth meeting after my revelation of it being inside you and is you....

all the weird mixed up crap like The high Priest can be chanted to like rev. Nagasaka told us is good faith. the high priest is like gohonzon...he told us that...When he came to Toronto i would sit behind him during gongyo and hold the end of his robe whilst chanting like it was some mystic thing...
how did i end up with that crap in me head...

the daigohonzon i mean really ..how many people focused all their attention on saving up to go there and chant to it like it was something special...

the list is endless and my previous post stands...


hongaku is a view to be understood for what it is...for somehow it creeped into the Nichiren "Thing" ...

with incorrect view there can be no purity of practice...faith practice study....study what...some other guys stuff...told to us is authentic...

maybe you can read fake news and see it for what it is and disregard it...but others read fake news and vote for presidents based on it.

if at any time in the world's history...this is a watershed moment of clarity ..clarity of gender equality , equality of race and truth ...

the me too movement is about my practice as well...as is the time's up movement...

so saying it is just splitting hairs is just lowering the bar to mediocrity.

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Minobu » Tue Jan 23, 2018 9:06 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:47 pm

Here I'll quote the Canki Sutta

"But, Master Gotama, in what way is there the preservation of truth? How does one preserve truth? We ask Master Gotama about the preservation of truth."
"If a person has faith, Bharadvaja, he preserves truth when he says: 'My faith is thus'; but he does not yet come to the definite conclusion: 'Only this is true, anything else is wrong.' In this way, Bharadvaja, there is preservation of truth; in this way he preserves the truth; in this way we describe the preservation of truth. But as yet there is no discovery of truth."
what that means is that what ever the person has faith in, to them is truth. he knows it is by faith he thinks it truth so he is wise for knows he should not lay disclaim to everything else . In that way if he is wrong in his faith the actual truth is still preserved.

and thus the truth has not been discovered. and he leaves himself open to learning.

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Queequeg » Tue Jan 23, 2018 11:10 pm

Minobu wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:53 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:25 pm
This crisis you suggest is a manufactured crisis. You don't need to reinvent the wheel. All this concern over authentic and inauthentic is kind of splitting hairs.
Really now...
so like ......
speechless...
which is pretty much so not me....

ok composure....a call for composure minobu...
you Q are my main refuge in learning for the past year and half...

i thought you to be totally absent of the mediocrity that got us into this mess in the first place.

so we are now called to celebrate mediocrity.
Pass the LaBatts. :cheers:
Minobu wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 8:45 pm

ok further to this subject of accepting mediocrity and the Hongaku thing.
Whoa. That's not what I suggested. I didn't say anything about accepting or not accepting. I suggested not getting wrapped up in the hype. Forget the word, hongaku. It doesn't appear in Nichiren's writings. Stick to authentic writings. There is more than enough there to develop your practice. Seriously.

Look at Kanjin no Honzon sho - Nichiren explains that one must believe that the whole body of the Buddha is to be found in our mind.
It's only a few decades that the Dai gohonzon has been up for debunking, to the extent it is now.
Yeah for sure it has always been a topic amongst other sects of Nichiren besides ShoShu, but never has it so determined "VIEW" .
Let's make something clear - when Soka Gakkai brought Nichiren's teachings to the West, they brought a particular interpretation taught by Nichiren Shoshu. Among Nichiren sects, they stand apart. Radically so. No one else believes in the Dai Gohonzon. For people outside Nichiren Shoshu, its an oddity.

Just let it go, dude. Pay it no mind. You'll feel much better. Worrying about it, hating on it, its just more obsessing over it. Don't mind and it won't matter.
"VIEW"...
what you fill that head with is vital...
look at my mess...


Precisely. Stop obsessing about it and it goes away. Poof. They become just another group genuflecting around a charismatic icon. :shrug:

Stick to the 10 gosho Nikko identified as definitive.
the daigohonzon i mean really ..how many people focused all their attention on saving up to go there and chant to it like it was something special...
According to the Pali tradition, in the last life before he ascended to heaven to await his birth as Buddha, Shakyamuni was born as a king who gave away everything - the source of wealth for his kingdom, his treasures, his servants... anyone who came to him, he gave them whatever they asked for. An evil brahmin approached him and asked for his wife and child. The king gave them away without hesitation. The Brahmin enslaved the queen and prince and treated them terribly. And yet, it was that unreserved generosity, the perfection of giving, that enabled him to become a Buddha.

In the Lotus Sutra, in a past life, the Buddha was a king who promised to serve anyone who taught the Lotus Sutra to him. A brahmin came to him and offered to teach him if the king would become his servant. The king served the brahmin, but its not clear the brahmin ever taught him even a single phrase of the Lotus. It may have been a scam. But it didn't matter. What mattered was the sincerity of the king in seeking the Lotus Sutra.

It doesn't matter that the Daigohonzon is just a plank of wood with a gohonzon transcribed onto it. What mattered was the sincerity of those who sought it out. That's what mattered.

Once its pointed out to you, though, that its just a plank of wood, its hard to see it something other than a plank of wood.
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

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by narhwal90 » Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:20 am

Though the dai-gohonzon is interesting to me in its own right, I am far more intrigued by the original gohonzon made by the other 1st gen disciples, there is considerable variety. For example, to what extent is efficacy related to similarity to Nichiren's designs eg what design elements are essential; is there a minimum gohonzon? Is a copy of a Nikko original gohonzon appropriate for a practitioner of that lineage vs a copy of a Nichiren original? Or is it sufficient for the gohonzon of whatever design to evoke desire to chant and any of them will do?

Such questions stir my NSA lizard brain and make me wonder about my own attachments to view.

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by markatex » Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:31 am

Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:47 pm
The reason I say this is not because it doesn't matter whether a particular letter is authentic or not, but rather, there are enough certified authentic writings that one could just focus on those and have more than enough to study for many years.
Yes, exactly. BTW, what are the other writings Nikko taught as major writings besides the five I mentioned? I know a couple of them, but I forget the rest.

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Queequeg » Wed Jan 24, 2018 5:44 pm

markatex wrote:
Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:31 am
Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:47 pm
The reason I say this is not because it doesn't matter whether a particular letter is authentic or not, but rather, there are enough certified authentic writings that one could just focus on those and have more than enough to study for many years.
Yes, exactly. BTW, what are the other writings Nikko taught as major writings besides the five I mentioned? I know a couple of them, but I forget the rest.
Here's a list:

*Rissho Ankoku Ron - On Establishing the Peace of the Nation
Sho Hokke Daimoku Sho - On Reciting the Daimoku of the Lotus Sutra
*Kaimoku Sho - Opening of the Eyes
*Kanjin no Honzon Sho - Object of Devotion for Contemplating the Mind
Hokke Shuyo Sho - Choosing the Heart of the Lotus Sutra
*Senji Sho - Selection of the Time
*Ho'on Sho - On Repaying Debts of Gratitude
Shimoyama Goshosoku - Letter to Shimoyama
Shishin Gohon Sho - Four Depths of Faith and Five Stages of Practice
Honzon Mondo Sho - Questions and Answers on the Gohonzon

If one calls for basics, these have been identified by Nikko Shonin, one of Nichiren's six senior disciples and his personal secretary for many years, as the basics. Master those, and you have mastered the basics of Nichiren's teachings. The five marked with asterisks are listed as the five most important writings.
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

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Minobu » Wed Jan 24, 2018 5:56 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 11:10 pm


Once its pointed out to you, though, that its just a plank of wood, its hard to see it something other than a plank of wood.
i don't think i made myself clear.
but i will try using this quote.

somehow people are led to have a strong protective faith in this plank of wood.

it's like the old movie where a coke bottle falls somewhere in Africa out of a plane and some dude who sees it fall thinks it fell from heaven and wants to return it being a faithful person.

It's so wrong and misleading in practice....first up ..the very idea that this is a special gohonzon distracts one from trying to develop and find it within.
which is the Prime Directive from Nichiren Shonin.

I'm not focusing on the whole affair here just using the affair to show something.

It messes up one's practice.
Same with study....

If you read something and ponder it and find out years later it was just a another plank of wood scenario , you wasted time, studied filth , and molded your life around it.

When i say celebrating mediocrity , i mean just that.. don't worry about it dude, let it go, so what if you tried to fit hongaku into a creationist theme for over a year and now you find out Nichiren Shonin never even wrote the word....

So what if when someone told you online , a trusted person who is full of knowledge that MyoHo RenGe Kyo is an entity...Which led you to try to fit the square peg into the triangle hole.

Let it go dude and read these gosho...a year and a half later.

It's the same with Tien Tai ism....
How far down that rabbit hole did Nichiren go...Did He sort of lighten up on the teaching and FOCUS on something other. How much did He borrow and leave aside?

It's important to me to know this stuff..I never was into the practice to get easy access to city parking.
i never chanted for chicks...i ignored all that and put it down to stuff for the mass consumption for the "Great Unwashed"

The very independent movement was started to unveil the truth .


so i asked for a call to get back to basics...and then immediately focused on the wheat and the chaff.

actually no even the chaff if it is truth has meaning here.
separate the wheat from the filth .

Written and taught Filth that is specifically not Lotus Buddhism.

even the words Lotus Buddhism ...who coined that phrase? is it misleading in a subtle way?


I dunno...i just think there could be a legacy of putting all the truth together and literally setting the filth aside forever...

future generations need it.

Heaven would rejoice.

i asked to be part of it...

call to help and then....
Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:47 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:25 pm
All this concern over authentic and inauthentic is kind of splitting hairs.
The reason I say this is not because it doesn't matter whether a particular letter is authentic or not, but rather, there are enough certified authentic writings that one could just focus on those and have more than enough to study for many years.


edit note without this it is meaningless
It's the same with Tien Tai ism....

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by markatex » Wed Jan 24, 2018 7:46 pm

Thanks QQ!

There are certainly problematic ideas - the Dai-gohonzon business and Nikko as Nichiren's sole successor, namely. And with regard to hongaku, the idea that "everything is perfect just the way it is," is certainly problematic. We can and should call those things out, but I don't think we need to use words like "filth." I come from the Southern U.S. and was raised in a very evangelical Christian environment, and anything that smacks of that really rubs me the wrong way. We can do without that kind of hubris.

Anyway, QQ listed 10 of Nichiren's writings that we all agree are the basis of this tradition of Buddhism. We could discuss the central point(s) of each of them and start from there.

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by markatex » Wed Jan 24, 2018 7:52 pm

It's the same with Tien Tai ism....
How far down that rabbit hole did Nichiren go...Did He sort of lighten up on the teaching and FOCUS on something other. How much did He borrow and leave aside?
He borrowed a LOT. I'm not sure what you mean by "lightening up on the teaching." Off hand, I'd say that ichinen sanzen and the Five Periods and Eight Teachings are the main things from Tendai that are most important in understanding Nichiren Buddhism.

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Re: A call for back to basics

Post by Queequeg » Wed Jan 24, 2018 8:03 pm

Minobu wrote:
Wed Jan 24, 2018 5:56 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 11:10 pm


Once its pointed out to you, though, that its just a plank of wood, its hard to see it something other than a plank of wood.
i don't think i made myself clear.
but i will try using this quote.

somehow people are led to have a strong protective faith in this plank of wood.

it's like the old movie where a coke bottle falls somewhere in Africa out of a plane and some dude who sees it fall thinks it fell from heaven and wants to return it being a faithful person.
In undertaking to return the bottle, that person is putting their faith and honesty into practice, reinforcing those habits of mind, speech and body. From the perspective of Buddhist training, the pretext prompting the practice of wholesome acts is, believe this or not, irrelevant. The nature of reality and our delusion is such that ANY and ALL basis of our activities of mind, speech and body are in reality, utterly empty of essential significance, except from the perspective of the Buddha who constantly appears, leading all beings to awakening. What matters is the wholesome activity.

Aside - This, is where the dangers and pitfall of what has been identified as Hongaku Shiso rears its head. "Anything and everything we do is under the guidance of the Buddha." What this sentiment betrays is willful ignorance of the teaching that karmic retribution for unwholesome activities is also the teaching of the Buddha and there is no escape from karmic retribution which is itself, from the perspective of dharma, an edifying experience. But if you've heard the Buddha explain the cause of suffering, then why undertake causes that bring about suffering? There is no moral failing in unwholesome activities - just unnecessary suffering. If one has the clarity to see this, then one would avoid unwholesome activity.

But to the point - The father promises toys, and the children come running out of the burning house. The father gives a menial job to his son who has lost all confidence in himself, puts him to work which enables him to develop a sense of his worth. The guide conjures a phantom city so that the travelers on the verge of giving up on the journey can rest. The evil Brahmin promises the Lotus Sutra and the King offers himself in devotion to the Dharma. The father sends word that he is dead to shock his children out of their stupors prompting them to take the medicine he left for them.

Every act of sincere devotion to the Buddhadharma is never lost or wasted.

The problem with the Daigohonzon, as far as I am concerned, is not that it may not be what it is purported to be. The real problem is that some human beings use it as a club to batter others into submission. And others use reaction to it as a club to batter others. Its when Dharma is turned to samsaric purposes that problems arise. When the expedient is no longer necessary, when the expedient just becomes a fruitless and painful austerity, just drop it.

When something becomes chaff, what second thought in dropping it? At the same time, that chaff served a purpose in the growth of the wheat.

Here's another movie to meditate on that actually illustrates the Buddha's approach taught in the Lotus Sutra -

In the Karate Kid, Miyagi Sensei has the kid wash and wax his cars - "Wax on, wax off." The kid gets angry, feeling like he's just being taken advantage of for free labor. Then Miyagi Sensei shows him, while he was waxing and polishing the cars, he was actually learning how to block punches.
It's so wrong and misleading in practice....first up ..the very idea that this is a special gohonzon distracts one from trying to develop and find it within.
It enables people to develop the capacity for single minded concentration.
which is the Prime Directive from Nichiren Shonin.
If Nichiren had a Prime Directive, it is this: Namu Myoho Renge Kyo.

If you are really practicing this, then you are continually penetrating to subtler and subtler aspects of Buddha Wisdom. You are continually identifying chaff and leaving it behind.
If you read something and ponder it and find out years later it was just a another plank of wood scenario , you wasted time, studied filth , and molded your life around it.
I hate to break this to you but there isn't a dharma in this Threefold Worlds that is untainted with filth.
When i say celebrating mediocrity , i mean just that.. don't worry about it dude, let it go, so what if you tried to fit hongaku into a creationist theme for over a year and now you find out Nichiren Shonin never even wrote the word....
I hate to break this to you, but people have been warning you off that rabbit hole since you got stuck on it. The record is here in this forum. That whole thing was a mess of your own making.
How much did He borrow and leave aside?
Indeed. If you have the time, inclination and capacity, it behooves you to start at the Deer Park (Hinayana Teachings) and work your way to Eagle Peak (the Lotus Sutra), and master every teaching along that way. If you lack the time, inclination and/or capacity, here's the crib note:

Namu Myoho Renge Kyo.
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

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