Japanese school based on the Lotus Sutra, emphasizing recitation of the daimoku
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    Soka Gakkai—The Next Ten Years Paid Member

    Soka Gakkai has its origins in Japan in the decades prior to the Second World War. It was founded as a lay organization by Tsunesaburo Makiguchi, a progressive educator and convert to Nichiren Shoshu, an umbrella school comprising some forty sects dedicated to the teachings of Nichiren. A thirteenth-century reformer, Nichiren criticized Pure Land and other schools for being subservient to the state and for not empowering common people. Seven hundred years later, this criticism was leveled once again by Makiguchi. More »
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    Green Koans Case 40: The Gift of Rice Paid Member

    CASE #40:    The Gift of Rice In a letter to a follower, Nichiren Daishonin wrote: More »
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    Green Koans Case 22: Handing Down the Lotus Paid Member

    CASE #22:    Handing Down the LotusIn the Lotus Sutra, Shakyamuni teaches: "One person, having heard, responds with joy and spreads the teachings, and the teachings in this way continue to be handed along from one to another until they reach a fiftieth person." More »
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    Green Koans Case 9: General Stone Tiger Paid Member

    BACKGROUND:Nichiren (1222 – 1282) is the founder of the sect of Japanese Buddhism that bears his name. A firm believer in the unity of faith and social action, he challenged the political and religious order of his day. One of the great prose stylists of Kamakura era, his letters are filled with references to Chinese history and legend and demonstrate an encyclopedic knowledge of Buddhist scripture. Nichiren Buddhists believe it is possible to attain Buddhahood in this lifetime by chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo (the title of the Lotus Sutra) with an attitude of intense devotion and faith. More »
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    Eugène Burnouf (1801-1852) Paid Member

    In April 1837, twenty-four Sanskrit manuscripts arrived in Paris, sent from Kathmandu by Brian Houghton Hodgson, British Resident at the Court of Nepal. They were Buddhist sutras and tantras, long lost in India but preserved in Nepal. The Société Asiatique instructed two young scholars, both named Eugène—Burnouf and Jacquet—to examine the texts. Burnouf began with the Perfection of Wisdom in Eight Thousand Stanzas. He had no idea of its importance; he only knew that it was one of the “nine dharmas,” the central texts of Nepalese Buddhism. But he didn’t like it, writing to Hodgson, “I saw only perpetual repetitions of the advantages and merits promised to those who obtain prajnaparamita. But what is this prajna itself? This is what I did not see anywhere, and what I wished to learn.” Burnouf kept reading. More »
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    The Lotus Sutra Paid Member

    The Buddha said: “Good man, suppose there are innumerable hundreds, thousands, ten thousands, millions of living beings who are undergoing various trials and suffering. If they hear of this bodhisattva Perceiver of the World’s Sounds and single-mindedly call his name, then at once he will perceive the sound of their voices and they will all gain deliverance from their trials. “If someone, holding fast to the name of Bodhisattva Perceiver of the World’s Sounds, should enter a great fire, the fire could not burn him. This would come about because of this bodhisattva’s authority and supernatural power. If one were washed away by a great flood and called upon his name, one would immediately find himself in a shallow place. More »