February 6, 2022
Reception Hall, Head Temple Taisekiji

On this occasion of the February Kosen-rufu Shodai Ceremony, conducted here today at the Head Temple, I would like to express my heartfelt appreciation to those who have participated, based on firm faith, under the chaotic conditions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

As you know, this is the month when our Founder, Nichiren Daishonin was born. On February 16th of the first year of Jo-o (1222), Nichiren Daishonin made his advent into this world, as Shakyamuni already had prophesized in the Lotus Sutra. The Daishonin’s transient status was [the reincarnation of] Bodhisattva Jogyo (Superior Practice), while his true identity is the True Buddha from the infinite past of kuon-ganjo.

The purpose of his advent was to lead all those without the seed of Buddhahood in the Latter Day of the Law to enter the Buddha way, and enable them to attain Buddhahood in one’s present form, through Myoho-Renge-Kyo, the enlightenment of the True Buddha of the infinite past of kuon-ganjo.

However, the current situation is that many people in the world today lose sight of the correct Law due to the poison of slander. As a result, they are suffering the direst distress.

Teaching the Daishonin’s correct Law and performing shakubuku to those who suffer great misery is the essential mission that we are expected to fulfill.

The Daishonin teaches the following in the Rissho ankoku-ron (On Securing the Peace of the Land through the Propagation of True Buddhism):

When I, with my limited knowledge, read the sutras, I find that all people have gone against the correct Law and become wholly devoted to evil doctrines. This is why all the guardian deities have abandoned this country and sages have left this land, not to return. Seizing this opportunity, devils and demons rush in, bringing disasters and calamities. This is most fearful. We must speak out!

(Gosho, p. 234; The Gosho of Nichiren Daishonin, Vol. 2, p. 3)

The Daishonin teaches that the root cause for the nation being in turmoil, disasters, and the people suffering from the agony of misfortune and confusion, is solely due to the poison of the slander of heretical teachings. Unless we eliminate these slanders, the people’s true happiness, world peace, and the security of the land will not be realized.

Herein lies the most important reason for us to exert our utmost efforts to refute slanders and do shakubuku.

In the Gosho, On Chanting the Daimoku of the Lotus Sutra (Sho hokke daimoku-sho), the Daishonin expounds as follows:

In the Latter Day of the Law, there are many who do not possess the seed of Buddhahood. There are only a few who possess it. Thus, there is no doubt that the people [in the latter Day of the Law] will fall into the evil paths. [Since they are going to fall into the evil paths one way or another,] we should strongly teach and make them listen to the Lotus Sutra and let them form a poison-drum relationship with it. Thus, now is certainly the time to create a reverse relationship by propagating the Lotus Sutra.

(Gosho, p. 231)

The “poison-drum relationship” indicates the attainment of enlightenment through a reverse-relationship, despite the slander of true Buddhism. It is said that when a drum smeared with poison is beaten, all those who hear the sound of the drum will die, whether they wish to hear it or not. Even if someone hears the Law and opposes it, through the relationship of hearing the mystic Law, this person will eventually sever his or her earthly desires and attain Buddhahood. This is likened to beating a drum smeared with poison, [which is a metaphor expounded in the Nirvana Sutra.]

This means that all living beings inherently possess the Buddha nature. They can attain enlightenment through listening to the true Law, awakening to it, and practicing it. Now, in the Latter Day of the Law, even the common mortals without the seed of Buddhahood can be saved without fail in the future, if they are led to listen to Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo of the Three Great Secret Laws and form a relationship with the true Law.

The Daishonin also teaches the following in the Gosho, Attaining Enlightenment at the Initial Stage of Faith through the Lotus Sutra (Hokke shoshin jobutsu-sho):

If they hear the Lotus Sutra, which enables people to attain Buddhahood, this [encounter] will sow the seed of [Buddhahood] into their lives and they eventually will attain enlightenment without fail. Therefore, Tiantai and Miaole follow this notion and expound in their commentaries that they should tirelessly teach the Lotus Sutra. It is like those who falter and fall to the ground and who are able to use that very ground to push themselves up to stand again. In the same way, even if they descend into hell, they will rise again before long and attain Buddhahood. The people in the world today have turned their backs on the Lotus Sutra and, for that offense, they will undoubtedly fall into hell. Therefore, in any case, one should strongly teach and make people listen to the teachings of the Lotus Sutra.

(Gosho, p. 1316)

As the Daishonin teaches in this Gosho passage, we must strongly teach the Lotus Sutra—Myoho-Renge-Kyo of sowing the seed of the true cause—to those who do not possess the seed of Buddhahood.

Now, in the Latter Day of the Law, when the condition of the world is extremely chaotic due to the poison of heretical teachings, it is important to eradicate slanders with shakubuku, instead of the shoju method applied during the Middle Day of the Law.

Today, Nichiren Shoshu is powerfully advancing forth, based on unity between the priesthood and laity in the spirit of itai doshin, as we aim toward the achievement of the propagation of Myoho-Renge-Kyo throughout the entire world.

At this very time, I sincerely pray that the members of all Hokkeko chapters and organizations will unite as one, based on the spirit of itai doshin, and courageously perform shakubuku, keeping in mind this year’s slogan described in the poster from the Commemorative Committee for the 800th Anniversary of the Advent of Our Founder Nichiren Daishonin, “The Year of Advancement with the Spirit to Repay Our Debt of Gratitude” and “Let’s Do Shakubuku Now!” With these efforts, I hope you will achieve this year’s shakubuku goals without fail.


御法主日如上人猊下お言葉
二月度 広布唱題会の砌

令和四年二月六日
於 総本山客殿

 

本日は、二月度の広布唱題会に当たりまして、皆様には、新型コロナウイルス 感染症によって世情騒然としているなか、信心強盛に参詣され、まことに御苦労 さまでございます。

 既に皆様も御承知の通り、今月は、宗祖日蓮大聖人御聖誕の月であります。

日蓮大聖人様は、貞応元(一二二二)年二月十六日、法華経において予証せら れた通り、外用上行菩薩、内証久遠元初自受用身の御本仏として末法に御出現あ そばされました。

その御出現の目的は、久遠元初の妙法蓮華経をもって、末法本未有善の衆生を して、ことごとく仏道に入らしめ、即身成仏せしめるためであります。

しかるに、世間の多くの人達は、謗法の害毒によって正しい法を見失い、塗炭 の苦しみに喘いでいるのが現状であります。

こうした苦悩に喘ぐ人々に、正しい大聖人様の仏法を説き、折伏をしていくこ とが、今日、我々に課せられた、まことに大事な使命であります。

 大聖人様は『立正安国論』に、

「倩微管を傾け聊経文を披きたるに、世皆正に背き人悉く悪に帰す。故に善神 国を捨てゝ相去り、聖人所を辞して還らず。是を以て魔来たり鬼来たり、災起 こり難起こる。言はずんばあるべからず。恐れずんばあるべからず」

(御書二三四)

と仰せられ、世の中が乱れ、人々が不幸と混乱と苦悩に喘いでいる根本原因は、 邪義邪宗の謗法の害毒にあり、この謗法の対治なくして、人々の幸せも、世の中 の平和も、国土の安穏も実現することはできないと仰せられているのであります。

ここに今、私どもが全力を傾注して、折伏を行じていかなければならない大事 な理由が存しているのであります。

 されば『唱法華題目抄』には、

「末代には善無き者は多く善有る者は少なし。故に悪道に堕せん事疑ひ無し。 同じくは法華経を強ひて説き聞かせて毒鼓の縁と成すべきか。然れば法華経を 説いて謗縁を結ぶべき時節なる事諍ひ無き者をや」

(同二三一)

と仰せであります。 この「毒鼓の縁」とは、既に皆様も御承知の通り、毒薬を塗った太鼓を打つと、

その音を聞くすべての者が死ぬと言われており、たとえ法を聞いて反対しても、 やがて煩悩を断じて得道できることを毒鼓、つまり毒を塗った太鼓を打つことに 譬えているのであります。

すなわち、一切衆生には皆、仏性が具わっており、正しい法を聞き、発心・修 行することによって成仏できると言っているのであります。つまり、たとえ末法 本未有善の荒凡夫であったとしても、三大秘法の南無妙法蓮華経を聞かせること によって、正法と縁を結ばせ、必ず救済することができるのであります。

 されば『法華初心成仏抄』には、

「仏になる法華経を耳にふれぬれば、是を種として必ず仏になるなり。されば 天台・妙楽も此の心を以て、強ひて法華経を説くべしとは釈し給へり。譬へば 人の地に依りて倒れたる者の、返って地をおさへて起つが如し。地獄には堕つ れども、疾く浮かんで仏になるなり。当世の人何となくとも法華経に背く失に 依りて、地獄に堕ちん事疑ひなき故に、とてもかくても法華経を強ひて説き聞 かすべし」

(同一三一六)

と仰せられ、末法今時の本未有善の衆生に対しては、なんとしてでも法華経、す なわち本因下種の妙法蓮華経を強いて説くべきであると仰せられているのであり ます。

すなわち、邪義邪宗の害毒によって混乱を極めている今時末法においては、像 法過時の如き摂受ではなく、折伏をもって謗法を対治することが、いかに大事で あるかを御教示あそばされているのであります。

今、宗門は僧俗一致・異体同心して、一天広布へ向けて力強く前進をしており ます。

この時に当たり、すべての講中は、記念局の本年度のポスターにある「報恩躍 進の年 今こそ 折伏の時」のスローガンを胸に、講中一結・異体同心して、勇 猛果敢に折伏を行じ、もって必ず本年度の誓願を達成されますよう心から念じ、 本日の挨拶といたします。