Nichiren, 1222 – 1282

Nichiren Feb. 16th 1222 – October 1282

Nichiren  Daishonin    Compassionate Sage Messenger

Born in a small fishing village in Eastern Japan,  in 1222, he had caring and loving parents. At age 12 he entered Seicho-ji Temple for schooling and to study for the priesthood. In 1239, as a priest he began going to various Temples and academic centers to complete his Ph.D in the Buddha Dharma studying all the various Buddhist Sutra’s, teachings, schools, sects, and doctrines.
In 1253, he founded his new Buddhist School, based on the teachings of the Lotus Sutra. On Tien Tai Chi’I’s  proof of the Buddha-way, in deference to the provisional Diamond, Heart and other Buddhist doctrines. He chanted Namu~Myoho~Renge~Kyo, the infinite title of the Lotus Sutra, for the first time and declared  that all people are capable of attaining the Buddha-way and enlightenment in the present Latter Day of the Law.  He names himself Nichiren [Sun-Lotus.] and later is given the name Daishonin [Great Sage]
Nichiren lived in the middle dark ages and, history records that much the population died of the plague, political power struggles, war and natural causes in his lifetime.  By the time he was 35 he was convinced that the Buddhist gods had abandoned his country of Japan, and could see that other countries were also in the throws of darkness, illusion, power struggles and death.  He questioned why his country was in turmoil and realized the times were such that no one was practicing life on the basis of sincere spiritual sustain-ability and correct Buddha-way as explained within the Lotus Sutra  regarding the time and practice.  As people began to follow his teachings, he took on the government of the day and made various levels of government and the other Buddhist Sects very angry at his remonstrations. Thus, he began fourteen years of persecution, exile and defamation for claiming that the Lotus Sutra was the Way out of all the difficulties.  Like all new change many people were very upset with this Buddhist priest claiming to be a votary of the Lotus Sutra and a messenger of the Latter Day of the Law.
Nichiren Daishonin realized that historically, the Latter Day of the Law had begun about 220 years earlier and that the ways of the Buddha Dharma of the Former and Middle Day of the Law no longer applied.  Following the predictions of the Lotus Sutra he realized that the 10,000 year Law of Sowing is the time for All humans to seek their Buddha  nature and empower themselves  with the ability to obtain answers to all of life’s challenges, peaceful means in this life-time, not in some other universe or other worldly pure land.  From the Lotus Sutra’s perspective and  Nichiren’s perspective; Earth is the pure land, people need to protect the environment, find personal time for faith, practice and study in the here and Now. Empowering themselves and others through experience and wisdom. This is the Buddha-way, of the Latter Day of the Law, the Buddha Way of Sowing, the pathway to Enlightenment and Nirvana. Wishing to leave a legacy for future generations, he inscribed the Gohonzon Mandala offering an object worthy of great respect for all humans to connect with their Buddha nature. As the Nichiren School took root like the Teacher/Messengers before him, he taught the way to wisdom and enlightenment includes faith, practice, study and meditation. He taught that the fundamental practice, in our present Latter Day of the Law, is through the sound meditation chanting of Namu~Myoho~Renge~Kyo, offering a enlightenment as we are!  There are over 500 historical letters and some 73 original Gohonzons, he shared and gave to his followers.  Today, nearly 800 years later, some 25 million people follow this Buddha way of the Lotus Sutra, a philosophy for our day and age. A true Sage!
           On October 13, 1282 in his 60th year  Nichiren Daishonin leaves earth.   
Thus It Has Been Shared, Respectfully, TM Henry

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