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Record of the Orally Transmitted
Teachings of Nichiren Daishonin

- Ongi Kuden -

Chapter 15: Emerging from the Earth [Yujutsu]

'From the Earth' denotes the place in which the seed of Buddhahood of the living beings of the ten worlds is born. 'Emerging' refers to the living beings of the ten worlds coming out from the mother's womb. (Gosho Zenshu p. 799)

The sutra states, "There is no need for you to protect this sutra. Why? Because in this saha-world of mine there are bodhisattvas and mahasattvas who are as numerous as the sands of sixty thousand Ganges, and each of these bodhisattvas has a retinue equal to the sands of sixty thousand Ganges. After I have entered extinction these persons will be able to protect, read, recite and widely preach this sutra." (LS p. 213, 3LS p. 238)

The whole of the Yujutsu [15th] Chapter [of the Lotus Sutra] is devoted to the mission of bodhisattvas sent by the original Buddha. The practice of these bodhisattvas is Nam Myoho Renge Kyo. This is what the sutra means by 'reciting.' 'Preaching' in the sutra means to lead all the people of Japan to the pure land of Eagle Peak. (Gosho Zenshu p. 751)

The sutra states, "Among this host of these bodhisattvas were four leaders. The first was called Superior Practices (Jogyo), the second named Boundless Practices (Muhengyo), the third was called Pure Practices (Jyogyo) and the fourth was called Firmly Established Practices (Anryugyo). These four bodhisattvas were the foremost leaders and guiding teachers among all the group." (LS p. 214, 3LS p. 239)

Now Nichiren and his disciples who chant Nam Myoho Renge Kyo are Bodhisattvas of the Earth. The benefits of the four Bodhisattvas are as follows: the natural function of fire is to burn things [Jogyo], that of water to purify [Jyogyo], that of wind to blow away dust and dirt [Muhengyo], and that of the earth to nourish plants and trees [Anryugyo]. These are the roles of the four bodhisattvas. Thought the roles of the four bodhisattvas are different, they are all the practice of Nam Myoho Renge Kyo.

The sutra states, "These bodhisattvas have been dwelling in the world of empty space underneath the saha-world." (LS p. 219, 3LS p. 244)

The four Bodhisattvas dwell underneath and T'ien-t'ai's interpretation in the Hokke Mongu speaks of underneath the earth as 'the ultimate depth of life, that being the absolute reality.' Thus, that Bodhisattvas of the Earth dwell underneath means that they dwell in the truth. These bodhisattvas are people who possess the fundamental Law. This 'fundamental Law' is Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. (Gosho Zenshu p 751)

The sutra states, "In this manner these sons study and practice my way and Law. And in order that day and night with constant diligence they may seek the Buddha way." (LS p. 220, 3LS p. 244-45)

When you concentrate the exertions of one hundred million aeons in a single life moment, the three inherent properties of the Buddha will become manifest in your every thought and deed. In a word, Nam Myoho Renge Kyo is continuous and concentrated practice. Nam Myoho Renge Kyo is the practice of shojin [genuine and constant devotion]. (Gosho Zenshu p 790)

The sutra states, "[W]ith constant diligence seeking wisdom." (LS p. 220, 3LS p. 245)

The good fortune and wisdom, inherent in one's own environment, are both incalculable. Nam Myoho Renge Kyo is the source of both good fortune and wisdom. (Gosho Zenshu p. 792)

The sutra states: "If with regard to this sutra, one should harbor doubt, and fail to believe he would fall at once into the evil paths." (LS p. 223, 3LS p. 248)

'Belief' [faith] alone is capable of breaking through fundamental darkness. Belief means accepting and upholding this essential Law. Belief [faith] is the sharp sword with which to subdue fundamental darkness. (Gosho Zenshu p. 751)

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