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Record of the Orally Transmitted
Teachings of Nichiren Daishonin

- Ongi Kuden -

Chapter 24: Bodhisattva Wonderful Sound [Myo'on Bosatsu]

To work out solutions according to the suffering of others is compassion and is called bodhisattva. Bodhisattva Myo'on is all living beings of the ten worlds. 'Wonderful' means mystic. 'Sound' means the words, speech, sounds and voices uttered by all living beings which are themselves the sounds and voices of Myoho Renge Kyo. Now 'Wonderful sound' means the chanting of Nam Myoho Renge Kyo by Nichiren and his disciples. This [chanting] is the 'Wonderful Sound' in the present age of Latter Day of the Law. The reason that the Daimoku is the mystic sound is because it transforms earthly desires into enlightenment and the sufferings of birth and death into nirvana. To work out solutions according to the suffering of others is compassion and is called bodhisattva. (Gosho Zenshu p. 774)

The sutra states, "At that time, Shakyamuni Buddha emitted a beam of bright light from the knob of flesh [on his head], one of the features of a great man, and emitted a beam of light from the tuft of white hair between his eyebrows illuminating the Buddha worlds in the eastern direction equal in number to the sands of one hundred eighty thousand million nayutas of Ganges." (LS p. 290, 3LS p. 312)

These two marks result from filial conduct and obedience to one's teacher. To uphold the Lotus Sutra is the pinnacle for all filial behavior. The 'white tuft' indicates the carnal desire of the father and the 'knob of flesh,' the carnal desire of the mother. The red and white fluids appear in this sutra as these two marks. The 'knob of flesh' represents the wisdom of true being that accords with conditions and the white tuft, the principle of true being that is unchanging. Now Nichiren and his disciples who chant Nam Myoho Renge Kyo are endowed with these two marks. When we are first born, we are red in color; this corresponds to the knob of flesh. And the white bones that remain after our death correspond to the mark of the white tuft. Our red color at birth indicates the wisdom of true being that accords with conditions, while our white bones after death indicate the principle of true being, which is unchanging. This should be kept secret and not told to others. (Gosho Zenshu p. 774)

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