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2020年 08月 16日

28. Machinations of Gokurakuji Ryoukan.

   Japanese edition

Wife Noriko of Tokimune walked the corridor of the hall, her both hands held to two maids.

She was pregnant.

A pale, seemingly frail young wife of nineteen slowly cowered in front of the twenty-year-old Tokimune and graciously put her hands on the floor.

Noriko was the half-sister of Adachi Yasumori, and there was a considerable age difference between her and the forty-year-old Yasumori. For this reason, after his father's death, Yasumori adopted her.

“My lord, I'm glad you're well."

“Your belly is getting bigger."

Tokimune looks at the abdomen of Noriko with all smiles. Noriko touched the abdomen.

“My wish will be granted before long.”

Now is Noriko blessed indeed as a wife of the regent.

“Stay quiet and rest. That child may become the chieftain of Hojo.”

“I wish to give birth to a boy, as you wish. The people around me are hoping that the child will be born a man, but if this does not come true, it will be painful for me.”

“Don't bother about it. It is best to be born well, whether a man or a woman. Which one will be born? It is the blessing of Heaven to the last. Do not worry. It is important for you to rest your body now."

“I was relieved to hear it. As if a load is taken off my shoulder. My body is inconvenient, and the surrounding people are taking care of various things."

The maids exercised tact and left.

Noriko embraced Tokimune quietly after she checked, there was nobody. She is teary-eyed.

“I always want to meet my lord. Is it my selfishness?"

Tokimune strongly hugged the shoulder of Noriko.

“Hold out a little longer. Just a little more patience. I want to see you, too. I am not free if I do not resolve the grave matters of the country."

Noriko stared at the eyes of the husband.

“Is this about Mongolia, sir?"

“Not only Mongolia. I was able to let this famine deal with somehow, too. It is full of problems one after another."

Tokimune fondles the abdomen of Noriko once again.

“However, I only work hard for this child.”

Noriko buried her face in the breast of Tokimune again. It is the happiest moment.

At that time, Tokimune felt an indication of a man on the other side of the door.

It was Yoritsuna Tairano of the butler.

"My lord, there is a visitor."

"Saemon-no-jo, I am busy now, later."

Tokimune answers while embracing Noriko.

Yorizuna's reply was unusually awkward.

"There is a problem."

“What's wrong? Who came?"

"The widow of Kasai, the widow Sanuki, the widow of Jibu and a lot of widow nuns are coming here."

Noriko tidied herself apart from Tokimune unintentionally.

Tokimune spits out.

"Though the Shogunate is being troubled, what do the mothers want from me?"

The audience hall was already crowded with nuns and wives. They were wearing the black clothes which were the symbol of the widow nun.

It was a sudden visit.

Tokimune met them in a higher seat. Yoritsuna and Yasumori Adachi, Hojo Nobutoki and Shogunate vassals who heard the news of the visit of Kasai widow lined up aside.

Kasai says hello respectfully.

“Our lord. It's been a long time. You are well, so I was relieved. In addition, Noriko is beautiful. I'm glad you seem happy. Because I think my lord has matters to be troublesome all the time, I would like to give only a few remarks. There is much melancholy inside and out these days. I think that Lord Tokimune does not make a mistake, but there is the born timidity to me, I am anxious about you."

Tokimune answers her carefully as if investigating the intention of visiting the mother.

“The mother who is respected. It's been a long time. I am glad that you look healthier. I think that your visit is an inquiry of my wife’s pregnancy, but the worry is useless. Even this regent Tokimune, who is feared by the samurai, will not be able to control whether an heir will be born or not, but a good child will be born. I do not suffer from pestilence and am healthy.”

Kasai had a smile.

“That's good. That makes me happier than anything else. I can live longer ``.

Tokimune began.

“By the way, I am surprised. My mother, Lady Sanuki, Wife Jibu of the deceased Lord Shigetoki are gathering. Is there something serious?”

The widow's Jibu told. Her late husband Shigetoki banished Nichiren to Izu.

“We are going to think only of the road of Buddha since we renounced from the mundane world. The road of Buddha is to become Buddha finally.”

Tokimune has a smile.

“It is admirable. My father was also devoted to Zen. In the end, he relied on the Buddha.”

Kasai, the mother tells him as if making up her mind.

“I came for the sake of the father of the thou today.”

Tokimune is puzzled and tilts his head.

Kasai has begun to talk, glancing upward at Tokimune.

“Even if the road of Buddha is the Nembutsu, or Zen, these are praying for attaining Buddhahood. However, my lord, there is a Buddhist priest who is going to ruin Buddhism in this Kamakura. You may already know him, but his name is Nichiren.”

The hall buzzed. Yoritsuna Tairano grinned. Yasumori Adachi was seized with uneasiness.

"I would like you to seize this Nichiren by the hand of His Highness."

Tokimune hides his surprise and responds.

“Why is that? Priest Nichiren had brought rain the other day in Japan during the drought, his fame is increasing, and I am hearing it that the people of Kamakura are putting trust in him. Do you want to arrest Nichiren?”

The tone of Kasai became gradually stronger.

"Nichiren says, the Nembutsu is the hell of incessant sufferings, Zen is the acts of Heaven's devil, Shingon destroys a country and the religious precepts sect is the false theory of the traitor.”

Lady Lord Jibu, who was the wife of Shigetoki, presses him more.

“Besides, he removes the statues of Amida and Kannon which were transmitted through the ancestors from generation to generation on fire and burns it and abandons it into the river. In addition, he seems to be sheltering offenders in Kamakura. And he collects the arms, including a sword and the bow and arrow. Did you know, lord?”

Tokimune made a defense.

“Is that not a mistake? If they are true, you should first appeal to the Shogunate.”

Widow Kasai presses him.

“Nichiren is a man of great eloquence and often misleads people. Even when we appeal to the court, he uses sophistry to deceive the judge. That is why we appealed directly to my lord because there was no other means. His Highness, please deal with it.”

Tokimune got excited.

“Please wait. The late father banished priest Nichiren, but he regretted it and forgave him. The father did not think the priest Nichiren to be the offender. I only obey it too.”

His mother sheds tears at this time and exposes feelings.

“Nichiren is saying that the Lord Tokiyori, namely father of yours, my husband, had fallen into hell!”

Lady Jibu shed tears without hesitating, too.

"Nichiren said that my husband, the lord Shigetoki, is also in hell."

The atmosphere was frozen hard. The sobs of the nun spread.

Kasai said it last.

 “My lord, I say it as a mother. Neither I nor my lord’s peace if you do not arrest that hateful Buddhist priest. Please be good to me.”

Tokimune crossed his arms and looked at the ceiling quietly.

Even after the nun left, Tokimune has been crossing his arms. There are Yoritsuna, Yasumori, and Nobutoki around.

All are serious.

Tokimune was in thought and muttered.

“The insinuating remarks of my mother and others, outlandish excitement, not an ordinary matter. Were they seduced by somebody?”

Yoritsuna defends nuns.

"The power of the widow nun is great in the Shogunate. Most samurais are tied to their wives’ apron-strings. The example is set by the nun shogun, lord Masako. In addition, widow nuns have many feudal territories. There is the preparation against Mongolia, too. We must have widow nuns help with the financial aspect. We cannot handle the intention of the widow nun roughly in this meaning.”

Yasumori objected.

“However, we cannot arrest Nichiren without evidence if we take according to the items of the trial. The Shogunate is permitting the criticism of other religions unless bewildering the society. 'They save a weapon, they gather criminals, they say that the deceased ruler fell into hell', there is not this evidence until now. Besides... "

Yoritsuna blocked him.

“No, we should arrest Nichiren. Changing from Nembutsu, the title of the Lotus Sutra is swirling in this Kamakura now. In danger. We should no longer let them spread. If...”

Yasumori disturbed him this time.

“My lord, I have a thought. The prayer of Nichiren has a terrible power. He had made a success of the prediction of Mongolia and the prayer of the rain, too. There is no priest who showed such power. The overthrow of Mongolia will also surely bode well if Nichiren is used.”

Yoritsuna has begun to be angry.

“It is stupid! What have you said?”

Yasumori got excited too.

“You're the one! Do you intend to destroy the Shogunate?”

Tokimune decided.

“Even my mother has come. It can't be helped. Let's decide to summon Nichiren one time to the military headquarters.”

Yasumori got discouraged. Tokimune continues.

“We summon priest Nichiren. We'll come to a conclusion then. If we summon and question him, women understand and will become quiet. Yoritsuna, take charge of the summons. But do not take mistakes earnestly. Priest Nichiren is not a criminal. Treat him politely."

Tokimune was optimistic.

Nichiren is not an evil person. If the Shogunate announced it hearing the real intention of Nichiren, Tokimune thought that the uproar would be settled naturally. However, this decision will cause an incident out of control by Yoritsuna.

Yoritsuna bowed to Tokimune respectfully and signaled Nobutoki Hojo, who was beside him with eyes.

 Together with the palanquin of Kasai in the lead, the group of nuns goes ahead through the Wakamiya Thoroughfare.

 She is the mother of the regent. The samurais who were walking lowered their heads, and townsmen prostrated themselves.

 The Buddhist priest of the black robe who attracted attention conspicuously among them was prostrating himself.

 Kasai raised a bamboo blind smilingly and looked down at him.

 The Buddhist priest who bent over looked up respectfully.

 He was the Gokuraku-ji Ryoukan.

Continues to 2

Life of Nichiren. Vol. 1. Contents

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