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2019年 09月 16日 ( 6 )


2019年 09月 16日

大聖人が発迹顕本なされてた「竜口法難」の契機となった書【行敏御返事】

【行敏御返事】
■出筆時期:文永八年(1271年)七月十三日 五十歳御作
■出筆場所:鎌倉 松葉ケ谷の館にて。
■出筆の経緯:本書を記した直前の七月四日、極楽寺良観は大聖人より「七日のうちに雨を降らせたら余は良観殿の弟子となる、もし雨ふらずば法華経に帰伏して頂く」との降雨の祈祷対決に臨み、十六日間も祈祷したが失敗する。※参照小説日蓮(上)25 極楽寺良観との対決
そしてその直後の7月8日、極楽寺良観の意を受けたと思われる浄土僧の行敏から大聖人に法論の果たし状が届く。
大聖人はそれに対し「私の問答は事行き難く候か、然れば上奏を経られ仰せ下さるるの趣に随つて是非を糾明せらる可く候か」と返書を送り、私人同士の論争では言い争いになり決着がつかないので、衆人監視の公場で是非を決すべきであろう、と逆に提案されておられます。
さらに二ヶ月後の九月十二日、祈祷対決に破れたことで大聖人への敵愾心に取り憑かれた極楽寺良観は、鎌倉幕府の最高実力者・平頼綱と結託、大聖人を評定所に召出し、「竜口法難」に至らしめます。
その意味で本抄は、大聖人が竜口の刑場で発迹顕本なされる契機となった貴重な書と言えます。
■ご真筆:静岡県湖西市 本興寺所蔵。
f0301354_22223548.jpg

[真筆本文:世間令堕悪道法 是二~御不審事私問答難(下記太字箇所)]

[行敏御返事 本文]

[行敏初度の難状

未だ見参(けんざん)に入らずと雖も事の次(ついで)を以て申し承るは常の習に候か、抑(そもそも)風聞の如くんば所立の義尤も以て不審なり、法華の前に説ける一切の諸経は皆是妄語にして出離の法に非ずと是一、大小の戒律は世間を誑惑(おうわく)して悪道に堕せしむるの法と是二、念仏は無間地獄の業為(たり)と是三、禅宗は天魔の説・若し依つて行ずる者は悪見を増長すと是四、事若し実ならば仏法の怨敵なり、仍(よっ)て対面を遂げて悪見を破らんと欲す、将(はた)又其の義無くんば争でか悪名を痛ませられざらんや、是非に付き委く示し賜わる可きなり、恐恐謹言。
七月八日 僧行敏 花押
日蓮阿闍梨御房


[大聖人御返事]

条条御不審の事・私の問答は事行き難く候か、然れば上奏を経られ仰せ下さるるの趣に随つて是非を糾明(きゅうめい)せらる可く候か、此の如く仰せを蒙り候条尤も庶幾(しょき)する所に候、恐恐謹言。

七月十三日               日 蓮 花押
行敏御房御返事

by johsei1129 | 2019-09-16 22:31 | 弟子・信徒その他への消息 | Trackback | Comments(0)
2019年 09月 16日

12. Retiring to Mt. Minobu and letting Buddha’s Law hold out for a long time.

In October of that year, like he foretold, Mongolia came in to attack. Dazaifu was defeated including Iki Tsushima, and the Japan side became the state that looked like defeat. The Mongolia forces went away, but pessimistic information that Japan would be destroyed by the next attack spread.

After secluded life in the mountain of Minobu, Nichiren was not out of the mountain even one step. But he left the writings and erected the Gohonzon and educated disciples and wrote letters to believers incessantly. He poured his best so that the correct Law of the Buddha is transmitted to the far future.

Shijo Kingo of the believer of Kamakura was the strong believer who shared a persecution of Tatsunokuchi, but he was forced conversion of faiths on by a lord. Nichiren continues to send letters of encouragement to Kamakura far away from the thatched hut of Minobu mountain.

"The Law of Buddha is alias common sense. A common sense will win against your lord. No matter how dearly you may love your wife and wish never to part from her, when you die, it will become to no avail. No matter how dearly you may cherish your estate, when you die, it will become someone else's property. You have been prosperous enough until now. Must not cling to this. As I have said before, be millions of times more careful than ever!”. ‘The Hero of the World’.

Also, Ikegami brother who was born in the house of Minister of Construction fell into predicament that Nembutsu is forced by their father. Nichiren encouraged to withstand and said "Grit your teeth!".

“If, by one opportunity out of a hundred or a thousand, you should decide to follow my teachings, then confront your father and declare: ‘Since you are my father, I should by rights obey you, but because you have become an enemy of the Lotus Sutra, I would be unfilial if I obey you. Therefore, I have resolved to break with you and follow my elder brother. Even if you disown him, be aware that my thought is same as my older brother!’. You should not have even the slightest fear in your mind. Though a person had been believing in the Lotus Sutra from the far-off past world, the cause that he could not attain Buddhahood is this. Changes certainly occur in the ebb and flow of the sea, the rising and setting of the moon, and the time in which summer, autumn, winter, and spring give way to each other. When a common human being becomes Buddha, it is the same. When the hindrances being called the three obstacles and four devils will appear, the wise rejoices, the foolish person retreats”.The Three Obstacles and Four Devils’.


Continued


Life of Nichiren. Compact edition.



by johsei1129 | 2019-09-16 21:59 | LIFE OF NICHIREN | Trackback | Comments(0)
2019年 09月 16日

10. The victory of the Tsukahara dispute, and the coming true of prediction of revolt.

The next year in January, 1272, Nichiren had won in dispute with other sect at Tsukahara of Sado. 'Debate in Tsukahara'.

Nichiren cut all religions wonderfully and abandoned them. He spells the situation of this day in "various kinds of behavior" later.

“They proceeded to cite the doctrines of Great Concentration and Insight and the Shingon and the Nembutsu. I responded each one and let them consent. Then I asked them a few questions one after another, but they could not answer at all. They were inferior to Kamakura's Shingon, Zen, Nembutsu, and Tendai priests, so you would easily be able to imagine how the debate went. As if a sharp sword cuts a melon or like a gale bends the grass. They not only were poor in the Buddha's Law but violated a slip of the tongue. Or they confused sutras with treatises and confused commentaries with treatises. I preached that Shan-tao of Nembutsu had fallen out of the willow tree and died. Also, I taught about the Great Teacher Kobo's three-pronged-pounder and of how he transformed himself into the Tathagata Dainichi. As I denounced their falsity and madness one by one, some of the priests swore and some were struck dumb, while others turned pale, in addition there were people who admitted the mistake of Nembutsu. Some threw away their robes and beads on the spot and pledged never to chant the Nembutsu again”.

In addition, at that time, Nichiren had predicted to Honma Shigetsura of the agent of feudal lord of Sado, “The civil war will soon occur in Japan". A battle (February disturbance) happened among the Hojo clan in Kamakura one month later and gave the Shogunate a shock.

Besides, religious exaltation of Nichiren in the land of adversity is written down in the letter to Sairenbo of the disciple five months after he was arranged to a house of a funeral service.

However, the Lotus Sutra says, ‘After I have passed away, one will accept this sutra and hold. The Buddhahood of such a person will be decided and it is free from doubt'. It says again, ‘I have attained the crowning Buddhahood immediately’.(Omission). If we continue to think in this way, though we are in banishment, we feel that our mind and body are joyful together. We consider the important doctrines day and night, and we savor the principle of nature that attains Buddhahood for every moment. And because we spend the time like this, though months and years go by, it does not seem long at all, and the hours that have elapsed do not seem even many. It is similar to the case described in the sutra when the two Buddhas of Shakyamuni and Taho, sitting down side by side in the treasure tower, nodded over the wonderful principles of the Lotus Sutra, and although fifty small kalpas had elapsed, because of the supernatural powers of the Buddha, the audience who gathered seemed like no more than half a day”.

Wealth and the power have no value for Nichiren. It is hard to exchange a delight welling from life. There was not such enriched every day so far.


Continued


Life of Nichiren. Compact edition.



by johsei1129 | 2019-09-16 18:20 | LIFE OF NICHIREN | Trackback | Comments(0)
2019年 09月 16日

8. Difficult situation in solitaryisland Sado.

The hardship of both Nichiren and disciples continues.

“In a northern country the wind was strong particularly and the snow was deep. The clothing was thin, the food was scarce. So, I well understood how the mandarin orange which is uprooted and transplanted to a different locale turns into a trifoliate orange naturally. My dwelling was a dilapidated house for a funeral service in a field thick with pampas grass where corpses were buried. Rain had leaked in, and the walls did not keep out the wind. Day and night the only sound reaching my ears was the wind being heard on my pillow; at dawn and sunset the sight that met my eyes was the snow that buried even the roads of various place. I felt as though I had passed through the hungry road and fallen into the cold hells. I experienced the same thing as Su Wu who was detained for nineteen years in the land of the northern barbarians and ate snow to keep himself alive, or Li Ling who had dwelled six years in a cave and clothed a coat of straws”.

The disciples and believers scattered after the persecution of Tatsunokuchi, the Nichiren's sect of Kamakura was destructed almost. The people who abandoned the Lotus Sutra appeared one after another because they were afraid of oppression of the Shogunate. Nichiren writes, "999 of 1000 people had fallen down at the time of persecution" at "A reply to Lady Ni'iama". They were robbed of land, a job was solved, and were kicked out from even their houses. In addition, it was more serious that an opinion divided as obey or not obey Nichiren among the people who barely kept the Lotus Sutra. The person who revolted against Nichiren appeared. They showed it to Nichiren as having had a deep respect for him, but they left him when Nichiren fell into hardship as having returned a palm of the hand.

However, Nichiren concentrated all nerve on writing.

He was banished and confined, but this is an opportunity of the perfect writings in a reverse meaning. When he was in Kamakura, he spent his time to advise the government by 'the treatise of establishing the correct Law for the peace and safety of the nation' and devoted an effort for teaching the disciples and believers. He left the writing that he wrote down the superiority and inferiority of the Lotus Sutra and Nembutsu, Shingon, the Zen and the other religions, but he has been keeping secret the teachings that he himself acquired. Therefore, he must make use of these adverse circumstances greatly.

The persecution of Tatsunokuchi brought about an extremely serious turning point for a life of Nichiren. Nichiren understood a certain mission that he must write down the orthodox of the Law of Buddha clearly. He must leave this for disciples and believers who follow him in the future. The design sprang out one after another, and his writing brush had no time to feel relaxed at all. Time to reveal the secret that he has been holding for many years from the moment of Tatsunokuchi came.

“Besides, you should regard it that my doctrines before the banishment to the country of Sado are only equal to the teachings of Buddha having preached before the Lotus Sutra. I had been thinking that, if the ruler of this country desired to govern well, he would summon the priests of the Shingon or others for an open debate with me, and that on that occasion I would reveal a doctrine of truly supreme importance. If I tell it to my disciples beforehand, they might inadvertently disclose it to the priests of the Shingon or others. The Shingon or other blame me about this difference of doctrine and might avoid the debate. This is why I did not teach all of you it as well. However, on the night of the twelfth day of September in the eighth year of Bun'ei (1271), I was about to be beheaded at Tatsunokuchi. From this time, I felt pity for my followers because I had not yet revealed these true teachings to anybody. I did not say the truth to all of you conforming, then I secretly conveyed this doctrine to my disciples from the country of Sado. After Buddha had passed away, great scholars and teachers such as Mahakashyapa, Ananda, Nagarjuna, Vasubandhu, Tien-tai, Miaolo, Dengyou, and Gishin knew this doctrine, but kept it in their minds covertly and did not express it in words. The reason was that the Buddha had forbidden them to spread it, stating, ‘After my passing, this supreme Law should not be revealed until the latter day of the Law arrives’. Though I do not be an envoy sent by the Buddha, my birth in this world coincides with the era of the latter day. Moreover, quite unexpectedly, I realized this doctrine and I am preaching by and large this beginning until a saint will appear. If this doctrine will appear, all the teachings advocated by the scholars and teachers during the former and the middle day of the Law would become like stars after sunrise, or a coarse workmanship after a skilled craftsman. In this time, the efficacy of the Buddha statues, the priests and temples built in the Former or the middle days will all extinguish and only this grand Law will spread throughout the entire world. Because you have an association with this doctrine, you have to be assured”.

Nichiren arrived at Sado and started writing of own longest book "the opening the eyes" of 35638 characters immediately and finished writing it in only two months. That was no mean spirit as if he left the will of deceased person for disciples.

“A person by the name of Nichiren was beheaded [as a common mortal] between the hours of the rat and ox (11:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m.) on the twelfth day of September of last year. It is his soul that has come to this island of Sado and, in February of the following year, snowbound, is writing this to send to his close disciples. They might be terrified, though this is nothing to fear. Those who have no faiths will be horrified after reading this writing. This is a mirror reflecting the future and the present of Japan, which is held by Shakyamuni Buddha, Taho Buddha, and the ten directions' Buddha. Thus, this should be seen as the keepsake of deceased too”.


Continued


Life of Nichiren. Compact edition.



by johsei1129 | 2019-09-16 18:06 | LIFE OF NICHIREN | Trackback | Comments(0)
2019年 09月 16日

11. The amnesty to Sado banishment and the third warning to the government.

However, Ryoukan of Gokuraku-ji Temple persistently pursued Nichiren. He appealed to Nobutoki Hojo, a leading figure of the bakufu, to suppress Nichiren again. Though Nichiren was in a difficult situation again, unexpectedly he received his pardon of exile.

“When the former governor of Musashi heard this, he decided there was no need to report it to the regent. Instead he sent private orders that any followers of Nichiren in the province of Sado should be driven out of the province or imprisoned. He sent official orders. He did so three times. When I will attempt to describe what happened during this period, you can probably imagine. Some people were thrown into prison because they were said to have walked past my hut, others were exiled because they were reported to have given me donations, or their wives and children were taken into custody. The former governor of Musashi then reported this to the regent. But quite contrary to his expectations, the regent issued a letter of pardon on the fourteenth day of February in eleventh year of Bun'ei (1274), which reached Sado on the eighth day of March”.

In February 1273, regent Tokimune Hojo pardoned Nichiren at last. Tokimune made the plan to borrow power of Nichiren, and to raise the fate of the country against the attack of the Mongolia empire. The doctrine of Nichiren who was prohibited was recognized officially by this pardon virtually.

“As the water is cloudy but becomes transparent sometimes and though the clouds hide the moon, the sky becomes clear sometimes. This is a natural truth. Because the fact that there was no fault had already appeared and it was not false that I said, though the clan and feudal lords said that they should not forgive me, I was finally forgiven at the discretion of only lord Sagami and returned to Kamakura in triumph”. ‘Letter to Nakaoki Nyudo’.

Nichiren returns to Kamakura and, in that April, meets Yoritsuna Tairano who received the intention of Tokimune Hojo. And Nichiren answered a question of Yoritsuna. "It will certainly come in this year". In other words, Nichiren predicted that Mongolia would attack by the end of this year, and he preached it that shogunate must not let the various sects including Shingon pray. (The third of the Advising the Government to Convert the Whole Nation to the Right Religion).

“The third time was the eighth day of April of last year (the eleventh year of the Bun'ei era). I said to Saemonnojo: ‘Since I was born in the land ruled by the king, I may appear to obey him, but he cannot force my mind to obey him. There is no doubt that Nembutsu leads to the hell of incessant suffering and Zen is the acts of heavens' devils. And the Shingon in particular is a great misfortune for this nation. The Kamakura Shogunate should not order the Shingon priests to pray for victory over the Mongols. If the Shingon priests pray for agrave matter, this country will face ruin more quickly.’ Yoritsuna then asked, ‘When do you think the Mongols will attack?’. I replied, ‘The sutras do not indicate that timing. But the symptoms show that heavens are extremely angry. It would appear that the attack is imminent. It will certainly occur before this year has ended’”.

But the Shogunate was not able to exclude existing sects. Nichiren pushed away the Shogunate and went to the seclusion in Mount Minobu of Kai country.

“Although I, Nichiren, do not think that I have done particularly wrong, the people of this country are being deceived by the Nembutsu priests, or by the Zen, religious precepts, or Shingon. They act outwardly as though they revere the Lotus Sutra, but in their minds, they do not believe in it. Thus, when I, Nichiren, assert the supremacy of the Lotus Sutra, they all resent me, just like the people in the latter day of the Law of the Buddha of Dignified Sound King detested the Bodhisattva Never Disparaging. From the ruler to the common people, they even hate to watch me, let alone hear my name. Therefore, although I was innocent of any wrong doing, because once I was exiled, I could not possibly be permitted. In addition, I had denounced the Nembutsu which the people of Japan respect more deeply than their own parents and more highly than the sun and moon, and I said it is the cause that leads to the hell of incessant suffering. I attacked them saying that the Zen sect is the acts of the devil and the Shingon is an evil doctrine that will ruin the nation, and I insisted that the Shogunate burn down the temples of the Nembutsu, Zen, and religious precepts priests and should behead the Nembutsu priests and the others. Moreover, I picked Hojo Tokiyori and Shigetoki of the two deceased lay priest and expressed they had fallen into the Avichi hell. I am such a sinful human being. Because I had voiced such appeals to all people of the high rank and bottom, whether or not I had spoken it in error, I can never again appear to this world. Even worse, I stated such teachings every morning and evening and debated it day and night. Also, I informed soundly Heino-Saemon and several hundred shogunate officers that, no matter what punishment I might incur, I would not stop stating these matters. Therefore, even if a grand stone at the bottom of the sea that requires a thousand men to move it surface by itself, or even if rain falling from the sky do not reach to the ground, I, Nichiren, will never return to Kamakura”.

He was according to this maxim on the surface “If you remonstrate about a lord three times and were not used, you must live in the forest.” The real intention was to train disciples, and to achieve the purpose of his life.


Continued


Life of Nichiren. Compact edition.



by johsei1129 | 2019-09-16 16:48 | LIFE OF NICHIREN | Trackback | Comments(0)
2019年 09月 16日

2. Declaring the Establishment of True Buddhism and the Four Maxims.

Rencho returned to Awa of the hometown on April 28 of 1253 and declared the establishment of the true Buddhism. And he changed own name to Nichiren. The place was the Buddha statue hall in the Seichoji temple which Rencho had prayed for making himself to the wisest person in Japan.

"Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo."

Nichiren declared that the people of the whole world (Jambudvipa) could open the gate of attaining Buddhahood by chanting this subject.

 At the same time, he criticised the four sects that prevent the road to Buddhahood of people. Nembutsu sect create negative karma that cause the people to lead into the hell of incessant suffering; Zen gives rise to devil's functions; Shingon is evil teachings that destroys the nation; and Ritsu sect is the bandit in the country. The maxims of four mean this. The maxims of this four, it was the sharp sword against worldly desire for cutting off the fundamental darkness of all creatures. 

However, Kagenobu Tojo, land steward of Awa, heard this incident, was trying to arrest Nichiren immediately.

Kagenobu was a strong believer of Nembutsu, he was trying to control the Seichji Temple. A persecution befell Nichiren immediately like as Shakyamuni Buddha preached in the Lotus Sutra "A difficulty befalls you if you spread the great clear Law in the latter day of the Law".

Nichiren avoided this difficulty and began propagation in Kamakura of the capital of the politics. Nichiren, to spread the subject of Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, began to criticize the other sect hard. Nichiren had continued this activity for 18 years. Although he criticized the other sect, he increased notoriety along with the fame. Also, Nichiren taught that his believers should spread the Law according to their ability. As a result, believers to Nichiren were gradually increasing to relatives of the disciples, samurai's colleagues, and monk of the other denomination.

Nobody could beat Nichiren by the debate of the doctrine.

“When persons in past times criticized Honen's teachings, they did not at the same time criticize those of his predecessors Shantao and Taocho, nor did they try to distinguish between provisional sutras and those that are true, as a result the Nembutsu believers only became more self-confident than ever. But now I,Nichiren, have Shantao and Honen fallen into the hell of incessant suffering, and have driven home my criticisms by comparing the three Pure Land sutras with the Lotus Sutra. It is like comparing the sun and moon with a firefly or comparing the water of a small stream with the great ocean.

Moreover, I have demonstrated that the Nembutsu is a mere childish doctrine that the Buddha expounded as an expedient for a time only. To desire such a doctrine to leave from the sufferings of birth and death is like building a ship of stone and hoping to cross the vast sea with it, or like loading a mountain on one's back and attempting to go over a steep slope. When I criticize them in this way, none of the Nembutsu believers has been able to refute me”.On refuting Ryoukan and Others’


Continued


Life of Nichiren. Compact edition.



by johsei1129 | 2019-09-16 10:56 | LIFE OF NICHIREN | Trackback | Comments(0)