Myohorengekyo Jofukyobosatuhon Dai niju(20)                THE NEVER-DESPISING BODHISATTVA



"I respect you deeply. I do not despise you. Why is it ? It is because you will be able to practise the way of Bodhisattvas and to become Buddhas" 



It has been explained in Chapters 17, 18 and 19 that if you practice by believing in the eternal Buddha revealed in Chapter 16, you will have such merit, but then the Lotus Sutra is actually It is this Never-despising Bodhisattva that explains what it means to practice the Buddhist priests, centered on the Bodhisattva named Never-despising.


Nichiren Saint takes this Chapter of The Never-despising Bodhisattva very carefully. The following is written in a letter addressed to Mr. Kingo Shijo called "The Emperor Sushun's Book".


 The essence of Sakyamuni's life is the Lotus Sutra, and the essence of the practice of the Lotus Sutra was a Chapter 20 of The Never-despising Bodhisattva. What is it that the Never-despising Bodhisattva respects people? The true spirit of Buddha's career can be seen in the behavior of people. 



The main point of the chapter 20

Once upon a time, there was a Bodhisattva Bhikkhu called The Never-despising Bodhisattva. The bodhisattva did not read his scriptures and made it his own practice to worship deeply. This act caused many misunderstandings for people and gave rise to taunts from ignorant people. Nevertheless, this bodhisattva endured and worshiped. Thus, when the Never-despising Bodhisattva was about to end his life, he heard the teachings of the Lotus Sutra, which had previously been preached by the Buddha, and many people with the Lotus Sutra for a long time after the increase in life. Was indoctrinated. 


This Never-despising  Bodhisattva was the predecessor of Sakyamuni-Buddha, and those who cursed him suffered from hell for a long time. After finishing this sin, he entered the Buddha's way under the guidance of the Never-despising   Bodhisattva. That is the 500 Bodhisattvas who are here now. In other words, it can be said that this chapter tried to show that the teaching is alive while admonishing oneself from the standpoint of exploring the teaching until the last time. In other words, it can be said that this chapter is not a method of preaching that the teaching of the Lotus Sutra is to purify the mind and body, but an attempt to show it from the standpoint of practice that one can meet the Lotus Sutra by admonishing oneself.

Nichiren Shu Ishikawa Dojo statement 



The Powerful-Voice-King Buddha

There used to be a Buddha called Powerful-Voice-King. The kalpa when the Buddha was there was named "Free-From-Decay", and the world was called "Great-Achievement". The Powerful-Voice-King Buddha preached the teachings for the gods, men, and Asuras. For Sravakas, he preached the teachings of the Four Truths so that he could escape the suffering of life, illness and death. He preached the teachings of the Twelve causes to those seeking Pratyebuddhahood, and the teachings of the six paramitas to those seeking Bodhisattva. 


The life of this Buddha is very long, and after all the sentient beings have been rescued and entered into Nirvana, the kalpa when the correct teaching of the "SHOBO" is given has passed, and the teaching of the"ZOHOU" is only in the form. Around the end of the day, Buddha appeared again in this country. Its name is Powerful-Voice-King Buddha, and in this way the Buddha with the same name appeared 20000 billion times.


Worship training

When the first Powerful-Voice-King Buddha was disappeared and the era of the "SHOBO"  passed and the era of the "ZOHOU" came, the arrogant Bhiksus became popular. Bhiksus are the people who swear that they know everything. At that time, a bodhisattva appeared. Whenever this bodhisattva saw a person, he worshiped with his hands together and said, 



"I respect you deeply. I do not despise you. Why is it ? It is because you will be able to practise the way of Bodhisattvas and to become Buddhas" 


I respect you and never take it lightly. Because you practice Bodhisattva and you will surely become a Buddha. He said that he worshiped exclusively without reading the scriptures. Some people were angry that there was no reason to be worshiped by strangers, and they struck with a cane or threw stones, but he avoided them far and worshiped repeatedly. The Bhiksus, who ridiculed this and were arrogant, called this bodhisattva "Never-Despising"



Highly arrogant and Not look down on people

At the other end of the "ARROGANT" is the "NOT LOOK DOWN" heart. If the arrogance is the mind that looks down on people, the "NOT LOOK DOWN" mind is the mind of oneself and others. The small self sticks to himself, and the large self abandons himself and tries to raise others. The NEVER-DISPISING BODHISATTVA knew that the essence of sentient beings was Buddha-nature (the life of the eternal Buddha).


See the Buddha

It is said that The Never-despising Bodhisattva saw Buddha-nature for all people because "Buddha-nature" was explained in the  Nirvana Sutra, but the abstract expression of seeing Buddha-nature is still insufficient. To put it more positively, The Never-despising Bodhisattva was clearly looking at the "Buddha itself." 


Nichiren Saint is written in "Kanjinhonzonsho" that "The Never-Despising Bodhisattva sees the Buddha in the person who finds it." And since worship means that Buddha-nature worships Buddha-nature, it can be said that both sides are the phase in which the Buddha appears as it is, that is, the Buddha-nature. It can be said that the world that is received with such a positive belief is the world of the theme of NAMU MYO HOU REN GE KYO. 



Furthermore, Nichiren Saint is said in the "KENBUTU-MIRAIKI" in this way. "The twenty-four characters, these five characters, and their words have the same meaning. The end of ZOHOU and the beginning of MAPPOU. The Never-despising Bodhisattva is the MAN OF FIRST JOY. Nichiren is an ORDINARY MAN ”

The twenty-four characters here are the words of The Never-despising Bodhisattva. It is a word of "GA-JIN-KYO-NYO-TOU-FU-KAN-KYO-MAN-SHO-I-SHA-GA-NYO-TOU-KAI-GYO-BO-SATU-DO-TOU-TOKU-SA-BUTU", and it goes without saying that it is the five characters of "MYO-HOU-REN-GE-KYO". 



Forward edge and Reverse edge

The Buddha has been talking to the Great-Power-Obtainer Bodhisattva about the cause of the Never-Despising-Bodhisattva, but the Buddha is finally witnessing the seeds here. At that time, the Never-Dispising-Bodhisattva was not actually another person, but the current self (Sakyamuni-Buddha), that is, the Nver-Dispising-Bodhisattva long ago. "I have been taught by many Buddhas such as the Buddha of the Powerful-Voice-King, the Buddha of the Sun-Moon-Light, and the Buddha of Cloud-Libetty-Light-King, and I have followed, read, and preached the teachings for the people. I was able to quickly gain enlightenment. " 



In addition, Buddha testifies to the Great-Power-Obtainer Bodhisattva. Who was the one who persecuted the Never-Despising Bodhisattva in the past? It is actually a large number of Bodhisattvas, Bhiksus and believers who are here now. In the olden days, these people used to persecute without listening to what the Bodhisattva said, but now they have practiced the teachings of Buddha well and have never been disappointed. It was revealed that there was. This is the reverse edge. The persecution against the Buddhist law shows that he became deeply involved in learning Buddhist teachings. 


There are forward and reverse on the edges. When the Buddha's teachings are preached, it means that the forward one is willing to listen to the Buddha's teachings and gradually implements the teachings. Opposite ties are people who come together to blame and persecute the teachings of the Buddha when they are preached. These people were persecuted at first, but later they began to practice the teachings of Buddha gracefully, so they are called reverse edge. 



The life of Nichiren Saint was in most reverse edge than forward edge. Without giving in to it, the great saint likened himself to the Never-Despising Bodhisattva and preached the true teachings. The harder Nichiren Saint preaches the teachings of the Lotus Sutra, the stronger the rebellion, and the more rebellious, criticized, and persecuted his opponent will be. However, in the next world, and in the infinite afterlife, they will become relatives who will listen to, obey, and believe in the teachings of the Buddha. This conviction supported the life of the great saint.






"Lotus Sutra Lecture" Lecture by  Tanaka Nitijun Saint


"Reading the Hokekyo" by Professor Shigeo Kamada