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Major Writings - Nichiren Daishounin

Letter to Jakunichi-bo

The True Entity of Life
The One Essential Phrase
The Essence of the Juryo Chapter
The True Object of Worship
The Selection of the Time
The Problem to Be Pondered Night and Day
Reply to the Mother of Lord Ueno
The Bodies and Minds of Ordinary Beings
Teaching, Practice, and Proof
On Omens
On Persecutions Befalling the Buddha
The Votary of the Lotus Sutra Will Meet Persecution
Thus I Heard
The Izu Exile
The Origin of the Urabon
The Royal Palace
The Meaning of Faith
The Third Day of the New Year
Reply to the Followers
The Causal Law of Life
The Swords of Good and Evil
The Teaching for the Latter Day
The Unmatched Fortune of the Law
Easy Delivery of a Fortune Child
Letter to Konichi-bo
Letter to Misawa
An Outline of the Zokurui and Other Chapters
Consecrating an Image of Shakyamuni Buddha Made by Shijo Kingo
Curing Karmic Disease
Admonitions Against Slander
Bestowal of the Mandala of the Mystic Law
The Receipt of New Fiefs
The Unity of Husband and Wife
Letter to Ko-no-ama Gozen
Winter Always Turns to Spring
On Filial and Unfilial Conduct
A Father Takes Faith
A Warning against Begrudging One's Fief
The Mongol Envoys
Reply to Tokimitsu
Reply to Myoho Bikuni Gozen
Beneficial Medicine for All Ills
A Sage Perceives the Three Existences of Life
The Proof of the Lotus Sutra
Letter to Jakunichi-bo
Aspiration for the Buddha Land
Reply to Lord Shijo Kingo
The Universal Salty Taste
Good Fortune in This Life
The Wealthy Man Sudatta
Letter to Gijo-bo
New Year's Gosho
Persecution at Tatsunokuchi
Easy Delivery of a Fortune Child
Reply to Lord Matsuno's Wife
The Birth of Tsukimaro
Banishment to Sado
Great Evil and Great Good
Happiness In This World
Letter from Echi
Letter to Endo Saemon-no-jo
Letter to Priest Nichiro in Prison
On Flowers and Seeds
On Itai Doshin
Postscript to the Rissho Ankoku Ron
Reply to a Believer
Reply to Ko Nyudo
Reply to Lady Onichi-nyo
Reply to Lord Matsuno
Rissho Ankoku Ron
The Difficulty of Sustaining Faith
The Offering of a Summer Robe
The Property of Rice
The Wonderful Means of Surmounting Obstacles
Unseen Virtue and Visible Reward
Upholding Faith in the Gohonzon
The Drum at the Gate of Thunder

Letter to Jakunichi-bo

I deeply appreciate your sending a letter to this distant place. It is extremely rare to be born as a human being. Not only are you endowed with human life, but you have had the rare fortune to encounter Buddhism. Moreover, out of the Buddha's many teachings, you have found the daimoku of the Lotus Sutra and become its votary. Truly you have served tens of billions of Buddhas in your past existences!

Nichiren is the supreme votary of the Lotus Sutra in Japan. In this land only he has lived the twenty-line verse of the Kanji chapter. Eight hundred billion myriad bodhisattvas pledged with this verse to propagate the Lotus Sutra but not one of them fulfilled it. The parents who gave life to this extraordinary person, Nichiren, are the most blessed of all people in Japan. It is destiny that they should have been my parents, and I, their child. Since Nichiren propagates the Lotus Sutra as the envoy of Shakyamuni, then his parents must also share this relationship. They are like King Myoshogon and Lady Jotoku who followed their sons, Jozo and Jogen, in the practice of Buddhism. Could the two Buddhas Shakyamuni and Taho have been reborn as Nichiren's parents? Or if not, could his parents have been among the eight hundred billion myriad bodhisattvas or the Four Bodhisattvas led by Jogyo? It is beyond comprehension.

Names are important for all things. That is why the Great Teacher T'ien-t'ai placed "designation" first among the five major principles. Giving myself the name Nichiren signifies that I attained enlightenment by myself. This may sound boastful, but there are specific reasons for what I say. The sutra reads, "Just as the light of the sun and moon illuminates all obscurity, this person will practice among the people and dispel the darkness of all mankind." Consider exactly what this passage reveals. "This person will practice among the people..." means that the first five hundred years of the Latter Day of the Law will witness the advent of Bodhisattva Jogyo, who will illuminate the darkness of human ignorance and earthly desires with the torch of Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. Nichiren's endeavors to have all the Japanese embrace the Lotus Sutra are the work of Bodhisattva Jogyo. His unremitting efforts never slacken, even here on this mountain.

The passage continues, "After my death, you must embrace this sutra. Those who do so shall travel the straight road to Buddhahood." Therefore, those who become Nichiren's disciples and followers should realize the profound karmic relationship they share with him and spread the Lotus Sutra in the same spirit. Being a votary of the Lotus Sutra is a bitter and yet unavoidable destiny.

Fan K'uai, Chang Liang, Taira no Masakado and Fujiwara no Sumitomo never acted cowardly because they cared so deeply about their honor and abhorred disgrace. But disgrace in this life is nothing. What counts is disgrace which appears in the next life. Advance on the Lotus Sutra's path to enlightenment, bearing in mind the time when devils, demons and the guards of hell will strip you of your garments on the bank of the river of three crossings. The Lotus Sutra is the robe which will keep you from disgrace after this life. The Lotus Sutra reads, "...the naked have obtained clothing."

Believe in the Gohonzon with all your heart, for it is the robe to protect you in the next life. No wife would ever leave her husband unclothed, nor could any parents fail to feel compassion for their child shivering in the cold. Shakyamuni Buddha and the Lotus Sutra are like one's wife and parents. You have helped Nichiren and saved him from disgrace in this life; in return, he will protect you from disgrace in the next. Death came to someone yesterday, it may come to us today. Blossoms turn into fruit and brides become mothers-in-law. Chant Nam-myoho-renge-kyo and deepen your faith.

I cannot thank you enough for your frequent letters. Jakunichi-bo, please convey all these teachings in detail to the other disciples.


The sixteenth day of the ninth month



A Comparison of the Lotus Sutra and Other Sutras
A Ship to Cross the Sea of Suffering
Earthly Desires Are Enlightenment
Clear Sake Gosho
Letter to Niike
Letter to Domyo Zemmon
Letter to Akimoto
Letter from Sado
Reply to Nichigon-ama
Roots of Good Fortune
Reply to Jibu-bo
No Safety in the Threefold World - Nichiren Daishounin
Letter to Horen - Nichiren Daishounin
King Rinda - Nichiren Daishounin
Jozo and Jogen - Nichiren Daishounin
Bodhisattva Hachiman - Nichiren Daishounin
On Prayer - Nichiren Daishounin
The Opening of the Eyes Part I
The Opening of the Eyes Part II
Conversation between a Sage and an Unenlightened Man
Conversation between a Sage and an Unenlightened Man Part II
Establishment of the Legitimate Teaching for the Protection of the Country
How Those Initially Aspiring to the Way Can Attain Buddhahood Through the Lotus Sutra
The Learned Doctor Shan-wu-wei
The Entity of the Mystic Law
The Pure and Far-reaching Voice
Reply to Takahashi Nyudo
The Teaching, Capacity, Time, and Country
The Doctrine of Attaining Buddhahood in One's Present Form
Encouragement to a Sick Person
The Essence of the Yakuo Chapter
The Daimoku of the Lotus Sutra
The Supreme Leader of the World
The Treasure of a Filial Child
The Supremacy of the Law
Reply to Nii-ama
The Workings of Bonten and Taishaku
The Story of Ohashi no Taro
The Teaching in Accordance with the Buddha's Own Mind
The Treatment of Illness and the Points of Difference between Mahayana and Hinayana and Provisional
Repaying Debts of Gratitude
On Practicing the Buddha's Teachings
On the Urabon
Letter to the Priests of Seicho-ji
Letter to Nichimyo Shonin
Letter to Shomitsu-bo
Questions and Answers on Embracing the Lotus Sutra
Reply to Sairen-bo
Rationale for Submitting the Rissho Ankoku Ron
Persecution by Sword and Staff
Rebuking Slander of the Law and Eradicating Sins
Recitation of the Hoben and Juryo Chapters
Reply to Lord Hakiri Saburo
Reply to Yasaburo
Letter to Ichinosawa Nyudo
Letter to Myomitsu Shonin
Reply to Hoshina Goro Taro
Wu-lung and I-lung
White Horses and White Swans
The Sutra of True Requital
The Kalpa of Decrease
The Farther the Source, the Longer the Stream
The Third Doctrine
The One-eyed Turtle and the Floating Sandalwood Log
Letter to Nakaoki Nyudo
General Stone Tiger
The Heritage of the Ultimate Law of Life
Lessening the Karmic Retribution
Letter to the Brothers
Hell is the Land of Tranquil Delight
On Prolonging Life
On the Buddha's Behavior
On the Buddha's Prophecy
On the Treasure Tower
Propagation by the Wise
The Embankments of Faith
The Dragon Gate
Strategy of the Lotus Sutra
Reply to Kyo-o
The Person and the Law
The One Essential Phrase
The Gift of Rice
The Real Aspect of the Gohonzon
Letter of Petition from Yorimoto
Introduction and Preface to the Ongi Kuden: Namu Myoho Renge Kyo [Devotion to the Lotus Sutra]
Muryogi Sutra [Sutra of Innumerable Meanings]
Chapter 3: Simile and Parable [Hiyu]
Chapter 4: Faith and Understanding [Shinge]
Chapter 6: Prediction [Juki]
Chapter 7: Phantom City [Kejoyu]
Chapter 8: Prophecy of Enlightenment for Five Hundred Disciples [Gohyaku Deshi Juki]