Family Day 2022 brings together 1,000 Nichiren Shoshu believers in Singapore as one entity to celebrate our collective faith and practice. Our activities during the event will reflect on kinship within our personal families and the temple community at large. Through short lectures by our temple priests, games, and experience sharing, believers will have the opportunity to deepen existing bonds and kindle new connections. Most importantly, believers can also be inspired to renew our commitment to the Gohonzon: generate good causes together, support each other through challenges, and continue to practice steadfastly for the True Happiness of ourselves and others.
The event is shaped by three core values that are vital to practising as a family:
- One Harmonious Family 家和乐
One joyful and harmonious family means that the whole family is united in one mind. The family is a community of common destiny, so to speak, where people believe in each other from the bottom of their hearts and support each other unconditionally, no matter what happens. If the hearts of this community are divided, the family will not function.
Our founder, the True Buddha Nichiren Daishonin teaches that:
“With the spirit of many in body, one in mind, they will achieve everything, whereas, in the case of one in body, many in mind, they will not accomplish anything.” (Gosho, p.1389)
He guides us on how crucial it is to unite minds to achieve various challenges.
The key to One joyful and harmonious family lies in a practice-centred life:
Specifically, the daily practices of morning and evening Gongyo (Sutra recitation) and chanting of Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo together with all family members. Through the benefit of this faith, each individual can manifest as a great personality and build a spirit of many in body, one in mind, and one joyful and harmonious family.
2. Passing Down the Faith to the Next Generation 法统相续
Passing down the faith to the next generation means inheriting the True faith and practice of Nichiren Daishonin from the parents to the children. However, it is not merely passed on to the child due to parental will.
Parents must follow the golden words of: “I, Nichiren, have done nothing else but one thing. That is, to dedicate myself to having all the people of Japan chant the five and seven characters of Myoho-Renge-Kyo. This act of compassion is the same as a mother trying to put milk into the mouth of her infant.” (Gosho, p. 1539)
And pray for the child to grow up well by bestowing the supreme teaching of “Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo” to the child with compassion.
Children must feel the gratitude given by their parents:
“My head is that of my parents as are my legs; my ten fingers are also those of my parents as is my mouth. It is same as the relationship between a seed and its fruit, and one's body and its shadow.” (Gosho, p. 958)
And be determined to practice and repay their debts of gratitude. Only through the efforts of both parties can faith be correctly passed on to the next generation, and that is when the inheritance of the faith would be established.
以慈悲之心将" Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo "至高无上的正法赋予孩子，祈求他们能顺利成长。
3. Appreciation 报恩感谢
The spirit of appreciation is the foundation of One joyful and harmonious family and Passing down the faith to the next generation. In our busy lives, how much can we feel the debts of gratitude to our family and express our appreciation to them? If we forget to appreciate, we will be unhappy. All things become valuable because of gratitude; if we take them for granted, they instantly become meaningless.
Nichiren Daishonin teaches as follows: “Disciples of the Buddha must first realize what the four debts of gratitude are, and then repay them.” (Opening of the Eyes, p.530)
The four debts of gratitude are:
Gratitude owed to one’s parents, gratitude to all living beings, gratitude to one’s sovereign, and gratitude to the Three Treasures (the Buddha, the Law, and the Priesthood). In other words, we need to know that we must live because we owe these four debts of gratitude. When we feel these debts of gratitude, appreciate them deeply, and then determine to repay this gratitude, our character as full-fledged human beings living in society will be formed.
New to Nichiren Shoshu and interested to join in our activities? Have a look at our activities schedule or find out more about the basics of our practice! You can also reach out to us here so we can assist you directly!