NEW YEAR’S ADDRESS 新年贺辞

NEW YEAR’S ADDRESS

By sixty -eighth High Priest Nichinyo Shonin

on January 1, 2012

As we welcome the early spring of the New Year, the 760th anniversary of the establishment of true Buddhism, I am pleased that our Honorable Retired High Priest Nikken Shonin has also welcomed this New Year in good health and high spirits.

Last year, we Nichiren Shoshu, experienced great progress toward the achievement of our goals toward the years 2015 and 2021 through unity and harmony between priesthood and lay believers with firm faith in the spirit of “one’s body is insignificant while the Law is supreme” and “willing to give one’s life to propagate the Law.”

In particular, nearly all the Temples in the North East region of Japan overcame the effects of the East Japan Great Earthquake that led to unprecedented disasters, problems of radioactive contamination caused by the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident that occurred following the Earthquake and many other obstacles and difficulties, and then magnificently achieved their shakubuku goals. This certainly deserves high praise from the bottom of our hearts, and the Three Treasures will surely recognize this. This is due to the result that all temples and groups uphold the true meaning of “Rissho Ankoku-Ron” and earnestly exert their selves for Kosen-rufu. There is no other joy than this.

This, “The Year of Advancing toward Kosen-rufu through Shakubuku,” I eagerly anticipate that you will experience great advancement toward the achievement of your goals for the years 2015 and 2021 through your conduct of shakubuku activities, and increasingly progress in each country by assembling all your strength through the literal meaning of this “Year of Advancing toward Kosenrufu
through Shakubuku.”

Therefore, we need to cultivate the Hokkeko group to have a solid foundation in order to endure the rigorous activities for Kosen-rufu.
This is because various obstacles will definitely arise during our Kosen-rufu activities.

In the “Letter to the Brothers”:
If you propagate this teaching, devils will definitely arise. Were it not for these, there would be no way of understanding that this is the true teaching. One passage from the fifth volume reads, “As practice progresses and understanding grows, the three obstacles and four devils arise, vying with one another to interfere…You should never be influenced nor frightened by them. If you follow them, you will be led into the paths of evil. If you are frightened by them, you will be prevented from practicing true Buddhism.” This interpretation not only applies to Nichiren but also is the clear guide for his disciples. Reverently make this teaching your own and transmit it as an axiom of faith for future generations.
(Gosho, page 986)

Absolute conviction in the Dai-Gohonzon, firm faith and practice for one’s self and for others, and in particular the shakubuku of refuting heresy and revealing the truth are the keys to defeating all obstacles and devils and clearing away the erroneous teachings and religions that slander the true law.

In other words, if all Hokkeko groups raise awareness of the achievement of these shakubuku goals and conduct shakubuku with the firm determination to “not begrudge one’s life,” and to work in unity with “different bodies but one mind,” the Hokkeko groups will establish a solid foundation which will never be defeated by any obstacles or devils.

To do so, we must not only cultivate limited persons in the Hokkeko group to conduct shakubuku, we must foster all Hokkeko members to be able to stand up and firmly conduct shakubuku.

Specifically speaking, when you shakubuku one person, you must cultivate this person as a member who can also conduct shakubuku.

In essence, the term “cultivate” (ikusei in Japanese) means to “nurture one to become grand and splendid.” From the view point of Buddhism, “nurture one to become grand and splendid” means to cultivate a capable person who can contribute himself toward the achievement of Kosen-rufu, namely, to become an active member for shakubuku. There is a proverb that states: “If you feed your
children but do not teach them, it is the fault of you, the father; and if you instruct people without strictness, this is the neglect of you, the master.”

This would be an unacceptable situation. After you conduct shakubuku, if you do not cultivate this person as a member who can conduct shakubuku, you will be the subject of contempt for lacking compassion and being irresponsible.

After all, both shakubuku and cultivation are the practice for others. Needless to say that the practice for one’s self means to conduct Gongyo and Shodai, and practice for others is shakubuku and cultivation. In other words, one will have a prejudiced practice if either shakubuku or cultivation is lacking. In this case, the Hokkeko cannot become a solid group, and important goals cannot
be achieved.

In short, after you conduct shakubuku, you should cultivate this person as a member who can conduct shakubuku. This is the key to establishing a solid Hokkeko group.

In this year of “Advancing toward Kosen-rufu through Shakubuku,” I hope that all Hokkeko members will conduct shakubuku and cultivation,
and that all temples and groups will definitely achieve their shakubuku goals. I would like to conclude my New Year’s address by earnestly praying for your further progress to achieve the goals toward the years 2015 and 2021.

第六十八世
御法主日如上人猊下之辞
一月一日二○一二年

立宗七百六十年,新春快乐,相信御隐尊日显上人猊下也心情开朗地迎接新年。

去年,宗门以僧俗一致、异体同心的团结,和身轻法重、死身弘法的强盛信心,而能够向着平成二十七年(二○一五年)、三十三年( 二○ 二一年) 的目标达成,大大前进。

特别是在日本,东北地方的大多数寺院,遭遇到东日本大震灾,以及随之而起的福岛核能事故的辐射线污染问题等未曾有过的灾害,却仍然克服其他许多的障害和困难,成功达成折伏誓愿,对于此事,由衷地感到赞赏,相信佛祖三宝尊也必定欣然嘉许。

这完全是各寺院、团体,拜察『立正安国论』的正意,燃起对广布的一念,奋斗而来的结果,再没有比这更大的喜悦了。

今年的「实行前进之年」,更加结集全国的总体力量,与「实行前进之年」的文字相呼应,展开实行大折伏奋斗,不断前进再前进,以此殷切期望朝向平成二十七年(二○一五年)、三十三年(二○二一年)的誓愿达成,有显著的大跃进。

为此,得忍耐严峻的广布之战,育成坚固的讲中是必要的。因为在广布之战中, 障魔一定会竞起。

『兄弟抄』中教示:
「申述此法门,必有魔出现,魔若不竞起,不可知为正法。第五卷云『行解既勤,三障四魔纷然竞起』。乃至不可随,不可畏。随之将使人向恶道,畏之则妨碍正法之修行」等云云。此释不仅日莲本身,亦为门家之明镜也,谨予传习,以为未来之资粮。」(御书 九八六页)

对大御本尊绝对的确信,和强盛的自行化他的信心,尤其是破邪显正的折伏,正是击退邪义邪宗的谤法,粉碎所有障魔的秘诀。换言之,全体讲中以提高达成誓愿的共同认知、不自惜身命的坚定决意,和异体同心的团结,去实践折伏的话,即能构筑不输给任何障魔的坚固讲中。

因此在讲中,不是只有特定的人去做折伏,而是全体讲中各个奋起,以强力实践折伏般地去做育成。具体来说,就是折伏之后,将所折伏的人,培育成为能够做折伏的讲员。

原来,育成不单只是培育,也有「大加栽培,使之出色」的意思。从佛法的观点来说,「大加栽培,使之出色」,即是对广布达成有助益的人才,也就是培育成为折伏的战士。

有句话说,「子不教父之过,教不严师之惰。」这句话的意思是说,仅只是养育小孩,却什么也不教的话,是为人父者的过失;训导学生时不够严格,是为师者的怠惰。我们不能让这样的状态发生,折伏之后,若没有将其培育成为能够折伏的人,则须承受缺乏慈悲的无责任之耻辱。毕竟,折伏和育成都是化他行。不用说,自行就是勤行和唱题,化他行则是折伏和育成。因此,同为化他行的折伏和育成,缺了任何一方,就成为偏差的信心,无法培育成为有力的讲中,也无法达成重要的目标。重点是,折伏之后,将此人培育成为能够折伏的人,是构筑坚固讲中的最大意义。

今年的「实行前进之年」,正是举全体讲中的力量,致力于折伏和育成,衷心祈愿所有的寺院、团体,务必达成折伏誓愿,向着平成二十七年(二○一五年)、三十三年(二○二一年)的目标达成,大步前进,作为新年之辞。