Day by Day – February 12th 2015:

February 12

True friendship does not change over time, the more it will be tested, the more it strengthens and becomes deeper. A friendship that is influenced by the events cannot be said to be true.

Daisaku Ikeda.

Therefore, the best way to attain Buddhahood is to encounter a good friend. How far can our wisdom take us? If we have even enough wisdom to distinguish hot from cold, we should seek out a good friend.

(Three Tripitaka Masters Pray for Rain. WND pg 598)

http://www.nichirenlibrary.org/en/wnd-1/Content/68#p598

Background

This letter was written at Minobu in the first year of Kenji (1275) and sent to the lay priest Nishiyama, who lived in Nishiyama Village in Fuji District of Suruga Province. Nishiyama appears to have been the steward of that village and a sincere believer who often visited the Daishonin at Minobu, bringing offerings and provisions.

In the opening of this letter, Nichiren Daishonin explains the importance of “good friends” who assist or encourage one in one’s Buddhist practice. Stating that good friends are rare and “evil companions”—those who hinder one’s quest for enlightenment—are too numerous to count, he goes on to point out the distortions of the True Word school, to which Nishiyama had previously belonged. He then declares that, while documentary and doctrinal evidence is important in considering the efficacy of a Buddhist teaching, far more important is “the proof of actual fact,” that is, the power of a religion to positively affect the human condition.

The “three Tripitaka masters” in this letter’s title are Shan-wu-wei, Chin-kang-chih, and Pu-k’ung, three Indian monks who introduced the esoteric teachings to China in the eighth century that later in Japan became known as the True Word school. The Daishonin relates instances in which each of these three men prayed for rain at the request of the throne, in each case appearing to have produced destructive gales. He then cites instances in which prayers based on the Lotus Sutra, such as those offered by T’ien-t’ai in China and Dengyō in Japan, brought down gentle, life-giving rain. Publicly sponsored prayer rituals to bring about rain were not uncommon in ancient China and Japan, where rice crops depended on abundant precipitation and a drought could mean widespread famine.

After citing instances in both China and Japan in which True Word rituals were known to have brought disaster, the Daishonin further criticizes the errors and deceptions of Kōbō, the founder of Japan’s True Word school, and warns against relying on the prayers of this school for the nation’s safety. Japan at this time was facing an impending attack by the Mongol forces. After one attempted invasion that had been foiled by adverse weather, the Mongol emperor had again sent envoys demanding Japan’s allegiance; anxiety gripped the nation as the people prepared to defend themselves against overwhelming odds.

The Daishonin himself, in his admonitory treatise On Establishing the Correct Teaching for the Peace of the Land, had predicted this specter of foreign invasion. Quoting various sutras, he declares that Japan finds itself in this predicament because of the people’s attachment to mistaken forms of Buddhism and their rejection and slander of the Lotus Sutra.

To My Friends ~ February 12th 2015:

“Let’s do our best to help our juniors develop into capable individuals who surpass us in ability. A leader’s strong resolve determines the future. Let’s begin with such deep prayer!” – Daisaku Ikeda

Daily guidance on February 12 if thwarted by circumstances, even though blame no help to their own growth.

Forget the lofty mission and purposes, lost their Rails, will cause great losses. The international Soka Gakkai Daisaku Ikeda, President of http://www.SGI.org/CHT/SGI-President/daily-encouragement/

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