Teachings from Tsukamoto Shonin

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Counting Stars for Happiness

The first dream we have in the New Year is called “Hatsu Yume” in Japan. There is a traditional custom of determining whether the New Year will be lucky or unlucky based on the features of this dream...

No Anger Day

We are Buddhist, aren't we? If so, how often do you feel "I am a Buddhist" by yourself in your daily life? - When you are chanting or meditating? When you see Buddhist items or the image of Buddhism on TV? There must be various situations...

Values of Enlightenment

To a greater or lesser extent, we all have some troubles in our life. Even if your own troubles are very serious, others may not appreciate how serious yours are. In such a situation you may come to the conclusion that, “In the final analysis, no one really understands me!”...

The Wonder of the Odaimoku

Nichiren Shū teaches people to chant Odaimoku “Namu Myōhō Renge Kyō” on a daily basis. The Lotus Sūtra, which is the Buddha’s final teaching, expounds all essences of the Buddha’s enlightenment based on the universal law of all things in nature. It is said traditionally that when we chant Odaimoku with all our heart...

The King of Hell

Buddhism is a teaching for compassion and peacefulness. Thus, there are many benevolent Buddhas, Bodhisattvas and Gods. However, there are some people who think, “Buddhism is a compassionate teaching and although we violate the Buddhist precepts there is no one to impart a punishment.”...

The Spider's Thread

This year is the year of the Cow. The character of the Cow is usually steady, simple and peaceful; but once angered it has the tendency to be rough and violent. Pay attention to the world, since last year we have encountered a global economic crisis which has slowed business and increased unemployment, and also a dispute between Israel and Palestine...

O-Bon and O-Higan

Every year we have important events in Nichiren Shū. Obon is one of those big events. According to tradition, it is said around Obon time the lid of the pot of hell opens, which means the door of the spiritual world opens; and it is a time when our ancestors return to their home in this world. 

The Third Treasure: Sangha

In Buddhism, there are Three Treasures in the Doctrine. They are known as "Sanbō" in Japanese: Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. Buddha means the object for worship, Dharma means the teaching to rely on and Saṅgha means a religious order...

Sweep dirt, clean grime!

As the end of the year approaches, Japanese people perform general housecleaning for the whole house. This is an annual tradition in Japan called “O-Soji” which means “O” major, “Soji” cleaning. This includes peoples' wishes that by cleaning the old year’s dirt, they wish to clean and purify the bad elements or karma from the old year in order to have a good new year...

James' Slope

In Central Tokyo, there is a gentle slope which was named after a Western person. It is called “James’ Slope”. The name of this slope has never been changed since it was first named over 100 years ago, even during an antagonistic renaming campaign during WWII. This name is derived from ‘John M. James’ (1839-1908) who was a British Captain...

The Train-Conductor Bodhisattva

Buddhism teaches us how important it is to associate people with compassion. A compassionate deed or idea is called, “The way of Bodhisattva”. This is an essential concept for attaining enlightenment and for bettering your life. Hence people who live life this way are called “Bodhisattvas”. I would like to talk about a Bodhisattva whom I met when I was travelling in Europe a long time ago...