Explanations of Buddhist Terms and Concepts
as Applied to the Teachings of
Nichiren Daishōnin

 

Actual Fundamental Substance, the – Japanese: Tōtai
The actual fundamental substance is what the fundamental nature really is; it is what all dharmas (things) actually are. [See also Treatise on the Significance of the Actual Fundamental Substance.]

Ajase – Sanskrit: Ajātashatru
The son of King Bimbisāra of Magadha an ancient kingdom in Central India. Urged on by Daibadatta (Devadatta), he killed his father, a devout follower of Shākyamuni, and ascended to the throne to become one of the most influential rulers of his time. Later he contracted a terrible disease and in remorse for his acts became a follower of the Buddha teaching and supported the First Buddhist Council.

Amida Buddha – Japanese: Amida Butsu – Sanskrit: Amitāyus Buddha
The Buddha of Infinite Life or Amitābha Buddha the Buddha of Infinite Light. According to the Sutra on Universally Incalculable Longevity, the gist of the teaching of the Immaculate Terrain is that, many kalpas ago, there was a king who renounced his throne in order to become a monk by the name of Hōzō. At this time, there was a Buddha called Sejizai-ō, from whom Hōzō sought guidance in order to attain to enlightenment. He made a series of forty-eight vows and avowed to establish his own Buddha terrain. In his eighteenth vow, Hōzō promised to bring all sentient beings to his Immaculate Terrain, which he called Ultimate Bliss (Gokuraku), on the invocation of his name. After innumerable kalpas of austerities, he finally became enlightened as the Buddha Amida. In accordance with his eighteenth vow, all those people who bear in mind the Buddha Amida’s formula with sincerity can be reborn in his Immaculate Terrain. In the esoteric doctrine, the Buddha Amida is the Buddha of the western region.

Anan – Japanese: Anan – Sanskrit: Ānanda
One of Shākyamuni’s ten major disciples, he was also one of Shākyamuni’s cousins. He is said to have accompanied the Buddha wherever he went and therefore heard more of his teachings than any other disciple or bodhisattva. Anan was also said to have a perfect memory and played a central role in compiling the Sutras at the First Buddhist Council.

Arhat – Japanese: Arakan
The highest attainment in the teaching of the individual vehicle (shōjō, hīnayāna), in which all delusions and attachments are eradicated, and a state is reached where one is worthy of offering.

Arrive at the Path, to – Japanese: Jōdō [See also Becoming a Buddha.]

Ashura or Shura – Sanskrit: Ashūra
This category of mythological being is in many ways comparable to the Titans in Greek mythology, the mythological giants of Northern Europe, or the ogres in Northern European folklore. The shura are always fighting with the deva for supremacy; in one account they stand in the midst of the ocean with the water coming up to their knees. There is no clear iconography and they are seen as one of the dimensions of our mind. See also “shura” in Ten psychological realms of the dharmas.]

Asōgi – Sanskrit: Asankhya, Asamkhyeya
This word is often understood as meaning countless or innumerable. It is said to be a huge number that is represented by one digit and fifty-one zeros.

Attain to the Path, to – Japanese: Tokutō [See also Becoming a Buddha]

Becoming a Buddha, on – Japanese: Jōbutsu
This term is also used to refer to “attaining to the Path”, “to arrive at the Path”, “the Buddha harvest”, and “to become universally and correctly awakened”. Broadly stated, “to become a Buddha” indicates the result of the bodhisattva’s practice over a long period of kalpas, in order to bring about a final severance and conclusion to his troublesome worries and finally to attain enlightenment. The individual vehicle (shōjō, hīnayāna) propounds attainment to the path, by cutting off and resolving thirty-four misleading views. The universal vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna) shows the gradual progressive ascent, through a sequence of forty-one or fifty-two stages. Nevertheless, in these teachings that came before the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), it was clearly shown that people of an evil disposition, women, and people of the two vehicles could never become universally and correctly awakened. The contrary view comes with the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), in its exposition of all beings and all things being endowed with the Buddha nature and that it is possible to open one’s Buddha nature, with one’s person being as it is. The technical term for this is “one’s person is not separate from becoming a Buddha”; and, when reference is made to the inanimate, it is called “plants and trees becoming Buddhas”.

The concept of becoming a Buddha differs according to the various schools. The Flower Garland School (Kegonshū) claims that one becomes a Buddha by being totally immersed in one’s faith. The School of Watchful Attention (Zenshū) directly points to the mind of the individual and states that enlightenment is reached when the fundamental nature of things is perceived. The School of the Immaculate Terrain (Jōdoshū) asserts that being reborn in the Immaculate Terrain of Amida Buddha amounts to the Buddha harvest. Other schools have different notions, but none of them are the equivalent of the notion that one’s person is not separate from becoming a Buddha. The significance of this concept is expounded in the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). In the doctrine derived from the external events of the Buddha Shākyamuni’s life and work of that sutra, it is the substantiation of the intrinsicality of the real aspect of all dharmas (things). And the teaching of the original gateway reveals that one becomes a Buddha with an ordinary body of flesh and blood, in the midst of the harsh practicalities of our respective societies. This means that, by holding faith in the Buddha teachings of the seeds planted within the text of the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō, Saddharma) of Nichiren Daishōnin, it is possible to arrive at a correct and individuated vision of society. Becoming a Buddha, which is none other than opening up our inherent Buddha nature, does not imply that we are awakened to something that goes beyond ordinary human beings, but to become fully aware of the Buddha as the final, unchanging superlative that fundamentally exists, independent of all action, and is the actual fundamental substance.

Becoming universally and correctly awakened – Japanese: Jōtōshōgaku [See also Becoming a Buddha.]

Birushana – Sanskrit: Vairocana
The name of this Buddha means belonging to, or coming from the sun, i.e., light. According to some Buddhist schools he represents the real Buddha entity.

Bodhisattvas who swarm up from the earth – Japanese: Jiyu no bosatsu
The innumerable bodhisattvas who appeared out of the earth, in the Fifteenth Chapter on the Bodhisattvas who Swarm up out of the Earth of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), are the disciples of the eternal Shākyamuni the original Buddha, who is identified with Nichiren Daishōnin. In this chapter of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), these bodhisattvas pledged to spread abroad the teachings of the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō, Saddharma) during the final phase of the Dharma of the historical Shākyamuni. These bodhisattvas alone are entrusted with this assignment. In the strictest sense, only Nichiren is the incarnation of the bodhisattvas who swarmed up out of the earth, but this term also implies the people who practise and do what they can to propagate this teaching. [See also Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas.]

Body and Terrain – Japanese: Shindo
All sentient beings possess a body that needs a terrain on which to depend for an existence. [See also Subjectivity and its dependent environment are not two.]

Bonten – Sanskrit: Mahābrahman
According to some Hindu teachings, Bonten is the highest god and even the creator of the universe. In the Nichiren Kōmon school, he is, with Taishaku, one of the principal deva who protect the dharma. [See also deva and benevolent spirits.]

Buddha– Japanese: Butsu , hotoke
From the Sanskrit Budh, to be aware of, to observe, or be awakened. Buddha – completely conscious or enlightened, has come to take on the meaning of one who enlightens – one endowed with perfect wisdom, boundless compassion, and the purpose of whose advent in the world is to set all beings on the Buddha Path. This is defined in detail in the Second Chapter on Expedient Means of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). There is an original Buddha, discussed in the Sixteenth Chapter on the Lifespan of the Tathāgata of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), who is the Buddha of the primordially infinite, original beginning and stands in contrast to the temporary Buddhas of the temporary gateways to the Dharma. He is also the oneness of the person and the Dharma of Nichiren Daishōnin and whose other attributes are defined as the actual fundamental substance of the self-received reward body that is used by the Tathāgata. There are many other Buddhas who are considered to be emanations of the Indian Shākyamuni (c. sixth-fifth century BCE). [See also Shākyamuni.]

Buddha harvest – Japanese: Sabutsu [See also Becoming a Buddha.]

Buddha's own practise, the – Japanese: Jigyō
The Buddha's own practise implies the Buddha's own conduct. His practise for others means his guidance for other people.

Ceremony in Empty Space, the – Japanese: Kokūe no gishiki
One of the three assemblies contained in the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), it extends from the end of the Eleventh Chapter on Seeing the Vision of the Stupa made of Precious Materials to the middle of the Twenty-second Chapter on the Assignment of the Mission. In the Fifteenth Chapter on the Bodhisattvas who Swarm up out of the Earth, the Bodhisattvas who swarm up out of the earth make their appearance. This is the moment where the original gateway begins. In the Sixteenth Chapter on the Lifespan of the Tathāgata, the Buddha Shākyamuni reveals his original enlightenment in the distant past of five hundred kalpas with all the dharmas in them ground into grains of dust. But, in the teaching that is esoterically submerged within the text, this concept of a distant past becomes the ever-present infinite in time (kuon ganjo).

In the Twenty-first Chapter on the Reaches of the Mind of the Tathāgata, the Buddha transfers the essential of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) to the Bodhisattvas who swarm up out of the earth. This can only be Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō). The Buddha transfers this to the Bodhisattvas who swarm up out of the earth led by the Bodhisattva Jōgyō, entrusting them with the assignment of broadly propagating it during the final phase of the Dharma of Shākyamuni (mappō). In the teaching of Nichiren, the Ceremony in Empty Space implies the whole of the original gateway.

The Ceremony in Empty Space occurred nowhere except in Shākyamuni’s head. Tahō’s stupa represents our objective surroundings. All of the original gateway happened in the same space as Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō. As for Nichiren Daishōnin’s understanding of the theme and title, Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō – which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō) – you cannot see it, smell it, taste it, touch it, or even feel it – it is just there. It is the way existence functions. [See also Empty Space.]

Chain of the twelve causes and karmic circumstances that run through the whole of sentient existence – Japanese: jūni in.nen
1. mumyō, a fundamental unenlightenment which leads to
2. gyō, dispositions that are inherited from former lives;
3. shiki, the first consciousness that takes place in the womb after conception;
4. myō, shiki, body and mind evolving in the womb;
5. rokunyū, the five organs of sense and the functioning of the mind;
6. shoku, contact with the outside world;
7. ju, receptivity or budding intelligence and discrimination from six to seven years onwards;
8. ai, thirst, desire, or love at the age of puberty;
9. shu, the urge for sensuous existence that forms the following:
10. , the substance of future karma;
11. shō, the completed karma ready to be born again;
12. , shi, karma facing in the direction of old age and death.

Cognition of Consciousness, the – Japanese: Ishiki – Sanskrit: Mano-vijnaña
This is the consciousness of what we perceive and feel with regard to what is going on around us or inside us. The first five cognitions (shikivijñāna) have their own organs to detect whatever they are supposed to sense, such as eyes for seeing or ears for hearing, whereas the cognition of conscious mental activity (ishikimano-vijnaña) is totally dependent on the mind as the faculty of thought (i, manas). It is due to the cognition of conscious mental activity that makes us aware of our own existence.

Cognition of Pure Mind, the - Japanese: Amarashiki - Sanskrit: Amala-vijñāna
In Japanese, there are various definitions of this cognition – the cognition free from defilement, the immaculately pure cognition (shōjōshiki), the cognition of real suchness (shinnyoshiki). The word cognition is used to indicate a way of knowing dharmas (or whatever may have an effect on any of our five aggregates) whether they are inside our heads or not. The nine cognitions are as follows:
1) The cognition of the eyes - seeing;
2) The cognition of the ears - hearing;
3) The cognition of the nose - smelling;
4) The cognition of the tongue - taste;
5) The cognition of the body - touch;
6) The cognition of mental activity without precise thought, just seeing, hearing etc., as well as instinctive reactions;
7) The cognition of mind as the faculty of thought;
8) The storehouse cognition;
9) The cognition of pure mind.

Tendai (T’ien T’ai) refers to the ninth cognition as the sovereign of the mind and the fundamental source of all the dharmas (or whatever may have an effect on any of our five aggregates), as well as being the central axis on which they revolve. In other words, it is everything that is inscribed on the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) or the very essence of life itself. In the Buddha teaching of Shākyamuni, this cognition is sometimes described as having got rid of the taints of delusion that are associated with the storehouse cognition arayashiki, alaya-vij˝āna. Tendai (T’ien T’ai) also writes, in his Recondite Significance of the Sutra on the Illumination of the Golden Light, “The ninth is the cognition of the Buddha.” However, in the Buddha teaching of Nichiren Daishōnin, it is understood that the Buddha realm (Bukkai) is not separate from the other nine realms of dharmas (kyukai). Hence, through the continual practice of the Nichiren Kōmon School and by developing a faith in the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon), we can open up our inherent Buddha nature with our respective persons just as they are (soku shin jō Butsu).

Consecrate one's life on, to [See also Namu.]

Corresponding body – Japanese: ōjin [See also Three bodies.]

Corresponding body independent of all karma, the – Japanese: Musa no ōjin
This corresponding body is the entity of materiality (shiki shin) of the three bodies independent of all karma. In the same way as appearance () in the ten such qualities (nyoze), the term also refers to the Buddha’s compassionate behaviour. In this sense, it is the self-received entity of the Tathāgata, whose freedom pervades the whole of existence and whose original source lies in the ever-present infinite in time (kuon ganjo). This is the physical body (shiki shin) and the conduct of Nichiren Daishōnin, the original Buddha (Honbutsu) and the Buddha for the present age, which is the final phase of the Dharma of Shākyamuni (mappō). In Concerning the Practice of the Present School by the former Patriarch Nichikan (1665-1726), he states, “When the objective realm of the Whole of Existence combines with the Buddha wisdom that is able to understand it, this understanding would certainly be endowed with an all-embracing compassion, as well as the arousal and motivation of universal loving-kindness. The result of this arousal becomes the corresponding body independent of all karma that is also the freedom from being aware of living and dying.” It is the practical application of Utterness (Myō). The sacred title of the corresponding body independent of all karma is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which is the consecration and founding of our lives on the Utterness of the Dharma (both the enlightened and unenlightened facets of the entirety of existence) permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect in its whereabouts of the ten (psychological) realms of dharmas.

Daibadatta – Sanskrit: Devadatta
A cousin of Shākyamuni who later opposed him out of jealousy, at one point he attempted to kill the Buddha by sending a mad elephant against him. Nevertheless, it was pacified by the Buddha’s all-embracing compassion. Daibadatta (Devadatta) committed three of the five cardinal wrongdoings – firstly, by causing a rift in the order by enticing five hundred of the disciples away from it; secondly, by trying to kill Shākyamuni by dropping a boulder on him; and thirdly, he beat a nun to death because she criticised him for his wrongdoing. On account of these actions, he fell into hell alive. In the Twelfth Chapter on Daibadatta (Devadatta) of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), Shākyamuni revealed that in a former life he had practised under a certain hermit called Ashi, who was now Daibadatta (Devadatta). The Buddha (Shākyamuni) then predicted that Daibadatta (Devadatta) would become the Buddha Tennō. The importance of Daibadatta (Devadatta) is that the Buddha teaching reveals that a totally evil individual can become a Buddha.

Daishōnin – Japanese: Daishōnin
The Universal sage-like Man. The title given to Nichiren, the Buddha for the period of the final phase of the Dharma of Shākyamuni. Dai means all-embracing or universal; shōnin means sage, wise and good, upright and correct in all his character. This word, with the same feeling as “sage-like” in English, implies completeness. The Shōnin is the opposite of the common or unenlightened individual. Daishōnin carries the connotation of a Buddha and, in the case of Nichiren, that of the original Buddha.

Daitsū Buddha (also known as The Victorious Buddha of Universal Penetrating Wisdom) – Japanese: Daitsūchisho Butsu – Sanskrit: Mahābhijnajnanabhibhu Buddha
According to the Seventh Chapter on the Parable of the Imaginary City of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), Daitsū Buddha was a king who attained to Buddhahood in the distant past of three thousand kalpas of grains ground into dust. At the request of his sixteen sons, he expounded the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). All the sons of The Victorious Buddha of Universal Penetrating Wisdom propagated the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) as bodhisattvas. The sixteenth son was reincarnated as Shākyamuni Buddha.

Dengyō – Japanese: Dengyō daishi
Referred to as the Universal Teacher Dengyō (Dengyō daishi) and was the founder of the Japanese Tendai School. He was born in the Shiga district in Ōmi, the present-day Shiga Prefecture, in 767 CE and died in 822 CE. He entered into holy orders at the age of twelve and studied under Gyōhyō in the Kokubunji Temple at Ōmi. He was fully ordained in 785 CE in the Todaiji temple. Some time afterwards, he returned to his native village and later built a hermitage on Mount Hiei, where he combed through in depth all the commentaries of the sutras. In 788 CE, he named his hermitage Hieiji temple, and, in 793 CE, it was renamed “The Setting the Mind at Rest in the Single Vehicle” (Ichijō Shikan-in). In 804 CE, he went to China where he studied the Tendai (T’ien T’ai) doctrine under Dōsui, Gyōman, and others. On returning to his native Japan, he founded the Japanese Tendai School, in 806 CE. Towards the end of his life, he received various honours from the Imperial Court.

Deva and benevolent spirits, all the – Japanese: Shoten Zenjin
In traditional Buddhist teaching, a deva is a heavenly being, a protective divinity. According to some accounts, the deva are divinities of Indian origin, and the benevolent spirits are traditional Japanese gods. Although these forces are personalised, given names and called divinities, the problem that arises is how these deva and benevolent spirits are understood in any “western” way of thinking. However, the deva and benevolent spirits could be seen to be both outside and within us. The forces on the outside, for example, are such as those that maintain the planet Earth on a proper course and the right distance from the sun. These are also the forces of nature that maintain the necessary conditions to support life and the subtle universal ecology. The forces within us are more to do with archetypes and agencies that give added strength. The deva and benevolent spirits are more than that for those who follow the full practice of the Nichiren Kōmon School. For, as they will testify, although life is full of problems and obstacles, there is little doubt that those who have faith in this teaching believe it will overcome their hindrances better than for those who do not. [See also Bonten.]

Dhāranî – Japanese: Darani
A syllabic invocation for bringing out the good and repressing evil in the teachings that came prior to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). Very often dhāranî are regarded as the quintessence of a teaching, either tantric or sutric. It is thought that strong spiritual powers are embodied in these syllables, which rarely have any linguistic meaning, in contrast to the theme and title of the daimoku which is composed of words with a precise and all-embracing significance. [See also Nam myōhō renge kyō.]

Dharma body – Japanese: Hosshin [See also Three bodies.]

Dharma body independent of all karma, the Japanese: Musa hosshin
This is one of the three bodies independent of all karma, whose origin is in the ever-present infinity in time (kuon ganjo). This is the real embodiment of the whole of life which in practice is the self-received body, i.e., the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) that is not separate from the lord of the teaching Nichiren Daishōnin who, for the people of the final period of the Dharma of Shākyamuni (mappo), is the lord of the teaching of the seeds sown in the Utterness of original cause (Honnin Myō). The actual reality is the consecration and founding of our lives on the Utterness of the Dharma (both the enlightened and unenlightened facets of the entirety of existence) permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect in its whereabouts of the ten (psychological) realms of dharmas, i.e., Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō.

Nichikan Shonin (1666-1726) who was a former patriarch of the Nichiren Kōmon School states, in his Treatise on the Practice of the Present School, that the three bodies independent of all karma are the virtue and power of the self-received wisdom body of the Tathagāta, whose one entity is not separate from the three entities that comprise existence ... ... our persons are the objective environment (Kyō) when our inherent Buddha nature is opened up. This in itself is not separate from the Dharma body independent of all karma. In the sixth fascicule of the Universal Desistance from Troublesome Worries in order to see Clearly (Maka Shikan), it says, “When we perceive the objective environment as enlightenment (Kyō), it then becomes the Dharma body, i.e., the whole of existence. And, when this body manifests its own wisdom, it then becomes the wisdom body independent of all karma. The effects or the actions that this wisdom brings about then become the compassion of the corresponding body.”

Again, these three bodies become the three powers or virtues of the Buddha as sovereign, teacher, and parent, as well as his essential nature of being the Dharma, wisdom, and his own complete liberation. This is said to be the Dharma body independent of all karma, as the initial building block of the whole of existence – past, present, and future – as well as being the embodiment of Utterness (Myōtai) ... ... The sacred title of this entity is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō). This is the fundamental part that enables all sentient beings to open up their inherent Buddha nature with their persons just as they are, as well as being the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) of the three universal esoteric Dharmas (doctrines) both within us and outside us.

One of the many obstacles in the practice of the teaching of Nichiren Daishōnin is that, like so many other studies such as linguistics or mathematics, it has its own particular language. The unfamiliarity of these specialised terms is highly related to the whole problem of translating Buddhist texts.

The origins of existence are in the twists, turns, and workings of the whole of existence itself. So, if we are to talk of an original state, then it is something that potentially lives in the profoundest depths of our own minds – in other words, the existential realm of the Dharma. In the teaching of Nichiren Daishōnin, the Buddha nature inherent in all of us is understood as the three bodies independent of all karma. Apart from the fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon), the position of any concept of a pure corresponding body (ōjin), a pure wisdom to fully comprehend it (hōshin), or a combination of the two (hosshin) suspended in an apparent origin of time is highly hypothetical. In this present kalpa, it took the whole of evolution from the inception of existence right through to the arrival of living beings, through all the Buddhas from Shākyamuni, Nāgārjuna, Tendai (T’ien T’ai), Dengyō (Dengyō daishi), and many others, right on up to Nichiren before we could get a grasp of how we should conceive these three bodies independent of all karma.

The contents of the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) are the whole of life in their purest form. Earlier representations of the whole of life are Shākyamuni’s Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), and the exposition of Tendai (T’ien T’ai), and the commentaries of Myōraku (Miao-lo), and others, of the Universal Desistance of Troublesome Worries in order to see Clearly (Maka Shikan). But it is only Nichiren’s Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) that brings us face to face with the three bodies independent of all karma, all at the same time.

In the Buddhist view of the world at the time of Nichiren Daishōnin, the realms of humankind were confined to China, Japan, Korea, Central Asia, and India. So the principal languages for Buddhists were either Chinese or Sanskrit. Since the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) is written out in Chinese with two germ syllables written in the Siddham alphabet of Sanskrit, I personally am in favour of the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) for the twenty-first century being written out in either Latin, Greek, or Cyrillic script for the benefit of those who cannot read the Chinese ideograms. However, this is not for me to decide.

Coming back to the point, we have to be very careful not to confuse knowledge with wisdom. Although Nichiren was not aware of the worlds beyond the traditions of his time when there was no real understanding of the whys and hows of present-day science which is only knowledge, the inherent Buddha wisdom of the Daishōnin was able to penetrate the mind of each and every individual, as well as the whole of the oneness of mind. All we need to know about mind is inscribed on the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon), which is also the means that can make us understand why we live and die.

Dharma Flower School, the – Japanese: Hokkeshū
This is another name for the Tendai and Nichiren Schools, whose teaching was founded on the literal understanding of the Sutra on the White Lotus Flower-like Mechanism of the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō Renge Kyō). This sutra teaches that the Buddha was enlightened in a distant past of uncountable aeons ago. This sutra also points out that all sentient beings, as well as everything else that is non-sentient, has an inherent Buddha nature, which is clearly defined in the concept of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces (ichinen sanzen). This same teaching also emphasises that women, people of the two vehicles, and people of evil disposition, can open their inherent Buddha nature. No other sutra even suggests this. The origin is not an inconceivable distant time, but the ever-present in the infinitive in time.

Dharma or Dharma nature (The essence of the) – Sankrit: Dharmatā, Japanese: Hosshō
If we are to understand the teaching of Nichiren Daishōnin by taking what he wrote into deep consideration, then one’s existence is made up of all space, all time – past, present, and future – of all the kalpas and without effort. This is what is so difficult to believe and understand. In the Daishōnin’s Treatise on the Eighteen Perfect Circles, we have, “On enquiring into the self-nature of all dharmas, we should abandon any notion of a dharma nature and replace it with the triple body independent of all karmas [i.e., phenomena (ke), relativity (), and the middle way of reality (chū) of the Dharma realm of the utterly enlightened]. If there are dharmas, then not one of them is not the triple body independent of all karma.” The exception to this is the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon).

The essence of the Dharma is:
1) The fundamental quality of all life and all dharmas;
2) The fundamental quality of life, which is explained as the enlightenment to the essence of the Dharma. This is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō). It is perceived as shining through both defiled and pure dharmas. In this case, the essence of the Dharma is enlightenment, as opposed to the unclearness of unenlightenment. Generally speaking, this essence is the eternal, unchanging, and originally endowed disposition of all dharmas. Both the real suchness (shinnyo) and the real aspect (jissō) are the same as the essence of the Dharma. This means to say that it is the real aspect and fundamental nature of all existence.

In the third Chapter on the eighteen essences in the second fascicle of the Sutra on Controlling Existence, it says, “When we break up the characteristics of anything at any given moment, or any particular item or items that may touch upon our senses or mental faculties either consciously or unconsciously, they are referred to as the essence of dharmas, which are explained as all existence or the essence of the Dharma or Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō. The essence of the Dharma implies that nothing has an independent nature of its own. Why is that so? It is because the essence of the Dharma has no past, no future, and no present. It is because of all the inherent karmic relations and the combination of various affinities that the essence of the Dharma can be named and explained for what it is. It is on account of ordinary people’s understanding of things that the wise can conceive them – that the relativity () of any independent nature is the essence of the Dharma, which is the essence of the whole of existence. The essence of the Dharma cannot be combined with anything, nor can it be dispersed. In the middle of the essence of the dharmas, the essence of the Dharma is without characteristics. There is neither so much, nor is there so little. This essence is expounded as an expedient means. When we put a name to the essence of the Dharma, we refer to it as its inherent quality.”

It is said that the essence of the Dharma stems from the innermost origins of life itself and manifests itself in the everyday activities of our lives (seikatsu). The essence of the Dharma is the one instant of mind (that comprises the whole of existence).

Dharma realm, the – Japanese: Hokkai [See also Realm of the dharmas.]

Dharmas, all – Japanese: Shohō
The whole of existence, everything that exists either in the mind or physically. The sum total of the momentary configuration of events.

Dharmas and dharma– Japanese:
Generally speaking, this word in most western dictionaries is defined as something that maintains a certain character always and thus becomes a standard. In order to understand this term more clearly, we should begin with dharmas in the plural. Dharmas are anything we perceive, whether it be with our minds or any other organ of perception. This implies the farthest meanderings of the mind as we drop off to sleep to the stark realities of what is in front of us. It might be said that dharmas could be equated with our word existence or life. Since our existences are subjective, we could think of dharmas as being all that comprises our lives.

Sometimes the word Dharma is used as a term for a teaching, and in this book in particular it is used for the doctrines that Shākyamuni expounded prior to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). For us common mortals, existence is a plurality of all the things that make up our lives that encumber our perception of what their real components are – which are all the single instant of mind containing three thousand existential spaces (ichinen sanzen) or Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō).

However, to the enlightened, the universe we inhabit becomes a unity. Just as Nichiren states in his Treatise on the Eighteen Perfect Circles (Goshō Shimpen, p.1514), “The fourth is the perfect circle of the ocean of fruition. On seeking the self-nature of all dharmas, we should put aside the notion of a self-nature and replace it with the triple body independent of all karma. There is no dharma that is not the triple body. Therefore, they are referred to as the fruition and reality of understanding the lotus flower-like mechanism that pervades all existence and all time.”

Also, the word Dharma refers to the teachings that are derived from the perception of oneness. Some translators use a capital D for this concept of the Dharma. Although there is only one word in Japanese which is , in these translations I render the difference between those two concepts with a singular and a plural.

Dhyāna – Japanese: Zenna or Zenjō
Meditation or contemplation. Sometimes this word is understood as an ultramundane experience. It is also thought of as an especially profound abstract religious contemplation. Another interpretation is to be immersed unwaveringly and solely in the object of meditation. Religious ecstasy has also been suggested. Although we may come across this word in the Writings of Nichiren Daishōnin, there is no such meditational practise in the Nichiren Kōmon School.

Dragon – Japanese: Ryū
In China and Japan, these beings are mostly seen as benevolent divinities that live in watery places such as the sea, rivers, lakes, ponds, and also in the clouds. In some cults, dragons are invoked to produce rain. They are also said to be the holders of the Hoshu [Sanskrit: Chintamani], the magic jewel that dispenses treasures and wisdom. They are usually represented as having long scaly bodies, with four clawed reptile-like feet and a lion-like head with antlers.

Dragon King's daughter, the – Japanese: Ryūnyō
In the Twelfth Chapter on Daibadatta (Devadatta), the eight-year-old daughter of one of the great Dragon Kings sought to become a Buddha, after hearing Ma˝jushrī (Monjushiri) speak in her father’s palace under the sea. At a later date, the Dragon King’s daughter, on hearing Shākyamuni’s exposition on Spirit Vulture Peak (Ryojusen, Gridhrakūta) and her body being suddenly transformed into that of a boy, immediately attained enlightenment and became a Buddha. In the teachings prior to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), women were said not to be able to attain to enlightenment, and only men could attain it after many kalpas of austerities. Such notions are refuted by the example of the Dragon King’s daughter becoming a Buddha. There is also the implication that our animality is endowed with the Buddha nature and that it is possible to attain to the path. [See also Ten psychological realms of the dharmas.]

Eight classifications of Shākyamuni's teaching – Japanese: shikyō, shi kegi
These eight Tendai (T’ien T’ai) classifications of Shākyamuni’s doctrine are again divided into the four kinds of teaching and the four modes of instruction. The four kinds of teaching are a progressive guidance according to the propensities of his disciples, to enable them to fully understand the gateway to the enlightenment of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) – firstly, the teaching of the three receptacles which imply all the doctrines of the individual vehicle (shōjō, hīnayāna); secondly, the interrelated teachings which act as an intermediate step between the individual vehicle (shōjō, hīnayāna) and the universal vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna); thirdly, the Particular Teaching that was particularly for people who were bodhisattvas; fourthly, the All-inclusive Teaching which is the perfect doctrine of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) and the real intention of Shākyamuni.

The four modes of instruction are as follows: firstly, the Direct Teaching without holding any of the truth back – the Flower Garland Sutra and the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) fall into this category; secondly, the Graded Teachings which include most of the teachings of the three receptacles, the interrelated teachings, and the Wisdom Sutras; thirdly, the Esoteric and Secret Doctrines only understood by special members of the assembly; fourthly, the Indeterminate Teachings from which all hearers each obtain growth and wisdom according to their individual propensities.

Emma – Sanskrit: Yama-rāja
Often thought of as the King of Hell, he is said to try to punish all those who fall into his domain. He is the symbol of the severity of karma.

Empty Space
This is one of the most difficult concepts to be made comprehensible to ordinary people. According to the wisdom period of the teaching of Shākyamuni, each and every dharma is noumena and therefore relativity. Where did the Ceremony in Empty Space occur? I suppose it happened in the same dimension as Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which implies devoting our lives to and founding them on the Utterness of the Dharma (both the enlightened and unenlightened facets of the entirety of existence) permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect in its whereabouts of the ten (psychological) realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength]. One can only surmise that it all happened in Shākyamuni’s head, so as to make such concepts available to his listeners. Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō is inaccessible to any of our means of perception. It is just there, and we can become aware of it by simply being alive.

Esoterically inaccessible – Japanese: Himitsu
Within the bounds of the Buddha teaching, this expression is used for something that is difficult to know or understand. An esoteric (Hi) gateway to the Dharma is one that is far-reaching, deep, and subtly all-embracing. As such, it cannot be fully thought out or conclusively deliberated upon. In the Textual Explanation of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Hokke Mongu), it says, “The one body being inseparable from the three is said to be esoteric, and the three bodies being inseparable from the one are said to be inaccessible. It is also referred to as that which has not been revealed since primeval times. And, only being known to the Buddha, it is said to be inaccessible.”

Extent of the esoteric and almost inaccessible reaches of the mind (of the Tathāgata), the – Japanese: Nyorai himitsu shinzu shi riki(The) Reaches of the Mind (jinzū, abhij˝a)
In the provisional Buddha teachings, this term refers to the Tathāgata's ten ubiquitous, supernatural powers, including the power to shake the earth, issue light from his pores, extend his tongue to the heavens of the Bonten effulgent with light, cause divine flowers and suchlike to rain down from the sky, be omnipresent, and other supernatural powers of the eye, ear, body, and mind. In the teachings of Nichiren, the implications are that, as there is not a single being, plant, tree, or dharma whatsoever that is not endowed with the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces, the Buddha nature is everywhere, and its reaches are the totality of Utterness. [See also Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas, Nam myōhō renge kyō, One instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces.]

Fifty-two bodhisattva stages in the process of becoming a Buddha, the – Japanese: Gojuni.i
Fifty-one of these stages are those of the bodhisattvas who practised the teachings that came before the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). Nichiren, in A Collation of the Layers of the Various Teachings of all the Buddhas of the Past, Present and Future as to Which Specific Doctrines are to be Discarded or Established, mentions these doctrines as being like the good and evil in a dream. It was also a period when the practitioners of these doctrines advanced upwards through fifty-one of these stages like the rungs of a ladder. The fifty-second stage is the ultimate and utter awakening. Also, the notion of time in all the provisional teachings is like that of a long piece of string, as opposed to the interdependence of cause and effect in the teachings of Nichiren, in which time is understood as the ever-present now in the infinity in time. These fifty-two stages are the following:
– The ten stages of developing faith (Jusshin).
– The ten stages of abiding in the teaching (Juju).
– The ten necessary activities of a bodhisattva (Jugyo).
– The ten stages of bestowing merit on others (Ju.eko).
– The ten stages of firm ground (Juji).
– The stage of the overall awakening (tōgaku).
– The stage of being utterly awakened (myōgaku).

Although these fifty-two stages are mentioned in various writings of Nichiren Daishōnin, they have no role in the practice of the Nichiren Kōmon School whatsoever.

Five aggregates, the – Japanese: go’on
What the five aggregates are about is how our minds and bodies react to our surroundings and the various circumstances of being alive. These five aggregates are the components of all intelligent beings – 1) Shiki, bodily form which involves all our organs of sense; 2) ju, reception, taking things in, feeling, and the workings of mind in relation to whatever is happening to us; 3) , thought in the sense of being able to make out what is happening and what things are; 4) gyō, choice which is the function of mind with regard to picking and choosing between like, dislike, good and bad etc., which is influenced by the experiences of former lives, as well as the mental condition that exists between dying and being reborn; 5) shiki, cognition which means we have perception of what is going on, as well as what we are.

Five ideograms for Myōhō Renge Kyō – Japanese: Myōhō no goji
In Sino-Japanese the title of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) is written with five ideograms for Myō, , ren, ge, kyō and is almost invariably used for Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō [See also Nam myōhō renge kyō.]

Five periods, the – Japanese: Goji
These five periods are a classification that the Universal Teacher Tendai (T’ien T’ai) utilised to indicate the gradation of the lifetime of the Buddha teachings of Shākyamuni. These doctrines were set in an order of five periods, according to their contents. What Shākyamuni taught during the first four periods were various expedient means, with which he could entice his followers to listen to and have faith in the Dharma, which was the reason for his appearance in the world. These periods are the following (for bodhisattvas only):
1. The Flower Garland Period, which was taught in three divisions of seven days each, following his enlightenment, for bodhisattvas only.
2. The twelve years of his expounding the individual teachings, in the Deer Park of Lumbini.
3. The equally broad (hōdō, vaipulya) period, made up of the teaching of the universal teaching, taught over a period of twelve years.
4. The wisdom (hannya, prajña) period, consisting of twenty years of teaching the wisdom sutras.
5. The eight years of teaching the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) and, in a day and one night, the Nirvana Sutra.

Flower Garland School – Japanese: Kegonshū
The Flower Garland School teaches that all sentient beings have the Buddha nature and that all events in the universe are interdependent. Where the teachings of this school fall short is clearly indicated in many writings of Nichiren Daishōnin.

Flower Garland Sutra – Japanese: Kegon Kyō – Sanskrit: Avatāmsaka Sutra
This is said to be the first of all the Five Periods as defined by Tendai (T’ien T’ai), according to whom Shākyamuni expounded this sutra immediately after he became a Buddha. But accounts vary as to whether it was on the second, third or seventh day. The whole title of this sutra is Sutra on Universally Spacious Flower Garland of the Buddha. Its context is that Birushana (Vairocana) expounded to the bodhisattvas who had greater propensities, stating that everything that exists is bound to the rest of existence through circumstances and mutually interdependent roles. This is explained by the formula, “The boundlessness of karmic interdependencies gives rise to the realms of dharmas”. He also explained that, in spite of the appearance that our individual minds are separate, existence is the oneness of mind, stating that, “All dharmas are only mind. And the three realms of form, relativity (), and desire are only knowledge”. But the people who were to do the practices of this teaching had to follow the fifty-two grades of the bodhisattva in order to become a Buddha. To do this, the practitioner would have to practise these austerities over a period of twenty universal asōgi and hundreds of ten of thousands of kalpas.

Formal era of the dharma of Shākyamuni, the – Japanese: Zōbō or When the Dharma was a Superficial Ritual
This is the second millennium after the extinction (Paranirvana) of Shākyamuni. The word Zōbō has something of the sense of “being like the Dharma”. By this time, the Buddha Teaching had spread to China, Korea, and Japan. During this period, many temples, monasteries and convents were built under the patronage of each country’s ruler, which gave the abbots and patriarchs enormous power. In spite of this apparently prosperous period when practices and rites became formalised, the number of believers able to derive benefit from the Buddha Teaching was few.

Four Dependencies, the – Japanese:
These four dependencies are the four important principles, on which the practitioner relies. They are 1) to practise according to the Dharma and not the person who expounds it, 2) to practise according to the intention of the Dharma and not just the words that are used to express it, 3) to practise according to one’s inner wisdom and not according to acquired knowledge, 4) to practise according to the real aspect of the middle way, as it is expounded in the Sutra on Implications Without Bounds (Muryōgi-kyō), and none other.

Four Great Bodhisattvas , the – Japanese: Shi Dai Bosatsu
Jōgyō, Muhengyō, Jyōgyō, and Anryūgyō are the leaders of the countless bodhisattvas who swarmed up out of the earth in the Fifteenth Chapter on the Bodhisattvas who Swarm up out of the Earth of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). In the translation of their names, Jōgyō is Supreme Practice; Muhengyō is Boundless Practice; Jyōgyō is Pure Practice; and Anryūgyō is Peacefully Established Practice. These bodhisattvas are often referred to as the leaders of the chant Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō). Nichiren is seen as the reincarnation of these four Bodhisattvas. In the Threefold Transmission Concerning the Fundamental Object of Veneration Nichiren gives Jōgyō the quality of fire, Muhengyō that of earth, Jyōgyō water, Anryūgyō wind, and the Nam[u] Myōhō Renge Kyō in the centre of the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon), relativity. This same transmission also states that “these five archetypes are our basic composition”.

Fundamental Object of Veneration, the – Japanese: gohonzon
The Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) is what we have as basis for our deepest respect and veneration. Since I do not have the wisdom to define the Fundamental Object of Veneration, there is a Transmission by Nichiren to Nikkō and written out by Nichigen, at the beginning of this book.

Fundamental Substance of the Dharma – Japanese: Hottai
The essential, unchanging nature that underlies all phenomena and noumena which are always subject to change. In the first fascicle of The Oral Transmission on the Meaning of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden), the fundamental substance of the Dharma is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas (Kyō).

Gateway to the Dharma – Japanese: Hōmon
The Doctrines of Wisdom of the Buddha or Nichiren which are seen as gateways to enlightenment. [See also Dharmas, Realms of the dharmas.]

General and Specific – Japanese: sō, betsu
The General and Specific view of things. These two words are a way that allows us to diagnose the teachings of the Buddha. The ‘general’ way of seeing things points to the whole of a teaching or a particular doctrine, whereas the word ‘specific’ represents a deeper analysis, which is more detailed and accurately limited. For example, the five periods and the eight ways of teaching of Shākyamuni all show us the truth. However, from a specific point of view, only the Dharma Flower Sutra (Lotus Sutra) describes reality itself. In the same way, if we were to speak in general terms, the Dharma Flower Sutra represents the enlightened point of view of the Buddha Shākyamuni. However, more specifically, it is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō that reveals the verbal formulation of his enlightenment as to how existence functions, with the added notion that existence always has, is, and will continue to exist.

Nevertheless, the terms general and specific are also used as a way of referring to the transmission of the Dharma in the Dharma Flower Sutra (Lotus Sutra). In the Twenty-second Chapter on the Assignment of the Mission, Shākyamuni generally communicates the Dharma Flower Sutra to all bodhisattvas present. But it is in the Twenty-first Chapter on the Reaches of the Mind of the Tathāgata that the Buddha generally transfers Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō to the Bodhisattvas who Swarmed up Out of the Earth and specifically to the Bodhisattva Superior Practice (Jōgyō, Vishishtachāritra). [See also
Ceremony in Empty Space, Five periods, General Teachings of the Individual Vehicle.]

General Teachings of the Individual Vehicle – Japanese: Agon Kyō – Sanskrit: Āgama Sutra
With regards to the five periods of the teachings of Shākyamuni that were stipulated by Tendai (T’ien T’ai), this is the second. This period is referred to as the Agon Period in some Nichiren Schools. It is also called the teaching of the three receptacles, or the imperishable doctrine. It is said that this period constitutes the first twelve years of the teaching of Shākyamuni, immediately after the six-day period, when he expounded the Flower Garland Sutra. [See also:
Five periods, General and Specific.]

Hell of incessant suffering – Japanese: Abijigoku – Sanskrit: Avici
The last and deepest of the eight hot hells, where those who fall into it suffer, die, and are instantly reborn to suffering without interruption.

Hossō school, the – Japanese: Hossōshū
One of the ten schools mentioned in the Treatise on Questions and Answers Concerning the Fundamental Object of Veneration. This school is sometimes called the Consciousness Only School. This means that the Dharma of the Buddha is a perfect oneness, as opposed to the vision of common mortals who live in a world of countless different dharmas (things) that make up the whole of existence. Therefore, in order to arrive at enlightenment, it is important to understand the real nature of all dharmas. This school also teaches that everything that is perceived, either physical or mental, stems from the cognisance of the mind's storehouse of all dharmas [Japanese: Zōshiki, Sanskrit: Alāya-vijñāna].

Humanlike Non-humans with human intelligence – Japanese: Ninpinin
A classification of eight different kinds of sentient beings that were with the Buddha, bodhisattvas, and other sage-like individuals when Shākyamuni expounded the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) on Spirit Vulture Peak. The eight are the deva who are shining god-like individuals, dragons (ryū, nāga) that have often been represented in far-eastern art, yaksha (yasha) that are comparable to gnomes, dwarves, etc., kendabba (gandharva) that are the musicians of the paradise of Indra, shura (ashura) that are like the titans, giants and ogres of European folklore and myth, karura (garuda) that are mythical birdlike creatures from the Brahmanic pantheon, kinnara (kimnara) that are the celestial musicians at the court of Kuvera who is a Brahmanic god of wealth, and magoraga (mahorāga) that are enormous serpents that crawl on their chests. [See also under individual headings for the humanlike non-humans.]

Implanted Seeds – Japanese: Geshū
This means planting the seeds for becoming a Buddha in the fields of the minds of sentient beings. It is one of the three benefits – the benefit of the planted seeds, the benefit of their maturation, and the benefit of their liberation. In the Buddha teaching of Shākyamuni, the seeds were implanted in sentient beings in a distant past by the Buddha himself. These sentient beings, after doing various practices and cultivating themselves for a long sequence of kalpas, were able themselves to become enlightened. In the process of becoming Buddhas, the seeds that were sown in a distant past had to have their propensities nourished, so as to become mature and attain their liberation. The gateway to the teachings derived from the external events of the Buddha Shākyamuni’s life and work of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) refers to this distant past as being three thousand kalpas with all the dharmas in them ground into grains of dust ago. In the original gateway it clearly defines the Buddha seeds as being implanted in a past of five hundred kalpas of grains of dust.

However, these two instances refer to the people who, due to their karmic relationship to Shākyamuni, were able to open their inherent Buddha nature and are referred to by the technical expression as already being in possession of good from the beginning. When these sentient beings reached the level of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), they were to become emancipated. Those sentient beings who attended the assembly of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) who allowed no deviation from the truth, as well as the people who had an affinity with the provisional universal vehicle during the thousand-year period of the correct Dharma, were able to attain to enlightenment. During the thousand year period of the formal Dharma, there were people who were able to become emancipated through the Universal Desistance from Troublesome Worries in Order to See Clearly (Maka Shikan) of Tendai (T’ien T’ai).

When we look at the implanted seeds of Nichiren, the sentient beings of the final phase of the Dharma of Shākyamuni had neither a relationship with him, nor were they furnished with good roots. These people are described as fundamentally not yet being in possession of goodness. But because the seeds of Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō had been implanted in the primordially infinite original beginning, as well as their acceptance of the Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō of Nichiren, they are able to directly attain to the correct view of realising that one’s person is not separate from becoming a Buddha. [See also Becoming a Buddha.]

Individual Vehicle – Japanese: Shojō – also known as the hīnayāna or Theravāda School
One of the two major streams of the Buddha teaching. Believers in this vehicle hold that the persons who practise this teaching work out their salvation, by holding to the way demonstrated by the Buddha Shākyamuni at the outset of his teaching. There are many adherents to this teaching in Sri Lanka, Thailand, Burma and other parts of South East Asia.

Intrinsicality of the fundamental substance, the – Japanese: Tairi
In the Treatise on the Whole being Contained in the One Instant of Mind, Nichiren writes, “The intrinsicality of the substance that is the three thousand existential spaces, the three axioms of relativity (, shūnyatā), phenomena (ke), and the middle way (chū), as well as the three bodies, is inherently and infinitely existing, which has nothing to do with the makings of humankind.”

Intrinsicality of the real suchness that is immutable in essence and which belongs to the temporary gateway, the – Japanese: Shakumon fuhen shinnyō no ri
This concept becomes apparent in the temporary gateway of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). The real suchness that is immutable in essence implies the eternal unchanging reality that is the intrinsicality of all existence. The real aspect of dharmas (things) that was expounded in the temporary gateway of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) reveals the theoretical principle of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces, which enables all sentient beings everywhere to open their inherent Buddha nature. [See also Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas, Oral Transmission on the Significance of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden).]

Jōgyō, the Bodhisattva – Japanese: Jōgyō Bosatsu [See also Four Great Bodhisattvas.]

Jōjitsu school, the – Japanese: Jōjitsushū
The Jōjitsu School is one of the ten mentioned in Nichiren’s Treatise on Questions and Answers Concerning the Fundamental Object of Veneration. Jōjitsu translated literally means “attaining reality”. This school taught that existence was relativity () and took a negative standpoint with regard to everything, denying the existence of anything whatsoever. This teaching is said to be the highest point of the doctrines of the individual vehicle (shōjō, hīnayāna) and is thought of as the first step towards the universal vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna).

Kalpa – Japanese: – Sanskrit: kalpa
The word kalpa can be equated with “aeon”, and it represents an astronomically long time. There are various ways that kalpa has been defined, and the word has even crept into English. The Oxford Dictionary defines kalpa as ‘(In Hindu and Buddhist tradition) an immense period of time and considered to be the length of a single cycle of the cosmos from creation to dissolution.’ Kalpas are used in various Buddhist writings to represent immeasurably long durations of time. In the Sixteenth Chapter on the Lifespan of the Tathāgata, the Buddha Shākyamuni reveals his original enlightenment in the distant past of five hundred kalpas with all the dharmas in them ground into grains of dust. The important thing to keep in mind is that existence has always existed and will always exist.

Karma – Japanese: Go – Sanskrit: Karman
In most Chinese and Japanese dictionaries, this word has a meaning of business, trade, undertaking, conduct, and achievement. However, within the context of the Buddha teaching, all our “doings”, “deeds”, or workings of some kind, have an effect on our minds and bodies. For example, a bright child full of life becomes a shrewd young boy and later on turns into a bad-tempered old man. Our lives are always influenced by our past and present thoughts and deeds, which we carry beyond our intermediate existence, between dying and being born, into future lives.

Karmic Requital on Subjectivity – Japanese: Shōhō
Requital is a translation of the Japanese word , which is also understood as recompense, retribution, reward, or punishment. In order to take a neutral stance between reward and punishment, I prefer to use the word requital. Karmic requital on our subjectivity is how we feel in relation to any given experience at the instant it occurs. Since all sentient existence is subjective, even if we think we are being objective about it, there is no situation that is not influenced by karma. Karma should be understood as “the goings on” of the totality of existence – past, present, and future.

Karmic Requital on the Environment – Japanese: Ehō
Karmic requital on the environment is how our surroundings appear to us, according to our karmic relationships. A grey day can be a nasty, soggy wet morning or a romantic Bruges peeping through the mist. A hamburger can be delicious, or it is simply fast food. Whatever circumstances we may find ourselves in is a karmic requital on our environment, but it takes a long time and a lot of practise before we genuinely understand that the participation in the terror of an air raid is only mind and the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō, Saddharma). Personally, I am not capable of this.

Karura – Sanskrit: Garuda
These birds originally come out of the Brahmanic pantheon. They were also mortal enemies of the dragons. Only the dragons who possess a Buddhist talisman or who are converted to the Buddhist teaching can escape from them. In Japanese painting, they are represented as large, ornate birds with human heads shown treading on serpents. In Southeast Asia, the walls of temples are often decorated with Karura, as at Angkor or in Java.

Kendabba – Sanskrit: Gandharva
These are the musicians of the heaven of Taishaku and the protectors of the Buddha teaching. In paintings, they are depicted as sitting in the position of royal ease. They also have a halo and are said to nourish themselves on scents.

Kinnara – Sanskrit: Kimnara
The Kinnara are heavenly musicians serving the court of Kuvera. They are also represented in the shape of an exotic bird with a human torso and shown holding a musical instrument. They are reputed to have marvellous voices.

Kusha School, the – Japanese: Kushashū
The text upon which this school is based is the discourses on the Store of Doctrinal Studies of the Dharma (Japanese: Kusharon). This school teaches that the self is insubstantial, whereas the dharma (things) and time really exist. Although Nichiren mentions this as one of the Ten Schools in Japan in his Treatise on Questions and Answers Concerning the Fundamental Object of Veneration, this school never really established itself. However, its teachings were studied by all serious schools of the Buddha Dharma.

Lesser Vehicle [See also Individual Vehicle]

Life, life and destiny – Japanese: Myō, Inochi
This is the totality of one's existence, including karma. There are other meanings of this ideogram, which are beyond the scope of this glossary.

Magoraka – Sanskrit: Mahorāga
Of all the human-like non-humans, the magoraka are the most vaguest. In some Chinese dictionaries, they are defined as serpents who walk on their breasts. They originally belonged to the Brahmanic pantheon, and in Buddhism they have been partly assimilated by the dragons.

Mantra – Japanese: Shingon
This already exists in the Oxford Dictionary. On the whole, mantras are syllabic formulas and abbreviated Sanskrit words that are usually used as an aid to recollect the content of a teaching. This word has a relationship to the Sanskrit word man – to think, recollect, or suppose. With regard to the teaching of Nichiren Daishōnin, Nam[u] Myōhō Renge Kyō is not a mantra; it is the theme and title made up of seven ideograms, each of which has a profound meaning.

Memyō – Sanskrit: Ashvaghosha
A second century Buddhist thinker from the Kingdom of Shravasti in India. He brought many people to the Buddha teaching, due to the quality of his literary style.

Middle way, the – Japanese: Chūdō
There are many explanations of the middle way, but that which is relevant here is that of the Tendai School based on the Treatise on the Median by Nāgārjuna (Ryūju). This is founded in the axiom of relativity, phenomena, and the median or middle way, which inevitably are seen as fused together, and all dharmas can be understood from these three aspects. The phenomenal view of a cup, for example, would be, as it appears with its physical properties of shape, colour, texture, weight, and volume. From the view of relativity, it would be the cup in relation to its surroundings and all that one associates with the word “cup”, the history of cups, or even ceramics – in other words, its spatial and noumenal qualities. However, neither noumenal nor the phenomenal aspects are the reality. Its reality is a fusion of both. Tendai’s (T’ien T’ai) vision goes further to that which he calls the unthinkably unutterable triple axiom of existence – relativity, phenomenon, and the middle way. The unthinkably unutterable is the same as Utterness (Myō), which gives rise to the teaching that the three ways of seeing are contained in the oneness and instant of mind. [See also Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas, Such a final superlative that is equally present from the first to the last of the nine such qualities.]

Mind – Japanese: kokoro, Chinese: shin, i – Sanskrit: citta
Nichiren Daishōnin begins his Treatise on the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) for Contemplating the Mind Instigated by the Bodhisattva Superior Practice (Jōgyō, Vishishtachāritra) For the Fifth Five-hundred-year Period After the Tathāgata’s Passing over to Nirvana (Kanjin no Honzon Shō) by intimating the concept of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces through a quote from Tendai (T’ien T’ai), which summarily goes over it. Nichiren goes on to say, “If there is no mind, then that is the end of it. But even the minutest existence of mind is endowed with the three thousand existential spaces.” Further on, there is another quote that says, “Because it becomes what is called the unthinkably inexplicable realm of objectivity (Fushigikyō) [i.e., the whole of existence, irrespective as to whether it is inside or outside our heads], it is here where the meaning lies.”

However, if we are to talk about existence, it is not too difficult to think of it as the whole of existence. I am here in Flanders which is part of Belgium, which again is a part of the European Union that is on the old continent of the planet Earth, which is part of the solar system that is part of the Milky Way, and so forth. Also, the inner space inside my head is just as vast. Sometimes we randomly use the word “water”, which may have the nuance of water in the tap but also all the water in the sea. Life and mind are almost synonymous.

When I was in Hong Kong during the 1970s, my Chinese Teacher Hsin Kuang made me repeat at the beginning of each session, “All dharmas, i.e., anything that the mind or body can be conscious of, are only mind; and the three realms where 1) sentient beings have appetites and desires, 2) where they are incarnated in physical bodies in physical surroundings, and 3) where they are endowed with a realm of thoughts, dreams, fantasies, and concepts (sangai) are only three ways of perception (shiki).”

Myōraku (Miao-lo) firmly states that the whole of mind can be divided into materiality and mind. This seems to suggest that all the contents of the physical world exist and follow their own laws of 1) coming into being, 2) lasting as long as they should, 3) degenerating and falling apart, 4) then ceasing to exist altogether (shō, ju, i, metsu). This concept would indicate that time is a one-way direction. But if there is no mind to be aware of it, it doesn’t matter.

The experience of being confronted with the experience of the physical and material worlds is the storehouse cognition arayashiki. The day we are born, everything is just there waiting for us to explore and resist. And it is in this way that we build up our karma.

The Buddha teaching of Nichiren helps us to understand that life, or rather living and dying, is a continual experience. But if we endeavour to open up our inherent Buddha nature with our persons just as they are, then everything we undergo becomes richer and more meaningful. The teaching of the Daishōnin is not particularly concerned with how big or how small the universe is or what it is made of. This is a problem for physicists. However, mind (kokoro, shin, i) is limited to all that is inscribed on the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon), which is held in place by the four universal deva kings. Needless to say, all of this is as big as life. Mind is both our conscious world, as well as having all the implications of the unconscious depths as described by the various trends in psychology. Although we may be governed by the archetypes in our respective psyches, they are nevertheless distorted by our karma. The cognition of pure mind is in no way separate from the gohonzon and is the real driving force of life.

This fact is celebrated by the recitation of the title and theme (daimoku), Nam[u] Myōhō Renge Kyō. A rough translation would be to devote one’s life to and to found it on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] (Myōhō) permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō). Our mind is always where it is focused on, whether we are conscious or not. But at the same time, it is the oneness of mind.

In modern Japanese, the word kokoro for mind has acquired many nuances, as has the same word in modern English. [Kenkyusha’s New Japanese English Dictionary, pages 897 to 901.]

Mind, the ideogram for (Japanese: Shin – Sanskrit: Hrdaya) can also refer to the heart as the seat of thought or intelligence. In both cases, the mind or heart is conceived as an eight-petalled lotus. Both sentient beings and the non-sentient objective world possess heart and mind. Since mind is the whole of mind, it is also its own storehouse. This is the storehouse cognition (Japanese: Zōshiki – Sanskrit: Alayavijna˝a) which is the source of all mental activity and the storehouse of all dharmas.

Nichiren Daishōnin, in his Treatise on the Opposing Views of the Eight Schools [Goshō Shimpen, pages 520 & 521], quotes from the fifth fascicle (scroll) of the Universal Desistance from Troublesome Worries in Order to See Clearly (Maka Shikan). It says, “The mind is a skilful artist that creates the five aggregates [which are 1) materiality, physical form, and all that is perceived through the five organs of sense; 2) sensation, feeling, and the functioning of the mind in the way we perceive the world within us and around us; 3) concepts, the power to discern, discriminate and reason; 4) volition and the ability to make informed decisions and the choice of action; 5) cognition and ways of knowing associated with the nature of mind, which is the cognition of all the mental powers]. Out of everything that is to be found in each and every realm of existence, there is nothing that is not created by mind itself – all the variations of the five aggregates that are inherent in our own realms of dharmas.”

Again Nichiren quotes from this treatise towards the end: “Someone may ask, ‘what does it say in the Flower Garland Sutra?’ Then again you must point out that it shows what our inner and outer environment really consists of. As previously mentioned, the mind creates, but what is created is already there in the mind. Therefore, by quoting the text of the mind, creating would imply that the mind already contains what it creates. In the middle of the eighteenth fascicle (scroll) of the Sutra, the Bodhisattva Kotokurin says something like this in his metric hymn. As the mind is a skilful artist that creates the five aggregates, there is not a single dharma in all the existential and dharma realms that is not created by mind. The mind is also the Buddha, and sentient beings are just the same. The mind, the Buddha, as well as sentient beings, are not separate entities. If somebody were to aspire to know all the Buddhas of the past, present, and future, this person should see this aspiration in the following manner: It is the mind that creates all the Tathāgatas.” So from the Buddhist viewpoint, mind and existence are the same. In the Setsumon Geji, the ideogram for mind, shin or kokoro, is defined as “The human heart is in the middle of the body.”

Mind as the faculty of thought – Japanese: I, Mano, Kokoro – Sanskrit: Manas, Manah
This is the faculty that makes us think we are who we are. At first sight, this term also corresponds to mind in its widest sense, but biased towards the intellect, intelligence, understanding, with also an undertone of will and intention. It is also the individual will to go on living, due to its inherent addiction to the ‘television screen of life’. It could be the catalogue of all human experience. Animals do learn words, but do not possess language to the extent of human beings. What mind as the faculty of thought cannot really understand is that the ‘television screen of life’ is only a reflection of mind as it is according to our karmic circumstances. Still, the impressions are funnelled in through the first six cognitions [which are 1) the cognition of sight, 2) the cognition of hearing, 3) the cognition of smell, 4) the cognition of taste, 5) the cognition of touch, and 6) the cognition of being aware of and conscious of these former five cognitions and also what goes on in the mind].

What this really amounts to is that what is perceived by these first six cognitions as well as mind as the faculty of thought is all that goes on in our lives. This faculty of thought is all that goes on in our lives. This faculty has a strong power of attaching itself to the result of its own thinking. It is constantly being aware of images, sounds, tastes, and so forth, even if they are only imagined. All of these induce the mind as the faculty of thought to presume to be the controller of the body, as well as being the part of us that makes decisions. This faculty also sees itself as independent by nature.

Mind as the faculty of thought is like one of those two-faced monsters from the realms of mythology. One face looks towards the six cognitions, and the other looks towards the cognition that is the storehouse of mind [Japanese: Zōshiki – Sanskrit: Alaya]. The faculty of thought does not know that the cognition that is the storehouse of mind is none other than mind, but we can always find some kind of faith to want to practise – a practice to dissipate our bewilderment and open our inherent Buddha nature and realise who we are.

In the Setsumon Geji, one of the oldest Chinese dictionaries, the ideogram i is defined as “The mind understands words and knows their intention.”

Muhengyō, the Bodhisattva – Japanese: Muhengyō Bosatsu [See also Four Great Bodhisattvas.]

Myōraku – Japanese: Myōraku Daishi – Chinese: Miao-lo Dashi
Referred to as the Universal Teacher Myōraku (Miao-lo), he was born in China in 711 CE and died in 782 CE and was the ninth patriarch of the Chinese Tendai School. When he was twenty years of age, he studied the teachings of the Tendai School under Genrō, the eighth patriarch. At thirty-eight, he took holy orders and fully studied the teachings of the Zen, Kegon, Shingon, and Hossō Schools of that period. When the Tendai School was on the verge of collapse, he refuted all the arguments of each and every school and established the view that the single vehicle of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) was the truth.

Nam myōhō renge kyō
The consecration and founding of one’s life on the Sutra on the White Lotus Flower-like Mechanism of the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō Renge Kyō). Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō – which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō) – is the basic chant of Nichiren Shōshū and is often referred to as daimoku or the title and theme. It is also one of the three universal esoteric Dharmas. Nichiren says the following about Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō in The Oral Transmission on the Meaning of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden): “Nam[u] is a Sanskrit word which, translated into classical Chinese, means ‘to consecrate and found one’s life on’. In the confines of the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) to which we consecrate and found our lives on, there is both the person and the Dharma. The person is Nichiren, who is the Shākyamuni submerged within the text. The Dharma is the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) for the final phase of the Dharma of Shākyamuni, which is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō and is the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon). This means that we consecrate and found our lives on the Universal Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) of the oneness of the person and the Dharma.

“Furthermore, ‘to consecrate’ implies that we turn our lives towards the intrinsicality of the real suchness that is immutable in essence and which belongs to the temporary gateway. ‘Our lives’ refers to a life founded in the wisdom of the real suchness as it is according to karmic circumstances and is a concept that belongs to the original gateway. This consecration and making it a foundation of our lives is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō [the consecration and founding of our lives (Nam[u]) on the Sutra on the White Lotus Flower-like Mechanism of the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō Renge Kyō)]. This is explained as the intrinsicality of the real suchness that is immutable in essence and the real suchness as it changes according to the circumstances. Again, ‘to consecrate’ has the meaning of our physical existence, and ‘our lives’ implies all that goes on in our minds. The inseparability of mind and materiality is the single superlative that is the utterly imponderable, underlying principle. This is also explained as ‘turning towards this single superlative because it is what is called the Buddha vehicle’.

“Moreover, ‘Nam[u]’ (Namas) of Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō is Sanskrit; Myōhō Renge Kyō is classical Chinese. It is said that Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō is at the same time both Sanskrit and Chinese. In Sanskrit, it is Saddharma Pundarţka Sūtram. Sat is Utterness [Myō], Dharma is the same in English and hō in Japanese; Pundarţka is the lotus flower [Renge], and Sūtram [Kyō] means sutra. The nine syllables of Saddharma Pundarţka Sūtram are the Buddha entity that is made up of nine World Honoured Ones which symbolise the nine dharma realms not being separate from the Buddha realm. Utterness [Myō] is the essence of the Dharma and dharmas [] are its unenlightenment. The single entity of unenlightenment and the Dharma essence is called the Utterness of the Dharma.

“The lotus flower [renge] is the two dharmas of cause and effect and is understood as cause and effect being a single interdependent entity. Sutra [kyō] is said to be all the speech, words, utterances, and voices of all sentient beings. This is explained as ‘when the voice becomes the transmission of the Buddha Dharma, it is called a sutra’. By being constant throughout the past, present, and future, it is called a sutra. The realm of the dharmas or the Dharma realm is the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō, Saddharma). The realm of the dharmas is the lotus flower. The realm of the dharmas is the sutra. The Lotus Flower is the Buddha entity of the Nine World Honoured Ones in the eight-petalled lotus. You must ponder over this thoroughly.”

Thus, Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] (Myōhō) permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō).

[See also Oral Transmission on the Significance of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden) [This translation has been slightly simplified by the author in the interests of accessibility.]

Namu – Japanese: Nam – Sanskrit: Namas
This is a Sino-Japanese phonetic rendering of the original Sanskrit word which has a number of meanings:
1. To consecrate one's life and found it on.
2. To take refuge in and worship.
3. To venerate and worship.
4. To respect and venerate.
5. To commit oneself to the meaning.
6. Save me.
7. Carry me over to the shores of Nirvana.
To serve and hold in veneration, to faithfully follow, and to commit oneself to the meaning, refer to mental karma. To take refuge in and worship, and to bow one’s head to the floor and worship, represent bodily karma. Save me and carry me to the shores of Nirvana refer to oral karma, whereas to consecrate one’s life and found it on refer to the three karmas of mind, body, and mouth. However, when Nichiren Kōmon Buddhists recite this word before Myōhō Renge Kyō it is always pronounced Nam, except when reciting the drawn-out title and theme when it is pronounced naaaamuu. [See also Nam myōhō renge kyō.]

Nevertheless, how the Daishōnin used and understood this word has deeper implications that go far beyond these meanings. In his Letter Concerning a Sack of White Rice, he writes, “Nam is an Indian word. In China and Japan, it means to consecrate and make something the foundation of one’s life. What we consecrate and found our lives on is the commitment of our lives and destinies to the Buddha.” In The Oral Transmission on the Meaning of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden), he extends his argument further: “Nam is a Sanskrit word, which translated into classical Chinese is kimyō, which means ‘to consecrate and found one’s life on’. In the confines of the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) in which we consecrate and found our lives, there is both the person and the Dharma. The person is Nichiren, who is the Shākyamuni submerged within the text. The Dharma is the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), which is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō and is the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon). This means that we consecrate and found our lives on the Universal Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) of the oneness of the person and the Dharma. Furthermore, ‘to consecrate’ implies that we turn our lives towards the intrinsicality of the real suchness that is immutable in essence and which belongs to the temporary gateway (zuien shinnyo no chi). ‘Our lives’ refer to a life founded in the wisdom of the real suchness as it is according to the changing circumstances and is a concept that belongs to the original gateway (fuhen shinnyo no ri). This consecration and making it a foundation of our lives is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō.”

Nichiren Daishōnin [1222-82 CE] [See also Introduction]

Nine Cognitions  [See also Cognition of Pure Mind]

Non-existence of self-nature, the – Japanese: mujishō
Each and every dharma (things) comes into being through cause, karmic circumstances, and affinity. There is no such thing as an inherent essence or an original nature.

One Buddha Vehicle, the – Japanese: ichijō
This vehicle is the only vehicle which is the Dharma that really leads people to become enlightened. In the Second Chapter on Expedient Means, in the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), it says, “That is why the Tathāgata uses only the one Buddha vehicle to expound the Dharma for sentient beings.” This term could also be paraphrased as the instructive Dharma that is the vehicle that transports people to the Buddha’s own environment. In the Second Chapter on Expedient Means, Shākyamuni cleared away the teachings for the three vehicles (those of the bodhisattvas, the people who are partially awakened due to the search for the meaning of life, and the hearers of the voice, all of whom were at the time doing separate practices), so as to reveal to them the real truth of the Buddha enlightenment. [See also Vehicle, Two vehicles, Three vehicles, Ten psychological realms of dharmas.]

One instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces, the – Japanese: Ichinen Sanzen
The whole of existence, the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō, Saddharma). In every instant of life or mind of all non-sentiency and sentient life, there is the whole of both subjective and objective existence. The “three thousand”, which originally was a concept of Indian origin, is a term used by the Tendai (T’ien T’ai) and Nichiren teachings to express the totality of life. To arrive at this number, one begins with the ten realms of dharma, which refer to subjectivity, determined by karma, which consists of ten categories of ways of being or possible moods – hell, hungry demons, animals, shura, human beings, deva, hearers of the voice, those who are partially enlightened due to a profound search for the meaning of life, bodhisattvas, Buddhas.

Each one of these ten realms contains the other nine in itself, so that there are a hundred realms in total. These hundred realms are conditioned by the ten ways in which all dharmas make themselves present to any of our six sense organs – appearance, nature, substance, strength, action, cause, karmic relation, fruition, requital, and the final superlative that is equally present in the other nine such qualities which are present in every instant of life. When these hundred realms are multiplied by the ten such qualities, the total becomes one thousand.

All these various subjective mental states and their various conditions due to the ten such qualities take place in three kinds of existential space. Firstly, there is the existential space of sentient beings. According to the fifth fascicle of Tendai’s (T’ien T’ai) Universal Desistance from Troublesome Worries in order to See Clearly (Maka Shikan), an existential space implies that there are other existential spaces which reveal the differences between beings in each of the ten realms from the Buddha realm to that of hell. Secondly, there is the existential space of the five aggregates, which are the reciprocal differences between our physical appearance, our perceptions, thoughts, volition, and ways of knowing. Thirdly, there is the existential space of abode and terrain, which may be understood as that whilst hellish beings live in hell, human beings inhabit the world of humankind. With these three kinds of existential space, the thousand subjective mental states become three thousand life conditions and their respective environments. Since existence cannot be separated from mind, this one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces is understood as being the Utterness of both animate and inanimate existence. It follows that nothing can exist outside it. [See also Ten psychological realms of the dharmas, Ten such qualities, Three kinds of existential space.]

Original Gateway, the – Japanese: Honmon
The Dharma gateway that reveals the original terrain of the Buddha. The opposite to the expression temporary gateway. The traditional metaphor explains the temporary gateway as being the reflection of the moon in the pond, whereas the original gateway is the moon itself. Tendai (T’ien T’ai), in the first fascicle of his Textual Explanation of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Hokke Mongu), divided the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) into the temporary gateway and the original gateway. The original gateway is the last fourteen chapters of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), beginning with the Fifteenth Chapter on the Bodhisattvas who Swarm up out of the Earth to the Twenty-eighth Chapter on the Persuasiveness and Quest [for Buddhahood] of the Bodhisattva Universally Worthy (Fugen, Samantabhadra). The main characteristic of the temporary gateway is its approximation to the one instant of thought containing three thousand kinds of existential space, which can only amount to the theoretical possibility of becoming a Buddha.

On the other hand, the original gateway clearly defines the original terrain of the Buddha, which is his original attainment in the primordial infinity. This implies that the Buddha realm is inherent in the ever-present infinite in time (kuon ganjo). Existence has always existed and will always exist. The Sixteenth Chapter on the Lifespan of the Tathāgata becomes the very essence of the original gateway, by destroying the notion of the gateway of the teachings derived from the external events of the Buddha Shākyamuni’s life and work and other provisional teachings that the Buddha was first enlightened in Buddhagaya in his historical lifetime. The original gateway indicates the cause, fruition, and abode of his attainment to the way of Buddhahood in the primordial distance of five hundred kalpas with all the dharmas in them ground into dust and thus establishes the grounds for the pragmatic one instant of thought containing three thousand kinds of existential space.

In the teaching of Nichiren, this astronomical figure of the primordial distance is the primordially infinite original beginning, which in present-day language is the ever-present infinite in time (kuon ganjo). This concept is inherent in Nichiren’s Treatise on the Utterness of the Original Cause as the one and only original gateway. The teachings that are called the meritorious virtues, which are based on a literal understanding of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) as well as the teachings derived from the external events of the Buddha Shākyamuni’s life and work and original gateways, are taken to be the provisional gateway. But the teaching of the Sixteenth Chapter on the Lifespan of the Tathāgata of the doctrine of the Buddha seeds being implanted in the primordial infinity is the one and only original gateway. [See also Real Teachings, the.]

Primordial infinity – Japanese: Ku.on [See also Primordially infinite original beginning.]

Primordially infinite original beginning, the – Japanese: ku.on ganjō
The ever-present infinite in time (kuon ganjo). Since existence has always existed, there can be no primordially infinite, original beginning. Instead, the equation that covers the whole of existence is arrived at by reciting the theme and title, Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which is to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō). This title and theme can be applied to any existing theory of how existence works.

Provisional Teachings, the
The Provisional Teachings were throughout the lifetime of Shākyamuni (the historical Buddha) that were taught in a way so as to entice people to the Buddha teaching and away from various Brahmanical doctrines. This is clearly stated at the beginning of the Collation of the Layers of the Various Teachings of all the Buddhas of the Past, Present and Future as to Which Specific Doctrines are to be Discarded or Established. In these teachings prior to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), usually the intrinsic quality of all dharmas both sentient and non-sentient was relativity (). Humankind had to await the arrival of Nichiren Daishōnin to understand that the essence of all dharmas is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō). This theme and title (daimoku) encompasses in the teaching all subjective existence and every possible objectiveness. On the other hand, relativity () in the teaching of Shākyamuni is closer to a theoretical concept, whereas in the teaching of Nichiren the title and theme, Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, entails the workings of the whole of existence.

Pure Land School, the – Japanese: Jōdoshū
The name of this school has also been translated as the Immaculate Terrain school. Essentially the teaching of this school is based on Nāgārjuna's (Ryūju) principle of the easy road to Nirvana. This school was established by Hōnen, who first taught its doctrine in 1175 CE. He underlined the need for faith and the continual repetition of the incantation, Namu Amida Butsu. This formula is often referred to as the Nembutsu. At the time of Nichiren, this school had become very popular, and its teaching still survives today in a somewhat folkloric state, for funerals only.

Real aspect, the – Japanese: Jissō
The actuality of something – its Dharma nature, its suchness, its essential truth or unchangeable intrinsicality. The real aspect of all dharmas (things) is revealed in the Second Chapter on Expedient Means of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). In the eighth fascicle of the Recondite Significance of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Hokke Gengi), it is written, “Whatever is done by thought, word, or deed is transient. All dharmas are devoid of ego and are the silent stillness of Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō.” These three definitions are seen as the three tokens of proof of the universal vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna). However, in the teaching of Nichiren, everything that exists has only one fundamental “isness” which is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō. [See also Nam myōhō renge kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō).] This of course implies the mutual possession of the three thousand existential spaces that make up an instant of thought. [See also One instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces.]

Realm of the dharmas, the – Japanese: Hokkai
The name for everything in general – noumenal or phenomenal and bridging the whole of existence. [See also Nam myōhō renge kyō.]

Real Teachings, the – Japanese: Honmon
The section on the original Buddha, which is the latter half of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō, Saddharma Pundarţka Sūtram). In A Collation of the Layers of the Various Teachings of all the Buddhas of the Past, Present and Future as to Which Specific Doctrines are to be Discarded or Established (Sō Kan Mon Shō), we have the following paragraph: “In the Explanatory Notes on the Recondite Significance of the Dharma Flower, Myōraku states, ‘The provisional teachings were taught for the propensities of the people who are trapped in the first nine realms of dharmas, but it was the real teachings that revealed the Dharma realm of the Buddha, which is the ultimate truth.’”

Relativity – Japanese: – Sanskrit: Shūnyatā
This concept is often translated as “the void” or “nothingness”, but perhaps the definition of “relativity” which quite a number of Japanese dictionaries use is nearer to the mark. In the teaching of Nichiren, relativity is the underlying nature of the whole of existence. On the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon), it is represented in the centre by the Nam[u] Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō).

Essentially, it is the implication of the one instant of mind containing three thousand existential spaces, in terms of the ten ways in which dharmas make themselves present to any of our six senses. Since we are all unenlightened, we are unable to perceive the fundamental basis of existence, which is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō and means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō). This is the empty space beyond any of our physical perceptions.

Ritsu School, the – Japanese: Risshū
This is one of the Ten Schools mentioned in the Treatise on Questions and Answers Concerning the Fundamental Object of Veneration. The doctrine of this school is based upon the rules and disciplines for monks and nuns of the universal vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna). The concept was that if the practitioners followed these rules they would be on the way to enlightenment. This school was founded by Dōsen (Tao-HsŘan) of the Tang dynasty and brought to Japan by Ganjin in 754 CE.

Samādhi – Japanese: Sanmai
This word is in the Oxford Dictionary, and its meaning is less difficult than it appears. Until now, this word has in the Nichiren Daishōnin Reader been translated as “the perfect absorption of the mind into the one object of meditation”. There is no difference whatsoever between this periphrastic definition and the word samādhi. Some Chinese dictionaries explain this term as “When we are giving our wholehearted attention to something we are doing, it is a samādhi, but not necessarily a dhyana.” [See also Dhyāna.]

Sanron school, the – Japanese: Sanronshū
Sanron literally means the three discourses, which are fundamental to this school. These teachings were brought to China by the great translator Kumārajīva. Essentially its doctrine is the middle way. While denying the reality of phenomenal and noumenal existence, it aimed at the reality of a Buddha awakening that is beyond our conception and thus barely avoided the pitfall of nihilism.

Self-nature – Japanese: Jishō
The unchangeable and inherent quality in all life and all dharmas (things). It is also translated as the essential or inherent property or the inner nature. However, in the first fascicle of the Treatise on the Middle Way, Nāgārjuna (Ryūju) explains, “All causes and affinities do not arise out of self-nature, but from the non-existence of self-nature.” Self-nature can be explained by Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō). [See also Treatise on the Whole being Contained in the One Instant of Mind, Non-existence of self-nature.]

Shākyamuni – Japanese: Shakason
The historical Buddha. Shakason literally means the honoured one of the family of Shakyas, and Shākyamuni means the sage of the Shakyas. After five hundred or five hundred fifty previous incarnations, Shākyamuni finally attained to becoming a bodhisattva and was born in the Tusita heaven. He descended as a white elephant through the right side of his mother, Queen Maya. Simpler statements say that he was born the son of King Suddhodana. Later he was married to Yashodhara, who bore him a son, Rahula (Ragora). He left the royal palace at the age of nineteen to search for the truth, and, at the age of thirty or thirty-five, he realised that the way of release from the suffering of the endless cycle of birth and death lay, not in asceticism, but by purifying oneself morally and thereby erasing past karmas. He became known as the Buddha. He is said to have died in 486 BCE. The sutras mention many Buddhas and all are considered to be emanations of Shākyamuni. However, in the writings of Nichiren Daishōnin, the name Shākyamuni often refers to the original Buddha of the Chapter on the Lifespan of the Tathāgata. Nichiren is the manifestation of this Buddha in particular.

Shōan – Chinese: Chang-an
The legitimate successor to Tendai (T’ien T’ai), he committed Tendai’s (T’ien T’ai) lectures and sermons to writing, which were later put together as the Recondite Significance of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Hokke Gengi), the Textual Explanations of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Hokke Mongu), and the Universal Desistance from Troublesome Worries in order to See Clearly (Maka Shikan). He also wrote commentaries on the Nirvana Sutra.

Six Inseparabilities – Japanese: Rokusoku
These are, according to the Tendai School, six stages of bodhisattva development:
1. The inseparability of the Buddha nature from reasoning. This is the logical concept of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces and that therefore all beings and all things can open their inherent Buddha realm.
2. The inseparability of the Buddha nature from the title and theme and their ideograms. This implies that the apprehension of Buddhist terms and those who have faith in them are on their way to becoming Buddhas.
3. The inseparability of the Buddha nature from contemplation and practise. This is an advance beyond terminology to earnest study and doing the corresponding practises.
4. The inseparability of the Buddha nature from similitude. This is the stage of semblance to purity and also that of experiencing the benefits of practise.
5. The inseparability of the Buddha nature from the discrimination of the truth. This is the ability to perceive all beings, all events, and all things in the light of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces.
6. The inseparability of the Buddha nature from the final superlative. This is the stage of having become utterly awakened.

The Daishōnin defines the six inseparabilities, in the first article of the second part of The Oral Transmission on the Meaning of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden), as follows: “When it comes to setting up the allocations for the six inseparabilities, then the Tathāgata of this chapter is the common mortal of the inseparability of reasoning.”

The respectful acceptance of Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō in our minds becomes the inseparability of the name and ideograms. This is because it is when we first begin to hear the title and theme. Hearing and reciting it is the inseparability of contemplation and practice. This inseparability of contemplation and practice is to contemplate the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon) of the pragmatic one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces. Therefore, the restraint of delusive thinking that brings about delusions is said to be the inseparability of similitude. Setting out to convert others is seen as the inseparability of discrimination of the truth. Becoming a Buddha of the triple body independent of all action is said to be the inseparability of the final superlative. Broadly speaking, the repression of delusions is not the highest point of the Sixteenth Chapter on the Lifespan of the Tathāgata. But the ultimate principle of this chapter is to be able to know the fundamentally existing actual fundamental substance of the common mortal just as it is.

Spaceless Void – Japanese: Kokū
The vacuity that contains the whole of existence, space, and time and is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō).

Spirit Vulture Peak, the – Japanese: Ryōjusen – Sanskrit: Grdhrakūta
The present-day Giddore, a mountain located in the north east of Rajagriha, the capital of Maghadha in ancient India. As far as the teachings of Nichiren Daishōnin are concerned, this is where Shākyamuni expounded the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). The Spirit Vulture Peak is often used as an analogy for the Buddha realm and also the Buddha enlightenment.

Stupa – Japanese:
A stupa was originally a tumulus or a mound for the remains of the dead. Later, with the advent of the Buddha Teaching, a stupa was thought of more as a reliquary for the remains of a Buddha or relics of his mind, such as sutras, etc. Since our own bodies are supposed to be made up of 84,000 particles, King Ashoka is said to have built 84,000 stupas for the preservation of remains of Shākyamuni. In a later development, the stupa became known as a pagoda, in China, Korea, and Japan.

However, as far as the teachings of the universal vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna) are concerned, a stupa is seen as a representation of the Buddha and his Dharma realm. The proportions of this development correspond to those of the halos of the Buddha images, but put into three dimensions. In the esoteric schools, this is the concept of a stupa being a schematic representation of the elements of the universe, in terms of a sequence of geometric symbols. Starting at the bottom, there is a yellow square, which stands for earth. This is surmounted by a black circular disc, which symbolises water, which again has a red triangle on top of it representing fire. On top of this triangle is a white crescent moon, with its corners pointing upwards like horns, representing wind. And on top and in the centre of this moon there is a pale blue pear shape that represents relativity ().

However, in the teachings of Nichiren, a stupa is also conceived as being the Dharma realm, in the sense of being its Utterness (Myō). This is not separate from Nichiren’s vision of the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon). . [See also A Letter to Lay Practitioner Abutsu, Treatises on the Fundamental Object of Veneration for Contemplating the Mind Instigated by the Bodhisattva Superior Practice (Jōgyō, Vishishtachāritra) For the Fifth Five Hundred Year Period After the Tathāgata’s Passing over to Nirvana.]

Stupa made of Precious Materials – Japanese: Hōtō
This stupa is recounted in the Eleventh Chapter on Seeing the Vision of the Stupa made of Precious Materials of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) as being adorned with the seven treasures of gold, silver, lapis lazuli, coral, agate, pearl, and ruby. Nichiren, in The Oral Transmission on the Meaning of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden), describes these precious substances as seven kinds of essential dharmic wealth needed for practising the Buddha Path. In the Eleventh Chapter of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), this stupa surged up from the earth, and its enormous size was five hundred yojanas high and two hundred fifty yojanas wide. A yojana is thought to be one day’s march for the army. There is some suggestion that the distance covered before unyoking the oxen may have limited this. No doubt the enormity of this stupa has the significance of being as large as life itself.

The inside of the stupa contained the whole of the Buddha Tahō and his Precious and Pure Realm of Dharmas. The Buddha Tahō is understood as the objective realm of the Buddha Shākyamuni, and when these two Buddhas are seen seated side by side in the stupa made of precious materials, this immediately becomes the concept of the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon). Nichiren says, “What is precious are the five aggregates, and the stupa is to put them together harmoniously. When the five aggregates are put together harmoniously, they become a precious stupa. And the five aggregates harmoniously compiled are said to be seen as the five ideograms of the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō, Saddharma).” In his A Letter to the Lay Practitioner Abutsu, Nichiren writes, “Now that we have entered into the final phase of the Dharma, there is no stupa made of precious materials apart from the aspect of the men and women who hold to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō).” [See also Five aggregates, Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas, A Letter to the Lay Practitioner Abutsu.]

Subjectivity and its dependent environment are not two – Japanese: Eshō funi
What we see ourselves to be is subjective. And for this subjectivity to exist, it requires a dependent environment. Buddhism teaches that oneself – or rather, what we think we are – and our environment are inseparable, since both are the Sutra on the White Lotus Flower-like Mechanism of the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō Renge Kyō). [See also Nam myōhō renge kyō.]

Sutra – Japanese: Kyō
Scriptures which convey the Buddha teaching. Every sutra begins with the words, “I heard it in this way.” The Chinese ideogram kyō, which is used to translate sutra, also has the meaning of “the warp in weaving” that runs lengthways, to pass through or by, and “canonical texts” or “classics”, thus implying the concept of an eternal doctrine. [See also Oral Transmission on the Significance of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden) , Nam myōhō renge kyō.]

Tahō, the Buddha – Japanese: Tahō Nyorai – Sanskrit: Prabhūtaratna
Translated, this means “abundant treasure” or “many jewels”. The ancient Buddha who, after a long period in Nirvana, appeared inside the Stupa made of Precious Materials at the Ceremony in Empty Space, in order to testify to the truth of the teachings of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). Due to his presence he reveals, among other things, that nirvana is not annihilation and that the teaching of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) is the highest order of understanding. In the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon), the Buddha Tahō represents the totally enlightened objective realm, materiality, and the function of dying of the original Buddha, whereas Shākyamuni represents the totally enlightened wisdom, mind, and being alive. [See also Stupa made of Precious Materials, Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas.]

Tathāgata – Japanese: Nyorai
One who has gone; one who has followed the Path and arrived at the real suchness; one of the ten titles of a Buddha. Tathāgata can be explained as a person who comes from the real suchness of existence, which is Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō – which means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō) – and that person will return to it.

Tathāgata of Universal Sunlight, the – Japanese: Dainichi Nyorai – Sanskrit: Mahāvairocana-Tathāgata
The Buddha who expounded the esoteric doctrine of the Buddha teaching. According to the teachings of the Tantra or Shingon School, all other Buddhas and bodhisattvas are born of the Tathāgata of Universal Sunlight, and he is also seen as an idealisation of the truth.

Tathāgata Universally Pervading Superlative Wisdom, the – Japanese: Daitsūchishō – Sanskrit: Mahābhijnāj˝ānābhibhu
His name is often shortened to Daitsū. He is a Buddha who, in the Seventh Chapter on the Parable of the Imaginary City in the Dharma Flower Sutra, is said to have first expounded this sutra three thousand kalpas of universes ground into ink ago. [See also Daitsū Buddha.]

Teachings derived from the external events of Shākyamuni’s life and work Gateway – Japanese: Shakumon
This gateway to the Dharma is the first half of the twenty-eight chapters of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō). It consists of the fourteen chapters from the First and Introductory Chapter to the Fourteenth Chapter on the Practising in Peace and with Joy. The opposite of this technical term is the original gateway. The Chinese ideogram that is used for “temporary” has a flavour of transience, as opposed to the concept of an original substance. In Buddhist teachings, there is the traditional metaphor of the moon being the fundamental substance and the actual reality and therefore belonging to the original gateway, but its reflection in the pond only being a reflected likeness, which is suspended in space and time and is similar to the teachings derived from the external events of Shākyamuni’s life and work (temporary) gateway.

The Buddha who became enlightened for the first time under the bodhi tree in India is not the original Buddha, but one who is suspended in temporariness. All the teachings and sutras he expounded are defined as the temporary gateway. The first part of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) is understood as being the temporary gateway, because, in the Second Chapter on Expedient Means, Shākyamuni expounded the real aspect of all dharmas as the ten realms of dharmas. Each one of these ten realms contains the other nine in itself so that there are one hundred realms of dharmas in total. These in turn are qualified by the ten ways in which dharmas make themselves present to any of our six sense organs – eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, and mind – but without any indication whatsoever as to where these oscillations of the mind occur. These thousand ways in which dharmas make themselves present are groundless, incomplete, subjective, and therefore theoretical.

It is when we come to the Sixteenth Chapter on the Lifespan of the Tathāgata that we have an account for the three kinds of existential space, which give a groundwork on which the thousand such qualities can happen in reality. This concept of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces also includes the idea of subjectivity and its dependent environments not being two, which is the reality of life as we live it. [See also Ten psychological realms of dharmas, Ten such qualities, Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas, Treatise on the Fundamental Object of Veneration for Contemplating the Mind Instigated by the Bodhisattva Superior Practice (Jōgyō, Vishishtachāritra) For the Fifth Five Hundred Year Period After the Tathāgata’s Passing over to Nirvana.]

Temporary Buddha – Japanese: Shakubutsu
A Buddha who is suspended in time and space, as opposed to the original Buddha.

Temporary Teaching – [See Provisional Teachings, the.]

Ten psychological realms of the dharmas, the – Japanese: Jippōkai
In the Buddha teaching prior to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), the ten realms of the dharmas were thought of as the environment, determined by karma of ten kinds of sentient being who, in some cases, shared the same terrain as human beings did with animals, although each was set apart from the other. In the doctrines of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) and Nichiren, we ourselves are furnished with each of the ten realms as ten archetypal states of mind. The ten realms are the following:
1. Hell (jigokukai), which includes every possible kind of suffering and is a realm of the mind from which no sentient being is spared.
2. Hungry demons (gakikai) in many teachings are conceived of as ghosts who dwell in a purgatorial state, hankering after sex, food, drink, and other such things that are coveted. In traditional Buddhist iconography, these beings are depicted as having long thin necks and crawling on the ground. They are always hungry and seek a hardly attainable desire. In the teaching of the Daishōnin, these beings symbolise our own hunger, thirst, and all our other wants, such as drug addicts in need of a fix or alcoholics in the skid rows of cities. From a positive viewpoint, the perpetual nature of such a desire enables one to defend and protect the life within us. It is acceptable to express a need for food, money, and all the other necessities for human existence. But when this realm becomes distorted, the baser elements become apparent.
3. Animality (chikushokai) in some Buddhist teachings means being born as an animal, with functions entirely guided by instinct. In the teachings of Nichiren, this realm is part of the human condition that is the “naked ape” – our animal qualities, defects, and tendencies.
4. The shura (shurakai), originally in Brahmanism and Hinduism, were titan-like beings continually vying with the deva for superiority. In the teaching of Nichiren, this dharma realm corresponds to wanting to have power over someone, or anger which might be seen as a demonstration of ferocity in order to have power over the person with whom we are at odds. From a more positive standpoint, this Ashura realm is the mental and physical space that we need in order to “breathe”. Infringement on that space results in anger. In the Treatise on the Fundamental Object of Veneration for Contemplating the Mind [Instigated by the Bodhisattva Superior Practice (Jōgyō, Vishishtachāritra) For the Fifth Five Hundred Year Period After the Tathāgata’s Passing over to Nirvana], the Ashura realm has the connotation of wheedling, cajoling, or using persuasive means.
5. Humanity (ninkai). In spite of troubles and inner torments, there is a part of us that reassures us that things are not as bad as they appear and that one is “all right”. It is a human mechanism to find tranquillity or an ability to be calm in spite of all. In the teachings prior to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), the realm of humanity meant being born as a human being.
6. Deva (tenkai). In Brahmanism and Hinduism, deva are the gods. They are often described as living in heaven and in palaces, are said to have golden bodies, superhuman powers, and to have extremely long lives filled with joy and ecstasy. But, like all other beings, their lifespans must come to an end. From the Buddhist point of view, however, many deva are seen as the protectors of the Buddha teaching. Nevertheless, in the teaching of Nichiren, the deva is an archetype, inherent in the mind that corresponds to our ecstasy, our greatest raptures, and supreme delights. However wonderful those raptures may be, sooner or later there is a compulsion to return to our respective realities. The deva realm points to the transience of our joys, as opposed to real happiness.
7. The hearers of the voice is a literal translation of the Sino-Japanese Buddhist term (shōmonkai) which means those who listen to, or have heard, the voice of the Buddha. It also has an undertone of those who seek meaning in their lives. Seen as a state of mind, this is the realm of learning and wanting to find out. This process starts in early childhood with continual questions, in the form of “what is...?” and “why?” This attitude can continue into old age as a lifelong search for truth.
8. Being partially awakened by a search for the meaning of life (engakukai, pratyekabuddha). In contrast to the desire for wisdom and knowledge, there is a part of us that knows the leaves will fall in autumn – knows that there is a body of knowledge upon which one can build. This realm encompasses those who have understood something of the essence of life but not all of its secrets. In the teachings prior to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), the people who were awakened by affinities had become partially enlightened by personal endeavour and consequently rather more for themselves than for the benefit of others.
9. Bodhisattva (bosatsukai). In the teachings that came before the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), this realm indicated persons who seek enlightenment not only for themselves but also for the salvation of others. In the teaching of Nichiren, bodhisattvas, especially in the sense of Bodhisattvas who swarm up out of the earth, are seen as people who not only practise for themselves but seek to set others on the Path of the Buddha teaching as well. At another level, the bodhisattva realm is that part of us which wants to do something for the benefit of others. Essentially, it is our altruistic nature.
10. The Buddha realm (bukkai) differs from the previous nine realms, which are all within the bounds of our own experiences, in that it is more elusive, less tangible. From the Buddha teaching of Nichiren, however, if one steadfastly pursues fully the practice of the Nichiren Kōmon School, it is possible to attain a depth of perception and unshakeable happiness.

The unhappiest realm of dharmas is hell (jigokukai) and the suffering of its denizens. This includes all suffering, either physical or mental. Suffering begins at the stage of a thorn in your little finger, feeling the lash of pain caused by words that hurt, the pain of broken relationships, illness, injuries, and loneliness, also including the horrors of war and the almost unimaginable dimension of the perpetrators and victims of things that happened during the second World War, as well as the current bloodshed in Africa and the Middle East. Hell is also hate.

Each one of us has suffered, in some way or another. From a more conventional and stereotypical Buddhist point of view, there are, according to various teachings of the individual vehicle (shōjō, hīnayāna) or the universal vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna), eight hot hells and eight cold hells, which are situated under the world of humankind. Usually, the descriptions of these hells depict them as medieval and sadistic. In their iconographic way, these portrayals are far removed from the real pain, suffering, and mental anguish that many people experience. Among the objectives of the teachings of Nichiren, one of them is to lead people away from such torments and to bring about their happiness and inner realisation.

The second of these ten [psychological] realms of dharmas is the dimension of hungry demons. In the Buddha teaching of Shākyamuni, these hungry demons are seen more like ghosts who live in a purgatorial state which some people say is under the ground. It is their sad destiny that they are condemned to continually hanker after food, sex, drink, drugs, and other things. It is documented that there are 39 classes of these unfortunate creatures.

This dimension is the second of the three lower karmic destinations. In traditional Buddhist iconography, these beings are depicted as having long, thin necks with swollen bellies that force them to crawl on the ground. There are also a number of Japanese paintings of the Edo period, depicting hungry ghosts hanging around the more sordid and seedy establishments of the red-light districts. The present-day visualisation would be closer to heroin addicts in need of a fix, or alcoholic derelicts haunted by their thirst, or the tobacco smoker who cannot do without a cigarette. This is the part of us that craves or wants and “must have”, in order to continue. From a positive view, the perpetual need for food, nourishment, money, etc., is the mechanism to defend the life within us, in order to do the things that make life worth living. Again, like all the other realms of dharmas, the mental state of the hungry demon is also endowed with all the other ten realms of dharmas.

In the teachings prior to those of Nichiren, the realm of dharmas of animality (chikushōkai) signified being born as an animal, even though there must be psychic entities that can only be incarnated in the animal world, such as those beings who were also animals in their former lives. One of the concepts of animality is a sentient being who is motivated by animal instincts and territorialities. Since we humans have also been described by some people as “hairless apes”, then perhaps we can recognise that our animal qualities are not only limited to eating, defecation, and sex but are also partly responsible for our class systems, hierarchies, and feudalism in the office or other workplaces. However, to be born with a human body gives us the opportunity to open up our minds, so that we can understand what our existences are all about.

The shura (ashura) in the Brahmanic and Vedic mythology were originally titanesque beings, who were always vying with the deva (ten or shoten zenjin) for superiority. Traditionally, they were defined as “ugly”, “not deva”, and “without wings”. There were four categories of these beings that depended on the manner of their birth, which means whether they were born from eggs, or from a womb, or born by transformation, or as spawn in the water. Their habitat was the ocean, which only came up to their knees; but other less powerful shura (ashura) lived in mountain caves in the west.

In popular iconography, the kings of the shura (ashura) were represented with three or four faces and had either four or six arms. They also had palaces and realms similar to the deva (ten). In the teaching of Nichiren, this realm of dharmas corresponds to the psychological mechanism of wanting to be the centre of attention, to be noticed by others, and the desire to control. Often, when these tendencies are frustrated, they easily turn into anger, rage, and jealousy. In simpler terms, it has a lot to do with our being pretentious or a show-off. In the Treatise on the Fundamental Object of Veneration for Contemplating the Mind, Nichiren mentions cajolery, wheedling, and “buttering up” as part of this dimension. In a more positive sense, this is the part of us that says that we need our own space, which enables us to mentally and physically carry on living, in other words, all that our egos need.

The realm of dharmas of humanity (jinkai) is the sense of human equanimity and rationality. In spite of all the troublesome worries (bonnō, klesha) that plague our lives, there is a part that reassures us that things are not as bad as they seem and that everything is all right. It is this aspect of our personalities that gets on with daily living without too many upsets, in other words, a satisfactory life. In the Buddha teaching of Shākyamuni, the realms of dharmas of humanity meant to be born as a human being.

From the viewpoint of the teaching of Shākyamuni, the realms of dharmas of the deva (tenkai) refer mainly to the merits of the divinities of Brahmanism and other Vedic teachings. The deva (ten) were said to have golden bodies, superhuman powers, and extremely long lives filled with joy and ecstasy; but like all other lifespans, at some time or another, they must come to an end. Many deva (ten) are the protectors of the Buddha teaching. According to Nichiren’s writing on Securing the Peace of the Realm through the Establishment of the Correct Dharma (Risshō Ankoku ron), one concludes that the deva (ten) protect human interests and that they are also nourished by religious rites, especially by the recitation of the title and theme (daimoku), Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō. There are many cultures with legends and mythologies concerning this kind of sentient being that would fit into the category of deva (ten), for example, elves, guardian spirits, local gods, saints, angels, and ancestral divinities. There are a number of deva (ten) whose names are important to the Buddha teaching of Nichiren Daishōnin and are inscribed on the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon).

One might ask if these tutelary essences could be archaic, archetypal elements in the depths of our psyches that have an influence over our lives in one way or another. When we create so much bad karma by doing things that are wrong, these archetypes can no longer take part in what we do. Then these deva (ten) may no longer make their presences felt, thus allowing more destructive energies to take their place. For anyone who has practised the rites of the teachings of Nichiren Daishōnin, we can only be aware of forces that in some way guide our lives, often in the most unexpected way.

What I have just said about the deva (ten) is based on personal intuition. However, someone might ask the question, “What are the deva (ten)?” I thought an allusion to their existence might be food for conjecture.

Deva (ten) have extremely happy and ecstatic long lives that eventually must come to an end, in a protractedly distant future. The concept of the realms of dharmas of the deva (ten) in the teaching of Nichiren refers to our joys and epiphanies, like falling in love, getting the right job, a great night out, or the enjoyment of doing something useful or creative. Nonetheless, however exhilarating or joyful our experiences may be, we are always sooner or later compelled to return to the starker dimension of normal realities of daily living. The realms of dharmas of the deva (ten) refer to the impermanence of all our joys, raptures, and delights.

Next we have the realms of dharmas of the people who listen to the Buddha’s voice, which is a literal translation of the Chinese ideograms. In the teaching of Nichiren, it refers to the dimension within us that wants to be informed, the desire for intellectual pursuits, or just wanting knowledge. This is the part of us that is the inquirer and the part of us where learning is still a work in progress. This concept is applicable to the intellectuals of the present day.

Historically speaking, during the time of Shākyamuni, these were the people who exerted themselves to attain the highest stage of the individual vehicle (shōjō, hīnayāna), through listening to the Buddha. [Here I use the term “individual vehicle”, because these teachings were for individual enlightenment. We can say that these people were only practising for themselves, as opposed to the practices of the universal vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna), which was an exposition of the Dharma for the people who were prepared to practise not only for the benefit of themselves, but for others as well (bosatsu, bodhisattvas).]

Later, the expression shōmon was used to designate people who understood the four noble truths – 1) suffering is a necessary aspect of sentient existence; 2) the accumulation of suffering is brought about by our lusts and our attachments to them; 3) the extinction of such suffering is possible; and 4) the teaching of the Buddha path leads to the elimination of such lusts and attachments. These people practised with all their might to become arhats or arakan, which is an inner realisation of existence being nirvana or relativity (, shūnyatā). The object of the teaching of Nichiren, as I have said earlier, is to open up our inherent Buddha nature with our persons just as they are, which is not only within our grasp but is also a path towards a real fulfilment and realisation.

The realm of dharmas of the people who are partially enlightened due to a profound search for the meaning of existence (engaku, hyakushibutsu, pratyekabuddha), is a psychological dimension that is contrasted with the search for understanding and wanting to know the how and why of their circumstances. This realm of dharmas involves those people who have a deep understanding of what life entails but not all its secrets.

This kind of mental state is not only concerned with people who follow the various teachings of the Buddha, but also many scientists, writers, artists, musicians, and other people, who try and have tried to follow an enlightened existence, fall into this category.

However, from a historical Buddhist viewpoint, these partially enlightened individuals were those who fully understood the links in the chain of the twelve causes and karmic circumstances that run through the whole of sentient existence. [These are 1) a fundamental unenlightenment, which is brought about by 2) natural causes and inclinations inherited from former lives, 3) the first consciousness after conception that takes place in the womb, 4) both body and mind evolving in the womb, which leads to 5) the five organs of sense and the functioning of the mind, 6) contact with the outside world, 7) as well as the growth of receptivity or budding intelligence and discernment from the age of six to seven onwards, 8) the desire for amorous love at the age of puberty, and 9) the urge for a sensuous existence, that forms 10) the substance for future karma, and 11) the completed karma ready to be born again, that faces in the direction of 12) old age and death.]

Nevertheless, the Buddha Shākyamuni saw people of the realm of dharmas who were partially enlightened due to a profound search for the meaning of existence (engaku, hyakushibutsu, pratyekabuddha) as essentially seekers of enlightenment for themselves.

The realm of dharmas of the bodhisattva (bosatsukai) is the ninth of these ten realms of dharmas. Basically, this term bodhisattva is derived from two Sanskrit words, 1) bodhi which means knowledge, understanding, perfect wisdom, or enlightenment, and 2) sattva which has the sense of being, existence, life, consciousness, or any living sentient being. While this concept is not entirely foreign to the teachings of the individual vehicle (shōjō, hinayāna), it was used almost exclusively to designate Shākyamuni in his former existences. In tales concerning the former lives of the Buddha, he is often referred to as the Bodhisattva.

According to the earlier teachings of the universal vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna), this expression referred to any person whose resolve was to attain enlightenment, which in Chinese texts was understood as “a sentient being with a mind for the universal truth”. Later, the term bodhisattva (bosatsukai) was used for people with an awareness that was all-embracing.

In the teachings of the universal vehicle, the people who listened to the Buddha’s discourses (shōmon, shrāvaka) and those people who were partially enlightened due to a profound search for the meaning of existence (engaku, hyakushibutsu, pratyekabuddha) only made endeavours for their own enlightenment, whereas the bodhisattva aimed at the illumination and the realisation of others. Roughly speaking, this realm of dharmas designates the desire to seek one’s own enlightenment, and at the same time, have the compassion to strive for the happiness of others.

The tenth of the realms of dharmas is that of the Buddha enlightenment. To describe this psychological dimension is the most difficult, since such an enlightenment is beyond any of my personal experiences. This realm of the Dharma is the oneness of existence as perceived by the Buddha. This perception of the singularity of the Dharma is understood as one of total freedom and a consciousness of the ultimate truth.

The Dharma Flower Sutra (Hokke-kyō) makes it clear that the Dharma Realm of the Buddha is inherent in the lives of all sentient beings. As an experience, this dimension is probably the clear light that is often seen by people in near-death states, which in The Tibetan Book of the Dead (Bardo thos sgrol) is described as “the point of entering the intermediary state between dying and rebirth” (hchi khahi bar do).

In the teaching of Nichiren, this is pointed out as “the silence and the shining light” that is in fact the fundamental nature of life itself, which also accompanies us through our respective deaths. It might be possible to define the Dharma realm of the Buddha (bukkai) as life and all that Myōhō Renge Kyō implies.

In the concept of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces, each one of these realms is furnished with the other nine, so that in fact there are one hundred dharma realms which in turn are modified by the ten such qualities. [See also Buddha, One instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces, Treatise on the Fundamental Object of Veneration for Contemplating the Mind Instigated by the Bodhisattva Superior Practice (Jōgyō, Vishishtachāritra) For the Fifth Five Hundred Year Period After the Tathāgata’s Passing over to Nirvana, Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas, Bodhisattvas who swarm up from the earth.]

Ten realms, the – Japanese: Jikkai [See: Ten psychological realms of the dharmas.]

Ten ways in which dharmas make themselves present to any of our six senses – eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, and mind, the (or ten such qualities) – Japanese: Jū.nyōze
The ten qualities of suchness are, according to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), the essential qualities that are present in everything that exists – a lateral and objective view of all dharmas, as well as playing a vital role in the teaching of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces.
The ten qualities of suchness are:
1. Such an appearance (nyoze sō) – sentient beings, objects, and things in the mind made manifest.
2. Such a nature (nyoze shō) – of anything we can perceive including sentient beings.
3. Such a substance (nyoze tai) – the fundamental substance or reality.
4. Such a strength (nyoze riki) – intensity or potential.
5. Such an action (nyoze sa) – functioning, the outward manifestation of the strength or potential.
6. Such a cause (nyoze in) – the direct cause that brings about the fruition or result
7. Such a karmic relationship (nyoze en) – the concomitance, complementary causes, and circumstances that accompany the direct cause.
8. Such a fruition (nyoze ka) – the result which is brought about by the direct cause.
9. Such a requital (nyoze hō) – the total outcome of that which is brought about by such a fruition, due to karma.
10. Such a final superlative which is equally present from the first to the last of these nine qualities of suchness (nyōze hon makku kyō tō) – the real aspect of the middle way.
These ten qualities of suchness are present in the hundred dharma realms, which in the doctrine of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces bring the number to one thousand. This is seen as a theory that covers most possible combinations of sentient existence. This teaching was first revealed in the Second Chapter on Expedient Means of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) and is referred to as “roughly clearing away the three vehicles in order to reveal the one”.

In the Second Chapter on Expedient Means in the first fascicle of the Dharma Flower Sutra, it says, “The real aspect of all dharmas can only be exhaustively scrutinised between one Buddha and another. This real aspect of all dharmas is said to be (Sho’i shohō) in any way they make themselves present to any of our six sense organs – eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, and mind (Nyoze sō [ke]). [For instance, a carrot is orange; it tastes sweetish and may have a smell.] Next are their various inner qualities (Nyoze shō []). [These include all the words associated with a carrot, i.e., zanahoria, carotte, carota, ninjin, and all our memories of a carrot; when we see this carrot, we unconsciously see a carrot, and both what we see and the associations in our heads automatically come together.] Then there is the substance or what they really are (Nyoze tai [chūdō jissō]), which includes Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō. Next come their potential strength and energy (Nyoze riki), the manifestation of that energy and strength, which is their influence (Nyoze sa), their fundamental causes (Nyoze in), along with their karmic circumstances (Nyoze en), the effects they produce (Nyoze ka), and their apparent and karmic consequences (Nyoze hō). Also in any way dharmas make themselves perceptible to any of our six sense organs – eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, and mind – has a coherence with their ‘apparent karmic consequences’, which are present in every instant of life (Nyoze hon makku kyō tō).” [See also Such a final superlative that is equally present from the first to the last of the nine qualities of suchness.]

Tendai – Japanese: Tendai Daishi – Chinese: Tiantai dashi (T’ien T’ai)
Usually referred to as the Universal Teacher Tendai (T’ien T’ai), he founded the Tendai School; he is also known as Chigi. He was born in Hunan, China, in about 538 CE and died in 597 CE at sixty years of age. He became a neophyte at seven years old and was fully ordained when he was twenty. In 575, he went to the Tendai Mountain in Chechiang, where he established his famous school based on the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) as being the summit of Shākyamuni's teaching.

Then from such an appearance to such a requital, all these nine such qualities (nyoze) are from the first to the last equally the ultimate dimension of the real aspect of all dharmas (things) – Japanese: Honmatsu kūkyōtō
In the Second Chapter on Expedient Means of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), when the Buddha Shākyamuni expounded the real aspect of all dharmas, he summed it up with a lateral and objective view of all dharmas. This is referred to as the ten ways whereby dharmas make themselves present – appearance, nature, substance, strength, action, cause, affinity, fruition, karmic requital, and a final superlative that is equally present from the first to the last of the nine such qualities. The first is such an appearance, and the last such a requital. Then, from such an appearance to such a requital, all these nine such qualities (nyoze) are equally the ultimate dimension of the real aspect of all the dharmas. The ultimate dimension of the real aspect of all dharmas is in no way separate from the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces. In whatever way we may conceive this idea, any concept of existence must imply the whole of it. [See also
Ten ways whereby dharmas make themselves present to any of our six sense organs – eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, and mind, One instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces, Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas.]

Three bodies, the – Japanese: Sanjin – Sanskrit: Trikaya
Three properties of a Buddha – the Dharma body (hosshin, Dharma-kāya), reward or wisdom body (hōshin, sambhoga-kāya), and the corresponding body (ōjin, nirmāna-kāya). The reward body or wisdom body is the reward or wisdom of being entirely enlightened to the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces, which is the Utterness of the Dharma. The Dharma body of a Buddha is the fact that his existence occupies all time, all space, simultaneously and effortlessly, as does the single thought containing three thousand existential spaces. The corresponding body is the manifestation that Buddhas or Nichiren use, in order to propagate their teaching and to liberate sentient beings from the painful cycles of living and dying. In the teachings prior to the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), these three bodies were expounded as being three separate Buddhas. But in the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) they are seen as three separate qualities of a single Buddha. In The Oral Transmission on the Meaning of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden), Nichiren says, “The Tathāgata is Shākyamuni, which generally speaking implies all the Buddhas of the ten directions of the past, present, and future. In particular, it means the three bodies that are independent of all action and belong to the original terrain.”

Three bodies independent of all karma, the – Japanese: Musa no sanjin
The term independent of all karma is what there is beyond all concept of time or existence. It is the fundamental essence of all being and completely unsoiled by any activity or karma whatsoever. The three bodies refer to the Dharma (here it implies the whole of existence), wisdom, and corresponding bodies of the Buddha. Because the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces (ichinen sanzen) comprises the whole of existence, both enlightened and unenlightened, and also because the ten realms of dharmas (things or whatever may have an effect on any of our five aggregates) are not separate from the nine other realms of dharmas, the three bodies independent of all karma are also the self-received entity of the Tathāgata that is used with absolute freedom, whose original source lies in the ever-present infinite in time (kuon ganjo) and is not separate from Nichiren or the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon).

Three kinds of existential space, the – Japanese: San seken
From the Buddhist point of view, everything and all affairs that emerge from the past into the present and on to the future, through various causes, concomitancies and circumstances, are called existence. The intervals between these affairs and things are called space. The three kinds of existential space mean that all the different kinds of dharma, which are brought about by various causes and karmic relationships, are divided into three categories, although they do not entirely stand apart from each other.

In Nāgārjuna’s Universal Discourse on the Wisdom that Carries Beings over to the Shores of Nirvana, the three kinds of existential space are described as the existential space of the five aggregates (go’on seken), the existential space of sentient beings as individuals (shujō seken), and the existential space of abode and terrain (kokudo seken). The five aggregates are materiality or form, sensation, concepts, volition which is often influenced by former lives or traumas in the space between dying and being reborn, and cognition of perceiving ourselves to be what we seem that reveal the differences in sentient beings. The existential space of sentient beings means that, since all sentient beings are made up of the five aggregates, their lives are characterised by the ten realms of dharmas. The existential space of abode and terrain clarifies the differentiated dwelling places of the ten realms.

When Shākyamuni makes clear the whereabouts of his abode and terrain in the Sixteenth Chapter on the Lifespan of the Tathāgata, the three kinds of existential space become perfectly adjusted to the thousand such qualities, and the principle of the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces is fully established. [See also One instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces, Ten realms, Ten qualities od suchness, Five aggregates.]

Three kinds of Proof (through Buddhist Practice), the – Japanese: san-shō
These are 1) proof in the sutric texts, 2) a proof in theory, 3) a proof in actual reality. These three kinds of proof show the superiority or the shortcomings of a religious teaching.

The textual proof is to confirm the doctrine of a particular school on the basis of the sutras. The theoretical proof implies that each teaching is compatible with reason or logic. The proof in actual reality is one that is existent and underlies appearances. Nichiren Daishōnin states in his writing, With Regard to the Three Tripitakas Praying for Rain, “On looking into the mind that underlies the enlightened Dharma of Nichiren, it does not go beyond any logical proof. And yet, a logical proof is not surpassed by a proof in actual reality.” It is here that Nichiren shows that he considers the sutric proofs and also logical proofs to be less important than the tangible proof in actual reality.

Three thousand universes ground into dust – Japanese: sanzen jintengō or sanzen jindengō
This is probably the immense amount of time since life likely appeared in the universe and when the Tathāgata Universally Pervading Superlative Wisdom (Daitsūchishō, Mahābhijnāj˝ānābhibhu) is said to have first expounded the Dharma Flower Sutra. From the point of view of Shākyamuni, there would always be an India in existence, as it was when he was active. Three thousand universes ground into dust is often defined as the following: if a person were to grind three thousand universes from their inception to their end into dust, then were to travel towards the east with all these particles of dust and were to cross over another thousand universes and drop a single particle of dust and were to continue in this same manner until all of the original particles were used up, the term that is used for this lapse of time is referred to in Japanese as sanzen jintengō. Each particle of dust represents a kalpa. [See also Kalpa.]

Three Treasures, the – Japanese: sambō – Sanskrit ratna traya
In the Buddha teaching of Shākyamuni, these are the following: 1) There is the Buddha who has three aspects (butsu, hotoke); 2) his Dharma teaching (Dharma, ); and 3) the community of monks (, sangha).

The three aspects of the Buddha are 1) his suchness or thusness, which is the true form of dharmas (nyoze tai) and indicates the reality which transcends the multiplicity of apparent existence. This entity of the Dharma is regarded as being identical with the embodiment of the Dharma (hosshin, Dharma-kāya) and cannot be expressed in words or even conceived of by the unenlightened. This concept is understood as real hard existence (jitsu u) and, on the other hand, as (, shūnyatā or even as Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō). This is the reality upon which both phenomenal and noumenal existence depends. The second aspect of the Buddha is 2) his wisdom (), which is represented by everything that is inscribed on the Fundamental Object of Veneration (gohonzon). The third aspect is 3) his manifestations (ōjin, nirmāna-kāya) to save all sentient beings such as us. [See also Dharma body independent of all karma, Three bodies.]

Three vehicles – Japanese: sanjō
These three vehicles are the two vehicles of the hearers of the Buddha’s voice or the intellectuals of today, along with the people who have a partial enlightenment due to a profound search for the meaning of life, and the bodhisattva vehicle. These three vehicles were cleared away in order to reveal the one Buddha Vehicle in the Second Chapter on Expedient Means. [See also One Buddha vehicle, Vehicle.]

Title and Theme – Japanese: daimoku
The titles of books within the bounds of ancient Chinese literature are usually precise as to the meaning of the content. It is particularly so with the titles of the sutras. In Schools of Nichiren, the title and theme invariably refers to the Sutra on the White Lotus Flower-like Mechanism of the Utterness of the Dharma and to the chanting of Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which is one of the three universal esoteric dharmas (things). [See also Nam myōhō renge kyō, Actual fundamental substance, Dharmas and dharma, Sutra.]

Tripitaka
Tripitaka is an expression that covers the three branches of teachings of the Individual Vehicle. These are 1) Abhidharma, which consist of works attributed to the Buddha’s disciples, 2) the sutras, and 3) the monastic rules and regulations. The term Tripitaka is also used as a title for a person who is well-versed in the tenets of the Buddha teaching. [See also Arhat, Becoming a Buddha, Universal Vehicle.]

Triple body – Japanese: Sanjin [See also Three bodies.]

Troublesome worries – Japanese: bonnō
Temptations of passions and of ignorance, which disturb and distress the mind, are divided into six fundamental and derivative types. The fundamental types are covetousness or indulgence, anger or hatred, being misled by appearances or delusions, pride, doubt, and false views, such as that of a personal ego or that we only live one life. The derivative types of troublesome worries are (i) indulgence, (ii) anger, (iii) hatred, (iv) delusion, (v) pride, (vi) moral affliction, (vii) distress, (viii) trials, (ix) temptations, and (x) wrongdoing.

All of this may seem complicated and analytical. However, in a practical sense, troublesome worries refer to practically every kind of mental or emotional activity. Apart from those persons who can attain a perfect absorption of thought into the one object of meditation, which is the perfect samādhi, such mental acrobatics are of little or no importance in the teaching of Nichiren. There is very little one can do about the continual rolling of the wheels of the mind. The denizen of hell is only concerned about his release from such a place, whereas the bodhisattva is fully preoccupied with the salvation of others. What can be done is that we can change the quality of our troublesome worries by changing the quality of our lives through study and practice.

Two vehicles, the – Japanese: Nijō
These two vehicles are made up of 1) the hearers of the voice or the intellectual seekers of today (shōmon, shrāvaka) and 2) the people who have become partially realised due to a profound search for the meaning of existence (engaku, hyakushibutsu, pratyekabuddha). These two are usually lumped together. The two vehicles have already been defined in this Glossary in the Ten psychological realms of dharmas. However, during the time when Shākyamuni Buddha was teaching, many of the people who belonged to these two realms of dharmas came from the Brahman caste and, considering themselves to be superior, were unable to find enough faith to comply with what the Buddha said. Hence, in the teachings that came before the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), there was an underlying feeling that the people of the two vehicles could not open their inherent Buddha nature on account of psychological problems. Nevertheless, in the Chapter on Expedient Means, from the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō), the sutric evidence of Sharihotsu (Shariputra) being able to reveal his own Buddha nature becomes manifestly clear. . [See also One Buddha Vehicle, Vehicle, Three vehicles.]

Universal – Japanese: Dai – Sanskrit: Mahā
This Chinese translation of Mahā is based on the definition in the Chinese dictionary Discerning the Signs and Explaining the Ideograms (Shuowen jiezi, Setsu bun kai ji), compiled about 100 CE, where it states, “Heaven is all-embracing; earth is all-embracing, and humanity is also all-embracing...” Although this ideogram is used nowadays to express size or greatness, in the Buddha teaching it has the meaning of all-pervading or omnipresent.

Universal Demon King of the Sixth Heaven – Japanese: Dai Roku Ten no Ma’ ō
He is also known as the Deva King Independent of Those who are Converted by Another [“Another” in this case being the Daishōnin]. In the ninth fascicle of the Discourse that Carries Beings over to Nirvana, it says, “This Deva snatches away those who have been converted by another. However, since this is for his own amusement he is called ‘Independent of Those who are Converted by Another’.” This deva dwells in the highest of the six heavens of desire. He strives to prevent those who have faith in the Buddha teaching from practising, or even those who seek the truth or any form of realisation. Nichiren describes this Demon as the fundamental lack of clarity or bewilderment that is inherent in all existence.

Universal Discourse on the Wisdom that Carries Beings over to the Shores of Nirvana (Treatise on the All-embracing Wisdom that Ferries Sentient Beings over the Seas of Mortality to the Shore of Nirvana) – Japanese: Daichidōron
Attributed to Nāgārjuna (Ryūju) [Sanskrit: Nāgārjuna], it was translated into Chinese by Kumaraju [Sanskrit: Kumārajîva]. It is a hundred-volume commentary on the Sutra on the Universal Wisdom that enables beings to reach the other shore of enlightenment.

Universal Teacher, the – Japanese: Daishi
A title that is given to those such as Shākyamuni and various bodhisattvas who teach living beings the highest values. It is also an honourary title awarded to the monks of special merit by the Imperial court. The Tendai monk Saichō was given the title The Universal Teacher Dengyō (Dengyō Daishi) and Kūkai that of The Universal Teacher Kōbō. These are the first instances of the use of this title in Japan.

Universal Vehicle – Japanese: Daijō – Sanskrit: Mahāyāna
One of the two major tendencies of the Buddha teaching. Vehicle is a means or type of teaching that will bring enlightenment. As opposed to the Individual Vehicle (shōjō, hīnayāna), the teachings of the Universal Vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna) are not only concerned with personal salvation, but also stress the importance of setting all beings on the road to Buddhahood. The Nichiren Kōmon School is, from the viewpoint of its own teaching, the summit of the Universal Vehicle (daijō, mahāyāna).

Utterly awakened – Japanese: Myōgaku
The imponderably inexpressible supreme and correct awakening to the Buddha fruition, in which all troublesome worries are entirely cut off. In the teachings of Tendai (T’ien T’ai), it is the highest of the fifty-two stages in the process of becoming a Buddha. In terms of the six inseparabilities from the Buddha nature that refer to the cultivation and practice of the all-inclusive teaching, it is the superlative not being separate from the Buddha nature. [See also Fifty-two bodhisattava stages in the process of becoming a Buddha, Six Inseparabilities.]

Vajra – Japanese: Kongō – Sanskrit: Vajra
This word is vicariously translated as “diamond”, “thunderbolt”, “diamond club”, etc. One Chinese definition is the “hardest of metals”. Anthropologists have often thought of the vajra as being a sun symbol. The references to its hardness and diamond-like qualities are synonymous with its indestructibility and power. It seems also to have been a weapon of Indian soldiers in ancient times. However, we think of it as a diamond-like light that comes from somewhere deep inside us, such as that seen by visionaries or by people who have had near-death experiences. It is the part of us that is indestructible.

Vehicle – Japanese: – Sanskrit: Yāna
A means or a type of teaching whereby the Buddha imparts his enlightenment according to the propensities of his hearers. In the Buddha teaching, this ordinary word for a cart, conveyance or vehicle, is a word for the various teachings that carry people toward enlightenment. The Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) refers to the one Buddha vehicle, the two vehicles, and the three vehicles. In the teaching of Nichiren, there is only one vehicle. [See also Two vehicles, Three vehicles, One Buddha Vehicle, Universal Vehicle.]

Wisdom body, the – Japanese: Hōshin [See also Three bodies.]

Wisdom body independent of all karma, the – Japanese: Musa hōshin
This entity is one of the three bodies independent of all karma, whose origin is in the ever-present infinite in time (kuon ganjo). Its function is the wisdom and understanding of total enlightenment. In other words, it is the wisdom and understanding of Nichiren Daishōnin the original Buddha, as well as being the Buddha for the present period, which is the final phase of the Dharma teaching of Shākyamuni (mappō). By holding a genuine and devout faith in the Buddha teaching of Nichiren Daishōnin as well persevering in the recitation of the title and theme (daimoku), those who practise will make the strength of the Buddha and the strength of the dharmas (things or whatever may have an effect on any of our five aggregates) apparent in their lives. The practitioners may even open up their inherent Buddha nature with their persons just as they are (soku shin jō Butsu).

Wisdom of the real suchness as it is according to circumstances that belongs to the original gateway , the – Japanese: Honmon zui.en shinnyō no chi
The wisdom of the real suchness according to circumstances that the Buddha expounded in the original gateway of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Myōhō Renge Kyō) is his perceptive understanding that the real principle of concrete reality is the consequence of an infinity of circumstance and karmic circumstances. The fact that the original Buddha of the original gateway revealed that his original terrain is the primordial infinity implies that every conceivable dharma must be included in his wisdom and understanding. This wisdom is essentially the fundamentally existing mutual possession of the ten realms of dharmas – the actual fundamental substance of the pragmatic one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces and the three universal esoteric Dharmas. . [See also Oral Transmission on the Meaning of the Dharma Flower Sutra (Ongi Kuden), Treatise on the Significance of the Actual Fundamental Substance, Treatise on the Real Aspect of All Dharmas.]

Yasha – Japanese: Yasha – Sanskrit: Yaksha
These protectors of the Buddha teaching are often seen as the guardian spirits of nature. There seems to be no definite representation; in Java, they are portrayed as sturdy, smallish human beings, with unusually large canine teeth. Yashas are mentioned in various sutras, but most of the material concerning them is in the realm of folklore. [See also Humanlike non-humans.]

Yoyana
A yojana is a distance that represents a day’s march of the royal army, which I would guess might be something just under 30 kilometres. However, other dictionaries claim this distance to be 160 km, 120 km, or 50 km.

Zen School, the – Japanese: Zenshū
Probably this Buddhist school is the best-known in the West, due to the enormous quantity of excellent translations by Suzuki Daisetz and many other scholars. This school teaches that the true nature of one's mind can be realised through meditation and various other techniques, such as, questions and answers, riddles, and parables. Like all other schools, it does border on the truth, but lacks an all-embracing theory such as the one instant of thought containing three thousand existential spaces. This school is also harshly criticized by Nichiren in a number of his writings.