Even in the midst of such a succession of great persecutions, the Daishonin’s spirit always shone with a sun-like brilliance. His state of life was as immense and vast as the ocean. No matter what fierce waves arise on the surface, in its depths the ocean itself is always serene. It cannot be moved.
The Daishonin attained this vast state of life by having profound confidence in the truth that all people can attain Buddhahood, cherishing a great wish for the enlightenment of all people of the Latter Day, and by manifesting the heart of the lion king, which is completely undaunted in the face of any negative functions.
In “On Practicing the Buddha’s Teachings,” which he wrote during the Sado Exile, the Daishonin looks back on his struggles in the Latter Day — his offensive and defensive struggles against the workings of devilish functions and describes those battles as truly joyful.
This guidance is an abstract from 'The World of Nichiren Daishonin Writings' with universal value and application
In even the most dire circumstances, the Daishonin always managed to open a way forward. He certainly never retreated. He advanced, advanced again, and continued advancing.
When we practice the Lotus Sutra, persecutions are bound to arise. It is by enduring and overcoming persecutions, however, that we can manifest the “Thus Come One whose life span is immeasurable,” which is the original reality of our lives. In that sense, the Daishonin teaches that persecutions are fuel for polishing and tempering our own lives in the deepest sense. Those who avoid difficulties and training certainly cannot achieve personal advancement and growth. This is the Daishonin’s great confidence based on his own experience, and an eternal truth of Buddhist practice.
On the other hand, as for the rulers of the country who had persecuted him on account of the Lotus Sutra despite his complete innocence of breaking any law of society, the Daishonin says: “I have . . . encountered a ruler who will enable me to free myself in my present existence from the sufferings of birth and death” (WND, 44). He goes so far as to express gratitude to the ruler as a person “to whom I owe the most profound debt of gratitude” (WND, 43) for having made it possible to carry out his practice for attaining Buddhahood. He is utterly indomitable, while maintaining a spirit of supreme humanism.
In “The Teaching, Capacity, Time, and Country,” he says: “As I, Nichiren, ponder the truth of the Buddha’s words, I realize that these three types of enemies are indeed real. If I allow them to remain hidden, then I will not be the votary of the Lotus Sutra. Yet if I cause them to appear, then I am almost certain to lose my life” (WND, 53).
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