Part 1: Happiness; Chapter 2:
Developing a Life State of Happiness [2.3]
2.3 The Life State of Practitioners of the Mystic Law
Describing three characteristics or qualities of practitioners of Nichiren Buddhism, President Ikeda calls on us to be courageous and filled with hope as we build a self that can savor joy at all times.
What characterizes the life state of genuine practitioners of Nichiren Buddhism?
First of all, it is having no fear—not being disturbed or daunted by anything. Lies and deceit abound in society. It is foolish to allow ourselves to be swayed by such things; it only leads to unhappiness. The Mystic Law and Nichiren Daishonin are absolutely free of any falsehood. The wisest possible course, therefore, is to dedicate our lives to the widespread propagation of the Law—to kosen-rufu.
On account of our faith in Nichiren Buddhism, we may from time to time encounter unpleasantness from others. We may also find ourselves working much harder than many around us. But that is all part of our Buddhist practice.
The Daishonin teaches that we can attain enlightenment in this lifetime. This entails weathering the trials of the three obstacles and four devils.1 But if we can do that, we can attain enlightenment in this lifetime and enjoy the boundless life state of Buddhahood throughout eternity. That’s why we need to forge ahead fearlessly, positively, and courageously, come what may.
The second characteristic is living with vibrant hope. Nothing is stronger than hope. The Mystic Law is a source of eternal hope. People who never lose hope, no matter what happens, are truly happy.
The third characteristic is a state of life in which we savor joy at all times. It is to have such joy that, even at the time of death, one can say with a heartfelt smile: “What a wonderful life that was! Now where shall I go next?” That is the life state of a genuine practitioner of Nichiren Buddhism.
Our Buddhist practice enables us to achieve an expansive state of being in which we can enjoy everything in life. As the Daishonin says, faith in the Mystic Law is “the greatest of all joys” (OTT, 212).
From a speech at a Chubu Region representatives conference, Aichi, May 26, 1997.
The Wisdom for Creating Happiness and Peace brings together selections from President Ikeda’s works under key themes.
- *1Three obstacles and four devils: Various obstacles and hindrances to the practice of Buddhism. The three obstacles are (1) the obstacle of earthly desires, (2) the obstacle of karma, and (3) the obstacle of retribution. The four devils are (1) the hindrance of the five components, (2) the hindrance of earthly desires, (3) the hindrance of death, and (4) the hindrance of the devil king.