Part 3: Kosen-rufu and World Peace
Chapter 21: A Life Dedicated to Kosen-rufu [21.1]

21.1 The Aim of Nichiren Buddhism Is Kosen-rufu

Do not ask
whether the mighty flow of kosen-rufu
is an inevitable consequence of history.
Rather, always ask yourself
whether you have the passion
to make kosen-rufu inevitable
through your own sweat and effort.

This is a well-known passage from President Ikeda’s poem “From the Indigo, an Even Deeper Blue.” The realization of kosen-rufu and ultimately world peace is the lofty ideal to which he has dedicated his entire life, and it is the aim and purpose of Nichiren Buddhism.

Part 3 of this series of selected excerpts is titled “Kosen-rufu and World Peace” and introduces President Ikeda’s profound philosophy of peace based on Nichiren Buddhism.

Its opening chapter, “A Life Dedicated to Kosen-rufu,” features selections from his guidance on the essence of kosen-rufu and our mission as Buddhists.

Happiness is life’s goal. Peace is what all people desire. History must move in the direction of happiness and peace.

It is human nature to seek a firm guiding principle leading toward those aims. Science, government, society, and religion must also be focused on human happiness and peace.

Regarding the suffering of humanity as his own, Nichiren Daishonin rose to action, holding high the banner of “establishing the correct teaching for the peace of the land.” He clearly set forth a guiding principle leading to happiness and peace.

The Daishonin writes: “Can there be any doubt that . . . the great pure Law of the Lotus Sutra [Nam-myoho-renge-kyo] will be spread far and wide [kosen-rufu] throughout Japan and all the other countries of Jambudvipa [the entire world]?” (WND-1, 550). He predicted worldwide kosen-rufu and entrusted its realization to his disciples of future generations.

Nichiren Buddhism teaches that all living beings equally possess the Buddha nature and embody the principle of “three thousand realms in a single moment of life.”1 It also reveals the means by which we can break free of all the chains that bind us. Affirming human dignity, equality, and freedom, Nichiren Buddhism is a world religion committed to bringing peace to humanity. It will illuminate the 21st century and impart the great light of universal happiness to the world.

From The New Human Revolution, vol. 1, “Sunrise” chapter.


The most distinguishing characteristic of Nichiren Buddhism is its emphasis on kosen-rufu—the widespread propagation of the Mystic Law.

It is a teaching that urges us to dedicate ourselves to spreading this universal Law of life throughout the world and realizing happiness and peace for all humanity, because this is the mission for which we were born into this world and the path to our own happiness as well.

In Nichiren Buddhism, therefore, we practice for both ourselves and others. We strive in our Buddhist practice not just to gain the benefits of the Law ourselves, but to share the teachings with others and introduce them to the practice so that they, too, can gain the same benefits.

The Daishonin states: “You must not only persevere yourself; you must also teach others. . . . Teach others to the best of your ability, even if it is only a single sentence or phrase” (WND-1, 386). Chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo and sharing the teachings of Nichiren Buddhism with others are the two wheels of our Buddhist practice.

Nichiren Buddhism also stresses the importance of “establishing the correct teaching for the peace of the land.”

Throughout his lifetime, the Daishonin asserted the need to spread the correct teaching and firmly establish the philosophical principles of Buddhism in the heart of each individual, thereby creating a peaceful and prosperous society for all.

From one perspective, it can be said that “establishing the correct teaching,” or widely spreading the Mystic Law, represents our religious mission as practitioners of Nichiren Buddhism, and that realizing the “peace of the land” represents our social mission.

Nichiren Daishonin writes: “If you care anything about your personal security, you should first of all pray for order and tranquillity throughout the four quarters of the land, should you not?” (WND-1, 24). “Order and tranquillity throughout the four quarters of the land” refers to peace in society. We are fulfilling our mission as Nichiren Buddhists when we strive to actualize a peaceful land by changing society for the better and bringing peace and prosperity to all people.

From The New Human Revolution, vol. 15, “Flowering” chapter.

The Wisdom for Creating Happiness and Peace brings together selections from President Ikeda’s works on key themes.

  • *1Three thousand realms in a single moment of life: A philosophical system established by the Great Teacher T’ien-t’ai of China based on the Lotus Sutra. The “three thousand realms” indicates the varying aspects that life assumes at each moment. At each moment, life manifests one of the Ten Worlds. Each of these worlds possesses the potential for all ten within itself, thus making one hundred possible worlds. Each of these hundred worlds possesses the ten factors and operates within each of the three realms of existence, thus making three thousand realms. In other words, all phenomena are contained within a single moment of life, and a single moment of life permeates the three thousand realms of existence, or the entire phenomenal world.