“It is easy to receive the Lotus Sutra but difficult to uphold it; Buddhahood therefore, lies in upholding it.”
When we are awakened, beyond attachment and ego, to uphold this Dharma even at the cost of our lives. What does this mean for us?
When we correctly practice the recitation of the Odaimoku in order to uphold the jewel of the Lotus Sutra, which the Buddha gave us and placed around our necks. This means to uphold and recite the Odaimoku with a gentle and upright heart, “Wishing to see the Buddha with all his heart, even at the cost of his life,” is to tread the path of the Buddha.
This means in my life, Priorities! When people ask me the question, “is Buddhism a religion?” I state that there are religious aspects to our practice, but overall I feel it is a value system.
While training as a Shami (Novice Priest) with Tsukamoto Sensei, I had to rethink my practice of Buddhism, since I was now going to be living and working among the regular “Secular” world. As a monk previously in a monastic system, the only thing to focus on being Buddhist practice and study. Living in the secular world, my Buddhist boundaries and values were in competition with many more aspects of life and I realized that Buddhism was for one to see the correct value in actions and pursuits and cultivate positive karma based in this principle. When I say value, I am not speaking of monetary value but receiving the benefits of being in harmony with the spiritual reality of Myoho “Universal Law”.
So my practice of the Lotus Sutra was based directly in what I valued most! So as I look at my own Buddhist practice, I realize this must be constantly assessed in our daily lives and to uphold the Buddha Dharma is to value it over all things. I had to also see if I could lose everything, would I still keep it. Easy to say, but difficult to do!
I value nothing over unsurpassed enlightenment as found in the Lotus Sutra and dedicate my life to the teaching of the Lotus Sutra.
This must be constantly inculcated as my base. Which I feel in my itten (One Point) located 3 fingers below the navel and between the tops of my hip bones. This is a spiritual center and where I feel my spiritual/physical center is, although the itten is not an actual thing. I put it there and place my mind in it at all times. Or at least try to…returning it to this place when it wanders.
What do you currently hold at the Top of your values in your life?
Do you value nothing but unsurpassed enlightenment, even if you were to lose your life upholding it?
Please share your ideas and answers with us!