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Brief Guidances

Difficulties Are an Opportunity for Personal Growth

Words of Encouragement From Ikeda Sensei

The pine tree lives for ten thousand years, and therefore its boughs become bent and twisted. . . . The votary of the Lotus Sutra is the Thus Come One [the Buddha] whose life span is immeasurable; no wonder his practice is hindered, just as the pine tree’s branches are bent or broken.

“The Difficulty of Sustaining Faith,” The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 1, p. 471

Nichiren Daishonin states that the votary, or practitioner, of the Lotus Sutra is the “Thus Come One whose life span is immeasurable” and is therefore destined to face ceaseless obstacles. Only by overcoming challenges and difficulties can we firmly establish the indestructible life state of Buddhahood.

The essence of faith lies in steadfastly continuing to uphold the Mystic Law amid the harsh realities of society. The Buddhas and heavenly deities throughout the universe are sure to rejoice and protect those who do so.

My dear friends, champions of Soka! With unwavering prayer, may you stand tall like mighty trees unshaken by any storm.

Translated from the October 23, 2020 Seikyo Shimbun, the Soka Gakkai’s daily newspaper.

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