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Gosho Study

Putting ‘an End to People’s Suffering’

Photo by Jordan Wozniak / Unsplash.

Great evil portends the arrival of great good. If all of Jambudvipa [the entire world] were to be thrown into chaos, there could be no doubt that [this sutra would] “be widely propagated throughout Jambudvipa.”
—“The Kalpa of Decrease,” The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 1, p. 1122

Ikeda Sensei’s Guidance

The light of wisdom of the correct teaching of Buddhism shows its true worth in times of great confusion and turmoil. [Nichiren] Daishonin clearly believed that the darkest hour of night was but a prelude to a dawn of people’s awakening—an opportunity for change, a turning point. “Great evil portends the arrival of great good,” he writes. He is saying in effect: “There’s no need for pessimism. I, Nichiren, possessing the sun-like wisdom of the Buddha, have appeared in response to this dark time. Great evil portends the arrival of the great good of kosen-rufu.” How inspired and heartened the Daishonin’s followers must have been by his resolute conviction.

The Daishonin further writes: “If all of Jambudvipa [the entire world] were to be thrown into chaos, there could be no doubt that [this Lotus Sutra would] ‘be widely propagated
throughout Jambudvipa.’” Of course, Nichiren Buddhism does not by any means advocate a doomsday vision; rather, its aim is to put an end to people’s suffering and enable them to attain happiness in the real world. Precisely because the Latter Day of the Law is a time of seemingly insoluble challenges, we can take action to transform things, overturning evil practices of the past, carrying out radical reevaluations and starting at the source to find solutions for change. Such thoroughgoing transformation will, quite naturally, meet with resistance, but it is the only way to open a new path forward. The Buddhism of Nichiren Daishonin is a teaching of unwavering commitment to the positive transformation of reality—a teaching that makes it possible for us to change this troubled saha world into a realm of peace and happiness without fail. (The Teachings for Victory, vol. 2, pp. 154–55)

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