I, Nichiren, am the lone forerunner of the bodhisattvas who emerged from the earth. I may even be one of them. If I am counted as one of the bodhisattvas who emerged from the earth, my disciples and followers too are among the ranks of those bodhisattvas from the earth, are they not? The “Teacher of the Dharma” chapter states, “If someone expounds even a phrase of the Lotus Sūtra even to one person in secret, then you should know that such a person is my messenger, dispatched by Me and carries out My work.” This refers to none other than us.
Nichiren wrote this passage as part of his Treatise on All Phenomena as Ultimate Reality (Shohō Jissō-Shō), sent to the monk Sairen-Bō. He refers to Chapters Ten and Fifteen of the Lotus Sūtra. This passage reminds us of our position as followers of Nichiren, and fellow messengers of Śākyamuni Buddha.
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