Tag Archives: LS29

Day 29

Day 29 covers all of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Having last month concluded the chapter, we begin again at the top of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Thereupon Endless-Intent Bodhisattva rose from his seat, bare j his right shoulder, joined rus hands together towards the Buddha, and said, “World-Honored One! Why is World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva called World-Voice-Perceiver?”

The Buddha said to Endless-Intent Bodhisattva:

“Good man! If many hundreds of thousands of billions of living beings hear [the name of] World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva and call his name with all their hearts when they are under various sufferings, World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva will immediately perceive their voices, and cause them to emancipate themselves [from the sufferings]. Those who keep the name of this World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva will not be burned when they are put into a conflagration [because they are protected] by, the supernatural powers of this Bodhisattva. Those who call his name will be able to take ground when they are washed by an inundation. Suppose hundreds of thousands of billions of living beings are crossing an ocean in order to obtain gold, silver, lapis lazuli, shell, agate, coral, amber pearl, and other treasures, and suppose the ship carrying them is blown to the country of rākṣasa-devils by a storm. If one of the crew calls the name of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva, all the crew will be saved from the attacks of the rākṣasas. Because of this, [this Bodhisattva] is called World-Voice-Perceiver.

See The Many Faces of World-Voice-Perceiver

The Many Faces of World-Voice-Perceiver

The complete name of this chapter is the “Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.” Universal Gate means that he [or she], representing the gate of Buddhism, is open to everyone without exception. This does not mean that there is only one gate [as some religions teach]. There are as many gates as there are people and other creatures who are in need. Gate is mukha in Sanskrit, which also means “face” in that language. World-Voice-Perceiver has many faces, which means he is expounding many teachings.

Introduction to the Lotus Sutra

Day 29

Day 29 covers all of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Having last month covered examples of World-Voice-Perceiver’s wisdom, we conclude the chapter.

Suppose you are in a law-court for a suit,
Or on a battlefield, and are seized with fear.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
All your enemies will flee away.

His wonderful voice [comes from] his perceiving the voice of the world.
It is like the voice of Brahman, like the sound of a tidal wave.
It excels all the other voices of the world.
Therefore, think of him constantly!

Do not doubt him even at a moment’s thought!
The Pure Saint World-Voice-Perceiver is reliable
When you suffer, and when you are confronted
With the calamity of death.

By all these merits, he sees
All living beings with his compassionate eyes.
The ocean of his accumulated merits is boundless.
Therefore, bow before him!

Thereupon Earth-Holding Bodhisattva rose from his seat, proceeded to the Buddha, and said to him:

“World-Honored One! Those who hear of his supernatural powers by which he opened the universal gate without hindrance, and which are expounded in this chapter of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva, know this, will be able to obtain not a few merits.”

When the Buddha expounded this chapter of the Universal Gate, the eighty-four thousand living beings in the congregation began to aspire for the unparalleled Anuttara-samyak-saṃbodhi.

The Daily Dharma from June 28, 2017, offers this:

Do not doubt him even at a moment’s thought!
The Pure Saint World-Voice-Perceiver is reliable
When you suffer, and when you are confronted
With the calamity of death.

The Buddha sings these verses in Chapter Twenty-Five of the Lotus Sūtra. The calamity of death is something we all will face eventually, whether it our own or that of those we love. The other calamities in our lives are relatively minor losses which can prepare us for this great calamity. The Bodhisattva World-Voice-Perceiver is the embodiment of Compassion: the desire to benefit all beings. When we learn to use all of the suffering in our lives, especially the calamity of death, as a way to remove our delusions and benefit others, then we can see the world with the eyes of the Buddha and know the joy he declares is at the core of our being.

The Daily Dharma is produced by the Lexington Nichiren Buddhist Community. To subscribe to the daily emails, visit zenzaizenzai.com

Day 29

Day 29 covers all of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Having last month covered examples of World-Voice-Perceiver’s powers in gāthās with, we consider his wisdom.

World-Voice-Perceiver will save
All living beings from misfortunes
And from innumerable sufferings of the world
By the wonderful power of his wisdom.

He has these supernatural powers.
He employs various expedients with his wisdom.
In the ten quarters there is no ksetra
In which he does not appear at all.

Hell, the region of hungry spirits, and the region of animals,
That is the [three) evil regions will be eliminated.
The sufferings of birth, old age, disease and death
Will gradually be eliminated.

He sees the truth of all things and their purity.
He sees all things with his great wisdom.
He sees all things with loving-kindness and compassion.
Think of him constantly! Look up at him constantly!

All darkness is dispelled by the light of his wisdom
As spotless and as pure as the light of the sun.
The light destroys the dangers of wind and fire,
And illumines the whole world brightly.

His precepts out of his loving-kindness brace us up as thunderbolts.
His wishes out of his compassion are as wonderful as large clouds.
He pours the rain of the Dharma as sweet as nectar,
And extinguishes the fire of illusions.

The Daily Dharma from May 17, 2017, offers this:

The Buddha gives this description of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva (Kannon, Kanzeon, Kuan Yin, Avalokitesvara) to Endless-Intent Bodhisattva in Chapter Twenty-Five of the Lotus Sūtra. This Bodhisattva is the embodiment of compassion. As we cultivate our own nature as Bodhisattvas, we find that the only thing that separates us from the happiness of others is our attachment and delusion. When we allow our compassion to grow, we come to see the world as it is.

The Daily Dharma is produced by the Lexington Nichiren Buddhist Community. To subscribe to the daily emails, visit zenzaizenzai.com

Day 29

Day 29 covers all of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Having last month covered the World-Voice-Perceiver’s original vow in gāthās, we continue in gāthās with examples of World-Voice-Perceiver’s powers.

Suppose you are thrown into a large pit of fire
By someone who has an intention of killing you.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver
The pit of fire will change into a pond of water.

Suppose you are in a ship drifting on a great ocean
Where dragons, fish and devils are rampant.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
The ship will not b sunk by the waves.

Suppose you are pushed
Off the top of Mt. Sumeru by someone.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
You will be able to stay in the air like the sun.

Suppose you are chased by an evil man,
And pushed off [the top of] a mountain made of diamond.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
You will not lose even a hair.

Suppose bandits are surrounding you,
And attempting to kill you with swords.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
The bandits will become compassionate t wards you.

Suppose you are sentenced to death,
And the sword is drawn to behead you.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
The sword will suddenly break asunder.

Suppose you are bound up
In pillories, chains, manacles or fetters.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
You will be released from them.

Suppose someone curses you to death,
Or attempts to kill you by various poisons.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
Death will be brought to that person, instead.

Suppose you meet rākṣasas
Or poisonous dragons or other devils.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
They will not kill you.

Suppose you are surrounded by wild animals
Which have sharp, fearful tusks and claws.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver
They will flee away to distant places.

Suppose you meet lizards, snakes, vipers or scorpions
Emitting poisonous vapor like flames.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
They will go away as you call his name.

Suppose clouds arise, lightning flashes, thunder peals,
Hail falls, and a heavy rains comes down.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
The thunderstorm will stop at once.

The Daily Dharma from Aug. 22, 2016, offers this:

Suppose you are sentenced to death,
And the sword is drawn to behead you.
If you think of the power of World-Voice-Perceiver,
The sword will suddenly break asunder.

The Buddha gives this description of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva (Kannon, Kanzeon, Kuan Yin, Avalokitesvara) to Endless-Intent Bodhisattva in Chapter Twenty-Five of the Lotus Sūtra. World-Voice-Perceiver is the embodiment of compassion. When we think of this Bodhisattva, and the power that she holds in this world, we realize what we can accomplish through compassion. When we can be present for the suffering that exists in other beings, and see them without judgement for the flawed creatures that they are, then we allow them to make that same connection with us. The power of compassion is that it inspires others to face what lies at the core of their being: the wish that all beings be peaceful and free from suffering. To break the sword of violence in this world, we must first break it within ourselves.

The Daily Dharma is produced by the Lexington Nichiren Buddhist Community. To subscribe to the daily emails, visit zenzaizenzai.com

Day 29

Day 29 covers all of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Having last month covered Endless-Intent Bodhisattva’s offering to World-Voice-Perceiver, we come to the gāthās.

[The Buddha said to Endless-Intent Bodhisattva,] “Endless-Intent! World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva goes about the Sahā-World, employing these supernatural powers without hindrance.”

Thereupon Endless-lntent Bodhisattva asked the Buddha in gāthās:

World-Honored One with the wonderful marks
I ask you about this again.
Why is the son of the Buddha
Called World-Voice-Perceiver?

The Honorable One with the wonderful marks answered Endless-Intent in gāthās:

Listen! World-Voice-Perceiver practiced
According to the conditions of the places [of salvation].
His vow to save [people] is as deep as the sea.
You cannot fathom it even for kalpas.

On many hundreds of thousands of millions of Buddhas
He attended and made a great and pure vow.
I will tell you about his vow in brief.
If you hear his name, and see him,
And think of him constantly,
You will be able to eliminate all sufferings.

Ryusho Shonin‘s Lecture on the Lotus Sutra quote fits well here:

The real value I think we as modern practitioners can find in Chapter 25, the Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva, is as a model for our own behavior. Through our practice we naturally develop empathy and an ability to listen to and respond to the suffering of others. We each have our unique talents to lend to others but through our practice we can develop greater skill in using those talents in the most effective way to benefit and bring joy to those around us who are suffering.Lecture on the Lotus Sutra

Day 29

Day 29 covers all of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Having last month learned how World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva goes about this Sahā-World, we come to Endless-Intent Bodhisattva’s offering to World-Voice-Perceiver.

“Endless-Intent! This World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva does these meritorious deeds. He takes various shapes, walks about many worlds, and saves the living beings [of those worlds]. Make offerings to World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva with all your hearts! This World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva-mahāsattva gives fearlessness [to those who are] in fearful emergencies. Therefore, he is called the ‘Giver of Fearlessness’ in this Sahā-World.”

The Endless-Intent Bodhisattva said to the Buddha, “WorldHonored One! Now I will make an offering to World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.” From around his neck, he took a necklace of many gems worth hundreds of thousands of ryo of gold, and offered it [to the Bodhisattva], saying, “Man of Virtue! Receive this necklace of wonderful treasures! I offer this to you according to the Dharma!”

World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva did not consent to receive it. Endless-Intent said to World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva again, “Man of Virtue! Receive this necklace out of your compassion towards us!”

Thereupon the Buddha said to World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva:

“Receive it out of your compassion towards this Endless-Intent Bodhisattva, towards the four kinds of devotees, and towards the other living beings including gods, dragons, yakṣas, gandharvas, asuras, garuḍas, kiṃnaras, mahoragas, men and nonhuman beings!”

Thereupon World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva received the necklace out of his compassion towards the four kinds of devotees, and towards the other living beings including gods, dragons, men and nonhuman beings. He divided [the necklace] into two parts, and offered one part of it to Śākyamuni Buddha and the other to the stupa of Many-Treasures Buddha.

This initial rejection of Endless-Intent Bodhisattva’s offering has always interested me. What does it mean? One interpretation I came across offers this:

When you mention Lotus Sutra in Buddhism, it is not uncommon to realise that most Buddhists only heard of Chapter 25 of the Lotus Sutra. This can be understood that this is because Guanyin (Avalokitasvara) is widely loved and accepted in the Chinese Buddhist community, however, Guanyin is not the protagonist of the Lotus Sutra. The protagonist in Lotus Sutra is the Eternal Buddha identified as Sakyamuni Buddha. This is highlighted in Chapter 25 when an offering was made to Guanyin and he declined. The offering was later accepted under the instruction of Sakyamuni Buddha for the benefit of the audience. Guanyin followed the advice in receiving the offering and redirect the offering to Sakyamuni Buddha and Many-Treasure Stupa.

Day 29

Day 29 covers all of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Having last month skipped ahead to discuss the light of World-Voice-Perceiver, we return to how World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva goes about this Sahā-World.

Endless-Intent Bodhisattva said to the Buddha:

“World-Honored One! How does World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva go about this Sahā-World? How does he expound the Dharma to the living beings? What expedients does he employ?”

The Buddha said to Endless-Intent Bodhisattva:

“Good man! In a certain world, World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva takes the shape of a Buddha and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a Buddha. He takes the shape of a Pratyekabuddha and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a Pratyekabuddha. He takes the shape of a Śrāvaka and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a Śrāvaka. He takes the shape of King Brahman and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by King Brahman. He takes the shape of King Sakra and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by King Śakra. He takes the shape of Freedom God and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by Freedom God. He takes the shape of Great-Freedom God and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by Great-Freedom God. He takes the shape of a great general in heaven and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a great general in heaven. He takes the shape of Vaiśravaṇa and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by Vaiśravaṇa. He takes the shape of the king of a small country and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by the king of a small country. He takes the shape of a rich man and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a rich man. He takes the shape of a householder and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a householder. He takes the shape of a prime minister and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a prime minister. He takes the shape of a brahmana and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a brahmana. He takes the shape of a bhikṣu, a bhikṣunī, an upāsakā or an upāsikā and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a bhikṣu, a bhikṣunī, an upāsakā or an upāsikā. He takes the shape of a wife and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by the wife of a rich man, of a householder, of a prime minister, or of a brahmana. He takes the shape of a boy or a girl and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a boy or a girl. He takes the shape of a god, a dragon, a yakṣa, a gandharva, an asura, a garuda, a kiṃnara, a mahoraga, a human being or a nonhuman being and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by one or another of these living beings. He takes the shape of Vajra-Holding God and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by Vajra-Holding God.

During the last two cycles through the Lotus Sūtra I’ve been creating a Microsoft Word copy of the sūtra broken out by the 32 days. During this second cycle through this process I’ve been adding the diacritical marks such as the ū in Sūtra. It was while searching and replacing Day 29 that I noticed sūtra doesn’t appear anywhere in this chapter, let alone Lotus Sūtra. “World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva takes the shape of a Buddha and expounds the Dharma to those who are to be saved by a Buddha,” but maybe not the Lotus Sūtra. Curious.

Day 29

Day 29 covers all of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Last month I completed the enumeration of the supernatural powers of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva-­mahasattva, but before proceeding to how World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva goes about this Saha-World, I want to skip ahead to continue yesterday’s light show.

He sees the truth of all things and their purity.
He sees all things with his great wisdom.
He sees all things with loving-kindness and compassion.
Think of him constantly! Look up at him constantly!

All darkness is dispelled by the light of his wisdom
As spotless and as pure as the light of the sun.
The light destroys the dangers of wind and fire,
And illumines the whole world brightly.

His precepts out of his loving-kindness brace us up as thunderbolts.
His wishes out of his compassion are as wonderful as large clouds.
He pours the rain of the Dharma as sweet as nectar,
And extinguishes the fire of illusions.

The ability to see requires light. “All darkness is dispelled by the light of his wisdom
As spotless and as pure as the light of the sun.” I’m particularly enamored of the vision of thunderbolts of wisdom.

Day 29

Day 29 covers all of Chapter 25, The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Having last month covered lust, anger and stupidity, we complete the enumeration of the supernatural powers of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva-­mahasattva.

A woman who, wishing to have a boy, bows and makes offerings to World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva, will be able to give birth to a boy endowed with merits, virtues and wisdom. [A woman] who, wishing to have a girl, [does the same,] will be able to give birth to a beautiful girl who will be loved and respected by many people because of the roots of virtue which the [newly-born] girl planted in her previous existence. Endless-Intent! Because World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva has these powers, the merits of those who respect him and bow to him will not be fruitless. Therefore, all living beings should keep the name of World-Voice­-Perceiver Bodhisattva.

Endless-Intent! Suppose a good man or woman keeps the names of six thousand and two hundred million Bodhisattvas, that is, of as many Bodhisattvas as there are sands in the River Ganges, and offers drink, food, clothing, bedding and medicine to them throughout his or her life. What do you think of this? Are his or her merits many or not?

Endless-Intent said, “Very many. World-Honored One!”

The Buddha said:

Anyone who keeps the name of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva and bows and makes offerings to him even for a moment, will be given as many merits as to be given to the good man or woman as previously stated. The merits will not be exhausted even after hundreds of thousands of billions of kalpas. Endless-Intent! Anyone who keeps the name of World-Voice­Perceiver Bodhisattva will be given these benefits of innumerable merits and virtues.

In the February 1, 2017, Nichiren Shu News, Rev. Shokai Kanai of the Las Vegas Kannonji Temple, has an article entitled, “Before Trying to Become a Buddha, Behave like a Bodhisattva!”

Kannon Bodhisattava (the statue) with Omandara Gohonzon (the object of veneration, behind the statue)
There is a big difference between statues of Buddha and those of Bodhisattvas. Statues of the Buddha only have one robe because they have renounced worldly matters and attained Buddhahood leaving them with no attachments to anything. On the other hand, Bodhisattvas are lay people. Therefore most statues wear garments, crowns, necklaces, and bracelets. Some Bodhisattvas hold a flower or a medicine bottle in their hand. Thus the Bodhisattvas are decorated with many jewels.

Bodhisattva means, “One who seeks enlightenment not only for himself but also for others.” The most well-known Bodhisattva is “Kannan” described in the Lotus Sutra Chapter 25. The title of the chapter is “The Universal Gate of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva.” Many Buddhists consider this chapter as an independent sutra, therefore it is widely accepted and read regardless of their denomination. The “Universal Gate” symbolizes that it is open to everyone! Some Kannan Bodhisattva statues, such as the one enshrined in the Nevada Kannan Temple, have eleven faces to perceive all directions.

The sutra teaches about benefits in this world. It says, “If living beings call the name of World-Voice-Perceiver Bodhisattva with all their heart when they are under various sufferings, the Bodhisattva will immediately perceive their voices and cause them to emancipate themselves from their suffering.”

There are two kinds of people who come to our temple. One group is seeking salvation from Kannan Bodhisattva. For these people, we do counseling, memorial services, kito blessings and teach them to have peace of body, mind and soul. The other group who comes to the temple wants to learn how to behave like a Bodhisattva. The Kannan Bodhisattva called them to come to the temple. They practice. chanting, Shodaigyo meditation, and studying the Lotus Sutra and Nichiren Buddhism. They are the leaders in our communities.

To behave like a Bodhisattva means to keep up your work in the office, do chores at home and help the community. Bringing happiness to others is behaving like a Bodhisattva.