Immeasurable Benefit Contained in the Dairnoku
This letter was written at Ichinosawa on Sado Island in 1272 and addressed to Shijo Kingo, a samurai and one of Nichiren’s most devoted followers who lived in Kamakura. It was prompted by Nichiren’s gratitude for offerings that Shijo Kingo had sent via messenger as a way to commemorate the third anniversary of his mother’s passing (held on the second year of her death).
This is a passage in which Nichiren teaches that great benefits and blessings are contained in even a single word or phrase of the Lotus Sutra. In our context, it means that immeasurable benefit is contained in the chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. By saying that “it embodies the threefold blessings of Shakyamuni, Many Treasures, and the Buddhas of the ten directions”, Nichiren teaches that blessings of all other Buddhist sutras are contained in the Lotus Sutra. This is because the seed of enlightenment that enabled Shakyamuni, Many Treasures and all Buddhas of the ten directions to attain Buddhahood is contained in the Lotus Sutra.
Nichiren elaborates on this point by using the example of the “wish-granting jewel”. As the name suggests, a wish-granting jewel is a mystical jewel that grants any wish one makes. Owning the wish-granting jewel is equivalent to enjoying countless other jewels and treasures in the universe.
Through this analogy, Nichiren illustrates that the Mystic Law is the teaching of foremost supremacy and that the daimoku of Nam-myoho-renge-kyo is the ultimate truth that embodies everything. In this sense, one who chants Nam- myoho-renge-kyo with absolute faith will eventually have one’s prayers answered and receive protection.
Let us always exert ourselves in the practice of chanting daimoku, which is the wellspring of all good fortune and Iive a life filled with immeasurable benefits.