Who is Nichiren Daishonin ?

NIchiren Daishonin is the votary of the Lotus Sutra who teaches the people of the Latter Day to embrace Nam-myoho-renge-kyo as the way to attain enlightenment. Born on 16th February, 1222, at Kominato in Awa Province (present-day Chiba Prefecture) and named Zennichi-maro, Nichiren Daishonin entered priesthood at the age of 16. He vowed to spread the correct teaching of Buddhism for the sake of the happiness of all people. For this, he began researching Buddhist texts, pursuing his studies throughout Japan. He came to realize that Nam-myoho-renge-kyo which is hidden in the Lotus Sutra could liberate the people of the Latter Day. He returned to Seicho-ji temple at the age of 32. There he chanted the first Nam-myoho-renge-kyo and took the name Nichiren. He proclaimed the establishment of his teaching and began to spread the teachings of Buddhism.

During the time of propagation, the Daishonin was persecuted by the authorities, priests and believers of other Buddhist schools. Nevertheless, the Daishonin did not retreat no matter what. In fact, he further strengthened his faith. On the verge of being be-headed, at the Tatsunoguchi persecution, it was just as the prophecy in the Lotus Stura that the votary of the Lotus Sutra would be protected by the Buddhist gods. Nichiren Daishonin realized he was the votary of the Latter Day who ‘recited’ the Lotus Sutra with his own life. In 1279, the Daishonin inscribed the Gohonzon, the physical object of devotion, as the true aspect of all living beings and the fundamental practice for all humanity.