by Daisaku Ikeda
To fly, a plane needs the extra push it gets by acceleration down a runway. To get good grades in school, you need the extra push of study before a test.
Whatever you do, to achieve something better, to reach a higher level, you need a push.
Buddhism teaches practice for oneself and practice for others. If either one is lacking, you cannot practice properly.
The Gohonzon is the concrete manifestation of the very existence of Nichiren Daishonin, who taught kosen-rufu. Because of that, if you only practice gongyo and chant the daimoku and don’t take any other action for the sake of kosen rufu or improving your own life, the Gohonzon will not have its true, full effect.
If, however, you take actions to achieve kosen-rufu, they will serve as that extra push for your own life and help you leap to higher and higher states of mind in your gongyo and chanting as well. And it is only natural that the energy you acquire through the gongyo practice for yourself will be channeled back into your activities for others, for kosen-rufu.
The fact is that the practice of gongyo and your actions in service of kosen-rufu will become one, and together they will unlock the infinite power of the Mystic Law in your life.
In Buddhism, practice is faith. That means action is faith, and without action there can be no true faith. The action I speak of is the way of practice for oneself and for others that is taught in Nichiren Daishonin’s writings.
Action is the source of blessings and merits. In propagating the teachings, for example, whether the person you are presenting the teachings to arouses faith or not is his problem. The effects of our action of propagating will vary, depending on the person’s capacities and other conditions.
There is no need at all to rejoice or lament over each effect. You can be proud that you have practiced the truest, most wonderful law of life in the universe to the best of your ability and go forward with your head held high. One who has acted for the sake of kosen-rufu is already a great victor in life.
The words "the heads of those who cause affliction will be split in seven pieces" are written on the Gohonzon.
This is a warning that it is wrong to seek to harm this law of your own being.
Abandoning the teachings or slandering them are self-destructive actions that are bound to split you apart.
We also find the words "those who make offerings will acquire blessings surpassing the Buddha’s ten names."
This forceful statement tells us that the merits of one who make offerings to the Gohonzon and spreads the teaching will be far greater than the magnificent merits of the one who makes offerings to Shakyamuni Buddha.
This is a promise that our personal microcosm will absorb the nourishment of all the blessings in the macrocosm, the whole universe, and be elevated to a state of existence of the highest happiness itself.Thus we know that the children of the Buddha who strive for kosen-rufu are each guaranteed to attain the ultimate degree of happiness. There is no one who will be more blessed.