Friday, March 4, 2011

Nichiren Buddhism Chanting Music by Alan Smallwood



Nichiren Buddhism is a branch of Mahāyāna Buddhism based on the teachings of the 13th century Japanese monk Nichiren (1222–1282). Various forms of Nichiren Buddhism have had great influence among certain sections of Japanese society at different times in the country's history, such as among the merchants of Kyoto in Japan's Middle Ages and among some ultranationalists during the pre-World War II era. Nichiren Buddhism is generally noted for its focus on the Lotus Sutra and an attendant belief that all people have an innate Buddha nature and are therefore inherently capable of attaining enlightenment in their current form and present lifetime. It is also noted for positioning itself in opposition to other forms of Japanese Buddhism—in particular the Zen, Pure Land, esoteric, Shingon, and Ritsu schools, which Nichiren saw as deviating from the orthodoxy of Mahayana Buddhism. Nichiren Buddhism is a comprehensive term covering several major schools and many sub-schools, as well as several of Japan's new religions. Nichiren Buddhists believe that the spread of Nichiren's teachings and their effect on practitioners' lives will eventually bring about a peaceful, just, and prosperous society.