Thu

21

Feb

2013

Heart of the Teachings of Master Honen

This is the best translation of Gohogo (Words of Honen Shonin).  It was translated by Yoko Hayashi, M.Ed. & Joji Atone, Ph.D.     As you may know, Hayashi (Horiuchi) Sensei is a daughter of our former minister, Rev. Myoshun Hayashi.
This is the best translation of Gohogo (Words of Honen Shonin). It was translated by Yoko Hayashi, M.Ed. & Joji Atone, Ph.D. As you may know, Hayashi (Horiuchi) Sensei is a daughter of our former minister, Rev. Myoshun Hayashi.

Starting a New Year's Day, I have uploaded more than 50 videos of "Words of Honen Shonin" every day without fail so far.  I don't know if you realized it, but to complete all 62 Selections from the sayings and writings of our founder is actually my New Year's Resolution!

When I started it, I was not sure if I could complete it..but there are only 11 more days to go. During the time, I received a comment via email as follows;

 

It is so sad that Buddhism for each sect eliminates Americans in the fact that services are in the native tongue of the sect. I am pretty sure that many more people would be involved if the nationality barriers were broken. The people are all very nice but we cannot participate in their services. No ones fault, just the way it is. Too bad. I found this in the Zen Temple in Michigan (Vietnamese), Shin Temple in Las Vegas (Japanese), Amitabha Center in Las Vegas (Chinese) and Thai Temple in California (Thai). Not sure what the answer is.

 

When I read it, I felt sorry for him because those youtube videos which were chanted/subtitled all in Japanese, were not for English-speaking people. But it was for me to study and understand Master Honen's teachings. Every day, I am studying our Master's teaching one by one by chanting, repeating, saying, typing his words in Japanese and thinking them in English so that I can explain more of Jodo Buddhism in English in the future.

 

I'm actually taking time to make video, but thanks to these efforts, I'm getting it.

 

What I found so far, was our Master was one of the most compassionate, kindest, smartest and greatest human-beings in the world!  At the same time, I realized that he was one of human-beings, just like us (I think I am a brave man to say this).  This means not all his words are true.  But we have to understand that all he said to the people in those days were very sincere and true.  

 

Yes, I'm going to take to the heart of teachings of Honen Shonin in the near future as my Dharma-friend Gary encouraged us.

 

It is my belief that any language, culture and religion are supposed to have no barrier and it's always the person who might have the barriers toward other languages, cultures and religions.  Some religions have so strong barrier that they don't listen to other religions, generally. But there is always something good to know from learning other languages, cultures and religions.  They are so related each other and it should be interesting to learn them. So to chant in Japanese or Chinese is never nonsense for English speaking people, but it's good chance to know their cultures...That's my belief and this is what I'm teaching here.

Older version of Gohogo.  Thanks to the generosity by Dr./Bishop Joji Atone and Bukkyo University, these books are available here at Koloa.  Please contact me if you'd like to have this book.
Older version of Gohogo. Thanks to the generosity by Dr./Bishop Joji Atone and Bukkyo University, these books are available here at Koloa. Please contact me if you'd like to have this book.
Ttranslated by Rev. Dwight R. Nakamura and edited by Richard Kollmar. This is also a great book but no longer available.
Ttranslated by Rev. Dwight R. Nakamura and edited by Richard Kollmar. This is also a great book but no longer available.

Write a comment

Comments: 2
  • #1

    Gary (Sunday, 24 February 2013 06:58)

    Dear Ishikawa Sensei-Thank you for such a wonderful post. And thank you again for taking the time and effort to post the Gohogo on Youtube. If we have sincerity in our hearts, it does not matter which language we speak, we should work that much harder, not only in our own practice, but for the benefit of others. My advice to those new to Honen's teachings: start small and let it grow out from there and never give up-it is worth the journey.

  • #2

    Kosen (Monday, 25 February 2013 14:17)

    Thank you very much for your comment. This post was possible thanks to your encouragements and some people who gave me some comments. Now it is my sincerest wish Jodoshu can support your willingness to help for the benefit of others.