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The Liturgy of

Nichiren Shoshu

Nichiren Shoshu Head Temple


Taiseki-ji Edition
Priest, We offer the Second and Third Prayers in
Introduction To Gongyo order to repay our debt of gratitude to the Three
The Significance of Gongyo Treasures. The Fourth Prayer is to pray for the
salvation of, and repay our debt of gratitude to
In Nichiren Shoshii, the most important signifi- all existence, as well as to pray for the attainment
cance of Gongyo can be found within the titles of Kosen-rufu. The Fifth Prayer correlates to our
and meanings of the actual sentences of the repaying of our debt of gratitude to our parents,
Silent Prayers, The First Prayer is an offering to the ancestors and again, all existence.
Shoten Zenjin, who are nourished by the flavor of
the Law of My6ho-Renge-Ky6, The Second Prayer The third Significance is that it is only this Gongyo
is an offering to the Dai-Gohonzon, the only true which is based on the transmission of the inheri-
and absolute, o11hodox Object of Worship of the tance and ceremonies (kegi) of the Daishonin'5
Essential Teachings, which is the embodiment of Buddhism. It is the basis of faith for the only truly
the Person and the Law. We conduct the Third significant practice in the age of llJappo, as taught
Prayer as an offering to the Treasure of the Buddha. by the Buddha.
Nichiren Daish6nin and the Treasure ofthe Priest-
Nikk6 Sh6nin, Nichimoku Shonin and all the other The fourth Significance is that when we do Gongy6,
successive High Priests of Nichiren Sh6shl1. In the we bathe ourselves in the benefits ofthe Gohonzon
Fourth Prayer, we pray for the attainment of the and develop life conditions of happiness. Gongy6
Great Aspiration of Kosen-rufu, the eradication of is the source and generative power through which
our past slanders against the Law and our enlight- we attain Buddhahood.
enmentin this and all future lives. In the Fifth Praver
weprayforall ofourdeceascd ancestors. comme~c­ The fifth significance is that through our daily prac-
ing with our fathers, mothers, hrothers and sisters, tice of Gongyo, we are able to polish our minds and
and conclude with prayers for the salvation of all bodies, eradicate the slanders from our impure and
existence. sullied hearts and bodies, and transform our lives,
purifying the six senses. Herein lies the importance
The second Significance of doing Gongyo is the of Gongy6,
offering of our sincere requitals of gratitude to the
Three Treasures of the Buddha. the Law and the We carry out our practice of Gongy6 as disciples

i ii
and believers of Nichiren Daishonin, understand- strongly and correctly, dearly pronouncing each
ing and basing our practice on the aforementioned word, syllable and letter. Wl1en reading the Silent
significances, thereby amassing great fortune in Prayers, one should fully concentrate on Sincerely
our lives while striving for the accomplishment of offering these prayers to the Gohonzon.
the Daishonin's original aspiration for Kosen-rufu.
During Gongyo. it sometimes occurs that one
Attitude and Posture During Gongyo has random or distracted thoughts. However, we
need not be swayed by such thoughts, but should
One should have a correct appearance, posture rather have strong confidence that if we practice
and attitude when offering the recitation of this Buddhist training 10 this marvelous Gohonzon
Gongyo and Daimoku to the Gohonzon. One with correct faith, without a doubt, we will all be
may sit either in the traditional Japanese "setza" able to manifest the greatest of benefits in our
fashion, cross-legged in western style, or in a lives. Day by day, we should carry out our practice
chair. However, what is important to remem- with a fresh spirit, and put forth our utmost effort
ber is that no matter which style one chooses, to do the best and most concentrated Gongyo
Gongyo should always be done out of profound possible.
respect for the Gohonzon. Therefore, one should
sit up straight, placing the right and left hands As a standard rule, we conduct Gongyo twice daily,
together centrally on the chest in prayer, with once in the morning and once in the evening.
both elbows resting evenly against the sides of Wbile there is no set or particular time that we
the body. If one prefers to use a chair, then both must do Gongyo, we should choose a time that is
feet should be properly touching the ground. most convenient according to lifestyle, and exert
One should not sit in such casual manners as sit- ourselves to make Gongyo the most important
ting askew, having legs crossed or the like. aspect of daily life.

Wben reciting Daimoku or Gongyo, eyes should be


focused on the character" My() ,. in the center ofthe
Gohonzon; one's voice should have a speed that is
properly matched to the rhythm of one's breathing
and be of a medium volume. One should chant

iii iv
Pronunciation Guide \,-c

Here is a guide to Japanese pronunciation. ~ ;;g


shari - hotsu ( two beats)
Vowels Consonants i.PJ. ~
hara - mitsu (two beats)
a as in father ch as in cherry f~i1Jj; S (41\
shaka muni - butsu (three beats)
e as in let g as in go
,Cr :fi
as in machine as in just Siiigi, p.22 (one beat)
0,0 as in post s as in say
u,u as in rule sh as in shell
y as in yes ts as in gets Because each syllable or group of syllables is a
ai as in "I" z as in needs word or phrase which contains profound meaning,
ui as in Louie r as in the mispronunciation of a word will change the mean-
ei as in "lei" Spanish name ing of the sutra. Hence, each syllable should be
Ricardo pronounced separately and distinctly. Words have
been hyphenated to aid rhythm and pronuncia-
'h' is always sounded-note the difference between tion. These instructions are intended as guidelines.
yaku and hyaku. Long marks over the 0 (0) and u To master Gongyo, there is no substitute for learn-
eli) do not change their pronunciation, but indicate ing from one who has mastered it.
a spelling differentiation in Japanese. The sign, ,
indicates the elision of two words or syllables, e.g.,
on pg. 1, "but chi-e" is an elision of "butsu chi-e."
On page 22, at the beginning ofthe "Jigage" section,
the first syllable ofthe elidedword "bud'···· rai" is pro-
nouncedlike the tlrst syllable ofthe word "Buddha,"
except that the "d'" is clipped short. Hyphens
are used to divide words into one beat syllables.
There will generally be one Chinese character per
beat in the rhythm of Gongyo, with the following
exceptions:
v vi
How to do Gongyo
(first twO lines of pal't B), omit remainder of part
Gongyo consists of a series of prayers. Recite
B and recite part C, bowing at the end of part C.
all five prayers in the morning. In the evening,
Chant three prolonged Daimoku (Hiki-Daimoku,
recite the second. third and fifth prayers only. For
which is pronounced Namu-Myoho·Renge-Kyo,
convenience, the sutra book is divided into four i.e.. chant Namu, breath, chant JVlyoho-Renge-
sections: Ky{), Namu, breath, chant Myoho-Renge-Kyo,
Namu, breath. chant My{)hf)-Renge-Kyo). Bow.
A Excerpt from the Hoben chapter, p. 1-4. chant Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo three times and
B - Chogyo or prose section of the Jury() chapter, while bowed. offer the tlrst Silent Prayer. (I11e
p. 5-22. bell is not rung during the first prayer.)
C -Jigage or verse section of the Juryo chapter, p.
22-31. Second Prayer
D -Silent Prayers, p. 32-37.
Face the Gohonzon, sound bell seven times.
Here is the order of recitation. Recite part A, sound bell three times. Recite
parts B, C, chant three prolonged Daimoku and
First Prayer bow. Sound bell tlve times, chant Nam-Myoho-
Renge-Kyo three times. bow and offer the second
Face the Gohonzon, chant Nam-Myoho-Renge- Silent Prayer. This is the only time that the whole
Kyo three times (Daimoku Sansho), bowing sutra is recited straight through. (The places indi-
in reverence to the Three Treasures of True cated for bowing in the first prayer are the same
Buddhism (the True Buddha, Nichiren Daishonin, for all five prayers. The number of times the bell
the True Law, Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo and the should be struck is always the same as indicated
Priest, i.e., Nikko Shonin, Nichimoku Shonin and above, except as indicated in the fifth prayer.)
each of the successive High Pliests). Face east, Third Prayer
chant Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo three times, bow,
and recite part A. The portion of part A from Sound bell, recite part A. Sound bell. recite first
"Sbo-i s!Jo-!JiY to "nyo ze bon-makku-kyo to" is two lines of part B, omit remainder of B and recite
always repeated three times. Bow after the third part C. Chant three prolonged Daimoku, sound
recitation. Recite the title of the Juryo chapter bell, chant Nam-Myoho-Renge-Ky6 three times,
uit viii
and offer the third Silent Prayer.

Fourth Prayer
Sound hell, recite part A. Sound hell, recite first
two lines of part B, omit remainder of B and recite
part C. Chant three prolonged Daimoku, sound
bell, chant Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo three times,
and offer the fourth Silent Prayer.

Fifth Prayer
Sound bell, recite part A. Sound bell, recite first The Liturgy of
two lines of part B, omit remainder of B and recite
part C. Sound bell seven times while beginning Nichiren Shoshu
the chanting of Daimoku (Nam-Myoho-Renge-
Kyo). To end the recitation ofDaimoku, sound bell
with each syllable of the last Myoho-Renge-Kyo
and bow. Chant Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo three
more times, and while bowed, offer the fifth Silent
Prayer. Sound hell and conclude Gongyo by chant-
ing Nam-My6ho-Renge-Kyo three times and bow-
ing.

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to "Nyo ze hon-makku-kyo to" three times.)
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Bu ka 0 shL Hyaku-sen-man- Rai - shi ga sho, Ga i butsu-gen.


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t~ ~o B ~ tio ~
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25 26
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27 28
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29 30
t,-
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Silent Prayers
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Ga jo chi shu-jo.
"'"7 ,':;'-

fr ~ First Prayer
Gyodo fu gyo do. Offering to the Shoten Zenjin
i' \\ L" - 2-
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Zui o sho ka do. I sincerely pray that Daibontenno,
i Lft iii Taishakutenno, Dainittenno, Daigattenno,
I ses -- shu -ju ho. Daimyojotenno and aU the other Shoten
l' L- -tf- Zenjin, sworn guardians of the Lotus Sutra,
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may increasingly be nourished by the power
0

Mai ji sa ze nen.
oL\1.yoh6-Renge-Kyo, so that they will be able
L~- 0
to continuaUyprotect those who embrace True
I ga ryo shu-jo. Buddhism.
i;:\~ -j t,'- t -') C'·~

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Toku nyu mu-jo-do.
Ii f~ 0
Chant: Nam-1'41yoho-Renge-Kyo, Nam-
iHyoho-Renge-Kyo, Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo
Soku jo - ju bus-shin.

31 32
Second Prayer Third Prayer
Offering to the Dai-Gohonzon Offering to Nichiren Daishonin and
the Successive High Priests
I express my sincere devotion to the Oai- I express my sincere devotion to the Founder of
Gohonzon-the soul of the ]uryo chapter of True Buddhism, Nichiren Daishonin. the bound-
the Essential Teachings and the Supreme Law lessly compassionate Buddha who revealed the
concealed within its depths, the fusion of the True Cause of Original Enlightenment; who pos-
realm of the Original Infmite Law and the sesses the Three Enlightened Properties, and whose
inherent wisdom within the Buddha of Kuon Three Enlightened Properties comprise His single
being; whose beneficence transcends the Three
Ganjo, the manifestation of the Buddha of
Existences; and who possesses the Three Virtues of
Intrinsically Perfect Wisdom, the etemal coex-
sovereign, teacher, and parent. I also express my
istence ofthe Ten W orIds, the entity of Ichinen heartfelt grJtitude for His beneficence and pray
Sanzen, the oneness of the Person and the that His profound benevolent power may ever more
Law, and the Supreme Object of Worship of widely prevaiL
the High Sanctuary. I also express my heartfelt
Cbant: Nam-illyobo-Renge-Kyo, Nam-
gratitude for Its beneficence and pray that Its Myobo-Renge-Kyo, Narn-Atlyobo-Renge-Kyo
profound benevolent power may ever more
I express my sincere devotion to the Second High
widely prevaiL
Priest Byakuren Ajari Nikko Shonin, the first among
the Treasure of the Priest and the Great Master
of Propagation who directly received the Living
Chant: Nam-Myobo-Renge-Kyo, Nam- Essence ofthe True Buddha from Nichiren Daishi:inin.
Myobo-Renge-Kyo, Nam-Alyobo-Renge-Kya I also express my heartfelt gratitude for His benefi-
cence and pray that His profound benevolent power
may ever more widely prevaiL
Cbant: Nam-lvlyobo-Renge-Kyo, Nam-
Alyl5bo-Renge-Kyo, Nanh'l;Iyoho-Renge-Kyo
33 34
I express my sincere devotion to the Third Fourth Prayer
High Priest Niidakyo Ajari Nichimoku Shonin, Prayer For Worldwide Propagation
the Master of the Seat of the Law, who
directly inherited the Living Essence from I sincerely pray for the attainment of the Great
Nikko Shonin. I also express my heartfelt Aspiration of the True Buddha - Kosen-rufu,
gratitude for His beneficence and pray that the worldwide propagation of the Buddhism
His profound benevolent power may ever ofthe True Cause through the power ofMyoho-
more widely prevail. Renge-Kyo.

(Silently): Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo, Nam- Chant: Nam-jl~J}oho-Renge-Kyo, Narn-Myoho-


jlJyohi5-Renge-Kyo, Nam-ll/~yoho-Renge-Kyo Renge-Kyo, Narn-ltIyobo-Renge-Kyo

I express my sincere devotion to the Fourth I pray to eradicate my many past and present
HighPriestNichido Shon1n, the Fifth HighPriest slanders against the taw, and to continually
Xichigyo Shonin and all the successive High purify and deepen my faith and practice so
Priests, who have inherited and correctly hand- that I may attain enlightenment in this and all
ed down the Living Essence. I also express my future existences.
heartfelt gratitude for Their beneficence and
pray that Their profound benevolent power (Olfer personal prayers here.)
may ever more widely prevail.
Chant: Nam-llJyoho-Renge-Kyo, Nam-i},lyoho-
Chant: Nam-iHyohi5-Renge-Kyo, Nam-Myohi5- Renge-Kyo, Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo
Renge-Kyo, Nam-ll~l'ohi5-Renge-Kyo

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Fifth Prayer
Memorial Prayers for the Deceased

I pray that all my deceased relatives, all


deceased Nichiren Shoshu believers, and all
others who have departed this life may attain
Buddhahood through the power of Myoh6-
Renge-Kyo. Nam-Myoh6-Renge-Kyo.

(Offer special memorial prayers while


sounding the bell continuously.)

Chant: Nam-llfyoho-Renge-Kyo, Nam-Myoho-


Renge-Kyo, Nal1hlfyoho-Renge-Kyo

May the impartial benefits of Myoh6-Renge-


Kyo spread equally to the farthest reaches
of the universe so that I, together with all
other existence, may attain the tranquil state
of enlightened life.

Chant: Nam-illyoho-Renge-Kyo, Nam-Myoho-


Renge-Kyo, Nam-Myohi5-Renge-KJlo

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