Faith is always in your life. A life of faith is not only reciting a sutra or offering a sacrificial devotion. A religious life should make your family happy, moral, and prosperous as well as for your posterity.
Now I am going to give you a simple explanation about the Myo-oh-doh religion and what we live for.
Once there was a man who had a nice box. While he was looking at the box, he wanted to make it nicer. He began to polish it and mounted it with jewels. Furthermore, he made it a decorative wrapping and placed it on a fine stand. After all he felt pleasure in decorating the box till the end of his life. When he was about to die, however, he regretted that he had forgot the contents for the box. Paying no attention to its contents, he spent whole his life just decorating the box.
We are just the same, aren’t we? We are absorbed in getting fine houses, nice dresses, much money etc., to show off during our lifetime. We are struggling for eating to maintain our body. It is because we are to live. But what do we live for?
We are living without knowing our mission. This is just the same as the man who forgot the contents of the box. We are born with a great mission. If we live halfway not carrying out the mission, we would regret much in the afterworld. Buddha said, “You will laugh at a traveler if he doesn’t know his destination. It is just the same as you live with no mission. I feel pity for you, so I teach you the faith.” As we are able to come into the world, we must listen to the faith.
All men carry two wishes. One is spiritual which comes from the soul before birth. The other is physical coming from the living body. It is to eat, to wear, to be rich, to be honored, etc… All these are temporary desires that one may have in this world. The wish which will not change even after death, I call it the mission. In many cases, however, it is hidden by temporary desires. That is why Buddha told us “Sit straight and think over real state of things.” If we devote ourselves to be calm and quiet, our inner voice would tell us ‘Do something good and make others happy!‘
Looking back at our lives, we would be ashamed of our past and feel like throwing ourselves at the foot of the Creator. Our souls will surely suffer when we please ourselves by the sacrifice of others. On the contrary, even if it is tough, we will feel rewarded when we do something for the benefit of others. Why? Because this is the answer for our soul’s calling, to be virtuous in this world, to make past sins clean and to make itself more virtuous to delight others.
The soul is immortal. The body is what the Creator lent a man to cultivate moral character to realize his happiness. After death, man realizes that he has lost everything which he gained in his lifetime. Then he found he had lived in the wrong way. He neither tried to be virtuous, nor to cultivate moral character when he was alive. Now that the body has been burned to ashes, he lost the way to cultivate his soul anymore and nothing remains but his sin.
The soul suffers punishment which deserves sins he had made. His endless greed pushes him down to the hell of starvation. His grudge will torture his soul as though with a sword or with flames. Man cannot get out of these agonies anymore. The only way he can escape from them depends on religious service by his descendants. Man yelled out asking them for their service in vain. However loud he might shout, his descendants cannot hear his voice. Finally, man reaches them in their dreams which just makes his descendant say, “Oh, I had an unpleasant dream last night.” and this would put an end to his wish. Consequently, he is forced to inflict much pain on his descendants to make them feel his agony. Now that things have come to pass, he cries in tears over his lack of virtue before his death.
Following is a story told by Buddha. Once there a man traveling alone through a wide plain. Suddenly he noticed a raging elephant chasing him. He tried to find where to escape in a rush. Then a large tree with many fruits came into his sight. He rushed to the tree to climb up. But there was a deep well at its root and a branch stretched down into it. He hung on the branch until the elephant left. After some time, he noticed a poisonous snake looking fiercely from below with its rolling red tongue. Being frightened, he looked up and found a white and black mouse biting the root of the large tree. Just then he turned his face upwards, when a drop of fruit juice came down into his mouth. It was heavenly sweet. He began to enjoy the drops one after another. Meanwhile the two mice kept on biting the root of the tree. At last he fell into the well and became the prey of the poisonous snake.
We are the same as the traveler above. While we indulge in the evil passions, the roots of life are bitten by white mice during the day and a black mice at night without mercy. As we hesitate either to be virtuous or to enjoy life, our life roots are bitten to death. In the end we might fall into the bottom of despair.
The soul is immortal. It only wishes to repent for our sins, to accumulate virtue, and to be all together happy. That is what life is for. The moment you read or hear the Myo-oh-doh teaching, you should be spiritually awakened. It could be the only chance to start a life of enlightenment. This teaching clarifies the essence of the true life and convinces you through actual proofs.
The Creator’s will is to make all creatures happy. We are born to rejoice together. We ought to train ourselves for this realization. Thereby, we secure true happiness in life.