Dharma World

November-December 2002, Volume 29

November-December 2002, Volume 29(PDF)

Roundtable Discussion at the World Congress of the International Association for Religious Freedom


Problems the Sangha Must Tackle by Nikkyo Niwano

This essay is part of a continuing series of translations from a volume of inspirational writings by the late founder of Rissho Kosei-kai. Dharma World will continue to publish these essays because of their lasting value as guidance for the practice of one’s faith in daily life.

Nikkyo Niwano, the late founder of the Buddhist association Rissho Kosei-kai, was an honorary president of the World Conference on Religion and Peace (WCRP) and was honorary chairman of Shinshuren (Federation of New Religious Organizations of Japan) at the time of his death in October 1999.

The Fertile Field of the Heart and Mind by Nichiko Niwano

We are like fields that generate merits. These fields of merits are none other than the fields of the heart and mind within each of us. The more we cultivate these fields, and give them water and light, the richer the harvest we will gain.

Nichiko Niwano is president of Rissho Kosei-kai and the Niwano Peace Foundation, a president of the World Conference on Religion and Peace (WCRP), and vice-chairman of Shinshuren (Federation of New Religious Organizations of Japan).

Conference on the Lotus Sutra

A Conversation about the Lotus Sutra and Zen by Stephen Covell

Stephen Covell is currently a visiting scholar at the University of Tokyo, where he is working on a project concerning Buddhism and morals education in Japan. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton University in 2001. His dissertation was on contemporary Japanese Buddhism. In fall 2003 he will begin teaching as an assistant professor at Western Michigan University.

Interfaith Encounter

Gethsemani Encounter II by James Wiseman

This article recounts an important dialogue between Buddhists and Christians that was held this past spring. The author is a Benedictine monk of Saint Anselm’s Abbey in Washington, D.C., and chairman of the theology department at the Catholic University of America. He participated in a conference on the Lotus Sutra that was sponsored by Rissho Kosei-kai in July 1994.


Shakespeare and Globalization by Peter Milward

Globalization is not just something that affects us in today’s world. Indeed, with the great voyages of discovery of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, Shakespeare’s age was one in which men thought to put “a girdle round about the earth.” This article takes a look at what globalization was then and what it should be today.

Peter Milward is a Jesuit priest and former dean of the Faculty of Modern Culture at Tokyo Junshin Women’s College, professor emeritus of Sophia University in Tokyo, and chairman of its Renaissance Institute. Fr. Milward is the most celebrated Shakespearean scholar in Japan and is the author of more than 300 books and booklets on religion, literature, and culture.

Talismans of Hope in War-torn Sri Lanka by Bardwell Smith

An American scholar takes seven stones with him on a trip to Sri Lanka, and places all but one in what to him are important locations in a symbolic prayer for peace and reconciliation. The seventh stone, however, finds a different home, but one that is as meaningful and significant as the others.

Bardwell Smith is John W. Nason professor of Asian studies emeritus, Carleton College, Northfield, Minnesota. His research field is Buddhism and the social order in Sri Lanka and Japan. Professor Smith has edited a number of books dealing with Asian religions in South and East Asia. This essay is a revised portion of a longer article that appeared in a volume of essays, Excursions and Explorations: Cultural Encounters between Sri Lanka and the United States, Tissa Jayatilaka, ed. The volume was published by the Fulbright Commission in Colombo, Sri Lanka, earlier this year.

The Stories of the Lotus Sutra

The Parable of the Vehicles by Gene Reeves

The Buddha, like any teacher, has to use appropriate means in order to lead others to the realization of their own potential. In chapter 3 of the Lotus Sutra, this is illustrated by the Buddha’s tale of how a father uses his wits and skillful means to persuade his children to leave a burning house.

Gene Reeves, former dean of the Meadville/Lombard Theological School in Chicago, recently retired from teaching at the University of Tsukuba, where he taught Buddhism and American Studies. He is currently doing research, teaching, and writing on the Lotus Sutra at Rissho Kosei-kai in Tokyo.

Buddhist Living

Living to the Fullest

A former maintenance technician at a nuclear-power plant decided to change his job and devote his life to being of service to others. Luckily, supported by family and friends, he now works in a nursing home, helping others–as well as himself–to live life to the fullest.

Buddhist Sculpture

A Buddhist Statue Dressed in Elegant Robes by Takeshi Kuno

Japanese Buddhist art includes several statues that were carved naked and then clothed in beautiful silk robes. This statue of the bodhisattva Jizo, from Nara’s Denkoji, is exceptionally beautiful, with its expression of great compassion.

Takeshi Kuno, formerly a director of the Tokyo National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, is now director-general of the Institute of Buddhist Art Research in Tokyo.

Gotama Buddha (57)

Falling Ill along the Way of the Journey by Hajime Nakamura

Upon leaving Ambapali’s grove, the Buddha went with Ananda to Beluva, but there he became very ill. When begged by Ananda to give teachings, he said that Truth is the possession of all people. He added that all that is necessary is to practice and meditate upon the Truth.

The late Hajime Nakamura, an authority on Indian philosophy, was president of the Eastern Institute in Tokyo and a professor emeritus of the University of Tokyo at the time of his death in October 1999. This ongoing series is a translation of Gotama Budda, vol. 2, Tokyo, Shunjusha, 1992.

The Threefold Lotus Sutra: A Modern Commentary (67)

The Sutra of the Lotus Flower of the Wonderful Law
Chapter 5: The Parable of the Herbs (4) by Nikkyo Niwano

This is the sixty-seventh installment of a detailed commentary on the Threefold Lotus Sutra by the late founder of Rissho Kosei-kai, Rev. Nikkyo Niwano.

Dharma World

  1. Spring 2024, Volume 51

    Knowing Contentment

  2. Autumn 2023, Volume 50

    Religion and the Family

  3. Spring 2023, Volume 50

    Religion’s Role in Peacebuilding

  4. Autumn 2022, Volume 49

    Religion and Happiness

  5. Spring 2022, Volume 49

    The Impact of Cyberspace on a Variety of Religious Traditions and Practices

  6. Autumn 2021, Volume 48

    Religion's Potential for Advancing Sustainable Development

  7. Spring 2021, Volume 48

    What Is Prayer?

  8. Autumn 2020, Volume 47

    Religion’s Role in Building an Inclusive Society

  9. Spring 2020, Volume 47

    Violence in Buddhism

  10. Autumn 2019, Volume 46

    Manga, Anime, and Contemporary Religion

  11. Spring 2019, Volume 46

    Is Emptiness the Goal?

  12. July-December 2018, Volume 45

    The Buddhahood of Plants and Trees: The Environment and Buddha-Nature

  13. January-June 2018, Volume 45

    Buddhism’s One Vehicle in a World of Many Religions

  14. July-December 2017, Volume 44

    Religions Tackling Extremism

  15. January-June 2017, Volume 44

    Religion and Animals

  16. October-December 2016, Volume 43

    Features: Listening

  17. July-September 2016, Volume 43

    Contemporary Ideas about Karma

  18. April-June 2016, Volume 43

    Buddhism and Food

  19. January-March 2016, Volume 43

    Dual Religious Identity: Can One Practice Two Religions?

  20. October-December 2015, Volume 42

    The Modern Significance of Meditative Practices in Religions

  21. July-September 2015, Volume 42

    Religious Rituals and Their Meaning for Today

  22. April-June 2015, Volume 42

    Religion's Contributions to Society

  23. January-March 2015, Volume 42

    Cultivating Hearts That Welcome the Other

  24. October-December 2014, Volume 41

    Buddhism and Language

  25. July-September 2014, Volume 41

    Life After Death

  26. April-June 2014, Volume 41

    Building an East Asian Community: Roles of Religions

  27. January-March 2014, Volume 41

    Aging Societies and Religion

  28. October-December 2013, Volume 40

    Nuclear Power and Contemporary Religion

  29. July-September 2013, Volume 40

    Where Does the Buddha Live Now?

  30. April-June 2013, Volume 40

    Modern Meanings of Festivals

  31. January-March 2013, Volume 40

    Transforming Greed

  32. October-December 2012, Volume 39

    Religions Coping with Prejudice

  33. July-September 2012, Volume 39

    The Significance of Religious Communities

  34. April-June 2012, Volume 39

    Buddhist Teachings on Spiritual Liberation

  35. January-March 2012, Volume 39

    The Meaning of Modern Pilgrimage

  36. October-December 2011, Volume 38

    The Evolution of Funerals in Japan

  37. July-September 2011, Volume 38

    Buddhism in North America

  38. April-June 2011, Volume 38

    Religion and the Power of Women

  39. January-March 2011, Volume 38

    What Is True Wealth?

  40. October-December 2010, Volume 37

    Dialogue Draws Religions Closer

  41. July-September 2010, Volume 37

    Tackling the Question "What Is the Lotus Sutra?"

  42. April-June 2010, Volume 37

    Religion's Role in Abolishing Nuclear Weapons

  43. January-March 2010, Volume 37

    Help in Overcoming Alienation

  44. July-September 2009, Volume 36

    Religion and Prayer

  45. July-September 2009, Volume 36

    Religion and Media

  46. April-June 2009, Volume 36

    Religion and Health

  47. January-March 2009, Volume 36

    The Changing Forms of the Family and the Role of Religion

  48. October-December 2008, Volume 35

    The Meaning of Giving in the Contemporary World

  49. July-September 2008, Volume 35

    Buddhism in the Face of Environmental Crisis

  50. April-June 2008, Volume 35

    The Many Forms of the Bodhisattva Kuan-yin

  51. January-March 2008, Volume 35

    Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution

  52. October-December 2007, Volume 34

    Buddhism and Bioethics

  53. July-September 2007, Volume 34

    Respect for Ancestors

  54. April-June 2007, Volume 34

    Self-Examination and Peace Work

  55. January-March 2007, Volume 34

    Buddhism and Social Responsibility: Boddhisattva Practice Today

  56. October-December 2006, Volume 33

    Buddishm in Dialogue

  57. July-September 2006, Volume 33

    Religions Working for Peace

  58. April-June 2006, Volume 33

    Creating the World of the One Vehicle: The Centennial of the Birth of Rev. Nikkyo Niwano

  59. January-February 2006, Volume 33

    The Human Condition and Religion: A Global Future?

  60. November-December 2005, Volume 32

    Remembering Hiroshima

  61. September-October 2005, Volume 32

    Spirituality and Development

  62. July-August 2005, Volume 32

    Women in Contemporary Japanese Religion and Society

  63. May-June 2005, Volume 32

    Rissho Kosei-kai 67th

  64. March-April 2005, Volume 32

    "Thousand Buddhas," Sanbanggulsa Temple, South Korea

  65. January-February 2005, Volume 32

    Emerging Forms of Spirituality

  66. November-December 2004, Volume 31

    Peace Building Through Multi-Religious Cooperation

  67. September-October 2004, Volume 31

    The Increasing Importance of Dialogue and Cooperation

  68. July-August 2004, Volume 31

    Paths to Reconciliation

  69. May-June 2004, Volume 31

    Religion in Crisis

  70. March-April 2004, Volume 31

    Spiritual Friendship

  71. January-February 2004, Volume 31

    Resolving Conflict

  72. November-December 2003, Volume 30

    Dividing Good From Evil

  73. September-October 2003, Volume 30

    Common Truths: Cooperation Among Religions

  74. July-August 2003, Volume 30

    Niwano Peace Foundation

  75. May-June 2003, Volume 30

    Religionists United in Prayer for Peace

  76. March-April 2003, Volume 30

    Life is Larger Than Globalization

  77. January-February 2003, Volume 30

    Emerging Forms of Spirituality

  78. November-December 2002, Volume 29

    Roundtable Disscussion at the World Congress of the International Association for Religious Freedom

  79. September-October 2002, Volume 29

    Sixth Assembly of the Asian Conference on Religion and Peace, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

  80. July-August 2002, Volume 29

    The Most Reverend Samuel Ruiz Garcia, Recipient of the 19th Niwano Peace Prize

  81. May-June 2002, Volume 29

    National Treasure Tapestry Illustrating Shakyamuni Sermon to the Faithful

  82. March-April 2002, Volume 29

    Celebration of the Anniversary of Shakyamuni's Birth

  83. January-February 2002, Volume 29

    Religious Delegates Gather in New York for WCRP Symposium