日本語
 

Rissho Kosei-kai Holds Memorial Services for All War Dead

August 2016

To commemorate the 71st anniversary, on August 15, of the end of the Second World War in Asia, Rissho Kosei-kai held annual memorial services on and around that date in observance of the Day of Repose for the Spirits of the War Dead and the Day of Prayer for Peace. The services were held in the Great Sacred Hall at Rissho Kosei-kai's headquarters in Tokyo and at Dharma centers throughout Japan.

Some 2,000 members gathered in the Great Sacred Hall to mourn and pray for the dead of the Second World War and all other wars and conflicts, and for the swift achievement of lasting world peace. Sixteen young women members from the Kanagawa Division made an offering before the image of the Eternal Buddha Shakyamuni. President-designate Kosho Niwano then led the sutra recitation and recited a prayer for merit transference composed by President Nichiko Niwano. She also offered incense and a paper crane, a symbol of peace in Japan. Then the participants sang the Japanese children's song "Furusato" (Hometown).

After that, Mrs. Noriyo Ohira, a member of the Suginami Dharma Center, testified to her experience of the faith. She described her experience at the age of two of losing her father and elder brother during the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, in 1945. Since her mother was too seriously injured in the bombing to take care of her, Mrs. Ohira was taken in by foster parents in Tokyo but did not get along well with her foster mother. Mrs. Ohira married a man with a daughter by his former wife, who distrusted her father and would not accept her stepmother. Mrs. Ohira said that her relations with her stepdaughter prompted her to reflect on her own childhood and understand the sorrow her foster mother must have felt.

President Nichiko Niwano then offered incense and a paper crane at the altar. In his Dharma talk, he referred to Zen master Ikkyu Sojun (1394-1481) saying to an elderly person wishing to live to the age of 80, 100, or 150, that life and death are no problem for people following the teachings of eternal Truth, since they learn not be obsessed with the birth and death of the physical body. President Niwano said that anyone can attain enlightenment despite delusions. He said also that the human mind is responsible for developing modern science and atomic bombs. He added, "Civilization has developed, but anxieties have multiplied. Even though civilization has developed, as long as the human mind does not develop, peace will not come to us." He explained the importance of abiding completely by the Buddha's teachings every day.  

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