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Buddhism: Turning East to Pray

Sept 10 blog sm

Whenever you yearn for me, Nichiren, look toward the sun which rises in the morning and the moon which appears in the evening. I will invariably be reflected in the sun and the moon.

written by Nichiren Daishonin as guidance to believer in 13th century Japan

Nichiren Shoshu Buddhists perform Gongyo, the sutra recitation, in the morning and evening. In the morning for the first prayer, we turn to the East (as Myosenji’s Chief Priest and Assistant Priest are doing in the picture above). The 9th High Priest Nichiu Shonin (15th century Japan) explained that part of the meaning of the first prayer of Morning Gongyo is that we face the sun as it rises in the east each morning to express reverence for the forms in which the Buddha of Intrinsically Perfect Wisdom, who appeared in Mappo as Nichiren Daishonin, unceasingly bestows benefit throughout the three existences.

Buddhism’s Beliefs & Origins

Visit Myosenji Temple this Saturday, September 10th, for a brief video presentation and lecture on Buddhist beliefs by our Chief Priest, Rev Sakabe.

  • Learn how to chant Nam Myoho Renge Kyo and properly use the Juzu Beads, Buddhist prayer beads.
  • Q&A with our Chief Priest.
  • The meeting starts at 2:00 pm and concludes around 3:15 pm. Open to the public.

If you have decided to become a Buddhist or are interested in learning how to become a Buddhist, after Saturday’s meeting (about 3:30 pm) Rev Sakabe will be performing the Acceptance of the Precept Ceremony, the ceremony where you become a Buddhist.


Excerpted: Nichiren Shoshu Basics of Practice, Chapters 4 and 5.