Members of Myosenji Buddhist Temple regularly make offerings to the Buddha, the Gohonzon, in the form of food offerings. We also make food offerings to the Gohonzon at our Buddhist altars at home. It is a tradition to offer food to the Buddha. In the video, our Chief Priest is making offerings to the Temple Joju (wooden) Gohonzon (object of worship) during the Oeshiki Ceremony (memorial ceremony for Nichiren Daishonin).
Nichiren Daishonin, the founder of Nichiren Shoshu in 13th century Japan, received many food offerings from believers. We know this because of the many personal Gosho letters he sent to believers thanking them for their food offerings. Below is an excerpt from one of his Gosho letters.
“As you well know, one of the sutras tells us the story of Tokusho Doji, who offered a mud pie to the Buddha and was later reborn as King Ashoka who ruled over most of India. Since the Buddha is worthy of respect, the boy was able to receive this great reward, even though the pie was only mud. However, Shakyamuni Buddha teaches that one who makes offerings to the Votary of the Lotus Sutra in the Latter Day of the Law for even a single day will gain incomparably greater fortune than he would by offering countless treasures to the Buddha for one hundred thousand aeons. How wonderful, then, is your heartfelt sincerity in supporting the Votary of the Lotus Sutra over the years! According to the Buddha’s own words, you are certain to be reborn in the pure land of Eagle Peak. What great good fortune you possess!”In the Gosho, The Person and the Law (MW1 – p.263)