HONOLULU MYOHOJI MISSION
Honolulu Myohoji Mission was established in 1930 by Bishop Nisshu Kobayashi of the Kenpon Hokke-Order in Japan. In May of 1954, Venerable Rev. Nittatsu Fujii of Nihonzan Myohoji offered a set of Busshari (Shakyamuni Buddha’s Relics).
Chanting of the Mindfulness Meditation and Namu Myoho Renge Kyo
An Inquiry Into the Buddhism Called Mindfulness
Forty years have passed and what is called mindfulness in Europe and the America, which is a meditative technique, whose fundamental truth for its practice is shikan, is reimported into Japan. Mindfulness seeks the meditative experience of the elimination of stress to respond to the needs of stressful modern society. This meditative technique, which is based on the traditional shikan of Theravada Buddhism, has done away with the religious observances of conversion to and worship of the Buddha, and it is applied and practiced as a psychological therapeutic method. Mindfulness refers to awareness. Mindfulness is this meditative experience.
While concentrating and focusing our consciousness on our breathing (shi), and by observing what transpires during that period (kan), we leave our idealistic speculations and take notice of the present moment of now. This is the meditative experience. Through this experience, we are released from the stress (illusions) that afflict that mind and body (Jon Kabat-Zinn, Mindfulness ni Motozuita Stress Kanwaho (MBSR), 1979).
The Mindfulness of our founder St. Nichiren
The chanting of the sacred title is the meditative experience of chanting Namu Myoho Renge Kyo. That technique is described in the Kanjin Honzon Sho of St. Nichiren (13th century). And its central topic is observing our consciousness as a meditative experience. Indeed, the chanting of Namu Myoho Renge Kyo is mindfulness.
St. Nichiren called the chanting of Namu Myoho Renge Kyo, kanjin (observation). We observe our ego consciousness and become aware of the ten realms (the worlds of hell, hungry spirits, animals, asuras [fighting devils], men, heaven, hearers, cause knowers, bodhisattvas, Buddhas). That technique is called projecting our own consciousness on the mirror of mind.
Since the ego consciousness is that state of suffering where the continuum of memory is projecting on the mirror of the mind, St. Nichiren says to chant the Namu Myoho Renge Kyo to escape from that suffering. The chanting of the sacred title is to project Namu Myoho Renge Kyo onto the polished mirror of the mind. That is why through that observation the ego consciousness is separated from the continuum of memory (illusion), and if there are no waves on the mirror of the mind, we no longer worry about this or that, and a consciousness state of no thought can be induced.
The meditative experience through the chanting of Namu Myoho Renge Kyo is mindfulness. When we read this experience from the literature of Buddhism, since the attainment of Buddhahood (Buddha world) through chanting the Namu Myoho Renge Kyo is a spiritual (wondrous) matter, it cannot become a part of our consciousness. That is why St. Nichiren stressed the peaceful state of belief and told us to guide ourselves to the state of consciousness of non-discrimination through faith. Moreover, the mindfulness through the chanting of the Namu Myoho Renge Kyo becomes an object for our consciousness until the level of a healthy loving mind (bodhisattva world). Indeed by becoming aware of a healthy state of consciousness, we aim for the attainment of Buddhahood, and the faith and practice for Buddhahood is born. This is a traditional Buddhist practice, the world of the two paths of practice and learning.
By Rev. Kyoshun Kageyama
Revised by Rev. Takamasa Yamamura
Translated by Dean Makinodan.
Rev. Takamasa Yamamura
July, 1993 English language training, Wimborne Kings school. England
March 31, 2003 M.A. in music Graduate school of Showa University of Music. Japan
October, 2006 Graduated from Santa Cecilia Conservatory of Music Rome, Italy. Earned Diploma in Music.
May 19, 2008 Installed into Ministerial Rank. (Nichiren-Buddhism, Japan)
September, 2008 Instructor of the retreat in Renko-ji Temple (Milan, Italy)
May, 2009~July, 2009 Training as an Overseas Minister. (Sarnath, India)
Currently, Head Minister of Honolulu Myohoji Temple.
Italian, Japanese, English
According to Nichiren Buddhist tradition, we are born with two Buddhist deities on our shoulders. Because the Buddha knows that this world is full of suffering, he sends us two deities to protect us from various accidents and misfortune so we can live better lives. One deity is called Doshoten and the other is called Domyoten. Have you ever had the experience where you almost get hit by a car, but you manage to avoid the accident? Or where you want to try and do something, but you have a strange feeling about it, so you don’t do it. And afterwards you realize that what you wanted to do was very dangerous and you were fortunate not to have done it? These two deities are protecting and guiding you. When we realize their presence we can appreciate to their guidance and benefit from their protection. The protective power of these two deities become stronger the more we chant Namu Myoho Renge Kyo. It may be hard to believe but actually, many people have been saved by the merits of Namu Myoho Renge Kyo.
Worshipping our ancestors is part of our custom. After living in Hawaii, I sense that young Americans do not pay much attention to their ancestors. I also sense that they are not making food or water offerings to their ancestors. This is probably influenced by Christianity
In Christianity, the belief is that Adam and Eve were created by God, and we are their descendants, and have nothing to do with our ancestors. How do Buddhists think? We have a father and a mother. The lives of both our fathers and mothers come together, and we are a product of this union. The same goes for our parents. They are descended from our grandparents. Our lives go back to the beginning of mankind. Life has continued, and the lineage has never been broken. The Japanese say that we are linked to our ancestors, and we are grateful for that.
- To seek the spiritual happiness of all humankind
- To make a better and peaceful community in Hawaii
We always strive to serve society and by so doing, we will contribute to the development of humankind.
Furthermore, our efforts will add to the value of Hawaiian Society’s existence.
- Jan. 1, Tue. 10 a.m. New Year's Service
- Feb. 3, Sun. 10 a.m. Lunar New Year's Service & Car Blessing
Daily Morning Service at 8:30 a.m.
Friday Meditation Class from 6 p.m.
Regular Sunday Service (Once Monthly) from 10 a.m. (Except last Sunday of month)