Nichiren Buddhism is a branch of Mahayana Buddhism based on the teachings of the 13th century Japanese monk Nichiren Daishonin, who identified the Lotus Sutra (scripture) as the core teaching of Shakyamuni Buddha.
Nichiren crytalised the essence of the sutra as the phrase Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo.
He taught that by chanting this phrase to the Gohonzon – anyone can activate their Buddha nature.
The core Buddhist practice is chanting Nam-Myho-Renge-Kyo and reciting portions of the Lotus Sutra (referred to as Gongyo), and sharing the teachings of Buddhism with others in order to help them overcome their problems.
Buddhist practice is supported by faith and study. Studying Buddhist teachings strengthens faith and conviction, which finds expression in practice. Faith is grounded in the experience of applying Buddhism and seeing improvements in the quality of one’s life
Faith could be described as the ongoing effort to orient one’s heart toward the ideal of Buddhahood – the continual unfolding of one’s inherent potential for good, the ability to transform any negative circumstance into a source of growth and benefit, and a life dedicated toward helping others do the same.
Through faith, practice and study one strives to respect that which is of ultimate value: life itself.
A key concept in Nichiren Buddhism is human revolution – the idea that the inner transformation of an individual will cause a positive change in one’s circumstances and ultimately in society as a whole.
Nichiren Buddhism stresses that the greatest fulfilment in life is found ultimately in working for the happiness of others.