who believe in me will amass good fortune as high as Mount Calm and Bright.
Question: Why is it that those who slander you have not yet had their heads broken into seven pieces?
Answer: Since ancient times, of all those who slandered sages other than the Buddha, only one or two have suffered punishment by having their heads broken. The offense of defaming Nichiren is not by any means limited to only one or two persons. The entire populace of Japan has in fact [slandered Nichiren and] had their heads broken. What else do you think caused the great earthquake of the Shoka era and the huge comet of the Bunei era?4
I, Nichiren, am the foremost sage in all Jambudvipa. Nevertheless, from the ruler on down to the common people, all have despised and slandered me, attacked me with swords and staves,5 and even exiled me.6 That is why Brahma, Shakra, the gods of the sun and moon,
and the four heavenly kings have incited a neighboring country to punish our land. This is clearly described in the Great Collection and Benevolent Kings sutras, the Nirvana Sutra, and the Lotus Sutra. Even if ten thousand prayers were to be offered, if the people fail to heed me, it is certain that this country will experience what happened on Iki and Tsushima.7
My disciples, you should believe what I say and watch what happens. These things do not occur because I myself am respectworthy, but because the power of the Lotus Sutra is supreme. If I praise myself, people will think that I am boastful, but if I humble myself, they will despise the sutra. The taller the pine tree, the longer the wisteria vine hanging from it. The deeper the source, the longer the stream. How fortunate, how joyful! In this impure land, I alone enjoy happiness and delight.
Nichiren Daishonin wrote this letter at Minobu in the first year of Kenji (1275) and sent it to Toki Jonin, a leading retainer of Lord Chiba, the constable of Shimosa Province, and Toki, one of the Daishonins staunchest disciples, was a lay priest who lived in Shimosa, to the northeast of Kamakura. He received dozens of letters from the Daishonin, many of which contain significant revelations about teachings. Among these, The Object of Devotion for Observing the Mind is perhaps best known.
In the present letter, the Daishonin defines a sage as one who fully under
stands the three existences of life past, present, and future and uses the term to indicate a Buddha. A Buddhas prophecy is based on the strict law of causality, which governs life throughout eternity. By observing the present with an understanding of causality, the past and the future may be known. Nichiren Daishonin declares himself to be the foremost sage in the entire world on the basis of the fulfillment of the prediction of rebellion at home and foreign invasion he made in On Establishing the Correct Teaching for the Peace of the Land.