His life could come from today’s headlines—controversial, charismatic and polarizing, with a life filled with tabloid worthy scandals. Rev. Haya Akegarasu (1877-1954) became a renowned Buddhist whose teachings were strongly influenced by Manshi Kiyozawa, whose own experiential approach modernized Jodo Shinshu. Akegarasu eventually held the top administrative post in the Higashi Honganji denomination. Continue reading “Akegarasu: Buddhist poet”
By Joseph Deschenes
Usually in Spring, I get itchy feet—feeling the need to travel, go hiking or camping, just get away somewhere. It’s probably because I’m a schoolteacher and work gets busy. However, this year my journey took me to a place of frail health, physical weakness, and feelings of isolation. Continue reading “Trekking to the Unknown”
By Rev. Patti Nakai
“What the heck,” a newcomer may wonder after hearing a common explanation of Jodo Shinshu. The explanation? “Just recite Namo Amida Butsu and rebirth after death is guaranteed in a bejeweled paradise called Pure Land.” Continue reading “Shinran Bound and Gagged (And Finally Released)”
A debate rages these days on whether Jodo Shinshu temples should offer meditation. Proponents say meditation appeals to many people and will attract new members.
In Jodo Shinshu Buddhism, we already are doing meditation, says Toshikazu Arai, professor emeritus of Soai University in Osaka. It’s called nembutsu (also: nenbutsu). Continue reading “Nembutsu as Meditation”
A religion labeled anti-American, its leaders arrested, buildings shot at and burned, followers viewed with suspicion. The target? Not Islam, but Buddhism. Continue reading “American Sutra”