Hunting and Fishing

From The Letters of Rennyo Shonin (Gobunsho) Fascicle 1, Letter 3

The important point of the settled mind in our tradition does not lie particularly in refraining from evil thoughts or keeping delusory thoughts and attachments from arising.

We may just carry on trading, working as servants, hunting or fishing. If we deeply realize that the Primal Vow of Amida Tathagata promises to save such worthless people like us, who are absorbed, morning and evening, inn our daily engagements, deluded under the influence of our evil karma, and if we single-heartedly entrust ourselves to Amida Buddha’s compassionate Vow without any doubt, while having firm assurance of our emancipation - since such a single thought of entrusting is sincere, we will certainly be saved by the Tathagata.

Beyond this, in what state of mind should we say the nembutsu? We should say the nembutsu as long as we live, acknowledging our deep indebtedness to the benevolence of Amida who saves us by settling our birth through the endowment of the power of entrusting which we thus receive.

Such people are called practicers with the entrusting heart who have attained the settled mind of our tradition.

Humbly and respectfully.

18th day of the 12th month, 3rd year of Bunmei [1471]

Right Livelihood: Hunting and Fishing

April 25

The fifth aspect of the Eightfold Path, Right Livelihood is to earn a living in way that is in keeping with the wisdom and compassion of the Buddha, and avoids causing harm for others. Historically, people who made their living by hunting and fishing have suffered discrimination in Buddhist countries because their livelihood depended on taking the lives of animals. This week’s Dharma talk will share the story of Shinran Shonin’s kind teaching for a hunter’s wife, assuring her that she too is embraced by Amida’s Buddha’s boundless compassion.

Featured image: Goose Island (Ganjima) near the Gwannyuji Temple in Ibaraki, Japan.

8:30 a.m. Shoshinge Sofu Chanting
9:00 a.m. Taiso Morning Exercise
9:30 a.m. Dharma Service
10:30 a.m. Japanese Language Service 日本語法要

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