Gobunshō – 御文章 – Fascicle 1-8 – Construction at Yoshizaki – 吉崎建立章 –

1-8  Construction at Yoshizaki

About the beginning of the fourth month in the third year of Bunmei, I just happened to go away from a place near the southern branch temple of Mii-dera at Otsu in the Shiga district of Omi province, and traveled around in Echizen and Kaga provinces.

Then, I took quite a fancy to this place called Yoshizaki in the Hosorogi district of Echizen province, and opened up the mountain, which had so far been inhabited by tigers and wolves. Having constructed a temple of sorts on the twenty-seventh day of the seventh month, I have passed time, day after day, until three years of springs and autumns have come and gone.

Since monks and laypeople, men and women, who have flocked here appear to have no special purpose, I have prohibited their visit from this year. For when I consider the primary reason for living in this place, wouldn’t it be a shame that anyone who has received life in the human world and had the rare opportunity to encounter the Buddha Dharma should vainly fall into hell?

I wonder for what purpose have they come here. So I have laid down the rule prohibiting the visit here of those who have no intention of settling the entrusting heart, manifested as the nembutsu, to attain birth in the land of bliss. This is solely because it is not central to seek fame or profit, but the realization of Bodhi in the afterlife is essential.

Let those who see or hear about this not entertain their arbitrary views.

Humbly and respectfully.

9th month, 5th year of Bunmei [1473]

1-8 吉崎建立章

文明ぶんめい第三だいさんしょ上旬じょうじゅんのころより、 ごうしゅうがのこおりおお三井みいでらのみなみ別所べっしょへんより、 なにとなくふとしのびいででて、 越前えちぜん加賀かが諸所しょしょ経回けいがいせしめをはりぬ。

よつて当国とうごくほそぎのごうのうち吉崎よしざきといふこの在所ざいしょ、 すぐれておもしろきあひだ、 年来ねんらいろうのすみなれしこのさんちゅうをひきたひらげて、 七月しちがつじゅう七日しちにちよりかたのごとくいちこんりゅうして、 昨日きのう今日きょうぎゆくほどに、 はや三年さんねん春秋しゅんじゅうおくりけり。

さるほどに道俗どうぞく男女なんにょくんじゅうせしむといへども、 さらになにへんともなきていなるあひだ、 当年とうねんより諸人しょにん出入しゅつにゅうをとどむるこころは、 この在所ざいしょきょじゅうせしむる根元こんげんはなにごとぞなれば、 そもそも人界にんがいしょうをうけてあひがたき仏法ぶっぽうにすでにあへるが、 いたづらにむなしくらくしずまんは、 まことにもつてあさましきことにはあらずや。

しかるあひだ念仏ねんぶつ信心しんじんけつじょうして極楽ごくらくおうじょうをとげんとおもはざらん人々ひとびとは、 なにしにこの在所ざいしょらいじゅうせんこと、 かなふべからざるよしの成敗せいばいをくはへをはりぬ。 これひとへにみょうもんようほんとせず、 ただしょうだいをこととするがゆゑなり。

しかれば、 見聞けんもん諸人しょにん、 へんじゅうをなすことなかれ。

あなかしこ、 あなかしこ。

文明ぶんめいねんがつ にち

Index of individual letters:

Fascicle 1-2 – Renouncing the World and Awakening the Bodhi-mind – 出家発心章
Fascicle 1-3 – Hunting and Fishing – 猟すなどり章
Fascicle 1-5 – Journey in the Snow – 雪中章
Fascicle 1-6 – Drowsiness – 睡眠章
Fascicle 1-8 – Construction at Yoshizaki – 吉崎建立章
Fascicle 1-13 – A Wrong View Concerning “Ten Kalpas Ago” – 此方十劫邪義章
Fascicle 2-4 – Severing Crosswise the Five Evil Courses – 横截五悪趣章
Fascicle 2-5 – Juzu – 珠数章
Fascicle 2-7 – Going Is Easy, but No One Is Born There – 易往無人章
Fascicle 2-11 – The Fivefold Doctrine – 五重義章
Fascicle 3-4 – The Great Sage, the World-honored One – 大聖世尊章
Fascicle 3-6 – Solely Saying the Name Constantly – 唯能常称章
Fascicle 4-10 – This Present Age – 今の世章
Fascicle 4-11 – The Unity of Beings and the Dharma – 機法一体章
Fascicle 4-12 – The Meetings Twice Every Month – 毎月両度章
Fascicle 4-14 – The Settled Mind of Our Tradition – 一流安心章
Fascicle 4-15 – Construction at Ozaka – 大坂建立章
Fascicle 5-1 – Those Lacking Wisdom in the Latter Age – 末代無智章
Fascicle 5-2 – Eighty Thousand Dharma-teachings – 八万法蔵章
Fascicle 5-3 – Women Remaining in Lay Life – 在家尼入道章
Fascicle 5-4 – Whether Men or Women – 抑男子女人章
Fascicle 5-5 – Attaining the Entrusting Heart – 信心獲得章
Fascicle 5-6 – Singleness of Heart, Great Benefit – 一念大利章
Fascicle 5-9 – All the Sacred Scriptures – 一切聖教章
Fascicle 5-10 – The Tradition of Shinran Shonin -聖人一流章
Fascicle 5-11 – The Annual Memorial Observance for Shinran Shonin – 御正忌章
Fascicle 5-12 – Holding on to Amida’s Sleeves – 御袖章
Fascicle 5-13 – The Unsurpassed, Profound Virtues – 無上甚深章
Fascicle 5-16 – White Ashes -白骨章
Fascicle 5-17 – All Women – 一切女人章
Fascicle 5-18 – The Master of Our Tradition – 当流聖人章
Fascicle 5-21 – Clear Statements in the Scriptures – 経釈明文
Fascicle 5-22 – The Teaching of Our Tradition – 当流勧化章

Other Resources:
Letters of Rennyo: The Essence of Shin Buddhism (essay/talk by Rev. Daien T. Haseo)

Letters of Rennyo – On Youtube (presented by Rev. Sugahara Yuki)

Complete Letters of Rennyo translation by the Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai follow this link to their website to download a copy.

To purchase the book ‘Letters of Rennyo’ , Translated by as part of the Hongwanji Shin Buddhism Translation Series, this is the publication information & link:

  • Title :Letters of Rennyo
  • ¥1,100
  • Author :Shin Buddhism Translation Series
  • Language :English
  • ISBN :4-938490-20-X
  • pages :164

Buy from Hongwanji International Center: https://international.hongwanji.or.jp/html/c3b1p1.html

If you would like a digital copy containing more translated letters than listed above (albeit not translated by Hongwanji), you can download a PDF from the Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai (BDK – Amercia) website here: Link: https://bdkamerica.org/product/tannisho-passages-deploring-deviations-of-faith-and-rennyo-shonin-ofumi-the-letters-of-rennyo/

Credits: The text for the Letters of Rennyo as presented on this and subsequent pages was originally shared on the following site : http://www.yamadera.info/seiten/seiten_index.htm

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