Jigyo and Keta
Practice for Oneself, and Practice for Others

The practice of true Buddhism encompasses two aspects.They are jigyo (practice for oneself) and keta (practice for the sake of others). Both are necessary for a complete practice. They are like the two wheels of a cart, which work in unison to move our lives forward. In order to attain enlightenment, we must practice both.

Jigyo

Here are some of the aspects of the practice of jigyo, practice for oneself, which Nichiren Shoshu believers perform:

1.Maintaining a consistent practice of Gongyo and Daimoku, making sincere efforts with a positive attitude. For example, even though we may be tired after a hard day’s work, we never miss evening Gongyo and we accomplish our Daimoku goal.
2.Attending the Ceremonies at the temple—especially the monthly Oko. Even if we have to drive long distances to come to the Temple, we make the effort to attend.
3. Supporting and protecting the temple. For example, we offer Gokuyo to the best of our ability, and help with temple clean-up or volunteer work.
4.Studying the doctrines of true Buddhism by reading the Nichiren Shoshu Monthly and other NST publications.
5.Going on tozan

Keta

Here are examples of the practice of keta, practicing for the sake of others for their benefit, and for the advancement of kosen-rufu.

1.Doing shakubuku—even though the person may not show interest or come to the temple or a meeting, it is important to have the courage to talk about true Buddhism to others.
2.Chanting Daimoku together with your guests.
3.Teaching someone new how to do Gongyo.
4.Bringing a guest to the temple or to a local meeting.
5.Attending local meetings ourselves. The Daishonin’s Buddhism is meant to be practiced together with others. It is not a solitary practice.
The meeting will encourage our guests, but if we don’t have a guest, we can still attend to give our support. This is part of the practice of keta. Giving an experience will always encourage the members, and just talking informally after the meeting to share experiences, will usually inspire someone.If we support the Gongyo and Daimoku and do nothing else, it still will help the meeting.
6.Share your experiences with other members for the sake of mutual encouragement. Help encourage someone who is struggling to strengthen his or her practice to the Gohonzon.
7.Take responsibility—become a communicator—call the members and keep in touch.
8.Practice with the spirit of “unselfishly devoting oneself.”
If a member calls for encouragement, please encourage him. If a member has trouble with consistent Gongyo, offer to go to her home and chant with her.If a member without a car lives near you, offer to give him a ride to the temple for the Oko Ceremony or to a local meeting.

Two Goals of Practice

In Nichiren Shoshu the Daishonin gave us instructions to achieve two goals:

1.To attain enlightenment in our present form (sokushin jobutsu).
2.To establish kosen-rufu.

If we always realize that our own personal happiness is connected to the attainment of kosen-rufu we will be able to have a complete practice of jigyo and keta. Even if we achieve our own personal goals, it would still be hard for us truly to be happy if the society around us is full of unhappiness.Likewise, our behavior in society should reflect our practice of true Buddhism. The advancement of kosen-rufu should always be on our minds.

When we have a personal goal, we should pray to the Gohonzon with the conviction that we want to achieve it for the sake of kosen-rufu, not only for our own personal edification. Our personal prayers should reflect the sprit of both jigyoand keta. For example:

“I am praying for a nice dependable car, so that I can get to the Temple, and the meetings, and give a ride to a new member.”
“I need to overcome my illness or financial hardship so I can put more effort toward activities for kosen-rufu.”
“I want to become successful in daily life so that my happy life will help me shakubuku my parents, brothers and sisters.”

These examples show that good causes in true Buddhism encompass both practice for oneself and practice for the sake of others.

Sixty-sixth High Priest, Nittatsu Shonin gave the following guidance:

Whether or not your prayers will come true depends on whether or not those prayers are connected to kosen‑rufu. When you are praying to recover from an illness, you must ask for good health so that you can put forth great efforts in your activities for the sake of kosen‑rufu. If you are praying to eliminate your financial problems, you must ask for the resolution of such fiscal strife so that you can devote your activities to achieve kosen‑rufu. All your prayers must be connected to kosen-rufu in this way.

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