Reducing Karmic Retribution
December 15, 2002

In review of Buddhist principles, which I have not studied for many years, I have read some of the work of Nichiren Daishonin, a Buddhist adherent. Although I have only read the first four pages of a letter given to me, I find that I agree with most of what is said in the text, but resolutely disagree with one precept.
It is the condition of the writer to put forth the idea that one must strive to lesson karmic retribution. That retribution being the deserved punishment or reliving of harsh circumstances brought on by past life actions that brought pain to others. To lesson this "bad Karma" The Buddhists believe that one must strive to practice 3 principles. Teach truth: The power of Wisdom. Practice good. And protect the Law-to reinstitute faith in Buddhist principles. By undergoing significant challenges for ones actions, for being persecuted for upholding Truth, one then lessens the karmic load we carry taking us one step closer to Nirvana.
Also, according to the Mahapariniravana Sutra, a Chinese translation of the Nirvana Sutra, "It is due to the blessings obtained by protecting the Law that they can diminish in this lifetime their suffering and retribution." In other words, by obeying and protecting the Sutras, you are allowed to erase the karma you may have been carrying in several lifetimes, creating a portal to Nirvana in one lifetime alone. It is the persecution of others placed on us for these acts that frees us.
My disagreement is not the practicing of the three principles of Wisdom, kind acts, and upholding the Principles of Heaven. My disagreement stems from the reason given to do so. It is used as a way of purchase: a way to buy one's freedom and entrance to Nirvana. I see this as both shallow and missing the point of all the teachings of Buddha, Jesus, and all other prophets that predate them. If the act of doing these things does not stem from a heart that simply desires to act in this manner, then of what real value is the action?
According to these teachings, one strives to practice these three principles for self-gain which contradicts the act of giving. Thus, it is believed, that one gives only to gain a return. It is a law of physics that this is true. But I am not merely energy. I am conscious and when I am able and willing to practice the three principles, I do so solely because I desire to act in this manner. Any practice of these principles for self-gain renders my actions as shallow and of little value.
I am also aware that these teachings allude to the upholding of the laws contained in the Sutras and other practiced laws within Buddhism. As yet, I see no mention of Absolute Truth, that which is attained by directly being a part of Heaven within this lifetime. If this is the ideology being taught, that these laws written by the 25 teachers who transmitted the teachings of Buddha are the only truths to be upheld, then this practice limits the potential of love at the individual level. It limits the full capacity of God or Heaven, or Nirvana that lives in us daily. I am unable to agree with this shortsightedness just as I disagree with other shortsighted practices in Christianity.
I am hoping that as I study these Buddhist principles, the ideas I have just brought forward will be discussed and revealed. I will give it time. I also hope that as I break out of my 5 year hermitage, I will find people who believe good action and attainment of wisdom is something we strive to do because it brings us closer to the perfection of love for the sake of being love and for no gain other than that which allows us to give eternally.