|Todai-ji Buddha Hall|
In the 8th century, Todai-ji was built as a headquarter of all Japanese temples. It was not only a center for rituals of the nation but also a center for scholar monks to learn Buddhism beyond different schools. After Meiji Restoration, temples had to choose one school and Todai-ji chose Kegon.
|Pictorical representation of the world of enlightenment |
When I'm asked about Kegon Buddhism, I introduce what I was once told by one of the monks regarding "ke" (which means flower) of "ke-gon" : "Each of human beings has a seed within us. Buddha is the one who has grown the seed to flower beautifully. What we are supposed to do is to do our best to make a seed grow into a flower. " He added, "It's just like the message of a song 'Sekai ni Hitotudake no Hana.'"
"Sekai ni Hitotudake no Hana" or "The Only Flower in the World" is a J-pop song by Smap, written by Noriyuki Makihara. The following is a summary of lyrics:
Look at the flowers at the flower shop
Each is so beautiful that makes your heart stop
Flowers stand tall and proud blooming
without competing which one is the best
Why can't we people live like flowers?
Why do people always want to compare and compete?
Each of us hold different seed within us
We are all unique, we are all different
You don't have to be number one cause you're already only one
You should do your best to make a seed grow into a flower
Spread my arms though I mayBell, songbird, and me
I'll never fly up in the sky.
Songbirds fly but they can't run
Fast on the ground like I do.
Shake myself though I may
No pretty sound comes out.
Bells jingle but they don't know
Lots of songs like I do.
All different, all just right. (translated by D.P.Dutcher)
This is original Japanese.