photo by Eric Kayne

Daily Service (Sutra Chanting):

During our morning Service on Sundays, we chant portions of the Lotus Sutra and also chant the Odaimoku (Namu Myoho Renge Kyo). This is a version of the normal daily service practiced by Nichiren Shu practitioners at home. The chapters from the Lotus Sutra are read in the traditional way (Chinese characters with Japanese pronunciation) known as Shindoku. Shindoku literally means faith reading and is a form of meditation in itself; thus, it is not necessary to understand the meaning of the text while we are chanting. We also regularly chant the Sutra in English to develop our understanding. Our Daily Service usually lasts about 40 minuntes to 1 hour. The mokusho (wooden drum), seen below, is used by the leader during chanting to help keep the beat.

Standard Daily Service;

This is a standard service but changes may be made to add or subtract parts for special services such as holidays, memorials, or commemorative services.

Dojoge - A verse (Shomyo) that is sung in Shindoku usually by the priest. It is a reminder of our interdependent nature.

Sanborai - Bowing to the Three Treasures (Buddha, Dharma, Sangha or Buddha, teaching, congregation) sung together in Shindoku. Prostrations are also offered during this Shomyo.

Invocation [Kanjo] - Read together in English. For some services, a special invocation is read by the officiating priest.

Verses for Opening the Sutra [Kaikyoge] - A verse read together in English.

Chanting of the Lotus Sutra (English or Shindoku)[Dokyo] - We chant several chapters out of the Lotus Sutra on a regular basis. Various sections of Chapter 2, Chapter 12, Chapter 16, Chapter 21 or Chapter 25 may also be read.

Nichiren Shonin's Instruction - A reading from one of our founders writings is read together.

Odaimoku - Chanting of the sacred title. We use drums to help keep beat as we chant the Odaimoku.

Difficulty of Keeping this Sutra [Hotoge] - A verse from the Lotus Sutra with a special beat.

Prayer [Eko] - We use a standard prayer which we read together. If you would like a special prayer read for someone or for something special during the service, please let Myokei Shonin know in advance.

Four Bodhisattva Vows - The Bodhisattva vows are sung in English.

Refuge in the Three Treasures [Sanki] - A verse sung in English for taking refuge. Prostrations are also done during this Shomyo.

Buso - A verse sung in Shindoku by the priest to say farewell.




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