Welcome to the Nichiren Shu Temple site of Portland Oregon!

 Join us in service at the Treasure Tower Temple of Portland Oregon.  All forms of Buddhism and all religions are invited to participate and ask questions. Sunday service is at 10 am and followed by social hour which includes tea and food.  Please check the Monthly Calendar for event times and days.

 

Where Can We Meet the Buddha?

In today's world it has become increasingly difficult to encounter the Buddha, someone whose very presence inspires peace and love in the depths of one's being. The Lotus Sutra tells us that the Buddha is among us now, just as he was present with the assembly at Mt. Sacred Eagle thousands of years ago. If so, why can't we see him? Why can we not feel his presence? Is it because we have never truly searched? The lotus Sutra tells us to seek the Buddha with all our hearts, even at the cost of our lives. With whole hearted dedication and sincerity, we open our eyes to the life of the Buddha that has been hidden from us behind the transient joys and sorrows of daily life. Do we really have a sincere desire to come into the presence of the Buddha? If so, then that desire should be acted upon and expressed. To make that possible, the Nichiren Order invite you to participate in its Sunday services and other activities, so that together we may see and encounter the Buddha.

 

Where Can We Learn the Dharma?

In today's society, many people are unaware that 2,500 years ago Sakyamuni Buddha explained that hard realities of life and the inner poisons that prevent us from finding any lasting self-fulfillment. The Buddha taught the way to liberate ourselves from this turmoil while creating harmony in our daily lives.

Many people today are unaware of the Merits of the teachings [Dharma] of the Buddha. They engage in alternative solutions to their problems. These solutions range from the conventional to the desperate. Some people try to solve their problems through medical and physical therapy, while others try to find a solution in the form of drug or alcohol abuse. However, very few discover and embrace the gentle wisdom of the Dharma. In the Lotus Sutra, Sakyamuni Buddha specifically entrusted the Dharma to us. In this age of spiritual confusion and emptiness we must incorporate the Dharma into our live as well as assist others to do the same. The Nichiren Order invites everyone to come to the Temple for Sunday morning services and other activities to discover the Dharma for themselves.

 

Where Can we Join the Sangha?

Many Buddhists think of the Sangha as referring only to the Buddhist clergy. Sakyamuni Buddha, however, considered the Sangha to be those who actually transform their lives by living in accordance with the Dharma. the Sangha consists of all those who in the effort to attain Buddha hood, assist all sentient beings in doing the same. Joining the Sangha does not mean that one must be a monk or a nun. All that is needed is a sincere aspiration for enlightenment for the sake of all sentient beings. When many people come together to encourage each other and to share in this aspiration, a genuine spiritual community is created. This is the Sangha which brings real benefit to the world. Nichiren Order recognizes this need for a genuine spiritual community and invites you to participate in the Sangha through participation in its Sunday services and other activities.

Dharma:

Text from the Nichiren Order of North America

Selena Gomez just won the “Woman of the Year” award at this year’s annual Billboard Women in Music 2017 that was held on Thursday. She was presented the award by Francia Raisa. In her acceptance speech, Selena told the audience in tears, “To be honest. I think Francia should be getting this award because she saved my life.” Selena was referring to Francia’s donation of her kidney to Selena in September of this year. Selena had been suffering from Lupus, and had the transplant just two weeks before her projected kidney failure. Obviously, Francia’s magnanimous offering to Selena forever bonds them together, reinforcing their already very close friendship. They had called each other, “sis”, affectionately before the surgery, but now they are indeed like sisters.

The two had met for the first time in 2007, when they were part of a group of Disney and ABC Family stars who visited the Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles. Raisa told Latina magazine in 2013 that, “Selena and I were in the same group and we just clicked.” Ever since, these two stars have been the best of friends.

But, who could have imagined when they first met that at some point in the future, Francia would be
giving one of her kidneys to Selena? Buddhists in Japan have a very appropriate answer for this. When
asked this question, they would answer by saying, “No one could have known that Francia would be giving
her kidney to Selena, except for the Buddha.” A meeting such as theirs is so auspicious, that the meeting
could be described as one of butsu-en. butsu means “Buddha” or “of the Buddha”, while en means
“connection”. Put the two terms together and we have “Buddhist connection”.

Without their epic first encounter these two would not have gotten to know each other at all, let alone
someday be a donor or recipient of a kidney. Whatever is behind their story, we can agree that their first
meeting is the one most crucial circumstance in the development of their relationship. In addition, that
Francia was physically compatible with Selena to safely donate a kidney may not have been accidental.
Compatibility is not a low hurdle. First of all, in order to be a kidney donor, one must be of compatible
blood type. Then, one’s tissue type must match. Finally, cross-match testing must be done to determine
that the recipient does not have antibodies against the donor’s cells. To meet someone, and then to
develop a relationship in which both parties have mutual respect for one another is a very difficult and
elusive prospect, and not just a coincidence is what Buddhists believe. Such an encounter is often
assumed to be one created by bustu-en, such that it was necessary for them to meet and become friends.

What the Buddha would want one to understand is that nothing in this world happens without
meaning. There is great meaning that one is born. There is great meaning why one was born to a certain
family. There is great meaning why one was placed in a certain classroom with a certain teacher. There is
great meaning that one has met the people that they have met. There is great meaning that one has met
one’s partner in life. There is great meaning why one chose the work that one does. There is great
meaning in why one has a certain circle of friends. There is great meaning why one is living the life that
s/he is living. Finding the meaning of these relationships, and appreciating it is part of what Buddhism is
about.

In all this, there is one thing to remember. Whether divine intervention was involved in Selena and
Francia meeting each other, what may have been started by divine intervention is left to each on their
own to either enhance or abate their relationship thereafter. Had Selena and Francia not made an effort
to further their relationship, nothing would have come of it. Buddhism holds that it is very important to
cherish and work hard to keep these relationships to nurture a fulfilling life.
(Eisei Ikenaga)