Promoting unity among people of faith (or no particular faith) in the 21st Century.

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Diary of a Buddhist…more unity from the Focolare

January 14th · No Comments · Buddhist, Chiara Lubich, Christian, Focolare

My Dear Friend Mercedes, of the worldwide Christian movement the Focolare, shared this “Diary of a Buddhist” item. I am compelled to do the same. Folks constantly hear me expressing gratitude for the Focolare, for their late foundress Chiara Lubich, and for their Spirituality of Unity. The item below, from a Focolare Asia Tour blog, may again show why — and why I find myself appending Mercedes’ “1” to my own messages. I love hearing my own spirituality coming back to me in others’ words. And no one I know lives Spirituality and Unity better than the Focolare:

“Hi CB,

“I thought of sharing this short ‘Diary of a Buddhist,’ written by people from Japan (i.e. Cinto and Niwano)  that I know personally.  I was struck by its simplicity and profundity.  You will see that it  reflects with transparency how unity among believers of such diverse cultures and mindsets is possible because the Almighty has planted the seeds of truth everywhere and has inserted divine Love into our very DNA, as Chiara taught us.  I hope you like it.”

1, Mercedes

Diary of a Buddhist – 1

by Munehiro Niwano, doyen of the Risshō Kōsei-kai Gakurin Institute
Spirituality: “In every person the same life of the Buddha”

Next stop: Japan, from the 11th to the 16th of January. Today we begin to publish some excerpts from a talk by Munehiro Niwano, who can help us enter more deeply into dialogue with the Buddhist world, that characterizes this stage of the journey.

As is known, Buddhism draws its origin from the experience of the enlightenment of Siddharta Gautama, which happened in India 2500 years ago. Seated in meditation under the tree of enlightenment, while the morning star was shining in the clear sky, Siddharta reached the state of perfect awareness that, in Buddhist tradition, is called “enlightenment” or “awakening.” Siddharta became the Buddha, the Enlightened One. In that moment, he understood profoundly that, beyond the attachments and the illusions that block us from seeing the true nature of reality, all human beings are provided with the wisdom and the virtue of the Buddha. In other words, he understood that all human beings possess in themselves the same life of the Buddha, that all human beings have in themselves this precious gift that is the “Buddha nature.”

We members of the Risshō Kōsei-kai make an effort to discover and honor the Buddha nature in every neighbor. This is rather easy toward those with whom we agree and toward those whom we like, but becomes more difficult toward people with whom we feel uncomfortable or who we find unpleasant. It isn’t an exaggeration to say that an important element of our religious practice is really that of being able to honor the Buddha nature in everyone, beyond some possible affinities or some possible differences also connected to religious belief. It is truly this approach that constitutes the foundation of the interreligious dialogue of the Risshō Kōsei-kai, or to say it more precisely, of the dialogue among religious people.

From the speech for the presentation of the book “Incontrarsi nell’Amore. Una lettura cristiana di Nikkio Niwano” by Cinto Busquet, Rome, December 2009


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