Why is the “B” section of Gongyo so much more difficult to learn than the “A” and “C” sections?

It is difficult to learn the “B” section of Gongyo because it is much longer than the “A” and “C” sections. The “B” section of Gongyo is written in prose; however, the “C” section is written in verse. Therefore, it is easier learn the “C” section.

Let me explain the reason why we recite the Hoben and Juryo chapters during our daily Gongyo in the morning and evening. In the “Recitation of the Hoben and JuryoChapters,” Nichiren Daishonin teaches:

As I said before, though no chapter of the Lotus Sutra is negligible, among the entire twenty-eight chapters, the Hoben chapter and the Juryo chapter are particularly outstanding. The remaining chapters are all in a sense the branches and leaves of these two chapters. Therefore, for your regular recitation, I recommend that you practice reading the prose sections of the Hoben and Juryo chapters. In addition, it might be well if you wrote out separate copies of these sections. The remaining twenty-six chapters are like the shadows that accompany a form or the value inherent in a jewel. If you recite the Juryo and Hoben chapters, then the remaining chapters will naturally be included, even though you do not recite them.
(MW-6, p. 10; Gosho, p. 303)


Even though the Hoben and Juryo chapters are extremely important, if we only recite the words, this would still be the Lotus Sutra of Shakyamuni. We would merely be reading the surface meaning of the words. In the Latter Day of the Law, reciting the Lotus Sutra has a completely different significance.

Although the words of the Hoben and Juryo chapters are the same, Nichiren Daishonin’s recitation of these same words is performed based on the life condition of the True Buddha of the Latter Day of the Law. This means that the purpose of our recitation is to reveal and praise the merit of the Gohonzon of Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo, hidden in the depths of the passages of the sutra.

It is difficult to learn Gongyo; however, you can gain great merit from the Gohonzon if you steadily perform your daily prayers.
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