observers of the precepts Those who uphold the Buddhist precepts. The term also refers to those who emphasize only adherence to the precepts. In his writings the Daishonin often applies this term to those who only make an outward show of upholding the precepts. He uses it most often with regard to the priests of the Precepts and the Zen schools.
ocean-imprint meditation A kind of meditation expounded in the Flower Garland Sutra. In this meditation all phenomena of the three existences appear clearly in the mind, just as all things are reflected on the surface of the ocean when the water is calm.
old translation Any of the Chinese translations of the Buddhist sutras and treatises produced before those of Hsüan-tsang (602–664). “Old translation” is contrasted with “new translation,” a designation referring to those translations produced by Hsüan-tsang and translators after him. It has been generally held that the old translations tend to be unliteral, yet readily comprehensible, while the new translations tend to be literal but less accessible. Recent research shows, however, that the quality of any given translation depends mostly on the understanding and ability of its translators, rather than on the category to which it belongs.
Omuro Another name for Ninna-ji, temple of the True Word school in Kyoto, Japan.
one-eyed turtle Also, blind turtle. A reference in the “King Wonderful Adornment” chapter of the Lotus Sutra, which says that encountering the Buddha and his teachings is as rare as a one-eyed turtle finding a floating sandalwood log with a hollow in it suitable to hold him. The story behind this reference is found in the parable of the blind turtle, which appears in the Miscellaneous Āgama Sutra. A blind turtle, whose life span is immeasurable kalpas, lives at the bottom of the sea. Once every one hundred years, it rises to the surface. There is only one log floating in the sea with a suitable hollow in it. Since the turtle is blind and the log is tossed about by the wind and waves, the likelihood of the turtle reaching the log is remote. It is even rarer, says Shakyamuni, to be born a human being; thus one should use the opportunity to master the four noble truths and attain deliverance.
one great reason Also, “one great matter.” The ultimate reason for a Buddha’s appearance in the world. In the “Expedient Means” chapter of the Lotus Sutra, Shakyamuni reveals that the Buddhas make their advent for “one great reason,” to enable all people to attain the same enlightenment as themselves. Specifically they appear in order to open the door of Buddha wisdom to all living beings, to show it, to cause them to awaken to it, and to induce them to enter into it.
One-Hundred-Verse Treatise, The A treatise consisting of one hundred verses translated into Chinese in 404 by Kumārajīva. It was written by Āryadeva, the successor of Nāgārjuna. The One-Hundred-Verse Treatise is one of the three treatises of the Three Treatises school, the other two being Nāgārjuna’s Treatise on the Middle Way and Treatise on the Twelve Gates. One-Hundred-Verse Treatise reaffirms the doctrine of non-substantiality expounded in Treatise on the Middle Way, refuting the Sāmkhya, Vaisheshika, Nyāya, and other schools of Hindu philosophy in the light of the teachings of Buddhism.
On Establishing the Correct Teaching for the Peace of the Land A treatise written in 1260 by Nichiren Daishonin and submitted to Hōjō Tokiyori, the retired regent but still the most powerful figure in the ruling clan. In this treatise he attributes the disasters ravaging the country to slander of the correct teaching and belief in erroneous doctrines. He calls upon the rulers to stop patronizing Buddhist schools based on such doctrines in order to put an end to the disasters. He then predicts that other calamities—internal strife and foreign invasion—will occur without fail if the rulers continue such patronage. And he urges that the correct teaching, which is the basis for establishing a peaceful land, be embraced without delay. The Japanese title of the treatise is Risshō ankoku ron.
one-time recitation See doctrine of one-time recitation.
one vehicle The teaching that enables all people to attain Buddhahood. The Lotus Sutra teaches that the three vehicles, or the teachings for voice-hearers, cause-awakened ones, and bodhisattvas, are not ends in themselves as was previously taught, but means to lead people to the one vehicle. The one vehicle is also referred to as the single vehicle, the Buddha vehicle, the one Buddha vehicle, the one vehicle of Buddhahood, the one supreme vehicle, or the supreme vehicle of Buddhahood.
Onjō-ji Also, Mii-dera. The head temple of the Temple school (Jpn Jimon), one of the two divisions of the Tendai school. In 993, as a result of friction between the followers of Jikaku and those of Chishō, the latter left Mount Hiei and moved to Onjō-ji, where they declared their independence from Enryaku-ji temple on Mount Hiei.
opening the near and revealing the distant Refuting the provisional teaching that Shakyamuni attained Buddhahood for the first time in India and revealing that he originally gained enlightenment numberless major world system dust particle kalpas ago. This is disclosed only in the essential teaching of the Lotus Sutra. There are two kinds of opening the near and revealing the distant: opening the near and revealing the distant in concise form and opening the near and revealing the distant in expanded form. In the “Emerging from the Earth” (fifteenth) chapter, countless Bodhisattvas of the Earth rise up from beneath the earth. The bodhisattvas already present in the assembly are surprised by the sudden appearance of this great multitude. On behalf of the others, Bodhisattva Maitreya asks Shakyamuni Buddha to explain the identity of these newly arrived bodhisattvas. In reply, Shakyamuni announces, “Ever since the long distant past I have been teaching and converting this multitude.” This revelation is called “opening the near and revealing the distant in concise form.” In the following “Life Span” chapter, he describes in some detail the immensity of the span of time since he actually attained enlightenment. That is, the Buddha explicitly reveals that he attained enlightenment numberless major world system dust particle kalpas ago. This revelation of his original enlightenment in the remotest past is called “opening the near and revealing the distant in expanded form.”
opening the provisional and revealing the true Abandoning the expedient or provisional teachings and revealing the true teaching of the Lotus Sutra.
Ornament of Mahayana Sutras, The A commentary on the Consciousness-Only doctrine translated into Chinese by the Indian monk Prabhākaramitra, who went to China in 626. This work consists of verse and a prose commentary on it. The verse is attributed to Maitreya (c. 270–350 or 350–430), the founder of the Consciousness-Only school, and the prose commentary to Vasubandhu who lived around the fourth or fifth century. One account attributes The Ornament of Mahayana Sutras to Asanga, a disciple of Maitreya.
outflows Another term for earthly desires. “Outflows” refers to that which flows out from the six sense organs; i.e., earthly desires, illusions, or defilements. To become free of outflows means to be liberated from earthly desires, illusions, or defilements. The presence of or freedom from outflows make a difference in the results one gains from one’s practice. For example, there is wisdom that retains outflows and wisdom that is free of outflows, meditation accompanied by outflows and meditation without outflows, and a body with outflows and a body without outflows.
Outstanding Principles of the Lotus Sutra, The A work by Dengyō, which explains why the Tendai school that is based on the Lotus Sutra is superior to the other schools. It was written to refute the arguments of Tokuitsu, a priest of the Dharma Characteristics school, who asserted that some people are by nature eternally incapable of attaining Buddhahood, and that the three vehicle teachings are true while the one vehicle teaching is provisional. In the work, Dengyō sets forth ten superior characteristics of the Lotus Sutra, the one vehicle teaching, to show its supremacy over all other teachings.