Nikko Ato Jojo no Koto
The Ita-Dai-Go-Honzon Issue


For a number of years, both Nichiren Shoshu and SGI have maintained that Nikko Shonin refers to the Taisekji Daigohnozon in the “Nikko Ato Jojo no Koto”, aka “Articles Regarding the Succession of Nikko”, aka “Articles to be Observed after Nikko’s Passing.” They claim that the original document exists at Taisekiji in Nikko’s hand.
From: “Refuting Kempon Hokke’s Claims Against the Authenticity of the
‘Wooden Gohonzon for All Humanity (Dai-Gohonzon)”
by Nittatsu:
Allegation 2: Nikko never mentions this so-called Supreme Mandala.
Rebuttal: In his “Transfer Document to Nichimoku (Nikko ato jojo no koto),” the original of which exists at Taiseki-ji, Nikko Shonin states: “I transfer to Nichimoku the great Gohonzon of the second year of Koan that was entrusted upon myself, Nikko. It should be enshrined at the Honmon-ji temple.” “The great Gohonzon of the second year of Koan that was entrusted upon myself, Nikko” obviously signifies the “Wooden Gohonzon Inscribed on October 12, 1279, for All Humanity (Dai-Gohonzon)”. The “Honmon-ji temple” in this quote means a building where this particular Gohonzon should be enshrined at the time of kosen-rufu.
From Derek @ ARBN:
“I, Nikko, transfer to Nichimoku the Dai-Gohonzon, which was inscribed in the second year of Koan, and which was transferred to me.” (Shinpen, p. 1883; Seiten, p. 519).
For those who read Japanese the full text of Nikko Shonin’s will is in the Shinpen, p. 1883. The full title is “Nikko Ato Jojo no Koto [Articles to be Observed after Nikko's Passing].”

There have been several objections raised. These fall into three categorues:
1. Translations issues.
2. Forensic and internal consistency issues.
3. Vagueness
The latter two are closely related and we shall begin examining them in this entry. We shall then take a look at some of the “tweaked translations” later, as these call into question the general credibility of Nichiren Shoshu and SGI to provide honest trsanslations. Thanks to Kazuo @ irgosho {see Message 11619 of 11673}, we now have an honest translation.
About his translation, Kazuo notes:
… the original text is from SGI’s Great Dictionary of Buddhist Philosophy the 3rd edition, translated by K.K. … This document is said to be written in 1332. And in 1333 both Nikko and Nichimoku died. NST insists on the authenticity of this document. But it has not been proved. There are no mentions to images or statues in “Nikko ato jojo no koto”. It is not a long document. My translation is not very good, but you will see what are told there.”
Nikko ato jojo no koto
1. When Homonji is built, Lord Nitta acharya Nichimoku should be the chief priest and the half of the temples in Japan and of Jambudvipa should be administered as Nichimoku’s heritage and the other half should be administered by the community of priests.
… [2.] … (I, Nikko) entrust the Dai-Gohonzon, inscribed in the second year of Koan and given to Nikko (by Nichiren Daishonin) , to the care of Nichimoku. This Dai-Gohonzon is to be enshrined at Honmon-ji Temple.
… [3.]… About Taisekiji, Nichimoku should administer Mido (the main hall) and the graveyard and should make repairs on them. He should conduct Gongyo and wait for Kosenrufu. Nichimoku mentioned above, met Nikko at the age of fifteen and had belief in the Lotus Sutra. Since then he has not made any violation against the Law till his old age of seventy-three. At the age of seventeen he visited Nichiren Shonin in Mt. Minobu in Kai province and served him directly for seven years while he was alive. After his passing, from the eighth year of Koan to the second year of Gen-toku, for fifty years, he repeated the petition to the Emperors. In recognition of such services of him, (I, Nikko) write down this as the testimony for the future.
Nikko
the tenth day of the eleventh month

Note that there is no year given. Depending on the source, the year 1330 or 1332 is inferred from text. Nitta Nichimoku was born in 1260. So, by the Japanese method, he was 73 in 1232. Or, put another way, 1332 was the 73rd anniversary of his birth. counting 1260 as the first. And 1330 was the second year of Gentoku.
In part three, Nikko appears to have his dates crosssed up. The first year of koan was 1278. So the 8th year of koan was 1285, but Nichiren passed away on the thirteenth of October in the 5th year of Koan (1282). Fifty years from that would be 1331. And fifty years later than koan 8 {1285} would be 1334 {Japanese style}. And 50 years prior to the second year of Gentoku was 1281. He does have Nichimoku meeting Nikko in 1274 and going to Minobu in 1276, and these dates tend to agree with other records.
Look at part 2. Does this “obviously” signify the “Wooden Gohonzon Inscribed on October 12, 1279, for All Humanity (Dai-Gohonzon)” aka “the Taisekji Daigohonzon?” The word “Honzon” is found nowhere on the Taisekji Daigohnozon, yet it does appear on the Dai-Honzon of 1274. Records indicate that the Dai-Honzon of 1274 was possibly transferred from Nikko to Saisho Nichgo via Nichimoku & Nitta Nichido. Maybe Nikko had his dates crossed up?
There are other internal problems with this document, but that is enough for now.