AS I have stated many times before, the scholars in the world today assert that they have studied the Buddhist doctrines and acquired wisdom. But their whole lifetime is wasted, passed in a dream, as it were, simply because they fail to understand “this one great reason.” You should be absolutely clear on this point, absolutely clear! Take care, take care.
The twentieth day of the twelfth month
Reply to Sadashige
Addressed to a believer named Sadashige, this letter bears no year but is thought to have been written at Minobu in 1276. Little is known about the recipient. The “one great reason” is a phrase from the “Expedient Means” (2nd) chapter of the Lotus Sutra, where it refers to the reason why the Buddhas appear in the world, namely, to cause living beings to acquire the Buddha wisdom. In other writings Nichiren Daishonin identifies this “one great reason” with the Law of Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, and his reference to it here suggests Sadashige’s deep knowledge of Buddhism.