Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

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narhwal90
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Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

Post by narhwal90 »

I've passed thru the turning point of being able to recite gongyo from memory instead of the book a couple times now. Its gratifying in a way but was much tougher in the old days when gongyo included the entire Juryo chapter instead of just the verse portion. I was wondering how others in the Nichiren community view memory vs book for gongyo recitation, in whatever form their tradition uses. I see a lot of SGI folks recite from memory, but I usually keep to the book.

I confess to occasionally using the SGI mobile app which contains the gongyo text in one long scrolling window and includes a button which plays a bell thru the speaker when pressed- that is quite handy when on travel etc. I'm less sure about the daimoku counter feature where you set the rate to match your chanting cadence and then the app keeps track of your total but I know a guy that uses it.
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Queequeg
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Re: Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

Post by Queequeg »

narhwal90 wrote: Sat Jan 26, 2019 7:23 pm
I confess to occasionally using the SGI mobile app which contains the gongyo text in one long scrolling window and includes a button which plays a bell thru the speaker when pressed- that is quite handy when on travel etc. I'm less sure about the daimoku counter feature where you set the rate to match your chanting cadence and then the app keeps track of your total but I know a guy that uses it.
Woah! Never occurred to me to use an app. Sounds convenient. I'm old school though. Part of practice for me is getting disconnected from devices and tuning into analog life. If it helps though why not?

I have A and C committed to memory. Maybe B but haven't actually tried. I memorized A and C when I was a kid and learned to say the whole thing in about three minutes because you know when you're 11 you have better things to do. Lol. I still use the liturgy though just because I worry I'll skip sections or get caught in a loop.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

There are beings with little dust in their eyes who are falling away because they do not hear the Dhamma. There will be those who will understand the Dhamma.
-Ayacana Sutta
dude
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Re: Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

Post by dude »

When I was a new member they told me to use the book to do the recitation at least once each day, during either morning or evening gongyo. I still pretty much do, though I've forgotten to sometimes.
There are some phrases in the Hoben portion that show up repeatedly, and I've mixed them up more times than I care to admit.
narhwal90
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Re: Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

Post by narhwal90 »

I worked at doing B from memory back in the old days but would often get stuck in a loop somewhere deep in. From time to time I try it out using my old NSA book, still just as tongue twisting as ever lol.
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justsomeguy
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Re: Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

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Personally, I prefer doing it from memory. I've got A and C down, and much of part B. I tend to memorize in chunks, so if I really sat down and tried to thread the remaining pieces together, I wouldn't need the liturgy book at all. I know some people prefer to use the book, I prefer to go without so I can look at the Gohonzon. That tends to ward off "why am I doing this" thought that creeps it when I am reading from the book. But yeah - there is risk involved. Doing it from memory can be like a game of Chutes and Ladders - similar or repeated phrases can throw you in a loop or make you miss sections altogether. That's why I simply keep the sutra nearby just in case. :)
markatex
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Re: Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

Post by markatex »

I dunno what the ABC stuff is, but I always use the book. Even after practicing for over 12 years, I have very little shindoku memorized. Sometimes you think you have something like that memorized when you really don’t.
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justsomeguy
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Re: Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

Post by justsomeguy »

Part A is a portion of the Hoben Chapter. Part B is the prose portion of the Juryo chapter (the long part), and Part C is the verse form of it. Parts B & C together comprise the entire Juryo chapter. SGI no longer recites Part B as I understand. I of course use the Nichiren Shoshu liturgy, so that terminology might not be universal.
narhwal90
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Re: Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

Post by narhwal90 »

Thats right, B as the text portion of Juryo, SGI does not recite it.
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gohonzon
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Re: Gongyo recitation from memory or from book

Post by gohonzon »

Bobby,

The Nichiren Shoshu Buddhist terminologies accorded to the Sutra recitations are the following;

Hoben — 2nd prose
Seogyo — 2nd verse
Chogyo — 2nd prose
Jigage — 2nd verse

The Seogyo recitation was gradually stopped during the tenure of High Priest Nittatsu Shonin 66th, as it was limited only for acolyte training before their graduation, primarily inside the Mutsubo.

To further clarify, Soka Gakkai has nothing to do with NST Gongyo practice today, including the five silent prayers designated by the Head Temple.
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