Two Kinds of Happiness
Nichiren writes “Single-mindedly chant Nam Myoho Renge Kyo and urge others to do the same, that will remain as the only memory of your present life in this human world.”(WND-1 p.64)
Second Soka Gakkai president Josei Toda gave the following guidance on happiness:
“There are two kinds of happiness: absolute happiness and relative happiness. Absolute happiness is attaining Buddhahood…Relative happiness means that your everyday wishes are fulfilled one by one – for instance, to have a million yen, a wonderful spouse, fine children, a nice house or clothes and so on…Such happiness is not of great consequence. Yet everyone is convinced that this is what being happy is all about.
What, then, is absolute happiness? Absolute happiness means that being alive and here itself is a joy…It also implies a state where one is free of financial worries and enjoys adequate good health, where there is peace and harmony in one’s family and one’s business prospers, and where all that one sees and hears brings one a wonderful sense of pleasure and joy. When we achieve such a state of life, this world, this strife-ridden saha world, will itself become a pure land. This is what we call attaining the state of Buddhahood…
How can we achieve this? We must shift from the pursuit of relative happiness to that of absolute happiness. Only our practice of Nichiren Buddhism can make this happen. I’m working furiously to share this truth with others; so I hope you will have utter confidence in my words and lead such lives [of absolute happiness].
The purpose of life is to realize this kind of happiness, in other words, absolute happiness. Absolute happiness is something that doesn’t change with time; it is eternal and unaffected by external factors, welling forth from the depths of one’s life. It is not a transitory thing like worldly status and fortune or some other fleeting satisfaction.
What matters is living in accord with the Law and attaining an elevated state of life based on the Buddhist Law. The state of life we attain, like the Buddhist Law itself, is eternal. As practitioners of Nichiren Buddhism, we can make our way as champions of life throughout eternity.
Living Buddhism March 2021 p. 36 “Absolute Happiness and Relative Happiness”