Text central to the Japanese Tendai (Chinese Tiantai) and Nichiren sects of Mahayana Buddhism. It represents the Buddha as divine and eternal, having attained perfect enlightenment eons ago. All beings are invited to become fully enlightened Buddhas through the grace of innumerable bodhisattvas. Composed largely in verse, the sutra contains many charms and mantras. First translated into Chinese in the 3rd century AD, it was extremely popular in China and Japan, where the simple act of chanting it was thought to bring salvation.
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