The True Pure Land Religion

Jodo Shinshu Buddhism

A way of gratitude and humility

A Brief Introduction to Buddhism

"In a nutshell, Buddhism is a teaching that shows us the workings of our ego self and how that ego self causes us all of our problems of life."

"Our normal reaction to such a statement is, “What me? I don’t have an ego.” This is exactly why we need Buddhism, because we cannot see the workings of our ego and how it causes us so many problems in life. Just as we cannot see our physical self, like our own face, without the help of a mirror, Buddhism teaches us that our ego self is impossible for us to see ourselves. Buddhism is a teaching that shows us our ego self, and then shows us the path to being liberated from the workings of that ego."

"We might think, “Well, sometimes I have an ego, but not most of the time. And certainly not as much as so and so.” When we begin to talk about ego, right away someone comes to mind: our boss, or mother-in-law, our teenage son or daughter, our neighbor that we dislike, but not ourselves. This too is a reflection of how hard it is to see our ego."

About Jodo Shinshu Buddhism
(Shin Buddhism)

Mililani Hongwanji Buddhist Temple pratices the Jodo Shinshu sect of Buddhism, more specifically the Hongwanji-ha or Nishi Hongwanji sub sect.

Jodo Shinshu means the "True Pure Land Religion"

Jodo Shinshu Buddhism or Shin Buddhism is part of the Pure Land Mahayana branch of Buddhism.

Our Practice

"Guided by the teaching of Shinran Shonin, we shall listen to the compassionate calling of Amida Tathagata [the personification of infinite compassion and wisdom]  and recite the Nembutsu ["Namo Amida Butsu" or "I take refuge in Amida Buddha"]. While always reflecting on ourselves, amidst our feelings of regret and joy, we shall live expressing our gratitude without depending on petitionary prayer and superstition."

"Shin Buddhism asks people like you and me to open our hearts and minds to the “light” or the wisdom that is always present. It also asks us to open our hearts and minds to “life”, the compassion, rushing at at all times in our lives. For example, we may experience such wisdom-compassion in the form of strangers helping us by holding a door open for us, helping us find our way when we are lost, etc."


"When we begin to look at life from the perspective of the recipient, that everything in life is a gift, what we know, what we own, what we have achieved, they are all in a sense gifts, because nothing can be accomplished on one’s own. The successful businessman is successful because of his customers, because of his employees, because of his business knowledge that he has learned from others. Even the Olympic gold medalist of course trains and accomplishes an amazing athletic feat, but in reality, it would not have been possible without coaches and teammates, family and supporters.


"The life of humility is the most powerful and dynamic life. In the West, we think humility means being weak, or passive, but humility is the true strength of life. We think that an oak tree is tall and firm, but in a strong wind, the oak tree breaks. A willow, or bamboo, however, is soft and flexible, and can bend and not break in a strong wind. A humble person is truly strong, whereas a rigid, stubborn person, is actually weak."

"The Shin Buddhist way of life is the life of unending gratitude. The more one becomes grateful, the more one becomes humble. The more one becomes humble, the less one needs in life. The less one needs in life, the more one truly has."

Additional Resources

The information provided on this page is introductory. Here are some resources about Jodo Shinshu Buddhism that will go into further detail:

"Shin Buddhism"

Source: Buddhists Churches of America (BCA)

The BCA governs the temples of our denomination on the U.S. Mainland

"The Teachings"

Source: Jodo Shinshu Hongwanji-ha

This is the international governing organization for temples of our denomination around the world.

"Jodo Shinshu Buddhism"

Source: San Fernando Valley Hongwanji Buddhist Temple

This is a fellow Jodo Shinshu temple of the same sub sect in California.

"About Jodo Shinshu"

Source: Longmont Buddhist Temple

This is a fellow Jodo Shinshu temple of the same sub sect in Colorado.

Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii
Buddhist Churches of America (Organization that oversees Jodo Shinshu Temples on the U.S. Mainland)
Jodo Shinshu Hongwanji-ha (Head Jodo Shinshu Organization, Japan)
Jodo Shinshu: A Guide
Mililani Hongwanji Membership Handbook
Annotations and Reference: "Ocean: An Introduction to Jodo-Shinshu Buddhism in America" by Kenneth K. Tanaka
Longmont Buddhist Temple