have been hearing about Ushitaro Gongyo...has sensei mentioned anything abt it anywhr ??

was told by sumbdy to do Ushitaro Gongyo btwn 2-4 am... wana knw has sensei mentioned anything abt this anywhere...n Hw is it special thn other regular gongyo ??

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not that i know of...he might have mentioned it back when relations between the priesthood and the SGI laity was much more cooperative...it's exclusively a practice that Nichiren Shoshu priests did waking up or staying up at those early morning hours.  Wikkipedia sums it best it seems (by the way, I heard from former priests that the high priest or even the top echelon priests hardly perform this 'ceremony' or ritual:

The most important gongyo service in Nichiren Shoshu is the Ushitora Gongyo performed daily by the high priest or his proxy (when he is unable to officiate). Ushitora Gongyo takes place in the Grand Reception Hall of Head Temple Taisekiji and follows the format of the five-prayer morning gongyo service. It is done between the eponymous hours of the ox (ushi, 02:00) and the tiger (tora, 04:00), usually starting at 02:30 and taking about 50 minutes. Its purpose is to pray for the worldwide propagation of Nichiren Shoshu Buddhism and—by extension—the peace and prosperity of all the world's peoples [2].

The significance of performing Ushitora Gongyo at this time of day derives from earlier Buddhist teachings that describe the hour of the ox as "the end of darkness" and the hour of the tiger as "the beginning of light," and ones that describe all Buddhas as having attained enlightenment at this time. The passage from the hour of the ox to the hour of the tiger therefore symbolizes the transition from the unenlightened condition of a common mortal to the enlightened condition of a Buddha, so the performance of gongyo at this hour serves as a reminder of the true purpose of Buddhist practice: to achieve enlightenment in this lifetime.

Who or why is this somebody talking up ushitora gongyo?  Other than 'symbolic' it's not a supernaturally special gongyo.

thnx so much Dan ,


I am glad to have recvd such a detailed insite on tis..one of my member spoke to me abt tis..saying i shud do Ushitaro Gongyo every day btwn to 2- 4 am to chalenge specific deep rooted karma's .. I strictly like to only follow sensei guidance in faith. so wnted to knw if sensei has mentiond nythin specific abt this ..wud wana follow it only if sensei has asked to.


Thnx indeed !!

tell that member to get guidance or clarification from a senior leader.  it comes down to your heart and will when challenging deep rooted karma....not some supernatural 'special' time and buddhism is about common sense.  Unless you work some kind of strange hours and that time is the best time you can chant, then ok.  Otherwise don't do it.  Sometimes just being able to do an extra gongyo at exactly midnight was once considered doing an 'ushitora' gongyo but again base it common sense.



Still I want to know the details and importance of ushitaro

Hi Shilpa

I have also heard about Ushitaro Gongyo. I am told that Sensei and other leaders in Japan do their Gongyo as early as between 3 Am and 5 AM. Its the most divine period of the day. In India we call it "The Brahma Muhurtham ". That apart I am told that chanting during this time is most effective as we are chanting alongwith Sensei, and his mentors , Nichiren, Shakyamuni etc. Once when I was going through a  very difficult period in my life I dd wake up at 3 am and chanted for an hour and 20 minutes everyday. Very mystically I came out of my problems.



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