What is enlightenment? What do Buddhists believe in?

Buddhists believe that every person has infinite positive potential and the power to change his or her life for the better. Through their practice, people feel more fulfilled and happier and more able to contribute to society.

Buddhism teaches that a universal law (dharma) underlies everything that is in the universe, and that all life is interconnected. It also teaches us that we are all ultimately responsible for the course our own lives take. A change in our thoughts or our hearts will lead to a change in our external circumstances and will affect the people around us.

Nichiren, a 13th-century Buddhist priest from Japan, established the recitation of Nam Myoho Renge Kyo as the practice by which anyone can bring his or her life into harmony with the dharma, or the greater life of the universe, thus increasing experience wisdom, courage, vitality and compassion. Enlightenment conjures up the image of people practicing strict teaching in the search for extraordinary powers beyond the reach of ordinary people.

Nichiren, taught that enlightenment is the amalgamation of subjective wisdom with objective reality, and indicates a complete understanding of the reality of this world. Enlightenment is not a certain point that we will ever reach. Enlightenment denotes constant, daily challenges and a renewal of our determination to grow as human beings and have a positive effect on the lives of those around us.

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