Curious about Buddhism but don’t know where to start? Don’t worry, most of us have been in the very same place! Here are some places to get more information and feel more confident about your practice. I will update this as I find more resources, and if you find a site that has been helpful to you, please feel free to send it along!
I really encourage everyone to explore all aspects of Buddhism – Buddha himself would tell you to do the same! It’s important also to understand the other philosophers and sects of Buddhism so that you can appreciate for yourself Nichiren’s arguments and decide whether Nichiren Buddhism is right for you. These are some great resources to learn and explore all the facets of Buddhism and appreciate its long history and huge impact on Asian culture.
View on Buddhism: Very comprehensive, with basics about Buddhism and everyday practice. You could spend days going through this site! Definitely should be your first stop.
Buddha Weekly: Non-sectarian, embracing a number of traditions, with contributors all around the world.
Buddhist Sacred Texts: A huge collection of modern and ancient Buddhist texts from all traditions. Particularly interesting is their index of Tibetan Buddhist literature and information. Check out the rest of Sacred Texts as well, there are some awesome philosophical works to explore!
Access to Insight: Theraveda Buddhist texts, including a beautifully indexed modern translation of the Pali canon. A wonderful treasure.
Nichiren Buddhist Association of America: Great first stop if you’re interested in Nichiren Buddhism; explains Nam Myoho Renge Kyo, how to use juzu, and has some great articles about the philosophy of Nichiren Buddhism.
Nichiren Library: All of Nichiren’s writings digitized.
SokaGokkai1: There are a number of associated websites with this one. While a little hard to navigate, it has several good pages explaining Nichiren Buddhism well. Especially useful is the Gohonzon diagram!
Nichiren’s Coffeehouse: Similarly a little difficult to navigate (and hasn’t been updated in over 10 years, yikes!) But some good pages on here include Miraculous Tales from the Japanese Buddhist Tradition, a collection of Gohonzons and mandalas, a discussion of queerness in Buddhism, and a large collection of links for Lotus Sutra study.
Inspiration and Support
Words of Wisdom by Daisaku Ikeda: A big collection of Daisaku Ikeda’s best quotes.
Keep Inspiring Me: Quotes and posts about productivity and living your best life.
There’s so much Buddhist literature … where do I start?
Here are the texts I started (or texts similar to the ones I read) with that are available online, in an order I feel would be most helpful. I started with general Theraveda readings, then Mayahana, and then Nichiren Buddhism, which I imagine is how many people start if they weren’t raised Buddhist. I will add more as I find online versions or link ones in Amazon.
The Life of Buddha (very comprehensive biography basically, very easy for Westerners)
The Buddhist Catechism (I found this one annoying and not very helpful but some people may feel otherwise)
Important for Nichiren Buddhism:
The Incredible World of Nichiren Buddhism – Breaks down Nichiren Buddhism incredibly well, gives you a great explanation of what everything means and prepares you for the arguments you will read in the primary texts
The Lotus Sutra (focus on Chapter 2 and Chapter 16)
The Essential of the Teaching of Nichiren Daishonin – Includes the most important essays, letters, and other writings of Nichiren Daishonin, collated in an easy to understand format. Very helpful for those who want to start gosho but aren’t sure where to begin.
The Opening of the Eyes: Commentaries on the Writings of Nichiren – Discusses “The Opening of the Eyes” and other texts, and Nichiren Buddhism’s relevance to everyday life.
The Heart of the Lotus Sutra – Explains the Lotus Sutra thoroughly and comprehensively, extremely helpful.
Some of Nichiren’s most important essays and letters:
Ones I haven’t read but that have been recommended:
Have a resource that’s been particularly useful to you? Feel free to suggest it!