The Principal Book of Won-Buddhism

Part One : General Introduction

Chapter Two: An Outline of the Teaching

Buddhism is the unsurpassed, great path; its truths and expedients are immense, so that numerous spiritual mentors have taken them as the basis of various schools and sects, thereby opening the gates of propagation and teaching countless people. The fundamental principles of all the world’s religions are also essentially one, but as different religions have long been established with different systems and expedients, there have been not a few incidents of failure to reach harmony and dialogue between these religious groups. All this is due to ignorance of the fundamental principles underlying all religions and their sects. How could this be the original intent of all the buddhas and sages?
Looking especially at the Buddhism of the past, its institutions were organized mainly in terms of monastic orders, which were not well suited to people living in the secular world, so that anyone who wished to be a true Buddhist had to ignore one’s duties and responsibilities to the secular life and even give up one’s occupation. In such a situation, no matter how good the buddhadharma, it would be difficult for all the many living creatures in this boundless world to gain access to the buddhas’ grace. How could this be the consummate, great Way?
Therefore, we have enshrined as the object of faith and the model of practice Il-Won-Sang (One Circle Image), the Dharmakāya (law-body) Buddha, which is the original source of all things in the universe and the mind-seal of all the buddhas and sages. We have laid down as the main principles of faith and practice the Fourfold Grace of Heaven and Earth, Parents, Fellow Beings, and Laws, and the Threefold Study of Cultivating the Spirit, Inquiry into Human Affairs and Universal Principles, and Choice in Action. Our aim is to become adherents of a broad and consummate religion by incorporating and making use as well of the doctrines of all the world’s religions.