Aizen Myo-o (#14 on the Gohonzon Diagram
  • Deity of romantic sexual love 
  • Worshipped independently by other sects — note the statue at right
  • Represents turning desire into enlightenment 
  • He may be said to represent yearning for Enlightenment
Earthly desires in this Buddhism are not to be suppressed. Rather, we use the energy of single-minded desire to reveal our enlightenment. When you truly chant for your heart’s desire, it's like you are shooting an arrow. The truer you are to your true desire, the truer your aim. The amazing part is that you are really pointing that arrow at your own life. You are sending the arrow of enlightenment to the exact thing, be it a false belief, a fear, a lack of faith, that is preventing you from getting that which you desire.

Fudo Myo-o (#21 on the Gohonzon Diagram)

  • He sits in fire but is immovable
  • He holds a thunderbolt and a rope and he uses these tools to defeat devils
  • Represents making all things work towards enlightenment, achieving goals "no matter what"
In Fudo’s left hand is a rope to bind the demons. In his right other hand, he holds high a flaming thunderbolt sword. This sword is the voice of the Buddha saying: "Make all things work for your enlightenment." This sword crashes down and cuts through the demons (which, in reality, are your own internal demons). Further, Fudo sits in a raging fire and chooses not to move. He has decided to make the fire work for his enlightenment. Similarly, every situation in our life exists for the sole purpose of leading us to our own happiness.

Aizen Myo'o and Fudo Myo'o Together

A key passage from the Lotus Sutra reads:

When living beings have become truly faithful,
Honest and upright, gentle in intent,
Single-mindedly desiring to see the Buddha
Not hesitating even if it costs them their lives,
Then I and the assembly of monks
Appear together on Holy Eagle Peak.
Aizen represents the concentration of the “single-mindedly desiring to see the Buddha.”  Fudo represents “not hesitating even if it costs them their lives.” We have this wonderful life (our own) and we have been endowed with the Great Mandala. Will we have the same opportunity next life? We should proceed as if this life is the one that will change the course of our karma and create genuine happiness for many, many lifetimes to come.  This is the meaning of “not hesitating even if it costs them their lives.”

About the Siddam Sound Characters

Siddam is an Indian written ceremonial language. Aizen and Fudo are the only beings on the Gohonzon written in this language. 

Aizen (Ho) and Fudo (Ham) are the only true sound characters on the Gohonzon. When combined they make the sound OAM. OAM is considered a sacred sound, encompassing all other sounds.

more special characters