Shinran and Bennen


Grade Level: 7, 8, High School

Keywords: Shinran Shonin


  • The student will be able to recall two main aspects of Shinran's encounter wiith Bennen/Myo-ho-bo


  • "Shinran and Bennen" Play Script Play (Attachment #1)
  • Review sheet (Attachment #2)
  • Costumes (optional)
  • Background (optional)


  • Make four(4) copies of script for the play "Shinran and Bennen"
  • Cut up 3 of the copies at the scenes. (Highlight the various parts)
  • Make sufficient copies of the Review Sheet for the class
  • Read the Play Notes (on the script).


  1. Introduction
    1. If this class is being presented following Shinran's life, then the students should know that this occurs in Inada in Hitachi Province. The exact date is unknown.
    2. This was reported by Kakunnyo in his biography of Shinran Shonin.
    3. If this class is not being presented chronologically, then provide the setting.
  2. Ask for volunteers/assign parts. Give lines to people to practice.
  3. Give a "role" for the audience such as when "Shinran" is mentioned say "namu amida butsu" or "wind" is mentioned they make wind sounds. Practice while the main actors are practicing.
  4. Play
  5. Make sure that the actors all get a round of applause
  6. Have students fill out the review sheet.
  7. Discuss review sheet
  8. Summarize and conclude


  • Review Sheets are the evaluation. Make sure that each student knows at least one memorable fact.


  • Video taping and putting it up on YouTube (or other video sharing sites) can enhance this lesson. (Unfortunately, I've never been able to do this)
  • Also this can be further expanded by students creating a website annotating the material w/ appropriate links to other materials


Mas Nishimura, San Jose Betsuin, 2010