Mappo is the age that is supposed to begin 2,000 years after Sakyamuni Buddha’s passing and last for “10,000 years”. (The first two ages are the Age of Right Dharma , followed by the Age of Semblance Dharma. During this degenerate third age, it is believed that people will be unable to attain enlightenment through the word of Sakyamuni Buddha, and society will become morally corrupt. This is not a mystical prophesy, nor may the numbers of year be right, but and expression.
In Buddhist thought, during the Age of Dharma Decline the teachings of the Buddha will still be correct, but people will no longer be capable of following them. Buddhist temporal cosmology assumes a cyclical pattern of ages, and even when the current Buddha’s teachings fall into disregard,
In the Lotus Sutra, Bodhisattva Superior Practices is entrusted to spread Buddhist law in this age and save mankind and the earth. He and countless other Bodhisattvas, specifically called Bodhisattvas of the Earth (of which he is the leader), vow to be reborn in a latter day to re-create Buddhist law, thus turning the degenerate age into a flourishing paradise.
This may be seen as more political. A Paradise on Earth is not Utopia, better a more Social Society with a improved quality of life.
Shakyamuni entrusts them instead of his more commonly known major disciples with this task since the Bodhisattvas of the Earth have had a karmic connection with Gautama Siddhartha (more his teaching) , meaning that they are aware of the Superior Practice (better way)which is the essence of Buddhism or the Dharma in its original, pure form.
Maitreya cults have frequently formed in Korea, Koreans believe that the future Buddha will be born and Save the world.
The Pure Land schools of Buddhism in China and Japan believe we are now in this latter age of “degenerate Dharma”. Pure Land followers therefore attempt to attain rebirth into the Pure Land of Amitabha Buddha, where they can practice the Dharma more readily.
This seems to be more acceptable with all the sects teaching magical-religious practices, ego aggrandizing practices, and erroneous philosophies.
When we look at this age warfare, natural disasters and corruption of the Sangha
Industrial pollution, abuse and exploitation of people. In a Sutra, Buddha says the world is burning like a fire with evil passion and Samara. The Buddha calculated events of the future because he reasoned what the future may be like.
In History we see cycles of peace, enlightened governments and cultures.
But than there has been turmoil. (The dark ages where ended with the Renaissance, AntiWar and Anti Racist protests happened in the 60’s. ) Speaking to people now, and seeing their attitudes, this author can see and agree with Shinran.
Honen, Shinran’s teacher, thought in addition to this, practitioners are encouraged to engage in “auxiliary” practices, such as observing the Five Precepts, The following are the five precepts
(1 Not to Kill. 2 Not To Lie. 3. Not to perform Sexual Misconduct 4. Not to inoxicate 5. Not to Steal)
Meditation, the chanting of sutras and other good conduct. , as Jōdo-shū and Jodo Shin Shu stresses that the compassion of Amitābha is extended to all beings who recite the nembutsu.