Check It Out

The Youth Cherry Tree

A Symbol of Winter Turning to Spring

Cherry trees in full bloom,
celebrating the triumph
of mentor and disciple.[1]SGI President Ikeda translated from the April 2, 2016, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, the Soka Gakkai’s daily newspaper. —SGI President Ikeda

The Youth Cherry Tree, named by SGI President Ikeda, has existed from the early days of the Soka Gakkai and stands in front of the north entrance to the Hall of the Great Vow for Kosen-rufu in Shinanomachi, Tokyo.

This was the sole cherry tree in the neighborhood when the headquarters was moved to Shinanomachi from Nishi-Kanda in November 1953. Several years later, during the renovation of the Soka Gakkai center, the tree was to be cut down to expand the building. When President Ikeda learned of the plan, he immediately asked that the tree be preserved since it had stood there since the time of second Soka Gakkai President Josei Toda.

President Ikeda later named it the Youth Cherry Tree (Jpn Seinen Zakura). Since then, he has planted cherry trees throughout the Soka Gakkai Headquarters complex. The Youth Cherry Tree continues to bloom vibrantly every year. We celebrate the arrival of cherry blossom season with a painting of the tree on this month’s cover.


A Symbol of Winter Turning to Spring

“Second Soka Gakkai President Josei Toda loved cherry blossoms. Like the cherry trees that endure the bitter cold of winter to burst into glorious flowers in the spring, he overcame harsh persecution and adversity to achieve magnificent victory in both kosen-rufu and life. He passed away in the season of spring when the cherry trees bloom.

As a result, he bequeathed to us a rhythm of progression so that, each spring amid the cherry blossoms, we could reaffirm our commitment as successors and accelerate our momentum toward May 3, Soka Gakkai Day.”[2]Ibid.

(p. 3)

Notes   [ + ]

1. SGI President Ikeda translated from the April 2, 2016, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, the Soka Gakkai’s daily newspaper.
2. Ibid.