Encouragement

Let Every Day Be Soka Gakkai Mother’s Day!

SGI President Ikeda's Monthly Message.


This monthly encouragement by SGI President Daisaku Ikeda was originally published in the May 2018 issue of the Daibyakurenge, the Soka Gakkai’s monthly study journal.

Photo: Seiko Press
Photo: Seikyo Press

Though the rain may fall and the wind may blow, the sun always rises.

The women of Soka, the suns of kosen-rufu, never cease moving forward.

The Lotus Sutra says that to share even one phrase of the correct teaching with another person is to do the work of the Buddha (see The Lotus Sutra and Its Opening and Closing Sutras, p. 200).

In The Record of the Orally Transmitted Teachings, Nichiren Daishonin touches on three important points in sharing Buddhism with others: having “gentle forbearance,” the spirit of “not begrudging one’s life” and the “concern a mother has for her child” (see pp. 84–85).

Just as the Daishonin states, our remarkable women’s division members spread the Mystic Law with wise patience, fearless courage and all-embracing compassion, imparting the light of happiness and peace to those around them.

While facing their own hardships, the mothers of kosen-rufu chant Nam-myoho-renge-kyo for their friends who are struggling, and wholeheartedly support them in overcoming their problems. They embody the spirit of the Buddha.

The actions of Soka women, who continuously encourage others with their genuine, unaffected smiles, are undeniably the actions of the Buddha.
Because of our women’s division members, the Soka family is bright and warm, kosen-rufu advances without limit and the eternal prosperity of the Mystic Law is ensured.

May 3—Soka Gakkai Day—is our New Year’s Day. It is also Soka Gakkai Mother’s Day. On this day, in addition to renewing our vow for kosen-rufu,
we express our heartfelt gratitude to the mothers of Soka, who are equal to Buddhas, praying that they will enjoy infinite good fortune.

Nichiren repeatedly urged his female disciples to meet and study together. For instance, he writes: “I hope you will read this letter over and over again together” (“The Gods Same Birth and Same Name,” The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 1, p. 315); and “Since you two are of the same mind, have someone read this letter to you and listen to it together” (“Letter to the Lay Nun of Ko,” WND-1, 595).

Throughout Japan and around the world, women’s division members are regularly meeting in small groups to study and practice Nichiren Buddhism, helping one another to bring their Buddha nature to shine as they move forward together. Such heart-to-heart gatherings are noble assemblies that deeply accord with the Daishonin’s spirit. They are spreading the seeds of happiness. Nichiren says that hearing about the Mystic Law becomes the seed for attaining Buddhahood (see WND-1, 882).

My wife, Kaneko, always made time to participate in informal discussions and small meetings. The members she met there, precious fellow Bodhisattvas of the Earth, were all bravely challenging their struggles head-on. She would often share these words of second Soka Gakkai President Josei Toda to the effect: “If, when you are in a seemingly desperate situation, you pray with the determination not to retreat a single step, you will start to transform karma into mission.”

The Soka network of encouragement gives rise to such positive dramas of human revolution. The harmonious and vibrant alliance of Soka women, who warmly embrace everyone, is an oasis bringing fresh vitality to their families, communities and societies. It is a source of hope for world peace.

Nichiren writes, “The great ocean is shallow compared to the profoundness of the debt you owe your mother” (“The Four Virtues and the Four Debts of Gratitude,” WND-2, 637). When we think of our hardworking mothers—including the mothers of kosen-rufu—a powerful strength as boundless as the ocean fills our beings. Let us make every day Soka Gakkai Mother’s Day as we advance energetically again with the sun!

Our sunlike
network of women
never wavers.
A shimmering breeze
of eternity, joy, true self and purity.

(pp. 4-5)

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