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Ikeda Sensei

Bringing Flowers of Dialogue to Bloom in Our Communities and the World


From the Jan. 15, 2019, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, the Soka Gakkai’s daily newspaper

I’m very happy to hear that our members in Japan and throughout the world have started the year off with even greater vigor and energy.

When British historian Arnold J. Toynbee and I concluded our dialogue, he gripped my hand tightly and urged me, someone 40 years his junior, to continue pursuing dialogues for peace in order to open a brighter future.

He said to the effect: “Mr. Ikeda, the Middle Way you advocate and practice is indeed the path that humankind must follow. Please engage in dialogue with people around the world to unite humanity.” I still remember his voice.

The Middle Way refers to the wisdom to choose the lofty path of humanism and respect for the dignity of life, and tenaciously create value amid the ever-changing realities of society, based on the Mystic Law, the fundamental Law of the universe.

We are now entering an age in which this wisdom that we of the Soka Gakkai cherish will brightly illuminate our confused and troubled times more than ever.

Supporting, encouraging and helping one another, united in the spirit of “many in body, one in mind,” let us continue to resolutely achieve victory after victory in our efforts, for the sake of the prosperity of our communities and societies, world peace and the future of humankind.

On March 30, 1954, second Soka Gakkai President Josei Toda appointed me youth division chief of staff.

In my diary that day, I wrote: “As I take on a more and more central role in the Soka Gakkai, I must propel kosen-rufu forward … To spread the Mystic Law—that is my mission.”

Turning my thoughts to the problems roiling the world, I also wrote down the following passage from Nichiren Daishonin’s writings: “In the final analysis, unless we succeed [in our aims], these disasters will continue unabated” (“The Treatment of Illness,” The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 1, p. 1114).

People cannot live with peace of mind unless their society is truly safe and tranquil. The youth of Soka courageously rise into action and work for peace and happiness for themselves and others. In the process of their steadfast efforts, they carry out their human revolution and positively transform their karma. Their efforts also contribute directly to the realization of Nichiren’s ideal of “establishing the correct teaching for the peace of the land.”

I am extremely proud to see our youthful successors everywhere creating an inspiring network of people dedicated to the cause of good, with the spirit of being “youth division chiefs of staff” of their respective local areas.

I would like to share with you, my beloved disciples who are united with me in spirit, a passage from Nichiren’s writings that I engraved in my heart while I was youth division chief of staff:

You must simply make up your mind … The reason that you have survived until now … was so that you would meet with this affair. This is where you will cross the Uji River. This is where you will ford the Seta. This will determine whether you win honor or disgrace your name … You should pray intently that Shakyamuni, Many Treasures, and the Buddhas of the ten directions will all gather and enter into your body to assist you. (“Reply to Yasaburo,” WND-1, 829)

With your minds and bodies brimming with “the power that has the lion’s ferocity” (see The Lotus Sutra and Its Opening and Closing Sutras, p. 258) as taught in the Lotus Sutra, summon forth strong life force to blast away all obstacles and negative functions, including the devil of illness, and vibrantly take the lead for kosen-rufu!

My wife and I are earnestly chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo for all of you, our precious members everywhere.

Let’s challenge ourselves with a positive spirit!

The Magnificent Ceremony on March 16

Engaging in Dialogue With Bright and Open Hearts