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Ikeda Sensei

Forge Ahead With Hearts Bright Like the Sun!


From the June 1, 2019, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, the Soka Gakkai’s daily newspaper.

June 6 is the birthday of first Soka Gakkai President Tsunesaburo Makiguchi. This year marks the 148th anniversary of his birth.

The Soka Gakkai’s greatest pride and honor is having this selfless champion and martyr for peace as our mentor and carrying on his commitment for truth and justice.

June is a month of hope-filled activities for the Soka family as we also celebrate the young women’s division SGI Ikeda Kayo-kai Day (June 4) and Women’s Division Day (June 10).

Mr. Makiguchi worked tirelessly for women’s education since his youth, and devoted his life to spreading the Mystic Law with the earnest wish of enabling women, and especially mothers, to become happy. I’m sure he is watching over our efforts with a happy smile.

Nichiren Daishonin writes, “Unlike most people, in the course of spreading these doctrines of mine I, Nichiren, have occasion to meet with a great many persons” (“Condolences on a Deceased Husband,” The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 2, p. 778). Dialogue dedicated to “establishing the correct teaching for the peace of the land,” which the Daishonin carried out fearlessly in the face of persecution, was revived in modern times by Mr. Makiguchi, who himself met “with a great many persons.”

Always energetic and full of vigor, Mr. Makiguchi declared: “Being active is the key to good health.” During World War II, when the transportation system was poor, he visited Kyushu [the southernmost of Japan’s four main islands] on numerous occasions. On his way there, he would often stop in Hyogo Prefecture, where he met with and encouraged one person after another, helping them forge a connection with Buddhism. He personally established the Kobe Chapter during the pioneering days of our organization.

Mr. Makiguchi stressed that unless we carry out bodhisattva practice, we cannot attain Buddhahood. By striving in bodhisattva practice toward realizing Nichiren’s ideal of “establishing the correct teaching for the peace of the land,” we are advancing along the path of Buddhahood together with our great predecessor.

In one of his letters, Nichiren encourages the lay nun Myoho, a disciple who continued to devote herself to kosen-rufu despite the loss of her husband and the opposition she encountered from others because of her faith. He praises her, saying that she was just like Bodhisattva Never Disparaging and was also deserving of the name Buddha Gladly Seen by All Living Beings (see “Reply to the Lay Nun Myoho,” WND-1, 1105–06).

I am confident that Nichiren’s praise for the lay nun Myoho applies equally to all our women’s and young women’s division members today.

Sixty-eight years ago (in 1951), as war raged on the Korean Peninsula, the women’s division and young women’s division were formed, embodying a vow and prayer for peace. Since then, day after day, the women of Soka around the world, in the spirit of Bodhisattva Never Disparaging, have tirelessly gone among the people to engage in dialogue with the conviction that all people possess the Buddha nature.

They are imparting the great light of courage arising from the Buddhist principle that “earthly desires lead to enlightenment,” with the unshakable belief that any adversity can be overcome and any destiny transformed. They have built a network of happiness and peace that is inspiring people around the world.

On June 7, the high school division will celebrate the 55th anniversary of its establishment. How overjoyed Mr. Makiguchi would be to see the wonderful development of these torchbearers of justice, who are becoming “bluer than the indigo”! (see “Offerings in the Snow,” WND-2, 809).

Mr. Makiguchi stressed that whatever one’s age, a person who keeps growing day after day is young. Let’s forge ahead again today with a youthful spirit, our hearts bright like the sun.

Let’s continue to expand our life state by meeting and speaking with others, and enact a triumphant drama, confident that our efforts for peace will bring good fortune and security.

Radiant as the Sun, Fearless as the Lion

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