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The Brilliant Path of Worldwide Kosen-rufu

Volume 9: Chapter Four—Hope of the People

Chapter Summary

Illustration courtesy of Seikyo Press.

In October 1964, a palpable excitement pervaded Japan about the Olympics, which were taking place in Tokyo. The October 24 closing ceremony highlighted countless dramas of athletes trans-cending national and ethnic differences. Some mingled about while others walked arm in arm around the track.

Shin’ichi Yamamoto watched this closing ceremony on television. Each moment reaffirmed his conviction that differences of nationality, ethnicity and ideology did not stand between the people. And he strongly felt that he must communicate the ideals of global citizenship to everyone in the world.

Around this time, Japan was seeing rapid economic growth. In preparing for the Olympics, many important issues directly affecting people’s daily lives, such as housing, social welfare programs and environmental conservation had been ignored. The Komei Party was established in November 1964 to serve as the “hope of the people”—to actualize political reform that protected the people and reflected their voices.

On December 2, Shin’ichi began writing his novel The Human Revolution at the Soka Gakkai Okinawa Headquarters building. He chose to begin writing there, because the people of Okinawa had truly suffered the bitter trials of war. His deepest wish was to send waves of peace and happiness out from Okinawa.

Shin’ichi’s pen raced, writing the opening words to his novel: “Nothing is more barbarous than war. Nothing is more cruel. And yet, the war dragged on … ”

Filled with joy and a sense of mission, he strove to accurately record the thoughts and truth of his great mentor, Josei Toda.

Unforgettable Scene

Illustration courtesy of Seikyo Press.

Imagining the Mentor’s Heart

On December 2, 1964, while in Okinawa, Shin’ichi Yamamoto took up his pen to begin writing his novel, The Human Revolution.

At the strong request of the Seikyo Shimbun editorial staff, the novel, which Shin’ichi would compose under the pen name Ho Goku, would be serialized in the newspaper from New Year’s Day 1965 …

The Human Revolution would be a novel about the Soka Gakkai’s movement to realize kosen-rufu under the leadership of President Toda. It would be a story of actualizing the most fundamental ideals of peace and happiness for all humanity. The theme of the novel would be that the great human revolution of a single individual can change the destiny of an entire nation, and that of all humankind.

Shin’ichi therefore wanted to begin writing in a place that had experienced the bitter trials of war and where the people had truly suffered. That is why he chose Okinawa.

■  ■  ■

It would begin on July 3, 1945, with Josei Toda’s release from prison. He had chosen this title [Dawn] for the very first chapter because the emergence of this great leader of kosen-rufu from prison was the dawn that heralded a new age of peace for all humanity.

But after writing the chapter title, he stopped. He couldn’t think of the opening words.

■  ■  ■

He said to himself: “When Mr. Toda saw the scorched ruins of Tokyo, I am sure that more than anything else he keenly felt the pain of the people who had suffered so terribly in the war. He must have been filled with a hatred for war, an act of the greatest barbarity and folly. His heart must have burned with indignation at the leaders who drove the people to war.”

As Shin’ichi Yamamoto imagined his mentor Josei Toda’s feelings, suddenly the right words to begin his novel came to him: “Nothing is more barbarous than war. Nothing is more cruel. And yet, the war dragged on.” Shin’ichi’s pen raced. He wrote several more lines and then stopped to read them. He felt that he had been able to express himself openly and honestly. This is it! I can work with this! he thought.

After writing the opening words, his pen started to move swiftly. (The New Human Revolution, vol. 9, pp. 285–88)

The chapter summaries were originally published in the June 5, 2019, Seikyo Shimbun, while the “Unforgettable Scenes” were originally published in the June 11, 2021, issue.

Key Passage

A true politician does not seek to rule the people. They serve the people and devote their lives to working for them. (NHR-9, 321)

Volume 9: Chapter Three—Brilliant Light

Excerpts From Nichiren’s Writings in Volume 9