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Looking Toward the 2023 Ikeda Wisdom Academy Exam

3 Reasons Why Buddhist Study Is Important

Ikeda Sensei clarifies the importance of Buddhist study in these excerpts from  The Wisdom for Creating Happiness and Peace, part 2, revised edition, pp. 281–85.

Nichiren Buddhism is an unsurpassed philosophy for fostering people of unsurpassed humanity. The passion and power of young people who uphold this priceless philosophy will create a new age.

Why is it important for youth to study the teachings of Nichiren Buddhism?

1) Buddhist study helps us deepen our faith. 

Buddhist study is a beacon illuminating the path of faith. Even the complex workings of negative forces that arise to assail us are clearly revealed for what they are in the bright mirror of the Buddhist teachings. 

Indeed, studying the principles of Buddhism enables us to build our own solid foundation of faith and becomes a power source for our human revolution. …

2) Buddhist study serves as a driving force for kosen-rufu.

To study the writings of Nichiren Daishonin is to come into contact with his spirit; it is to receive powerful encouragement directly from the Buddha of the Latter Day of the Law, as well as guidelines for the promotion of kosen-rufu. 

We can be said to have truly studied Nichiren Buddhism only when we take action in accord with the Daishonin’s writings. There is no genuine Buddhist study without practice. And when we put the teachings into practice, limitless courage wells forth in our lives and we can display boundless ability and strength.

3) Buddhist study lays the foundation for establishing a new humanism.

Our times are rife with serious challenges, including the threat of nuclear war, ethnic conflict, environmental problems, failing education systems and other social issues. Though people long for happiness and world peace, things just grow more chaotic and confused. This results from the lack of a sound life philosophy. 

I believe the teachings of Buddhism alone can shine a light on these problems. Only by grounding ourselves in such Buddhist principles as respect and compassion for life, the oneness of body and mind, and the oneness of living beings and their environment can we open the way to a new humanism. Josei Toda’s Declaration for the Abolition of Nuclear Weapons was also an expression of the life-affirming principles of Buddhism. 

It was Mr. Toda’s conviction that there can be no bright future for humanity unless the youth division members who will shoulder responsibility for the 21st century gain a deep understanding of the philosophy of Nichiren Buddhism, the world’s supreme teaching that can enable all humanity to attain happiness. He was confident that young people who embraced this great philosophy would go on to become world leaders in every field of human endeavor. …

In my youth, I studied the Daishonin’s writings thoroughly, to the extent that I actually committed many of his major writings to memory. That effort has built a foundation that has stood me well for my entire life.

Since March 2021, the Ikeda Wisdom Academy’s fifth class  focused on select lectures by Ikeda Sensei in Learning from Nichiren’s Writings: The Teachings for Victory, volumes 1 and 2. To affirm the content of these lectures, an exam will be offered in early 2023. Here are some details: 

Who can take the exam? 

• All district through national youth leaders.

Where can the exam be taken?

• At local SGI-USA centers. Please check with your local leaders for more information. 

What material will the exam cover?

• Selections from Learning from Nichiren’s Writings: The Teachings for Victory, vols. 1 and 2 

• All the material can be accessed at:

• Material can also be downloaded via:

Will there be a study guide?

• Workbook questions will be published in the November 2022, December 2022 and January 2023 issues of Living Buddhism.

Waking a Brave Heart

On Being Human