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‘Rebuilding the Foundation’

At the Central Executive Committee Conference, representative leaders discuss ways to strengthen the foundations of our movement for peace.

Members in Philadelphia. Photo by Jonathan Wilson.

SANTA MONICA, Calif.—Olivia Saito was a zone young women’s leader in New Orleans when, in 2013, the SGI-USA launched a national effort to introduce 3,000 young people to Buddhism. Truth be told, she struggled with the emphasis on propagation and chanted desperately to grasp the spirit behind it.

Soon after, she was at a Mardi Gras parade with friends when a crowd charged toward them; someone had just been shot and killed a block away. “The thing was, within five minutes, everyone went back to partying,” Ms. Saito recalled. “That’s when I truly awakened to my vow to transform my community.”

On March 5, 2022, the SGI-USA Central Executive Committee (CEC) held its first quarterly conference of the year at the SGI-USA Headquarters in Santa Monica, California, where they discussed the next steps in developing the organization’s twin focuses toward 2030: “The District Is the Core” and “Propagation Renaissance,” namely fortifying the foundations of the district, youth division and propagation. (See Adin Strauss’ message on p. 7.)

Wisely spread the light of peace.

In a moving message to the conference, Ikeda Sensei said he was sending daimoku and his best wishes to all his “noble, treasured friends in America” and encouraged the participants to continue chanting daimoku like a roaring lion and progressing with the unity of “many in body, one in mind.”

Sensei continued:

Filled with pride and confidence as someone who embodies the Mystic Law, I ask each of you to continue wisely spreading the light of peace, the light of hope and the light of happiness.

Propagation is the direct path to transforming our destiny and society.

In closing remarks, SGI-USA Women’s Leader Naoko Leslie expressed her deepest appreciation to everyone for their support of the victorious February women’s and young women’s intro meetings, where more than 32,800 women and nonbinary members and guests gathered in celebration of SGI-USA Women’s Day (Feb. 27) and the 70th anniversary of the Kamata Campaign.[1]

Ms. Leslie encouraged members to continue this great momentum by inviting all the precious youth guests to the March Youth General Meetings  (see “Dynamic Progress of Youth,” p. 8), and all other guests to the March Kosen-rufu Gongyo, discussion and district study meetings.

She then shared these words from volume 7 of The New Human Revolution, where Sensei urges members to redouble their efforts to spread Nichiren Buddhism in society, writing:

When we wholeheartedly talk to friends about Buddhism, joy wells forth, and our state of life expands. This is because the moment that we engage in Buddhist dialogue, the immense life of a Bodhisattva of the Earth pulses within our being.

Through our practice of propagation, we can carry out our human revolution. Propagation is the direct path to transforming our destiny and that of society, and to establishing lasting peace and happiness. (revised edition, p. 110)

Toward the March Youth General Meetings, Ms. Leslie encouraged the members, as great protagonists of kosen-rufu, to “create a history that will be engraved in our lives for all eternity as our joy and pride, which we can proudly report to Sensei!”

—Prepared by the World Tribune staff


  1. In February 1952, Ikeda Sensei, then an advisor to Tokyo’s Kamata Chapter, initiated a dynamic propagation campaign. Together with the Kamata members, he broke through the previous monthly record of some 100 new households by introducing Nichiren Buddhism to 201 new households. ↩︎

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