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Ikeda Sensei

Advancing With Our Inspiring Fellow Members

Photo by DoctorEgg / Getty Images.

The following essay from Ikeda Sensei was translated from the April 14, 2023, issue of the Soka Gakkai’s daily newspaper, Seikyo Shimbun. 

My treasures are my inspiring fellow members who devote themselves with unwavering faith to realizing kosen-rufu and the ideal of “establishing the correct teaching for the peace of the land.”

Nichiren Daishonin, the Buddha of the Latter Day of the Law, praises a longtime dedicated disciple for striving even harder during a time of adversity [namely, the Atsuhara Persecution]: “You demonstrated remarkable resolve during the recent incidents. Many people have mentioned this” (“Many in Body, One in Mind,” The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 1, p. 618). He goes on to say that he has reported all of his disciple’s sincere efforts to the heavenly deities, the protective functions of the universe (see WND-1, 618). I can’t help but read these words as the Daishonin’s praise for all the noble men and women of Soka who are creating waves of courage through taking initiative and leading by example.

In April 1953, the 700th anniversary of the Daishonin first proclaiming his teaching,[1] I called out to members as acting chapter leader of Tokyo’s Bunkyo Chapter: “Demonstrate excellent character and burn with a resolute spirit of progress! If we fight our hardest, devilish functions will disperse. Uniting in the determination to win without fail, let’s joyfully and cheerfully expand our movement!” And they responded with new confidence, fostering capable people and rapidly developing Bunkyo into one of the Soka Gakkai’s top-ranking chapters, their lives radiant with benefit.

With gratitude for those members who strove alongside me, I wrote in my diary: “Those faces, those people and their accomplishments will forever be illuminated by the light of the Mystic Law.”[2]

In the seven decades since then, the members of our main bastion, Tokyo, have set wonderful examples of not only transforming their own lives through human revolution but also of positively transforming their external environments and communities. Their triumphs shine ever brighter as a source of hope for Japan and the world.

Three years after our great success in Bunkyo Chapter and right after our victory in the uphill struggle of the Osaka Campaign,[3] Mr. Toda composed a poem envisaging the challenges ahead:

As you begin the ascent
of a still
steeper mountain,
continue the journey of kosen-rufu
with firm resolve.

I assured Mr. Toda: “You have nothing to worry about. I am here! I will fight!”

He replied with a smile: “Yes. That’s right. I can put my mind at ease because you are here, Daisaku. Thank you!”

And now, I have beloved disciples who share my commitment. They are undertaking the journey of kosen-rufu with the same spirit as me, undaunted by steep mountains. Every day I watch over our young successors growing into ever-victorious “Heroes of the World”[4] amid their unremitting efforts to put Buddhism into action in society and to win based on Buddhism. Nothing gives me greater reassurance. 

The Daishonin lamented the turmoil of Japanese society in his day and the untold suffering it caused women and children (see “On Filial and Unfilial Conduct,” WND-1, 1034). 

A society filled with the smiles of women, mothers and children living in happiness and peace is the vision at the heart of the ideal of “establishing the correct teaching for the peace of the land.” 

Let’s forge ahead energetically to May 3, Soka Gakkai Day—which this year also marks the 35th anniversary of the inauguration of Soka Gakkai Mothers Day—alongside our inspiring fellow members, brimming with the boundless life force of time without beginning!

June 2, 2023, World Tribune, pp. 2–3


  1. On April 28, 1253, at Seicho-ji, Nichiren Daishonin first proclaimed Nam-myoho-renge-kyo to be the sole correct Buddhist teaching for leading all people in the Latter Day of the Law to enlightenment. April 2023 marks the 770th anniversary of that occasion. ↩︎
  2. A Youthful Diary, p. 148. ↩︎
  3. Osaka Campaign: In May 1956, the Kansai members, uniting around a young Daisaku Ikeda, who had been dispatched by second Soka Gakkai President Josei Toda to support them, introduced 11,111 households to Nichiren Buddhism. ↩︎

  4. The Hero of the World is another name for the Buddha, so called because he valiantly confronts all sufferings and leads all people to enlightenment. ↩︎

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