The trouble with enabling people to see that SGI is a cult if you live in the UK is that a lot of the red flags have been toned-down here. Or at least that is my experience in the districts I have practiced with. Up until the Mentor/Disciple personality cult stuff started to be shoved down our throats 3 to 4 years ago, there was a deliberate effort to not seem cult-like. There is very little pressure to contribute to the Kosenrufu fund, which in the UK happens 3 times a year. There is no suggested percentage - you have to guess. There is even no obligation to make a contribution when you receive gohonzon (inc.uding omomori and tokuso) and many members never contribute either when receiving gohonzon or to the three funds a year.
The same subtlety applies to encouraging members to buy the monthly magazine as well, lots of leaders and members don't actually subscribe and there is no pressure to do so.. Japanese leaders are not in great evidence. In fact I've been told that the General director and his female equivalent have to be British Citizens.
It seems that the UK is not an income stream for SGI-Japan. Possibly because us Brits are not so heavily coerced into giving. Is SGI-UK therefore a vanity or prestige project for Ikeda?
Unlike in the United States, the public can see the accounts of the charity [www.charitycommission.gov.uk] and some years we aren't getting in enough donations from UK members to keep the UK organisation running. I'm not very experienced at reading accounts but SGI-UK received an injection of some £26 million in 2006 from the Japanese mothership, so it appears that money is flowing away from Japan and into the UK rather than in the other direction.
One inexplicable item I found from glancing through the latest (2009) accounts was that Robert Samuels (General Director-staff) and Kazuo Fuji (vice-general director - staff) had huge salary hikes in 2009:
R A Samuels - General Director 2008 salary= £57,327 2009 salary=£91,325
K Fujii - Vice-General Director 2008 salary= £59,799 2009 salary=£112,470
They had both been steadily receiving just under £60,000 for many previous years, then suddenly their salaries are nearly doubled. Remember these are Pounds sterling not Dollars - these latest salaries are very substantial.
Can anyone tell me what that might be all about? Hush money? Or am i seeing deception and conspiracy everywhere now? :-)