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Sunday, August 31, 2014

The honzon and practice of SGI/NST need to be examined very carefully.

"SGI talks about "cause and effect through chanting". The idea that "all you have to do is chant" in order to gain benefit, is neither borne out by experience nor the writings of Nichiren. Correct doctrine and behavior is equally important. If an object of devotion is based on deception and incorrect doctrine, all the sincerity in the world will not lead to benefit.

Daisaku Ikeda's second son died suddenly of a perforated ulcer while a student at a prestigious Japanese college. Ikeda's oldest son has been in an out of mental hospitals with severe mental disorders. He must take high doses of psychoactive drugs to control his condition. Makaguchi, the first President of the Soka Gakkai died of starvation in a Japanese prison during the last days of the war. All nine of Makaguchi's children died during his seventeen years of faith in Taisekeji.

When I joined the SGI in the late ‘60's, I couldn't convince my friend, Gloria, to join. Her husband, Gary, had been a member for years. One day he didn't show up for Men's Division Bagpipe practice. Another member went over to his house to find out why he missed practice. He found Gary, eyes gouged out, ears cut off, head almost decapitated and mutilated that. He was murdered by the Manson family, whom he taught to chant the Daimoku. Obviously, Gloria did not think that Gary had been "protected" by the SGI/NST Gohonzon.

Three friends of mine were killed in a horrible car accident (their fault) rushing to "Kotekitai" practice, in preparation for some big parade in San Francisco. My old chapter chief lost two of his children (one was decapitated in a freak accident) and a third child was institutionalized. Over the years, many sincere friends died of diseases that they could not overcome by chanting in the SGI/NST. I could fill pages with "actual proof" horror stories that I personally witnessed. It seems that the wrong honzon cannot give "protection" or "benefit" any more than the claims of all other religions.

Hence, the correct doctrine is pivotal. Yet, SGI/NST people keep saying, "I don't want to get theoretical. I just chant and have actual proof in my life." Nichiren's position was quite different. To him, the correct doctrine was most important. Buddhist practice was of no avail if it didn't accord with the Lotus Sutra, the correct Gohonzon, and the refutation of provisional teachings. Taisekiji's theology is a provisional teaching, based upon a fake honzon, and it contradicts the words of Nichiren.

The honzon and practice of SGI/NST need to be examined very carefully.  For every "benefit" there are ten instances of punishment.  IF SGI practice afforded universal benefit as they claim, why have 95% of all members quit? If even Ikeda could not be assured of the protection of the Buddhas, then the statements of universal SGI "actual proof" is untrue.  If "actual proof" were the only criteria, then the events of the last four years between the  SGI and the Nichiren Shoshu speak volumes about "punishment". -- Bruce Maltz

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