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Monday, April 4, 2016

"For every 'benefit' there are dozens of bad stories." -- Maltz

"All the talk about "cause and effect through chanting" is really deceptive. The idea that "all you have to do is chant" and ignore whether the doctrine has been altered, is not borne out by experience nor the scriptures. If the "honzon" is an object of deception then all the sincerity or cogent arguments in the world doesn't make it correct.

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. Makiguchi (so-called "first president" of Soka Gakkai, even though Makiguchi's organization was an education reform society called the Soka Kyoiku Kai) died of starvation in a Japanese prison during the last days of the war. All nine of Makiguchi's children died during his seventeen years of faith in Taisejiji.

When I first joined back 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 grisly mutilations that I won't mention. Gary was murdered by the Manson family, whom he had "shakabukued". Obviously, Gloria did not think that Gary was "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 the most important thing. All Buddhist practice was of no avail if it didn't accord with the Lotus Sutra, the correct Gohonzon and the refutation of provisional teachings. Taisekeji's theology is a provisional teaching, based upon a fake honzon, that contradicts the words of Nichiren.

It seems that the honzon and the practice of SGI/NST needs to be examined very carefully. For every "benefit" there are dozens of bad stories.  Otherwise, why have 95% of all members quit? If Ikeda himself could not be assured of the protection of the Buddha, then the statements of universal SGI "actual proof" are 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". -- Maltz

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