re: SGI/NST property
from BlancheFromage sent
Sure. It's the World Culture Center or whatever in Santa Monica - SGI-USA HQ - and the El Paso community center - both owned by "Nichiren Shoshu Soka Gakkai of America".
There's some background and update in this post (including comments) and more here, including a link to the real estate information for the El Paso center.
And what we found astonished us - the World Culture Center there at 525 Wilshire Blvd. in Santa Monica is owned by...wait for it...Nichiren Shoshu Soka Gakkai of America. Now. Almost 25 years after the "excommunication". The El Paso, TX, kaikan is owned by that same entity - she uncovered documentation on 3 mechanics' liens against that property from August, September, and October 10 of THIS year . The responsible party was, again, Nichiren Shoshu Soka Gakkai of America.
That should be enough to get you started. Also, I found a reference that indicated that it was one Daisaku Ikeda who selected the man who would become High Priest Nikken for that position:
Did you see that source I quoted that reported that High Priest Nichikan, Nikken's predecessor, left Nichiren Shoshu with the Myoshinkai, died a scant 3 months later, and Ikeda himself hand-selected Nikken to be the next high priest?? Read all about it here, down in the comments - here's an excerpt from that last link (with my commentary, of course):
From Daniel Montgomery's 1991 book, "Fire in the Lotus", pp. 200-201:
During the 1970s, the alliance between High Priest Nittatsu Hosoi with his hierarchical clerical organization and President Ikeda with his hierarchical secular society began to show signs of strain. The largest religious edifice in the world was not big enough for both of them. By the end of the decade the High Priest and the President were no longer on speaking terms, and the question of legal ownership had gone into the courts. In an effort to defuse the situation, Ikeda resigned as president of Sokagakkai in 1979, naming himself president of a new organization, Soka Gakkai International.
Of course he named himself president. The monarch does as he pleases, after all. What would he do instead, hold an election?? Don't make me laugh! Just as he named himself the 3rd President of the Soka Gakkai, he named himself President of the SGI. Ikeda is a dictator who does whatever he wishes, and nobody else has any say in any of it.
But it gets better:
He need not have bothered. The courts ruled that Sokagakkai, which had paid all the bills, was the legal owner of its own property, the Sho-Hondo. High Priest Nittatsu Hosoi would have exclusive rights to the temple only on one day every month.
I have not been able to find corroboration of this anywhere else, but that doesn't mean it's true. We've seen how SGI scrubs negative information off the Net.
He was forced to resign his position at Nichiren Shoshu, and Sokagakkai was able to hand-pick his successor.
That would be the most evil person in the world, Nikken O_O
The campaign of hate seems to find fertile ground among the members of Soka Gakkai Japanese, who come to paint Nikken as "more evil than Osama bin Laden". Source
Hand-picked by Ikeda. Installed by Ikeda after forcing Nittatsu Shonin out.
But let's continue - it gets better:
In defiance, Nittatsu founded a new organization claiming to represent traditional Nichiren Shoshu. It was called Nichiren Shoshu Yoshinkai
Or "Shoshinkai" * Edit: Myoshinkai - not quite the same as Shoshinkai, but when I made this post, I was confused o_O
and it appealed to those temples, priests, and laymen who have never felt at ease with the flamboyant leadership of Sokagakkai, but its following was small. Although some members of Sokagakkai joined the new organization, and others dropped out altogether, most preferred Ikeda to the dour high priest.
Considering that a full 1/3 of Nichiren Shoshu's priests left in protest and joined with Shoshinkai, it was hardly a minor upheaval!
(Actually, I believe it was 2/3)
In spite of the crises as the beginning and end of the decade, Sokagakkai continued to advance during the 1970s and on into the 1980s. It built the biggest temple that Japan had ever seen, and consolidated its position of leadership within Nichiren Shoshu.
Followup post to my first reply to you query: According to the "Fire in the Lotus" scenario, Nittatsu Shonin left Nichiren Shoshu with the Myoshinkai, to head up the Myoshinkai, in, like, April of that year, and he died in early July, if memory serves. So this schism wasn't headed up by The Big Guy Nittatsu for long - just a coupla months, and then he was dead! The Soka Gakkai could definitely paper over that little two-months interval.
Look what happened - after Sho-Hondo, major schism within NS priesthood over the growing power and influence of SG; numerous priests excommunicated. They go over here and start their own sect, Kenshokai. High Priest Nittatsu goes with them! Now there's no High Priest in Taiseki-ji - how embarrassing!
Soka Gakkai, flush with victory, appoints its own replacement. New crisis within the priesthood, as 1/3 of the NS priests (or is it 2/3?) left because Nikken's ascension to the High Priesthood was invalid. Yeah, it was 2/3. But the SG defended Nikken's succession! (For obvious reasons, apparently)
And then Nikken played his part, the two corporations established separate identities, but they remain in bed with regard to at least TWO major property investments here in the US - the SGI-USA HQ complex in Santa Monica and the Houston center. Both are owned by "Nichiren Shoshu Soka Gakkai of America" - even now, a full quarter century later.
Well, the story about Nittatsu is that he died suddenly and only the future Nikken Abe was at his deathbed to hear his final wishes, which, of course, were for the future Nikken Abe to take over as High Priest of Nichiren Shoshu. This was HIGHLY irregular, to say the least - the succession was supposed to be a dignified, documented, dotting-all-the-i's-crossing-all-the-t's sort of event in front of everyone, that would follow a set of traditional ceremonial steps. Uh uh O_O
In fact, it sounds oddly similar to Ikeda's story of rushing to Toda's deathbed, where he was alone with Toda and the only person to hear Toda's dying wish, that he should become the 3rd President of the Soka Gakkai! When he emerged some hours later, Toda was cold. No amount of magic chant would raise HIM from the dead!
No, wait - I'm confusing myself. Apparently, the Ikeda scenario took place on an elevator shortly before Toda's death, where Toda told Ikeda, in that formal setting likewise without any witnesses, that he should take over the presidency of the Soka Gakkai. But Ikeda was at Toda's deathbed, and apparently didn't allow anyone else to enter the room until Toda'd gone cold.
The fact that it took TWO YEARS after Toda's death before Ikeda took over speaks to the amount of trouble there was in this outcome - apparently, Ikeda had to do quite a bit of work to make it happen.
If I recall correctly, Ikeda has given two separate versions - one in the elevator and the other on the deathbed - where he claims that Toda verbally handed over the reins to him. In both cases, there were no witnesses and Ikeda's accounts have been called into question.
Here's an alternate account, excerpted from a letter written to Ikeda by Masako Yamamoto - wife of the Soka Gakkai Vice President Takamoto:
I once heard the following story from my husband, Mr. Takimoto, who was the first Vice President of the Soka Gakki gave birth to in the 1970's. It was about the transfer ceremony that took place between the 2nd president Josei Toda, and you. One day toward the end of the life of president Toda, who was very ill, my husband was called to his residence to check on his health.While my husband was in the waiting room adjacent to where President Josei Toda lay in bed, the atmosphere in the house suddenly changed. A ceremonial golden folding screen was brought into his room, and Nisshin Takano, a senior Nichiren Shoshu priest, and several of his leaders were called in.Later on, my husband found out that what had happened: You forced everybody to leave the room while you sat alone with president Josei Toda, just as he was trying to talk. 5 minutes later you emerged from the room, stating that president Toda was dead, and he had chosen you as his successor. You would not let anybody in that room until the body was ice cold.No senior leader was in attendance to witness your transfer ceremony with the former president. Reports have it that you chose to become president and took the office- -- stole the position -- from another senior leader, 3rd president Hojo, who was to be the 2nd president. You have since stricken president Hojo's name from all SGI publications.It seems to me that you deeply resented that president Toda did not nominate you as the next president before he died. Your grudge against him prompted you to destroy the hallmarks of his words and guidance one after another. Dark emotions coerced you to destroy even his most profound guidance. Not one of his words are observed in Soka gakkai. Members now are saying that he was a "dupe" and that his guidance was wrong. One SGI member even compared him to a "kindergartner!"When I saw a video of you pounding on the table at Santa Monica, in an angry rage, I felt as if you were pounding on the sincere members.Wife of SGI Vice President Speaks Out Against Daisaku Ikeda
I saw Ikeda in Santa Monica pounding on the table like Khrushchev as well, while watching on a monitor as I was operating the local Kaikan's satellite equipment during a live satellite feed of the meeting. The members barely reacted to Ikeda's odd behavior. They raised one eyebrow and glanced at each other for a about 2 seconds before shaking it off and falling back into their trances, instantly sending Ikeda's temper tantrum down the cult memory hole. When the meeting was over, not a word was said about it.
And nobody was concerned about Williams getting sacked either. I don't think anyone really understood that he was being thrown under the bus - that was something no one could even image happening. Most SGI members are so indoctrinated -mind-controlled - that they just can't conceive of Ikeda being anything other than 100% perfect. It good to be king - but its even better to be king of a cult!
Continued next message:
Ikeda also had to wait until another one of his chief rivals for the position of president, Tsugio Ishida, was out of his way. Ishida was considered to be the number one choice of both Toda and the membership to take over the office:
The late President Toda said of Tsugio Ishida, "Ishida's my eldest son, Daisaku's my second son." He [Ishida] was the elite of the elite in the Gakkai, and was nominated to be the third president ahead of Daisaku. According to the journalist Kunio Naito, who had profoundly intimate relations with the deceased, "Tsugio's mother was the Soka Gakkai Women's Division Chief when Josei Toda was president. His younger sister is the wife of current President Einosuke Akiya. His younger brother, needless to say, is the current Komeito Party Chairman. The Ishida family is known as being far and away an elite family within the Soka Gakkai. Among other things, after graduating from Shiura Engineering College (now called Shiura Engineering Institute), he was designated in 1951 by President Toda to be the first editor of the Seikyo Shinbun, and then the chief of the First Unit of the Youth Division. It's said that at an early age he was the leading candidate to succeed to the presidency. He was unsurpassed in study and theory, and no one within the Gakkai could compare with him from that standpoint."Ishida was three years older than Daisaku and enjoyed the deep trust of president Toda. After filling the above posts, he became the first Lower House Diet member, but he was obliged to recuperate from tuberculosis, and so Daisaku became the third president. It was not long before he revolted against Ikeda. As he successively filled the posts of the Komeito Shinbun Managing Editor and then the Managing Director of the Seikyo Shinbun, he drew a line between himself and Daisaku.This is what Ishida's wife had to say about Ikeda:"When my husband was young, he was told by Toda Sensei to be the third president, but at that time he didn't understand Buddhism very well, and he had a weak constitution, so he declined. So Daisaku became president in place of my husband. However, up until the time Daisaku became president, he seemingly held up my husband as his 'older brother,' but just when he became president, he openly attacked and ridiculed my husband in public.He says, "Ikeda completely bullied Nittatsu Shonin, who was in a relatively weaker position, by making him dependent upon Ikeda's power and money. An intelligence network surrounded the High Priest without interruption 24 hours a day. They were watching for the High Priest's weaknesses and opportunities they could exploit. The goal was to control the sect. Even proceeds which should have gone to the Head Temple were dammed up and siphoned away from all the priests under the High Priest. Listening devices were installed in the inner recesses of Taisekiji, and the High Priest himself discovered them quite by chance when he placed his hands under a table and touched one of them.... Once Ikeda arrogantly shouted at the High Priest, and the High Priest, his body trembling, said, "He treated me just like an errand boy!" Nittatsu Shonin was at once insulted, angry and sad.... Such is the true nature of Ikeda's faith."
Daisaku despised the sect in a way totally unbecoming to a believer. Ishida censures him for this with his vehement writing style. In addition, Ishida indicates that Daisaku directed that attitude not only toward the sect, but also at the family of second president Josei Toda, to whom he should have felt a profound debt of gratitude. "Within ten days of the death of our honored teacher, Josei Toda, Ikeda proceeded to the Toda home, and without handing over the condolence gift of a little over $100,000 which he had taken with him, he took from Ikuko, the wife of Toda Sensei, various articles which had belonged to Toda Sensei.
And here is Ishida's account of Ikeda's "fabrication of Toda's last will and testament:"
However, the highlight of this manuscript is the passage which deals with the "forged last request" put forth by Daisaku when he was chosen to become the third president. Daisaku says that on March 16, 1958, he was told by President Josei Toda in an elevator, "I leave everything to you." In the same manner, he says that on the 29th of the same month, he was told by President Toda just before the latter's death, "Don't retreat a single step. Don't loosen your grip on the chase." At the present time, this is presented as the "authentic history" of the Gakkai. In juxtaposition to that, Ishida gives the following account. "The last request which I received occurred just before 4:00 p.m. on March 16, 1958. Toda said, 'The next president will be determined by all of you. So be on good terms with each other.' All of the attendees received this with feelings of total confidentiality. This was received not just by me myself but there were also just under 50 people in attendance, including General Director Koizumi. All of these people were attendees of the party held in celebration of the completion of the Grand Lecture Hall. Ikeda, as the Chief of Staff, was responsible for outside (on the grounds), and was not present. The above meeting took place in the tatami mat hall on the fourth floor of the Grand Lecture Hall....If events had happened according to Ikeda's account, then Toda Sensei would have deceived the General Director, the Directors, the Chapter Chiefs, the Standing Committee members, the Women's Division Chief, and the Young Men's and Young Women's Division Chiefs. Think about it. Could such an important matter concerning the entire Gakkai have been conducted within an elevator? That would be horrifying to everyone, would it not?"Ishida concludes that topic with his comments concerning the "last will and testament (of Josei Toda)" of March 29. "On the 18th, High Priest Nichijun Shonin paid a visit to Toda Sensei's sickbed.... (Toda Sensei) was unable to answer the High Priest. The visit lasted for 30 minutes, and all during that time, he was capable only of repeatedly responding with 'Hai, hai' ('I understand, I understand'). And that was done with only the weakest of voices.... After March 20th, he was incapable of rising from his bed, even with the help of others. His physical condition declined precipitously, and he was unable to speak.... In spite of that, how is it that around that time he could twice draw only Ikeda close to his bedside? How did Ikeda twice receive voiced directions from Sensei, who was incapable of speech? What did he do, hear Sensei's voiceless speech with the ears in his mind?... It's all a fabrication."Ishida affirms that "Ikeda fabricated the last will and testament of his Master." We have related previously how those two were rivals for the position of the third presidency. But even beyond that, Ishida was in a position to give guidance within the Gakkai from the standpoint of theory. In juxtaposition to this, Daisaku rose from being a "claims collector" for the financial companies President Toda managed, and was part of an "actual practice" faction. Aside from that, they had completely different dispositions. But, Ishida came to look coldly upon Daisaku, who had designs for the presidency regardless of appearances.
The above is from here
Also, a newish source I just recently ran across, Levi McLaughlin, is very interesting: https://www.reddit.com/r/sgiwhistleblowers/comments/5yiz2b/the_soka_gakkai_president_is_subject_to_nobody/and https://www.reddit.com/r/sgiwhistleblowers/comments/5yfqzg/in_placing_toda_upon_a_pedestal_ikeda_has/