One of my first experiences with obsession with Ikeda's lame writing was back in the early 80's when they were pushing REALLY HARD for the young men to memorize the poem "To My Young American Friends." I never did, simply because I couldn't stand the thing. I never understood how others could get up at meetings and recite such drivel from memory ("YOU! YOUTH! OOOOHHHH YOUTH!!") with tears flowing down their faces. I remember thinking that it was all way over the top and cuckoo for cocoa puffs. Nope, I was never a fan of any of his works. I think the guy's an insecure pretentious hack and the people fawning over it are not in their right minds. -- Hitch
I too tried to memorize it, at the insistence of Vice General Director David Kasahara. Only one of my friends and fellow YMDs succeeded. He was propped up at more than several meetings to recite it, to the rousing cheers and applause of the brainwashed Ikeda groupies. Funny, he appears to be the least happy and successful of all my friends who I knew growing up. He actually thought and stated many times that he was going to be a senator. Why? Because he could memorize and recite Daisaku Ikeda's poem? Craziest thing, he couldn't get above a C- on a college english course but he could memorize 200 lines of Ikeda's drivel word for word. I write this not to deprecate him. He could be loads of fun and is a source of some of my fondest memories. I write this to show the lie of the Soka Gakkai which promises its members that all their desires will be fulfilled if only they embrace the oneness of mentor and disciple. Certainly, no one I know embraced Ikeda more than he, and not one of his great wishes has come to fruition.