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Switch to Forum Live View Is Sokka Gakkai for me?
5 years ago  ::  Jan 30, 2009 - 4:04PM #11
KittenlyGirl
Posts: 8
I found it impossible to be Catholic and remain in SGI.   They don't believe in God and I was made to feel uncomfortable because I did.   

I felt very pressured to donate when I went to a Queens Center meeting in Forest Hills. 

I was very open when I first came into SGI.   This was my first Buddhism experience.   Fortunately, I am not disinchanted from Buddhism just the commercial feel of SGI

The Ikeda love was more than I could handle.  Like I said in my other post do a google search on SGI and Ikeda.   Don't rely on SGI material.   The Ikeda film they showed there was pure propaganda of the worst kind.   If you're anything like me and you are turned off by rich trappings, posturing and pagentry, you will be turned off this outward showing of oppulance.   

The need to bring new members in.   I never experienced this as a Catholic.   I never had a priest tell us that we were having a membership drive this month and we should strive to bring a new member in.   It really bothered me. 

Based on your post I don't think you will find what you're looking for in SGI
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 30, 2009 - 8:22PM #12
KittenlyGirl
Posts: 8

anarchy1 wrote:

I think that I am more then able to determine whether something is or is not for me solely based on myself.

DL, you did give the other side and I appreciate that very much.


I was not implying that you couldn't find out for yourself.  I think that is very important.   I was brought into this by someone and I thought she was going to be a friend, but people who are going to be friends should be careful not to attack someone's faith, and she was extremely belittling of my faith in God.   And I had other people at a couple of meetings tell me that they did not see how I would be able to be a Nicherin Buddhist, or an SGI Buddhist, and have a belief in God and, I'm sorry, I'm not letting go of that.

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5 years ago  ::  Jan 31, 2009 - 10:08AM #13
Neverdespise
Posts: 270
My disagreement with the SGI perspective is soteriological and I will attempt to prove that homage and reverence of the Original Eternal Buddha Shakyamuni and not another "archetype", is a fundamental component of the doctrine of salvation of the Lotus Sutra and Nichiren Daishonin. To reject this Buddha for an impersonal Buddha-nature or another archetype [such as Nichiren] and thus to take this particular Buddha out of the Law, is a serious mistake and a cause for descending into the Lower Worlds, according to Nichiren.

"The Lotus Sutra states, "I alone can save them" (Chapter 3) and "I likewise am the Father of the World, The One who saves from the various sufferings and travails."  (Chapter 16)

Nichiren says, "Bear in mind that the twenty-eight chapters of the Lotus Sutra contain only a few passages elucidating the truth, but a great many words of praise." In the same work, Nichiren writes:

"Only the Lotus Sutra represents the wonderful teaching preached directly from the golden mouth of Shakyamuni Buddha, who is perfectly endowed with the three bodies. Therefore, even Universal Worthy and Manjushri were hardly able to expound so much as a single phrase or verse of it. How much more difficult then must it be for us, who are no more than ordinary people living in this latter age, to embrace even one or two words of this sutra! (The Blessings of the Lotus Sutra)

Is it possible that salvation will take place in one who lacks gratitude? Can one possible obtain the fruit of Supreme Perfect Enlightenment by rejecting or failing to recognize one's loving father while praising and acknowledging a stranger as one's real father? Is not gratitude an essential component to the doctrine of salvation?

Nichiren states over and over, "Shakyamuni is the only Buddha endowed with all three virtues and to whom we owe a profound debt of gratitude." (Encouragement to a Sick Person)

and again, referring to Shakyamuni Buddha

"The debt of gratitude we owe him is deeper than the ocean, weightier than the earth, vaster than the sky."

Is not the vertical gratitude to Shakyamuni Buddha in enabling us to encounter the Law and to obtain Buddhahood fundamental to the horizontal transmission of the Dharma in gratitude to all people?

One who lacks gratitude for Shakyamuni Buddha is no better than an animal according to Nichiren Daishonin and his attainments can not possibly go beyond that of the World of Animality. Nichiren, warning of the effect of embracing an archetype other than Shakyamuni Buddha writes,

“All the four directions will be afflicted by drought, and evil omens will appear again and again. The ten evil acts will increase greatly, particularly greed, anger, and foolishness, and people will think no more of their fathers and mothers than does the roe deer. Living beings will decline in numbers, in longevity, physical strength, dignity, and enjoyment. They will become estranged from the delights of the human and heavenly realms, and all will fall into the paths of evil. The wicked rulers and monks who perform these ten evil acts will curse and destroy my correct teaching and make it difficult for those in the human and heavenly realms to stay there. At that time the benevolent deities and heavenly kings, who would ordinarily take pity on living beings, will abandon this impure and evil nation, and all will make their way to other regions.” (On Establishing the Correct Teachings)

He also writes, referring to the Lotus Sutra:

"Thus it was revealed that Shakyamuni had long been the Buddha since the eternal past and it became clear that various Buddhas in other worlds were all manifestations of Shakyamuni Buddha. Now, however, as Shakyamuni was proved to be the Eternal Buddha, those Buddhas in the Flower Garland Sutra, or Buddhas in the Hodo, Hannya, or Great Sun Buddha sutras all became subordinates of Shakyamuni Buddha." (Kaimoku Sho, p. 174, translated by
Kyotsu Hori, 1987)

and

"Since Shakyamuni Buddha is eternal and all other Buddhas in the universe are His manifestations..." (Kaimoku Sho, translated by Kyotsu Hori, p.176).

and

"Since Sakyamuni Buddha is eternal and all other Buddhas in the universe are His manifestations, then those great bodhisattvas converted by manifested Buddhas are also disciples of Lord Sakyamuni Buddha. If the "Life Span of the Buddha" chapter had not been expounded, it would be like the sky without the sun and moon, a country without a king, mountains and rivers without gems, or a man without a soul." (Noppa, pg. 176, Kaimoku Sho)

and

"Shakyamuni Buddha, the Lord-preacher of this pure land, has never died in the past, nor will he be born in the future. He exists forever, throughout the past, present and future." (P.100)

The True Object of Worship reads,

"Many wooden statues and portraits were made of Shakyamuni Buddha as He
preached Hinayana and quasi-Mahayana sutras, but statues and portraits of the Eternal Shakyamuni Buddha revealed in the Juryo Chapter of the Lotus Sutra were never made. Now, in the beginning of Mappo, is it not the time that such statues and portraits are made?" (P.104 NOPPA)

I can supply ninety or so similar passages.

Mark
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5 years ago  ::  Feb 03, 2009 - 11:49AM #14
etoro
Posts: 565
Among the secrets to attaining Buddhahood through the teaching of the Lotus Sutra is to awaken to the relationship between the True Buddha and the emanation Buddhas which make appearance in accordance with causes and conditions. The Shakyamuni Buddha who appeared in India 2500 years ago was an emanation Buddha who made an appearance in accordance with causes and conditions. The conditions itself were the great degree of discrimination, violence and injustice that were experienced by the common people of his time. The cause was the great desire to achieve a path of true freedom. This story is the same for every human society. When it comes to the manifestation of violence, it takes two to tangle. Therefore both sides are at fault. It is those who seek a path of non-violence that awaken the power of the Messiah.  The true Messiah is simply an awareness of the higher consciousness, the very source of all perception, conception, volition and the production of forms. 

Therefore, the true Buddha is the original mind of all living beings, the ninth level of consciousness.  Nichiren states, 

Never seek this Gohonzon outside
yourself. The Gohonzon exists only
within the mortal flesh of us ordinary
people who embrace the Lotus Sutra
and chant Nam-myoho-renge-kyo.
The body is the palace of the ninth
consciousness,8 the unchanging reality
that reigns over all of life’s functions.
To be endowed with the Ten Worlds
means that all ten, without a single
exception, exist in one world. Because
of this it is called a mandala. Mandala
is a Sanskrit word that is translated
as “perfectly endowed” or “a cluster
of blessings.” This Gohonzon also is
found only in the two characters for
faith.9 This is what the sutra means
when it states that one can “gain entrance
through faith alone.


In the "True Object of Worship"  Nichiren also states,

“A time of conflict” in this commentary
refers to the two disasters of
internal strife and invasion from the
western sea that are occurring at present.
At this time the countless Bodhisattvas
of the Earth will appear and
establish in this country the object of
devotion, foremost in Jambudvipa, that
depicts Shakyamuni Buddha of the
essential teaching attending [the eternal
Buddha].
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5 years ago  ::  May 02, 2009 - 5:26AM #15
anarchy
Posts: 18

After a few months, the short answer is that no, SGI is not for me. While I did participate in a few dozon activities I am no longer interested. I do not think SGI is a cult or a bad group, just a sect and like I said not for me. The members I met were hard working, helpful, considerate and contempt but for a practice just not my cup of tea.

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5 years ago  ::  May 02, 2009 - 9:59PM #16
etoro
Posts: 565

Really?  That's strange.  What happened?  We know that its very difficult to believe and difficult to comprehend.  But this is true Buddhism.  This is the real McCoy. You need to continue chanting and be tenacious if you what to open up the benefit in the depth of your life. The so called organization of the Soka Gakkai does not exist outside your own life. The members of Soka are the followers of Nichiren and are the actual Bodhisattvas of the Earth. Just as NIchiren appeared 700 years ago and fullfilled the prohesy of the Lotus Sutra, the people who comprise the Soka Gakkai are also fullfillment of the prophesy of Nichiren himself. Buddha wisdom does not exists outside your own life. You're just being swayed by difficulties. Everything we percieve derives from the lense of our own consciousness.  Nothing exists outside your own life.  It is your life itself which gives meaning both positive and negative to all perceptions. If you have some negative opinion about the Soka Gakkai ths is just coming from your own life. Once you encounter this wonderous practice you must never give it up.

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5 years ago  ::  May 02, 2009 - 10:17PM #17
etoro
Posts: 565

Mark:


Just so you understand how simply this matter actually is, in the 20th chapter Shakyamuni Buddha teaches that Bodhisattva Never Disparaging, who appeared in the Middle Day of the Buddha Awesome Sound King's Law was actually himself in a previoue life. Nichiren says that he himself is practicing in a latter period of Shakyamuni;s Law exactly as Bodhisattva Never Disparaging. So if Bodhisattva Never Despise is Shakyamuni in a previous life and Nichiren is practicing in the same manner as Bodhisattva Never Despise then it stand to reason that Nichiren is simply another incarnation of the True Buddha.  Supporting Nichiren is the same as supporting Shakyamuni just as those monks who developed a relationship with Bodhisattva Never Disparaging attained Buddhahood. There is no slander in revering Nichiren's greatness. Those who embrace the enlightened life of Nichiren are certain to attain Buddhahood.  This is the meaning of the 20th chapter of the Lotus Sutra. 


Its okay.


 


 

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4 years ago  ::  Feb 15, 2010 - 2:45PM #18
morgan
Posts: 2

Just found this thread and I completely understand your frustrations.
I'm in the same boat in many ways.


Listen - SGI does not own the mystic law!
www.sgi.org
and neither does Nichiren Shoshu
www.nst.org
or even Nichiren Shu
nichiren-shu.org - but they do have some great books on Nichiren!


However all of them chant the same important words and read the Lotus Sutra.


Here is where I found myself -
I will have faith - I will have a daily practice - and I will study Nichiren's writings and the bible.


So there you have it - and my mother (NSA/SGI member for 40yrs) is rolling over in her grave. I have bible study at my house once a week, and I am not happy with most of the Christian groups out there too. They all slander each other and none of them seem to understand the cause they are making when they slander. 


I stand alone sometimes. But then so did Jesus and Nichiren at times.


It's still nice to do gongyo and tozo as a group though. You just have to treat it like I treat the CubScouts - do the practice and avoid the politics.  


My Catholic wife can see when my life condition has become low, and she frequently tells me to "go raise your life condition" or "go do gongyo". I am laughing as I type this. She is absolutely right and I listen to her. Chanting works.


Nichiren's teachings and the mystic law is real. Jesus is also real, and the bible holds very valuable information about the way we should lead their daily life. Have your own faith/practice/study and don't let anyone tell you differently.


Hey - check out this really good FREE youtube video on Nichiren: www.youtube.com/watch?v=o3jNpjGNjwA


 


 

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