Monday, November 21, 2005


The Soka Gakkai’s goal is kosen-rufu – realizing human happiness and world peace by widely spreading the philosophy and ideals of Nichiren Daishonin’s Buddhism.
-- Daisaku Ikeda

This last Friday marked the 75th Anniversary of the Sokka Gakkai’s establishment (the Sokka Gakkai [SG] is the Soka Gakkai International’s [SGI] predecessor).

Take another look at that quote. It defines one of the most important concepts in this Buddhism.

Kosen-rufu is usually described as “world peace,” but there’s more to it than that. Because this Buddhism respects cultural differences, there’s a certain amount of give involved. Neither yielding nor rigid, it is simply respect.

You, for example, may not be Puerto Rican, you may not be mulatto, your hair may not be curly in nature nor presently in cornrows. You’re probably not an administrative assistant, you may not drive the energizer bunny of beaters, nor prefer wearing Chuck Taylors. Mayhaps, you don’t need glasses, your pants don’t have frayed edges, and odds are 50-50 that you don’t like basketball.

You could be the exact opposite of me in all ways and I still respect you based on what I know.

I just believe that you are a Buddha like me. Maybe your behavior tells me that you don’t know that, and based on your actions I might believe you’re kosher. Whatever. Baseline, you’re a Buddha.

It’s about as close to pacifism as you can get, without getting the heart patch for your sleeve.

Because, it’s not about world domination, or making a Stepford world. You’ll note that the definition says absolutely nothing about “making everyone believe.” No, it says “widely spreading the philosophy and ideals of” this Buddhism.

Ideally, I would do this with conviction, because who listens to pantywaists? But, does that mean I gotta shove it down your throat? No, no it doesn’t. This, however, doesn’t mean you get to walk all over me, either. Do we understand each other? Now think of this as an approach to life, the universe, and the people around you. If we agree that this is pretty cool, great. If not, don’t fuck with me, mine or any around us. Okay, let’s get a beer.

Would you like to know more?


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