GENERATION HOPE 17th March, 2018 THE PASSENGER SHED, BRISTOL

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THE CHALLENGE
What do you see when you look at the world around you?
Do you see suffering?
Are you struggling?
Do you see or feel hope?
What state is our world in?
Are you treasured or respected where you are?

OUR RESPONSE
Based on lives of action and purpose, there is every reason to believe that the world can change for the better and that it is possible to become happy, even in the midst of struggle and pain.

SGI Buddhism aims to give people not only the ability to transform their lives, but the belief that this is even possible; to help people see that the world doesn’t have to be as it is.

On March 17th 2018 we are holding a meeting of 6000 young people and young adults across three venues in the UK: Bristol, London and Manchester. Why are we doing this?

We want to create an opportunity so likeminded young people can come together in a shared commitment for peace, whatever their background, race or religion
We want to share with society the vision, purpose and experiences of our Buddhist practice
We want to inspire hope in the hearts of every single young person in the UK
THE VISION
Through this meeting we are expressing the global vision of the SGI, which is captured by this short poem by SGI founder, Daisaku Ikeda entitled “This is Your Age”:

This is your age
The future rests in your hands
I hope you will make the twenty-first century truly wonderful
Please make it a century in which the life of each individual is cherished and respected to the utmost.
A century without discrimination, without bullying, war or murder.
A century in which no child cries with hunger, in which no mothers or children take their own lives in despair.
A century without environmental destruction.
A century free from academic elitism, greed and materialism.
A century in which human rights are upheld as the most precious treasure.

A century of true democracy, in which the people hold corrupt political leaders to account. A century in which the people exercise sound judgement and pay no heed to the lies of the mass media.
I hope you will make it a century in which each of your precious dreams come true and your unique individuality blossoms to the fullest.
To realise these goals, it is vital that you achieve victory, that each of you grow into people of philosophy and compassion, into people who possess both real ability and the sincerity to understand the hearts of others.
Your victory will be the victory of the twenty-first century.
You are our only hope.

ABOUT US
SGI-UK is a socially engaged Buddhist movement for peace. It is one of the many organisations in 192 countries and territories throughout the world which together make up SGI (Soka Gakkai International). Soka means the ‘creation of value’ and Gakkai means ‘society’. SGI is a movement based on Nichiren Buddhism. It is a broad humanistic movement for the benefit of humanity, engaging with other institutions, associations, groups and individuals who wish actively to create a better world.

SGI United Nations liaison offices located in New York, Geneva and Vienna actively support UN processes. They promote activities to raise public awareness of global concerns and the search for better solutions, working together with other NGOs. SGI also works in partnership with likeminded organisations that hold a shared commitment to humanistic social action, including recent Nobel Prize winning anti-nuclear abolition campaign ICAN.

In 1961 Soka Gakkai President Daisaku Ikeda, visiting Europe for the first time, laid the foundations of the UK movement for peace, culture and education, encouraging the handful of people who were practising here at that time. SGI-UK has grown steadily, and there are now over 650 local groups throughout the UK.

Local groups hold discussion meetings each month to which everyone is invited. If you want to find out about the nearest group to you please contact us through this site or go to http://www.SGI-UK.org

Soka Gakkai International is a worldwide society for the creation of value founded upon the Buddhism of Nichiren Daishonin.
SGI-UK is a Registered Charity No. 1104491 Company Limited by Guarantee No. 5114516. Registered in England & Wales.
Copyright © 2018 Generation Hope. All Rights Reserved. Site Design by Tre

New Year Message 2018

SGI President Ikeda’s New Year’s Message for 2018 

Raise the Banner of Brilliant Achievement and

Open the Way to a Peaceful Future!

My best wishes to you on the start of 2018—the Year of Brilliant Achievement in the New Era of Worldwide Kosen-rufu.

I am praying sincerely for the health and safety of our members everywhere as well as their families and friends, with the wish that they may lead lives of eternity, joy, true self, and purity. I am also praying for the peace and prosperity of the lands in which they live.

What is the banner of brilliant achievement that we, the global citizens of Soka, are now raising?

First, it is the steadfast banner of conviction.

Nichiren Daishonin writes: “How fortunate, how joyous, to think that with this unworthy body I have received in my heart the seeds of Buddhahood!” (WND-1, 578).

Having embraced faith in the Mystic Law, we have already firmly planted the seeds of Buddhahood in our lives. We nurture those seeds by chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo ourselves and teaching others to do the same. When we do so with unflagging resolve, “day by day and month after month” (WND-1, 997), we can bring unending flowers of joy to blossom and infinite good fortune to fruition—in our lives, our families, and our communities. This can be seen in the wonderful actual proof of the benefit of Buddhist practice that our members all around the world are demonstrating.

Even the greatest material wealth, fame, and power are fleeting and transient. No matter what heights of worldly success and fortune one may gain, they are all nothing more than “mere prosperity in a dream” (WND-1, 63) in the face of the fundamental sufferings of birth, aging, sickness, and death. However, nothing can destroy the “treasures of the heart” (WND-1, 851) that we accumulate in the innermost depths of our lives as we challenge adversity with true faith in the Mystic Law and change poison into medicine. Such treasures will never fade nor disappear.

Precisely because we live in an age where many lack convictions and a sound guiding philosophy, we who hold the steadfast banner of conviction and philosophy—of faith in Nichiren Buddhism—must make our lives shine brightly with life’s ultimate and eternal brilliant achievement—that is, attaining Buddhahood in this lifetime.

 

Second, our banner of brilliant achievement is the invincible banner of peace.

Last year, six decades after my mentor, second Soka Gakkai president Josei Toda, made his historic Declaration Calling for the Abolition of Nuclear Weapons, the United Nations adopted the landmark Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

As you may know, the SGI was actively involved in the process leading to the treaty’s adoption, collaborating with NGOs such as the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) and national governments, and helping create a grassroots people’s movement in support of the treaty. This example of solidarity in civil society and the powerful voice of the people acting as a force to galvanize the international community is a major positive step for the future.

In November last year, an SGI delegation participated in a conference held at the Vatican in Rome on the topic “Perspectives for a World Free from Nuclear Weapons and for Integral Disarmament,” along with numerous leading world thinkers, including Argentine human rights activist Adolfo Pérez Esquivel.

Dr. Pérez Esquivel and I have discussed such topics as abolishing nuclear weapons, putting an end to the violence of war and terrorism, and finding solutions to environmental degradation, divisions caused by discrimination and the wealth gap, and various other challenges the world faces. Dr. Pérez Esquivel holds boundless hopes for the contributions to peace being made by our SGI youth.

In our dialogue, he remarked that spirituality is engendered by transcending the self, by learning to think of others. To achieve peace, he said, we need a spirituality that illuminates our self, an inner light, without which we cannot illuminate others.[1]

In our daily activities for kosen-rufu, we sincerely listen to the problems and worries of individuals around us and engage them in frank and open dialogue. This is ultimately a challenge to believe in and activate the supremely noble Buddha nature that exists within our lives and those of others. Through such steady, persevering efforts in dialogue day after day, we can illuminate both ourselves and others with the light of human revolution.

In his treatise “On Establishing the Correct Teaching for the Peace of the Land,” Nichiren Daishonin writes:

You must quickly reform the tenets that you hold in your heart and embrace the one true vehicle, the single good doctrine [of the Lotus Sutra]. If you do so, then the threefold world will become the Buddha land, and how could a Buddha land ever decline? The regions in the ten directions will all become treasure realms, and how could a treasure realm ever suffer harm? (WND-1, 25)

Under the invincible banner of peace, of the ideal of “establishing the correct teaching for the peace of the land,” let us continue our work to forge and spread a spiritual solidarity among people around the world, transcending all differences.

Finally, our banner of brilliant achievement is an eternal banner of youth.

This year on March 16, we will celebrate the 60th anniversary of that historic ceremony of mentor and disciple, when President Toda passed the baton of kosen-rufu to his successors in the youth division.

Today, all around the world, inspiring young Bodhisattvas of the Earth are standing up dynamically to take action for kosen-rufu. They are sending forth waves of Buddhist dialogue and creating a powerful, rising tide of humanism.

This year, let us put even greater energy into fostering the youth and expanding their ranks. And let us limitlessly open the way for the future of worldwide kosen-rufu, working together in solid unity and joyous harmony.

I am praying earnestly that all of you, my dear fellow members of the Soka family, each in the sphere of your own vow and mission, will create a record of brilliant achievement in leading lives of complete fulfillment and advancing our movement for kosen-rufu.

New Year’s Day, 2018

Daisaku Ikeda

President, Soka Gakkai International

[1] Cf. Translated from Spanish. Adolfo Pérez Esquivel and Daisaku Ikeda, La fuerza de la esperanza: Reflexiones sobre la paz y los derechos humanos en el tercer milenio (The Power of Hope: Reflections on Peace and Human Rights in the Third Millennium), (Buenos Aires: Emecé, 2011), p. 195.

JUNE : Encouraging Dialogues

 

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As an on-going part of our practice this month we are encouraged to use our Buddha wisdom, courage and compassion to expand our lives and talk with people about this amazing practice and philosophy that is Nichiren Buddhism and the SGI…

It also coincides with BAM… which is the annual international Buddhist Action Month campaign…

PLASE have a great month and create wonderful experiences and value….

The Gohonzon

Park small“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, 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. This is what the sutra means when it states that one can “gain entrance through faith alone.” 

Nichiren Daishonin WND Vol. 1 Page 832

12th October 1279 Nichiren inscribes the Dai Gohonzon for the happiness of all people

 

The Daimoku of the Lotus Sutra

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“With regard to the Mystic Law, benefit means wiping out evil and bringing about good (cf. OTT, 148)[1].   The daimoku of the Lotus Sutra—Nam-myoho-renge-kyo— eradicates the fundamental evil inherent in life and gives rise to fundamental good.

That’s why, by chanting daimoku, we can eliminate all forms of evil karma in an instant and manifest immeasurable good fortune and benefit.

By chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo a single time, we ordinary, unenlightened beings—plagued by problems, doubts, and suffering—can positively transform our circumstances in accord with the principle of “changing poison into medicine”[2]   and attain a state of life filled with hope, courage, and peace of mind. To ordinary people, this is truly an astonishing and unfathomable teaching. And because it is the wondrous and mysterious law to which the Buddha became enlightened, it is called the Mystic Law.”

[1] The Daishonin writes: “The element ku in the word kudoku [benefits] . . . refers to the merit achieved by wiping out evil, while the element toku or doku refers to the virtue one acquires by bringing about good” (OTT, 148).

Daisaku Ikeda: Letcture on an extract from the Gosho ‘The Daimoku of the Lotus Sutra’

[2] The principle that earthly desires and suffering can be transformed into benefit and enlightenment by virtue of the power of the Law. This phrase is found in a passage from Nagarjuna’s Treatise on the Great Perfection of Wisdom, which mentions “a great physician who

can change poison into medicine.” This phrase is often cited to show that any problem or suffering can be transformed eventually into the greatest happiness and fulfillment in life.

 

Encouragement

Poppies

“Encouragement ignites a flame of hope in people’s hearts. It awakens courage and draws forth the strength to break through limitations.

Encouragement is a wellspring of revitalization. It is the door to transformation and the great path to victory. It is the light of hope, the voice of courage, and the way to build the future.”

“The path to achieving kosen-rufu is long—continuing far into the distant future. The key to progressing on this path will always be one-on-one encouragement.

Based on the Buddhist spirit of encouragement, we of the SGI have produced an unending stream of people who are self-reliant, awakened to their mission, and strive to realize happiness for themselves and others—people who are working to create value and contribute to world peace.”

Daisaku Ikeda’s lecture on the Gosho ‘The Two Kinds of Faith’