SGI Canada Newsletter, No. 30 - July 5, 2021
SGI Canada Newsletter
Issue no. 30
July 5, 2021
Welcome to the 30th issue of the SGI Canada Newsletter, a bi-weekly summary of news, upcoming events and encouragement. If you are not subscribing to the SGI Canada Newsletter, you may do so by clicking on the button below. Subscriptions are free of charge and the SGI Canada Newsletter will be emailed directly to you.
Leaders Commemorate 40th Anniversary of SGI President Ikeda’s Second Visit to Canada
More than 1,000 leaders from across Canada participated in an online First Nationwide All Leaders Meeting on Saturday, June 5, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of SGI President Ikeda’s second visit to Canada in June 1981.
In a message from President Ikeda, he praised everyone’s efforts, “to encourage and support one another with the resolve to ‘leave no one behind,’ continuing your advance in the face of the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic. The splendid growth and development of your successors, the youth division members, is also truly promising.”
He went on to say, “Each of you is a noble and precious individual. The sincerity of your efforts for kosen-rufu as you freely reveal your unique capacities in accord with the principle of ‘cherry, plum, peach, and damson blossoms’ (cf. OTT, 200) is most certainly known to Nichiren Daishonin, the Buddha of the Latter Day of the Law.”
Referring to one of Nichiren Daishonin’s disciples who was living in a time of upheaval and great tumult, President Ikeda quoted the Daishonin’s encouragement to him:
Suffer what there is to suffer, enjoy what there is to enjoy. Regard both suffering and joy as facts of life, and continue chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, no matter what happens. How could this be anything other than the boundless joy of the Law? Strengthen your power of faith more than ever” (WND-1, 681).
President Ikeda stated:
The Mystic Law has the great beneficial power to transform any suffering into happiness. The Mystic Law is a light of hope that makes it possible for our lives and the lives of others to resound with the joy of living. The Mystic Law is the principle of respect for the dignity of life, allowing us to create and open up a future of peace from where we are right now, emerging from our own lives. By living our lives based on the Mystic Law and dedicated to Soka, we will never be unhappy.
In the “Bells of Dawn” chapter of The New Human Revolution, Volume 30, in which President Ikeda wrote about his visit to Canada in 1981, he described the great mission of the members of Canada: “Implanting in people’s hearts this principle of respect for the dignity of life—this seed of peace, the Mystic Law—is the practice of kosen-rufu and the foundation for achieving world peace.” (NEW CENTURY, October 2020, pp. 5-16) https://www.sokaglobal.org/resources/study-materials/buddhist-study/the-newhuman-revolution/vol-30-chapter-4-61-70.html
The message concluded with the following statement:
Toward the 100th anniversary of the Soka Gakkai, I sincerely hope you will continue to powerfully chant the lion’s roar of daimoku, no matter what happens, and that you will widely spread the Mystic Law with courageous and sincere dialogue, thus adorning your lives with unsurpassed hope and victory. In doing so, let’s create a rainbow of harmonious coexistence and happiness, extending to the areas where we live, and to our districts, of which we are so proud. My wife and I will continue praying even more earnestly for your health, longevity, good fortune, and harmonious families. Please take care and stay well!
SGI Canada Statement on Kamloops, Marieval and St. Eugene’s Residential Schools
The recent discoveries of hundreds of unmarked graves at former residential schools in Saskatchewan and British Columbia have awoken people across the country to the tragic story of Canada’s residential schools.
SGI Canada offers its deepest condolences to all Indigenous nations in Canada, and in particular to those communities where unmarked graves have been found: the Tk’emlúps te Secwe̓pemc community, Cowessess First Nation and Lower Kootenay Band. We pray for the eternal happiness of all those who suffered under the residential school system.
As Nichiren Buddhists, we have a profound connection to the place in which we live. President Ikeda says:
The areas where you are working for kosen-rufu are places you have chosen as a result of deep karmic connections from the infinite past. They are the stages for carrying out your mission based on your vow.
Therefore, I hope you will make each scene and act in your life part of an unfolding drama of victory, imparting hope and courage to those who are suffering, and transforming karma into mission. (New Century, June 2021, p.4)
In the spirit of “establishing the correct teaching for the peace of the land”, we will continue to spread Nichiren Daishonin’s message of respect for all living beings, and we will continue to work for the happiness of all Canadians.
Report on Youth and Young Phoenix General Meetings
From SGI Canada’s national Youth leaders:
We’re overjoyed to report that a total of 581 youth, student division and Young Phoenix Group members gathered in June 2021 to commemorate the 1981 visit of President Ikeda. In total, 20 meetings - representing 23 areas - were held across Canada. Each gathering was truly inspiring, and it was especially moving to witness the immense sincerity and seeking spirit of the youth and Young Phoenix members! The future of the Canadian kosen-rufu movement is bright, as each young person is a capable person of Soka!
A big part of each meeting was the showing of a new SGI Canada video rendition of the song "Eternal Journey with Sensei!" / « Voyage éternel avec Sensei ! » involving members from all divisions across the entire country. 70 video submissions were received from all five SGI Canada regions. Performers, translators, video editors and everyone else involved had to overcome obstacles from the very beginning right through to the final edit, but the video came together through the immense sincerity and strong determination of the members to respond to their mentor.
“Eternal Journey with Sensei” is the song of our vow as disciples of President Ikeda, united in the spirit of many in body, one in mind. Through our joyful musical performance, we hope to encourage all the youth division and Young Phoenix Group members of Canada to emerge from the earth and “soar to victory!”
At each meeting, a unique presentation was shared about President Ikeda’s 1981 visit, in which everyone learned of the bond of mentor and disciple between our pioneer leader Mrs. Izumi and President Ikeda. Throughout the campaign leading up to the meetings, the youth members studied President Ikeda’s guidance from the “Bells of Dawn” chapter of The New Human Revolution:
Zero multiplied by any number, no matter how large, is zero. But the number one can grow limitlessly when multiplied….Everything starts with one person. That one person teaches others about the Mystic Law, the ultimate teaching for happiness; fosters people of courageous faith who can surpass them; and sets in motion a growing network of capable individuals. This is the principle of ‘emerging from the earth’ (WND-1, 385), which describes the process by which the Bodhisattvas of the Earth make their appearance.
We received a deeply moving message from President Ikeda, in which he writes,
All of you have embraced and are learning the unparalleled Buddhist philosophy of absolute respect for the dignity of life at a young age. Your mission and good fortune are boundless and immeasurable. You are all successors of the Soka Gakkai who will shoulder the twenty-first century. You are shining suns of youthful victory who will light the way forward in the future.
The more hardships and sufferings you experience, the more you can understand the struggles of others, the more you can develop your inner strength and capability, and the more you can embrace those around you with warmth and compassion.
Inspired by President Ikeda’s example, the youth and future division are determined to advance kosen-rufu in Canada like never before, as the torchbearers of justice!
We hope you found this newsletter beneficial. Please email your questions or comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. The next SGI Canada Newsletter will appear on July 16, 2021. See you then!