Monthly Leaders Meeting in Japan Commemorates Soka Gakkai Founding Day
On October 28, 2008, Soka Gakkai held its monthly leaders meeting at the Soka International Friendship Hall in Sendagaya, Tokyo, and commemorated November 18, 1930, Soka Gakkai's founding day. SGI President Daisaku Ikeda attended, together with national Soka Gakkai representatives and SGI members from nine countries around the world.
Soka Gakkai President Minoru Harada, referring to the present worldwide economic turmoil, asked everyone to support society by engaging in genuine dialogue brimming with conviction that inspires people with hope and reassurance. He stated that having a youthful spirit means to uphold justice and speak out against corruption. Young Men's Leader Nobuhisa Tanano called on the young people to stand up with just such a spirit. Young women's leader Yumiko Kumazawa introduced an episode in which a young woman shook off her usual timidity and engaged her father and a roomful of his friends in conversation to further their understanding of the Soka Gakkai's socially-engaged activities. Women's Leader Asami Mitsui introduced Soka Gakkai women who have been recognized for their humanitarian contributions and called on women to continue building bonds of trust in their local communities and society at large.
The meeting featured a performance by the Soka Gakkai Kansai 21st Century Symphony Orchestra and the Kansai Men's Chorus. The Kansai 21st Century Symphony Orchestra was established on January 16, 1995, the day before the devastating Great Hanshin Earthquake, with 25 professional and semi-professional musicians. Since then, the current orchestra, consisting of 67 professional and semi-professional musicians, has collaborated with some 350 musicians in Japan as well as artists from 13 countries for goodwill concerts that began with a desire to encourage and support quake victims and the revival of the quake-hit areas. In 2007, the orchestra gave a concert that celebrated the 35th anniversary of the normalization of Sino-Japanese diplomatic relations.
In his speech, Mr. Ikeda reminded the audience that the purpose of our faith in and practice of Nichiren Buddhism is to achieve personal happiness while at the same time dedicating ourselves to the well-being of our families and friends and to all of humanity.
[Adapted from an article in the October 29, 2008 issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]