Soka Gakkai Holds Memorial Services on Anniversary of Nichiren's Passing
Soka Gakkai held memorial services throughout Japan on October 13 to mark the anniversary of Nichiren's passing (October 13, 1282). The services also commemorated the day Nichiren inscribed the Dai-Gohonzon (October 12, 1279), the object of devotion in Nichiren Buddhism. [Dai means great. Go is an honorific prefix, and honzon means object of fundamental respect or devotion.]
Soka Gakkai representatives gathered at the Soka Culture Center in Shinanomachi, Tokyo, to offer prayers. Soka Gakkai President Minoru Harada referenced the Atsuhara persecution, during which Nichiren's followers who lived in the Atsuhara area experienced a series of threats and acts of violence for several years, beginning in 1278. Three of his followers were eventually executed for their religious beliefs. Moved by the steadfast faith of his followers, he inscribed a Gohonzon explicitly dedicated to the happiness and enlightenment of all humankind.
Mr. Harada shared his conviction that the three founding presidents of the Soka Gakkai embody this same determination to advance the cause of world peace even in the face of adversity. He encouraged participants to renew their personal vow to live in accordance with the humanistic ideals of Nichiren and to work towards contributing to the betterment of society.
[Adapted from an article in the October 14, 2010, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan; photo courtesy of Seikyo Shimbun]