Buddhist Summer Courses Held in Northern Ireland
On June 23, a men's summer course was held in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Men practicing in Northern Ireland were joined by SGI members from the Republic of Ireland and guests from SGI-UK.
The theme of the course was "Courage and Commitment for Success" and, following a series of experiences in which members shared the positive impact their practice of Buddhism had effected in their lives, SGI-UK Study Leader Robert Harrap gave a talk on the mentor and disciple relationship. The talk was based on extracts from Nichiren's letters to his disciple Shijo Kingo. As a result of Nichiren's encouragement, Shijo Kingo was able to find the courage and strength to overcome numerous difficulties.
On June 24, some 30 women members also held their summer course in Belfast, together with 16 guests from SGI-Ireland. The women listened to encouragement and shared personal experiences of changing apathy to dynamism, of standing up for justice and opening up their lives, in a "World Cafe." They also stated their determination to "transform the age through the treasures of our hearts."
On the same day, Northern Ireland youth members attended a lecture and Q&A session given by Robert Harrap on Nichiren's writing "The Strategy of the Lotus Sutra" in which he emphasized that the strategy of the Lotus Sutra lies in our absolute conviction in ourselves and the transformative power of Buddhism.
[Adapted from articles in July 4 issue of SGI-UK Online News Bulletin; photos courtesy of SGI-UK]