November 18 is the anniversary of the establishment of the Soka Gakkai.
Tsunesaburo Makiguchi, first president of the Soka Gakkai, and his disciple Josei Toda (second president) published the first in a series of writings outlining the system of soka, or value-creating pedagogy, on November 18, 1930, and this date marks the founding of the Soka Kyoiku Gakkai–the Society for Value-Creating Education. The word “soka,” which was coined by Toda and Makiguchi, is a combination of Chinese characters meaning “create” and “value.”
Today, the theme of our zadankai was November 18 and along with that me and one of my fellow member got the opportunity of presenting the Peace Proposal 2014.
What is the Peace Proposal?
Every year, SGI President Daisaku Ikeda publishes a peace proposal which explores the interrelation between core Buddhist concepts and the diverse challenges global society faces in the effort to realize peace and human security. In addition, he has also made proposals touching on issues such as education reform, the environment, the United Nations and nuclear abolition.
The theme of this year’s peace proposal was Value Creation for Global Change: Building Resilient and Sustainable Society. For this Sensei has mentioned three aspects on the country level and value creation at an individual level as well. On country level the three points are : Global Education and Youth Empowerment, Strengthening Resilience and Abolition of Nuclear Weapons.
Me and my fellow member had to make a power point presentation and had to present it in front of other members, in a way we got the opportunity to represent Sensei himself. It was our good fortune to do that. We had to go through the entire proposal written by Sensei, 64 pages book, and we not only had to read it but we also had to imbibe it in our life, we had to see it from Sensei’s point.
For the past 4 days all I was doing was sleeping, eating, drinking, walking, talking, peace proposal. I didn’t want to go wrong in anyway, we had to make each and every member relate to the peace proposal, inspire them and make them understand how we, as a lay practitioner can contribute to the society.
In the whole process of reading the peace proposal to making the ppt to the presentation, what I realized was there’s so much actually going on in the world around us, there’s so much that SGI is a part of. SGI contributes in many ways all around the world, apart from spreading the law, which till date in my two years of practice was never aware of.
Also, what hit me was that we are so stuck in our own life, trying to sort out things in our life, and we are not aware of the things that are happening around us, in our society, in our country, between countries, some of us are not interested in the bigger picture. We feel that our problems are bigger than the world problems, we get caught up in our own life and keep running a rat race. Very few stand up to the injustice and try contributing in building a sustainable society. And those who do, we make them our idols, but even these role models were once normal human beings like us. They weren’t born with this thought, but somehow they couldn’t bare whatever wrong was happening around them and they decided to stand against the injustice.
They were also once normal humans like us, if they could do it, then why cant we? Why cant each individual work towards greater hope, peace and solidarity of the society. When the foundation will be strong then obviously the building is going to be very strong.
Sensei has given beautiful examples of Malala Yousafzai, how one girl stood for girl education in her native and was shot for doing so. Then there was a rage that we all saw and heard all around the world. One girl became hope for all the other girls in her native place.
Sensei is trying to convey through this example is that it requires just one person to inspire many others around you, the power of hope is very strong and that’s what we as Nichiren’s followers need to do, inspire everyone around us to bring in a change in the society.
I have decided to know about SGI more in-depth and talk to my leaders and find a way to make my contribution towards society in any way possible. The problems of my life are not as big as the world, and working towards creating a better society will always be more satisfying than working on my own problems, because the law is there to take care of my problems.
The presentation went amazing well and my fellow member and I did manage to touch each and every members heart, along with making them understand Sensei’s message in the peace proposal.
What I concluded with the whole proposal was that Sensei wants us to transform our inner self and do our human revolution and unite together for a peaceful and a sustainable global society. And the time is now, why wait for later, the time is now!
Hope you all had an amazing weekend !