Some of my random thoughts to many of the posts on this thread:
I remember at one YWD retreat, some women from "ever-victorious Kansai" were there. One was telling about how she hadn't been chanting much, so she had this low life condition (heh heh heh), and she was working at the reception desk at the kaikan, when Ikeda walked in. He told her she looked like a filthy mat! So she went home and chanted and chanted, and when he came back in again, he praised her for looking like a "beautiful carpet"! Most of the (American) young women found that *quite* offensive.
I've heard different variations of this same story in the cult org.. It's kind of like the gakkai cult equivalent to urban myth. The people telling it were always somehow vaguely connected to the event, supposedly witnessing it from the sidelines, etc.. The theme was always how the YWD looked awful, Ikeda said something to put her down, so she transformed her life to be like the radiant sun for sensei, which he later praised her for.
The YMD version of the "Kansai Spirit" was that we should be ready to wear adult diapers and perform endlessly for Cousin Rufus, even performing in the rain and mud, without having to take bathroom breaks. Such a spirit, to be willing to crap your pants for sensei, is what we were told to aspire to; it would transform our lives and bring great fortune. (I kid you not. I have also written about this in the main thread.)
And his poetry is brain-damaging! I used to dread the New Years meetings, because they'd read another *AWFUL*, tedious, puerile, stupid poem by Master of the Obvious!
His ignorant platitudinous ramblings always gave me a headache (the same goes for some of his so-called "dialogues", too.)
Those poems did seem pointless as with all his other writings. I'm glad to know I was not the only thinking it all seemed like a bunch of hokey gibberish that said absolutely nothing. And people fawned over, "Oh how wonderful a painter, photographer, philosopher" or whatever else has been wrongly attributed to him. "He's so wise!" My butt.
His poems say absolutely nothing and are incredibly lame. Every time I read them or some cult member stood up to recite them, I wanted to bang my head on the desk or nearest wall.
His photos (does he really even take all of them?) are just as banal and hackneyed as his poems (they often are meant to go together). In the motherland, they hold public viewings of his "photography", where the only people who come out to see it are cult members (who pretty much have to, because their districts take head counts.) Soka-han stand guard over the huge ornately golden framed Dear Leader produced photos. The display frames alone must be worth a small fortune and is probably what they are really
Daisaku Ikeda-the master of the'point-and-click' school of photography. And the poetry is on a par with that found in The Big Issue. (A British magazine for homelessness feauturing bad poetry written by the homeless among other things).The DVD's are pretty corny too. Three Sensei's Streamings were enough for me. Everyone else seemed fascinated-one scene of him playing drums badly had them all in stitches. That was when the penny started to drop:" Am I in a cult?" The feeling persisted till I left.
I saw the same kind of fawning over the USA general director (Williams-Sadanga). He would, on rare occasions, break out his saxophone and play "Danny Boy", or try
to play it. It was horrible, but the culties ate it up every time, with huge applause. I remember one public cult outreach event where he got onstage and played it for everyone. All the gakkai members were hysterically enthusiastic, while all the regular non-members watching all around us were arching their eyebrows, mouths falling open and looking at each another shrugging their shoulders, not understanding what the hell everyone was going on about. It was hilarious.
The brainwashing does that to the membership.
Did you guys have your share of crazies as well? The only ones I remember talking about him in that way I had to wonder about, because of the idea, the wording and the way it seemed out of nowhere and from complete strangers. Add to that the ones for whom I finally understand the saying "the light is on but no one is at home." I've only seen maybe a couple of videos since I started and from what I recall I thought how different the Japanese were to our way of doing things. You'd understand what I mean with the military like environment. I just chalked it up to Japanese culture. When talking to others around the world I got so many different experiences but it's the same abuse and the money pattern that repeats itself over and over. They sure try to make him look good. We got the odd SGI magazine that had all the pictures of him with leaders like Mandela and Gorbachev, thinking oh wow that's so impressive! One(ugh) "benefit" that I got would be the attitude I must question absolutely everything if I'm to avoid this in the future.
All of the senior salaried leaders, in addition to being pompous ignoramuses, are hardcore Ikeda-bots. No matter how sane they may appear in everyday life, if you place one in front of The Dear Leader, you will see them instantly transform into a giddy crazy teenager meeting their idol. I don't care who it is, the all have the potential to turn into a nutso hardcore gakkai cult org. kamikaze zombie, given the right circumstances.
Crazy members where everywhere, but I do recall some really far out YMD (usually Japanese or Japanese-American) who acted like they were in love with The Dear Leader. One guy, in particular, came up to a group of us YMD completely out of the blue, clutching with both hands, Ikeda's "Human Revolution" closely to his chest, he looked like he had just been crying, and said something to the effect that "we are *so* fortunate to be able to study "The Human Revolution." He walked away and disappeared just as quickly as he appeared. It was bizarre and we all were silent for a few seconds. When he got out of earshot, we all bursted out laughing (I always naturally gravitated to the least brainwashed group of fellow YMD culties, to spend my time with).
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/02/2013 06:57AM by Hitch.