There really are a great number of fantastic posts from times past before I joined this mb. So many I'd like to add my thoughts to, but I've chosen only a few:
Tsuki, this rush to exchange Nikken Gohonzon for Nichikan Gohonzon (or whoever) was one of the first threads that started to unravel the cloak of my "faith". Other than styles and border colors, what difference could it possibly have made to have one or the other Gohonzon?? I don't even think the leaders knew what they were doing. All we knew is that Ikeda wanted us to throw out any possible remnants of Nichiren Snowshoe attachments and only be with our SGI symbols and guidances and stuff. It was crazy...the temple where I was married was suddenly a taboo and evil place.
It's all taboo and evil to me now, all the bickering and bullshit and custody issues and claims of fake DaiGs and priestly and lay person nonsense. Thanks really to this forum for a place to sit quietly come to realizations with a bunch of great ex members.
I had always had my doubts about "chanting", the superstitious rituals and the mere "scroll." When they started the movement to exchange the gohonzons, there were quite a few of the more "thinking" members who voiced concerns, objections and had the seeds of doubt planted in their minds. It was one of many self-inflicted mortal wounds that the gakkai did to both themselves and the membership. Seeing how the Nikken gohonzons were initially fawned over for their beauty and power, only to later quickly be recast as the polar opposite, was blatant evidence and inadvertent admission that it was all superstitious manipulation at the core.
Some goverment agency will probably do a serious investigation into SGI and global moneylaundering at some point.
And very helpful to hear that in fact SGI-Ikeda used to call it MASTER and disciple/slave, and then switched in the USA to Mentor. That is just to make it sound like pop-psychology, as SGI-USA has hired US PR agencies to manage their image.
I feel the same about there being an official investigation into sgi-usa at some point. It's only a matter of time before it happens and it is long overdue.
I submit audio recording exhibit "A" as evidence of the "MASTER" usage from earlier days. This [www.youtube.com
] is the general director of nsa/sgi-usa using the term (first use at the ~ 3:35 min. mark). I heard it all the time, from every
top leader during my days in the cult. I know and I clearly remember, because the term never really sat well with me, either.
Just wanted to also mention, Anticult, all of your comments throughout this thread regarding critical thinking are 100% in resonance with my own thoughts and personal experience in getting out of this cult. I got out entirely on my own based solely on the power of critical thinking and skepticism long before I ever even found this mb. It's immensely refreshing and satisfying to read your independent remarks about the same.
In last months kosen rufu video, Mr, Ikeda said something about his mentor Josei Toda knowing 'how amazing he(Ikeda) was'. No one in the viewing audience flinched when Ikeda said this, (or clapped or visibly reacted at all). This stuff just washes over people. I wished I had made an audible laugh or critical comment . That is how conditioned we are to not upset the apple cart. You can't confront an entire group with disapproval. i observed and let it go.
Nothing has changed rattyboy. Here's a recent one [www.youtube.com
]. It all really starts to kick off at ~ 2:40 min. mark. (Incidentally, "mentor"-disciple remarks are also found around the ~ 3:30 min. mark and is followed by the classic stern constipation looks on the md/ymd members' faces.)
I found an old World Tribune with a photograph where young men were dressed in tight matching outfits coming out of a smoking rocket at some big convention. It looked ridiculous. It must have been a mind control test. "If we can get them to do these ridiculous shenanagins we still have them in our power". Were these displays tests of SGI/NSA's control over group mind? "Okay, they did the rocket thing with great enthusiasm, everything is copacetic".
I hate to say it, but at times I feel all my cynicism and disapproval of SGI could turn around after some venting. Maybe they would let me find a comfortable place back in the big ORG along with the now accepted homosexuals, (because they need the numbers and appearance of good will toward all men and women).
There was such an addictive quality to it, like snorting enough coke before going to the discoteque to be socially acceptable, but it wasn't just the disco, you had to be daimoku-ready for that call from a member at any time!
The scary thing is, I could imagine deciding to chant for an hour and then cursing at the devil of the sixth heaven and and pleading to the puffy face of Ikeda to take me as his disciple. Now that I write this...nah. This is definite cult mind control!
You've really got me laughing here, because I think I've seen that same picture (the stupid rocket).
I agree. The chanting has a mind numbing effect and definitely contributes to a more "receptive" state for thought reform. I know that some people get something from it, but it never truly clicked with me. Even when I tried to convince myself that something was happening, it wouldn't last long, because my inherent skepticism was always outside knocking on the door to be let back in. I also found the demands of morning (especially) and evening gonyo to be ridiculous, much too long and entirely unrealistic (unless, of course, you happen to be living in a monastery devoting your life to it). To each their own, but I found the rituals to be oppressive and as I got older, irrational magical superstitious thinking.
Rattyboy, thanks for your recommendation (in an earlier post of yours that I quoted) of "A Ticket To Heaven (1981)
." I found the full movie [www.youtube.com
] for others who may be interested. Quite an eye opener. I saw many parallels to nsa/sgi-x, MANY
. Substitute in nmrk for their chant, youth division activities for their bizarre group behaviors, the shouting of the really stupid slogans, the manipulation by fellow members and even the wild eyed looks on some of the deluded mental case "leaders" . . . . and you've basically got a movie about the nsa/sg cult. I love the fact that the heart of the movie takes place in California, the original breeding ground of particularly credulous culture. An utterly fascinating watch and as per rattyboy, recommended, even essential viewing. The movie gets a bit corny at times, but not any more corny than some of the real life stuff I remember from my days in the practice. For those that watch it, stay with the movie, because the message behind it is accurate, deep and important.
And, finally, one last point directed to tsukimoto:
--Critical thinking is discouraged. Members who do so are seen as arrogant and lacking in faith.
I came across another of your posts (I believe?) about a leader who visited a member and criticized all of the "non-buddhist, non-sgi" books that the member had. Saying something to the effect that "reading doesn't help or change you, chanting does!" and "don't read so much, your time would be better spent chanting!" What a disturbing mindset. It's basically saying, "turn off your critical faculties, let us manipulate you and push you further down into superstitious darkness."
No thanks. As a kid, I tried the kool aid (that's what kids do), but as an adult, I absolutely don't like what it does to you.