I was a member during the split and all those who joined way after do not have the knowledge to judge us here as 'disgruntled' members. SGI then accused the temple of worshipping a person and not the law – exactly what SGI is doing now with Ikeda. SGI stole my youth I have every right to be pi..ed off by this ridiculous cult.
After the old man dies? SGI will loose more members at least in the West. It will become even more a cult centred around the three mentors and it will become even more evident that it is not Buddhism. And even in various cycles of those who just watch SGI, even dictionaries it will no longer be counted as a Buddhist group and join the long list of sometimes weird 'New Religious Movements'.
As somebody pointed out Ikeda took SGI as his personal possession after the split so what will happen when he dies? What happens to lost property? Most likely it will be auctioned off hence be up for grabs. Those who have that strange notion to create an American or European Buddhism will then learn that what they did was not Buddhism anyway and I hope some serious questions will be raised from the outside. Those questions will be raised and the staunch Ikedaists will maybe even say that they were unaware, that they did not know. The thing is though that us, the disgruntled ones were there too, we witnessed it and will not remain silent.
Heh! Sitting here remembering "Pac-Man Shakubuku" in Chicago and thinking about your comment Rothaus. Yeah, just get the numbers, act really happy and keep pushing the daimoku and surely any obstacle can be overcome. Like the guy with the baseball bat saying "Buddhist! Get the h**l off'n my property ya heathen!" Fond memories and it was all for good old Sensei who I'm certain never shed a drop of persperation for my sake.
The point is - the pre-split members weren't doing it for Ikea but for a greater cause (yeah, I know, cousin rufus, human revolution, etc.) but at this point in time I'm pretty certain that battle has long been lost. Burning up all the youthful energy building human pyramids and carrying flags here an there didn't change the world one iota. Proof of that is the long-standing problem with SGI coming clean on where the money goes. If cousin rufus was in the wings you'd have that information easily accessible. Instead the truth seems to be that a lot of people (yours truly included) were just duped.
In the US, is there any chance that a groundswell of buddhism will ever arise that will so totally change the landscape that the world will become a nirvana? Not likely. The chance existed in the 70's and 80's and it was lost. Sexy eastern religions are yesterday's news, and to my mind, because of the many mass communications capabilitys that exist (twitter and others) the days of large monolithic organizations are gone.
That is where my annoyance springs from, a huge missed opportunity and the aftermath being just a cynical money extraction machine to bleed those who are willing to believe the people they are following are the "real deal".
Sigh! Gotta work on this Esho Funi problem I have :-)