also, there are many other groups who claim what they do is some kind of Buddhism.
Why? It seems that in the west, Buddhism still has a good reputation, and now is trendy, like Yoga. So they call whatever they are doing Buddhism, and it gives them a fig-leaf to hide behind.
To me, when most Westerners refer to Buddhism, they're referring to Tibetan Buddism. The Dalai Lama is the best-known Buddhist in the Western world; Daisaku Ikeda is comparatively a footnote. Whenever I read about Western descriptions of what Buddhism is, it is never what the SGI expounds.
So I'd qualify that Tibetan Buddhism is trendy right now.
Just to qualify that, its as though they are just using the "word" Buddhism, without any understanding of it at all. Certainly NOT like Tibetan, in the area I am talking about.
My first contact with the current SGI a while back, was through a friend of a friend. This was a girl who was a partier, drinking every night, smoking, XTC pill-popping, sleeping around constantly, very vain, self-obsessed to a ridiculous level, etc..She was a mess, basically.
anyway, one night about 1am, she's drunk, and starts talking how she's a "Buddhist". Of course, I thought it was a joke, like someone eating a burger saying they are Vegan.
But it turns out she appears to be serious, and I start asking her about her "Buddhism", and it simply made no sense. I know a bit about classical buddhism, and I ask her about various things, like "desire" etc, and she sits there with a completely blank look on her face. She never heard of ANY of it.
Later she gives me a booklet, and that is when I started to look into this SGI thing. (the booklets were VERY deceptive, nothing about Ikea/Ikeda at all...very shallow and deceptive).
This person literally knew NOTHING about classical Buddhism whatsoever. All she knew was the few booklets from SGI she read. That's it.
So there is a bottom rung on the SGI ladder, where lots of shallow westerners get lured into it, from a friend, on a promise that "chanting" is literally going to make them rich, famous, happy, get a new car by chanting-magic, get a new job by magic, lose weight by magic, stop being depressed, anxious, etc.
Basically chanting, as a superficial wish-fulfillment scheme like was sold in The Secret.
All they literally think is...Chant for what you want. So they chant for more money, cars, house, sex, fame, bigger boobs, etc. Not kidding.
To them, Desire does not create suffering, Greed Is Good. That should be the slogan of SGI...Greed Is Good.
These folks literally have ZERO understanding of "Buddhism", and are just lured in by the promise of "get rich quick by chanting".
SGI targets these folks, and happily takes their dues. SGI wants them to be completely ignorant. Ignorant is good for SGI, that makes good SGI followers. The more thoughtless and greedy the shallow westerners, the better it is for SGI.
I've met a number of SGI folks like this, and they all have the exact same self-centered, shallow, vain, self-obsessed view of "chanting" and "Buddhism".
Its really reached the level of comedy, where people are doing literally the opposite to Buddhism.
Why call it Buddhism? It should be called Trumpism, or Consumerism, or just MeMeMe-ism.
and some of these people have never even HEARD of the 4 Noble truths, or anything like that.
It literally is like The Secret, but with Chanting, for them.
And they are all obsessed with enrolling their friends, as taught by their leaders. They mindlessly try to enrol everyone they know.
So there is some subset of SGI for vain, shallow, westerners who are completely ignorant, and SGI likes them that way. They pay their dues, they don't ask questions, and they bring in other shallow, greedy, thoughtless westerners, who also want to "get-rich-quick" by Chanting.
Remember, the Buddha was very clear on this...
Greed is Good.
Greed is God.
That is why my Buddha statue is so fat and happy.
hmm, looking closer at my chubby Buddha statue, he does actually have rather large breasts...so maybe chanting does increase one's bust size?
but seriously, there is the low-end of the SGI food-chain which is really ridiculous. But truly, Ikeda would love these people, they are not going to hassle his Org about anything, they just want their Stuff by chanting magick.
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/04/2009 02:27PM by The Anticult.