Re: Soka Gakkai International -- SGI
Date: August 19, 2013 09:26PM
Along with all of that, corboy, we learn that it's ok to be dishonest - especially to ourselves. Ignore it and it ceases to exist. Don't talk about it, and it doesn't exist as an issue. The evil isn't that we lie to others (although that's not a good thing), we haven't learned to be honest with ourselves and can go into a panic when we can't escape from an essential truth. Confusion. Denial. Excuse-making (enabling). Covering up. Looking the other way. The coping mechanisms are as destructive as the dis-ease. Somehow, maybe in an effort to convince ourselves that we have some level of control over a situation, we convince ourselves that somehow, we are responsible for what's going on . . . if we assume a level of blame, then it becomes "our issue," which gives us the illusion that all we have to do is to take the right actions or say the right words, and everything will right itself somehow.
I wrote in an earlier post that I had never met an sgi member who came to the practice as a happy, functional person. I think we're all broken, to a lesser or greater degree, and we were convinced by other equally effed-up members that this practice was the way to become whole. Honestly, I think it did help me to some extent - not the organization itself, but through the practice. Chanting helped me find a quiet place in my mind to figure some things out. I came to a peaceful place with my mother, who lived her life in fear that the world would find out that she wasn't the person she said she was (her relationship with everyone was based on a complex web of lies about her background) - once I understood that she was driven by that fear, I could have some compassion towards her and her extreme remoteness. I never told her that I'd met members of her family (that she'd broken contact with once she left Wales), and how they had completely denied her existence because she'd married a catholic; this was her truth, and I didn't think it necessary to confront her with it. My father (a dry drunk, with an absolute addict's personality) is another story . . . whether I emotionally reconcile with him or not is still kind of an open question that I'm fine with not having answers to for now. They're both gone now, so I need to come to that resolution on my own. But I've gotten to this point by practicing sgi-flavored Buddhism, which was easy and uber-accessible. Now that I see how screwed up they are, it's time to move on.
I went to an Al-Anon meeting years ago (I went into adulthood as a substance-abuser magnet), and one of the women there made a comment that has stuck with me. She said that she knows in her heart that when she was born, her parents didn't look at her and say "hot-damn, here's a kid we can eff up." No matter how screwed-up and misguided most parents are, they want their children to have better lives than they did, and the lengths to which they'll go are extraordinary. There are some shockingly horrible people out there who should've had their reproductive organs removed before puberty but, like Ann Frank, I prefer thinking that most people are essentially good,
Like our screwy families, we do the best we can, and we make the best decisions possible based on the information (and level of judgment) that we have at the moment.