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7 years ago
doubtful
@corboy who wrote: SGI members are afraid. SGI members have been indoctrinated with a litany of fears: fear of visiting temples or investigating other forms of Buddhism, fear of not chanting enough or skipping gongyo, fear of contradicting the SGI, fear of listening to or entertaining criticism of the SGI, fear of chanting to the “wrong” Gohonzon, fear of leaving the SGI. SGI members fear that th
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
7 years ago
doubtful
@Hitch OMG. I am so glad to see this forum back in action. I was so glad to read what you wrote since I was thinking precisely the same thing this morning. I am so glad to see this forum back and running since it was really instrumental in helping me break away from SGI after 20 years of practice. Sometimes I really regret most of the experience; others times I regret some of it. Most of the peo
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
8 years ago
doubtful
Hey everyone, I haven't posted in a really long time but I am glad to see this message board is alive and well. @tsukimoto, as always I agree with you completely. You wrote that about leaving SGI you had some initial fear/discomfort, "But as time went by, I began to feel a sense of relief and freedom... I didn't have to sit through meetings where everyone was talking about how grea
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
9 years ago
doubtful
@SGBye who wrote, "In my opinion, chanting is just a bunch of superstitious, hocus-pocus nonsense. I've got no problem with someone chanting if they want to use it as some sort of meditation activity to help calm their mind or whatever. But chanting for money, a car, a house, etc.? It's absolutely amazing what grown adults can be tricked into thinking." When I first joined bac
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Wakatta1 who wrote, "If Ikea wants to set a great example of how SGI is 'fighting so hard' for racial equality, perhaps they can start in their own backyard where discrimination is rife against the NiSei and especially the "war babies" from returned GI's in the 60's. As I mentioned also about the Burraku and the Japanese government's ShoHon and ToHon pract
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@The AntiCult, well you asked for witnesses. I am not sure I can provide them but the sculptor's website talks about the piece. It is not of Ikeda. It's about the incident he witnessed. Here is the info from the sculptor Margot McMahon's website. "The sculpture "Peace and Justice" symbolizes the 50 year passionate effort for Peace and Justice that have been the h
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Jackie_Flash who wrote, "Comparing the different versions of The Human Revolution has caused me to realize that President Ikeda is trying to re-write history." Welcome Jackie. I am glad you posted. It seems like most of us have run out of interest, time, or willingness here. I never could understand how or why anyone would read The Human Revolution. The little of it I ever read--only a
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@tsukimoto who wrote, "The monument honored Ikeda, as well as Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore, Italian poet Francesco Petrarca and British poet William Wordsworth. Can you believe this -- Ikeda's saying that he belongs in the company of such great poets as Tagore, Petrarca and Wordsworth?" Well, given that Ikeda and SGI have tried to classify Ikeda as the equal of Gandhi and King,
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@tsukimoto who wrote, "The following is from SGI's website: www.sgi.org: In May, 2006, a monument dedicated to world poet laureates was dedicated at SGI's Korea-Japan Friendship Training Center on Jeju Island, South Korea. The monument honored Ikeda, as well as Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore, Italian poet Francesco Petrarca and British poet William Wordsworth." After having
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Nichijew who wrote, "Could you please cite any Buddhist Sutra or writing of Nichiren Daishonin that teaches monks, let alone laymen, to accept so many alms as to be able to buy mansions, wear brocaded silk robes , and send their kids to private school?" Mark, I agree with you for the most part. But I am compelled to admit that it's highly unrealistic to expect a religious organiz
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Nichijew who wrote, "Please tell me how hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in individual salaries , fits into Shakyamuni Buddha's and Nichiren's model of the Buddhist faith." You are right in claiming that Shakyamuni and Nichiren subsisted on the bare minimum and carried out their Buddhist faith. You are right that top SGI leaders from Ikeda on down earn large salaries a
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@tsukimoto and The Anticult who wrote: "As Anticult has said, SGI is VERY wealthy -- and yet it's almost unheard of in most parts of the United States. This was no accident. An organization doesn't make that much money from happenstance and dumb luck; it takes a well-planned, long-range strategy. This policy of flying under the radar is deliberate -- and comes from the most senior
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Rothaus, welcome back! I have missed you. I was starting to wonder what happened to you. Your posts and recommendations were an important part of my recovery from SGI last summer. I don't have any info re: membership in SGI these days but earlier posts will show you some new participants in this forum. @tsukimoto who wrote, "SGI does this quite a lot: sponsors all of these organization
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@spamster who wrote, " Daisaku Ikeda has written some of the best interpretations of Nichirens writings, that are available - they are well worth reading to get a modern, 'daily life' understanding of Buddhism. however, simply by calling him 'sensei' and saying you can 'feel his heart' repeatedly, you will not change your life in any way whatsoever. Also, while
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Ogi who wrote, "It was an encouragement that stated the spirit of the SGI would actually make it a buddha. It said people would actually talk about "Buddha Soka Gakkai" in the future." Welcome to this forum. I look forward to your posts. For just about all of my 21 years with SGI I would avoid people or resources critical of SGI. However, for much of that time using the inte
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@ScoobyDooby who wrote, " Recently, it seems most of the discussion concerns "how I can continue my practice without the SGI" or "how can we save Nicherin Buddhism from the SGI" with little discussion on the cult of SGI. This makes me uncomfortable participating here." Thanks for reminding us to stay focused. This forum was a tremendous help when I severed my ties wi
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Wakatta1 who wrote, ]"When I severed ties with SGI one of the first things that went was the chanting and gongyo. My reasoning was this: Like an iceberg, the part of the practice that was visible was flawed. If Ikea could change gongyo on a whim, if he could change and re-manufacture the gohonzon on a whim, then it was reduced to being just some human creation, subject to all the distortion
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Wakatta1 who wrote, ]"Having practiced very hard as a member, consuming a lot of reading material and struggling to grasp the teaching, I decided that (for me at least) it didn't make sense to simply move to another, "NSA-like" organization and simply resolved to go on with my life divested of the vestiges of that old philosophy. The core of the practice and the belief system
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@The Anticult who wrote "But deep breathing with a slow release, gives a calm feeling just like chanting" Okay, I am not promoting chanting or SGI but deep breathing does not produce the same effects as chanting daimoku. I got a bunch of cds of deep breathing meditations etc. last year. I used them alone and with small groups. I got very little out of my multiple tries. I went in with a
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Shavoy who wrote, "A few things on the mind.....first off, in the latest WT coverage on the earthquake/tsunami...SGI-USA apparently donated $50,000 to the relief effort. A mere drop from the SGI bucket, shall we say?" No, no, no! Please do not tell me that 50K is all SGI has given for relief efforts in Japan. Please do not tell me that they are hitting up the members for money when SG
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Nichijew who wrote, "Now I spend my time refuting SGI and their leaders and praising the Lotus Sutra, Shakyamuni Buddha, and Nichiren Daishonin." All I can say is give 'em hell Mark! Your devotion to refuting SGI's claims and actions should be welcome even by SGI leaders. One of the things that makes us special(especially Westerners) is our ability to open ourselves up for de
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@Shavoy who wrote, "one of the things that made sense to me when I started was the Cause and Effect thing. Good Cause = Good Effect, Bad Cause = Bad Effect. I know that sounds simplistic. But still....I've thought a lot lately that this fundamental tenet spares no one...except possibly, Mr. Ikeda...these are some baddddddd causes...playing sincere, good-hearted people for lowly fools---
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@tsukimoto who wrote, "Soka Gakkai International-USA purchased 3834 Opal St. in Oakland, CA, from The Lions Center for the Blind for $2.3 million, or approximately $171 per square foot." All right let's be fair. SGI is still in existence and buying more property for a community center (I presume that's what "office and activities" refers to) is something we should ex
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@overthetop who wrote, "finally took down my Gohonzon, respectfully stored away, I just couldn't keep it there anymore. Now, I just have my Buddha sculpture. I don't want to feel bitter about my experience with SGI, but it's hard sometimes to not feel sort of spiritually violated. No offense to any of you that stayed in SGI for years, and felt like you were changing the liv
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@tsukimoto who wrote, "You're told that you get benefit if you "shakabuku," lots of people (get them to join SGI.) So that encourages members to just look at friends and family with the agenda "Get them to join," rather than just enjoying time with them. Yet once the person joins -- quite often nobody pays them any further attention. There's no concern about dev
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@TheVoid and @chooselife You wrote, "did it never cross your mind as odd, that you had pics of Ikeda and his wife on you ALTAR!!!" Okay, I am guilty as charged. I still have a pic of Ikeda in the room where I chant but I never put it anywhere near the altar at anytime in the past 21 years of my practice. I always had a feeling that would be wrong. However, I did really like the black
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@chirider who wrote about, "...other sites that ex-sgi members talk about there run-ins with members. They still practice Nichiren Buddhism without the leadership of sgi. Here is the site if you want to look and read, Buddhist Thunder dot com" I checked this out. While I agree with the purest approach to Nichiren Buddhism adopted by this group, reading their stuff helped me understan
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@chooselife who wrote, "i dont know if i can deal with the guilt of "abandoning" my members. please help, im a bit of an emotional wreck here:)" If you have been reading the thread you already know what some of us will say about your dilemma. Leaving SGI was very hard for me but it was a decision I continue to be glad I made. I was a district leader for over 6 years, a member
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@tsukimoto who wrote "I feared that bad things would happen to me because I left -- and criticized SGI. I worried that I wouldn't be able to maintain the positive changes I'd made in my life without SGI. So much of my time had been taken up by chanting or SGI activities -- what was I going to do without SGI? I spent so much time with SGI members -- wasn't it going to be lonely
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
doubtful
@chirider, You wrote, "That is why we need to plant the seed first. Head to head never works, you just have to be better than them. Oh! This happened in 1976 and I joined in 1974. There was not much you could prove back then, but not now with the internet and everything else."I have to agree with backnforth who wrote that "it just feels wrong to be in this type of a battle that is
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
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