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12 years ago
tsukimoto
Welcome, Dasutari -- nah, we're friendly, nobody is going to burn you at stake. I myself was a member and leader in SGI for many years, and there are things that I liked and now miss about it. For me, there were just too many bad things mixed in with the good. For you, the good outweighs the bad. SGI groups certainly CAN differ greatly -- depending on who the leaders and
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
QuoteIsabella Naaah, I cannot quite believe this. Time will show, but a leader will sometime be found. First everybody will be dazed and confused but people adapt quickly. I think on the contrary in our economic climate right now with people losing their houses and their jobs and on the other side having to pay more and more for gas and electricity and so on, the ground for cult-like organisation
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
Yes, Japan's New Komeito Party is the Soka Gakkai's political party in Japan, and the Japanese SGI members are heavily pressured to contribute money, campaign for, and vote for New Komeito Party candidates. SGI-USA owns some pricey real estate in the United States -- and yet they continue to ask for contributions, even from members who are living paycheck to paycheck. What will ha
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
SGI targets and recruits really nice people? I don't know about that. A large number of members and leaders in SGI-USA are Japanese. In the Japanese culture, there is enormous pressure to avoid confrontation. Yet, under this "nice" surface, there can be a lot of anger and contempt for people who can't or won't fit the mold. Not aggressive aggression like Lan
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
QuoteThe AnticultI may have overstated that, from actual experience, it seems to depend on the person. SGI folks are coached to keep working on people to covert them to SGI, as they are told its good Karma. But some SGI people with more common sense seem to lay-off, after you tell them 25x you're not interested. Others seem to keep trying to convert their friends for literally years on en
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
Rangdrol, Yes, maybe someday I'll get a t-shirt made up, with "Taiten and Proud" on the front, and "Stop Advancing In the Wrong Direction" on the back! (But I won't wear it to an SGI meeting.) There are a lot of ex-SGI members in cyberspace, and two websites in particular helped me feel better about my decision to leave. I also joined Yahoo's "T
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
QuoteSparkytsukimoto and Rangdrol, Man, you guys bring me back...shakabuku! What a scream! Can any logical person believe that SHOUTING in sanscript at strangers at stop signs etc. is going to make them say "Hey...SGI...wow, that's for ME! Just look at how they abuse strangers! I canb't wait for them to abuse me as a member!" I remember my wife (girlfriend at the tim
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
Rangdrol, thanks for sharing your story. You left SGI shortly before I joined, in 1987. SGI, in the eighties, was certainly in its manic phase. Activities every night of the week, intense pressure to do 'street shakabuku' (ie, go up to complete strangers on the street and ask them if they knew about Nam myoho renge kyo,) quotas for the number of 'shakabukus' (new conv
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
Sparky, our mutual friend doesn't mind being called "Dave." He does, however, get irritable when you call him "Snookums." Dave was the leader who told me that Americans ask too many questions. We were discussing the SGI's party line about the Soka Gakkai/Nichiren Shoshu priesthood split. I had not even called him; he called me. One of my local leaders ha
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
Anticult, it doesn't really bother me that people chant for "stuff." I think it's human nature. I have a good Catholic friend who prays to St. Anthony for lost items and parking spaces. She still is a very sincere and compassionate Christian. What bothers me more about SGI is the worship of Daisaku Ikeda, the constant demands on your time, the nastiness toward othe
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
I was a Soka Gakkai member for -- I hate to say it -- eighteen years. At the time I joined, my life was going pretty badly. My fiance had left me and I had also just been fired. So, needless to say, I was miserable and didn't know what to do next. My best friend, who was also having problems with men, work and her family, had just joined SGI, and encouraged me to go to meetings with
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
10 years ago
tsukimoto
Well, when I was in my cult...becoming disenchanted with it and trying to decide whether to leave -- I went through anger, denial, and bargaining, as well as depression and acceptance. Anger -- I was just frustrated at all the demands my group made on me. I was angry that I couldn't get any answers to my questions. Denial -- I didn't want to leave; I had friends in the g
Forum: Recovery from Destructive Cults and Groups
11 years ago
tsukimoto
Cults really do a lot of the same things -- whether they are Buddhist, Islamic, Christian, New-Age, Pagan, or even secular psychotherapy cults. Isolating members from friends and family is very common. Sometimes it's very blatant -- members living together in an isolated compound. Other times, it's more subtle. The leaders keep you so busy with group activities -- after awhil
Forum: Recovery from Destructive Cults and Groups
11 years ago
tsukimoto
I can relate to a lot of this too. I left a Japanese Buddhist group, the Soka Gakkai, also known as SGI in 2006, after almost twenty years with it. I didn't consider it a cult at the time either. I saw cults as being like the Moonies, Hare Krishnas, or polygamists --- their members wore distinctive dress, lived and worked on isolated compounds together, and their leaders told them
Forum: Recovery from Destructive Cults and Groups
11 years ago
tsukimoto
615. Re: SGI
NotanantiGnostic, "Pastmember" must be a member of the Nichiren Shoshu Buddhists. SGI, also known as Soka Gakkai International, used to be the lay organization of Nichiren Shoshu. So SGI members were also Nichiren Shoshu members until 1990. However, there were years of problems between the priests of Nichiren Shoshu and the lay leadership of the Soka Gakkai, especially the pre
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
11 years ago
tsukimoto
This is a great insight -- thanks for posting it. I agree with you -- Ikeda certainly could have read Maoist and Marxist philosophy in his youth. After World War II, Japan was devastated. The Japanese were searching for anything to give them meaning, hope and the promise of a better future. This is how so many bizarre cults flourished after the war. People were just so desperate. N
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
11 years ago
tsukimoto
Yes, I was a Soka Gakkai (sect of Japanese Buddhism) member for almost 20 years. I met them at a very low point in my life; a good friend of mine had just joined and began encouraging me to go to meetings with her. Everyone seemed so warm and positive. I joined and spent a great deal of time on Soka Gakkai activities, planning and working at various activities. At the time, it seeme
Forum: "Cults," Sects, and "New Religious Movements"
11 years ago
tsukimoto
Quote~*~ k a t e ~*~A new experience posted on the Diamond Way Truths site: Quote When I went to a Diamond Way centre for the first time I was received very warmly and surrounded with hugs and kisses. Everyone was very interested in who I was, what I was doing and what were my opinions. Then the more I stayed in the center I started to notice that what I thought was in fact pretty irrelevant
Forum: "Cults," Sects, and "New Religious Movements"
11 years ago
tsukimoto
QuoteChristaQuoteMeadowThis comment was posted on Janaki's weblog on the contact page: Quote <SNIP> We had to chose something dear to give away, knowing that we will never see it back. People, competing for BK’s love, gave their computers, homes, wedding rings…. <SNIP> HOMES??? People give this crazy fraud-woman and her phony-translator husband their HOMES? The weddin
Forum: "Cults," Sects, and "New Religious Movements"
11 years ago
tsukimoto
Stephen Cope, in his book "Yoga and the Search for the True Self," writes a lot about the "orphan" archetype, and how that can push people into the arms of unscrupulous gurus. He writes about his experiences with the Kripalu Center in Massachusetts, but I found his book very helpful when I was trying to get out of another group. I think that his insights can apply to a v
Forum: "Cults," Sects, and "New Religious Movements"
11 years ago
tsukimoto
Quotebeststarsign Also suggest you read the Lotus sutra which Buddha taught in the last 8 years of his Life.He also asked people to discard the earlier teachings as they were provisional and he used them merely to bringup the Understanding of the people so that they can understand the Lotus sutra.Lotus Sutra is a revolutinary teaching by many standards. pls study it and then pass Judgement.You wr
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
11 years ago
tsukimoto
Well, Theravada Guy, welcome to Rick Ross, and sorry that the relationship didn't work out. Have you read the "Former SGI Members" thread? It discusses a lot of the points you've mentioned here. Nichiren was a monk in 13th century Japan. As a young man, he wondered why there were so many different Buddhist sects in Japan -- and why life there was so miserable, w
Forum: Former Cult Members and Affected Families
12 years ago
tsukimoto
QuotecorboyI heard someone claim that in some states BK SHIT is being offered in some states as Continuing Education credits. We need to research this. The person seemed to assume that if something was offered as CE credit, that meant the method was okay to use as a resource for clients. If BK crap is being offered as CE credit, that means someone on the review board for that particular
Forum: "Cults," Sects, and "New Religious Movements"
12 years ago
tsukimoto
I left a Buddhist chanting group two years ago. I was very ambivalent for years -- leaving and coming back, leaving and coming back. There were things I loved about it. Chanting was very grounding, I liked the fellowship and the feeling of being in a community, and just the positive energy -- feeling optimistic that I could really change my life for the better and help others. Some of
Forum: Recovery from Destructive Cults and Groups
12 years ago
tsukimoto
I'd love to know how other people develop this too. For me, part of the answer is just trying to stay aware of my tendency to put other people on pedestals and believe that they know more about my life than I do -- and to want to seek their approval. I was a good student in school -- always wanting to please my teachers. You did that by giving them the right answer. Since school,
Forum: Recovery from Destructive Cults and Groups
12 years ago
tsukimoto
QuoteblueskyI think its really important, if only for her victims sake, to not empower Katie by proxy. Reality shows that she's a flim flam woman pure and simple, The bigger problem evidenced here, rather than Katie et al ..is that people are undervaluing their own choices..or are denying them and the responsibility to make them. bluesky I like to travel, and some of the places I�
Forum: "Cults," Sects, and "New Religious Movements"
12 years ago
tsukimoto
QuoteTHE_DEAN_001 Let go of all these thoughts and self-judgments and maybe you will begin to understand that these thoughts are the cause of your suffering. All you need to do is let go of all this obsessive thinking and look within yourself...no guru can do that for you. Allow yourself to be at peace. My advice would be to spend a few minutes each day asking yourself, "what is it t
Forum: Recovery from Destructive Cults and Groups
12 years ago
tsukimoto
QuoteThe Anticult certainly neutral "chanting" could calm the mind, in many ways. it doesn't have to be connected with a cult. Anticult, you are right, a person can just chant or meditate without being part of some group. Still, I think a person has to be careful with chanting and meditation, if they're leaving a cult where these were practiced. Right after I left my
Forum: Recovery from Destructive Cults and Groups
12 years ago
tsukimoto
I also think that the placebo affect, and the effects that chanting and meditation can have on the brain can't be discounted. My father, when he was in the Navy as a young man, had this shipmate who had terrible insomnia. The guy consulted the medic, who gave him some pills and told him, "These are the strongest sleeping pills I have. Just take one before you go to bed -- nev
Forum: Recovery from Destructive Cults and Groups
12 years ago
tsukimoto
QuoteThe Anticult I used to believe in a "sophisticated" form of New Thought, which leads you down some strange paths. You try to believe that Thought has some kind of direct impact on the "external" world, in some spooky way. This is at the root of almost all new agey philosphies. And as mentioned, you get into things like the Confirmation Bias and other related thi
Forum: Recovery from Destructive Cults and Groups
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