Buddha Patriot

A Classically Liberal Neoconservative Tibetan Buddhist from the Midwest

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

What is Soka Gakkai?

From the Japan Times:

Not a bad primer on the super-duper creepy Japanese "Buddhist" cult- especially considering that the Japan Times has run opinion pieces by Mister "Living Buddha" himself, Daisaku Ikeda.

Features SGI's political activities, Soka-run schools, leadership, finances, celebrity members, and this interesting tidbit about its media strategies:

What does the Seikyo Shimbun cover?
More than half of its contents are about activities of the group, including where Ikeda goes, who he meets and what other famous members do. Articles about and photos of Ikeda appear on every front page.
With its circulation of 5.5 million, it is Japan's third-largest daily, after the Yomiuri Shimbun's 10.02 million and the Asahi Shimbun's 8.04 million. It does not own printing equipment and thus pays major newspaper publishers for its press runs.
Critics say Soka Gakkai's aim is to be a customer of major newspapers to dissuade them from generating negative press. Newspaper publishers have many customers as advertisers, but Soka Gakkai is arguably the only one that helps them make effective use of their expensive presses.


Blogger bryantp said...

So bitter. I've practiced in what you call a cult since 1974, both in Japan and in the US. I think you're terribly misinformed. Certainly some SGI folks get a little nutty...as do some folks in every religion. Yet, leaders of the world continue to meet with Mr. Ikeda and to seek his support and advice. We're official members of the U.N. Sorry, but you're way off base.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008  
Blogger Chris said...

Bitter? I dunno- it's not like I missed out on the "Soka Gakkai Sweepstakes" (though a bit peeved I didn't make the Soka Gakkai Olympics in the '60s)...but now that you mention it- that "award" that Senor Ikeda got his name on- the one with Martin Luther King, Jr. and Mohandas Ghandi?- that's just disgusting. The shit isn't even in the same universe as those giants.

Nice to hear you've been an SGI nutjob since the '70s- I found out last year that a (former) friend of mine had been a "practitioner" of Scientology for years and years . . .and years!!

Yes, yes- I know all about the frickin' "honorary degrees", the photo ops with "world leaders", the official NGO status at the UN- just lovely.

And thanks for letting me know that I'm "way off base", man. That's totally gnarly!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008  

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