The world mourns the loss of Daisaku Ikeda, a visionary and trailblazing figure who dedicated his life to the advancement of Buddhism and the pursuit of global peace. On Wednesday, at the age of 95, Ikeda passed away at his residence in Tokyo, leaving behind a profound legacy that influenced millions of people across the globe.
Ikeda assumed the leadership of Soka Gakkai, a lay Buddhist organization with an impressive membership of over 8.27 million households, in 1960. Throughout his tenure, he revolutionized the organization’s role in Japanese society. Beyond spiritual guidance, Soka Gakkai became actively involved in the political sphere, throwing its support behind Komeito, the junior coalition partner of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s Liberal Democratic Party.
In the midst of navigating the intricate balance between politics and religion, Ikeda played a significant role in the formation of Komeito. The formation of this political group in 1964 paved the way for a renewed focus on Soka Gakkai’s core activities while maintaining influence in the political arena.
Recognized for his unwavering commitment to global peace, Ikeda established the Soka Gakkai International in 1979. This international organization boasts a membership of 2.8 million individuals spread across over 190 countries and territories. Upholding the humanistic philosophy of Nichiren Buddhism, Ikeda engaged in dialogues with influential world leaders and intellectuals to explore avenues for building a harmonious and peaceful world.
Ikeda’s tireless dedication to peace-building initiatives led him to engage with prominent figures such as the late Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai and former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. Through constructive conversations and collaborations, Ikeda paved the way for greater understanding and cooperation on global issues.
Born in Tokyo in 1928 to a family of seaweed manufacturers, Ikeda’s personal experiences during World War II deeply influenced his commitment to peace. This transformative period in history, marked by immense suffering and strife, ignited Ikeda’s lifelong mission to create a world free from conflict and division.
Q: What is Soka Gakkai?
A: Soka Gakkai is a lay Buddhist organization in Japan with a significant presence and influence. It focuses on the teachings of Nichiren Buddhism and engages in various activities to promote personal and social well-being.
Q: What is Komeito?
A: Komeito is a political party in Japan and the junior coalition partner of the Liberal Democratic Party. It was formed in 1964 with the support of Soka Gakkai.
Q: How did Daisaku Ikeda contribute to peace-building?
A: Daisaku Ikeda dedicated his life to promoting peace on a global scale. Through Soka Gakkai International, he initiated dialogues and collaborations with world leaders and intellectuals, fostering greater understanding and cooperation in the pursuit of global peace.
– Soka Gakkai Official Website: https://www.sokagakkai.or.jp/