ALERT


 

MISCONCEPTIONS OF UNITY AND FAITH IN THE ABSENCE OF ACCOUNTABILITY

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ALERT


July 4, 2001

This essay will make an overall inquiry into the consequences and effects when such systems exist in a religious institution that suppress and deny the fundamental rights of its members in an era where these rights are essential to peoples enlightenment. The question, that if a true unity can be achieved based on the spirit and teachings of Nichiren Daishonin without such ideals in place in our organization, will be analyzed. Further probes will cover what happens to the faith, the people and their organization when such principles are absent. The final question that is, how can such pure hearted members who have been protecting the organization for over thirty years, be suddenly ostracized and demonized by the leaders and members alike for demanding accountability and asserting their fundamental rights, will be answered. The conclusion of this article will present solutions for change based on a quote form the Gosho by Nichiren Daishonin, guidance by President Makiguchi and President Ikeda, a final comment by Dr. Martin Luther King followed by a conclusion .

To give substance to this inquiry I now will present three quotes: one from Nichiren Daishonin one from Mr. Makiguchi and others from President Ikeda. It will become apparent that the combination of these three guidance's can only mean the total empowerment of the membership to directly participate in the affairs of the organization and have the power to hold the leaders directly accountable to them. 

1 Nichiren Daishonin states: "Not even the treasures of the entire universe can equal the value of a single human life".

2. "Mr. Makiguchi insisted that the constituent members of a body or organization must direct the actions of the leaders."

3. President Ikeda says in his dialogue with Bryan Wilson:
"In the Soka Gakkai we have until recently adopted the traditional pyramid pattern Nevertheless, in keeping with fundamental Buddhist egalitarianism and in harmony with prevailing social trends in Japan especially among younger people we are in the process of shifting to a basic circle system of organization ensuring total equality and solidarity. We by no means insist however that other related groups on other countries follow our lead in this matter. All people and nations have their own individual traditions and backgrounds, which ought to find a reflection in local religious organizations. In the matter of adapting systems to suit local needs. I also believe flexibility to be the most effective approach as long as the maximum number of members is allowed to participate in organizational control."

.President Ikeda also states: "The people are the sovereign"  and that the ideals stated in the Declaration of Independence are "...principles that stand in perfect consonance with the spirit of Mahayana Buddhism".

My only comment is that President Ikeda's speech came about 50 years after Makiguchi's guidance and Japan has now has taken the lead toward an empowerment system of control of the organization by the members while SGI-USA whose culture and society has embraced such a system over 200 years ago has done nothing to change it's outdated system. While it's understandable in Japan that such a process might have to have taken longer because of their traditions, there is no excuse that a system of empowerment should not have happened in the SGI-USA many years earlier. At the same time, a system of empowerment of the members in Japan obviously might be completely different in it's scope and structure from the SGI-USA's organization in the land based on the American tradition of full empowerment of the people from  it's inception. Why as an American, who has lived in a society where we have always been free to assert our inalienable rights, are we still forced to embrace an archaic system that would be totally contrary to our cultural inheritance? What are the leaders in the SGI thinking? United States exported democratic ideals to Japan after the war, some 60 years ago. In this present day, no faith, no person, no organization can stand above the fundamental rights of the people and represent the teaching of the True Buddha. The timing of such a system without these rights are devastating to its members, especially because the birth of freedom activates the circumstance for the completion of the law and its propagation. Thus revealing the nature and true propose of Nichiren Daishonin's appearance as the True Buddha in the latter day of the law.

THE ORIGIN OF DEMOCRATIC IDEALS

Thomas Jefferson stated that the reason that America was going to war with England was because the people had no rights in holding the leaders accountable and had no power in dismissing them no matter how despicable their actions might be. Because only the leaders could police the leaders of the crown, their own positions were secured only if they were willing to maintain such a unified front to cover for each other, no matter how devious the actions of their fellow leaders might be. This was the only accepted process of gaining control and maintaining order at that time. This led to the loss of people's fundamental rights, the basis of their freedom. How serious are the consequences of losing your inalienable rights. Patrick Henry stated regarding this matter "give me liberty or give me death".  Life and faith have no meaning without them. 

Historical Perspective:

Presently the worlds secular systems are now changing into organizations of democracy through direct accountability of the leaders by the people, as mentioned in the essay Victorious America. This is leading to the of elimination of tyrannies and monarchies worldwide. Those that are not changing are finding themselves increasingly at odds with the international community. Unfortunately this movement for fundamental rights and accountability in major religious institutions is almost negligible and very similar to actions in cults where the members are demonized by the leaders when they try to assert their fundamental rights. What becomes the common theme in these religious institutions is the elimination of the fundamental rights of the members by their leaders in the name of protecting the reputation of the organization and preserving the faith. These leaders have historically become an omnipotent and elite class. Thus any unity which is achieved without this cornerstone of democratic ideals in place is nothing other than a place where the membership is subservient to the leaders. I repeat, there can be no unity based on democratic ideals without direct accountability of the leaders to the people that must be in place within the organizational guidelines, that specify these rights and procedures to be taken by the membership that is to be ratified by them. 

Now to the prime point of this article. What happens when the cornerstone for democratic ideals is absent from our institution? How does it effect faith? How does it effect the members?

WHEN THIS CORNERSTONE IS MISSING IN A RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION  WHAT EFFECT DOES THIS HAVE ON FAITH?

This one action, this cornerstone, (ACCOUNTABILITY) that Jefferson describes is the source of the democratic ideal. It is the cornerstone because it is the origin, the prime action that provides the catalyst from which all democratic ideals flow and become a reality. If this cornerstone is eliminated form the equation, all fundamental rights cease to exist. They are rendered useless because they cannot be acted upon by the people to hold those that would deny or trample on their rights directly accountable to them. The democratic ideal can only be initiated and ignited by this action or the people cannot be fully empowered to maintain and protect their fundamental rights. This is the eternal mandate of the people. If they lose this,  they lose the basis of their individual integrity and freedom.

This action is the direct link to the universal integrity of the Law and justice of humankind and the peoples empowerment. It is a faucet that must never be permitted to be shut off by any person, any group, or religious or secular institution, especially those that are in essence supposed to represent the people's best interests. If they are permitted to do so even in the name of the most noble goals, the yoke of democratic ideals will be broken and the flow of any type of democratic process will cease and be eliminated by leaders who replace these actions with control and compliance of the members to reach all objectives. When this happens,  the direct accountability of the leaders is eliminated and the objectives become suspect no matter how noble they may be. This is simply the establishment of absolute power by eliminating fundamental rights. This sequence and the process of eliminating peoples rights have been secured through a consistent blueprint of deception throughout human history. This is an historical fact for all to witness, so it can be prevented from ever gaining a foothold from the present time forth.  It is simply the edifice of suppression. In common terms it is permitting the fox to watch over the chicken coop. Thus there are no democratic ideals without the leaders direct accountability to the members and the full empowerment of the members to assert and enforce them.

Thus the statement as quoted from President Ikeda, that democratic ideals "stand in perfect consonance with the spirit of Mahayana Buddhism"  would be erroneous in a Buddhist organization that eliminated this cornerstone (accountability) as the basis of its organizational structure from within. Such an organization cannot represent Buddhist doctrine because the use of faith and its purpose will become compromised by such a structure. Faith gives us the strength to carry out these ideals. Having faith empowers people to have the courage to fight for their fundamental rights when they are denied. These rights can never be separated from faith because it is the guiding force of faith. It is only this union, the integration of such noble ideals with the absolute power of faith that a true alliance is formed, providing a dynamo which has the power to ignite the noble principles of our faith to their fullest capacity. With this formula in place the ideal that faith equals daily life becomes a true reality producing the unending chain reaction needed to achieve world peace. Without this cornerstone in place in our religious organization, the function and purpose of faith can only be used as a tool to keep people subservient to the authorities, thus dismantling the functions of faith by defaulting on its purpose. Such an omission renders the faith inferior. No faith, no person, no institution, stands above the fundamental rights of the people.

The standard for eternal life and enlightenment of a true teaching and faith, are based on the true battle against evil which has at it root, the sole purpose and function of destroying freedom of expression causing immobility in the face of evil actions through the elimination of inalienable rights. The soul of Nichiren's heart and the main function of propagating Nam Myoho Renge Kyo is to elevate the life condition of the individual where integrity plays the central role in ones existence, thus producing a citizenry that is more active in protecting the fundamental rights and democratic ideals for themselves and others in the societies where they live. This is the gateway to justice, the essence of True Buddhism. President Ikeda says that faith is supposed to support democratic ideals. Without fundamental rights there are no democratic ideals. Any organization which uses faith as a means to deny the people their rights is holding both the faith and its members hostage, preventing the unleashing of the dynamic power to reform society and create world peace, the ultimate goal.

Thus when a religious organization eliminates this cornerstone in their own system, they are in essence eliminating this cornerstone from the ultimate pool of wisdom that faith contains, which is the guiding force that is the essential ingredient for protecting the faith and people. This would be complete disrespect to Nichiren Daishonins life. In chanting to the Gohonzon how could the people incorporate these principles and tap their source and use them to protect the organization if they have been denied these rights by the leaders and the organization itself, who have in essence eliminated their use from the ultimate pool of wisdom of the Gohonzon. By doing so, the faith has been compromised. Thus, those in charge are free to control and set the boundaries of the members rights, thus putting them in the position of avoiding their own accountability. In essence, they have denied the people full empowerment within the organization. 

This poses the greatest threat to the individuals integrity because now their practice is void of fundamental freedoms in the organization they embrace because it has been eliminated both by the organization and through the perversion of the faith. Thus by doing this, the leaders have betrayed and deceived the membership of the true purpose of practice, which is to empower them. Instead, they end up depriving them of the wonderful treasure and the power contained in storehouse of faith to do true human revolution. So, in essence they have locked the doors to the Treasure Tower. When there are no fundamental rights in an organization, the faith is always manipulated by the leadership to put the people in compliance to support such a structure. The faith now becomes a tool used by the leadership to silence the people and establish their own absolute power. 

Are these rights in place in the SGI-USA today?

Frankly what we are witnessing is a system in the SGI-USA where there is nothing stated by word or mandate to protect the membership from the abuse of authoritarian power or challenge or ratify any overall organizational decisions. Instead the bylaws are written and ratified by the top leaders exclusively with no established provisions for the membership to challenge or participate in any such proceedings when it comes to major policy making decisions. This leaves the members open to actions of the leadership to take total control over them. The SGI-USA has no procedures or by-laws that directly gives the members the power to respond and hold their leaders directly accountable to them, thus eliminating any action to protect themselves and the organization from the abuse of unethical leaders. This responsibility has been denied to us and put totally in the hands of the leaders. Then how could the SGI-USA be the cornerstone of democratic ideals and still be in compliance with the statement that President Ikeda made about Mahayana Buddhism and democratic ideals?

Faith can never be represented in such a way that it would suppress the fundamental rights of the believers in the organization that represents the faith of absolute freedom. Fundamental rights are the sacred properties of the human condition that defines our humanity. If an organization manipulates faith in this way to strip humanity of these fundamental rights,  it is no longer an organization of faith, especially that of True Buddhism. Fundamental rights and freedom are not political tools, they are inalienable rights, the essence which defines our humanity and compassion. 

Those that say fundamental rights are secular rights and are therefore political and have no place in an organization of faith, I will say to you, those that would deny the people these rights are indulging in the highest order of political subterfuge themselves. Fundamental rights are the absolute standard for human dignity,  it is an essential part of ultimate wisdom. Thus by denying them, you are stripping the faith and its people of their integrity.  We can never rest while the organization embraces a structure that represents the True Buddha's teachings this way. It would be similar to asserting that Daibadatta represented Shakyamuni's teachings.

Continuation

December 15 2001

Through believing that the faith brings forth an ultimate pool of wisdom, is all embracing and is the embodiment of supreme judgment lacking in common mortals, they donít chant to the Gohonzon and cannot bring forth ultimate wisdom. Thus these that donít chant cannot liberate themselves from the lower conditions of life and attain absolute happiness in their daily lives and achieve the state of enlightenment throughout eternity. Of course this is very necessary especially in these troubled times, yet it is the promise of our faith and practice towards world peace as promised by Nichiern Diashonin and its wonderful ways. Thus praying chanting and through dialogue in our organizations solutions are supposed to be found.



Since our faith is so important the survival of our own faith and the protection of Nichiren Diashonins Buddhism is critical for the attainment t of world peace and enlightenment throughout eternity So its with the utmost seriousness I would like to approach the perilous condition we face on many levels so their can be no room for misunderstanding in clarifying the enormous destructive process as it has been occurring within our organization. That totally is at odds with its true purpose



THE MISCONCEPTION GIVEN TO THE MEMBERS BY THE LEADERS BY EQUATING POLITICS TO ACCOUNTABILITY IN ORDER STRIP THE MEMBERSHIP OF THEIR FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS AND THEIR EMPOWERMENT 



As I have mentioned before we can no longer separate what is labeled secular fundamental rights from faith in our organization claiming they are part of the political process because voting is involved. So to avoid the pitfalls of this part of the political process where leaders would become candidates with there own agendas and promises of special inters we have eliminated voting in our organization and I believe this is fundamental correct but the process of voting or not voting has nothing to do with acceptability or make accountability Political 

. In order to avoid the politics of voting we have adapted a system where only the leaders chose their fellow leaders which would be ok but at the present it has a greater potential for political sub defuse than voting because in this process their is no direct accountability to the members directly to oversea the actions of the leaders Thus to avoid accountability the leaders have linked the process of voting to accountability and called it political thus eliminating accountability from the organization procession the minds of the members If you have read Victorious America there is no agreement to voting as an option for the selection of leaders because this would truly divide us into political camps We only asserted that fundamental rights are not up for debate or vote their the universal properties that hold the democratic ideal together and we proposed a plan that would insure theses rights of the empowerment of the membership without voting 

That what was the real reason for our dismissal because we dared to wake up the people to their proper position in the organization and the fear of the leaders that people would use their fundamental rights and accountability to resist control from the leaders The leaders simply did not trust the peoples integrity where do this fit in to Nichrien Diashonin Buddhism, Mr. Kasahara said that the peoples representative committee is just their to hang the leaders hats. A strange statement in a country that puts the full responsibility on the peoples judgment how about jury duty and he says the people cannot handle there freedom they lack the potential He also said people are not ready to handle this responsibility. Well I must remind him that is what separates a tyranny from democracy accountability. The issues of fundamental rights was settled 200 years in America



The existence of politics in our organization structure are real despite the claims of the leaders that politicks cannot exist in this organization or it will be ruined Yet the function of politicks in the organization that exists among the leaders is beyond the worst nightmare where a corrupt leader might be Elected, in the secular world by Voting At least the safe guard in the system of voting which embraces the right for people to assert and demand accountability of the actions of their if they choose to do so to get that corrupt leader dismissed or held accountable for their action through the freedom of inquiry and their empowerment by law and such a move have been is now in progress the communities of America to have direct accuatlbituy to the people and the proposition of the people being able to dismiss such people from their positions is now has been on the plate in New York under the Mayor Guilliane

What is purely political is a system that is created that renders the membership ineffective by aborting their rights throughout eliminating their right to accountability Thus the members becomes powerless to deal with corrupt and unethical leaders which would directly affect them and the reputation of the organization and the faith This is the system which is presently in place in the SGI USA TODAY.

Thus decisions about such leaders are only left to the leaders who appointed them with the unwritten law that the requirement loyalty to each other for the sake of unity as a prime bases of their selection especially as they move on the higher levels of responsibility in the organization. This is nothing other than a wall of silence by the leaders

In our present system the leaders can escape such scrutiny of the people and protect and cover for each other in this way under the blanket of iron clad unity to protect the organization and use breaking unity the worst of slanders as a weapon to discredit all those who would challenge them in their actions or deeds it is in such a state that they keep their immunity from accountability Thus creating a pure political nightmare that remains hidden behind the abuse of our faith by the core leadership

It is the same system Gandhi fought against no representation of the people just a controlling elite making sure their subjects there little children are safe and happy as long as they donít question Its nothing more than a fairy tale of the elite presenting a picture of happy smiling serfs to promote their public image and satisfy President Ikeda so they can gain his praise and gain status they always keep the members silent about their actions by saying we cannot not worry President Ikeda he to busy to do this For them would be a disgrace if he found out something they were doing was not kosher and they should be treated as a traitor by their fellow leaders. Thus they are under the iron fist of there own making. What they fail to realize is this is the way to produce scandal because when the truth comes out and it will and the only person that will be attacked is President Ikeda because he is the head of the movement In the end who are theses leaders protecting themselves or President Ikeda What they are doing is nothing more than treating people like dogs and using President Ikeda to put mussels on them when they rebel against harsh treatment to shut them up 


To be continued and further edited as a work in progress...