by James C. Stephens


Friday, April 23, 1971

Today, Sogohonbucho leaves for Japan…Over the last few days my worst nature has been coming out. But I must face it, it is mine and no one else’s. Last night I attacked my parents and brother with the worst vulgarity and slander. I don’t blame them for not having the least confidence in me. Everything they accused me of was 100% correct. They really did a great benefit to me by reflecting my true condition.

They said that I was becoming closed-minded, sliding my old friends, my family; not contributing anything to the family. On top of it all, I was not taking an interest in anything outside of Buddhism. I know nothing’s outside Buddhism, but still they’re right. I haven’t even followed my teacher’s guidance. They say I am not a good son, but continually try to convert them to Buddhism. Maybe it’s about time I waked up to the realization that Buddhism is equal to life and that activities should not be used as an excuse for sliding family, friends, and studies.

My practice has been sliding downhill also, so I have decided to make the following determination.

–3 hours good, sincere Diamoku a day until Sho-Hondo-

That must mean even if I’m ready to drop dead_3 hrs. diamoku.

My second determination must be straight B’s on my report card this semester.

My third determination is to recultivate old friends and doing only Geshu on them.

My fourth determination is to become a Better Son and Brother in the family and hold up part of the Burden that comes with sharing a position in the family.

In general I must have the determination to develop a determination to fulfill my goals as a human being.

 

…I am almost 20 years old and it is about time I searched for my mission and developed.

 

I just realized the significance of having our General Meeting at the Hollywood Bowl on the 8th of May. Because if we fill it, the 8th that will determine the spirit on the 12th. Our goal on the 8th must be also 17,000.


 

 

Geshu is defined as “sowing the seed of Buddhism” as opposed to the more aggressive form of shakubuku. During Phase Two influenced by the negative publicity of the cultic mass suicide at Jonestown, Nichiren Shoshu Academy, aka Soka Gakkai, decided to practice geshu, a type of Friendship Evangelism as opposed to Shakubuku, “the breaking and tearing of other faiths.” 

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