Unusual Connections …
By Tamara Rindahl
I wonder how many members of the Massachsetts DoE are aware of the Spirit of Knowledge Academy’s connection with the Soka Gakkai, a Japanese Buddhist organization — or with the Japanese government’s New Komeito Party?
Daisaku Ikeda, the head of the Soka Gakkai International, is listed as a writer and educator. In fact, he is the president of the Soka Gakkai International, a lay Buddhist organization formerly affiliated with the Nichiren Shoshu School of Buddhism. The Soka Gakkai split with the Nichiren Shoshu priests in the 1990’s, with both sides accusing the other of financial and sexual misconduct.
With those meddlesome priests out of the way, Ikeda, a billionaire, is now able to do whatever he wishes, including telling his members that they cannot achieve enlightenment unless they take him as their mentor, and buying over 200 degrees from various universities. He also funds a “Gandhi, King and Ikeda” exhibit, comparing himself to Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr.
The Soka Gakkai and the New Komeito Party have a reputation for corruption and financial misconduct in Japan. Soka Gakkai members who have tried to leave have been harassed and threatened. The Soka Gakkai members in Japan are also pressured to donate money to, do unpaid work for, and vote for New Komeito Party candidates at election time.
Are these the people whom you want to be running a Massachusetts public school — educating your children, spending your tax dollars?