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1. The Flower of Chinese Buddhism
2. Japans New Buddhism :Soka Gakkai
3. Buddhism: The First Millennium
4. The Living Buddha: An Interpretive
5. Nichiren Shoshu and Soka Gakkai
6. Nichiren's Lions: A Global Journey
7. Soka Gakkai Dictionary of Buddhism
8. Japan's new Buddhism;: An objective
9. The Soka Gakkai Dictionary on
10. Japan's New Buddhism: An Objective
11. The Soka Gakkai Dictionary on
12. The Liturgy of the Buddhism of
13. The Liturgy of the Buddhism of
14. The Liturgy of Nichiren Daishonin's
15. Dictionary of Buddhism
16. The Liturgy of the Buddhism of
17. Encountering the Dharma: Daisaku
18. How Soka Gakkai Became a Global
19. The Lotus and the Maple Leaf:
20. Soka Gakkai: From Lay Movement

1. The Flower of Chinese Buddhism (Soka Gakkai History of Buddhism)
by Daisaku Ikeda
Paperback: 176 Pages (2009-11-01)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$5.29
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0977924548
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

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Beginning with the introduction of the religion into China, this chronicle depicts the evolution of Buddhism. The career and achievements of the great Kumarajiva are investigated, exploring the famed philosophical treatises that form the core of East Asian Buddhist literature. Providing a useful and accessible introduction to the influential Tien-t’ai school of Buddhism in Japan as well as the teachings of the 13th-century monk Nichiren, this examination places special emphasis on the faith of the Lotus Sutra and the major works of masters such as Hui-su, Chih-i, and Chanjan. From the early translations of the Buddhist scriptures to the persecution of the T'ang dynasty, this exploration illuminates the role of Buddhism in Chinese society, and by extension, in humanity in general.
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Customer Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars An excellent, carefully researched chronicle
Part of the Soka Gakkai History of Buddhism series, The Flower of Chinese Buddhism chronicles the history of how Buddhism came to China, brought by traders and monks via the silk road, and how distinct Chinese schools of Buddhist thought came to be established (including the Tiantai school, which would later have a profound impact in Japan). Chapters further follow how Buddhism declined in China after brutal persecution during the tenth century, the deeds of notable Chinese Buddhist leaders of history, and the role of Buddhism in Chinese society. An excellent, carefully researched chronicle, "The Flower of Chinese Buddhism" is a must-have for Buddhist studies shelves. Also highly recommended are the other volumes in the series, "The Living Buddha: An Interpretive Biography" and "Buddhism: The First Millennium".

4-0 out of 5 stars Limited scope, but valuable for what it does cover
"The Flower of Chinese Buddhism" is well organized and clearly written, and presents a wonderful overview of the transmission of Buddhism into China.The author, Daisaku Ikeda, is knowledgable and very enthusiastic about the subject, and his respect and admiration for the early pioneers of Chinese Buddhism are contagious.

The reader should be aware, however, that, as the president of Soka Gakkai International (affiliated with the Nichiren Sect in Japan) the author has intentionally limited the scope of this book to those facets of Chinese Buddhist history that have particular relevance to the later development of the Nichiren Sect.To his credit, he is quite forthright about this, and openly states it in various contexts throughout the book.Thus, while this book is very informative in the topics that it does cover, the focus is mainly on the development of the T'ien-t'ai School and the study and practice of the Lotus Sutra --- and there is no mention at all of the Pure Land School, and only passing reference to other schools such as Ch'an (Zen), Hua-yen, Esoteric Buddhism, and so on, which were also important in the history of Chinese Buddhism.(This limited scope is the only reason I give it 4 stars instead of 5.)

This fact, however, should by no means limit interest in this book to T'ien-t'ai scholars or followers of the Japanese Nichiren Sect.It simply means that it should be read in conjunction with a broader survey of Chinese Buddhism."The Flower of Chinese Buddhism" has some real strengths, in particular its descriptions of the period when the Buddhist scriptures were being translated into Chinese by masters such as Kumarajiva, the travels to Central Asia and India of Chinese pilgrims such as Fa-shien and Hsuang-tsang, and the early attempts to classify and understand the vast (and sometimes contradictory) treasury of Buddhist scriptures that came flowing into China across the Silk Road over several centuries.Another strength is the discussion of the factors behind the persecutions of Buddhism that occurred several times in the course of Chinese history.

Despite its slightly narrow focus, the material that has been selected for in-depth coverage in this book is so well-written and informative that I'd strongly recommend it to anyone interested in one of the great spiritual and cultural encounters in world history: the remarkable story of the transmission of Buddhism from India to China.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book To Understand the Spread of Buddhism from India
This book is actually the third installation of Daisaku Ikeda's History of Buddhism book. The first two books: Living Buddha and The First Millenium deal with beginning of Buddhism and the first millenium of Buddhism since the death of the Buddha. The Flower of Chinese Buddhism is a really helpful book to understand the reason why there are many branches of Buddhism in the world today because basically almost everything can be attributed to its spread to China. I really recommend this book as a fundamental tool if you are seeking for the truth. Nam Myo Ho Rengge Kyo.

5-0 out of 5 stars An excellent endeavor
This book is one of three which attempt to outline the general history of Buddhism for the average reader. This history is of course very complicated and I think mr. Ikeda has done an excellent job of sorting outthe relevent and presenting it for our illumination. The insights intothe difficulties surmounted by those seeking to spread Buddhism areparticularly valuable and I would recomend this book to annyone regardlessof their level of education or religious affiliation.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Great History of Buddhism
This book, "The Flower of Chinese Buddhism," documents a crucial part of the history of Buddhism, as it makes its way across China.It is thanks to China that the great Indian-born philosophy we now know asBuddhism became a true world religion - eventually spreading to Korea andJapan and then to the West.

"The Flower of Chinese Buddhism"basically picks up where Daisaku Ikeda's earlier volume on the history ofBuddhism, "The Living Buddha," leaves off.Mr. Ikeda tells us ofthe great Buddhist translators and teachers of China, of the development ofnew schools of Buddhism, such as the T'ien-t'ai school, and the eventualdecay of Chinese Buddhism after persecution in the tenth century.

As astudent of Buddhism, I am indebted to Mr. Ikeda for his clear descriptionsof Kumarajiva's revolutionary achievements, such as his excellent versionof the sutras, including the Lotus Sutra, and various philosophicaltreatises that form the core of Eastern Buddhist literature.

Other greatChinese masters such as Hui-ssu and Chih-i are reviewed, making this anextremely concise and useful introduction to the T'ien-t'ai school ofBuddhism that later became very powerful in Japan - the birthplace ofNichiren Daishonin and the modern harbinger of his teachings, Soka GakkaiInternational.

"The Flower of Chinese Buddhism" is awell-written documentation of one of the most important chapters of worldreligious history and particularly of Buddhist history.

The greatBurton Watson, world-renowned translator/scholar of Chinese literature,including the Buddhist masterpiece "The Lotus Sutra," translatedthis outstanding documentary of the history of Buddhism in China. ... Read more

2. Japans New Buddhism :Soka Gakkai
by Kiyoaki Murata
 Hardcover: Pages (1971)

Asin: B000SHVLQ2
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

3. Buddhism: The First Millennium (Soka Gakkai History of Buddhism)
by Daisaku Ikeda
Paperback: 150 Pages (2009-06-01)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$8.75
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 097792453X
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Beginning with the events immediately following the dark days after the death of Shakyamuni and continuing over a period of 1,000 years, this dynamic tome covers a vast and complex series of events and developments in the history of Buddhism. Through a thorough examination of its early development in India, a new light is cast on little-known aspects of Buddhist history and its relevance to the understanding of Buddhism today. Topics include the formation of the Buddhist canon, the cultural exchange between the East and West, and the spirit of the Lotus Sutra.

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Customer Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars review
arrived promptly and as promised.was in excellent condition and well packaged.a thoroughly satisfactory transaction.five stars to the vendor and my thanks!

1-0 out of 5 stars Disastrous
If you are a member of SGI, ignore me and buy this book. It'll look great next to your 10,000 other books by Master Ikeda!

If you aren't, keep reading... this book is trash from start to finish. The reason it was written (ghostwritten, I should say) is because SGI members think Daisaku Ikeda must have perfect knowledge of all Buddhist history, so of course they had to start from the beginning, even though most Japanese Buddhists don't know anything about Early Buddhism. The result is a disaster zone cribbed from a half-dozen Japanese-language books listed at the end; no footnotes are used.

Here's an example of the ridiculousness: chapter 2 is entitled "The Theravada and the Mahasanghika". These two schools didn't even exist at the same time!! It is about the Second Buddhist Council, but it keeps on using the anachronism "Theravada" for Sthaviravada. The word in the original Japanese is "jouzabu", which can be either. I guess you could fault the translator for that, but look at this chestnut: the mark of the bodhisattva as decided in the 2nd century (87) is said to be "shakubuku". Oy vey... that's a 14th century Nichiren term, kids.

Look, just don't bother with this book. For a Mahayana look at Early Buddhism, read Light of Liberation: A History of Buddhism in India (Crystal Mirror Series, Vol. 8). You'll enjoy it a lot more.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very good overview of Nichiren Daishonin buddhism
This book is an excellent summary of the history of buddhism with a focus upon the practices of Nichiren Daishonin. Ikeda has a wonderful writing style with emphasis upon historical facts and schools of buddhism.

4-0 out of 5 stars Spreading the early dharma throughout Asia & beyond
A 1977 overview translated in 1982 (to be reprinted in August 2009), this welcome history summarizes early Buddhist attempts to formulate a canon, institute practices, and solve disputes. Ikeda constantly laments the tendency of monks towards argument, but he reminds us how, unlike most religions or ideologies, debates ensued rather thanfor those who refused to compromise or submit to authority. For, Buddhism departs from centralized, external rulers by encouraging the seeker to look within to find the same teaching that the historical Buddha insisted can be found that leads to freedom.

A freedom based more on interior realization rather than social revolution has unfairly caused Westerners to stereotype Buddhism as nihilistic, passive, and disengaged from life. While the monastic tendencies early on strove to control the dharma's compilation and interpretation as it passed from oral to written form, their understandable worry about the dilution of the original message did push much of the control over the dharma out of the reach of lay people. Ikeda, as a leader of Soka Gakkai, a Japanese movement determined to bring the dharma into everyday, non-clerical dissemination, seeks the same tolerance and respect within the Buddhists who, in the Mahasamghika and later the Mahayana version, followed their reformist zeal.

The saga reminded me often of how St Francis of Assisi late in his life struggled against those followers who bickered over how the Rule was to be practiced; analogies to the Reformation certainly also will emerge for readers studying the dogmatist vs. revisionist tensions that may have led to schisms, but at least bloodless ones rather than burning alive heretics. This lesson teaches us all!

Ikeda, speaking of Christian parallels, considers suggestive if largely unverifiable ones that show how the spread of Aramaic throughout the Persian empire may have allowed influences to travel from India to Palestine at the time of Jesus. Even if indirectly, common conclusions about lofty wisdom, "doctrinal breadth and depth, and this invariable rejection of class distinctions and narrow racial and national concepts" can "qualify Buddhism and Christianity as world religions." (75) As in the previous volume (also reviewed by me) "The Living Buddha: An Interpretative Biography" in this newly launched (2008-9) series, Ikeda in Burton Watson's efficient translation employs "religion" for the non-theistic philosophy of Buddhism, but this does correspond to common if not technically precise usage among Westerners.

With the stories of King Ashoka, great reformer and disseminator of the dharma to even the West within Alexander's heirs in Hellenistic Asia Minor, Ikeda makes a subtle argument. Those familiar with Soka Gakkai in its Japanese manifestation as not only a social movement but a political party may recognize what's alluded to only here. Ikeda uses Ashoka's example to show how a leader can embody the dharma while still allowing others within a polity to follow freedom of religion; the dharma's universality remains untainted by reform, rather it is perfected as people bring Buddhist ethics into the world beyond the monasteries.

Naganesa's dialogue with the Greek-rooted King Menander of Bactria, in the "Questions of King Milinda," shows the power of dialogue between Eastern wisdom and Western reason as standards by which we judge truth. (A recent comparison: see my review of Jean-Francois Revel & Matthieu Ricard's "The Monk & the Philosopher.") Still, the question of how "transmigration" differs from rebirth or reincarnation deserved more elucidation.

Another interpretative crux, raised in my review of Ikeda's Buddha biography, also enters this sequel. The Therevada version of Buddhism favored monasticism, inward direction, a negative view of what keeps the person from freedom, and a liking for the pattern of earlier Hinduism repeated in the "arhat," the realized-one who as a "voice-hearer" finds enlightenment, if of a lower level. The Mahayana encourage the outward direction, the goal of a bodhisattva that after being freed stays in future incarnations to help others towards "salvation" (another word taken in this translation that may need caution for a Westerner's understanding within Buddhism).

The move from the Therevada's negatively tinged escape from this life's snares into a Mahayana embrace of the possibility of perfection by not individual endurance and renunciation so much as collective advancement may reflect again Ikeda's perspective. The Japanese title, after all's, "My View of Buddhism." Actively overcoming obstacles, bettering society, and enacting suffering as a means to rid one's self of its drawbacks give Ikeda's view energy and impact. Later chapters may flag somewhat by comparison with the historical ones about the dharma's spread, but the sincerity with which Ikeda carefully sifts legend from fact, textual claims from enduring revelation in the Lotus Sutra, do reveal the passion and the clarity of his encounter with the roots of his practice.

The book's appended with a helpful glossary and throughly cross-referenced index. Nearly all of the sources, however, are documented only in Japanese; I'd have loved to be able to read some of these that suggest fascinating research about earlier East-West contacts. In the meantime, those of us lacking Japanese can learn about the often overlooked attempts to widen the message of Shakyamuni's dharma to Asia and even beyond, as gleaned from scraps of chronicles, recovered carvings, and massive heaps of textual compendiums.

1-0 out of 5 stars Create your own religion
This book is mis-titled. It is actually about a group of dissident monks who found it inconvenient to eat in only half the day, to wear only three garments, to be stopped from collecting gold in their bowls and from receiving the estates and permanent buildings of those laity who wished to bequeath them to them. These chaps seceded from the Buddha's path and ultimately created a body of commentary on the Buddha's teachings indicating the mistakes he had made and incidentally setting-up some untested people in replacement of the Buddha - that is the commentators who had detected the Buddha's errors - Vimalakirti, Nagarjuna, Vasubandhu and others.

This is a `how to' book. How to set up your own religion. It describes the steps. You start with a superman-type, say Gandhiji, who inevitably enjoys the respect of the entire planet and interpret his writings in the appropriate way, incidentally promoting the virtues of the interpreters. You can try this with John Denver or Diego Maradona, as has already been done (church of Elvis Presley the Divine). As a generalisation it may be that anyone who evokes an emotional response qualifies for God, promoters please note.

I must confirm what you already suspect. I venerate the Buddha; his achievement is a rare event in our species. I hope it is an evolutionary thing and enlightenment will become increasingly common but enlightenment cannot grow by natural selection :) - it has to continually renew itself with each generation. That takes a general improvement in education to achieve and we have made some progress in that respect. Look forward to more Buddha's in the future

I follow the Theravada, or as Mr Ikeda calls it, the hinayana, denoting the Buddha's achievement was of lesser consequence than that of the dissenting monks. I found that insistence irritating and it is unsubstantiated throughout the book. Mr Ikeda tends to make assertions repeatedly until the reader might suppose the assertion is actually established. When he does introduce a bit of real persuasion, that's it - one bit - and you are gambling the farm on it, but he's satisfied and I suppose you should be too.

The arguments are to my mind poorly made and seldom even slightly persuasive. Mr Ikeda's best argument is only hinted at, an inference from his main story - that the Buddha's path is difficult and demanding whilst the Mahayanist can offer his follower saints, heavens and women once he's dead. And he celebrates births, marriages and deaths, expels demons and changes the luck of anyone you like (or dislike). These are valuable services that keep people sane and happy. They're reasonably priced, in fact nothing is asked for them but things tend to get delayed if payment is not offered. That is the value of the Mahayana in society. Perhaps its enough.

In his conclusion, Ikeda says western psychology is studying Vasubanthu's alaya consciousness hypothesis. If that's true, we are in trouble. Its bad enough having astronomers inventing dark matter; we don't want the psychologists doing the same with non-existent states of consciousness. They will become as confused as the Mahayanists are. If you know the Buddha's insight, this book will be quite useful for you in honing the arguments that refute the absurdities of the Mahayana and you can do it one by one so its really persuasive, unlike Mr Ikeda.

This book was published donkey's years ago and I have only just got round to reading it although its been on the shelf a long time. I feel ashamed that my delay may have allowed more people to be confused by Mr Iekda. I have given Mr Ikeda one star as a review cannot be published without it. ... Read more

4. The Living Buddha: An Interpretive Biography (Soka Gakkai History of Buddhism)
by Daisaku Ikeda
Paperback: 150 Pages (2008-10-01)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$8.81
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0977924521
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

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An intimate portrayal of one of history's most important and obscure figures, the Buddha, this chronicle reveals him not as a mystic, but a warm and engaged human being that was very much the product of his turbulent times. This biographical account traces the path of Siddhartha Gautama as he walked away from the pleasure palace that had been his home and joined a growing force of wandering monks, ultimately making his way towards enlightenment beneath the bodhi tree, and spending the next 45 years sharing his insights along the banks of the Ganges. The Buddhist canon is expertly harvested to provide insight into the Buddha's inner life and to grant a better understanding of how he came to play his pivotal role as founder of one of the world's largest religions.
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Customer Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Concise, lively appraisal of the facts, the followers & the legends
In Japanese, the title's "My View of Shakyamuni." Ikeda, leader of the lay organization Soka Gakkai that stresses outreach, emphasizes how flexible Buddhism can be for our age. He cites Karl Jaspers on how in its origins, it emerged during what scholars call the Axial Age, when Socrates, Confucius, and later Jesus preached. Like them, the Buddha's messages weren't written down until later; like them, his teachings emerged from the "middle of the world" to spread to millions. (See Karen Armstrong's "Buddha" biography in the Penguin Lives series for more social and cross-cultural context.)

Sharing the dharma teaching's foremost; the intellectual understanding, Ikeda tells us, cannot replace action. He places the little factually that we know about the historical Shakyamuni, the sage of the Shakyas, within the legends and suppositions that, as with Socrates and Jesus, grew up around the teacher after his death. One key difference: the Eastern conception of emancipation comes not from an oppressive political system so much as a deceptive personal structure. (See Pankraj Mishra's "An End to Suffering" for more on this comparison and contrast within Western & Hindu intellectual history and philosophy.)

Ikeda admits he searches the scanty information we can verify, while allowing the myths also to enter his study, for from both we, as with Jesus and Socrates, have built our perceptions of such men, far more imaginatively and powerfully than a few facts recited could sway so many millions in centuries since. This narrative takes time to look at those who as "voice hearers" (shravaka) listened to the teachings and found enlightenment.

Here, a comparison with Stephen Batchelor's agnostic "Buddhism Without Beliefs" may be helpful. Batchelor wonders why in the original time of the Buddha's talks, many listeners earned enlightenment by hearing them, whereas now, many eons may be necessary for practitioners to find release. Ikeda appears to at first downplay "voice hearers" as a lower level within the Hindu "arhat" stages of enlightenment; while later he puts this stage at a somewhat higher stage (four out of ten?) for some of the first Buddhists. This issue remained somewhat confusing, although looking up information on Soka Gakkai in Donald Mitchell's excellent "Buddhism: An Introduction" from Oxford UP, the importance of ten stages for SG is emphasized as a key precept that may account for Ikeda's subtle downplaying of hearing teachings rather than making them actively part of one's life.

Ikeda, similarly, favors promoting a simpler "Law of Life" as a core dharma rather than a 12-linked chain of causation to elucidate the difficult doctrine of "dependent origination" that underlies karma and rebirth, issues that gain minor attention here compared to a more socially directed, accessible, and practical Buddhism that allows the strengths of all involved in the world's pursuits to gain from it, not only monks. He shows why monks were sent out to spread the dharma not in groups or pairs, but alone. Why? Ikeda muses that this example demands individual initiative, and a creative, positive, and flexible application of Buddhism to one's own experience in the world. This direction unsurprisingly finds Ikeda reminding readers that Buddhism expects personal responsibility, not blind devotion to leaders, fanatical asceticism, or misdirected yoga marathons or Zen meditation that become ends in themselves for egotistical comfort rather than means to enlightenment.

The dying Buddha reminded listeners to take charge of their improvement. The guide, unlike other "religions" (this term is used throughout Burton Watson's fluid translation despite possible confusion for Westerners; I am not sure what the Japanese equivalent term may have been), remains not focused on some external "absolute," but within the self, where one finds the way to conquer the ego and transcend the same self's delusions. Transformation by active habit, rather than information by passive reception, sums up the heart of dharma.

Ikeda throughout reminds us that the few facts of the Buddha that are in this short text expanded, with nods to scholarship and dissenting perspectives and historical situations, do not tell us much in themselves. The data may be scanty, but the insights prove profound. The "dignity of the individual and one's subjective nature" occupy central stage for the dharma as Ikeda interprets it. From within ourselves, we draw out the Law of Life. Practice makes us responsible, he finds, for our own liberation.

He ends this primer: "In other words, one transforms the present changeable self into the self as it should be, the self that is in perfect harmony with the Law"-- the essence of Buddhism's in this "human revolution" inherent within each of us. (133) The book's glossary and index cross-reference and translate terms concisely for newcomers to the Sanskrit vocabulary and Indian places; this along with Karen Armstrong's work may prove ideal for beginners curious about Siddhartha Gautama. While it moves more into those who followed the Buddha and less on doctrine.

(P.S. I've reviewed Armstrong, Batchelor, Mitchell, and Mishra's books on Amazon. Also see my review of Ikeda's follow-up, "Buddhism: The First Millennium," to be reprinted in the SG History of Buddhism series that this volume starts.)

5-0 out of 5 stars Comprehension beyond compare!!
As a practitioner of Nichiren Buddhism, and member of SGI-USA, I have found this book to be utterly enlightening, absolutely comprehensible, and totally fulfilling in way that makes Daisaku Ikeda's writings all the more valuable to me. His interpretation of the life of the original Buddha, Shakyamuni, has answered many lingering questions I've had on the fundamentals of Buddhist philosophy and I encourage anyone with an interest in Buddhism to read this book!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars The Living Buddha
Ikeda's biography of Shakyamuni Buddha made him very real. The reader is taken into the life and times of Shakyamuni, providing a rich history that kept me turning the pages for more. I have read this book twice and eachtime I enjoy it more than the last. Most important, Ikeda uses language andconcepts that Buddhists and non Buddhists alike can readily understand.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Down to Earth Rendering
This book is excellent ! The first in a series of three on the origin and history of Buddhism, it offers valuable insights from a unique perspective on the first man to reveal the Dharma and turn the Wheel of the ExcellentLaw. Dr. Ikedas' 'interpretive biography', approach is interesting andhonest in it's effort to aknowledge the difficulties of putting such a worktogether at such a great chronological remove, and I feel he has dealt withthese difficulties in a very useful way. I would reccomend this book toanyone seeking to acquire a knowledge of general Buddhist history, and evenmore so to those seeking to use this knowledge as the Buddha himselfintended; to improve their lives, and the world itself.

5-0 out of 5 stars Life of Buddha Brought Alive
Reading this book evokes the spirit of Shakyamuni as an enlightened person living in a troubled society who offers wisdom to humanity on how to overcome life's sufferings. The stories of his relationships with hisfollowers and the guidance he imparts to inspire them to live noble livestranscends any specific time or age. A wonderful book to pick up wheneveryou want to feel close to the Buddha within you. ... Read more

5. Nichiren Shoshu and Soka Gakkai - Modern Buddhism in Action
by Seikyo
 Paperback: Pages (1972)

Asin: B000KE3OPE
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6. Nichiren's Lions: A Global Journey through Soka Gakkai Buddhism
by Richard Hughes Seager
 Paperback: Pages (2006-01-01)

Asin: B002K7SRN8
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7. Soka Gakkai Dictionary of Buddhism
by English Buddhist Dictionary Committee
 Hardcover: Pages (2002)

Asin: B000WT8FN8
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

8. Japan's new Buddhism;: An objective account of Soka Gakkai,
by Kiyoaki Murata
 Hardcover: 194 Pages (1969)

Asin: B0006CF2NW
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9. The Soka Gakkai Dictionary on Buddhism
by Various
 Tankobon Hardcover: 979 Pages (2002)

Isbn: 4412012050
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10. Japan's New Buddhism: An Objective Account of Soka Gakkai
by Kiyoaki Murata
 Hardcover: Pages (1971)

Asin: B002JCUDZY
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11. The Soka Gakkai Dictionary on Buddhism
by Soka Gakkai
 Hardcover: 979 Pages (2002)

Isbn: 4412012050
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

12. The Liturgy of the Buddhism of Nichiren Daishonin
by Soka Gakkai International
 Paperback: Pages (1998)

Asin: B001OMT7MA
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13. The Liturgy of the Buddhism of Nichiren Daishonin
by Soka Gakkai
 Paperback: Pages (1995)

Asin: B00111AEG2
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14. The Liturgy of Nichiren Daishonin's Buddhism -
by Soka Gakkai -
 Paperback: Pages (2004)

Asin: B001J9UZRY
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15. Dictionary of Buddhism
by Soka Gakkai
 Hardcover: 1017 Pages (2008-09-30)
list price: US$92.00 -- used & new: US$46.85
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 8120833341
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Contains definitions for technical terms, historical figures, doctrinal texts, and institutions. ... Read more

16. The Liturgy of the Buddhism of Nichiren Daishonin
by Soka Gakkai International
 Paperback: Pages (1992)

Asin: B003B1A9OM
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17. Encountering the Dharma: Daisaku Ikeda, Soka Gakkai, and the Globalization of Buddhist Humanism
by Richard Hughes Seager
Paperback: 268 Pages (2006-03-16)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$10.79
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0520245776
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
This engaging, deeply personal book, illuminating the search for meaning in today's world, offers a rare insider's look at Soka Gakkai Buddhism, one of Japan's most influential and controversial religious movements, and one that is experiencing explosive growth around the world. Unique for its multiethnic make-up, Gakkai Buddhists can be found in more than 100 countries from Japan to Brazil to the United States and Germany. In Encountering the Dharma, Richard Seager, an American professor of religion trying to come to terms with the death of his wife, travels to Japan in search of the spirit of the Soka Gakkai. This book tells of his journey toward understanding in a compelling narrative woven out of his observations, reflections, and interviews, including several rare one-on-one meetings with Soka Gakkai president Daisaku Ikeda. Along the way, Seager also explores broad-ranging controversies arising from the Soka Gakkai's efforts to rebuild post-war Japan, its struggles with an ancient priesthood, and its motives for propagating Buddhism around the world. One turning point in his understanding comes as Ikeda and the Soka Gakkai strike an authentically Buddhist response to the events of September 11, 2001. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (15)

4-0 out of 5 stars A personal journey into one of Japan's largest lay orders
I bought "Encountering the Dharma" not knowing I'd just finished another of the author's books.If I had, I might have skipped it.And in doing so I would have missed a good story - in spite of not being the kind of bookI was expecting.While Seager introduces Soka Gakkai's theology, as well as some of the issues that have made the organization controversial in Japan, neither topic is covered in much detail.

After 17 years in Japan I feel somewhat ashamed of having learned little about one of the nation's largest religious organizations.I knew people in SG and to their credit their proselytizing was low key, consisting of nothing more than a few English language pamphlets.It seems American author/researcher Richard Hughes Seager knew about as much as I did.Maybe even less.At least I had lived in Japan, speak Japanese, met some SG members, knew about their political party, saw a few promo videos, and heard other Japanese speak about SG (most somewhat suspiciously).To his credit, Seager is forthright about his ignorance of Japan, which may just make you wonder about the value of a book about Soka Gakkai from a researcher on a Soka Gakkai grant.

Not having any particular agenda, Seager doesn't have any bones to pick or axes to grind.He has done the reader a great service in describing scenes and offering impressions that we might never have, short of several trips to Japan, the US, Singapore and Brazil, as well as access to much of SG's leadership.He records not only what he learns about SG, but how he learns - the situations, the people, his personal state of mind.It is very much a contemplative account of one reseacher's encounter with SG.And because this research was done shortly after the death of his wife, you can feel how open he is to questioning everything, especially himself.

One issue Seager raises midway through the text but never gets back to exploring is the organization's relevance to the 21st century.It seems that while the SG's great success has come from an ability to tap into the needs and concerns of the world's upwardly mobile middle class, it does so by offering a "soft-sell Buddhism." In the context of war-time and reconstruction Japan, a spirtual program rooted in nonviolence made radical sense.But as Seager observes, there's nothing too challenging (or even spiritual) about SG today."Who in the middle class, Japanese or American, is not for global peace, culture or education?"

One answer seems to lie in simply being Japanese.Where western culture has tended toward hyper-individuation, Japan is a modern nation that has maintained a strong commutarian culture.Perhaps what Soka Gakkai has most ably demonstrated is the exportablity of Japanese forms of social organization and consensus building.


4-0 out of 5 stars Something Is Missing
This is a much better book than I thought it would be.In fact, it's so well written and interesting it's hard to put down.My problem with it, however, is that while Professor Seager does a wonderful job of dealing with Soka Gakkai historically, theologically, organizationally and personally in an easily undertandable yet objective way, he leaves unanswered what I think is an important question about their actually practices.So, here it is:It seems clear that Soka Gakkai and President Ikeda do sincerely pursue peace in the world as one of the highest objectives.Yet, nowhere in the book, not anywhere else that I've seen, is there any evidence that Soka Gakkai is involved in peace demonstrations, peace groups or even issuing statements supporting specific actions that will lead to peace or, conversely, condemming actions leading to war.Frankly, it seems to me that while they've enshrined the objective of peace, other than talk about it and promote it amongst themselves and have leaders meet and have photo ops with leading political figures, they really don't do much of anything.

4-0 out of 5 stars A good start for people interested in the SGI - and skeptical
In his lack of objectivity, Professor Hughes Seager provides a unique perspective on the Nichiren Buddhism as practiced by the SGI. (I am a member.) Professor Seager interweaves his exact 'subjective' experiences in researching this book into his academic look at the SGI. He freely admits the SGI hired him to write the book and he frequently wonders if situations have been orchestrated to make sure he would see things in a positive light. Any reader can ask themselves the same questions; that's what makes it a particularly good book for anyone who is interested in the practice but also skeptical--and that probably covers everyone.

4-0 out of 5 stars An Engaging Narrative of the Advancement of Buddhism in Modern Times
From outside the SGI, Seager supplies historical context and validates Daisaku Ikeda's status as the leading interpreter of Buddhism in modern times. As Seager points out, Ikeda has made the practice of Nichiren Buddhism into a dominant force for advancing humanism in the world and made the religion accessible as a means to happiness and self-realization. I recommend it to anyone who wants additional information on the evolution of the Buddhist lay organization, Soka Gakkai International

5-0 out of 5 stars What a Great Book
As a member of the SGI, i learned a lot about our organization, from reading this book. This is a really good book to buy you wont regret it. I found it hard to put this book down, one of the best books i have ever read. ... Read more

18. How Soka Gakkai Became a Global Buddhist Movement: The Internationalization of a Japanese Religion
by Daniel A. Metraux
Hardcover: 139 Pages (2010-01-14)
list price: US$99.95 -- used & new: US$99.81
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Asin: 0773437584
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
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The Soka Gakkai is a massive Japan-based New Religious Movement based on the Buddhist teachings of the medieval Buddhist monk Nichiren. This work examines Soka Gakkai International chapters in Australia, Southeast Asia, Cambodia, the Philippines, and Quebec to determine why the movement has developed strong roots among people from widely divergent cultures. ... Read more

19. The Lotus and the Maple Leaf: The Soka Gakkai Buddhist Movement in Canada
by Daniel A. Metraux
 Hardcover: 160 Pages (1996-06-28)
list price: US$52.50 -- used & new: US$46.79
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0761802711
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
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The Soka Gakkai Buddhist movement in Japan has revived Buddhism in the lives of millions of Japanese, changed the course of Japanese government, brought creative new ideas to the field of education, and has impacted the worlds of art and culture. This movement is now gaining popularity in Canada. Why are so many Canadians now joining this movement? What is the appeal beyond the Canadian-Asian Community and how has this Buddhist sect managed to assimilate itself in a Christian society? This book seeks to answer those questions and more. It chronicles the rise of this branch of Japanese Buddhism in Canada and it studies the relationship between the parent group in Tokyo and its Canadian branch. ... Read more

20. Soka Gakkai: From Lay Movement to Religion (Studies in Contemporary Religions, 3)
by Karel Dobbelaere
Paperback: 112 Pages (2001-09-15)
list price: US$12.95 -- used & new: US$7.22
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1560851538
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

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In 1930 two men, Josei Toda and his mentor, Tsunesaburo Makiguchi, created the Educational Society for the Creation of Value (Soka Kyoiku Gakkai), with roots in Nichiren Buddhism. After World War II, It became Japan s fastest growing religion. Currently, membership is over ten million people worldwide. They recently opened their second university campus in California, and are active in the United Nations, among other peace organizations. ... Read more

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