Part 2: Human Revolution
Chapter 18: Buddhism Is a Teaching of Dialogue [18.10]
18.10 Confidently Sharing Our Convictions and Personal Experiences in Faith
At a meeting with youth training course participants from around the world, President Ikeda opened the floor for a question-and-answer session.
[In response to a member asking: “We are earnestly carrying out dialogue to introduce our friends to Buddhism. How should we respond to people who say, “I understand what you’re saying, but I do not want to join”?]
Prayer is the key. The important thing is to pray to the Gohonzon with steadfast determination. There is nothing more powerful than prayer.
This is not mere theory. Without prayer, all our efforts will ultimately get us nowhere. But when we wholeheartedly pray and talk to people, things will definitely begin to change.
Also, everyone’s timing is different. The time will someday come for that person to awaken to the correct teaching of Buddhism. If we pray for them, it will definitely happen.
We must not be impatient. Please show patience and forbearance. Patience is essential for victory.
And when people don’t respond the way we hope, aren’t they giving us a wonderful opportunity to chant lots of daimoku?!
The benefit is ours to enjoy. No effort that we make for kosen-rufu is ever wasted. There is no such thing as a “loss.” Soka Gakkai activities bring nothing but gain.
[In response to a request to share some points to bear in mind when telling other young people about the greatness of Nichiren Buddhism]
The important thing is to talk to them with sincerity. The person may be hearing about Buddhism for the first time. Therefore, it’s important that you are genuine and openhearted, speaking in an easy-to-understand way.
Talk to them confidently about the greatness of Buddhism and faith. Tell them about living a life of conviction. Explain to them how you have forged a life of value while enjoying proof of the power of your Buddhist practice and how you are advancing with courage and boundless hope for the future.
Ultimately, it all comes down to you proudly sharing your conviction and experience in faith. Doing so plants the seeds of happiness and hope in your friends’ lives. These seeds will undoubtedly take root, bud, and eventually flower. Until then, it is enough that you continue chanting and wait for that time to come.
Question-and-answer session at a world peace gongyo meeting, Tokyo, September 8, 2002.
The Wisdom for Creating Happiness and Peace brings together selections from President Ikeda’s works on key themes.