Talk:Soka Gakkai/Archive 7

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Perception of Intellectuals, Academia and Peace Movements

The Article’s section “Perception and Criticism” lacked any mention of how acknowledged Academia and Human Rights Movements perceive SGI.

The previously mentioned view of the United Nations lacked United Nations sources of reference, which I now included. Perception of SGI movement in society, schools and universities is now briefly mentioned. I say "briefly" because the list of contents and sources is relatively big. Only few from the academia including Nobel Prize Recipients - who shared activities and talks in SGI centers – are mentioned here as an indication.

There is a reason why I am stressing here on that 'only a few of a long list of the Academia' are mentioned. To explain further: I did not include support to SGI movement by Nelson Mandela, Rene Huygh (art historian), Aurelio Pecceci (Club of Rome), Bryan Wilson (Oxford sociologist), Johan Galtung (Norwegian peace activist), and twice recipient of Nobel Prize Linus Pauling, and others. This means that there is much "more than just ONE" example of related information.

If a certain perception of SGI is consistent and repeating (among many world figures) then an Encyclopedia would give it a credit.

But - in contrast - here in the same Section, we find an astonishingly obscure and rumor-based information expressed in the following sentence:

'There has been controversy about the degree of religious tolerance[72] and proselytizing[73][74] [75][76] practiced by some of Sōka Gakkai's members.[77]'

This sentence is based on unconfirmed or untruthful information and – literally – on rumors. Please judge for yourself: in a so called Reliable Source: http://riverdalepress.blogspot.de/2009/03/ps-24-parents-call-for-principals.html and in a tabloid fashion, it is mentioned that someone demanded resignation of an SGI teacher after “…weeks of rumors that he crossed the line between church and state with Buddhist prayer meetings”.

Wikipedia should not include fabricated information against anyone, such as this “rumor’. Nor it is a professional academic approach to put a plainly misleading information about 'religious intolerance' depending on ONE unreliable claim, a claim lacking elementary merit - and which was kicked out of court twice.

Let’s be open minded and impartial: any intelligent editor would agree that: if there is an element of truth (in that disputed sentence) - then there should be more than "just ONE shaky, fabrication-based" example- to mention as a “proof” of SGI “controversy”.

Lack of ANY true evidence (and using only ONE baseless information) does not qualify the sentence to be of any merit. It is not detrimental to SGI to have criticism. On the contrary: Aum cult, nationalist fanatics extremists and others - strongly criticised SGI and they have their right to expression. But it is supportive to Wikipedia to include baseless information relying on rumors (as self-admitted by the source providing that "information"). SafwanZabalawi (talk) 03:27, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

"Peace movements" is a very broad term. I would like a definition of peace movement. The Nichiren Shoshu, Nichiren Shu, and Kempon Hokke consider themselves peace movements, as do many religious organizations. Having "Peace" in an organizations description of itself, too doesn't necessarily mean that they are in fact a peace movement. Some peace movements are better judged by their actions than their words. Before I open myself up for censor, I would like an answer to this question. As the lay representative of the Kempon Hokke in the United States, an official representative, I have some things about the nature of the SGI "peace movement" that I would like to share with the readers. -- Mark Rogow — Preceding unsigned comment added by MarkRogow (talkcontribs) 04:20, 4 February 2013 (UTC)

2602:304:595F:78D9:3872:78C6:BEFE:9EC1 (talk) 05:56, 5 March 2013 (UTC)

Article Bias

This article seems to be deliberately steering clear of any subjects that could reflect poorly on Sōka Gakkai. If you look at the Japanese page, it lists various controversies surrounding the sect, including criminal activities, assaults on free speech, attempts of mind control, etc. By contrast, the "criticisms" section on the English page only includes positive information about the sect. At the moment, the partiality of this article is highly questionable, and at the very least it would benefit from significant inclusions from the Japanese article. Saifaa (talk) 21:04, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

Saifaa : in Encyclopedias (or academic work) the aim of text is to put facts supported by reliable references. It is not to put rumors or tabloid nonesense.
Guidelines for Wikipedia articles are not to -"steer away" from what you 'judge' as negative or "get closer" to positive. Honest presentation of information does not take sides or take a Japanese page as a 'reference'.
What you said about mind control and criminal activities is true for the Japanese extremists such as the terrorist Aum followers or some war criminals or religious fanatics - who have intersest in distorting the truth about SGI, and who said it openly. Do you have a Legal System in Japan? What you claimed about SG are serious matters that should be put before the court. But spreading rumors rather than applying to the Court is an evidence of failure. Regardless of one's emotionalism, in democracies you have obligation to respect the Legal System, and if the Legal System in Japan is not doing its job (towards the allegation mentioned in the Japanese article) then either the Legal System in Japan is corrupt or the Japanese article should be corrected.
If SGI is considered as a NGO at the United Nations then this is a fact. Honesty in presenting information should allow for mentioning such facts, inscluding support of many peace activists, Nobel Prize recipients, professors from hundreds of universities ...for peace activities of SGI. To dislike this, to close one's eyes and shut one's ears and deny such facts is just meaningless. Of course we should also mention criticism. The section about Perception and Criticism include criticism of SG for voting in politics, for following Nichiren teachings, for chanting for material benefits, for having a different interpretation of MentorDisciple etc.... but any allegation related to violating the Law must be also confronted by contra-allegation and by the decision of the Law against the violations. Wikipedia is not a vehicle for defamation, nor everything written in Japanese articles is meaningful.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:58, 6 January 2013 (UTC)

Agreed with Safwan. This article is not supposed to have an anti-SGI POV. It should be NPOV. As it stands, it is at least doing a half decent job at that. However, someone has been editing it to remove completely factual information about Jōsei Toda's reign which I sourced to several different academic publications. If he wants to remove this information again he should find a really good source refuting the academics. If it's in Japanese, I can read it. Shii (tock) 02:38, 16 January 2013 (UTC)

Would documented associations and partnerships, such as SGI's partnership with the Mitsubishi corporation, Japan's largest defense contractor, that put into question SGI's true committment to peace and non-violence, be acceptable to the editors? -- Mark Rogow 2/3/13 — Preceding unsigned comment added by MarkRogow (talkcontribs) 04:29, 4 February 2013 (UTC)

Uhhh, that just sounds like a plain smear attack to me. Shii (tock) 22:50, 12 February 2013 (UTC)
Well a sourced comment about such a partnership would be interesting. Drawing any conclusions about commitment to peace, however, risks being original research or synthesis. Mcewan (talk) 11:44, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

It is general knowledge that SGI and Mitsubishi are partners in the largest cemetary business in Japan. It is also general knowledge that Mitsubishi is Japan's largest defense contractor. Relaying factual information is hardly a plain smear tactic. Lying does not advance the cause of the Soka nation, or does it? -- Mark Rogow

About History

The ‘History’ section of the article is not up to the level of Encyclopedia. It is basically a POV, not an impartial presentation of facts. The text contains unreasonable statements such as that Makiguchi wanted to “commanded power over” Shoshu sect, or that Toda rode “a white horse ...to conquer religions ...” etc... It is only logical that when one writes about the foundation of an organisation, then the basic aims of that organisation and its basic concepts - should be mentioned. But this - and other important issues - are currently lacking.

In any intelligent presentation you should expect the:” one the other hand...” - but not in the current article. I think the History section should start from phases, such as Foundation, Development, Expansion ... etc while starting from names of individuals (unknown to many new readers) does not reflect a skillful presentation. The article is about an Organisation (and its history), not about names of particular individuals. I invite to sharing views. To improve the article, now the History section must be rasied to an academic level of honest presentation.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 09:50, 18 March 2013 (UTC)

There is no "on the other hand". What you have added citation needed temples to is established fact printed in books and journals by Oxford University Press, Stanford University Press and Nanzan University. If you find evidence disputing these facts, well first, it'd better be in equally reputable sources, and second, quote that evidence instead of just whining via improper use of templates. Shii (tock) 14:08, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
To all Editors: In order to improve the article, a broadminded approach is needed.
There are two issues here: /1/ the section about History is currently on the level of secondary school assignment, - not an encyclopedia. It is based on judgements, POV and also it contains false statements (such as an accusation that Makiguchi wanted to control a militant sect of Shoshu..!!)./2/ The History section does not inform about the history of the organisation, how it emerged, why, what aims etc.... To improve the section, I am inviting for cooperation of editors to arrive to a meaningful approach. I will present my suggestion soon.
Now few words for Shii: in encyclopedias, or academic work, impartial facts should have priority - not emotional judgements or POV. I will explain , so please consider this: Although I am not a Nichiren Shoshu follower, I disagree with your way of describing the sect as "militant". Wikipedia is not about influencing readers. To brainwash readers by inserting negative words (such as militant..) reveals an intention to discredit an opponent through negative names. This is too emotional approach to be accepted in Wikipedia.
Secondly, your deletion of requests for bringing concrete citations - contradicts Wikipedia's guidelines. Please support your claims you mentioned: what is the concrete sentence (and on what page of the published source). You kindly metioned that "books and journals" mentioned facts ....but where? What was the concrete sentence/ What page? Failure to bring concrete citations and page numbers this means that there is no truth in the presented allegation. Please respond by meaningful answer not by deletion of what you don't like. I will report the deletions as vandalism if this occurs again.
And thirdly, please accept that each coin has two sides. You say that "there is no on the other hand" -( in presenting facts) - but this approach cannot enable a balanced presentation of facts. I don't know what other editors think but I maintain that refusal to include other facts and perspectives - is disruptive and biased. I am sure you can cooperate in a sensible and balanced way, without denying others the right to challenge unreasonable information by asking for citations. also, please accept that each coin has two sides.
The History of the Soka Gakkai should include all historical facts, such as the oppression of the media, the opposition of the right wing militarists and also the conflict between the Soka gakkai and left wing communists - all these facts that are not shown in the current section. I invite all editors to consider cooperation in making the article rich, extensive and meaninful. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 22:57, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
You are responding to my request for opposing sources only to accuse me of bad faith in my citing of multiple academic sources. If you have other sources you would like to bring to the article, do so. Otherwise you are only wasting my time. Shii (tock) 03:20, 19 March 2013 (UTC)


Thank you, Shii very much for "allowing me" to bring reliable sources to the article, as you implied above. I did exactly that but you deleted my entery!
As you are aware, dialogue - or information exchange - takes time (sometimes long time). Improving the article requires exchange of information on this Talk page and in particular now on a serious matter: on deletion of entries without any valid reason. I want to learn from your perspective on editing Wikipedia, and as such: it is an important matter for all editors as well. I am requesting you now to explain on what basis you deleted my last entery (about Toda and publications). The source I took my quote from is a reliable source and it has been already used in the same section (History). The quote is valid and offers balanced references. It is only natural to have opposing views, Shii, and a professional approach requires courage to bring both to readers.
I have also reservations that the statement about alleged "restrictions" of publication to gakkai members - this is rather false. It is against WP policy to publish falkse statements.
There are of course other matters, which will be also brought up. Time before us is wide open, no hurries. Let's solve disputes one by one, starting now from your deletion of my entries without valid reason.
I have no problem in correcting myself and accepting the deletion if my entry contradicted any WP guidelines. Now the stage is yours to correct the matter and let's start by an explanation from you on why did you delete my entery. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 07:31, 19 March 2013 (UTC)
"I have also reservations that the statement about alleged "restrictions" of publication to gakkai members - this is rather false. " Prove it. I showed my proof, now you show yours.
"let's start by an explanation from you on why did you delete my entery. " Certainly. You wrote: "Toda made it possible for the whole public to access Nichiren teachings by publishing Gosho Zenshu : "For the first time in our 700 years history, the perfect collection of Nichiren daishonin's writings has been published by the Soka Gakkai.""
That is a non sequitur. Ikeda claimed in his book that Toda published "the perfect collection of Nichiren daishonin's writings". He didn't claim that Toda published that for anyone's eyes other than Soka Gakkai leadership. Your claim is not backed up by the source, so I deleted it. Shii (tock) 07:49, 19 March 2013 (UTC)

Violating WP Guidelines

I am in the process of raising the arbitrary editing of Shii, (see his/her last comment above) and requesting assistance from WP editors on how to stop his/her action of vandalism. One of the issues is a sentence of dispute - found on page 142 from the source 11 in the text (being Encountering the Dharma book). The book mentions that under Toda, Nichiren Gosho was published and taught in study calsses. Ishii did not like this sentence so he deleted it.

/1/ Upon asking Ishii (above) on why he/she deleted the sentence, the answer was that the publication of Gosho materials were only for "top leaders". This is a POV, and above that an unreasobnable claim by Shii, because "publication" by definition means making available for the public, and the gakkai books are all sold in stores, and available openly in libraries etc...

/2/ Ishii's own interpretations (of the History of SG) is lacking logic. For example ishii thinks that : "Makiguchi insisted, against the will of Shōshū leadership, that Shōshū teachings were ultimate truth.." - implying that Shoshu did not believe that their teachings are true!!! There are various other inconsistencies. This level of editing makes the article below the level of even primary school assignment.

I will revist the whole section and improve the presentation of History in an academicly written form.

/3/ It is also to be noted that Ishii does not respect requests for indicating the citation from where he/she made enteries, and delets [citation needed] requests without answering the challemge.

I request WP Editor(s) for assistance as impartial observers in the disputed matters which Ishii is unreasonably introducing to WP page. 01:38, 20 March 2013 (UTC)

1. "the gakkai books are all sold in stores, and available openly in libraries" Were they in 1959? My academic source says no. "This level of editing makes the article below the level of even primary school assignment. " Stop making accusations, and prove your claims!
2. "implying that Shoshu did not believe that their teachings are true!!!" It's right there in the citation! It's an English-language, open-access citation! It's literally three clicks away from your nose!
3. " Ishii does not respect requests for indicating the citation" This is a lie and the edit history shows it. I even responded to your ridiculous request to add citations to the middle of sentences. Shii (tock) 02:01, 20 March 2013 (UTC)


No, Ishii, you seem not to understand that the word Publish means Publish for the Public. Implying that Toda published the Gosho only for "top leaders" is not mentioned anywhere.
The section on History requires improvement and again I request you to consider cooperation and stopping deletion of what you do not like - as you interpret sentences through your own POV.
This is not the only problem you are introducing to the article, and i will request an impartial observer on how to deal with these issues. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 02:28, 20 March 2013 (UTC)
"No, Ishii, you seem not to understand that the word Publish means Publish for the Public." You've never heard of a private publication? It's incredibly common.
" Implying that Toda published the Gosho only for "top leaders" is not mentioned anywhere. " It appears in the citation I gave which you have repeatedly ignored.
Time and time again, I have asked you to back up your claims, and instead you just attack my character and lie about me. If you think anything I have written is POV, PROVE IT. Shii (tock) 02:43, 20 March 2013 (UTC)


It seems that dialogue and informed exchange of information is not working here, Ishii. The whole section about History in this article is in dispute. The dispute is not about personal matters Ishii, as I have invited you to cooperate and share a meaningful dialogue. I have respect to you Ishii as a human being. Please don't take anything personally against you, and accept that we all make mistakes. One of your mistakes was your abrupt refusal to accept that: in every intelligent matter you here the words " on the other hand..." and your statement " No, there is no on the other hand" is simply one sided, biased and lacking academic substance.
The latest addition you made in the text was about a story that in 1943 - 'someone said something' about an alleged 'divine punishment', which worried the military authorities of the time - and follwoing that: the organisation was banned and Makiguchi was charged etc... This way of enforcing implications is not consistent with WP guidelines. Please accept that we share this cyber-space and we have to abide by its rules and show respect to the truth.
The article's section 'History' is very messy and its level is below any academic standard. I am going to rework the section. Please be patient, it takes time and efforts. If you have different views you are welcome to discuss them here and I also suggest that you request assitance from WP editors, which I already applied for. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 10:57, 20 March 2013 (UTC)
"This way of enforcing implications is not consistent with WP guidelines." I have no idea what you are talking about. Shii (tock) 11:01, 20 March 2013 (UTC)

Harmful Tendencies for WP

I receive your abovementioned answer, Shii, saying that you “have no idea..” - as an invitation for me to explain.

Thank you for letting me show you some of your mistakes. The first of your mistakes is your statement that “there is no ‘on the other hand’ ” in regard to presenting information. This is against the freedom of expression and against WP Guidelines. WP is not your private property. You haven’t retracted yet your statement of refusal to have the “on the other hand” statements presented to readers from both or variety of perspectives This is a "back to the Middle Ages" tendency of suppression and fear of openness in presenting all perspectives. And it is a serious incident: an incident of one editor voicing restrictions (one-sided vision) on another editor in regard to presenting information. This is a serious matter of general nature: a matter concerning attitude of editors towards others - and it concerns not only me, but all others. It is still unresolved.

There are various issues with your editing of History section. But i’ll focus on 3 points.


/1/ This article is not about Nichiren Shoshu sect. But the text introduces Makiguchi and Toda as essentially being believers in a “militant” sect. This is a brain-washing tendency to mislead readers about SGI Founders from the start. It is a "whisper" to readers that the origin of the SG is beliefof its founders in a militant thinking sect. Who is ‘militant’ is a POV, Shii. Some argue that the Shinto are the "militant" in a war that destroyed Japan and millions of families in many countries. Who can possibly deny it?


/2/ You have given yourself the right to delete editing without valid reason. You deleted the following:

"Toda made it possible for the whole public to access Nichiren teachings by publishing Gosho Zenshu : "For the first time in our 700 years history, the perfect collection of Nichiren daishonin's writings has been published by the Soka Gakkai.""

To justify this vandalism, you mentioned that you think that the publication of Gosho was only for “top leaders”. You “assume” that “publishing” is not for the public - and assume that it was for “top leaders”. WP does not accept this level of self-satisfied assumption in editing and defying commonsense in deforming the word "publish' .

That was just one part of vandalism, bcause additionally you deleted this : " Nichiren Gosho and the ten worlds are central to Gakkai philosophy which is still taught in graded classes first developed in Japan in the '50s under Toda.[9]. This statement is from a source which was already used in the text, and you delete it just because it does not fit with your definition that “ publishing was not for all people”. Proof to WP Editors: the deleted text is found in old revision of this page, as edited by SafwanZabalawi (talk | contribs) at 23:43, 18 March 2013


/3/ In a History of over 20 years of struggle of Soka Kyoiku Gakkai - you mentioned just one alleged story of interpreting someone’s death as being of “divine punishment”. This is a proof of the poverty of the text and its low academic quality overlooking remarkable achievements of introducing women (who were considered as second category creatures by the oppressive society)- to educational meetings, and of publishing philosophical works and principles of education (some are taught in Universities now), and others activities. But that questionable story (about the ‘divine punishment’) was immediately followed in your text by : arresting Makiguchi. The implication of possible link between the story and the arrest - this false implication was insetrted in the text. I will work to clarify the truth and in time, I will publish on WP an image of the official charges against Makiguchi and his words of opposition to Emperor worship during interrogation.

It is accepted world wide that academic honesty requires clarity, non-bias and respect for the right of others to present a balanced and mature text. I honestly believe that WP a property of all ordinary people who expect its text to be mature, non-biased and meaningful. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 10:52, 21 March 2013 (UTC)

"You haven’t retracted yet your statement of refusal to have the “on the other hand” statements presented to readers from both or variety of perspectives" There is nothing to retract. I presented the facts. Not "one side of the story", the actual facts as found in reliable sources. The offer remains for you to find equally reliable sources disputing anything I have written. I will not allow you, however, to attempt to cast reliable sources as rumormongers, and contrast them with unreliable sources "offering another perspective". That's not how WP works.
1) "This article is not about Nichiren Shoshu sect." What do you think Soka Gakkai is?
"Who is ‘militant’ is a POV, Shii." No it's not. It's found in multiple reliable sources. "Militant" is an NPOV statement, and anyone with their head screwed on can see that.
2) "WP does not accept this level of self-satisfied assumption in editing and defying commonsense in deforming the word "publish' . " At this point there is nothing to argue with you about. You are trying to exaggerate Ikeda's rather lukewarm statement that "documents have been published" into a grandiose claim that can stand against a reference from a journal from Nanzan University. You have not found anything worthy of being put in the article.
I didn't delete the second sentence as you claim. It is still there in the article now. Go look at it yourself.
3) "This is a proof of the poverty of the text" No, it is "proof" of nothing. YOUR POV is that several reliable, academic sources are biased against Soka Gakkai. You must find evidence of that. The burden of proof lies on you, not me. Shii (tock) 12:57, 21 March 2013 (UTC)

3O

Searchtool-80%.png Response to third opinion request ( ):
In this complex matter, it is hard to offer a 3rd opinion on the specifics. It would help if you could ask about 1 very specific issue at a time - for example, "Should X change to Y or not (for z reasons, see r references). If you can pose a question in that format, people could offer a 3rd opinion. It may need you to ask several times; that's fine. Please, ask one thing at once, otherwise we can't cope :-)

If we can discuss one specific issue, and sort that out - we could move on to the next.

I will remove the 3O request for now; please, add a more specific request if it'll help resolve things. Thanks. 88.104.27.2 (talk) 22:15, 22 March 2013 (UTC)


Thank you for your resonse and explanation. Out of good faith, I have presented a variety of issues to the editor Shii to consider. I suggested dialogue, exchange and cooperation to resolve disputed matters in the text (History section). The result was negative, the least to say.
Among a list of various issues, I will now focus just on one matter.
I consider Shii's deletion of two quotes I entered to the text on 18 March as a deliberate act of vandalism, refusing correction of his action.
Shii openly dictates a new guideline in editing, namely rejection of introducing other than his - perspectives (or quotes) on a given matter.

SafwanZabalawi (talk) 09:35, 23 March 2013 (UTC)

<moved the rest to the section below>

Hi, SafwanZabalawi. To try and make things clearer, please forgive me splitting the rest of your message into a new section below - where I hope it can be discussed. I note your comments about 'vandalism' but please, let's move forwards and discuss the content, not the person. You think those 2 quotes should be included. Let's see if the other user (or anyone else) can give reasons for not including the quote.

I hope that you don't mind me structuring the discussion this way; I think it's more likely to get resolution.

I'd give it several days; preferably a week. If nobody objects, add the quotes. That way, if they're removed again, you could just revert and refer to the discussion.

If it's disputed, feel free to poke 3O again. 88.104.27.2 (talk) 21:16, 23 March 2013 (UTC)

Two quotations

The subject was about Toda making publications of books available to members. On 18 March I entered the following:

"Toda made it possible for the whole public to access Nichiren teachings by publishing Gosho Zenshu : "For the first time in our 700 years history, the perfect collection of Nichiren daishonin's writings has been published by the Soka Gakkai."[8]. and: " Nichiren Gosho and the ten worlds are central to Gakkai philosophy which is still taught in graded classes first developed in Japan in the '50s under Toda.[9].

8. ^ The Human Revolution, book 1, vol 6 page 723, World Tribune Press, ISBN 0-915678-77-2

9. ^ Encountering the Dharma, Richard Hughes Seager, page 142, University of California Press, ISBN 978-0-520-24577-8

There was no reason to delete these relevant and verifiable quotes - other than vandalism. I have refrained from using this word (of vandalism) for many days continually inviting Shii to respect WP guildelines and retract his unjustified action, but he/she refused. I request a third party's opinion on whether I have the right to include the above mentioned quotes or not. Regards. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 09:35, 23 March 2013 (UTC)

Any other users, please explain below if you think these two quotations should, or should not, be included - and why. Thanks, 88.104.27.2 (talk) 21:16, 23 March 2013 (UTC)


off topic
The real question here is about WP Guidelines in regard to Deletion. Let's be clear of what we are discussing:
In order to present the contents of a certain source, editor can make "citation" - summerizing the source's opinion - or also can give direct 'quotation" of the source on the subject.
Citation may be presented by the editor involved to include editor's personal interpretation (of what the source said). This turnes the citation into a POV, and into something which was not truly mentioned in the cited source.
On the other hand, bringing true quotes - impartially - clarifies the perspective of the source without adding own interpretation, POV etc...
The subject in the text was about Toda's publications - and the two quotes were exactly about that subject, precise and clear. The problem emerged not from the contents of the quotes - but from rejection of including other views, quotes or sources into the text.
I am determined to resolve this matter of dispute on how WP works. The firt stage is to discuss it here. Again I am focusing on WP Guidelines.
The problem here originated from the editor involved rejection of balanced views. This makes WP article a propaganda platform for one view only deleting others contribution. I said that in every intelligent discussion you have other views presented, not just one single interpretation. This was openly rejected by the editor involved, and this is the origin of the problem: rejection of balanced and mature editing.
I maintain my right under WP to introduce information from diversity of reliable sources, not just one, and I will rework the text (of the related section in the article) to be more indepth, informative and balanced. WP is not a platform for propaganda, but presentation of variety of sources. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 23:30, 23 March 2013 (UTC)
Let's be clear of what we are discussing - we are discussing whether or not those 2 quotations should be included. That is all.
Just saying "support" would have been fine. You think these 2 quotes should be added, right? OK. If we can get consensus, we can add them. Then we can discuss whether something else should be added or not. 88.104.27.2 (talk) 23:57, 23 March 2013 (UTC)
Before discussing anything, knowledge about WP Guidelines should be demonstrated. The subject here is about principles in editing, deletion etc...
Editing requires impartiality, it requires academic honesty, it requires other sources (and views on the same subject) to be mentioned. This is the backround on which the discussion is focused. In general, if subject {A} generates opposing views, then both views should be mentioned, there should be no fear and rejection of other views.
Encyclopedias are not written by "consensus", but by refrences to verifiable sources. In some Yahoo discussion groups, yes, true, subjects are taken by consensus. Any presentation of the subject at hand here as a conflict about the 'contents' is a misunderstanding, because in encyclopedias and academic work, quotes are not included upon agreement of observers or their private opinion about the subject.
I welcome discussion on this subject of : 'Should editing include variety of perspectives on the same subject or it should represent one view only. This Talk page directly reveals one's level of understanding of the meaning of Encyclopedia - as different from a discussion club (about: hej guys, let's vote: how many readers like or dislike quotes). If it is not clear for someone what are WP guidelines which the subject is related to, then it will take sometime to make a shift to agree that: already established guidelines are the solid ground for discussion. Otherwise, Yahoo groups are available for voting (on accepting a quote or not liking to accept it). SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:49, 24 March 2013 (UTC)
One question: do you think those 2 quotations should be included, yes or no? Why? That's all, for now. 88.104.27.2 (talk) 01:12, 24 March 2013 (UTC)
Please answer your own question above by yourself - in line with WP guidelines. I'm sure you have the capacity, but you need some efforts to find out. That' all. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 05:37, 24 March 2013 (UTC)

This is getting ridiculous. I already answered Safwan's questions to the extent any reasonable person would need about two pages above here. I have an academic source saying A, he has a religious source saying A-prime; it's not a contradiction of A and is from a weaker source, so I deleted it as a waste of space. Since then he's just been spouting nonsense. I don't enjoy wasting my time coddling cranks. Shii (tock) 12:32, 24 March 2013 (UTC)

Hi 88, you asked me to clarify this statement but honestly it doesn't matter to me that much. Adding an unrelated non sequitur to the end of a paragraph only degrades the article a little. What's more important is that Safwan has been ominously saying for over a week that he's going to replace my History section, which took a while to research, with something else. This is what's really annoying me. Shii (tock) 23:04, 24 March 2013 (UTC)
OK, thank you.
I'd be quite happy to try and resolve that other issue (about 'history'), or someone else could - but my experience tells me, the best way to deal with disagreements about content, is one-at-a-time. That's why I'm so insistent on trying to discuss one very specific thing in this section - because, if we discuss one specific thing, there's a fair chance of coming to a consensus/agreement.
Thanks for explaining why you don't think the quotes belong. I'll try to get a couple more opinions, which often helps. 88.104.27.2 (talk) 23:47, 24 March 2013 (UTC)
off topic
No, Shii, you got it wrong. WP is not your private property. The section of History does not 'belong' to you. To regard other editors improvement to the style and information of the text as to "replace my History section" - this is a mistaken perspective. Please refresh your concept about what an Encyclopedia is. If you want to be humble, you can mention about a section you 'shared' in editing, not to a text which is almost your private property! Please open up to a world of sharing information - in the most cooperative and developed way.
The current History section does not inform readers of anything meaningful about the subject. It is a confused and messy text based on emotional orientation and onesided vision. It is based on arbitrary interpretations (claiming that the source said so and so, without concrete proof).
So, as such, there is no way to discuss issues one at a time: we are not in "negotiation" about history. In WP practice, editors honestly present what reliable sources inform us. That's all. Any objection about a source or a quote should be raised to WP - before deletion.
I am working to make the text more systematic, clear,informative rich - based on reliable sources. And, Ok, never mind the 2 Quotation here. In the future text there will be lot of quotations from reliable sources. Honesty in academic research requires impartiality and balance. It takes time to develop a meaningful outcome.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:27, 25 March 2013 (UTC)
I agree with you about all the principles of writing an article. There is no need to explain that articles can be improved every time you talk to me. The problem is that everything on the page right now is a true, well-sourced fact; and you continually slander my research as "arbitrary interpretations" without ever explaining how this could possibly be so. Shii (tock) 01:19, 25 March 2013 (UTC)

This whole section of 'TWO QUOTATIONS' was formulated by an unknown editor - in a way which was off topic.

The unknown editor used my words at the start of the section here, but then shifted the subject to an invalid discussion and unnecessary clogging of this page.

Nevertheless Shii asked (in its last entry) a valid question. The question asked was not off topic.

It was a question about what do I mean by improving the article. I will answer it in the last section on this current page.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 23:59, 25 March 2013 (UTC)

Proofs of Vandalism and Bias

First, I am inviting you, Shii, to a mature and intelligent talk to improve the article. You can present your view without shouting: “YOUR POV is that several”... – Capital letters and bold characters are forms of expressing excessive engagement or even emotionalism, and there is no need for that. Please consider that the subject here is the article. It is not what you 'think that I think’. When you define my point of view as so and so..., you are putting only your imagination into this Talk page.


/a/ I’m not disputing the “reliable sources” you mentioned at all. I’m questioning your understanding of what was written in the sources you mention. I want to verify the truth in what the text attributes to the source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Verifiability

For example, you interpreted Toda’s publishing of books as publishing for 'Top Leaders' only, saying (in a previous talk) that “It appears in the citation I gave which you have repeatedly ignored”. But what you call “citation” is incorrect. Editing does not mean inserting imagined interpretation. You failed to support your claim (that publishing was only for top leaders) by any precise quote.


Another proof of your vandalism is the following: deleting also the following quote simply because you don’t like it:

" Nichiren Gosho and the ten worlds are central to Gakkai philosophy which is still taught in graded classes first developed in Japan in the '50s under Toda”. This quote does not appear in the article now, why?

The 2 quotes I am here referring to are from reliable sources (and already used in the article) but both quotes were unreasonably deleted. Academic honesty requires to impartially acknowledge presented quotes. You are openly violating WP rules.


/b/ Encyclopedia is different from story-telling allegation. For ex. you bring a story that: In 1943, a Tokyo member of the Soka Kyoiku Gakkai reportedly told a non-member that his daughter had died as punishment for not converting to Nichiren Shoshu. Well, even assuming that this occurred, it has no bearing on the whole organisation - and generalizing its background on all SKG and leadership is a fallacy, and it is called a Fallacy of Sweeping Generalization: http://www.iep.utm.edu/fallacy/


/c/ Again, I had to remind you that “This article is not about Nichiren Shoshu sect." however your answer was: “What do you think Soka Gakkai is?” If you fail to understand the difference between the two, you fail to be qualified to edit this article. In fact your editing is lacking even commonsense, look at this:

“Makiguchi insisted, against the will of Shōshū leadership, that Shōshū teachings were ultimate truth” – so you are saying that Shoshu priests did not believe that their own teachings represent ultimate truth, and did not want Makiguchi to say that Shoshu teachings are ultimate truth but he "insisted"! What a nonsense you are bringing to Wikipedia article! And who cares what Shoshu priests said or did not, this article is not about Shoshu. Makiguchi was not arrested because he was a Shoshu believer, and bringing Shoshu here to the reader of the WP article is putting confusion and nonsense on WP article.

As for what Makiguchi truly said I will quote later from the record of interrogation. The official charges of the military police against him will be image published to clarify the truth.

Thank you for an enjoyable exercise through which I can develop a wider capacity and I invite you to cooperate to improve the article with factual information.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 03:39, 22 March 2013 (UTC)

It seems you think I am interpreting the sources wrong. I am intrigued to learn what you think these sources say, especially since you still show no sign of having read them. Shii (tock) 08:47, 22 March 2013 (UTC)

Regarding your non sequitur of the fallacy of sweeping generalizations, the Bible of Shakubuku edited by Daisaku Ikeda was published for the "benefit" of the entire membership. It makes many assertions of the punishment of those who practice a faith other than the Nichiren Shoshu Soka Gakkai, ie: "The family which believes in the so-called Nichiren-shu will have children who have deformities, mental retardation or madness."(page 321, The Bible of Shakubuku). This was a core teaching of the Soka Gakkai from at least the early 1950s and probably from its inception. It was a core teaching of the Soka Gakkai, not an isolated teaching of one renegade SGI member. Mark Rogow 04/21/13 — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:306:CC5C:D6C9:792A:B601:F773:CBFD (talk) 00:06, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

Improving the article

Thank you Shii for referring to what do I mean by improving the article. I have respect to you and to your work. You'd agree though that neither you nor myself - is the "ultimate perfect" editor in the world. We share information that we find in sources, and we can expand our mind.

There are many elements which contribute to the History of anything. The History of the SG was never determined by Nichiren Shoshu, therefore the focus is not Shoshu. They have their page. You may say that a relationship between the two existed, OK - but that was not the determining element in SG history - and evidently the two are quiet separate (even that some – but not all - doctrinal teachings are common).

If the History section does not reflect this fact, then it is not the History section of the subject article.

One of the utterly confusing for reader - information was that Makiguchi insisted that Shoshu beliefs are the truth ‘despite Shoshu disagreeing with him’ !!! This is just unreasonable and confusing, and it is after all irrelevant. It is not true that Makiguchi was arrested because of his beliefs in Shoshu. What Makiguchi said during interrogation must be focused on the charges (basically of rejection of Emperor worship), not Shoshu’s views about his views…etc.

Another thing. Of about 3000 SKG member in 1943 you mentioned that one member told a non member that ‘divine punishment’ happens! Any academic work generalizing this questionable info to portray similarly thousands of others – any student’s editing would be dismissed as propaganda weakening the article. I have disagreement about these two entries in your editing – they make the quality of the text messy, confused and biased. Readers need clarity and general flow of historical events, not tabloid confusing presentation.

How to arrive to the best editing? If we tell readers that someone said something – and give a source as a reference, then the question arises: How accurate is our interpretation to what someone said. To be impartial and honestly bring the correct information, the best way is to present traceable quotes – not disputed interpretation. My coming up editing will focus on quotes from reliable sources, not my interpretation.

Lastly, Shii, please understand that History (of any organization) flows in Phases (not in persons). History is not about Makiguchi Toda Ikeda. We are here about history of an organization, which went into 3 stages of Foundation (pre war), Development (post war), and finally expansion (Ikeda’s phase). Of course we still mention the 3 founders but in their time-phases. I think you agree on this clear and meaningful presentation of History.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 02:46, 26 March 2013 (UTC)

Okay, thank you for finally outlining your specific complaints! Great! Here is what I think about the article and why I gave it the form I did.
1. Soka Gakkai's own self-written history is in the form of "the eras of Makiguchi, Toda, and Ikeda". I don't think that is a controversial choice. I don't have an issue with changing the headings, and Ikeda's period needs more than one section, but these three leaders had a very strong impact on the structure of the organization, so let's not leave out characterizations of their leadership. Actually, one of the articles I read suggests the three leaders all had absolute authority over Soka Gakkai.
2. "It is not true that Makiguchi was arrested because of his beliefs in Shoshu." I disagree. Shoshu leaders told him multiple times to go with the flow and accept the rulings of the government. He rejected their advice. I provided a citation for this.
"What Makiguchi said during interrogation" ... is irrelevant in my view. Soka Gakkai leaders had confrontations with Shoshu leaders, non-members, and police. These confrontations are the most important part of Soka Gakkai's prewar history because they demonstrate the nature of the organization. As you said above, we are not writing a biography of Makiguchi in this article.
3. "Of about 3000 SKG member in 1943 you mentioned that one member told a non member that ‘divine punishment’ happens! Any academic work generalizing this questionable info to portray similarly thousands of others" That's not what I'm doing. As I just said above, SKG's prewar history is about these confrontations. As the source I am citing says (please read it) the police investigation began because of that "divine punishment" incident. This is a crucial moment in the formation of SKG, not in my opinion, but in the opinion of several sources.
4. "You may say that a relationship between the two existed, OK - but that was not the determining element in SG history - and evidently the two are quiet separate (even that some – but not all - doctrinal teachings are common)." Your view is mistaken. SKG was doctrinally subordinate to Shoshu until they split. I don't see how you could even dispute this. Certainly Shoshu's internal politics don't come into this article, and the Doctrine sections need not talk about modern Shoshu, but SKG's relationship with Shoshu is very much relevant to the article. Shii (tock) 03:04, 27 March 2013 (UTC)


You are right, Shii when you say that it “ is irrelevant in my view”, [what Makiguchi said during interrogation]. As you mentioned, your private view regarding the truth about his interrogation is simply “irrelevant”. But WP is not a record of your views.


Now again, about Makiguchi - you say that : “Shoshu leaders told him multiple times to go with the flow and accept the rulings of the government. He rejected their advice” – So you admit here that Makiguchi was not arrested because he agreed with Shoshu’s advice. He was not arrested because he represented Shoshu’s views, which he rejected. So why stuff the text with nonsese about Shoshu and their views? The reason for his arrest and the charges will be published as undeniable facts. And the interpretation of the source (you claim your views from)- is confused. Bring an exact quote of what you read - and not your personal interpretation. Quoting may make the text a bit longer- but truthfulness and clarity will be maintained.
I am asking you Shii to be honest in referring to what a source says.
WP editing is against including false information in the text. Here, I am referring now to this sentence about Toda:

“In 1952, the Justice Department intervened in the most severe cases, forcing Toda to end the use of assault and violence during shakubuku.[18]”

The book you refer to costs lot of money for me to obtain, so I had to make a search in local Libraries and Universities to find a copy of it. And I found it. But on the page you claim the information is taken from - there was absolutely no mention of any cases, whether “severe” or not. There was absolutely no mention of any complaint about violence, and the word "assault" is your invention, it does not appear in the source you mentioned at all. You are defeating yourself by including misleading flamable words and inventing repulsive words to assign them to Toda, who was never accused of any case of violence. You are saying that the Japanese Legal System interfered in “most severe cases” - and this is not true, there were no cases and no mention of assault, words that you are falsely bringing to the text.


Now as for shakubuku, the meaning of this word must be defined not by opponents of Nichiren Buddhism but by Nichiren himself who used it. It is a requirement of academic honesty to impartially present the original meaning of the word, and not one-sided wrong interpretation. There are plenty of other matters in this messy text, and I will keep on efforts to have a balanced and truthful editing even it this requires years of work, it is enjoyable to present the truth - and I have time.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 05:50, 27 March 2013 (UTC)
"And the interpretation of the source (you claim your views from)- is confused. Bring an exact quote of what you read - and not your personal interpretation." We can't make every reference a direct quote; that's plagiarism. Again, if you think I've summarized the sources incorrectly, prove it.
[Earlier comment removed.] I see how my own citing is lazy with the Justice Department quote. I think I have fixed the references and the quote, so take a look. Shii (tock) 07:03, 27 March 2013 (UTC)
Every single entry in the History section will be examined and if no prove of its validity – then it will be deleted. You should not fear quotes, Shii. And you are wrong by saying that quoting someone is plagiarism.
Please find out the difference between plagiarism - and quoting a source. If you do not know the difference then you are not qualified to edit anything.
There is a difference between honest quoting and making stories. You were putting falsehood into authors mouth (about things they never said). Again you are introducing false wording by saying that The Justice Department "forced" Toda...., your editing is not trustworthy and it will be corrected. You have earlier added false information that there were "severe cases" while the source did not say so. WP is not a place for imagination and lies. The list of nonsensical interpretation in your text is big and will be replaced by precise quotes.
In an academic text, you do not insert your own imagination and then ask others to "prove it". Thruthful editor correctly brings quotes (about certain events) and introduces the views of various sides, not just one. This is what is going to take place. Your excuse that your citation is lazy: "I see how my own citing is lazy with the Justice Department..." is a prove of your inability to edit.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:53, 28 March 2013 (UTC)

Improving the History Section

It is obvious that 'History' of any organisation starts with its inception or Foundation phase, then its Development in time and also further stages. Following this presentation, for the purpose of clarity, I renamed the phases of History section (not by names of individuals) but by the historical stages of the organisation (keeping the individula's names and photos as they are).

In academic presentation it is important to exclude emotionalism and personal accusative views. For example describing Nichiren Shoshu as “militant” is a judgement - while the proper and correct designation is “orthodox” sect of Nichiren Buddhism. The word ‘Orthodox’ is derived from the Japanese name itself and is not an external or personal judgement. POV are not allowed in WP articles. For clarifying, I would like here to focus more on this subject to exclude any tendency of name-calling or judgements by editors. The reason is that this matter (of calling someone militant) was raised on this Talk page but without agreement of editors (to use impartial descriptions) - let me give here an example. For example: in Islam, the Shia branch is considered within the ‘orthodox’ line of Islam - but Shia sects are not necessarily terrorists or militant, and other non-Shia groups, although not orthodox - are militant and even terrorists. We may not like Nichiren Shoshu, but for honesty in description of the sect, the word Orthodox is the proper designition.

In any case, this WP article is not about Nichiren Shoshu. It is about Soka Kyoiku Gakkai and relevant mention of Nichiren shoshu should -logically- be within the focus on SKG, the title of the article.

The previous text lacked a very importnat presentation from the start - to inform readers about what is the meaning of the tiltle itself: the 'So' & 'Ka' - components of SokaKG, and what was the vision of its founder about Value Creation. Few quotes were added to fill the gap.

Quotes from RS are indication of the honesty in presenting the text without personal interpretations or additions of POV.

Concrete quotes ensure the reader of reading exactly what a source states - without false addition or personal interpretation. Citations are fine when they reflect the truth. But highly disputable (or even wrong) citations are a big problem but which can be avoided simply by straightforward quotes without unnecessary additions.

Because of the complexity of the subject of History section, I think the best way is to address the topic a step after another, a stage by stage. Further improvements of the phases of Development and Expansion will follow, after considerable attention to RS and truthful quotes. I believe this adds to the quality of WP article. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 12:12, 29 March 2013 (UTC)

You are degrading the article by inserting citations to non-peer-reviewed websites. Shii (tock) 15:09, 31 March 2013 (UTC)

May I suggest the dissertation by Levi Mclaughlin, Dominating Tradition Soka Gakkai and the Creation of History: https://tspace.library.utoronto.ca/bitstream/1807/12949/1/MQ45445.pdf Mark Rogow 04/21/13 — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:306:CC5C:D6C9:792A:B601:F773:CBFD (talk) 00:20, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

Ishii: you seem to have a problem with Nichiren Shoshu, so if you have any respect to Wikipedia, you can refer to Shoshu as presented in Wikipedia article about Shoshu.Emotional judgments and POV will not be allowed. As an impartial step in editing, I returned the mention of Nichiren Shoshu to its WP refrence. You should not have a problem with WP reference. Again this page is not about your opinion about Shoshu.
The SGI Quarterly is a verifiable published magazine satisfying the condition of reliable source, there fore your deletion of this reference is vandalism. Now the quote you deleted was returned and will be returned at any other removal. If you do not agree about that source then go to the Dispute resolution Board.

It is below any standard of editing to use WP for an utterly false views. That was your propaganda about the military government in Japan during the II World War having ‘commitment to religious freedom’: “This conflicted with the government's commitment to religious freedom.[24]” Describing a fashist government as having commitment to religious freedom - will not be allowed.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:08, 1 April 2013 (UTC)

" The SGI Quarterly is a verifiable published magazine satisfying the condition of reliable source," Absolutely not. That's not what reliable source means.
"Describing a fashist government as having commitment to religious freedom - will not be allowed." This is your POV derived from your reading of SGI sources, not academic sources. Religious freedom was written into the Japanese Imperial Constitution, and Soka Gakkai's own statements, which I provided with a citation which you removed, contradicted that commitment to religious freedom. Shii (tock) 02:07, 1 April 2013 (UTC)
I restored the previous editing because all the changes Ishii made are POV.
Shii, you have a problem with inserting POV about Shoshu. Wikipedia has an article about Shoshu for readers to refer to. POV will be removed.
Another problem is your own view that SGI Quarterly is not a Reliable Source. This is wrong, it is a Reliable Source equal to any relaible-published-verifiable-traceable publication. For your info, the SGI Quarterly published articles from the academia who are non-Buddhsits, it is an educational reference for research. If you have a problem with this please ask WP Editors, before deleting what you do not like. The burden is on you to prove that that publication is not a RS.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 04:03, 1 April 2013 (UTC)
I consulted with editors at Wikipedia:Reliable_sources/Noticeboard#Is_Wikipedia_a_reliable_source.3F and deleted your unreliable reference to Wikipedia. Shii (tock) 04:42, 1 April 2013 (UTC)
I must thank you Ishii for taking the correct step and consulting the DRBoard. I rerspect the resolution that WP reference is not a Reliebale Source, because it is continually updating. In fact the description you made about Shoshu is quite fitting, I share the same opinion, and history proved that SG has separated from Shoshu and is recognised as a world peace movement. Everything is dynamic.
You have to be fair. The Quarterly quote had to be removed, that's fine and OK by me. But it is incorrect for you to delete quotes from Reliable Sources (about Makiguchi's charges, and interrogation). Your deletion of RS is against WP guidelines.
Thank you again.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 23:20, 1 April 2013 (UTC)
Okay, sure. I will see if there is anything else I can do to make the History section include all the facts about Soka Gakkai's turbulent growth. The Noda period was very important even though there is not much written about it. Shii (tock) 06:31, 2 April 2013 (UTC)

The Difference between POV and Falsehood

Wikipedia would have been ridiculed world wide if on one of its articles an editor stated that the military government in Nazi Germany was “committed to religious freedom”. This would have been even an insult to Jews and others. Yet, an editor inserted in the Foundation section of this article the following;

“Makiguchi believed that "Japan would only prosper once the state recognized Nichiren's teachings as the only correct faith." [19'].This conflicted with the government's commitment to religious freedom.[20]

To clarify what government we are speaking about: it is the military government in Japan during the II W W. It is the same government which in “The 1940 Religion Organisation Law gave the state control over religions and allowed it to use religions to enhance the war efforts” Prof.Daniel Metraux, and also:

“Makiguchi defied the wartime government policy of religious control, which sought to enforce the observance of state Shinto” Buddhism in the Modern World, S. Heine/ C.Prebish – page 204, Oxford University Press, ISBN: 0-19-514697-2

The editor who claimed that the Japanese government was ‘committed to religious freedom’ could not have depended on any RS or any true academic work, because it is falsehood to claim that that government was concerned and committed to religious freedom while all – I repeat: all – sources of history confirm the opposite.

As if this insertion of falsehood was not enough:

in support to adding falsehood to Wikipedia article, and in order to prevent quotes from RS to be published in the article, an unknown “Special Contributor”, claiming to be a Wikipedia editor, deleted various quotations I entered from RS and conditioned my editing to obtaining “consensus”. The unknown editor: 88.104.28.176 is inventing a way now to protect falsehood by deleting quotations from the article which are from RS.

Without going into detailed analysis between innocently inserting a POV - and deliberately inserting falsehood, it seems that the only way to avoid both is to put exact quotations from RS on the subject, and not editor's personal interpretation. Even if two different RS have varying perspectives, both should be presented. There is no compromise on the truth. WP guidelines allow editors to bring exact quotations to avoid conflicting misinterpretation (of citing a source but distorting what the source truly presented).

I am asking all editors who monitor this page to advise whether a complaint against editors who insert falsehood and those who support them – can be lodged to higher WP Administration.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 23:27, 4 April 2013 (UTC)

"it is falsehood to claim that that government was concerned and committed to religious freedom while all – I repeat: all – sources of history confirm the opposite. " Nah dude.
"Makiguchi defied the wartime government policy of religious control..." That's one source. I can provide multiple sources testifying that Japan had no state religion in 1943. Shii (tock) 02:14, 5 April 2013 (UTC)


A vital component of the Foundation period is the relationship between the SKGakkai & the Gov. Sources which give judgements on the commitment to religious freedom at that time – should also be complemented by RS which refer to documents issued by the Japanese government itself. To complete the missing balance of statements on the subject, I added a quotation to this effect.
No article ever is fully complete. However the gaps and mess in this article are huge, and must be steadily and fully addressed in time. Covering the uncompleted citations (whether on this matter or another) does not ignore or erase previous editing. There is always a space to improve the article.
If there is a citation (A) in the article - while another citation or quotation (B) is equally available on the same subject, then both (A) and (B) should be presented for a correct, balanced and mature editing.
The text gives a story that a Tokyo member allegedly told someone about “Divine Punishment”, and that this prompted the gov. to investigate the group. Other sources do not share this scenario, and their analysis of why the gov. investigated the group (including secret police attending its meetings)- must be equally presented because it deals with historical facts (of the crackdown on SKGakkai).
Now I want to raise the issue of using exaggerated words in the editing.
The theatrical-drama expressions (such as “ Threats” “ Divine Punishment” “Intimidation”...) takes place extensively in Toda’s section and will be challenged. To accuse someone who was expressing own spiritual beliefs - as making threats, is only an immature judgement and a POV, not a fact. I will explain why:
when Christians tell you that if you do not obey God - then you’ll get the consequence of sufferings, they are not “threatening”, they are using their Freedom of Expression about their belief.
Similarly, Buddhist speak about the Law of Cause and Effect. And out of compassion to save individuals from sufferings (from the causes they are doing) they explain that causes lead top consequences.
All people have Freedom to Belief & Expression. When someone expresses own beliefs, no one is obliged to follow, and a wise person follows the principle of “Like it or leave it” – you don;t have to follow what others preach. But to errupt in judegement and accuse others of “making threats” because they are expressing their compassionate beliefs - this is just irrational.
The same thing of dramatizing words in the article applies for translating the word ‘shakubuku‘ by some sources - deforming the full meaning of the word. Such inaccuracies - even mistakes - will be addressed, and this may make the article longer but richer, more complete and truly mature.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:27, 8 April 2013 (UTC)
You're acting as if the concept of intimidation simply doesn't exist in your mind, or SKG members never intimidated non-members. Reliable sources show otherwise. Shii (tock) 02:35, 8 April 2013 (UTC)
No, Shii, I do not act with any intimidation. The concept of intimidation and its meaning is known to my mind of course - as it is known to you and all people. But I never acted with behavioural intimidation.
Please read my words with peace of mind and openmindedness to good faith. In my input above, I was impartially speaking about the Christian and Buddhist beliefs (beliefs in causes and effects), and the consequences of one's behaviour as delivered by God or the Law.
Please refrain from statements and judgements directed towards my person. Let's contribute in a mature and valable manner with arguments based on reason (rather than emotional judgements or volatile dramatic wording).
I do not need your apology, just letting you know that your judgement about what I think or act is false and it is a violation to WP rules.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 02:59, 8 April 2013 (UTC)
I don't know what you're talking about. I am talking about your statement: "When someone expresses own beliefs, no one is obliged to follow, and a wise person follows the principle of “Like it or leave it” – you don;t have to follow what others preach. But to errupt in judegement and accuse others of “making threats” because they are expressing their compassionate beliefs - this is just irrational." Reliable sources show that SKG intimidated non-members. Shii (tock) 03:15, 8 April 2013 (UTC)
You are confusing the Freedom of Speech with intimidation.
After the war, Freedom of Speech was granted to all citizens. Those who were angry at the misery which the war caused, had the right and responsibility to speak up against mistaken beliefs which lead to sufferings. They have the right - and also the compassionate obligation - to explain to others the consequences of causes which lead to disasters. This is freedom of expression. You are very wrong to perceive Christians speaking about Hell as intimidating others, or Buddhists speaking about cause and effect as threatening to do personal harm. It is God in case of the Christians and the Universal Law in case of Buddhists who decides on people’s experiences.
The focus and zeal of SG members against beliefs which make sufferings is explained by RS that for Toda, Shakubuku was “the means to create a world in which the sufferings epitomised by the recent war could not happen again.” (Buddhism in the Modern World, S. Heine,C.Prebish – page 205. Oxford University Press, ISBN: 0-19-514697-2).

Did you know that some people in Japan worshipped foxes? Why would someone like SGakkai members - who believes that animal worship is wrong - be silent? The true intimidation comes from those trying to accuse others in order to silence their freedom of expression.

Some RS may give a POV that “speech is intimidation” but other RS say that the accusations of the shakubuku way of intimidation for following false religions “are now dismissed as excessive zeal on the part of uneducated members” Japans journal of religious studies 18/1 - page 74 http://nirc.nanzan-u.ac.jp/nfile/2445 and this must also be openmindedly accepted.
Sources which use flammable words such as “threat and intimidation” implicitly accuse the Japanese Legal System which did not act to stop any activity of the SG. Encyclopedia is not a place for flammable words of baseless accusations as these theatrical statements are POV and constitute tabloid type propaganda - and they have no substance. This is what the Legal System and RS state. I am working on Toda’s part to fill the missing information and correct unreasonable accusations.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 12:53, 9 April 2013 (UTC)
"Some RS may give a POV that" ... I'm sorry, this is just "My POV is NPOV". Your sophistry is hardly Cicero.
"other RS say that the accusations of the shakubuku way of intimidation for following false religions “are now dismissed as excessive zeal on the part of uneducated members” " Come now, this is your most blatant and malicious misquote yet. Let's quote the full sentence, shall we?
Accusations of intimidation are now dismissed as excessive zeal on the part of uneducated members, but, as Murakami and others have shown, much of it has been organized by high-ranking leaders.
I won't hold my breath for an apology.
"Sources which use flammable words such as “threat and intimidation” implicitly accuse the Japanese Legal System which did not act to stop any activity of the SG. " As my research discovered, "in 1952, the Justice Department forced Toda to denounce intimidation and violence during shakubuku." Of course you have already argued that this information should not be in the article.
"Did you know that some people in Japan worshipped foxes? " When you spout nonsense like this you run the risk of simply being banned from editing this article. Shii (tock) 15:30, 9 April 2013 (UTC)


Wow!! I didn’t know that you have such an authority over WP
to threaten me by banning from editing – as your last sentence declares!
Fox worship is practiced in Japan and this is a fact. Please look at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inari_%C5%8Ckami and - although this subject is not a particular focus here, but if I find a Source related to the article on this - I will definitely mention it.
I have no problem with Murakami’s view and full quote will be presented, no problem with that. The quotation confirms that leaders and members were all enthusiastic, and exercised their freedom of expression with zeal. The claim of Intimidation and threats is only a perception of fear (from freedom of expression) especially that members addressed their conviction about various beliefs with zeal and energetic discussions. It was all legal and that's why the organisation flourished and widely spread.
The 1952 event you are referring to will be addressed. It was the date of formal registration of the organization. The word “forced” is your invention. Previously you also invented words like: “severe cases of violence” all false, they do not exist in the reference you mentioned. Putting falsehood (in your citations) in the mouth of authors - such as the words which they did not say - this is against WP rules. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:50, 10 April 2013 (UTC)

G'day, this was brought to my attention at the DRN committee as a complex matter which could cause serious brain ache and I was asked to give it a crack to settle the dispute. As I am a dispute resolution team member and not very active with 3O I am leaving the 3O entry in situ for now as alternate opinions can never hurt. However on a brief evaluation this does indeed appear a complex issue and to do it any justice I would like to have some time to research the issue more thoroughly. This usually takes anywhere between 1 - 12 hours depending on my workload, but given it's a weekend it shouldn't be too drawn out nor painful. :) BaSH PR0MPT (talk) 16:56, 12 April 2013 (UTC)

The main contentions are over these words "intimidation" and "forced conversion", so please keep an eye out for how those terms are used in any sources you read. Safwan is promising a number of other changes but I don't have a problem with supplying additional context as long as it's well-sourced (he has utterly ignored WP:MOS, but that's not a content dispute). Shii (tock) 17:32, 12 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, any matter becomes complex and contentious if emotionalism and personal accusation get unnecessarily involved. Although BaSH PROMPT did not specify what particular matters of concern are in focus, I assume that for WP, the priority is to solve the problem of an editor threatening and intimidating another on this Talkpage. This is the most serious matter to decide on, and here is Shii's threatening me to be banned from editing -
'"Did you know that some people in Japan worshipped foxes? " When you spout nonsense like this you run the risk of simply being banned from editing this article. Shii
The subject was about members of the Soka Kyoiku Gakkai excercising their Freedom of Expression to speak out against what they believe to be false ideas or religions which can cause sufferings. I said that when Christians - for example - speak about the consequences of evil doing - well, they are not intimidating or thereatening - they simply present their belief in God and consequences of disobeying God.
It is similar with Buddhists who speak about Cause and Effect. If I believe that Fox Worship will cause the worshipper illusions and sufferings, it is my compassionate action to speak out against it. There are many bizarr beliefs everywhere, and we have all the freedom to courageously challenge the beliefs which lead to serious problems. To call this concern and compassion as intimidation (and forceful conversation or conversion) is only one point of view. It is a "perception", not a fact. Along side this one point of view (or perception) there are other perspectives and statements (about the subject) which should be equally presented in a balanced article. I do not see any complex matter or contradiction here with WP guidelines in editing.
If we stick to these guidelines (of impartial and balanced editing) then there is abosolutely no problem and no dispute. I haven't yet presented the statements of RS on shakubuku (or other matters yet to follow) and I am not disputing that some RS call shakubuku intimidation and forced cnversion. Let them state their perception, that is one side of a coin. But there are other sources which also examine the truth about that practice, which is legal, compassionate and a right of citizen- as many scholars present it. Both descriptions of the subject should be presented in a balanced article. Where is the dispute? No where.
The dispute - and the problem - is created here on a WP Talk page by one editor acting as if having control over WP Administration - and threatening another editor - myself - as mentioned above. What was the reason for Shii's threat? It was originated by his dislike to state the truth (about Fox Worship or similar) - this is a violation to WP essence, it is a violation to Freedom of Expression of the truth, and a violation to acceptable manner to wards other editors. This IS the central problem here and the dispute about what authority Shii has over WP, and I request examioning this problem (before any other theoretical subject, and which RS would sufice to settle). I request BaSH PR0MPT for dealing with Shii's threat of banning me from editing and for an opinion on the tendency for censurship, gaging and disregarding the truth. I do not accept apologies, I accept WP rules on this subject.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 04:39, 13 April 2013 (UTC)
I said that because that line of argument is so irrelevant to the article it ventures into the realm of trying to turn Wikipedia into a source of Nichiren Buddhist apologetics, as does your belief that such information should actually be included in the article (since the only sources that I saw mentioning the subject were Soka Gakkai apologetics).
Japanese people can worship foxes or bears or whatever they want. They are free to do so, since freedom of religion has been guaranteed in Japan since the 1880s, and the sources I found say that even Soka Gakkai supports that. The private views of Japanese should not affect how NPOV sources describe the Soka Gakkai's interaction with Japanese society. If a source vilifies the Japanese as heathens, that is a POV and makes the source questionable. If you try to make Wikipedia do the same, then your style of editing is not useful to us. I apologize that my terse statement that "this line of argument is grounds for banning" did not make that clear to you. Shii (tock) 08:08, 13 April 2013 (UTC)
You have finally accepted that Freedom of Beliefs and Freedom of Expression in Japan is constitutional and legal - and this is what shakubuku was: freedom of belief and freedom of expression about the consequences of false beliefs (in this particular ex.: against worship of foxes and bears). I mentioned earlier that the focus in this article is not on Fox Worship however, if a book refers to this subject in relation with the article - then whether you like it or not - the source will be mentioned.
If a citizen believes that animals such as rats (in India) fox , bear (in Japan) or people ( emperor) worship - had led to misery, war : murder of millions of families, then this citizen has the right to speak out, and this is what happened and it is irreversible, so you have to accept this as well. An article in WP about Animal Worship and opponent to this belief - will be interesting for all people to know about.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:29, 14 April 2013 (UTC)
I look forward to your article on animal worship. Since such a concept seems to be prominent in Nichiren Buddhism you could definitely use that page to explain SGI doctrine on it, too; that would be encyclopedic and interesting to me. I do think, though, that it would be confusing to conflate animals and human beings in an article on animal worship. Shii (tock) 00:31, 14 April 2013 (UTC)

After a pained two days trying to complete my 3O write-up I have noticed further discussion from new editors contributing to assist. I will withhold my consideration pending the outcome of that, I feel this may be best dealt with as a DRN matter should it not find resolution with additional opinions as recommendations can be made that will enable current editors to continue editing uninterrupted and given the research I have put in to both the subject matter and editors involved would rather retain my review for DRN rather than deal with it in 3O and have to excuse myself from handling it at DRN for past encounters with the process. BaSH PR0MPT (talk) 18:51, 14 April 2013 (UTC)

Sources and Clarifications

Hello,

I was asked to take part in this discussion to help determine viable sources for the Nichiren Shoshu article, but based on my limited experience, this is more difficult than expected.

The problem is that Western research on Nichiren Buddhism in general (regardless of branch) is somewhat minimal, especially when compared to Zen or Pure Land branches of Buddhism. I can't say why this is, but the research simply isn't there unless either:

  1. Someone wants to promote Nichiren Buddhism, or
  2. Someone wants to point it out for criticism

I have no particular interest in either side of that discussion, so instead I will suggest that the best way to resolve this article dispute may simply to cut out any and all potentially contentious material. Keep the article terse and bland as you would sort of expect an encyclopedia article.

Anyhow, I think someone asked about the term "orthodox" with regard to the name. The name is 日蓮正宗, which just means "Nichiren True/Correct Teachings". This is not such an unusual name in Japanese Buddhism, because you can see it in other, unrelated sects. Jodo Shinshu Buddhism is translated roughly as "True Teachings of the Pure Land" sect. The name probably arose for historical reasons and simply stuck. The term "orthodox" for 正 probably is not the best translation though, where "correct" might be. Someone with better experience in Japanese may be able to weigh in on that though.

Also, regarding Japan in the 1940's, it did have a state religion, now called "State Shinto". State Shinto began in the Meiji Period and was generally pretty antagonistic toward (foreign) Buddhist institutions. The 肉食妻帯 (nikujiku saitai) edict of 1872 for example forced priests to marry and eat meat. Similarly, Shinto and Buddhist institutions were forcibly separated. Some Buddhist groups (and non-State Shinto groups) eventually toed the line and followed government regulations, while others resisted. It's not always divided by sect either, as individual temples probably had some flexibility in this too. Professors Reader and Tanabe write some good books on the subject (re: Shinto and Government).

The "Fox Worship" comment is interesting and somewhat misleading. The kami Inari was a god of harvest, commerce, etc, and according to tradition used foxes as a messenger to report on harvests, etc. It is true that foxes often adorn shrines for Inari kami (a photo I took a few years ago), but it's not quite the same as worshipping foxes per se. Similarly, bulls are often used to adorn shrines for Tenjin, another kami, but Tenjin is a scholar of learning, not bulls. The symbolism of the bull derives from a story about his death as do plum blossoms. Mirrors are often used in Shinto shrines, but Japanese people do not worship mirrors. Long story short, the only items actually worshipped in a Shinto shrine are ofuda (which are said to contain an extension of the kami's essence) or whatever that shrine uses as a yorishiro (依り代), a kind of "antenna" which the Kami will descend and occupy.

Animals or symbols of animals are not used in either circumstance.

Again, just to clarify some points raised. Thanks!

--Ph0kin (talk) 08:33, 13 April 2013 (UTC)

I disagree with the "State Shinto" thesis (I recommend Susumu Shimazono's writings on the subject), and I don't think your characterization of the nikujiku saitai is very accurate-- it was actually part of the recognition of religious freedom, and removed legal restraints on priests who wanted to marry and eat meat. The mental image of a priest being forced to eat meat by a government bureaucrat is quite amusing, though. Shii (tock) 08:44, 13 April 2013 (UTC)
Thank you Ph0kin for presenting your research. An intelligent person would accept your sound and impartial explanation about the Shito system of belief, but for many simple-minded people, the existence of animals in worship places associates animals with divinity (and even the mirror is divine in some Japanese backround beliefs). In any case, it is an interesting presentation, although it relates to Japanese history in general, not to the specific of this article about The Soka Gakkai and SG International.
Regarding Nichiren Shoshu: this article is not about judegemnts of how Shoshu is viewed. Here we find only one perspective judgeing it as 'controversial' sect, or 'militraristc', but other sources refer to it as 'orthodox' or 'true' while Dr. J. Stone describe it as 'small and insignificant' sect - so which judgement - of these 3 judgements - an impartial article will take? Either to leave it as just 'Shoshu' , with a WP reference to that name - or to put all views equally without biase to one only perspective. In any case I am not really concerned about Shoshu, so I'll not bother more.
Encyclopedias do not fear conflicting views about any subject. Encyclopedias honestly and impartially present variety of perspectives about the subject and leave it as such - without additional judgement. There is no contentious (or tense situation) in any mature presentation, as we are not editing here to make propaganda (about the Shinto or SG) but to impartially present facts and sources, diverse as they are. I will give an example:
One source stated that the military government in Japan was committed to religious freedom. Other sources decalre just the opposit. How would an impartial Encyclopedia deal with this? I think : by presenting both views equally. No need for tension and taking sides.
Another example: some sources say that the practice of 'shakubuku' was intimidating and threatening. Other sources state that members who were speaking out their beliefs (shakubuku) were beaten and in some situation stones were thrown at them. Any Encyclopedia which mentions only one view about this (or other) subject is biased, or - at least - immature and inaccurate. I believe we can make of WP a wonderful reference of the truth by ourselves being mature and honest in presenting facts, respecting all views as equal.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 01:10, 14 April 2013 (UTC)

I have been watching some of this without getting involved and I kind of don't want to get involved right now but I do want to say that the above comment is just not helpful. When you say "An intelligent person would accept your sound and impartial explanation about the Shito system of belief, but for many simple-minded people, the existence of animals in worship places associates animals with divinity (and even the mirror is divine in some Japanese backround beliefs)" that isn't helpful at all. That isn't respectful and it is a really passive-aggressive way of insulting someone else which isn't a good way to find a middle ground. Helpsome (talk) 02:16, 14 April 2013 (UTC)

Thank you Helpsome for your indication. I undrestand, and I offer my apology for not clarifying my view in a better way. I definitely do not mean to offend anyone.
Apart from the Shinto beliefs now, I want to communicate this fact in general terms about how WP deals with the isssue of 'religious sensitivities'. Some beliefs were behind extreme acts of violence and caused humanity lot of sufferings. If we woud ignore speaking up our conviction - because of 'sensitivities' - then are we fair about the truth?
I will bring an example of child sacrifice or in general human sacrifice, practiced in remote villages in India. This is said to have been for centuaries - to satisfy god 'Kali". Some attribute this god to a version of Hindu beliefs. I am giving just an example of the general issue of how to present facts in an Encyclopedia being fair to the truth.
This discussion is very helpful to maintain an impartial position of the Encyclopedia in this difficult subject of religious sensitivities. I think an impartial presentation of any subject, supported by RS, is sufficient without any need for personal judgements. Again I thank you for your proper insight and I correct myself. This is a benefit I gain from participating in this meaningful discussion.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 05:01, 14 April 2013 (UTC)

Is Wikipedia a Secular Encyclopedia?

I appreciate the responses from BaSH PR0MPT and Helpsome about the current situation on SG page and Talkpage. There are 2 distinct matters here: one relating to WP Editors opinions about theoretical subjects (such as Shinto, shakubuku .… etc) – and the other relates to behaviour of editors.

The theoretical subjects do not constitute a problem. They are settled by citations from academic researchers’ work on subjects at hand. However, the other issue – and which was not addressed - is that of behaviour.

I am referring here to the following quotation : Do not threaten people: For example, threatening people with "admins you know" or having them banned for disagreeing with you. Explaining to an editor the consequences of violating Wikipedia policies, like being blocked for vandalism, is permitted however. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk_page_guidelines

Apparently, Shii disagrees with me about certain religious issues, about the freedom of expression (in shakubuku), and in defiance of WP rules gives himself the right to threaten me with banning:

"Did you know that some people in Japan worshipped foxes? " When you spout nonsense like this you run the risk of simply being banned from editing this article. Shii (tock) 15:30, 9 April 2013 (UTC)

Please note that this is not a personal matter at all. It relates to a behavioural tendency to restrict editing to one view only, and to give threats. Yes, we all make mistakes, and we have the capacity to correct ourselves as well. But nothing was done regarding the threat.

I decided to write to Jimmy Wales, sending him a letter today about the problem of ‘religious sensitivities’, and the tendency for restriction in editing to what one religious side wants -, and most importantly to openly given threats. I want to be sure whether WP is a secular environment. Meanwhile I am working on reviewing and improving various parts of this messy and incomplete article.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 03:45, 15 April 2013 (UTC)

I WP:AGF about your intention to write a good article, but rubbish like "Japanese people worship foxes, therefore we should sympathize with Soka Gakkai" is not only POV, it is the sort of thing that gets people topic banned from articles, which is why I strongly recommended you avoid it. You can look up plenty of previous cases about this. Shii (tock) 13:47, 15 April 2013 (UTC)

Request for Action against Disrespecting Wikipedia

This is a request to WP Editors, BaSH PR0MPT and Helpsome and also others as well - to take a stand regarding the behaviour of deliberate falsification and lying - whether in a WP article or here on this Talkpage. In case it is not your domain to take a stand on this behaviour , I would sincerely request a direction on where in WP structure I would be able to present the case against deliberately lying in editing WP article and deliberate deformation both in WP article and also on Talkpage. Out of several others, I have 2 cases which I want to formally raise:

/1/ In this article, Shii falsely stated that: “In 1952, the Justice Department intervened in the most severe cases, forcing Toda to end the use of assault and violence during shakubuku.[18]” The reference to this information - which Shii mentioned - had absolutely nothing on 'intervention in most severe cases', added by Shii's story-telling unhealthy imagination. The word 'assult' was never used in the source. The fact is that in 1952 the SG was newly registered - and the formal procedure required acknowledgment of abiding by the Law, and which was accordingly fulfilled. Shii deliberately lied in deforming the truth by imaginary “severe cases of violence and assualt' which never occurred.

This matter is mentioned in’ Improving the Article’ section (here on Talkpage, 28 March). Later, Shii justified his lies as being the result of ‘laziness’: of “I see how my own citing is lazy with the Justice Department quote”. The attitude of lying and dishonesty is foreign to any academic work and is not accepted in WP - there must be a mechanism in WP addressing this style of editing. And a mechanism to deal with an editor based on troublled-imaginary and story-telling style of editing WP article. I request to know WP Editors stand on what to do with an editor who knowingly introduces lies, putting falsehood in the mouth of authors he refers to.

/2/ In a discussion on Talkpage about what some people regard as false belief (and have the right to speak out their views about it) - I mentioned that some people in Japan worshipped foxes, a truth that is verifiable. Reference to this matter was just a small example of what some regard as false belief, and thier right to express their views on that. That's all, and it was not a matter of any focus in the article. However, With the intent to lie, Shii quoted me as saying: "Japanese people worship foxes, therefore we should sympathize with Soka Gakkai" . I never wrote this. Shii invented the quote from an imagination which is not healthy, incorrect and emotionally tense with conflicts. But while this ridiculous way of behavior and unjustified sensitivity is taking place here on a WP platform, I am asking for an avenue to formally deal with this situation. This is not a situation of vandalism, it is worse: it is about deliberate disrespect to WP itself. It is about using WP for fabrication of the truth and uncivilized attitude of making threats ; it is an act of delibrate aggression - all taking place on WP.

I do not accept apology from Shii, and I request a direction for initiating an formal action against deliberate lying and also issuing threats.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 01:00, 16 April 2013 (UTC)

Come on dude. With regards to (1), I made two separate claims but only gave a source for one of them. Later I supplied one of several other sources that attest to “severe cases of violence and assualt". There's nothing dishonest in that.
With regards to (2), it is well known that if you start talking about stuff that is unrelated to improving the article, especially in an attempt to gain the sympathy of editors for the article's subject, you run the risk of being topic banned per WP:NOTFORUM. There was a discussion about that on the administrators' noticeboard just this week. In that discussion, I voted against a ban. I do not seek to get you banned. Shii (tock) 02:23, 16 April 2013 (UTC)

Since requested input here it is - I think both SafwanZabalawi and Shii have already laid out their views and should both probably just stop. Take a breather. SafwanZabalawi is overtly calling Shii a liar even after I earlier asked him to try to be more respectful (after he had not-so-subtly called Shii "simple-minded") and this isn't helpful at all. Shii seems to be at the border of his patience as well so it would probably be best for both parties to just let BaSH PR0MPT finish trying to resolve everything. This rudeness isn't making anyone's points of view more valid. Helpsome (talk) 02:34, 16 April 2013 (UTC)

I agree 100% and I have stuff to do so I will quit this discussion for a while. To summarize this very, very long argument, I tried as hard as I could to get the History section of this article looking like a short, accurate summary of the many good histories by Professors Kesala, J.W. White, Brannen, and Ramseyer, but now it looks like this instead. Please leave me a message on my talk page if there is something for me to comment on here. Shii (tock) 03:18, 16 April 2013 (UTC)
Helpsome: I believe you really misread my remark about the “simple minded” – it was not as you mentioned here about Shii at all, that was your own interpretation. And it was not meant to be disrespectful to anyone, and I offered my apologies for any misunderstanding and misconceiving what I wrote. That matter was closed. To bring that closed matter now does not solve the ongoing problem of disruptive editing of this article, fabricated stories, and lies on this Talkpage : Shii lied by quoting me saying something I never said and he did not withdraw his lie. These issues will not go until resolved, as they are issues pertaining to WP, not to me personally.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 04:00, 16 April 2013 (UTC)
Why ask for advice if you are going to ignore it and continue being abrasive? It isn't my own interpretation about your words. You and Shii were disagreeing about the Shito system of belief and then you said "An intelligent person would accept your sound and impartial explanation about the Shito system of belief, but for many simple-minded people, the existence of animals in worship places associates animals with divinity (and even the mirror is divine in some Japanese backround beliefs)..." which makes it obvious that you were talking about Shii as he was the only person who disagreed with you about animal worship. How can you complain about dishonesty and then do something like that? It seems increasingly clear that you are less inclined to find a common ground and more inclined to insult Shii. Helpsome (talk) 05:42, 16 April 2013 (UTC)


Thank you, Helpsome, for bringing the whole quote I made - and in which it is obvious that you do not find Shii's name at all. Your conclusion that I meant to say that Shii is simple minded - is not correct, as I was speaking in general about various objects of divinity in temples, and about the divine mirror...issues that had absolutely nothing to do with Shii. Besides, that remark you refer to was immediately clarified by me. For me it was closed with my sincere apology for any misunderstanding. For this reason, I hope you review your perspective, as I have respect to you and to Shii as persons, and there is absolutely nothing personal in this discussion.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 07:09, 16 April 2013 (UTC)

Improving Development section

In order to complete the ‘Development’ section, I added important facts - such as the conflict between Toda and the Priesthood - and provided quotations on other issues, which were missing in the previous text. As the DRB indicated :sources related to the organisation can be used to clarify the organisation’s stand on certain issues. I preserved the previous edit but re-arranged the text to a better flow and presentation.

The SG is viewed as a controversial organisation, and for this reason variety of perspectives on controversial issues should be mentioned (not only one-sided view). The most misunderstood and controversial issues here is the perception of shakubuku, which did not have a definition in the previous text, and which was portrayed by one-sided views. Impartial and balanced editing requires presenting clarification and statements from various RS.

There was no deletion of text from previous edit: the same information in the previous edit was kept as in the previous edit - but shifted to appropriate paragraphs. I shifted some sentences from one paragraph to another to fit the flow of information for better clarity. There was no deletion apart from minor & unnecessary details (such as the number of 75 Union branches and coal miners in Yubari province and other sentences occupying unnecessary space ) - Now the conflict with Japan’s Communist Party is mentioned in more concise presentation.

Instead of citations which included words which do not appear in the referenced source – a quotation from the reference was used. Quotations may contribute to a somehow longer text, but a safe and correct reference, and a more rich article.

Further sections in this article require correction and also a future clean up. For example: someone invented a reference called “bible of Shakubuku” and this sarcastic, immature and false naming of a reference is disregard to WP guidelines and does not add to the quality of WP article. Other issues will be examined in time.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 05:08, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

Sarcastic naming and personal blogs are not RS

The “Pre-1992 teachings” section, included two paragraphs: the first of which related to the position of Nichiren Shoshu regarding the Gohonzon. For this reason I included the paragraph related to the Gohonzon and Nichiren Shoshu in the section about the Gohonzon/conferral. As for the other paragraph: it was based on inventing a “funny title” (the “Bible of shakubuku”) - described in an immature blog: http://kemponhokke.blogspot.com.au/2013/03/sgi-bible-of-shakubuku.html This is not a Wikipedia approved Reliable Source.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 07:18, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

I eagerly await Mr. Mark Rogow's defense of his sources. Obviously his own blog is an unreliable source Shii (tock) 06:34, 1 May 2013 (UTC)

http://nirc.nanzan-u.ac.jp/nfile/3183 -- Mark Rogow May 5, 2013 — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:306:BCB1:49A9:813E:A34F:D8F2:DF72 (talk) 19:18, 5 May 2013 (UTC)

Improving the Expansion section

Improving the ‘Expansion’ part required adding various missing information in the previous text (such as Ikeda’s resignation from presidency in 1979, information about involvement with the UN in 1981, and other events and quotations associated with the phase of Expansion). There was no substantial deletion of text from the previous editing: its main part remains exactly the same, however, shifting some sentences from one paragraph to another was necessary to make the flow of presentation more harmonious. (The sentence about building the Shohondo is mentioned in and relates to the next section: 'Schism with the Priesthood). Some scholars (Metraux and others) refer to ” Schism” as “Independence” or "separation" from the Priesthood because division and disagreements between the SG and Nichiren Shoshu existed since even prewar times. The next section (Schism or Separation) is still missing important events and information.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 05:53, 1 May 2013 (UTC)

You should mention that he met with Henry Kissinger Shii (tock) 06:24, 1 May 2013 (UTC)

Differing views

Shii: I agree that the quote I presented (and which you deleted) was not clear, but it was not any deliberate misquote from my side. There is an explanation for that quote: it was a combination of two opposing views on the subject, and contained combined statements - and I realise now that it was not clear or simple. I can explain more but it is a lengthy explanation, and there is no need to spend time on this. It’s Ok with me that you deleted that quote, no worries, I will look for another source on the subject, but this may take some time.

There is a view that the military government in Japan was committed to religious freedom, and there is another view that the military government in Japan was suppressive to other religious groups. Both of these views should be equally presented, as WP is not biased towards any particular view or position. It is a matter of finding RS to support a non-biased presentation.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 12:23, 2 May 2013 (UTC)

The source I removed is certainly non-biased enough, it just doesn't say what you think it does. It says that the 1939 law controlling religious groups was not solely a matter of "limiting religious freedom" since the huge majority of the groups desired reorganization. I think this actually covers both of your "views" but unfortunately the source doesn't cover minority, objecting groups like Soka Gakkai which is why I removed it instead of rewording it. Shii (tock) 13:56, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
I think the subject of the Japanese military government's views (on religious commitment or its lack) is a dead issue together with that military government which vanished almost 70 yeras ago. Whether that military authority was committed to the constitution or not committed - they lost the whole constitution, the country and the validity of their committments. Mentioning about that government which persecuted the Soka Gakkai in this article solidyfies the facts of history and progress. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 13:51, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
Progress is not a fact, it is an opinion. I'm not sure what the point of the rest of your comment is, but surely this recent analysis disproves your claim that this is a "dead issue". Shii (tock) 23:38, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
Progress, achievments, survival and expansion are verifiable facts. For some, the military governmet's past views (about religious freedom) may be still "actual' or "important". Others do not share this perspectives, and both have the right to expression on WP. Since the military government created disasters and defeated Japan and then vanished altogether with its committments - then its past views are irrelevant to any present actuality. But this does not mean that it cannot be mentioned as part of history, (regardless of miniority or majority - counted by someone - views). WP is not about publishing only one current of views and hiding others. That's why both views about this - or any other subject - should be stated. This also applies to the next part of Schism or Separation from the priesthood. Views from both sides should be stated in an impartial Encyclopedia.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 08:14, 4 May 2013 (UTC)

SG & Priesthood part

The previous title “Schism with the Priesthood” was relevant to the differences between the SG & Shoshu, while this History section of the article is relevant to the result of schism, and which is the Separation of the two administrations. (Some scholars - Daniel Metraux, Seager - refer to the current phase as “Independence” - from the Priesthood, but probably “Separation from the Priesthood” is a realistic description.

The current editing completed the previous text by adding missing facts of dispute on doctrinal issues (as well as criricism against the Soka Gakkai regarding cultural activities). Focus in the current editing was on the final stage of dispute which led to excommunication and complete separation of the two administrations.

Some of the paragraphs were shifted to accomodate addition of missing events. I have deleted unconfirmed (and unnecessary) statements such as “Nichiren Shōshū continues to charge large fees for weddings and ceremonies…” as this claim may seem to be accusative (and not referenced). I also deleted weak sentences such as “this long-running dispute this reached a boiling point ..” and similar.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 05:28, 14 May 2013 (UTC)

You changed this passage:
In 1978, though, Shoshu discovered that Gakkai had been manufacturing its own Gohonzon. A major dispute was carried out in private while the public image remained cheery.
To this:
In 1978, however Nichiren Shoshu opposed the Gakkai enshrinement of wooden Gohonzon, a disagreement which was followed by a series of other disputes.
I disagree with this wording. The Gakkai did not announce it was enshrining wooden Gohonzon. They did this in secret and Shoshu figured it out through some means and accused them in secret (a better source is needed to confirm the details, but the secrecy of the dispute is obvious from other sources). Your wording makes it sound like Shoshu just randomly got angry during ordinary church business, which is wrong. Other than that I have no disagreements Shii (tock) 13:37, 14 May 2013 (UTC)
As you mentioned, Shii, one needs RS to support the issue of "wooden Gohonzon". But the idea of 'secrecy' is just unreasonable : the wooden Gohonzons were enshreined in public centres and viewed by any visitor. There is absolutely no secret about turning a paper mandala into a wooden one. And what you say is true:: "The Gakkai did not announce it was enshrining wooden Gohonzon" - they did it openly but without "permission". What's the big deal in turning a papaer mandala into a wooden one, one ponders. Well, yes the big deal was: who has authority over the Gohonzon. This was not any random disagreement, or random anger as you mentioned: it was a building up anger over years of disagreements because of taking the previlage out of monopoly of priests.
The Priesthood opposed any move which was not comfortable for their authority (anythimng that make ordinary people equal to them). This had started with the opposition to Toda's teaching of the Lotus Sutra (and that he was not qualified according to Shoshu) - then oppostion to doing the prayers by ordinary people (full Gongyo) equal to priests and then in building Culture Centres (instead of temples) and then in enshreining wooden Gohonzon (regarded as a private property of the priesthood). But here in this text - there was no point to mention and put this long list of disagreements over the years - and prolong the text. Anyway, I will search furthe for further information about the wooden Gohonzon and other matters.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 02:44, 15 May 2013 (UTC)
I caution you again against unnecessary bias against the priesthood. From their point of view, in 1978 Soka Gakkai was a group of their own believers who had suddenly adopted practices that went against their rules. Soka Gakkai had not yet declared that they wanted to make their own rules. Shii (tock) 12:53, 15 May 2013 (UTC)
For your info, WP guidelines do not caution against “unnecessary bias”. There is no such thing as “necessary bias” and “unnecessary”, because bias (and also POV)are basically rejected.
So, your POV that 1978 SG was a group of Shoshu “own” property of believers, cannot appear in text as it is a POV - not an academic statement – unless you have a RS that SG was “owned” by Shoshu. This is a very important point related to the 'role of each side',and was also examined by scholars who gave the precise reasons about the essence of the dispute, as the added quotations explain.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 04:56, 16 May 2013 (UTC)
That is very silly. Gakkai, Shoshu, and academic materials before 1989 will all show that Soka Gakkai was the lay group for Shoshu and intended to abide by Shoshu rules. I saw that statement multiple times in the sources I read and I'm certain you have too. There is no "other side" to that issue, and the paragraph you just inserted is anachronistic to that period of Soka Gakkai's history. Shii (tock) 08:12, 16 May 2013 (UTC)
Well, you said it yourself Shii - that, while the situation seemed "cheery" and Gakkai followed the rules, however dispute deeply existed. The reason is that SG is a lay movement but not of Shoshu, because it was not established by Shoshu. And before 1989...you should have read the fact that even Toda was banned from visiting the head temple, and Ikeda was forbidden from speaking (guidance) in public, then he did not comply - so "Gakkai abiding by Shoshu rules" is incorrect theory. Gakkai emerged in response to war devastation and misery, and it was based on opposing wars, spreading culture and peace. Pacyfism,Humanity, nonviolence, nuclear disarmament, global citizenship etc... are basics of SGI but Shoshu's focuse was on donations to temples, ceremonies, and making the teachings their private property. Worlds apart! SGI did not follow Shoshu - it was and is just a lay peace movement following Nichiren.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 23:55, 16 May 2013 (UTC)

Excellent and complete article on the issue [from 1973-1979] by Reverend Kando Tono, Shoshinkei priest: Background, Meaning, and Content Leading to the Split, https://groups.google.com/forum/?fromgroups=#!searchin/alt.religion.buddhism.nichiren/the$20background$2C$20meaning$2C$20content$20$26$20spirit.$20.$20.%22$20by$20Rev.$20Kando$20Tono%7Csort:relevance/alt.religion.buddhism.nichiren/wwNy42T1x_s/P8uEsO3Z5ygJ Mark Rogow 05/19/2013 — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:306:CC5C:E699:DCD5:3589:76D5:490F (talk) 04:06, 20 May 2013 (UTC)

General Clean-Up

The sign previously put (for clean up) in April asked for better clarity in the Intro - and I rearranged the previous text to coincide with a chronological flow of related events and major information.

The article requires still further clean up and editing: Having 2 separate sections about the Gohonzon, “ The Object” and “Conferral of Gohonzon” – can be simplified by merging the two sections into one (as both relate to the same subject). This subject is about the current SGI Gohonzon and it is not about Nichiren Shoshu DaiGohonzon, which is a subject belonging to the article about the DaiGohonzon and which I will edit later. Also, a major information about SGI Charter is missing – but this will be for later on.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 06:04, 6 June 2013 (UTC)

I have combined two unnecessarily separate sections about the Gohonzon ( The Object of Devtion + Conferral of Gohonzon) into simple one section. This section is about SGI Gohonzon, it is not a discussion about Nichiren ShoShu views or daiGohonzon. There were various irrelevant additions about Nichiren Shoshu and the daiGohonzon in Taisekiji, which does not belong to SGI, nor to the subject of the Gohonzon, but rather to Nichiren Shoshu and also the article about daiGohonzon. I will add these there. I am happy that the image of the Gohonzon has been accepted by readers and is stabilised on the page.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 06:35, 14 June 2013 (UTC)

For clarity and improvement of the lengthy section titled “Sources of Belief and World View” – I reorganized it into two sub-sections: one on “Beliefs” and the other on “World Views”. World Views of SGI are mentioned in a 10 point Charter – but putting the whole Charter would take a considerable space, so I just mentioned it with a related reference.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 05:43, 5 July 2013 (UTC)

Immature actions should be addressed

I fully support displaying the Gohonzon's image on the article's page of SGI. In fact, hiding the Gohonzon from display is a view of Nichiren Shoshu priesthood which has nothing to do with SGI.

The imgae was correctly placed in the article for over a year. Few days ago however, Image of the Gohonzon, was deliberately placed up-side-down, by an immature and disrespectful to Wikipedia and to all readers - person, and I have removed now that incorrect image. I'll try to upload the image with the correct orientation, but please do so if you wish.

The Gohonzon is the Object of Devotion for millions of people. Just to make the case clear, you may not be a Christian, but to deliberately place the image of Jesus upside down is not a act of a mentally capable person, it is just an action of immaturity and disrespect to Wikipedia to do such things.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 01:29, 19 August 2013 (UTC)

Fixed Shii (tock) 02:37, 25 August 2013 (UTC)

Quotation cleanup

The history section of this page could use some cleanup, particularly with regard to the number of italicised quotations, which should be replaced with paraphrasing or block quotes in cases of particularly large quotes. CrystalWalrein (talk) 22:59, 24 August 2013 (UTC)

If you attempt to do this SafwanZabalawi will probably revert you (see discussion above). If he doesn't do it now, he will do it later when he notices the article has changed. Shii (tock) 02:27, 25 August 2013 (UTC)
This Talkpage is about the article. It is not about personal judgements of what one editor may - or may not - think or do. Wikipedia has guidelines regarding presentation of quotes, and to my knowledge quotes are put in italics. If this not the case, then anyone who knows better should carry on the correction bound by relevant guidelines. It is proper for you, Shii, to focus on the subject at hand, not on what another editor may think or may not think, using the words "he will, he will not, he...". Please make an effort to raise the quality of this Talkpage.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:35, 26 August 2013 (UTC)
I don't mean to make a personal attack, and I WP:AGF with your attempts to improve the article, but the fact is that you're the one who replaced many of the paraphrases in the article with italicized quotes, and it's very hard to collaborate with you. Shii (tock) 15:07, 26 August 2013 (UTC)

SGI businesses

Any truth to these allegations?

Soka Gakkai owned or affiliated companies:

http://markrogow.blogspot.com/2013/07/soka-gakkai-owned-or-affiliated.html

http://antisgi.blog124.fc2.com/blog-entry-4.html

Misunderstanding Nichiren Buddhism as Nichiren Shoshu

The following remark appeared by editor Lionpride: "Saying Makiguchi "believed" in the Nichiren Shoshu sect is a generalization that doesn't describe their tense and often uneasy relationship, as described in Seagers book, "Encountering the Dharma."

Makiguchi believed in Nichiren Buddhism, joined Nichiren Shoshu and got disappointed by that sect, not by Nichiren Buddhism- (their uneasy relationship is a proof of this). Similarly, one may believe in Christianity but not necessarily in the Catholic church.

Anyway, there are many sources on the subject of Makiguchi and Shoshu relationships. Editors are more accurate when presenting a concise quotation from their reference, rather than a personal interptretation or judegment. This will be followed up. SafwanZabalawi (talk) 03:42, 28 September 2013 (UTC)

Irrelevant information leads to confusion

I deleted the latest addition of the establishment of "Happy Science Party" to this article because it is irrelevant to the subject at hand - and can only weaken the article and confuse readers.

Happy Science Party was established in 2009, while the subject was about the Komeito established in 1955. Wikipedia articles are about facts realted to the subject and not about jumping to another time on unrelated matter.

I am researching into how criticism of Soka Gakkai supporting Komeito has now faded out. I will eventually add this fact to the article. It is just unreasonable to criticise citizens because they have the right to vote (to what ever party they want in a democracy). Dissatisfaction because SG members use their legal right to vote to a registered party in a democracy - this speaks about dissatisfaction from the current system which allows for democracy and human rights.

Nevertheless, the issue of relationship between religion and politics can be a separate meaningful article on its own: M Luther King Jr movement, Gandhi and politics, dalai Lama and Buddhist Government, Christian Democratic Party in Germany and elsewhere...are examples of the correlation between social movements, religions and politics. But this article is not about these comparisions, it is about historical facts (or claims and interpretations) - related to the Soka Gakkai, so let's keep it sharp and neat.SafwanZabalawi (talk) 00:43, 25 October 2013 (UTC)