|President of Soka Gakkai International (SGI)|
26 January 1975
|Honorary President of Soka Gakkai|
23 April 1979
|3rd President of Soka Gakkai|
3 May 1960 â€“ 23 April 1979
|Preceded by||JÅsei Toda|
|Succeeded by||Hiroshi Hojo (åŒ—æ¡æµ©)|
2 January 1928 |
ÅŒta, Tokyo, Japan
|Spouse(s)||Kaneko Ikeda (æ± ç”°é¦™å³¯å)|
Hiromasa Ikeda (æ± ç”°åšæ£)
Ichi Ikeda (mother)
|Alma mater||Fuji Junior College (present-day Tokyo Fuji University)|
The reactions of the human heart are not mechanical and predictable but infinitely subtle and delicate.
Human rights will be a powerful force for the transformation of reality when they are not simply understood as externally defined norms of behavior but are lived as the spontaneous manifestation of internalized values.
It is natural for us, as human beings, to look forward. Our eyes naturally look ahead. In this sense, we are made for moving toward a goal.
It is only through such real-life daily struggles and challenges that a genuine sensitivity to human rights can be inculcated. This is a truth that is not limited to school education: it applies to all of us.
The eyes of a poet discover in each person a unique and irreplaceable humanity. While arrogant intellect seeks to control and manipulate the world, the poetic spirit bows with reverence before its mysteries.
Women are, in my view, natural peacemakers. As givers and nurturers of life, through their focus on human relationships and their engagement with the demanding work of raising children and protecting family life, they develop a deep sense of empathy that cuts through to underlying human realities.
The idea of interdependence is central to Buddhism, which holds that all things come into being through the mutual interactions of various causes and conditions.
The wisdom and experience of older people is a resource of inestimable worth. Recognizing and treasuring the contributions of older people is essential to the long-term flourishing of any society.
There are no greater treasures than the highest human qualities such as compassion, courage and hope. Not even tragic accident or disaster can destroy such treasures of the heart.
A person, who no matter how desperate the situation, gives others hope, is a true leader.
Ultimately, all human activities have as their goal the realization of happiness. Why, then, have we ended up producing the opposite result? Could the underlying cause be our failure to correctly understand the true nature of happiness?
I firmly believe that the mission of religion in the 21st century must be to contribute concretely to the peaceful coexistence of humankind.
Likewise, education can direct people toward good or evil ends. When education is based on a fundamentally distorted worldview, the results are horrific.
Where there is an absence of international political leadership, civil society should step in to fill the gap, providing the energy and vision needed to move the world in a new and better direction.
We must take steps to prevent further nuclear weapons development or modernization.
So long as nuclear weapons continue to exist, so will the temptation to threaten others with overwhelming military force.
Rather than turning away from the staggering scale and depth of misery caused by war, we must strive to develop our capacity to empathize and feel the sufferings of others.
Japan learned from the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki that the tragedy wrought by nuclear weapons must never be repeated and that humanity and nuclear weapons cannot coexist.
But I think we need to remember that democracy everywhere is by its nature incomplete, a work in progress.
Extreme poverty threatens people's right to life itself and makes impossible the enjoyment of the rights and freedoms essential to a humane way of life.
Humanity has experienced many revolutionary changes over the course of history: revolutions in agriculture, in science, industrial production, as well as numerous political revolutions. But these have all been limited to the external aspects of our individual and collective lives.
The effects of human rights education can be dramatic in awakening people to the value and power of their own lives, as shown in the following stories.
But I believe we must not allow feelings of defeat to take root in our hearts.
It is crucial that we develop real awareness of ourselves as citizens of Earth, linked by mutual and indissoluble bonds. When we clearly recognize this reality and ground ourselves in it, we are compelled to take a strict accounting of our way of life.
No one can live entirely on their own, nor can any country or society exist in isolation.
When one takes action for others, one's own suffering is transformed into the energy that can keep one moving forward; a light of hope illuminating a new tomorrow for oneself and others is kindled.
Faced with stress, too many people feel they have nowhere to turn to, that they don't have access to the kind of friendships or communities where they can easily and openly share their problems and worries.
A commitment to human rights cannot be fostered simply through the transmission of knowledge. Action and experience play a crucial role in the learning process.
All people have a natural desire to be needed, to have their importance to others tangibly confirmed.
Dialogue and education for peace can help free our hearts from the impulse toward intolerance and the rejection of others.
A great revolution in just one single individual will help achieve a change in the destiny of a society and, further, will enable a change in the destiny of humankind.
I have for some time urged that a nuclear abolition summit to mark the effective end of the nuclear era be convened in Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the 70th anniversary of the bombings of those cities, with the participation of national leaders and representatives of global civil society.
People need to be made conscious of a very simple reality: we have no choice but to share this planet, this small blue sphere floating in the vast reaches of space, with all of our fellow 'passengers.'
History is filled with tragic examples of wars that result from diplomatic impasse. Whether in our local communities or in international relations, the skillful use of our communicative capacities to negotiate and resolve differences is the first evidence of human wisdom.
Poems and songs penned as an unstoppable outpouring of the heart take on a life of their own. They transcend the limits of nationality and time as they pass from person to person, from one heart to another.
Men and women who know the brutal reality of war, who know that war strips people of their very humanity, must unite in a new global partnership for peace.
Since ancient times, people from throughout Asia have brought to Japan their talents, knowledge and energy, helping to lay the basis for Japan's existence as a country.
We are not merely passive pawns of historical forces; nor are we victims of the past. We can shape and direct history.
Leadership that exploits and sacrifices young people on the altar of its goals is nothing more than raw, demonic power. Genuine leadership is found in ceaseless efforts to foster young people, to pave the way forward for them.
The crucial thing is to arouse the awareness that as a matter of human conscience we can never permit the people of any country to fall victim to nuclear weapons, and for each individual to express their refusal to continue living in the shadow of the threat they pose.
The problems of aging present an opportunity to rethink our social and personal lives in order to ensure the dignity and welfare of each individual.
In the past, human society provided encouragement and opportunity for people to extend support to each other, especially in highly stressful situations.
You must not for one instant give up the effort to build new lives for yourselves. Creativity means to push open the heavy, groaning doorway to life.
Living here on Earth, we breathe the rhythms of a universe that extends infinitely above us. When resonant harmonies arise between this vast outer cosmos and the inner human cosmos, poetry is born.
A healthy vision of the future is not possible without an accurate knowledge of the past.
I believe that we must maintain pride in the knowledge that the actions we take, based on our own decisions and choices as individuals, link directly to the magnificent challenge of transforming human history.
Divorced from the cosmos, from nature, from society and from each other, we have become fractured and fragmented.
Having lived through the transition from totalitarianism, I am acutely mindful of the need to never take for granted the basic freedoms of thought, expression and belief that democracy brings.
Genuine happiness can only be achieved when we transform our way of life from the unthinking pursuit of pleasure to one committed to enriching our inner lives, when we focus on 'being more' rather than simply having more.