(Sat 6-06-2010)

This is a look at Daisaku Ikeda's book Unlocking the Mysteries of Birth & Death. In general it fulfills an important niche in the SGI study group options. I have seen that sometimes the SGI is prone to excess enthusiasm in declaring the primacy of Nichiren Daishonin's Nam Myoho Renge Kyo keyword approach over the older concepts of Buddhism. However, in the effort to make the book simple enough for use as an early study text, Ikeda may have neglected important clarifications of those early concepts which led to some general sweeping statements which are inconclusive at best.

This is important because the SGI makes efforts to spread the news of itself to new potential practitioners. For those who have had prior exposure to Buddhism elsewhere, this could be interpreted as a slanted argument intended first to persuade and relegate information to second place.

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