Friday, 30 September 2016

Grade 1 Study Exams - 2016. Section D

The History of SGI
All of your answers should be based on the material in Section D: The History of SGI.Write a maximum of 150 words in answer to each of the following questions.In the study exam, you will be set ve questions from this section.

D1  What is the difference between Soka Gakkai’s and Nichiren Shoshu’s interpretation of Nichiren Daishonin’s teachings?
The Soka Gakkai is dedicated to making Nichiren’s teachings effective and practical in the everyday modern world. It has always stressed that Nichiren Buddhism enables every individual, whether priest or lay believer, to develop his or her own innate Buddha nature. It has also stressed social engagement based on the bodhisattva ideal of taking action for the happiness of others towards the creation of a peaceful global society.The Nichiren Shoshu priesthood on the other hand is locked into an ancient ritualistic system, concerned to preserve its authority and jealous of its monopoly of certain sacred teachings, places and objects.Nichiren Shoshu has been more concerned with preserving traditional rituals, with a focus on the priests as intermediaries who are seen to be on a higher spiritual level than lay believers. In this sense it could be said to have lost sight of the original purpose and social mission of Buddhism.

D2  Why and how did Soka Gakkai work together with the priesthood after the Second World War?
Why? For the sake of the progress of Nichiren Buddhism and in the hope that they would help promote the common goal of establishing peace and happiness for the people. How? Soka Gakkai’s support for the priesthood included restoration of major buildings at Nichiren Shoshu’s head temple premises, construction of a new main head temple building and donation of land and a total of 356 branch temples. 

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Grade 1 Study Exam - 2016. Section C

All your answers should be based on the material in Section C: Principles of Nichiren Buddhism in SGI.
Write a maximum of 200 words in answer to each of the following questions.
In the study exam, you will be set two questions from this section.

C1  What is the meaning of ‘establishing the correct teaching’? What is the meaning of ‘for the peace of the land’?

C2  What is Kosen‐rufu?

C3  What is the Soka Gakkai? 

Looks deceivingly simple, right?

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Grade 1 Study Exam - 2016. Section A2

In 50-100 words, and based on the material in Section A – Part 2, explain the following subjects as if you were talking to a friend who is interested in Buddhism. Include at least three different points for each subject in your answer. In the exam, only one of the three subjects will be set.

(a)  What is the meaning of Nam‐myoho‐renge‐kyo?

(b)  What is the difference between a Buddha and an ordinary person?

(c)  What is the Gohonzon? 

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Grade 1 Study Exam - 2016. Section A1

Based on the material in Section A – Part 1: The Life of Nichiren Daishonin, you will be set seven multiple choice questions. The questions given below may or may not be set in the exam. They are examples of the format in which the exam questions will appear. 
In studying this course and preparing for the exam, please read each section of the material carefully, so that you could answer a multiple choice question on it. This section is intended to cover the key events and places in Nichiren Daishonin’s life.
Below are the examples in the study material, complete with answers.

EXAMPLE 1) What date was Nichiren Daishonin born?
(a) 22 February 1222 
(b) 22 February 1226 
(c) 16 February 1222 
(d) 16 February 1226

EXAMPLE 2) What declaration did Nichiren Daishonin make about Nam-myoho-renge-kyo at Seicho-ji Temple?
It is the sole correct Buddhist teaching for leading all people in the Latter Day of the Law to enlightenment.
No Buddhist teaching can lead all people in the Latter Day of the Law to enlightenment.
All Buddhist teachings are the same.
(d) It is the Buddhist teaching for leading people to enlightenment in their next lifetime.

EXAMPLE 3) What do we call the event in which Nichiren Daishonin was attacked and had his left hand broken?
(a) the Tatsunokuchi Persecution 

(b) the Komatsubara Persecution 
(c) the Tsukahara Debate
(d) the Izu Exile

EXAMPLE 4) Who was Nichiren Daishonin’s successor?
(a) Nanjo Tokimitsu 
(b) Nikko Shonin
(c) Shijo Kingo
(d) Nichimoku Shonin 

Below are some examples I created myself. These are without the answers. Feel free to put the answers in the comments

Monday, 19 September 2016


I have been involved in the study movement for a few years now, and I love it.
I have always loved studying, it comes easily to me because I have an incredible memory, I also have the advantage, within Buddhist study, to have been raised by Buddhist parents who are extremely knowledgeable of Buddhist philosophy and I love supporting other people in their journey (ever the teacher!).

I took Grade 1 in 2012, when I created a pretty popular series of posts about exam prep. 

In 2013 I was lilac chief for my local exams. 

Saturday, 17 September 2016

A new life

In the last few years, I have found it increasingly difficult to keep the good rhythm of posts I had at the start of this blog. 

It started off as a way to channel my pain and frustration. I hurt, I write it down, I realise stuff, I feel better. 
I started getting some followers, some questions, and I like to share what I know, so I carried on.
Maybe I haven't needed this outlet anymore, maybe it's because a few things happened that I could not share on here, maybe it's because I have incrementally less time now because I am doing more buddhist activities and I am (finally!) in a relationship. 

Who knows?

I know, however, that I like this blog and I don't want to let it go defunct.

So, I've made some decisions. (I sound like RuPaul here)Image result for rupaul I have made some decisions

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