Sunday, 4 November 2012

Grade 1 Study Exam - 2012. Section D

This is my favourite section. If I don't ace this section, I'm going to go hide in a corner and cover my head with ash. Or whatever.

So, section D contains three sections: D1, D2 and D3. Each section contains a variable number of questions. In the exam, a different number of questions from each section will be asked. The length of the answer will vary, but the maximum allowed for each section is 400 words.

Here are the questions:
D1. Based on the section "The priesthood issue" (only one question will be set)

a) What event took place in November 1991?
The members of the Soka Gakkai were excommunicated by the priesthood under the leadership of the High Priest Nikken Obe, in an attempt to draw more members to their temples. The opposite happened: the vast mojority of SG members stayed with the SG, so the priesthood effectively excommunicated themselves from more than 10 million buddhist practitioners.

b) What happened when members called for the reform of the priesthood?
The priesthood only became more adamant in enforcing the subordination of the Soka Gakkai members. The more the Soka Gakkai grew, the more authoritarian the priesthood became. In 1990, the High Priest Nikken Obe started developing Operation C to "cut" Soka Gakkai members from their mentor Daisaku Ikeda and disband the organisation.

c) Why is the Soka Gakkai so diverse?
Soka Gakkai is so diverse because it refuses o tolerate structures that value one human being more than others. These can be institutional structures like the priesthood over the laity, or they can be racist structures.

D1. Based on the section "The three presidents". (two questions will be set)

a) When was the Soka Gakkai founded?
18 November 1930. On this date the first volume of "System of Value-creation Pedagogy" was published by the Soka Kyoiku Gakkai (the forerunner of the Soka Gakkai) by Mr Makiguchi and Mr Toda.

b) Why was Mr Makiguchi arrested?
Mr Makiguchi was arrested because he refused to display the Shinto talisman (i.e. the symbol of the state religion which venerated the emperor) as the government required.

c) What were Mr Toda's two realisations in prison?
The first realisation was "Buddha is life itself". The second was that he was none other than one of the Bodhisattvas of the Earth who attended the the Ceremony in the Air. These two realisations firmly convinced him of his mission to achieve kosen rufu.

d) What do we commemorate on 16 March and why?
We commemorate Kosen Rufu day. On 16th of March 1958 President Toda held a meeting of 6000 youth division members and passed onto them and his young disciple Daisaku Ikeda the responsibility of the Kosen Rufu movement.

e) When was President Ikeda inaugurated as third president of the Soka Gakkai?
3 May 1960. Two years after Toda's death.

f) Name the two historical novels written by Daisaku Ikeda chronicling the development of the Soka Gakkai and SGI.
The Human Revolution (Soka Gakkai) and The New Human Revolution (SGI).

D3. Based on the section "SGI President Ikeda in Europe" (two questions will be set)

a) When did President Ikeda depart for his first visit to Europe?
4 October 1961.

b) What were the main purposes of this trip?
The main purposes were: to encourage European members, to purchase materials and fixtures for the Grand Reception Hall and to observe the state of religion in Europe.

c) With his visit to Europe imminent, what was President Ikeda's vow?
He vowed that this was the time for a great humanistic philosophy hat would foster bonds between people to spread widely and take root in the human heart. He would blaze way to secure peace in the world by establishing the right principles of Buddhism.

And that's it for the preparation of the Study exam!

Check out the other sections:

Section A1  
Section A2  
Section B (quotes)
Section B (answers)
Section C
Grade 1 Wrap-up 

And good luck to everyone taking the Grade 1 Exams on the 11th of November!

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