Reflecting on the events of recent weeks related to the tragic deaths in Ferguson MO, Staten Island NY and elsewhere, and the many protests that have followed, we as the national leaders of the Soka Gakkai International-USA cannot help but feel the pain and frustration of our fellow Americans, as they respond to what they see as grave injustices in our society and the possible abuse of authority. Indeed, events such as these remind us that we have a long road yet to go to build a community that is just and where the value of a single human life is upheld.

 
The problems we face are complex and difficult, and we believe that everyone from public officials to community leaders to ourselves can play an important role in making things better.

 
As Buddhists we look to the human heart for the fundamental solution to this crisis. It is here that we find the seat of both the poisons of greed, anger and ignorance as well as the virtues of courage, justice and compassion.
President Ikeda reminds us that while we may live in a time of conflict, “the strength to resist this torrent comes from firm conviction in the existence of the Buddha nature of oneself and others. Carrying out the practice of revering others comes down to taking action based on this conviction.” (Living Buddhism, April 2002, pg. 11)

 
With unlimited conviction in the power of the Mystic Law, the dignity of each and every life, and the transforming power of dialogue, we commit ourselves to reaching out to others, listening to their hopes and dreams as well as their frustrations and pains. We commit ourselves to offering hope and conviction to others and to working with our fellow citizens toward the construction of a humane and just society.

Sincerely,
SGI-USA National Leaders