Soka Spirit
Temple Issue Timeline: 1991-1992

Jan. 1 The Soka Gakkai points out a number of errors in the priesthood’s transcription of President Ikeda’s Nov. 16, 1990 speech.
Jan. 2 Nikken refuses to grant an audience to President Akiya and General Director Morita to discuss matters of the disagreement.
Jan. 6 Nikken lectures on the Sho-Hondo, reinterpreting former high priest Nittatsu’s address on the significance of this structure.
Jan. 12 Nichiren Shoshu, admitting mistakes in transcribing the tape, withdraws questions at the heart of its inquiry. The basis of the priesthood’s attacks on the Soka Gakkai and dismissal of President Ikeda collapses, but the priesthood makes no move to reverse its decision or discuss reconciliation.
Mar. 5 Nichiren Shoshu notifies the Soka Gakkai that lay organizations besides the Soka Gakkai can be created overseas from now on reversing a longstanding policy established during Nittatsu’s term. This is the beginning of the priesthood’s plan to create direct temple organizations (danto) outside Japan .
Mar. 30 The Soka Gakkai sends Nikken a second set of questions concerning Nikken’s misinterpretation of the former high priest’s address on the significance of the Sho-Hondo. Nikken does not respond.
July 1 Nichiren Shoshu abolishes the Soka Gakkai’s traditional pilgrimage system of 40 years and starts a new pilgrimage system, in which each participant needs to have documentation from his or her local temple, thus using access to the Dai-Gohonzon as an enticement aiming to increase the number of direct temple members.
July 21 At a nationwide teachers meeting, Nikken emphasizes that promoting the direct temple movement (i.e. urging members to leave the SGI and join the temple) is the official direction of Nichiren Shoshu. To make his point, Nikken refers to three things: the revision of the rules of Nichiren Shoshu, the temple’s new method of propagating the Daishonin’s Buddhism outside Japan and the new pilgrimage system.
Sept. 27 Nikken’s having built a family tomb at a Zen temple and conducted a ceremony on that occasion becomes public knowledge.
Nov. 7 Nichiren Shoshu sends the Soka Gakkai a document titled “Remonstration to the Soka Gakkai to Disband.”
Nov. 28 Nichiren Shoshu sends the Soka Gakkai a document titled “Notification of the Excommunication of the Soka Gakkai from Nichiren Shoshu” excommunicating more than 12 million believers without any effort to resolve the disagreement through dialogue.
Dec. 27 The Soka Gakkai sends Nichiren Shoshu a document titled “Seeking the Resignation of Nikken as Nichiren Shoshu High Priest,” signed by 16.25 million people.
Feb. 2 Seven priests, including reverend Gen’ei Kudo (former chief priest in Los Angeles ), leave Nichiren Shoshu, forming the Association of Priests for the Reformation of Nichiren Shoshu.
Mar. 30 A group of young priests directly confront and question Nikken. After this incident, they leave Nichiren Shoshu and form the Association of Youthful Priests for the Reformation Nichiren Shoshu.
June 14 A third group of priests leave Nichiren Shoshu to form the Association Concerned About Nichiren Shoshu and Devoted to Protecting the Law.
June 17 The Soka Shimpo, the Soka Gakkai youth division newspaper, publishes an article about the “Seattle Incident,” reporting Mrs. Hiroe Clow’s account of Nikken’s run-in with prostitutes and police during a Gohonzon conferral trip to Seattle in 1963. [At that time, Nikken was the Nichiren Shoshu Study Department chief.]
Aug. 11 Nichiren Shoshu expels SGI President Ikeda as a lay believer (his second excommunication).
Aug. 28 At a nationwide meeting of priests, Nikken states that he never set foot outside the hotel in Seattle on the night he is alleged to have had an encounter with prostitutes and police.
Sept. 13 Mrs. Hiroe Clow sues Nikken in Los Angeles District Court for defamation of character in conjunction with the Seattle Incident. Nikken publicly and in print had called her a liar. The suit is later dismissed on jurisdictional grounds before going to trial.