Rissho Kosei Kai was founded in Japan on March 5th, 1938 by Nikkyo Niwano and Myoko Naganuma. They saw the need for a Buddhist practice that would combine traditional teaching with everyday application to help a modern and expanding world find peace and harmony. Rissho Kosei Kai translated means – an organization based on the Dharma (Universal Truth), whose members strive to cultivate their character through encouraging and interacting with each other so that everyone can lead a better life, contribute to a better society and a peaceful world. This path is called the “Bodhisattva Way” … compassion in action.
The basic characteristics of the organization are:
*** The Dharma, on which we are based, is in accordance with the essential Buddhist teachings and the Lotus Sutra.
*** Rissho Kosei Kai emphasizes practical application of the teaching for the purpose of enriching people’s lives.
*** The practice of “hoza” or ‘the circle of harmony’ wherein members help each other understand the teachings and their relevance in daily life. Within this circle, all life situations are met head-on with the realization that Buddha-nature is in everything, in every moment; and can change anything from crisis to opportunity and proves that the change of attitude and experience is proof of the bodhisattva way and its power to transform illusion into reality.
In order for people to live peacefully, we must learn to emphasize our common aspects rather than our differences. It is the belief of Rissho Kosei Kai that such a world can be realized not through armed might but through respect for humanity. In the final analysis, all great spiritual paths can be bound together by the common desire for human happiness and liberation.
There are 239 branches in Japan, six branches and nine chapters overseas. Centers in the United States are located in: Hawaii, Seattle, Pacifica, Los Angeles, San Antonio, Oklahoma City, Chicago, and New York.