From May 24 to 26, 2019, central leaders from across the country gathered at the SGM Culture Centre in the second SGM Headquarters Leaders Conference for a follow-up on the “New Dawn Block” target and goals to achieve in the second half of the year. At the same time, they commemorated the 55th year of Malaysian kosen-rufu and the 35th anniversary of SGM’s establishment (also known as “5535”).
On the first day, SGM representatives from Selangor and Negeri Sembilan shared victory reports in achieving “New Dawn Blocks” in their respective districts. The victorious sharing inspired the participants to strive even harder to respond to President Ikeda. Participants also studied Gosho passages used in The New Human Revolution and lessons on refuting the erroneous and revealing the true found in the serialised novel.
As the day’s conclusion, SGM men’s division leader Dr Christopher Boey spoke on the importance of “exerting [ourselves] bravely and vigorously.” He urged the participants to renew their determination and valiantly move forward in the spirit of “many in body but one in mind,” without a single exception.
|Gymnastic performance by Negeri Sembilan|
The following day, SGM General Director Koh Sia Feai presented a report on SGM’s activities in the first half of 2019. Afterwards, Chia Kok Peng, Wan Yoke Ping, Joanne Foo and Vicky Ho Pei Ying, four leaders involved in various SGM’s peace, culture and education activities for many years, went onstage to share how SGM bulit trust and understanding in the community through activities based on these three pillars.
The leaders of the junior division and future division (which encompass the junior and high school divisions) took the stage to speak about SGM’s endeavours and victories in fostering the future. The unceasing emergence of successors in the future division is crucial in ensuring the eternal advancement of kosen-rufu.
The final day of the conference was also a gathering commemorating May 3 Soka Gakkai Day and Soka Gakkai Mother’s Day, May 5 High School Division Day and the 5535 commemorative general meeting.
The day began with a congratulatory message by President Ikeda sent especially for the 5535 celebrations. In his message, he states: “…we must treasure the person in front of us, sincerely and resolutely forming karmic bonds with one person after another. From that one person, we then expand the solidarity of peace and happiness.” He further urged all in SGM to “…advance joyously on good terms with each other, upholding ‘the world’s foremost unity.’ As good citizens and exemplary members of society, please continue to expand further the solidarity of trust and friendship in your workplaces and local districts while carrying out activities that promote peace and contribute to society.”
The SGM Hibiscus Award was presented to leaders who have made valiant contributions to SGM.
|Fife-and-drum corps twirlers||Multiraces traditional dance by Johor|
On the final day of the conference, University Putra Malaysia (UPM) alumni Looi Chee Choong (who is SGM men’s division secretary) and Wendy Yee (women’s division vice-leader) shared their memories during their student division days. Even though those days were full of hardship and challenges, they are still grateful for all they have experienced, in particular the warmth of their fellow members and their seniors’ efforts in fostering them. In 2000, UPM conferred an honorary doctorate upon President Ikeda.
Mr Koh then took the stage and stated in his speech that 5535 will only have significance if we learn from the past and look towards the future. He urged participants to engrave President Ikeda’s eternal guidelines for Malaysia in their lives and strengthen the good traditions within SGM. He expressed hopes that the youth will inherit the spirit of their seniors and expand the path of Malaysian kosen-rufu and create new heights. He also proposed that SGM adopts “the world foremost unity” as the new eternal guideline for SGM. This phrase was quoted in President Ikeda’s speech in Malaysia during his second visit here in 2000 and in the 5535 congratulatory message.
Inspired by Mr Koh’s speech, Khoo Wan Ting, a young women’s division leader, made a determination to succeed the spirit of our seniors and foster more capable people. Ng Chan Khong of the young men’s division resolved to appreciate the people he meets and achieve the New Dawn Block in his area based on unity of the four divisions.
Finally, culture group members from several states presented a commemorative culture performance to show their gratitude towards the SGM pioneers and express their determination to be the protagonists of the future.
Next year, 2020, marks the 20th anniversary of President Ikeda’s second visit to Malaysia and the 90th anniversary of the Soka Gakkai. Towards this profoundly significant year, the participants of this conference vowed to construct a new era in which SGM would be a great beacon of hope and peace.