Danny and the Visa Problem

[Excerpted from notes from the Woman’s Division conference at the FNCC in April, 2002]

Danny Nagashima* met with Daisaku Ikeda in the difficult 1970s when great persecutions of Mr. Ikeda were taking place and SGI was like a fugitive in Japan. Mr. Ikeda said, “Let’s show the justice of our movement. Go out into the community and prove it!”  So 22-year-old Danny left for the U.S.A.

Speaking of this period, Danny remembers: “When facing great difficulties, we can have an inner spiritual dialogue in front of the Gohonzon. We can uncover our own potential, our enlightenment. It’s like opening our life to the universe and coming out of prison.”

Danny lived in a dilapidated house in Hawaii with rats, lizards, and bugs. Even though he chanted abundant daimoku, he faced two deportation notices and then an arrest notice.

He wanted to get his visa renewed and stay in the U.S., but finally felt forced to get tickets to fly back to Japan. With great disappointment, he went to his farewell party.

Then, at the last moment, a Hawaiian member called a local Congressman friend to see if he could help.

When Danny went to see the Congressman, his English was so bad he couldn't think of anything to say, so he began frantically chanting!

The Congressman was totally perplexed by this “strange behavior” and asked Danny to come back with a translator.

When Danny returned with a translator, he was totally confident that he would win because he had just finished chanting one million daimoku!

After hearing Danny’s story, the Congressman spoke boldly to the immigration officer over the phone, and he decided to sponsor Danny once he found out about his life.  Danny got his treasured visa to stay in the U.S. and study.

The great benefit wasn’t the visa itself but the opportunity to experience the power of the Gohonzon, and now Danny can go back to that experience any time and remember his unlimited potential.  The great lesson was: “Never give up, no matter what!”

*Danny Nagashima is the current General Director of SGI-USA.


Copyright 2002 Gakkai Experiences Online