The mission of SESRP is to inspire individuals to embody and perpetuate the spirit of Soka Education; to create a community united in protecting the values of Soka Education; and to encourage a thorough understanding of the philosophy of its three founders.
The purpose of SESRP is:
- To inspire individuals to embody and perpetuate the spirit of Soka Education
- To create a community united in protecting the values of Soka Education
- To encourage thorough and rigorous research into the meaning, possibilities, and development of Soka Education
The objectives of the SESRP are:
- To establish Soka Education as an acknowledged field of research
- To develop a centralized source and venue for information and discussion on Soka Education
- To build and maintain relationships with other institutions to promote Soka Education
Soka Education Pedagogy and its History
“The starting point and essence of Soka education is the spirit to treasure each student individually so that they can become happy and enjoy a glorious future. Education does not exist for the sake of the nation, for business, or for religion. The aim of Soka education is the happiness of oneself and others, as well as society as a whole, and peace for all humanity.”
–Daisaku Ikeda, Founder of Soka University of America
Soka Education pedagogy was created in mid-twentieth century Japan by a primary school principal, Tsunesaburo Makiguchi. During his time as an educator, Makiguchi came to the realization that the sole purpose of education should be for the happiness of the learner. The education in Japan at the time, pre-World War II and during WWII, was based on rote memorization for the purpose of creating soldiers to support the war, and establish a sense of nationalism amongst the common people. Makiguchi actively spoke out against this type of education, believing that children should want to learn, and should learn for the sake of their happiness. Unfortunately, the consequence he was forced to face was imprisonment for speaking against the militaristic government. He passed away in prison, however not before passing his teachings on to his student, Josei Toda, who would then pass on Makiguchi’s teachings to Daisaku Ikeda, founder of Soka University of America.
Soka (創価) is derived from the Japanese characters “sozo (創造/creation)” and “kachi (価値/value)” and literally means value creation. Soka education seeks to empower students to perceive value in every aspect of life. A key element of Soka Education is the quality of the relationship between teacher and student. Rather than exercise authority over the students, teachers are expected to engage in the learning process and grow together with the students. Thus, Soka education is not a mere injection of knowledge, but a humanistic process that nurtures wisdom and enables the individual’s potential to bloom to the fullest. The teacher’s genuine care and concern for the student, and their efforts to nurture the unique character And potential of each learner, make up the heart of Soka education.