Lay religious and political group associated with the Buddhist sect Nichiren-sho-shu (see Nichiren Buddhism). The most successful of Japan's new religious movements of the 20th century, it draws on the 13th-century teachings of Nichiren. Like other movements in Nichiren Buddhism, it takes the Lotus Sutra as its chief scripture. Founded in 1930, Soka-gakkai came to prominence in the later 20th century, eventually developing a membership of over 6 million. In 1964 it established the Komeito (Clean Government Party), which by the 1980s was Japan's third-largest political party. It also conducts educational and cultural activities.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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