20 Nov 2018 The Secret Formula Behind My Success
Tan Soon Hong, Eric
Young Men Division Chapter Leader
I grew up learning from my parents that I could achieve anything through effort and perseverance. Hence, I viewed religion simply as something for those who cannot control their own fate. I was first introduced to Nichiren Buddhism by my wife but back then, I would simply chant to please her or only when I was free.
After some time, I decided to start my own business as a side-line. As circumstances in the business became more challenging and I was faced with numerous deadlocks, I finally decided to seriously practise Nichiren Buddhism.
In the initial set up of my business, I encountered many problems and I was on the verge of giving up until I came across President Ikeda’s guidance: “Defeat is not failing to fulfil your goals, but rather giving up on yourself in the midst of difficulty. Those who persist in pursuit of their dreams, no matter what the hurdles, are winners in life.”
With single-minded determination and fervent daimoku, I could feel the Mystic Law pulsating within my life. The greatest victory that I gained from that episode was realising that I have what it takes to overcome my own fundamental darkness—that is taking full responsibility for my shortcomings rather than blaming others or the environment.
In 2010, I was nominated for the Entrepreneur of the Year award. When asked about the “secret formula” behind my success, I attributed it to having a great mentor in life, President Ikeda.
Another prime point in my faith happened when my SSA friends and I went on a three-week expedition trip to China to help in a village school. We encountered many challenges from the very first day. It was the hardest experience I have ever encountered, with every ounce of my willpower was being tested. Nevertheless, the expedition ended with great success and I would never forget the indescribable happiness overflowing within me.
It dawned on me then that what I needed to build was not a business but a life that could truly inspire others to chant Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. I was convinced that my human revolution to take the lead in practising for others would naturally open up the right path for my life and my business.
(Adapted from the Young Men Division’s testimony book Hero of the World)