A Person Who Sets Big Goals Continues to Thrive (Part 1)
World Teacher's Message No.294


The Question:

I know that one needs to be humble. However, for those who think they are superior to others, it is hard for them to be humble for they feel that it will somehow lower their status. They also don’t want to listen to other people’s opinions because they think people say things out of jealousy and an inferiority complex. Please advise me how these people can be humble.

Excerpt from the lecture, “In-between a genius and an ordinary person” Q & A given at General Headquarter of Happy Science on January 25, 2018


In order to succeed in life, one must have small, medium and big goals. Small goals should be achievable in a short time, such as getting good grades at forthcoming finals and getting certified in English or something like that. These shouldn’t be big goals in life. These are merely beneficial for getting ahead for job hunting.

Medium goals take a longer time to achieve. These goals should be achieved in about ten years of making a diligent effort.

Big goals should be long-term goals which you want to achieve over a life time. People who tend to be conceited such as Tengu (*) likely have no long-term goals. For those who just work hard until getting into college, graduating from college or getting a job, will have nothing to strive for after achieving these small goals.

*Note: Tengu are Japanese long-nosed goblins with conceited hearts and tend to forever boast of their power.

People who overstrained themselves tend to crave rewards after achieving small goals such as getting into a dream college. But they must know that it’s too early to be rewarded. They haven’t entered the real world yet. It’s much tougher out there. It is okay to take a short trip as a reward for getting into college. What is not okay is to spend all four years in college just playing mahjong. If you do that, your future will be miserable even if you graduate from a prestigious college. You might get some kind of job even though all you did in college was playing mahjong. Frankly speaking, you will be worthless at the workplace. I can predict that you will quit your job and become a permanent part-timer. If you don’t work diligently like others do, you cannot survive in the real world even with the Bachelor’s degree from college. You will soon realize that the people who you thought were inferior to you in study will get ahead of you at work.


Requirement for Genius Is to Achieve a Certain Quantity

It is important to have skills or talents to be a genius, for example, hitting a home run. However, a certain quantity will be required. If you aim at achieving a certain number of quantities, you will not be conceited. It is important to know this point. For example, Thomas Edison had made an immense number of inventions. There must be one to tw0 thousand. I think that one condition for genius is to achieve a certain number of works after all. Suppose you wrote one book and won an Akutagawa prize (Japanese literary award), that doesn’t make you a great writer. Those who are considered great writers had completed a series of work. In order for writers to continue writing, they must have good writing skills and talent and maintain growing numbers of readers. They must keep studying and polishing their skills. To complete a series of work means that the writer must have a long-time goal and keep making efforts for a long period of time. Because they had a work habit like other great writers in history had, they eventually became one. I am pretty sure that they didn’t aim for a one-time hit.


Creating Thousands of Songs Are Gifts From Mechanical and Diligent Work

I am not sure if I can refer to him as a genius, but I’d like to talk about Mr. Yasushi Akimoto, a song writer for AKB 48, Nogizaka 46, Keyakizaka and other Japanese female pop music groups. He must be just a couple of years younger than me and he started his career as a broadcast writer and now doing many other things.
I am writing lyrics for movies so I observe his works too. Frankly speaking, each of his works is not a masterpiece. He writes a lot about young girls’ feelings to make their heart throb in everyday language. Each of his work is not a big deal but he mentioned that he had written over eight hundred songs for AKB 48 alone a few years ago so I assume that he must have written well above thousand songs by now. You can tell that he is not just an ordinary person. He is taking care of many other groups that I cannot keep up with in remembering their names. He writes lyrics for all of them. I thought other people are writing for them but Yasushi himself is writing almost all of the songs for so many groups. He writes lyrics for Nogizaka and Keyakizaka. His songs get nominated and compete with each other at the Japan Record Awards and Kohaku Utagassen, the annual contest between male and female singers on New Year’s Eve. It’s mind boggling.

Undoubtedly, he has a talent as an entrepreneur. Before he achieved that level, he must have been a diligent worker in order for him to write more than 800 songs. Otherwise, no one can do that. He must carry a notebook everywhere he goes and jot down nice and catchy words and keeps on writing lyrics. If you look at his songs one by one, it may not be a work of genius, and it is really rather ordinary. But some of the songs become great hits.
I don’t know how many songs AKB 48 has released so far, and I can’t even list 10 songs. It is a tremendous effort to create more than thousand songs for one group. I cannot emphasis this point enough. There are song writers who make a couple of hit songs but it doesn’t usually last long. You can tell that he has enormous talent because he releases hit songs for various groups and some of them becomes a million sellers. His work style must be mechanical and diligent. I can put my finger on it. There won’t be days that he doesn’t work no matter how sick or hungover he is. He must work every single day without fail.


Quantity Turns into Quality by Successive Attacks

Although I think it’s hard for the general public to see this, he possesses financial function like a bank, which is unlikely for the lyrist.

Back in the days when top taxpayers were announced in public and the top five people in “the other division” or “cultural division” usually included Mr. Akimoto and me (who were competing the third place), and Hikaru Utada, a famous musician, Sen Soshitsu, the Grand Master of Urasenke (one of the most widely known schools of Japanese tea) and artist Ikuo Hirayama, who was the president of Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music, ranked in the top five by the amount of taxes we paid.

Mr. Akimoto had money. Therefore, he could hold a financial function. He created groups like AKB 48 and he had the ability to feed all of them when they weren’t famous. He held small concerts or hand-shaking events at a small venues in Akihabara where fans could see the group consisting of about 20 members (at that time) sing and dance. He made them a big star within 5 years. After 3 years passing, they exceeded the break-even point and began to make a profit. The group became A-list stars and became well-known nationwide within 5 years. He does this one time after another with different groups. He created AKB, Nogizaka, Keyakizaka and many other groups. These are his successive attacks. Even if one group doesn’t break, the others might. He replaces the Center (who gets the middle position in the dance formation and also receives the most screen time in media promotion) a lot and makes them graduate and has new girls join the group. He is using the theory of successive attacks in multiple ways. The person who can create a certain quantity can turn them into quality. This point is extremely important.

A Person Who Sets Big Goals Continues to Thrive (Part 1)
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