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To celebrate the publication of "Hope Is a Decision," a new collection of Daisaku Ikeda's essays, we asked co-editor of the volume Jeff Farr to share what he considers the main components of Daisaku Ikeda's philosophy of hope. In his essay, Farr shares this quote from Mr. Ikeda:

“Sometimes, it may be hard to see where—or how—to begin. But we cannot be paralyzed by despair. We must each take action toward the goals we have set and in which we believe. Rather than passively accepting things as they are, we must embark on the challenge of creating a new...

Shaping a New Society, an extended dialogue between Lawrence J. Lau and Daisaku Ikeda, is a lucid examination of the components of a peaceful, flourishing twenty-first century world. The book opens with an exploration of the financial challenges and opportunities of our time, including close analysis of lessons to be learned from the 2008 financial crisis and keys for shared prosperity across East Asia. These discussions are rounded out by conversations focused on the attributes of successful humanistic higher education, a topic of intimate knowledge and concern for both authors....

The introduction to Stephen Gould's new essay on Daisaku Ikeda's 2017 Peace Proposal includes these observations on Ikeda's vision of global citizenship:

Mr. Ikeda advances the idea that educating young people for global citizenship can create a desire in youth to help others and activate the potential of youth to do good, and that their actions as global citizens can bring about global change, end suffering, and restore hope. He believes that educating for global citizenship contributes to greater understanding of others and can help counterbalance the...

Soka seminar thumb

The field of soka education studies took a big step forward this June. That’s when fourteen education scholars gathered to discuss how the practice of soka, or value-creating, education can revitalize US education. The seminar was moderated by Jason Goulah, Director of the Institute for Daisaku Ikeda Studies in Education at DePaul University. He led participants in an exploration of first, how Soka education can uniquely address the most pressing issues in contemporary education, and second, the related question of how it intersects with each scholar’s individual research interests. And...

Hope Is a Decision: Selected Essays of Daisaku Ikeda asks a fundamental question: How do we remain optimistic when the world seems to be falling apart around us? In these newly-published essays, representing several decades of Daisaku Ikeda's writings, the reader is invited on an inspirational journey to find answers and hope in troubled times. The book includes incisive commentaries on terrorism, good and evil, and aging and death that provide a new perspective on approaching the world with hope. The lyrical reflections on poetry and friendship highlight how such spiritual...

In the intensely polarized United States of early 2017, it’s easy to find oneself reacting quickly and with outrage to any number of unfolding events. Indeed, it’s become a default position for many of us, both left and right. In her dialogue with Boston-area university students held at the Ikeda Center on April 12, 2017, Anita Patterson of Boston University argued that deep engagement with literature offers unique, even practical benefits for those looking to transcend our pattern of unthinking reaction. Read the...

Patterson Seminar

On April 12th the Ikeda Center hosted a seminar featuring Anita Patterson (right), Professor of English at Boston University, in dialogue with a dozen Boston-area university students. The topic was "The Role of Literature in Times of Division." In her introduction, Dr. Patterson said:"It’s been my experience that students thrive in classrooms where they don’t feel rushed, and we can dwell together on the meaning of a phrase or the depth of a writer’s insight. Ideally, the literature classroom is a place we all take our time arriving at the satisfactions of reading. We learn, in this...

Perhaps the only thing that various factions across the US might agree on now is that we can't agree on anything; that we are culturally and politically polarized to an extent not experienced in many decades, perhaps since the 60s. It doesn't help matters that the president himself is a polarizing figure of the first order. Center founder Daisaku Ikeda often remarks that when we arrive at an impasse — and certainly we are at an impasse — the best choice is to return to our roots and look at our original motivations. From a Buddhist perspective this means looking closely at one's self — as...

Early in his "Beyond Vietnam" speech, delivered at Riverside Church in New York City on April 4, 1967, Martin Luther King Jr. explained why he could not restrict his efforts for peace, justice, and democracy to those that he and his compatriots had been pursuing in the United States for more than a decade. (Read the whole speech here.) Not least, as both a Christian and a Nobel Peace laureate, he felt an obligation to speak up for all those who suffer. Here is an...

Synopsis for "The Global Solidarity of Youth: Ushering in a New Era of Hope"

Proposal submitted to the United Nations by Daisaku Ikeda, February 2017

Read the full proposal here

Sixty years have passed since my mentor, second Soka Gakkai president Josei Toda (1900–58), issued his declaration calling for the prohibition and abolition of nuclear weapons. At the core of his thinking was a vision of global citizenship rooted in the philosophy of respect for life’...

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