Daisaku Ikeda's Dialogue Ethos and Strategies

Dialogical Ethos: Five Convictions & Principles

1. Through dialogue we reach deeper mutual understanding.

2. Through dialogue, we create value, which is the capacity to find meaning, to enhance one's own existence, and contribute to the well-being of others, under any circumstance.

3. The purpose of dialogue is to enhance our common humanity; and "learn to know ourselves and others and thus learn the ways of being human."

4. Dialogue with others enables each to positively transform and break out of the ego-based lesser self.

5. Keeping in mind that everyone experiences suffering, we can communicate with anyone.

Six Strategies for Effective Dialogue*

1. Preparing the exchange thoroughly by studying the life and work of the dialogue partners in advance

2. Creating intimacy with the dialogue partners by asking personal questions

3. Moving toward more and more abstract and general topics

4. Highlighting an important principle, in the case of Mr. Ikeda often a Buddhist principle, which can be made explicit using the interlocutor's own words

5. Using even disagreement as the starting point to finding common ground

6. Giving the partners one's full attention, in person or in writing

*Source: Olivier Urbain, Daisaku Ikeda's Philosophy of Peace: Dialogue, Transformation and Global Citizenship (London: I.B. Tauris & Co Ltd), p. 128.



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