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HOME > Current Focus > Previous Years > Articles & Essay 2009

Articles & Essays: 2009

Humanizing Our Lives, Humanizing Our World

An Introduction to the Center's 2009 Theme One of Center founder Daisaku Ikeda’s enduring messages is the need to build a new humanism for a new era. The new humanism Ikeda advocates is not just a philosophy, but also a way of being in the world. It is founded, on the one hand, upon a belief in the infinite potential of each human being, and, on the other, in a desire to contribute to global well being. MORE >>


  • "John Dewey, Daisaku Ikeda, and the Quest for a New Humanism" A capacity crowd gathered at the Center on November 14 for this year's Ikeda Forum. Top Dewey scholars converged to explore cross-cultural resonance between the naturalistic humanism of John Dewey and the Buddhist humanism of Daisaku Ikeda. The article posted here consitutes our initial report on the event. Please check back in mid-December for expanded coverage. MORE >>
  • "Buddhist Humanism and Spiritual Democracy" This is a transcript of Steven Rockefeller's opening remarks at the 6th Ikeda Forum. In this brief lecture, Professor Rockefeller compares and contrasts the humanistic philosophies of Daisaku Ikeda and John Dewey, showing how they invoke ideals of Buddhism and democracy, respectively, to envision the development of communities that are increasingly cooperative, creative, and just. MORE >>


  • "In Dialogue with Nature, Oneself, and Others" On September 24, Ronald A. Bosco and Joel Myerson came to the Center to discuss their new book, co-authored with Daisaku Ikeda, Creating Waldens: An East-West Conversation on the American Renaissance. During the event, the authors encouraged all of us, especially our young people to emulate the reverence for nature, poetry, and self-knowledge so valued by Emerson, Thoreau, and Whitman. MORE >>
  • "The Flowering of the Greater Self: A Message from Daisaku Ikeda" This message was written especially for the September 24 author event celebrating the publication of Creating Waldens. In the message, Daisaku Ikeda argues that though dialogue and the development of "self culture," all of us can cultivate the larger self that is capable of empathetic engagement with others, despite our seeming differences. MORE >>


  • "Empathy Is What Makes Us Human" In this March 2009 interview with the Center, Professor Nur Yalman of Harvard University discusses many of the values and ideas that animated his recent dialogue with Daisaku Ikeda, A Passage to Peace: Global Solutions from East and West. MORE >>
  • "Dialogue In a Divided World" In February, Professor Nur Yalman invited several of his Harvard colleagues to the Center to engage in a discussion on topics from his recently published dialogue with Daisaku Ikeda. During the two-hour session, participants explored the challenges of pursuing dialogue in a world marked by severe divisions of power and ideology. MORE >>


  • "True Books in a True Spirit" In this essay, Professor Anita Patterson of Boston University shares her vision of literature as a means for engaging students at a level deeper than that of mere information, one which considers the interior dimensions of learning. The essay is based upon Professor Patterson's own experience reading and teaching the literature of the American Renaissance, and is the final article in the Center's 2009 investigation. MORE >>


  • "Creativity and Global Flourishing" In this essay, written as an original contribution to the Ikeda Center’s 2009 investigation, Professor John Berthrong of Boston University reveals how creativity has functioned in human thought and action. Placing the concept in historical and cross-cultural contexts (comparing specifically with the classical Chinese tradition), the author explores both the limitations and the potential of creativity as a force for human and global flourishing. MORE >>


  • Human Connection in the Age of "Virtualization" This excerpt from Daisaku Ikeda's 2004 Peace Proposal to the United Nations, Inner Transformations: Creating a Global Groundswell for Peace, highlights some of Ikeda's thoughts on the challenge of maintaining core human attributes such as empathy and compassion in a time when so much of our experience of "reality" is mediated and/or "virtualized." MORE >>


See articles and essays from our 2008 focus, "Understanding Death, Appreciating Life."



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Ikeda Center for Peace, Learning, and Dialogue
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