Peace and Disarmament
Soka Gakkai Malaysia Hosts Women Peace Conference
On July 30-31, Soka Gakkai Malaysia (SGM) hosted SGM Women Peace Conference at the SGM Culture Center in Selangor State, Malaysia. Some 1,200 women from eight countries and regions--Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Philippines, Australia, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau, attended, representing scholars, local NGOs and the SGI. SGI President Daisaku Ikeda sent a congratulatory message. The event's main theme was "The Role of Women in Building Bridges of Peace through Culture and Arts." The conference aimed to have a better understanding of the importance of culture and arts, to harness the power of culture and arts and put to good use in our daily lives and to educate women on their role in building bridges of peace through culture and arts.
On July 30, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, wife of Malaysia's Deputy Prime Minister, gave a commemorative speech. Guest speaker, Puan Norliza Rofli, director-general of the National Culture and Arts Department of Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage, spoke on "Culture and Arts from My Professional Perspective." A forum by three SGM women representatives, addressed the issues on how culture and arts help in bringing about peace; the importance of preserving the traditional values and culture; and building bridges of peace at home and in the community. An exhibition, entitled "Women Nurturing Peace" was also displayed, in conjunction with the conference, at an exhibition hall of SGM Culture Center. The exhibition aims to portray the role of women in building bridges of peace through transforming fear into strength, embarking on a journey of self discovery to manifest limitless potential, realizing the women's soft, gentle and compassionate aspects of unique character. Friendly exchange meetings were held in the evening at 34 venues and some 3,700 members attended. Participants shared experiences of their Buddhist practice and developed friendship. Highlights of the second day of the conference were the country reports by SGI women representatives.