Peace and Disarmament
SGI-Canada Hosts Evening with Director of Toda Institute for Global Peace and Policy Research
On January 4, SGI-Canada hosted an evening with Olivier Urbain, director of the Toda Institute for Global Peace and Policy Research, at the SGI Culture Centre in Toronto. Dr. Urbain highlighted points from his recently published book on SGI President Daisaku Ikeda, titled Daisaku Ikeda's Philosophy of Peace.
Dr. Urbain explained that the Toda Institute for Global Peace and Policy Research, located in Honolulu, Hawai'i, provides opportunities for scholars to come together and apply their learning to expand the understanding and practice of global citizenship. Through these conferences and subsequent publications on various peace-related topics, steps are made toward the development of a culture of peace.
As part of his presentation, Dr. Urbain sang a verse from Michael Jackson's song, "Man in the Mirror" to illustrate the importance of inner transformation in the achievement of global peace. The cited lyrics are: "I'm starting with the man in the mirror. I'm asking him to change his ways. And no message could have been any clearer. If you wanna make the world a better place, take a look at yourself, and then make a change."
In response to the question, "What can I do for peace?" Dr. Urbain outlined a three-part framework: Inner Transformation--resulting in more courage, wisdom, and compassion--Dialogue and Global Citizenship. He stated that not only are these the steps to individual peace but the interdependence of these three concepts is a requirement for world peace.
In the preface to Dr. Urbain's book, noted peace scholar Johan Galtung states, "Olivier Urbain has done the world in general, peace in particular and peace research even more specifically a major favor. He has made the depth of a great thinker on peace, Daisaku Ikeda, available outside Soka Gakkai International . . ."
On January 5, Dr. Urbain traveled to Montreal, and later to Quebec, where he spoke again about his new book.
[Adapted from an article in the January 2011 issue of SGI-Canada Online News; photo courtesy of SGI-Canada]