Peace and Disarmament
Antinuclear Exhibition Held in Germany
The exhibition "From a Culture of Violence to a Culture of Peace" was shown at the Erlangen City Hall in Erlangen, Bavaria, Germany, from September 11 to 21. The showing was cohosted by SGI-Germany, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, the Global Cooperation Council and the local organization Path of Peace of Religions in Erlangen.
Speakers at the opening ceremony held on September 11 and attended by 80 people, were Dr. Siegfried Balleis, Mayor of Erlangen, Dr. Matthias Jochheim (head of IPPNW-Germany), and Yoshi Matsuno, executive advisor of SGI-Germany.
Dr. Siegfried Balleis stressed that 140 nations and different religions are now working with each other in Erlangen. The city has a long tradition of different religions working in harmony for the sake of peace, following the search for a global ethic pioneered in Germany by Prof. Dr. Hans Küng. Dr. Balleis stated that the exhibition was a significant contribution to the atmosphere Erlangen has been cultivating for about ten years. He appreciated in particular the focus on human security, sustainability and nonviolent conflict resolution.
Dr. Mathias Jochheim from IPPNW focused on the chain of violence created by the mindset of militarism. He proposed reorganizing our economy and society based on human ethics and sustainability instead of egoism and acquisitiveness.
Dr. Jochheim also mentioned how happy the late Prof. Dr. Horst-Eberhard Richter, founder of the German Section of IPPNW, had been to begin cooperation with Soka Gakkai last year.
Finally, Yoshi Matsuno stressed that Erlangen can be seen as a model for peace. He outlined the history of the Soka Gakkai’s commitment to peace and stressed that SGI members are proud to work together in spirituality and for peace with other religions.
[Adapted from a report from SGI-Germany; photos courtesy of SGI-Germany]