A Passage to Peace: Global Solutions from East and West
with Nur Yalman
The dialogue recorded here can be characterized as a vital bridge much like the ancient Silk Road, connecting the easternmost and westernmost civilizations of Asia. Through wide-ranging and frank exchanges about the history of convergence in Eastern cultures and their engagement with the West, Turkish cultural anthropologist Dr. Nur Yalman, currently professor of Social Anthropology and Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard University, and Daisaku Ikeda ambitiously envision "a passage to peace" for the global civilization of the 21st century.
The authors are well versed in each other's national culture, language, literature and history within the panorama of Asian traditions--from the Ottoman Empire to India's King Ashoka, religious poets Rumi and Yunus Emre to the Japanese classic Man'yoshu (Collection of Ten Thousand Leaves), from the origins of the tulip to the first coffee shop. Their encounters become the common ground on which they discuss the principle capacity of educational and religious traditions to encourage understanding and empathy at the individual level of interaction.
"Now is the time for us to evaluate not only history, but also science, technology and politics," says Ikeda, "on the basis of their contributions to individual human happiness." And religious traditions, according to Dr. Yalman, can "become a driving force for transcending difficult times, overcoming cultural differences and creating a sympathetic human world." In the same vein, both advocate that the time must come when countries admit the travesty unleashed by their own acts of violent conflict and war.
The diversity of cultures that globalizing trends have brought into contact makes urgent and challenging the question of what are "correct" values and views of the world. Ikeda proposes that it is those that are effective in providing "hope for the peace and prosperity of humanity."
Through the openness of their dialogue, the authors invite reflection, by general reader and specialist alike, on the astuteness of one's own observations of cultural encounter and one's own choice of passage into the future.
A Passage to Peace is also available in Japanese and traditional Chinese.
Preface by Nur Yalman
Preface by Daisaku Ikeda
One - Cultural Resonances
Two - Loyalty to All Humanity
Three - Peace Within and Without
Four - Mutual Understanding for a Better World
Five - Intercultural Communion
Six - Empathy and Our Shared Humanity
Seven - Reviving Asian Humanism
Eight - Global Governance
Nine - Dialogue: the Magna Carta of Civilization
Ten - New Paths for Education
Appendix 1 - The Kemalist Revolution: A Model by Daisaku Ikeda
Appendix 2 - Terror and Cultural Diversity in Times of Adversity by Nur Yalman