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April 11, 2008

Chinese Literary Reviews Offer Critical Praise for Dialogue Between Confucian Scholar Dr. Tu Weiming and Daisaku Ikeda

China Reading selects dialogue between Dr. Tu Weiming, an authority on Confucian studies, and Daisaku Ikeda among 2007's best books

The Chinese literary newspaper China Reading recently selected as one of 2007's 100 Books for Good Reading Toward a Civilization of Dialogue: On a Philosophy of Peace and Hope (tentative translation), a collaboration between Dr. Tu Weiming, a leading authority on Confucian studies, and Daisaku Ikeda. The book, which offers Confucian and Buddhist perspectives on creating peaceful coexistence and explores the nature and potential of dialogue, also received positive reviews in Wenhui Readers' Weekly, the Chengdu Evening News and Hong Kong's Sing Tao Daily.

Wenhui Readers' Weekly was established in 1985 as one of the first Chinese literary periodicals to offer serious book reviews. It has a wide readership among scholars and intellectuals. A January 25, 2008 review highlights the book's promotion of dialogue as a cornerstone of peace and comments, "Toward a Civilization Based on Dialogue brims with a spirit of exchange with respect for diversity, freedom and tolerance."

In its February 3 issue, Chengdu Evening News (established 1956) called the book a textbook example of extended and thoughtful dialogue. Sing Tao Daily (March 28) described Dr. Tu and Mr. Ikeda's perspectives on dialogue as important to the resolution of intercivilizational conflict.

Born in China, Dr. Tu Weiming grew up in Taiwan and studied at Harvard University in the USA. He is Harvard-Yenching Professor of Chinese and Philosophy and of Confucian Studies at Harvard University and director of the Harvard-Yenching Institute. He was among the Group of Eminent Persons invited by the United Nations to facilitate the Dialogue among Civilizations in 2001. About his dialogue with Mr. Ikeda, he writes, "President Ikeda is, in my opinion, the most seasoned dialogical partner in the world today. . . [H]e has been the champion of cultivating world peace through dialogue, which entails the art of deep listening. Through dialogical encounters with many public intellectuals from all corners of the world, President Ikeda has helped extend intellectual horizons and deepen critical self-reflectivity of dozens of thinkers of our time."

A chapter of the dialogue can be read on the SGI Quarterly website at: [Link: http://www.sgiquarterly.org/feature2007Jan-3.html]

[Adapted from an article in the April 11, 2008, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]