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May 4, 2008

Dr. Lou Marinoff and Daisaku Ikeda Collaborate on Dialogue

Dr. Marinoff and Mr. Ikeda (Soka University campus, Hachioji, Tokyo, in March 2007)

Dr. Marinoff and Mr. Ikeda (Soka University campus, Hachioji, Tokyo, in March 2007)

Dr. Lou Marinoff, president of the American Philosophical Practitioners Association (APPA) and Professor of Philosophy at City College of New York, and Daisaku Ikeda are collaborating on a discourse called "Dialogue on Philosophical Renaissance," which will be carried in Pumpkin, a Japanese women's magazine, beginning with the June 2008 issue. Titled "Awaken to Your Inner Strength!" the first installment focuses on philosophical counseling--a non-clinical form of counseling based on the premise that philosophy holds the key to overcoming many of life's problems--of which Dr. Marinoff is a proponent. Mr. Ikeda emphasizes that philosophy exists to enable people to manifest their innate strength, and that counseling--essentially personal guidance and dialogue--is an important tool.

Mr. Ikeda and Dr. Marinoff held a two-hour discussion during their first meeting at the Tokyo Makiguchi Memorial Hall in February 2003. They met again in March 2007 at a combined Soka University-Soka Women's College commencement and agreed to collaborate on a dialogue, which would also include excerpts from their writings on concurrent philosophical themes.

A Commonwealth Scholar originally from Canada, Dr. Marinoff earned his doctorate in philosophy of science at University College London. He developed the practice of philosophical counseling, which utilizes philosophies from all ages and cultures in assisting people resolve problems encountered in daily life. He founded APPA in 1999. Dr. Marinoff has authored two internationally acclaimed bestsellers: Plato Not Prozac, translated into 25 languages since 1999, and Therapy for the Sane, translated into 12 languages since 2003. His most recent book is The Middle Way: Finding Happiness in a World of Extremes, published in 2007.

[Adapted from an article in the May 4, 2008, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]