June 6, 2016
English Edition of Abueva–Ikeda Dialogue Published
Dialogue between Dr. Abueva and Mr. Ikeda
QUEZON, Philippines: An English edition of a dialogue between Dr. José V. Abueva, founding president of Kalayaan College in the Philippines, and Daisaku Ikeda, was recently published. In Global Citizenship: Toward a Civilization of Wisdom, Love and Peace, the authors discuss issues and insights on tolerance, education and peacebuilding, as well as the principles of "non-killing" and a world without war. Their dialogue was originally serialized in the Japanese monthly commentary Daisanbunmei from June 2012 to August 2013.
Before establishing Kalayaan College in 2000, Dr. Abueva headed the United Nations University at its headquarters in Tokyo and then served as president of the University of the Philippines, the nation's premier institute of higher learning. He also assisted former Philippine President Corazon Aquino in the facilitation of peace talks between the government and the Moro National Liberation Front.
In the preface, Dr. Abueva describes four areas he has in common with Mr. Ikeda: (1) they were both born in 1928; (2) their commitment to universal peace and nonkilling; (3) their love for culture and efforts to promote international understanding through cultural exchange and (4) their dedication to fostering global citizenship. In the dialogue, the authors discuss the history of relations between the Philippines and Japan, including Japan's invasion and occupation of the Philippines during World War II. Dr. Abueva recounts the deaths of his parents at the hands of occupying Japanese troops when he was 16 and how he overcame any sense of enmity toward the Japanese through his Christian faith. The two also examine their beliefs in tolerance and nonviolence in building peace, starting from the family and on to local communities and the entire world.
Dr. Abueva first met Mr. Ikeda in 1990, with the two meeting for a total of seven times over the years. The discussions they engaged in face to face and through written correspondence form the framework of their published work.
[Adapted from an article in the June 9, 2015, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]