What Is True Wealth?
Choosing Quality over Quantity by Yoichi Noguchi
Gross national product and gross domestic product are common global measures of economic strength and growth. Not surprisingly, governments and citizens alike think that if the GNP is high, there will be a correspondingly high level of economic prosperity. . . .
Yoichi Noguchi is the executive director of the Niwano Peace Foundation, whose office and activities are based in Tokyo.
Looking Beyond Growth by Katherine Marshall
A longtime development specialist recognizes that its promise has yet to be fulfilled in many places and that the world faces three central challenges in achieving even basic goals.
Katherine Marshall is a senior fellow at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, and visiting professor in the Department of Government. She also serves as vice chair of the Niwano Peace Prize Committee. As a longtime development specialist focused on the world’s poorest countries, she worked for more than thirty-five years with the World Bank and continues to serve as a senior advisor. Her most recent works include The World Bank: From Reconstruction to Development to Equity.
A Perspective for Creating Local Communities
Promoting People’s Happiness by Takayoshi Kusago
This author offers two detailed suggestions, but warns of the need for caution in designing socioeconomic development programs to achieve the goal.
Takayoshi Kusago is a professor on the Faculty of Sociology, Kansai University, Osaka. He received his MA in development economics from Stanford University and his PhD in development studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He worked for the World Bank as an economist and for the United Nations Development Programme as a senior policy advisor. He has published numerous research papers on social and economic development. His research includes development measures and community empowerment.
Beyond Wealth: Toward a “Slow Life” and Well-being by Keibo Oiwa
This author describes a “slow life” as the intellectual, practical, and spiritual pursuit of a new lifestyle that goes beyond the present global economic level of awareness. This is a revised version of a keynote speech delivered at the 2010 International Cittaslow Assembly of Korea in Seoul, June 28, 2010.
Keibo Oiwa (a.k.a. Shin’ichi Tsuji) is a cultural anthropologist, author, and environmental activist. He lived abroad for sixteen years and holds a PhD in anthropology from Cornell University. Since 1992, he has taught in the International Studies Department of Meiji Gakuin University in Yokohama. As the founder of the Japanese NGO Sloth Club, and the author of Suro izu byutihuru (Slow Is Beautiful), he has more than forty publications in Japanese, Korean, and English.
How Can True Wealth Be Achieved? by Kathy R. Matsui
Religion, which equals immeasurable wealth, is one way, but most people in modern society tend to focus their interest on material well-being.
Kathy R. Matsui is professor of global citizenship studies at Seisen University, Tokyo. She has worked with peace researchers and educators internationally at the International Institute on Peace Education and Global Partnership for Prevention of Armed Conflict. She is currently an advisory board member for Hague Appeal for Peace and Global Campaign for Peace Education and board chair of Oxfam International, Japan. She is also active in interreligious dialogue as the president of the International Association for Liberal Religious Women and a member of the Women’s Board of the Japanese Committee of the World Conference of Religions for Peace.>
The Wealth of a Community: A Sri Lankan Reflects on
What It Means to Be Rich or Poor by Harsha Kumara Navaratne
When he thinks back to his childhood, the writer recalls that his family lacked many material things but had a different kind of wealth. If any problem arose, others would be there to offer support.
Harsha Kumara Navaratne is the chairman of the Sewalanka Foundation in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He is also the current chairperson of the International Network of Engaged Buddhists.
Discover Your Hidden Treasure: An Invitation to the Contemplative Path
by Ruben L. F. Habito
As we learn to stop and see in a habitual and sustained way, our eyes are opened to the countless treasures that lie right within our reach.
Ruben L. F. Habito is a faculty member at Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University, and is founding teacher of the Maria Kannon Zen Center in Dallas, Texas. He is married to Maria Reis Habito, and together they have two teenage sons. He is the author of Healing Breath: Zen for Christians and Buddhists in a Wounded World (Boston: Wisdom, 2006); Experiencing Buddhism: Ways of Wisdom and Compassion (Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 2005); and many other works in English and Japanese.
Mindfulness in the Rehabilitation Setting by Jane Perri
A member of Rissho Kosei-kai in the United States describes her personal experience in helping substance-abuse victims recover from their addiction through teaching meditation and mindfulness.
Jane Perri is head of the Rissho Kosei-kai Dharma Center in Dayton, Ohio and previously headed the Dharma Center in Klamath Falls, Oregon. She has a PhD in international business from the Union Institute and University in Cincinnati and other degrees in psychology and photography. At present she is adjunct professor in the Management Department of Sinclair Community College in Dayton.
Japan’s Religions Should Become Aware of Socially Responsible Investing
An interview with Mizue Tsukushi
The Good Bankers Co., Ltd., is Japan’s first independent investment advisory company devoted to social investment research in Japan. In the Japanese market, The Good Bankers Co., Ltd., is a pioneer with the first investment product based on the concept of socially responsible investment (SRI). In September Dharma World interviewed the company’s founder and president, Ms. Mizue Tsukushi, about the religious background of SRI and its increasing significance in today’s society.
Finding a Life Worth Living by Nichiko Niwano
It is tragic news indeed that the number of suicides occurring in Japan has exceeded 30,000 annually over the past twelve years. Shakyamuni said, “All things in this world are characterized by suffering (events do not occur according to our wishes),” and as one person who believes in and accepts the teachings of Buddhism, I am deeply saddened to learn that so many people keep taking their own lives. . . .
Nichiko Niwano is president of Rissho Kosei-kai and the Niwano Peace Foundation, a president of the World Conference of Religions for Peace, and special advisor to Shinshuren (Federation of New Religious Organizations of Japan).
Religions for Peace: The 40th Anniversary
The Message of Islam for Peace and Coexistence
Opening remarks at the Symposium on Religion and Peace, held under the theme “Global Militarization – Religions’ Response,” at the Student Center of the University of California, Irvine (UCI), on May 13, 2010.
Jack Miles, distinguished professor of English and religious studies with the University of California at Irvine and senior fellow for religious affairs with the Pacific Council on International Policy, is a writer whose work has appeared in many publications. His book God: A Biography won a Pulitzer Prize in 1996. He is currently at work as general editor of the forthcoming Norton Anthology of World Religions.
Concluding the eight-day event, the Conference of World Religious Leaders on the “Vision of Mahoroba” was held in the Nara Prefectural New Public Hall. Some 400 people, including overseas religious leaders, took part and discussed the role of people of religion in solving the world’s problems. On September 27, the participants adopted unanimously the Mahoroba Statement, which declares that spirituality valuing diversity should become the basis of a world of harmony, and calls for prayers and action by people of religion for the achievement of world peace. The full text, slightly edited for publication, is as follows.
Farewell Ceremonies – for Things by Riccardo Venturini
Even in modern Japan, memorial services are still conducted for some everyday objects that have served human beings long and well but can no longer be used.
Riccardo Venturini is professor emeritus of clinical psychophysiology at Sapienza University in Rome. He is also the spiritual guide of the Centro di Cultura Buddhista and served as a copresident of the World Conference of Religions for Peace Italy. This article is a translation of a paper originally published in Dharma, an Italian Buddhist magazine.
Japanese Buddhist Folktales
The Man Who Met Enma (Yama), the Lord of the Underworld
The Nonduality of Ecology and Economy by David R. Loy
A Buddhist voice is needed to foster the political will to solve the world’s present eco-crisis.
David R. Loy is Besl Professor of Ethics/Religion and Society at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. His specialty is comparative philosophy and religion, particularly comparing Buddhism with modern Western thought. His recent books include The Great Awakening: A Buddhist Social Theory and Money, Sex, War, Karma: Notes for a Buddhist Revolution
People of Faith Need a Passion for Reform by Nikkyo Niwano
This essay is part of a continuing series of translations from a volume of inspirational writings published in the latter years of the last century by the founder of Rissho Kosei-kai. Dharma World will continue to publish these essays because of their lasting value as guidance for the daily practice of one’s faith.
Nikkyo Niwano, the founder of Rissho Kosei-kai, was an honorary president of the World Conference of Religions for Peace and was honorary chairman of Shinshuren (Federation of New Religious Organizations of Japan) at the time of his death in October 1999.
The Threefold Lotus Sutra: A Modern Commentary (103)
The Sutra of the Lotus Flower of the Wonderful Law Chapter 17: Discrimination of Merits (1)
by Nikkyo Niwano
This is the 103rd installment of a detailed commentary on the Threefold Lotus Sutra by the founder of Rissho Kosei-kai, Rev. Nikkyo Niwano.