All of Rissho Kosei-kai’s peace activities are based on the teachings of the Lotus Sutra: Truth is universal and all religions are manifestations of that truth; all life springs from the same source and thus all people are related and belong to one family. The organization’s dedication to dialogue and cooperation with other religions is a natural corollary of the teachings. This is why, ever since its founding, Rissho Kosei-kai has sought to cooperate with other religions. Rissho Kosei-kai believes that true peace can come about only through cooperation among religions, and leaders as well as members of Rissho Kosei-kai are dedicated to working for a world in which people of all persuasions will be linked by bonds of friendship.
Religions for Peace
Religions for Peace (RfP), formerly called World Conference on Religion and Peace (WCRP), is one of the largest interreligious networks promoting collaboration among religious organizations around the world. RfP strives for peace building, human development, social justice and harmony, and environmental protection. RfP’s global multi-religious network consists of six regional interreligious groups including more than ninety national councils.
Rissho Kosei-kai has been involved with RfP’s activities for world peace since its inception. In the 1960s Rev. Nikkyo Niwano, founder of Rissho Kosei-kai, strove to establish the World Conference of Religions for Peace with other religious leaders in Japan and the world over. In 1970 the first world assembly of WCRP convened in Kyoto, Japan. World religious leaders met to share their goals and contribute to world peace in the spirit of interreligious cooperation. In 1973, Religions for Peace was granted Consultative Status, Category II, by the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
RfP has continued to hold its periodic world assembly: the second one at Louvain, Belgium, in 1974; the third at Princeton, USA, in 1979; the fourth at Nairobi, Kenya, in 1984; the fifth at Melbourne, Australia, in 1989; the sixth at Vatican and Riva del Grade, Italy, in 1994; the seventh at Amman, Jordan, in 1999; the eighth at Kyoto, Japan, 2006; the ninth at Vienna, Austria, in 2013; and the tenth at Lindau, Germany, in 2019.
For further information about the WCRP, visit http://www.religionsforpeace.org/
Asian Conference on Religions for Peace
Rissho Kosei-kai has been active in collaborating with Religions for Peace Asia, also known as Asian Conference of Religions for Peace (ACRP), or the interreligious regional body in Asia of Religions for Peace (RfP). The diverse religious communities of ACRP share concerns such as peacemaking, social justice, sustainable development, environmental protection, arms reduction, human rights, and gender equality. ACRP is dedicated to addressing these issues by translating the community’s common concerns into concrete actions.
ACRP originated in the second world assembly of Religions for Peace, which took place in Leuven, Belgium, in September 1974. Participants from Asia desired to hold a conference similar to the RfP world assembly but dedicated to their own region so that they could revive the religious values and cultural heritage of Asia, as well as address various problems in the region. Thus in 1976, the first conference of ACRP convened in Singapore.
Since the first convention (ACRP I), Asian religious leaders have met at New Delhi, India, in 1981 (ACRP II); at Seoul, South Korea, in 1986 (ACRP III); at Katmandu, Nepal, in 1991 (ACRP IV); at Ayutthaya, Thailand, in 1996 (ACRP V); at Yogyakarta, Indonesia, in 2002 (ACRP VI); Manila, the Philippines, in 2008 (ACRP VII); and at Incheon, the Republic of Korea, in 2014 (ACRP VIII).
For further information, visit https://rfpasia.org/
International Association for Religious Freedom
The International Association for Religious Freedom (IARF), founded in Boston in 1900, is the world’s oldest international interfaith group. In 1972, IARF was granted consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). Presently, its seventy-five-member organizations in twenty-seven countries include participants from many religious traditions, including Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Shinto, and Zoroastrianism. Through its various programs and activities, the interfaith association promotes openness to diversity, religious tolerance, philanthropy, and solidarity among people of all religious traditions.
In 1969 Rissho Kosei-kai joined IARF. Recently, in 2014, we participated in the thirty-fourth World Congress in Birmingham, England, where about three hundred delegates gathered from thirty countries. We work continually to implement the IARF’s values together with members of the Japan chapter.