News

Inga Boyd promotes friendship through random acts of kindness

posted on 12 March 2014

Inspired by another member in her local Lower Hutt Buddhist group (Te Awa Kairangi) to break down barriers through talking to people on the train Inga Boyd came up with Giftism.

Giftism is a project described as ‘Promoting joy through sharing baking with strangers’

On her blog (http://giftism.wordpress.com/) introduction she writes:

For the month of December, I’m embarking on a social experiment to see if I can promote a sense of joy and connectedness in my community. I’m going to do this by giving away baking to fellow passengers during my daily commute to work.

It’s the festive season, and it’s supposed to be all about giving – right? I’ve never tried anything like this before, but I do believe there is something pretty powerful in the act of giving without the need to receive anything in return.

To make things a bit more exciting – I’m not a great baker. Up until today I didn’t own a measuring cup or electric beaters, and my repertoire of baked goods includes scones, easy chocolate cake (recipe from home economics class at high school) and a lemon cake.

Unexpectedly her experiment caught on 

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Announcing the 'FOUNDATION DAY CELEBRATION: SGI Humanism in the 21st Century' on November 17th

posted on 14 November 2013

November 18, 2013 marks the 83rd anniversary of the founding of Soka Gakkai in Japan. To commemorate this significant date and its development as a global movement for peace, culture and education; SGINZ will be hosting a special lecture by Professor Peter Lineham. The event aims to jointly celebrate interfaith humanism and Soka Gakkai founding day. The event is opened to invited guests such as the Interfaith Council, the Peace Foundation, United Nations Association (NZ Branch), SGINZ members and the general public.

The Theme of the Meeting is FOUNDATION DAY CELEBRATION: SGI Humanism in the 21st Century.

The meeting will be held on Sunday November 17th at the SGI Buddhist Community Centre, 40 Eaglehurst Rd, Ellerslie, Auckland from 10:30am-Midday.

Professor Peter Lineham will speak on “New Religious Leaders and the Challenge of Religion in the 21st Century.” He will talk about Dr. Daisaku Ikeda, Pope Francis and Bishop Justin Duckworth of Wellington using a power point visual display. Following Professor Lineham, we have Rev. George Armstrong who will provide us with his comment on what he deems to be a “True Religion”. 

There are Maori performances from the renowned Kapahaka Group of Kowhai Intermediate School, and contemporary musical pieces from SGINZ Brass Band. There will also be the "Seeds of Hope" exhibition which stresses our interconnectedness with the rest of the community of life and the need to broaden our sphere of compassion and concern.

It will be a day of celebration, a day to remember the struggles and challenges our pioneers had endured, and a day to renew our resolve to strive in their footsteps to continue their dream of a better world. 

New SGI Anti Nuclear Exhibition Launches at Otago University, Commemorating Hiroshima Day

posted on 8 August 2013

On 5 August, about 60 people gathered in the Otago University Library LINK, for the New Zealand launch of the exhibition “Everything You Treasure - A World Free from Nuclear Weapons”.   Hosted by the National Center for Peace and Conflict Studies at Otago University, the exhibition launch was one of a series of events commemorating the 68th anniversary of Hiroshima Day (6 August).  The exhibition was created by Soka Gakkai International and the International Campaign for Nuclear Abolition (ICAN) and was originally launched in Hiroshima in 2010.

Prof Kevin Clements, Director of the National Center, said it was an honour for Dunedin to be the fourth city to host the exhibition, after Hiroshima, Oslo and Geneva and thanked SGI New Zealand for agreeing to bring the exhibition to New Zealand in short notice.  “They wanted to bring the exhibition to London next but I said “Why not Dunedin?” he joked.

Other speakers at the launch were Mr Ted Nye (representative of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW)), Grant Gillet (Professor of Medical Ethics, Otago University) and Jimi Wallace (General Director of SGINZ).  

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11th Annual Friendship Concert Celebrates Peace Through Music

posted on 24 June 2013

 

11th Annual Friendship Concert Celebrates Peace Through Music
SGINZ Victorious March Band and Manukau Concert Band held their annual joint concert on a stormy Sunday afternoon on 16 June 2013. The howling wind and sheet rain did nothing to dampen the spirits of concert patrons who turned out in full force. And they were not disappointed for it was a musical odyssey traversing the globe; from music to an Albanian Dance to Puccini's Nessun Dorma and Williams' English Folk Song Suite, it was an uplifting journey not just across continents but through time.
This is the 11th year in which the bands have collaborated. The event has become a highlight for both band members and concert-goers alike for it is not only a coming-together and exchange but an expression of commitment to the power of music. It is also a measure of the growth of the respective bands as they tackle traditional concert band repertoire and contemporary emerging works. 
The concert is unique in that features players as young as ten and some who have only started their musical training a year ago. The conductors introduced each piece of music and took time to explain the background of the music as well as the band's own experience of it. The focus as mentioned is very much about the power of music to bring people of different creeds and backgrounds together so there was much talk about peace, harmony, friendship and joy. It was also a platform where they encouraged people to take on musical pursuits. And in keeping with tradition, the closing number was a joint performance and this year, they played Michael Jackson's Heal the World. 
It was also a special day for Manukau Concert Band conductor Kathleen Mulligan. The 300 strong crowd chimed in to sing Happy Birthday and wish her well. The evening ended with speeches from both conductors, an exchange of souvenirs followed by delicious refreshments.
About the Bands
The Victorious March Band of the Soka Gakkai International New Zealand was established in 2000 by Daisaku Ikeda, the President of the Soka Gakkai International (SGI). It is a Buddhist network that actively promotes peace, culture and education through personal change and social contribution. President Daisaku Ikeda formed the Victorious March Band believing that cultural activities and exchange are an ideal way 
The Manukau Concert Band is a community band with a membership of about 45 musicians. It has been a consistent recipient of Gold awards at the annual National Concert Bands Festival where it has been a regular participant since 1988. Recently they won a Gold award at the NZ Concert Band Association National Festival in Hamilton for 2012.

SGINZ Victorious March Band and Manukau Concert Band held their annual joint concert on a stormy Sunday afternoon on 16 June 2013. The howling wind and sheet rain did nothing to dampen the spirits of concert patrons who turned out in full force. And they were not disappointed for it was a musical odyssey traversing the globe; from music to an Albanian Dance to Puccini's Nessun Dorma and Williams' English Folk Song Suite, it was an uplifting journey not just across continents but through time.

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