Peace, Culture & Education
Socially Engaged Buddhism
SGI believes cultural activities and exchanges are an ideal way to develop ties of friendship between people of different cultures and nationalities. Cultural and musical festivals are often central to these activities, building mutual appreciation of diverse cultural heritages, and strengthening people-to-people links in order to lay a solid foundation for a peaceful world.
SGINZ’’s commitment to such activities can be seen in its long association with Rotorua District Council and cooperation in the creation of an expansive Peace Park in Rotorua for cultural events and public usage.
In recent years, SGINZ’s own brass band has hosted annual public performances in collaboration with the award-winning Manukau City Brass Band. These free concerts attract large audiences and introduce the joy of live big band music to a broad cross-section of the community.
In New Zealand, we work together with other CSO and community groups to promote a culture of peace and non-violence. Among our activities are:
Culture of peace and nuclear disarmament
• The establishment of the Rotorua Ikeda Peace Garden by Rotorua District Council
• Touring the “Gandhi, King Ikeda – A Legacy of Building Peace” exhibition
• Touring the exhibition entitled “From a Culture of Violence to a Culture of Peace - Transforming the Human Spirit”
• Nuclear disarmament activities
• Victory Over Violence youth workshops and associated activities
• Participation in national and local Interfaith events
• Roundtable discussion on the Alliance of Civilisations at Victoria University of Wellington
• Organising cultural events to celebrate Chinese New Year and Race Relations Day
• Organising Rotorua Peace Day celebrations
• Annual public performance by the SGINZ Brass Band in collaboration with the Manukau City Brass Band
United Nations Activities
SGI is a firm supporter of the United Nations, with liaison offices in New York, Geneva and Vienna, and was granted consultative status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the UN in 1983 and has been listed with UNHCR since 1997. It is active in public education with a focus on peace and disarmament, human rights and sustainable development, as well as providing humanitarian assistance and promoting interfaith dialogue. SGI is also engaged in various CSO networks and partnerships at the local, national and international level.
SGI President Daisaku Ikeda has published a peace proposal each year since 1975, and these proposals have gradually come to gain increased notice and consideration among peace scholars and concerned individuals.