What do Buddhism and Islam have in common? And what positive characteristics might Buddhist Japan and Muslim Indonesia be able to offer one another?
In this thoughtful and wide-ranging discussion, distinguished representatives from each country demonstrate that meaningful dialogue between religions and cultures begins with a one-to-one conversation between individuals.
Addressing the similarities of their nations as island peoples, with a shared history of trade and cultural exchange, Abdurrahman Wahid and Daisaku Ikeda agree that the aim of dialogue, like that of Buddhism and Islam alike, is fundamentally the goal of peace.
Both thinkers draw on their respective traditions, and especially the lives of the Buddha and the Prophet Muhammad, to show that harmony springs from an attitude of tolerance and non-violence, which is where true courage resides.
Whether masterfully expounding the teachings of Nichiren, or indicating that a true understanding of jihad is not about religious war but about communicating the truth of Allah, the discussants mutually transform our understandings of value, pluralism and amity.