Danish Edition of Toynbee-Ikeda Dialogue Commemorates 50th Anniversary of Their Meeting
COPENHAGEN, Denmark: A Danish edition of Choose Life, a dialogue between British historian Arnold J. Toynbee (1889–1975) and Daisaku Ikeda, has been released by SGI-Denmark. It comes in time to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the initial round of dialogues between Toynbee and Ikeda that gave rise to the book.
President Ikeda first met Dr. Toynbee, at the latter’s invitation, in 1972 to exchange views on what Toynbee described as the “fundamental problems of our time”—global, philosophical and inter-personal concerns that are as pertinent today as ever. Their meetings continued in May of the following year and the dialogue was first published in Japanese in 1975, followed by English in 1976 and other languages over the years. This Danish edition is the 31st language into which the dialogue has been translated.
Denmark was the first country Mr. Ikeda visited
when he traveled to the European continent for the first time in 1961. Soka
Gakkai founding president Tsunesaburo Makiguchi (1871–1944), an educator, was
an admirer of the Danish folk high schools and of the shared dedication to
realizing an educational ideal of its founder Nikolai Frederik Severin
Grundtvig (1783–1872) and his student, Kristen Mikkelsen Kold (1816–70). It was
a relationship that mirrored the mentor-disciple relationship between Makiguchi
and his protégé Josei Toda (1900–58), and later between Toda and Ikeda. It was
from Toda that Ikeda inherited the ideal of striving for global peace.
His dialogue with Dr. Toynbee was the first step
in expanding the circle of friendship that he believed would create the
foundations for such peace.