The Parliament of the World’s Religions’ Next Generation Task Force hosted a webinar titled “Interfaith Perspectives on Nuclear Weapons: A Multigenerational Conversation” on 15 August, where panelists engaged in a conversation on nuclear weapons, the importance of disarmament, and the critical role of interfaith and multigenerational action in a world free of nuclear weapons.
This webinar was hosted in commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki nuclear bombings and organized as a supplement to the Hiroshima/Nagasaki Accord, launched in partnership by the Charter for Compassion, Religions for Peace, United Religions Initiative, and the Parliament of the World’s Religions.
Anna Ikeda of SGI was invited to be one of the four panelists and spoke about the role of the faith communities in nuclear weapons abolition, based on her personal experience and the work of SGI. She addressed the challenge that the issue of nuclear weapons is often perceived as something far removed from people’s reality and day-to-day life, thereby resulting in a lack of awareness or sense of disempowerment. Faith communities are able to play a vital role in bridging this gap, by demonstrating how nuclear weapons relate to the core principles of their faith traditions. She also spoke about the power of education in transforming the ways of thinking that justify nuclear weapons and developing creative human capacity to change our circumstances. Ikeda also introduced the joint interfaith statement SGI helped coordinate on the occasion of the 75th anniversary this year.
Other panelists were: Audrey Kitagawa, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Parliament of the World’s Religions; Christopher D. Zefting, Program Officer for Network Development and Coordination at Religions for Peace; and The Rt. Rev. William E. Swing, President and Founding Trustee of URI, and Former Episcopal Bishop of California. The panel was moderated by Kehkashan Basu, Founder and President of the Green Hope Foundation.
It was also the first in a series of multigenerational webinars that the Next Generation Task Force will conduct on the 15th of every month.[Photo Credit: Parliament of the World’s Religions]