cadzand

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On 18-19 June 2011, the committee ?Buddhism and Society? of the European Buddhist Union organised an informal networking weekend, hosted by the Naropa Institute in Cadzand, the Netherlands. Socially engaged Buddhist networks from the United States, Asia and Europe were represented.
 

The purpose of the brainstorming weekend was

– to share ideas on how Buddhism can contribute to a better world

– to evaluate the links between Buddhist practice and social engagement

– to encourage communication and support among existing Buddhist initiatives worldwide
 

Over 2600 years ago, Siddhartha Gautama rejected all forms of social discrimination and institutionalized inequalities. Buddhism teaches that everyone, regardless of race, colour, gender, sexual orientation, language, religion, political ideology, nationality, social origins, property, birth status or other distinctions, has the potential to become enlightened. The global financial crisis reminds us that social and economic structures are fashioned by human minds, which also implies that they can be reconstructed.
 

No-self, impermanence and interconnectedness are inspirational core teachings that help us (with meditation and other contemplative practices) to identify suffering and the causes of suffering, and to act compassionately, with awareness of our own motivations.
 

Becoming aware of the suffering due to abuse, injury, poverty, illness, imprisonment, oppression and war continues to be a source of action for many Buddhists. Many types of initiatives have been developed in different parts of the world.
 

The participants at the meeting in Cadzand came to the following conclusions:

1. Many socially engaged projects by Buddhists are not well known within the broader Buddhist community. The participants identified a strong need to share ideas and methods. It would therefore be useful to set up a directory and network, a sort of World Forum for Socially Engaged Buddhism, to facilitate global communication and cooperation. The participants intend to support informal networks via mailing groups and the construction of a website where existing initiatives, ideas and literature are easily accessible.

2. As a first step it would be useful to organize a European symposium on Socially Engaged Buddhism in the near future (Summer 2013). This will be the third in a series of major conferences on the topic, following a symposium on engaged Buddhism in the United States (August 2010 in Montague, Massachusetts) and a forthcoming conference on ?The Future of Buddhism: from Personal Awakening to Global Transformation? by the International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB) in India (October 26-29, 2011 in Bodh Gaya). The proposed European symposium will highlight the activities of those who are already involved in engaged Buddhist initiatives and encourage cooperation among them. It will also bring together people who would like to do something and put them into contact with those who are already conducting projects.

3. Finally, we participants at the networking weekend in Cadzand invite all Buddhist organizations to reflect on existing or potential initiatives within their own communities. National Buddhist Unions in Europe might also consider appointing a national coordinator to gather information on local projects within their countries, and to forward that information to the international network. It is important that individual Buddhists and Buddhist organizations take a much more active role in responding to the ecological and social challenges that threaten our planet and its inhabitants. Our situation is urgent and time is running out.

4. We also welcome the various kinds of support you might be able to offer: sharing ideas, informing us about socially engaged projects, promoting such projects, administrative support, help with the construction and maintenance of a website, links to existing websites and social networking communities, etc.

May you who read this letter be free from suffering and the causes of suffering.

May everyone you meet be free from suffering and the causes of suffering.

May all sentient beings be free from suffering and the causes of suffering.


Cadzand, 19th June 2011


v Somboon Chungprampree

Executive Secretary at the International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB)

Email: secretariat@inebnetwork.org

Website: www.inebnetwork.org
 

v Godfried De Waele 

Dana Sangha / Board Member Zen Sangha Belgium

E-mail: wayoftheheart@telenet.be 
 

v Paula de Wijs-Koolkin

Board of Directors, Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT)

E-mail: pauladewys@cs.com

Website: www.fpmt.org
 

v Bernie Glassman + Ari Pliskin (assistant)

Founder of the Zen Peacemakers

E-mail: bernie@zenpeacemakers.com ; ari.pliskin@gmail.com

Website: www.zenpeacemakers.org 
 

v Frans Goetghebeur

President of the European Buddhist Union

E-mail: frans.goetghebeur@skynet.be 

Website: www.e-b-u.org 
 

v Professor David Loy

            Representing the ?Buddhist Peace Fellowship?, Berkely ? USA

E-mail: david_loy@yahoo.com 

Websites: www.bpf.org ; www.davidloy.org 
 

v Harsha Navaratne

Chairman of the Sewalanka Foundation, Sri Lanka

Chairman of the Executive Committee of the INEB

E-mail: headquarters@sewalanka.org 

Website: www.sewalanka.org 
 

v Padmadaka  

Programme manager Karuna Trust, UK

Member Triratna Buddhist Order, UK

E-mail: padmadaka@karuna.org 

Website: www.karuna.org 
 

v Geoffrey Pleyers PhD

           FNRS Researcher U.C.Louvain (Belgium)
           Chercheur au CADIS (EHESS-Paris)
           E-mail: Geoffrey.Pleyers@uclouvain.be

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v Venerable Sithonh Xayavongsone

Director Laos Buddhism for Development

E-mail: bdp.laos@yahoo.com 


v Frank Uyttebroeck

Representing the ?Against the stream Buddhist Meditation Society?, Los Angeles ? USA

E-mail: service@tegendestroomin.com 

Website: www.tegendestroomin.com 


v Vajrapushpa (Ulla Brown)  

Chair Karuna Trust, UK

Member Triratna Buddhist Order, UK

E-mail: ulla.brown@gmail.com

Website: www.karuna.org

v Mr. Zoltan Valcsicsak

Business advisor involved in Buddhist economics with recent enterprise development experience in Bhutan  / Founder of Friends of Bhutan in Hungary

E-mail: valcsicsak.zoltan@gmail.com 
 

v Dr. Micha?l Vermeulen, MD

General Practitioner involved in Human Rights and Buddhist inspired bio-ethics 

E-mail: mmdv68-metta@yahoo.co.uk 


v Dr. Eil?s Ward

Coordinator 2BA Programme, Department of Political Science and Sociology
National University of Ireland Galway, Ireland
Email:
eilis.ward@nuigalway.ie
 

v Professor Laszlo Zsolnai

             Director Business Ethics Center, Corvinus University, Budapest, Hungary

E-mail: laszlo_zsolnai@interware.hu 

Website: http://laszlo-zsolnai.net/ 

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Seeds of Peace

Seeds of Peace : A Buddhist Vision for Renewing Society.

The international magazine, Seeds of peace is published thrice annually in January, May and September, in order to promote the aims and objectives of the Thai Inter-Religious Commission for Development (TICD) and the Spirit in Education Movement (SEM) as well as the International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB). In order to subscribe a $50/year donation is suggested. Personal checks from the UK, US, and Euro are accepted.


Title :
 Vol.33 No.2 May-August. 2560 (2017)
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