The 20th Biennial INEB Conference in South Korea

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Overview of INEB’s 2022 Conference

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INEB’s 2022 international conference will be an opportunity for engaging with our partners and network to increase pluralism through expanding peacebuilding efforts, collaborating on environmental concerns, examining effective interventions for those effected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and exploring various issues of concern. 

This year’s international conference is especially significant in terms of timing because it will be the first time since INEB’s last international conference in 2019, that we will be gathering in person. The conference will be a time of celebration. We will learn together more about the South Korean country context as reunification of the peninsula remains a hot issue. The present crisis during and after COVID is important; and the region is facing a political crisis as democracy is moving towards authoritarian regimes encroaching into space for civil society and social movements.

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Please Note: Due to limited space for accomodation, INEB members are urged to register by July 31st, 2022. Registration information for the general public will be released in mid-August, 2022. We thank you for your understanding in this regard. 

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The conference theme of “Buddhism in a Divided World” seeks to further develop INEB’s 10 Year Strategic Roadmap launched in 2017, and to expand its outreach to emerging like-minded social movements. This will help INEB more fully realize the potential of Socially Engaged Buddhism to support social justice, cultural and gender equality, inclusivity and diversity, transformative learning, and harmonizing initiatives associated with ecology and economics (socially responsible right livelihood), intra and inter-faith dialogue, and youth throughout all its activities, which intersects with the major sub-themes of:

  • Peace – As evidenced through the rising authoritarianism that divides societies, and many violent conflicts taking place around the world. Both structural and cultural violence contribute to these divisions which are rooted in the economic issues and social systems that lead to conflict. Peace processes need to address these forms of violence in order for pluralism to be achieved at micro and macro level politics with the potential for nonviolently resolving conflicts, reconciliation and unification. 
  • Planet – The need for an environmental and ecology response with more economic resources dedicated to ending the continuing climate crisis. Increase environmental awareness and active engagement of networks and partnerships that support regenerative practices which leads to mitigating climate change and ending environmental degradation. 
  • Pandemic – During which more communities have become isolated and marginalized, through digital economic divides. Inequality is evidenced as poverty increased with people unable to continue their livelihoods and generate income or other resources. Increase the health status and well-being of persons isolated and marginalized during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

INEB and the Jungto Society decided to host a hybrid conference with some persons attending in person and others attending virtually. 

Conference Goal and Objectives:

The overall and long-term goal of the conference is to stimulate awakening to the profound and enduring teachings of the Buddha that can bring about personal and social transformation through reflection and social action. 

  • Increase knowledge and understanding of peace, planet, pandemic and develop new programs and projects to address such needs, especially in the areas of environmental resilience, pluralistic societies, gender equality, social inclusion, youth empowerment, education for change and sustainable development
  • Promote inter-faith dialogue, exchanges, and collaboration on issues of common concern 
  • Celebrate and expand the spirit of kalyanamitra and time for reflection of individual and community learning  

Tentative conference schedule:

  • October 24 – 25 – a two-day Meditation Retreat at the Seonyu-dong Training Center, Mungyeong for contemplation and to learn Jungto’s unique meditation style and guided by the Venerable Pomnyun Sunim and Jungto Society Dharma teachers.  
  • October 26 – a one-day Temple Visit which includes: visiting the Unmun-sa bhikkhuni temple, discussing gender issues and the bhikkhuni’s concerns, and Organic Farm at Dubuk Jungto Center.
  • October 27 – 28 – a two-day Main conference in Seonyu-dong Training Center, Mungyeong with keynote speakers, plenary sessions, breakout sessions, and cultural events, and more.
  • October 29 – a one-day Peace Study Tour and Public Symposium: visiting the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone, border area between North & South Korea), and Public Symposium – Jungto Center in Seoul.
  • October 30 – Joint meeting of INEB’s Advisory and Executive Committees. (By invitation only)

Conference Co-organizers:

International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB) was established in 1989 in Siam (Thailand) by Sulak Sivaraksa and a group of Buddhist and non-Buddhist thinkers and social activists. INEB operates as an autonomous organization under the Bangkok-based Sathirakoses-Nagapradeepa Foundation. Over the years the network has expanded to include members, both individuals and organizations, from more than 25 countries across Asia, Europe, North America and Australia. From this diversity, an understanding of socially engaged Buddhism has emerged which integrates the practice of Buddhism with social action for a healthy, just, and peaceful world. 

Jungto Society is a community of engaged practitioners who seek to free themselves from suffering in daily lives and make the world a better place. In 1988, Jungto Society was founded with the aim of solving problems prevalent in modern society. Based on the Buddha’s teachings, we learn how to maintain a peaceful state of mind and take the ownership of our lives. Our vision is to create “Jungto,” a land where individuals are happy, society is peaceful, and nature is preserved.

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