SUA Students Publish Dear Global Citizens, 20th Anniversary Edition: Founder’s Remarks

June 16, 2022
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Photo of book entitled "Dear Global Citizens, 20th Anniversary Edition: Founder’s Remarks" by Daisaku Ikeda

After a two-year process riddled with unexpected challenges, including inflated paper prices and global supply chain issues, the student-led Founding Spirit Committee published Dear Global Citizens, 20th Anniversary Edition: Founder’s Remarks in June.

The 424-page comprehensive collection of SUA founder Daisaku Ikeda’s messages and writings for and about the university includes several essays; all 67 messages to SUA students from 2000 to 2021; and 11 of Ikeda’s lectures delivered at universities around the world, including Harvard, Moscow State University, and Teachers College, Columbia University.

The committee members decided to create the book several months into the COVID-19 pandemic, when students everywhere were adapting to the new realities of online learning and social distancing. To commemorate SUA’s 20th anniversary, they set out to provide a comprehensive resource for the Soka community to learn about Soka Education, the founding spirit of SUA, and the university founder’s background and philosophy.

Reflecting on the two-year process, committee member Subina Thapaliya ’22 said that reading through all of Ikeda’s essays, messages, and speeches as they assembled the book enabled her to draw strength and tackle many ongoing challenges. “I am grateful to have the golden opportunity to be part of such a significant, transformative project,” Thapaliya said.

Writing in the book’s preface, the committee members explained their goal for the collection: “We earnestly hope that future SUA students will learn about the founding spirit and vision of Soka Education and develop SUA as young founders living a contributive life. It will be our great pleasure if this book is also read by the donors and supporters of SUA and young people around the world, inspiring them to further the cause of peace and justice in the 21st century.”

The volume, in addition to Ikeda’s writings, includes SUA’s mission statement, values, mottos, and principles; the lyrics of “On the Path of Peace,” written and composed by students in 2008, and “The Light of Hope,” which was presented to SUA by Ikeda in 2011 to celebrate the university’s 10th anniversary; a comprehensive list of Ikeda’s university lectures and speeches; and a timeline of SUA’s history.