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After Fukushima and the Promise of Buddhism in the Nuclear Age

Fukushima (2)

You are cordially invited to an evening with:

Jonathan S. Watts

After Fukushima and the Promise of Buddhism in the Nuclear Age

Friday, July 11, 2014 5:15 PM – 7:15 PM (Open at 5:00 PM) IEAS Conference Room 2223 Fulton Street, 6F, UC Berkeley

As a preserver of traditional culture throughout Asia, Buddhism has often been slow to respond to pressing social issues. This was certainly the case in the aftermath of Asia’s worst nuclear energy disaster in of all places, Japan.  Nuclear energy cuts across several social lines in Japan, and these tensions led Japanese Buddhists to waffle in the first months after Fukushima.  However, behind the vocal leadership of a few mainstream as well as marginal activist priests, Japanese Buddhism is slowly developing not only a critique of the multi-leveled structural violence of nuclear energy but also a vision and a plan of a post-nuclear, post-industrial Japan based on the Buddhist value of “sufficiency” (samtusti, 少欲知足).  Jonathan Watts will talk about this movement and his work to connect it with like-minded Buddhist based movements in other parts of Asia, including an international study tour of Fukushima. Jonathan S. Watts works with the Japan Network of Engaged Buddhists (JNEB) and the international Buddhist exchange center (IBEC) in Yokohama, where he has recently edited two volumes on Buddhist responses to the tsunami and Fukushima disasters: This Precious Life (2012) and Lotus in a Nuclear Sea (2013). The books will be available at the event.

Free Event

Organized by: Friends of Jonathan S. Watts

Contact: E-mail:

Phone: 925-478-8044

Information Links: 

The Japan Network of Engaged Buddhists (JNEB)

JNEB’s International Project on Energy

“This Precious Life: Buddhist Tsunami Relief and Anti- Nuclear Activism in Post 3/11 Japan”

“Lotus in the Nuclear Sea: Fukushima and the Promise of Buddhism in the Nuclear Age”

Directions and Map:                                                               

Parking:  There are various public parking lots and facilities near campus and in downtown Berkeley. Please consult signs for hours and fees prior to entering the facilities. UC lot for public parking after 5 pm rate:$1/hr. for first 2 hours $2/hour for each additional hour Oxford Garage (2165 Kittredge Street) $2/hr. up to 4 hours Evening flat rate $4 after 5 pm.

Photo credit Elvin.

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