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Gandhi, King, Ikeda: A Legacy of Building Peace Exhibit

Mohandas K. Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr. and Daisaku Ikeda, three men from three different cultures and continents, have followed a common path of profound dedication and achievement in improving the lives of all people. “Gandhi, King, Ikeda: A Legacy of Building Peace” conveys the themes and pivotal principles in the lives of these giants of the 20th century.

The exhibit panels feature colorful photographs, inspiring quotes and factual information about Mohandas K. Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr. and Daisaku Ikeda. While walking around the free-standing, s-curved walls, viewers can take in the wondrous lives of these three individuals.

This exhibit is divided into sections that present their lives as they relate to key themes.

  • Forging Destiny imparts the importance of mentors and the key influences upon each man’s life.

  • Humanity at the Heart explores their common belief in the innate dignity of humanity.
  • Principles into Action illustrates how each man was able to translate his principles into dynamic action.
  • Nonviolence explores the principles of nonviolent action as a way of life and a means to bring about positive change in society.

  • Adversity and Resistance shows each man’s ability not only to triumph over adversity, but to utilize it to further their growth as humanists.

Copyright © 2005 – 2008 Morehouse College 830 Westview Drive, S.W. Atlanta, GA 30314 (404) 681-2800

Bloomington, IN: honoring Gandhi, Dr. King, and President Daisaku Ikeda

November 12, 2009

For more information, please contact:

Miah Michaelsen, Assistant Director of Economic and Sustainable Development for the Arts, City of Bloomington, 349.3534

Danny Lopez, Communications Director, City of Bloomington, 349.CITY,

Gandhi, King, Ikeda Exhibit at City Hall

Bloomington, IN – Celebrating the lives of three of the 20th Century’s most influential champions for peace, Gandhi, King, Ikeda: A Legacy of Building Peace will be on exhibit in the atrium at the City Hall Showers building from November 16 – November 20, 2009. The exhibit, created by the Martin Luther King Jr. International Chapel at Morehouse College to honor the lives of Mohandas K. Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Daisaku Ikeda, has toured throughout the world and is brought to Bloomington by the Indiana University SGI Buddhist Association and the Men of Color Leadership Conference.

Featuring picture panels highlighting the great achievements of these revolutionaries, viewers will witness the many similarities and differences among the figures. Five distinct sections of the exhibit provide a window into the lives of the men, describing their motivations, influences, and ability to inspire others. The exhibit highlights each man’s triumphs over adversity through peaceful resistance and the positive messages and changes their actions produced in global society.

Gandhi, King, Ikeda: A Legacy of Building Peace will be open for viewing from November 16th to November 20th, 2009, from 8:00am to 5:00pm in the atrium of City Hall, which is located in the main entrance of the Showers Building at 401 North Morton Street, Bloomington, Indiana. A closing reception will be held on November 20th from 5:30 to 7:00pm and will feature a proclamation from Mayor Mark Kruzan recognizing the accomplishments of these three visionaries.

The City of Bloomington is committed to providing opportunities for Bloomington and area artists to exhibit artwork in City Hall Atrium. For more information, contact Miah Michaelsen, the Assistant Economic Development Director for the Arts, at or (812) 349-3534.

The University of Calgary Gauntlet

Trevor Bacque
Gauntlet News
November 12, 2009

Prof. James Apple says he got his love of literature from his grandfather, who left him 15,000 books. It’s unclear upon entering SS 1306 if you have just walked into a small library, storage room or a professor’s office. Then you spot professor James Apple in the corner, most likely reading classical Tibetan literature at his small desk. It’s not that he enjoys his office’s textual clutter, but the assistant professor of eastern religions owns so many books that storage options are few. “I know in my brain I still have enough memory to know what I have,” Apple said as he searches for an old duotang among the annals of history and ideas. “The problem is, I don’t always know where it is.”

The Indiana native is well travelled, but his zeal for literature, regardless of language (usually), kept him grounded. “My love of books comes from my grandfather,” said Apple of his fellow family author. After stops in Bodh Gaya, India, universities in Alabama, Portland and Edmonton, Apple now finds himself at the U of C for his second year of teaching. Beginning his academic career in Bloomington, Indiana, not far from where he grew up, Apple procured a religious studies B.A. in 1993. He refined his focus and by 2001 had a Buddhist studies PhD from Wisconsin-Madison. Apple then embarked on a long, arduous study under Geshe Sopa, one of only two tenured monks in the United States at the time. The topic of Apple’s 2008 book, Stairway to Nirvana, examines the types of individuals on their way to nirvana or full awakening as Buddhas. Typically, Tibetans study this topic for one year, but nobody at Wisconsin-Madison had an interest. For about 25 years the project sat on the shelf until Sopa convinced Apple to examine it. “I remember telling him, ‘This is the most boring topic I can think of,’ ” said Apple. Despite his apprehension, he studied the topic for a year and now realizes how important the time was. “It provides an account of all the cosmological structures for awakening.” Studying and understanding indigenous structures before applying analysis to them is a paramount operation in Apple’s mind. “A lot of the book is an emic [insider], indigenous perspective of what this system is. It’s quite complex.”

With such a advanced understanding of Buddhist traditions, Apple was able to fully appreciate his surroundings when he travelled to Bodh Gaya while teaching with Antioch University’s study abroad program in 2001. Bodh Gaya is the city where Gautama Buddha’s awakening took place. Apple visited other traditional sites of the spiritual teacher during his seven months overseas. India was an eye-opening event for the young professor. “In India, it’s a different world, almost like a different planet,” he said. “It’s a flux, a kaleidoscope of sound and colour.”

The journey to explore foreign countries and their history doesn’t always have to take place overseas, as Apple can attest to. His newest research undertaking is examining past texts from Drepung the Monastery in Lhasa. In his book Apple produced a list of texts, including ones from 11th to 14th century Tibet that were thought to be historical write-offs. Multiple volumes have recently been discovered from Karma Tenkyong Wangpo’s library. Now with about 30 long, skinny, hand-written Tibetan documents, Apple said he has more than a lifetime of work to begin pouring over. “If there was student interest there would be several PhDs, perhaps,” said Apple. “We’re very fortunate to have access to this type of stuff.”

Generally Tibetans don’t wish to share much historical information and Apple counts himself lucky to have read the documents. The ancient text is written in Tibetan, something Apple has been reading for over a decade, as well as Sanskrit. “It was gradual,” said Apple, who first began his journey into secondary languages with French before moving into eastern tongues. “Teachers in Wisconsin said you have to have Sanskrit.” Apple studied six to seven hours a day memorizing inflections and paradigms. “If you really crack your head open with one it gets easier,” said Apple of learning multiple languages. Studying Latin in high school helped the young collegiate connect words and phrases together. Friends told him one language would suffice, but Sopa explained to Apple that Tibetan and Sanskrit are like the sun and the moon — inseparable.

Apple also attributes his love of language to his grandfather, Floyd, who as a theologian studied Greek, Latin and Hebrew. When Apple’s grandfather died in 2002 he left his grandson over 15,000 books, many of which line the shelves in SS 1306 — a cozy, chaotic room where the quest for knowledge seldom rests. Apple said it is always nice to discover books he forgot he had in his vast library. “Order is in the eye of the beholder,” he said, smiling behind his desk.