Long before it became fashionable to talk of climate change, drought and water shortages, the authors of this lucid and trenchant dialogue were warning that planet earth was heading for uninhabitability. Exchanging viewpoints and insights that have matured over many years of thought, study and reflection, the discussants address a number of critical questions under three broad headings: man and nature, man and man, and the human revolution. One of the authors is a Westerner - a man of many parts, both wartime resistance fighter and leading industrialist, who founded one of the first organisations and think tanks to address seriously the human prospects for global survival. The other represents the philosophical and ethical perspectives of the East - a Buddhist lay leader who has visited country after country, campaigning tirelessly for the abolition of nuclear weapons and war in all its forms. Engaging constructively and imaginatively with such seemingly intractable problems as population growth, the decline of natural resources, desertification, pollution and deforestation, Ikeda and Peccei show that many of these problems are interrelated. Only be addressing them as part of a web of complex but combined issues, and by working together for peace and justice, can human beings expect to find lasting solutions. So while recognising the scale of the challenge ahead, the authors' message is in the end a hopeful one. Man's best prospect for the future lies in an ethical revolution whereby humanity can find a fresh understanding of itself in holistic connection with, rather than separation and alienation from, the planet itself.
Before it is Too Late
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