Ikeda and Toynbee: Another way of seeing things…

Ikeda and Toynbee: Another way of seeing things…

Toynbee and Ikeda

Daisaku Ikeda, Arnold Toynbee and Denis Champagne

June 24, 2012, and April 6, 2023

“Another Way of Seeing Things”, is a short film based on an essay by SGI President Daisaku Ikeda – a TFF Associate for more than 20 years – in which, along with a friend and close colleague/collaborator Arnold Toynbee, he challenges media stereotyping and how this can give rise to prejudice and barriers between people of different nationalities and religions.

Toynbee – one of the greatest and most respected macro-historians ever – went to a conflict zone and gave an account different from the black-and-white media narrative of the time and was then forced from his academic position.

This was more than 100 years ago. That the media convey one-sided, politically correct views or outright lies is nothing new – perhaps what is new today is the uniformity, the intensity and the frequency with which it is done.

This is a beautiful and moving rendition of the thought-provoking story and of one man’s courage to go against the (main)stream.

As the editor of The Transnational, I find this story sadly contemporary. Think of how many see Turkey today and think of the coverage/cover-up in the reporting of the NATO-Russia conflict fought in Ukraine.

It seems tragic to me that we have learned so little, if at all. And that journalism as such has decayed rather than re-invented itself for the public service. I’ve said a few things about this here – my experience over almost 50 years with the media.

And there is a wonderful story about the meeting between Dr Ikeda and the TFF founders here.

About the authors

Daisaku Ikeda – his homepage

Arnold Toynbee – Encyclopaedia Britannica

Denis Champagne – on YouTube and Linkedin

One Response to "Ikeda and Toynbee: Another way of seeing things…"

  1. Gitte H   April 9, 2023 at 2:38 am

    Thank you for bringing this extraordinary film. It takes its point of departure in Turkey, and Arnold Toynbee’s meeting with the Turkish people in the 1920’ties amidst a war between the Asian country Turkey and the European country Greece. And the controversial war report he sent back to a newspaper in his native UK that broke with the widespread prejudices in the West against everything Turkish, stirred up by the media.
    Quotes from the film:
    “Any extremity of wartime repeatedly erring scenes of one side coming under attack will incite and enrage viewers. In contrast, scenes of the hellish misery inflicted on the other country citizens will rarely be broadcast”
    “When we stop looking at ourselves, when we no longer question ourselves we become self-righteous and dogmatic. Our interactions then become a one way street, we cannot hear others and real dialogue become impossible”
    “We need to awaken to the common consciousness that we are all inhabitants of the Earth”


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