“On Jazz, Buddhism, and a Joyful Life”

Jazz icons Hancock and Shorter launch their book, co-authored with SGI President Ikeda.

Launch—Jazz legends Wayne Shorter (front) and Herbie Hancock promote their new book, co-authored by Daisaku Ikeda, Reaching Beyond, New York, April 25. Photo: Masayuki Tsujiumura.

Photo: Masayuki Tsujiumura.

NEW YORK, April 25—“The excitement, energy and pure happiness of the members was really something—a family affair that lit up a dark rainy night,” described one audience member.

Nearly 700 SGI-USA members joined jazz legends Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter at the SGI-USA New York Culture Center for the launch of their newly published book, coauthored with Daisaku Ikeda, titled Reaching Beyond: Improvisations on Jazz, Buddhism, and a Joyful Life.

Photo: Masayuki Tsujiumura.

Together, they explore the origins, development and international influence of jazz. Reflecting on their lives and careers, Mr. Hancock and Mr. Shorter share the lessons they have learned from their musical mentors, including Miles Davis and Art Blakey, and how the Buddhist philosophy they’ve learned from SGI President Ikeda over the past 40 years deeply resonates with the emancipatory spirit of jazz.

These wide-ranging conversations include such thought-provoking topics as:

• Music’s mission for peace in a time of discord
• The importance of the artist’s spiritual growth
• The Buddhist concept of “changing poison into medicine”
• Ways to make the “ideal America” a reality for everyone.

The e-book is available for $7.99 at online bookstores, such as The hardcopy is $12.95 at SGI-USA bookstores and online and at

“It Is the Heart . . .”