No matter where we live or what language we speak, food is an essential factor that shapes the way we think, feel, act, and respond to one another. In this milestone book, Michio Kushi presents his vision for building world peace through a sane way of eating.
As the leader of the modern-day international macrobiotic movement, Michio has taught, lectured, written, and worked steadily to achieve his view of the future—a world in which all people can live in harmony with nature and with one another. In 1987, he launched his One Peaceful World society, a worldwide educational organization devoted to bringing about world peace through a new awareness of the links between food and the emotions, natural law, history, and international order. This book lays the foundation for One Peaceful World. It includes case studies throughout history in which macrobiotic diets relieved conflict and sickness. It traces the rise of the organic and natural foods industry, to which Kushi has been a notable contributor. It offers menus and recipes, reference sources, and a wealth of information that point the way to a new approach to diet and thought. And it recommends additional actions that we can take to bring unity to the world.
The book is divided into four parts. In Part 1, Kushi details his early life in Japan during World War II, and his journey to macrobiotics under the guidance of George Ohsawa. Part 2 delves into the cosmological and universal concepts behind macrobiotics, including the importance of yin and yang. In Part 3, Kushi discusses the values that are essential to creating One Peaceful World in modern times. And in Part 4, the author looks forward to a new world government. One Peaceful World is an important and fascinating book for anyone committed to good health, whole foods, and world peace.
Michio Kushi came to the United States shortly after World War II upon completing studies at Tokyo University. Since then, he has lectured on macrobiotics; the meeting of East and West; traditional Asian medicine, philosphy, and culture; and the realization of world peace and planetary harmony. Mr. Kushi is the founder and president of the East West Foundation, Kushi Institute, Kushi Foundation, and Macrobiotics International. He is the bestselling author of numerous books, including Your Body Never Lies, The Cancer Prevention Diet, and The Book of Macrobiotics. As the leading voice in macrobiotics, Mr. Kushi spoke throughout the world on this topic.
Alex Jack has written several books with Michio, including The Cancer Prevention Diet, Diet for a Strong Heart, Amber Waves of Grain, and One Peaceful World. A former editor-in-chief of East West Journal, he travels and teaches in the United States and abroad.
Following Michio Kushi’s death at the end of 2014, his family, students, and colleagues started to gather, preserve, and make available his voluminous writings, audiotapes, videos, and other teachings. Foremost among them is One Peaceful World, a book originally published in 1986. Among all his books, it was Michio’s favorite. As he relates in the autobiographical chapters that comprise the first part of this text, he had been inspired as a young man to devote his life to world peace after visiting Hiroshima just one month after the atomic bombing in August 1945.
In macrobiotics—the universal way of health, happiness, and peace—Michio found the practical means to this end. After coming to the United States in 1949, he devoted himself heart and soul to realizing the goal of a world of enduring health and peace. “One Peaceful World”—a world founded on a balanced, natural food and agriculture system with justice, equality, and freedom for all—became his mantra. In thousands of lectures, seminars, conferences, consultations, and personal conversations over the next half-century, Michio put forward this ideal. After it came out, One Peaceful World was translated into French, German, Japanese, and many other languages. In the early 1990s, it was cited by the United Nations’ Society of Writers when it awarded Michio the Award of Excellence, its annual literary award for his outstanding contribution to peace and international understanding. Previous recipients included Norman Mailer, Arthur Miller, Mikhael Gorbachev, Gloria Steinem, and Stephen Hawking.
As the new millennium dawned, the Smithsonian Institution established a permanent Michio Kushi Collection at the National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C. Michio’s books, macrobiotic foods, and Aveline Kushi’s pressure cooker were exhibited, and a gala was held in the Rotunda and attended by hundreds of people. On behalf of the United States Government, the Smithsonian cited the contribution of Michio and Aveline and the macrobiotic community not only to personal health and well-being, but also to peace and the problems of society. The U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed a resolution honoring Michio and Aveline on this occasion for their pioneer leadership.
Following his death, the Kushi Institute decided to honor Michio by celebrating One Peaceful World Day on his birthday, May 17. By coincidence, this was the day the original preface of this book was penned and delivered to St. Martin’s Press, the original publisher. The Kushi Institute also decided to give an annual Kushi Peace Prize to an individual or organization that embodied the universal ideals he taught, especially health, peace, and sustainability. The first prize was awarded posthumously to Shizuko Yamamoto on May 17, 2015. Shizuko, a student of George Ohsawa’s (as were Michio and Aveline), moved to New York in the late 1960s and passed away just before the prize was awarded. She introduced Shiatsu massage to a generation of students, as well as taught cooking, health care, and philosophy. She was particularly active at the end of her life in the campaign to protect rice, wheat, and other whole grains from GMOs and environmental threats. A gala dinner was held at the Kushi Institute on One Peaceful World Day, and around the world macrobiotic friends, families, organizations, and businesses commemorated Michio’s life and dream in a multitude of personal and public ways. It is our hope that this macrobiotic holiday spreads and the Kushi Peace Prize becomes internationally recognized. In 2016, the Kushi Peace Prize was awarded to Dennis Kucinich, the Congressman, presidential candidate, and leader of the peace caucus in Congress.
For this new edition of One Peaceful World, I have lightly revised the original text, completing Michio’s biography and adding new material to bring up to date the sections on the Spiral of History, Nine Star Ki, and historical cycles. There is also a new chapter on increased violence in the early twenty-first century as a result of the spread of nuclear weapons and power, the introduction of GMOs and SSRIs, the impact of the information and digital revolutions, and global warming and climate change.
While weapons of mass destruction and the threat of terrorism continue to increase, the actual rates of violence and deaths in war have continued to decline sharply in recent decades. From the macrobiotic view, this is directly linked to the change from a meat-and-sugar based diet to a plant-centered diet over the last generation. Since adoption of the Food Guide Pyramid in the U.S. and similar dietary models in other countries (e.g., the Food Pagoda in China), the incidence of crime, violence, rape, cruelty to animals, and other major indices have all fallen. This trend is explored in a new chapter entitled “Diet and the Decline of Violence.”
Several profiles have been added to the sections on Peace Promoters, including Lidia Yamchuk and Hanif Shaimardanov, medical doctors in Russia who pioneered in the macrobiotic dietary treatment of radiation sickness; Dennis Kucinich; Bill Spear, whose Second Response emergency teams have been helping children traumatized by natural disasters and war; and Baydaa Lylaa, a Kushi Institute graduate teaching macrobiotic cooking in war-torn Syria. Many new illustrations, tables, and charts have also been added.
Sachi Kato, an accomplished macrobiotic cooking teacher based in California, has prepared the menus and recipes for One Peaceful World Day. Edward Esko, my longtime colleague and associate director of Kushi Institute, has also contributed several new appendices, including material on Planetary Commonwealth and a peaceful new model of the universe based on the cosmological teachings of George Ohsawa and Michio Kushi. Edward is also profiled in a Peace Promoters section for his pioneer research into the quantum conversion of elements and new renewable sources of energy and materials. The resource and suggested reading/viewing sections have also been completely redone.
I am grateful to Rudy Shur, publisher of Square One Publishers, for bringing out this new edition, and to Caroline Smith and the rest of the staff for their hard work and dedication to this project.
I hope that this edition of One Peaceful World will appeal to both new and old macrobiotic friends, as well as all peace-minded individuals, families, and communities, and contribute to a more harmonious and joyful planet.
Executive Director, Kushi Institute