I write to ask for your financial support of the Caux Round Table for Moral Capitalism to enable us to contribute, as best we can, to encouraging commitments from individuals, businesses, NGOs and governments to the ideas of moral capitalism, moral government and moral society.
Here is what we accomplished in last year.
During 2023, as we all saw a war continue in Ukraine and Russia without a peaceful resolution in sight and a new war, viciously commenced against Israel, another war without a peaceful resolution in sight, our work evolved to ask just what is civilization? Can we be civilized if we overlook ethics and morals? But just where should we look for those guiding lights? In ourselves? In others? In divine revelation? In the wisdom of our cultures and ancient philosophers?
Our thinking, shaped by dialogue with many, has more and more examined the intangible – human capital formation and social capital contributions to justice and well-being.
As the American cartoon character Pogo said in the 1950s: “We have met the enemy and he is us.”
As in its first meeting in 1986 at Mountain House in Caux, Switzerland, the Caux Round Table, during 2023, sought to solve problems through the application of ethics, complementary ethics drawn collegially from various wisdom traditions speaking to a greater common good for the many, rather than seeking to affirm the power and the privileges of the few.
We sharpened our focus on human and social capitals. We proposed a global ethic of personal responsibility at our July global dialogue. We met with Shi’a Muslim leaders, both academic and clerical, in Najaf, Iraq, to learn more from the personal example of the Prophet Muhammad in promising, through covenants, to respect and protect Christian communities. We drew on teachings of the Buddha, with Thai colleagues, to prioritize the middle way of moderation and equilibrium. We asked for ideas and constructive criticism in monthly meetings, both in-person and through Zoom. We used our monthly newsletter, Pegasus, to broadcast globally ideas and values in harmony with these engagements.
We were skeptical that ESG would be only a fad, a superficial articulation of virtuous intentions, offering little of substance that would turn into actual virtuous behaviors more aligned with the ethics of moral capitalism.
Two articles of note were published in Directors&Boards. Our colleagues, Ibrahim Zein and Ahmed El-Wakil, published a thoughtful and thorough book on the covenants of the Prophet Muhammad. Recovery of the Prophet’s precedent in giving covenants may provide a new way of thinking about how to bring about a lasting peace between Jews and Palestinians.
This work is unique. In a real way, the Caux Round Table has few competitors for its thought leadership.
This year, we will continue to find ideas intersecting with good values that can provide leaders with vision and resolve. We will continue our study of the covenants of the Prophet Muhammad, our partnership with Thai leaders in business, government and the academy. We will ask many to share their thinking in the shaping of a draft global ethic to be submitted to the Summit of the Future in 2024 at the United Nations this coming September. We will convene round tables. We will publish books on Amazon.
You may consider making a contribution to fund specific undertakings:
-Sponsor one or more issues of Pegasus.
-Support a regional round table.
-Sponsor a workshop on the covenants of the Prophet.
-Sponsor a book of essays.
You can donate via PayPal (or visit our homepage – www.cauxroundtable.org – and click the yellow “donate” button), by check (75 West Fifth Street, Suite 219, St. Paul, MN 55102) or by wire transfer (please ask for instructions).
Anything you can give would be most appreciated.