Prof. Shimazono asked students of the following question.
"If one criticizes the nuclear power, why does one not criticize the car, too?"
The answer is, of course, not easy.
1. We need both.
2. One is bad, but the other is not so bad. It is a matter of degree.
3. Both are bad. We do not need both of them.
Suppose that one selects the answer 2:
If the nuclear power is bad and is to be abolished because of X, the reason X may similarly apply to the car.
What is the difference because of which one can say that we need only the car?
For example, if one says that the nuclear power is bad because it kills or afflicts many people, the reason "because it kills or afflicts many" also apply to the car. (Furthermore, this view presupposes the idea that whatever gives a pain is bad. But this is not always the case, as Kumarila points out.)
Gandhi would definitely say that we need neither.
The modern idea of development is simply wrong and misguided.
Ultimately the issue is related to our view of value: what is life, how to live, and what is more important than the other.
Prof. Shimazono, one of the most famous scholars of religious studies in Japan, then presented various statements by religious organizations made after Fukushima.
The key word is "honest poverty" in Christianity and "less desire, be satisfied with the given" in (Japanese) Buddhism.
Lao Tzu taught less desire.
Dogen enumerated, among eight moral precepts, less desire and being satisfied with the given at the head.
Many religious groups, if they are not too radical or too strange, refer to our want and desire.
Fukushima is not just an issue of politics and economy, but also of religion and moral.