EdUHK Partners with BMCPC to Promote Life Education for Young People
In collaboration with the Board of Management of the Chinese Permanent Cemeteries (BMCPC), the Centre for Religious and Spirituality Education (CRSE) of The Education University of Hong Kong (EdUHK) organised today (27 November) an online forum, inviting local religious leaders to have in-depth discussions on life education for the youth.
Themed “Life Education for Young People in the 21st Century: How to Orient Their Life Directions in a Rapidly Changing Society”, the forum is a highlight of EdUHK’s large-scale life education project “Life Long Events”.
Hosting the forum, Director of CRSE Professor John Lee Chi-kin said, “Young people nowadays are facing a constantly changing environment and the associated challenges that come with it. In the face of the pandemic, in particular, we should attach greater importance to youths’ mental and spiritual health”. He added that there are four key dimensions in life education, namely universe/heaven, human/people, objects and self. As the ultimate sense of morality within religious faith is a part of the “universe/heaven”, religious speakers were invited to speak on the captioned forum.
Ms Chan Wing-man, Chairperson of the External Affairs Committee of BMCPC, said, “With a positive new image, BMCPC hopes to nurture and support life, acknowledges its positive aspects whilst commemorating lives that have passed. The ‘Life Long Events’ project aptly exemplifies this spirit, and it is hoped that everyone will continue to support our life education initiatives with EdUHK”.
Attending the forum also included (in alphabetical order of the Chinese names of organisations) Sr Dominica So, former Superior General of The Sisters of the Precious Blood; Ven Yin Chi, Hon. Secretary of The Hong Kong Buddhist Association; The Right Reverend Andrew Chan, Bishop of Western Kowloon, Hong Kong Sheng Kung Hui; Mr. Ip Cheung-ching (Chak Ling), Executive Director of Ching Chung Taoist Association of Hong Kong Ltd.; and Dr Lee Yiu-fai (Yee Kok), MH, Abbot of Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple.
At the forum, the guests shared their insights on young people and life education. Mr Lee used the metaphor of a train track to explain the importance of appropriate guidance for young people’s growth; while Ven Yin Chi quoted the story of Yasa meeting Buddha by the river, conveying the nature of life full of sufferings and pleasures, and the importance of developing one’s resilience in adversity. The Right Reverend Chan shared the Bible story of the raising of Lazarus to illustrate the importance of valuing our body and spiritual life, as life is the grace of God. Quoting Tao Te Ching, Mr Ip explained the ideas of overcoming the forceful with the gentle, and overcoming strength with weakness. Sr So used the story from the Book of Genesis in the Old Testament of the Bible to illustrate that God created mankind with love, and we should also love each other. Meanwhile, the guests also mentioned that young people may face various challenges in life, and it was hoped that they would overcome the difficulties with courage and adapt to the rapidly changing world.
The forum was concluded by Professor Lee who shared his personal perspective and an “ABCDE” approach to the subject: A is for Attitude and Action, which refer to faith, positive attitudes, goodwill and good deeds; B is for Birth; C is for Choice, which refers to the many choices available in life, including the choice of performing good deeds. C is also for Concern, which refers to the concern for the four dimensions in life education. D is for Death, referring to the passing of the physical self from the living world, which is also a reminder that there is much to pursue in our spiritual world, both in the secular and religious senses. E is for Experience: young people should enrich their own experiences and listen to a broad range of sources, such as the teaching from different religious leaders. They should also read extensively so as to uncover the world’s rich experiences awaiting them. E is also for Existence, which refers to the act of taking control over our existence, and the strengthening of the relationship between the four above-mentioned dimensions.
“Life Long Events” is a major initiative jointly organised by EdUHK and BMCPC, which aims at promoting awareness of life education to the general public through seminars or forums, research studies and a range of different educational promotion events. The captioned forum is a part of the “Knowing Death and Treasuring Life” series in the “Life Long Events” project. For further details of the series, please visit the website (contents available in Chinese only).
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