SGM Organises International Seminar on Dialogue Among Civilisations

Dec 15, 2001 ◄ Back to list

Dialogue Among Civilisations: Interpretation and Understanding', a seminar organised by SGM, was held at the Wisma Kebudayaan SGM, Kuala Lumpur on December 15 and 16, 2001. Officially open by the Deputy Minister of International Trade and industry, Datuk Kerk Choo Ting, the two-day seminar was held in line with the United Nations' theme for 2001, 'Year of Dialogue Among Civilisations'. The seminar aimed to unite the wisdom and efforts of international and local scholars as a resource for bringing about an age of peace where people and nations can co-exist in harmony.

Professor Tan Chee Beng, from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and Dr Soo Khin Wah, associate professor at the University of Malaya chaired the seminar which had as its key speakers distinguished academicians, Professor Li Zehou (City University of Hong Kong), Professor Chen Chung-ying (University of Hawaii), Professor Liu Xiaogan (Chinese University of Hong Kong) and Professor Ge Zhaoguang (Tsinghua University, China). The seminar was attended by over 400 participants on the first day and 130 in the second day's roundtable discussion.

Professor Li spoke on the importance of distinguishing religious morals from social morals when dealing with the challenges of modernisation. Religious morals, said Professor Li, pertained to judgments of 'good and evil' and are determined by religious, cultural, geographical and ethnic differences. Social morals, on the other hand, are universally accepted and relate to making judgments of 'right and wrong'. Other topics discussed included 'The Various Stages of Value in Inter-Civilisation Dialogues' by Professor Chen, 'An Analysis of Feminine Analogies in the Teachings of Chinese Philosopher Lao Tze and their Implications in Modern Society' by Professor Liu and 'An Examination from the Confucian Perspective of China's Assimilation of Western Ideas During the Ming Dynasty' by Professor Ge.