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Vesak 2019: Buddhist philosophy, ethics education discussed

 Vietnamese Scholars, Buddhist dignitaries and followers highlighted the use of Buddhist philosophy as an approach to ethics education across the globe at a forum held in Ha Nam province on May 11.

The panel discussion, themed "Buddhist Approach to Global Education in Ethics", forms part of activities of the UN Day of Vesak 2019 that is underway in Tam Chuc Pagoda in Kim Bang district, the northern province of Ha Nam until May 14.

At the event, Most Venerable Thich Thanh Quyet, Head of the Vietnam Buddhism Academy in Hanoi, expressed concerns over recent social crises, saying: “given the unsettled society with numerous crises nowadays, global educations in ethics through Buddhist philosophy is the key to bring about peace for all people."

Delegates shared their knowledge and ideas on applying Buddhist philosophy in ethics education worldwide and in Vietnam. They reiterated education helps young people develop their conscience, behave properly and preserve traditional ethics values amid the global integration.

For his part, Venerable Thich Hue Dao from the Vietnam Buddhist Research Institute underlined the introduction of Buddhist moral philosophy for the sustainable development of Vietnam.

“In the light of Buddha’s teachings, Buddhist philosophy teaches people to help each other and have compassions with others. This lays a foundation for a sustainable society,” he said.

Meanwhile, Nguyen Thi Minh Hai from An Giang University, the Mekong Delta province of An Giang suggested relevant authorities, Buddhist organisations and institutions take advantage of the achievements of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to spread the Buddhist goodwill to more people, thus improving morality while curbing conflicts and social evils worldwide.

Delegates also brought on international lessons and experience in applying Buddhist philosophy in education to change social behaviors in many countries, suggesting the practice be applied in Vietnam.

The 16th United Nations Day of Vesak 2019 brings together 1,650 delegates from 112 countries and territories worldwide.

Nearly 400 speeches in English by foreign scholars and 110 others in Vietnamese will be presented at forums in the framework of the Festival.

The forums will focus on responsible leadership for sustainable societies; Buddhism’s approach to harmonious families, education and responsible consumption; and Buddhism and the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

This is the third time Vietnam has hosted the UN Vesak celebration. Previously, it took place in Hanoi in 2008 and the northern province of Ninh Binh in 2014.

The UN Vesak 2019 celebration is an important external event, contributing to improving the role of Vietnamese Buddhism in international integration and affirming Vietnam's position and responsibility for UN activities in all fields.