Good afternoon, the Venerable Sitagu Sayadaw of Myanmar, Mr. Hsu (General Secretary of the New Taipei City Government), Ms. Rachel Coupard (Embassy of the Republic of Haiti), Mr. Myo Thet, Ms. Pan from the Qiu’s family (donor of the museum space), friends of different religions, business, and long-time supporters of the Museum of World Religions (MWR).
Welcome to the 17th anniversary of the MWR. Over the years, we’ve been promoting life education to understand and cherish life so to dedicate it for a greater purpose. This must begin from early education. In rural Taiwan, we’ve founded quality learning programs for children and adults. In Myanmar, we’ve established the Maha Kusala Yama Monastery Elementary School with the majority of students being orphans or coming from low-income families.
A wonderful news to share with you: Bhai Sahib Ji, a prominent Sikhese teacher and a close friend of mine, is much inspired by the concept of our Museum of World Religions (MWR) in Taiwan. He has founded a secondary school in London with over 2,000 students attended. Mr. Bhai Sahib Ji also visions a university and another museum featuring major religions in the future. With this shared sense of responsibility, the inspiration is passed down and expanded.
“Respect, inclusion, and love” is the motto of the MWR, a platform intended for increasing interfaith exchanges and shared ideas. The MWR has received international recognition and appreciation. However, we need to expand “love” to a larger scale of environmentalism in this time of crisis. “Interdependent diversity, interconnected coexistence” is now the core value of global paradigm shift.
In the 2018 Parliament of the World’s Religions (PoWR), we examined the root of ecological crisis being the five poisons of mental state: greed, aversion, ignorance, doubt, and pride. Siblings of all religions, with our religious ethics, we must work to eradicate these afflictive emotions, push for environmentalism, and work for loving Earth.
The University for Life and Peace is an undergoing project in Myanmar. The institute is designed to offer integrative programs with technology and ecological ethics. By taking lessons from fallen civilizations, indigenous ecological knowledge, and more, we strive to identify problems and discover solutions. Together, we’d learn the ways to sustain our planet!
The world is an entity of interdependent diversity. Let’s begin from within, from working with our mind. Reawaken our spirituality, resonate the movement for loving Earth. Bring forth harmony to the planet so its inhabitants sustain and flourish.
Thank you all and best wishes!