Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Confucius Day (it is about education)

At the Confucius Institute Day opening ceremony just now, I was reminded of something very relevant to what is happening at the universities in Hong Kong these days. 

One major theme of Confucius Teaching is that the seniors set good examples for the juniors to follow.  If those who occupy higher ranks are moral, than those at the lower ranks would follow.  That is something parents and teachers should all be aware of.  Children and students don’t just do what they are told.  More often, they watch how we behave; and they would do the same, both consciously and unconsciously.  

Are some of our university management, such as Mr. L at HKU, setting good examples then?  Some of them have demonstrated that they are vindictive and mean spirited, treating some of the staff and students as enemies rather than someone they have to set good examples for.  These “leaders” of the university are setting bad examples for the students.  But I suspect that they do not care.  They are there for the power, not to educate.  

Confucius also teaches that when the seniors are generous, the juniors would also learn to be magnanimous. It is something we can use in service-learning.  

I picked up a free book on learning Pinyin, an ink brush, and the proper way to put our hands together to great each other.  

I didn’t realise that the men and the women put their hands together differently.  You learn something every day.  

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