Nishan Forum on World Civilizations kicks off in Qufu
Published: Jul 10, 2024 08:29 PM
Photo: VCG

Photo: VCG

It has been over 2,000 years since Confucius said, "Is it not a joy to have friends from afar?" On Wednesday, at his hometown Qufu in East China's Shandong Province, the 10th Nishan Forum on World Civilizations embraced the world with open arms, promoting exchanges between diverse civilizations.

Nishan, located 30 kilometers southeast of Qufu in Jining, is well-known for the world cultural heritage sites like the Temple of Confucius, the Mansion of Confucius and the Cemetery of Confucius. The forum, first launched in 2010, is seen as an important platform for strengthening dialogue between civilizations around the world.

Themed "Traditional Culture and Modern Civilization," The Nishan Forum, which concludes on Thursday, has attracted nearly 400 international guests from 63 countries, including diplomatic envoys, representatives of international organizations and well-known scholars, exceeding the scale and number of the past forums.

The guests from around the world have gathered at the forum to debate on several topics such as civilizational exchanges and mutual learning amid global challenges. One of the parallel sessions themed Confucius and Aristotle explores how to deal with modern challenges through ancient wisdom.

Foreign scholars cited the classic sayings and thoughts of Confucius at the forum to articulate their views on and support of China's Global Civilization Initiative and the concept of a community with a shared future. US economics professor Jeffery Sachs noted that "harmony but not uniformity" has been the best interpretation of the world, while the US philosophy professor Bryan Van Norden was impressed by "What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others," saying that this saying can act as a compass for today's world.

The forum set sessions on sports spirit and family culture for the first time. Thomas Bach, president of the International Olympic Committee, spoke via video message at the opening ceremony of the forum, during which he approved the sports session themed on traditional Chinese culture and the Olympic spirit.