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Character Education

Asian Conferences Inspire Educators

 

Bangkok, Thailand - UPF held two conferences for high school and college directors in Bangkok, Thailand, in late December.

The Asian Leadership Peace Conferences, held on Dec. 17 to 21 and on Dec. 20 to 24, were a joint effort of UPF-Thailand and UPF-Nepal. The theme for both conferences was “Our Shared Responsibility in Building a Nation of Peace.” Lectures were given by Dr. Chung Sik Yong, UPF-Asia president; Mrs. Ursula McLackland, UPF-Asia secretary general; and Dr. Robert Kittel, UPF-Asia special emissary for education.

There was a total of 139 participants from Nepal and 11 from India. Eighty-three Nepalese educational institutions were represented, including 54 school directors and their spouses.

The programs were designed to prepare participants for the Interfaith Peace Blessing for 70,000 people that will take place in Nepal’s largest sports arena on Feb. 21, 2015. At that event married couples will rededicate their marriage and students will take a Pure Love Pledge.

The Nepalese Ministry of Education fully supported these conferences. The husband of the minister of education attended, officially representing his wife. Two prominent former university vice chancellors from Nepal also attended, as did two members of Nepal’s Parliament. The heads of Nepal’s two private school organizations attended, representing nearly 3 million students.

A major focus of the conferences was the importance of character education in the development of young people, especially character education based on the principles of public-mindedness and sexual purity taught by UPF Founder Dr. Sun Myung Moon.

One result of the conferences was that the Professors World Peace Academy and the Teachers’ Association for the Research of Principles were restarted in both Nepal and India.

The following are excerpts from reflections written by participants:

I perceived this program as one of my life’s turning points. This program especially made me think twice about showing love between wife and husband, brother and sister, mother and father.

I would like to thank you for the enlightenment that we are benefited by sacrifice, no premarital sex and the shared principles of peace from the individual to the family to further in society/community and the nation as a whole. Thank you.

Our students and youngsters of today’s modern society have, in comparison, lesser humility, lesser love and bonds with their family members, lesser patriotism. … They are derailed by the influence of international practices or missed global culture. Many students come to our school from broken families, where they live either with mother or father only. Some even don’t have either one. So they are growing up with harsh feelings. … Let’s heal the degrading humanity of the problems of young people.

I may not fully agree to all the ideologies of Dr. Moon, but I really like his approach toward restoring peace in the world with respect to love and unselfishness and putting family in the center of the process toward establishing peace in the world.

I myself am the example of a life-changing experience through Dr. Moon and Mrs. Moon’s principle and philosophy. Just 16 years back I got the opportunity to participate in a Pure Love Alliance program in 1998. A few Korean teachers taught us about Pure Love and we all (50 students) pledged to purity. From that day onward, my goal is set and I am strong in my mind, body and soul. Now I would like to request all the participants to rise from their seats and follow by repeating: We make the commitment to meet again at the National Stadium on the 21st of February with 70,000 people to celebrate the Family and Marriage Peace Blessing Festival.

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