Panel 6. “The Cultivation of Humanity as an Unfinished Project: Dialogue Among Civilisations”
Throughout our history, the need to define and contextualise the self, our selves, and our communities has been fundamental to the development of philosophy, religion, and spirituality. The subjectivity that inevitably accompanies this process reinforces our sense of difference, of boundaries between civilizations. The discourse on dialogue among civilisations primarily manifests itself in four dimensions: self, community (social, political and economic fields), nature, and spirituality. At a practical level, there are pressing issues regarding community cohesiveness, from the family community to the global community. Our relations with the natural world are becoming increasingly acute, as human activity and prosperity threatens fundamental ecosystems that support life on Earth. In this polarised age we see both the seemingly relentless spread of religious fundamentalism and inter-faith conflicts, and a dominant rationalist and materialistic culture that eschews spirituality at both religious and philosophical levels. Only by connecting all four dimensions and exploring holistically the human existential condition can we develop a comprehensive approach to addressing the issues facing humanity. This panel will invite great minds from different traditions to explore and discuss how the dialogue of civilisations can be developed into a school of thought that draws on a plethora of approaches to study human nature, its multiple relationships to the world and how to advance humanity’s development.
Main points for Panel Discussion
- How can ‘dialogue among cultures’ be utilised as a critical element of intercivilisational collaboration?
- Has “reason” has failed us, has instrumental rationality run wild, leaving no space for humanistic values to grow? How can we suggest a constructive way out?
- What major concepts shed light on human beings’ constructive relationships with nature?
- How to create positive correlation among digitalization, Hi-Tech development, and ethics to protect humane in human beings.
- How can we as individuals develop constructive relationships with others and society?
- From a dialogical perspective, how can we understand life spaces for humanity and foster a “common community of human destiny?