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Beijing Games Highlight Chinese Values: Scholar
    2008-08-26 14:28:59     Xinhua

From a cultural perspective, one outstanding achievement of the Beijing Olympics is that it highlighted the basic values of the Chinese people and demonstrated China's moral power, a leading Chinese-American philosopher said.

"The concept of harmony is the core value of the Chinese culture from the very beginning and China's ultimate goal is to help build a world of harmony," Chung-ying Cheng, a professor at the University of Hawaii and a leading figure of the Neo-Confucianism, told Xinhua in a recent telephone interview.

"The Beijing Olympics not only highlighted the traditional value, but also added a modern touch to it," he said.

In all, the Games has exhibited the spirit, culture and basic values of China and symbolized the Chinese people's embracing of the world, and their love for the culture and the human race, Cheng added.

In his opinion, during the Beijing Olympics, China also displayed its respect for other cultures and its emphasis on modern technology.

"It was a wonderful combination of modernity and tradition. It gave the world an impression that China is modern and even futurist. And at the same time, China deeply respects culture and essence of people, and the value of life," he said.

Cheng also observed that hosting a successful Olympics has enhanced the self-confidence of the Chinese people.

"The Chinese people are very friendly and they are very good at planning and creating a superb sports environment. The Chinese people emerged with more self-confidence from the Games and it also ushered in a new relationship between China and the rest of the world. That is: China is coming to the world and the world is also coming to China," said the professor.

Asked about the most impressive scenes during the Games, Cheng said one is a teenage survivor of the Sichuan earthquake walking side by side with China's great basketball star Yao Ming.

"It is a vivid example of the Chinese traditional concept of 'all people are my brothers'," he noted.

Cheng believed that the Beijing Olympics will have a very profound and lasting impact.

"It demonstrated the great achievements of China since it adopted the reform and opening-up path 30 years ago. And fundamentally speaking, it is the traditional value of unremitting self-improvement that drove the rapid development of China," he said.

"China is now actively involved in regional and world affairs and it shows that China is caring for the world and is contributing to the world. The Olympics was just the finishing touch to the great achievement," Cheng told Xinhua.

The philosopher, who has studied Chinese and Western cultures for decades, said it is important that the Chinese people always stick to their traditional culture value and always be confident.

"China's development is centered on its people and will have a better future," he said.

China not only demonstrated, exerted and increased its soft power during the Games, but also exhibited its strategic wisdom and capability, Cheng stressed, adding it is also a display of sincerity and openness, the moral power of the Chinese culture.

Cheng said it is important for China to develop the concept of harmony continuously.

"We should progress in harmony, and search among differences. By mutually complementing and helping each other and interacting with each other, we can reach the greater harmony. I believe it is the foundation of the development of Chinese culture and will also serve as a basic driving force for the development of the world as a whole," Cheng said.



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What do you think will impress foreign visitors the most during the Beijing Olympics?
The friendliness of the Beijing people
The Water Cube and other Olympic venues
The Forbidden City
The Great Wall
Beijing "siheyuan" (Chinese traditional courtyard houses)
Peking Opera
Wangfujing Street
Beijing Roast Duck