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Malaysia can be at forefront in shaping new global ethical governance, says Anwar

Publish date: Wed, 29 Nov 2023, 01:36 PM

KUALA LUMPUR: Thanks to its diverse and multiracial society, Malaysia can lead the way in setting an example of a more inclusive world, says Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

In his keynote address at the Islam-Confucianism Leadership Dialogue (ICLD), the Prime Minister said Malaysia stands uniquely positioned in the discourse of social and political development.

“Our diverse heritage offers us a unique perspective and the opportunity to be at the forefront of shaping a new era of global ethical governance.

“This new paradigm, drawing lessons from our rich civilisations, promises to be more inclusive and representative of the global population.

“As we reflect on the myriad challenges before us, it becomes clear that they all converge on the most fundamental issue of ethics.

"By embracing the wisdom of Islam and Confucianism, we can work towards a future that is not only technologically advanced but also morally enlightened,” he said on Wednesday (Nov 29).

Anwar added that Confucianism and Islam share similar emphasis on the idea of moral empowerment and the way to its realisation.

Drawing from ancient philosophies, he said, would teach the people about balance, ethical conduct, and the importance of considering the collective good.

“This idea is integral to enlightened leadership in both traditions. In Confucianism, the way is referred to as ‘inner cultivation’ which is hardly different from the Quran’s tazkiatun nafs (purification of the soul).

“They remind us that our actions and innovations must be grounded in moral and ethical principles. As we move forward in this age of rapid technological advancement and environmental crisis, these teachings can guide us towards more sustainable, equitable and ethical paths,” he added.

Anwar also cited the Malaysia Madani concept, where environmental sustainability was among the six pillars of the national policy framework.

“It is imperative to understand that the relationship between man and nature is not merely one of utility, but one of profound interconnectedness and respect.

“It is in understanding this relationship that we find the roots of many of our global challenges – challenges that are, at their core, a reflection of humanity's actions and decisions,” he said.

At the event, Anwar also spent almost 30 minutes in a virtual discourse with prominent Confucian scholar Prof Tu Wei Ming, the chair professor of humanities and founding director of the Institute for Advanced Humanistic Studies at Peking University.

Also present were Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Chang Lih Kang, Boao Confucian Entrepreneurs Forum president Prof Li Honglei and ICLD organising committee chairman Lee Chean Chung.

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