The Second International Day of Conscience
Realizing Our Era of Conscience
Creating a World of Peace for Humanity
Dr. Hong, Tao-Tze
President of Federation of World Peace and Love
Vice-President of Association of World Citizens
Zhang-men-ren of Tai Ji Men
Apr. 5, 2021
Today is a special day. Let us pause for a moment of silence, to reflect, with gratitude, upon our past, present, and future.
On July 25, 2019, the United Nations adopted the resolution “Promoting the Culture of Peace with Love and Conscience,” designating April 5 as the International Day of Conscience, and today marks the second International Day of Conscience.
The Federation of World Peace and Love has been promoting the culture of peace with love and conscience around the world through various activities since it started fostering the movement of An Era of Conscience in 2014. It is hoped that everyone will do good deeds, spread seeds of kindness across the planet, and encourage others to do the same, making the butterfly effect of positivity take flight for the betterment of the world. I would like to thank many international friends and organizations, countries, and the United Nations for their endeavors, as our collective efforts have made the International Day of Conscience possible. It is a day of conscience for all humanity. This day belongs to every world citizen and has a profound meaning.
Over the past two years, the world has changed rapidly, and people’s emotions have fluctuated. The coronavirus has encroached onto our daily lives since the beginning of 2020. Stability and prosperity have been replaced by anxiety and fear. The unexpected outbreak has brought humankind unprecedented challenges and crises, causing our planet to plunge into silence and exacerbating people’s feelings of uncertainty about the future. With countries tightening their borders, the distances between people and between nations have increased. How do we restore security and tranquility while the world is filled with tension, anxiety, and depression? The best remedy is to realize conscience, love, and human rights. Love is the driving force of human life, and conscience empowers love. With conscience and love, we will respect and protect human rights. Conscience, love, and human rights are the most important elements that stabilize us, our families, and the world. They are also the most important missions and values in life.
Conscience is innate and a priceless treasure. It is the beauty of human hearts. If you take a minute of silence each day, look in the mirror, reflect on yourself, and correct your mistakes, then you may “see” it. Conscience is like a fragrant flower. If you take a minute of peace to appreciate what you have and the kindness you have received from others, you may “smell” it. Conscience is the built-in alarm. If you are willing to listen with a quiet heart, it will guide you to distinguish good from bad, right from wrong, and true from false as well as lead you to choose the right path to happiness and avoid tragedies. Conscience is our best ally, residing deep inside our hearts, giving us courage, hope, and energy. It enables people to understand, respect, help, and tolerate one another. It also gives them wisdom to face challenges and overcome difficulties. Conscience and love complement each other, and through kind hearts and good deeds, love will spread all over the world.
When we were given the opportunity to be born into this world in this life, we all made commitments to Heaven and our conscience. When our lives come to an end, what we have done in this life will be evaluated against the criteria of conscience. There is an old Chinese saying: “Conscience reflects the law of Heaven.” Whatever we are doing, Heaven is watching us. This reminds us that conscience is the ultimate judge of the universe, superseding all the laws and regulations in this world. The so-called judgement or karma in religious beliefs is the overall evaluation of one’s doings in a lifetime. No one can escape the ultimate judgment by Heaven. To think kind thoughts, speak kind words, and do good deeds is the correct attitude and principle we should adhere to in handling people and things. Conscience is the guide for our daily actions. The awakening of conscience is the crucial key to stabilizing people’s hearts and the world.
It is important to promote conscience education and make such an education take root in children. This will allow conscience, love, and peace to become the main elements in people's thoughts. This is a very important project of “foundation construction” and requires the commitment of experts and scholars in education, teachers, and principals, as well as the attention of leaders from all walks of life, who set an example by incorporating conscience into their cultures through personal actions and various ways, and further developing a conscience-based social education. When human beings develop a mainstream culture of conscience, love, and peace through education, a conscience-based society and country will naturally take shape. As more people awaken to their conscience, they will realize that the true "goodness" is the harmonious coexistence among people, among communities, among nations, and between humans and nature. In this way, human beings will have the opportunity to break away from the mentality of pursuing rapid technological development and competition for profit, and they will change from competition to cooperation. When people start to help and love each other, the world will develop harmoniously, steadily, and sustainably. Through the awakening of conscience, "knowledge" and "wisdom" will be combined, and we can change the world for the better with conscience and love. We hope people will all take on the responsibility of building a conscience-driven education and a culture of conscience for themselves and for the world. This is the most genuine and important value of the continuity of life.
The challenges we currently face as a human race are caused by what we did in the past. We should reflect on the fact that our future depends on our actions today, that all of us hold the key to the future, and that conscience allows us to turn this key of hope. Conscience is not a fictional term. It is immediately actionable. In the hustle and bustle of everyday life, please take a moment of peace to allow your awakened conscience to be with you at all times, guiding you to do good and stop evil. We need to take action and reflect on ourselves daily. Through self-reflection, we will find our motivation and turn that motivation into commitment. Then we can further use that commitment to inspire action. This way, we can improve ourselves, influence others, and contribute to society for the benefit of the world.
The world is volatile, but we can secure our hearts with “Oneness,” which is conscience. Things change as the circumstances change, but we should adhere to conscience and noble deeds regardless of changes in circumstances. Only our conscience can save our souls, and only conscience can save our world. I invite you all to start practicing love and conscience in everything you do and inspire those around you to realize their era of conscience to jointly create a world of happiness for all humanity. Let us move forward happily together for a world of peace. Let us work together to give humanity an opportunity to move towards peace and sustainability and share a happy, fulfilling, and true era of conscience!
May peace prevail on Earth. May everyone be blessed with peace and happiness.
*Presented at the ICDAY’S virtual event in support of UN International Day of Conscience