by Prof Dr Damien Keown, The Buddhist Channel, May 29, 2015
In his keynote address at the opening of the United Nations Day of Vesak 2015, Prof Dr Damien Keown presents his view on how global crises can be turned into opportunities in the context of the ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations) region
Bangkok, Thailand -- While reflecting on the word ‘crisis’ I was reminded of a remark made by US President John F. Kennedy in a speech he gave in Indianapolis in 1959. The President said ‘The Chinese use two brush strokes to write the word “crisis.” One brush stroke stands for danger; the other for opportunity. In a crisis, be aware of the danger - but recognize the opportunity.’ I don’t know if the President’s understanding of Chinese was accurate, but I would like to take those words as the inspiration for my comments.