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Mao Shan Declaration | Speech by Martin Palmer, Jurong: 27 October 2008 | Speech by Martin Palmer, Jurong: 29 October 2008 | Speech by Olav Kjorven, Jurong: October 2008

Speech by Martin Palmer, Jurong: 29 October 2008

"A journey of one thousand miles starts beneath your feet", Dao De Jing Chapter 64.

I want to congratulate the delegates to the Third Ecology Protection Forum of the China Daoist Temples and Pagodas on two outstanding and historically important documents.

I found your description at the beginning – of how as one thing is hurt others will be harmed, and how when one thing is protected, others will share the benefit – to be beautiful, poetic and profound.

The Mao Shan Declaration takes the important principles established by the Qinling Declaration several steps further. The success of the Daoist Temple Ecology Education Alliance, founded upon the Qinling Declaration, can now advance even further.

Your draft recommendations for the Daoist Eight Year Plan are inspirational. And the plan is achievable for five reasons.

1. For every idea, and item in the plan, there is already a temple doing something. For example, education centres already exist in so many temples, and you can learn from each other.

2. The Network of Daoist Temples links temples which are committed to the environment, and which already lead by example.

3. Some new areas such as the youth camps build upon ideas and experiences. Fore example, Master Liu from Purple Cloud Temple spoke of his joy at hearing more birds in the morning, because nature in his area was recovering after years of suffering. Imagine how taking young people from crowded cities to the peace and beauty of nature will awaken respect and love for nature.

4. This can largely be done by using the resources you already have. In the spirit of the Dao this MUST be a programme that you can sustain and where the energy comes from you, although sometimes with a little help from outside.

5. This Eight Year Plan is not something that outsiders have created. This plan breathes with the energy of the Dao. It is founded upon the wisdom of Lao Zi. It is filled with the vision of Daoism. It is how Daoism will help to shape the wonderful harmony and balance which China and the world require. You, as Daoists, are the strength of this plan.

Many of your ideas will now help inspire other people in other religions, and we will be taking this draft version of the plan back with us, to show to others, and say these are the wonderful things that are being done by Daoists in China.

There is a phrase from the Dao De Jing Chapter 64 that a journey of one thousand miles starts beneath your feet.

Thank you, and may we walk with you, and make the first steps together based on where we are right now… as together we make this world heaven upon earth.

**** Links

*** Link here for news of the Third Daoist Ecology Forum which opened on 27 October 2008 in Jurong, near Nanjing in Jiangsu Province.

*** Link here to read the Mao Shan Declaration in Chinese and English.

*** Link here for details of Martin Palmer's introductory talk at the Daoist Ecology Forum in Jurong.

*** Link here for details of UN's representative, Olav Kjorven's speech at the Third Daoist Ecology Forum in Jurong.

*** And link here to read an article on Daoism and climate change written by Olav Kjorven.

*** Link here for details of Chinese Daoists' Ecology Protection Eight Year Plan.

*** Link here for more Daoist eco-news.

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