03 Oct 2017 “The Lotus Sutra – A Message of Peace and Harmonious Coexistence” Exhibition Officially Opens in Singapore
After 11 months of intensive preparation involving some 4,000 volunteers, the Lotus Sutra – A Message of Peace and Harmonious Coexistence Exhibition was officially opened on 1 October, 2017, at The Arts House.
Among the guests who graced the Opening Ceremony were Guest-of-honour Mr Baey Yam Keng, Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth; Imam Habib Hassan Al-Attas of Ba’alwie Mosque; Mr David Tay, former president of the Photographic Society of Singapore; Mr Kwok Kian Chow, Director of SMU Wee Kim Wee Centre; Dr Kirpal Singh, former Director of SMU Wee Kim Wee Centre, Prof Leo Tan director of special projects at the science faculty at the National University of Singapore (NUS); Professor Joergen Oerstroem Moeller, Visiting Senior Fellow from Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (ISEAS), and Ustaz Mohamed Ali Atan, Head of Harmony Centre.
Also known as the Lotus Sutra Exhibition (LSE) in short, the international exhibition is jointly organized by The Institute of Oriental Philosophy (Japan), Dunhuang Academy (China) and Singapore Soka Association (SSA), and supported by The Institute of Oriental Manuscripts of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and International Academy of Indian Culture.
The month-long exhibition, which spans two levels at the Arts House, showcases how Buddhism, originating from India, spread to the rest of Asia and other parts of the world. In particular, it highlights the history, importance and wide acceptance of the Lotus Sutra among the Buddhist scriptures. Visitors can view rare manuscript replicas, artefacts and documents on site.
As expressed in the theme “A Message of Peace and Harmonious Coexistence”, the globally-coveted and archaeologically-rich exhibition underscores the key message of the Lotus Sutra, which focus on the intrinsic equality of human beings, regardless of gender, race, language or religion, thereby strengthening the possibility of a world of peaceful coexistence and harmony.
Some 750,000 visitors in 15 countries have visited the LSE since its inception in 2006. Singapore is the 16th country to host the international exhibition.
In his opening address, Mr Michael Yap, Chairman of SSA, said that it is a doubly joyful occasion for Singapore to host the LSE as SSA celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. He added that the LSE seeks to illuminate the characteristics of the Lotus Sutra in celebrating the co-existence of all forms of life, in the search for the eternal, and as a movement to create lasting peace. He also expressed his thanks to all volunteers for their unstinting effort in making this exhibition come true.
After viewing the exhibition, Mr Baey penned the following thoughts on a hand-crafted Lotus flower: “May the message of this exhibition spread far in Singapore and the world. Many thanks to the volunteers who made this possible.”
He also wrote in the guest book: “May peace and harmonious existence last forever in multi-racial and multi-religious Singapore.”
Beyond being an exhibition for Buddhist practitioners, the LSE seeks to convey the universal values and the hope-filled message of the Lotus Sutra for humanity that Buddha nature is inherent in each and every one of us. So, do not miss the chance to visit the exhibition in Singapore!
The exhibition on “The Lotus Sutra – A Message of Peace and Harmonious Coexistence” will be at the Arts House from 1-25 October 2017 from 10am to 9pm daily (last entry at 8pm). Admission is free. For more information please visit http://lse.sg