KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 29 ― The idea of dialogical community is important when societies are becoming more culturally complex and intercultural relations more problematic, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

As such he said the Islam-Confucianism dialogue on enlightened leadership held today was a significant step in the right direction of advancing the idea of a dialogical community at both national and international levels.

Anwar said in an era increasingly characterised by growing intolerance and divisiveness, the very act of engaging in civilisational dialogue represents a bold act of defiance.

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“This stands as a resolute affirmation of our steadfast dedication to nurturing mutual understanding, a culture of inclusivity in diversity and the active pursuit of peace and harmony.

“We delve into discussions that are crucial not just for our times but for the future of our planet. In our pursuit of solutions for the contemporary challenges facing humanity, we are reminded of the rules of pragmatic wisdom inherent in Islam and Confucianism,” said Anwar in his keynote address at the Islam-Confucianism Leadership Dialogue today.

The prime minister said Confucianism and Islam shared similar emphasis on the idea of moral empowerment and the way to its realisation and the idea was integral to enlightened leadership in both traditions.

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In Confucianism, he said the way was referred to as “inner cultivation” which was hardly different from the Quran’s “tazkiatun nafs” (purification of the soul).

“As we grapple with issues such as climate change, inequality, cyber security, and the ethical implications of artificial intelligence, we find that these challenges are deeply ethical in nature.

“Resolving them demands a re-evaluation of our values and the principles that guide our actions,” he said.

Anwar said those ancient philosophies had taught people about balance, ethical conduct, and the importance of considering the collective good, as well as reminding them in their actions and innovations that must be grounded in moral and ethical principles.

Malaysia, he said, as a nation where major civilisations interact in the mainstream of social and political development, stood uniquely positioned to be a beacon in this discourse.

“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,” said Anwar.

Thus, the prime minister said at the inflection point of civilisation, Malaysia must lead the way in setting the example of a more inclusive world where harmony thrives seamlessly amidst the multiplicity of races, religions, nationalities and genders. ― Bernama