Presented in the Youth Forum on Health and Human Rights Lucknow, India
Remarks for the Youth Forum on Health and Human Rights
In support of the World Mental Health Day
First of all, I would like to wish great success to the 16th International Conference of Chief Justices of the World. This conference is a great opportunity for chief justices from around the world to gather and exchange ideas from legal perspective and share experiences of the protection of fundamental human rights such as the right of equality and freedom, the right to life and happiness, and the right to property. It is expected that national governments will create a fairer and equal environment with rule of law for the benefit of people.
In support of the World Mental Health Day, observed on Oct. 10 each year, we gather here to hold the 「Youth Forum on Health and Human Rights」 to focus our attention to the right to life of future generations, to share the secrets to mental health and to promote global human rights on health.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), approximately 450 million people in the world have mental illnesses. 200-400 million people are suffering from depression, and the number is rising as we speak. This is not only a heavy socio-economic burden but also a time bomb threatening the safety of the whole society.
According to the WHO’s definition of health, being mentally healthy is not merely the absence of mental illnesses, but a state of well-being. Tai Ji Men, which dates back over thousands years, places a great emphasis on the holistic health of the body, mind, and soul. The body and the mind, are interdependent on each other for balance, and make up a microcosmos within ourselves.
When a person’s body develops an illness, their feels miserable inside. Likewise, when a person is unhappy or stressed, their immune system becomes compromised and prone to illnesses. The fundamental principle for strengthening physical and mental health lies in safeguarding the heart with positive energy (qi). Using the positive energy (qi) to regulate the flow of energy and blood within the body and strengthening the functions of the internal organs will boost one’s immunity and help one attain complete health of the body, mind, and soul. According to traditional Chinese medicine and philosophy, “When there is sufficient healthy qi inside, pathogenic factors have no way to invade the body.” The wisdom constitutes the essence of Chinese philosophy and Chinese Medicine, which is also one of the cultural treasures at Tai Ji Men.
The heart is the fundamental core of a person. There are 3 secrets to attain mental and spiritual health.
First, to rectify one’s heart. “The Great Learning,” a classic of ancient Chinese literature, points out the following principle: “People who wish to illustrate illustrious virtue throughout the kingdom first put their own states in order. Wishing to bring order to their states, they first regulate their families. Wishing to regulate their families, they first cultivate themselves. Wishing to cultivate themselves, they first rectify their hearts. Wishing to rectify their hearts, they first seek to be sincere in their thoughts. Wishing to be sincere in their thoughts, they first extend to the utmost their knowledge, and such extension of knowledge lie in the investigation of things.” A person wishing to cultivate themself must rectify their heart first so that they won’t become anxious or unbalanced when they become absent-minded, looks but does not see, or listens but does not hear. After they have cultivated and improved themself, then they would have the opportunity to keep their house in order, stabilize his country, and make the world more peaceful.
Second, have a tranquil heart. One should have a quiet moment every day, reflecting on what one has done, examining one’s thoughts, and thinking about the past and the future. Despite one’s hectic schedule, one must reserve a quiet space for one’s heart. A tranquil heart can generate wisdom and allow one to let go of one’s worries. It can also store up enough positive energy, enabling one to take on new challenges.
Third, be happy. Modern people with high intelligence need to uplift their emotional intelligence, and allow a heart of joy to balance perception, sentiment and behavior. Spend more time with cheerful people and frequently visit places where there is positive energy. Share what is on your mind with your family and friends. Have a kind heart and always think positively. Speak more kind words and do more good deeds. Stay cheerful every day. Live each day happily. Happiness will change your destiny for the better and get rid of your illnesses. A cheerful heart will also bring you blessings.
As defined by the WHO, health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. Mankind’s rights to life will only be protected when complete health is attained. The silent risk of mental illness is quickly gaining international attention from the academica of preventive medicine. It is also the risk everyone of us faces and a burden born on a daily basis in the living environment of our One World. Only through education, the awakening of conscience, positive changes, and struggle, can we tackle the roots of the problems that cause the unhappy and unhealthy state of humankind. Only then can we protect the human rights of health for all humanity and allow ourselves and future generations to enjoy peace and happiness on Earth, our common home.
May we all be blessed with peace, happiness, and good health.
Thank you all.