"'Harmony' is the great gift the Chinese nation offers to the world," said leading Chinese scholar Ji Xianlin at the ongoing International Forum on Daodejing, one of the world's classic philosophical texts.
The 96-year-old professor from Peking University made the remarks on a videotape screened at the meeting.
According to Ji, Chinese culture can be described in different ways, but "in terms of religious belief, it consists of three parts: Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism."
Ji said China had promoted the concept of harmony since ancient times and "in this day and age, we are again putting forward the great idea of 'harmony'."
"We hope the whole world can accept this idea so that our global village can become more peaceful," he said.
"Distances are contracting in our global village but problems are growing. Why?" asked the professor.
"Because the world has been following the law of the jungle instead of seeking harmony," he said.
"China's notion of harmony will help people all over the world understand, respect and love each other and stop fighting," he said.
The professor also said that people should co-exist peacefully with nature rather than "conquering it".
"Humans should have a relationship with nature that stresses friendship, equality and mutual respect," he said. "It's wrong to say one should conquer the other."
(Xinhua News Agency April 26, 2007)