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  • Hong Kong University School of Professional and Continuing Education

Buddhism: Diamond Sutra and World Peace

Get an introduction to the Diamond Sutra and learn how its Buddhist teachings could be applied to achieve world peace and harmony.

921 enrolled on this course

Buddhism symbol the lotus flower, alongside a war zone scene
  • Duration

    7 weeks
  • Weekly study

    3 hours

Understand the Diamond Sutra and explore the conflict between man and religion

The Diamond Sutra is one of the most historically important texts in Buddhism. On this course, you will use the text as a guide to explore the prospect of world peace.

You will learn about the conflicts that arise between humans and religion, and consider how they could be resolved through the teachings of the Diamond Sutra.

You will discover how different religions relate to each other and explore the idea that all religions are pursuing the same truth. You will also consider the idea that people, whatever their religious beliefs, are capable of promoting world peace for the same reasons.

Skip to 0 minutes and 14 seconds For a very long time, religions have been an inseparable part of human history. The conflicts amongst religions also have a very long history, for instance, the Crusades, conflicts in the Middle East, and the Iran-Iraq War. Unfortunately, there are a lot of controversies / conflicts amongst religions. For instance, what I worship is true, and yours is false. Different religions are radically different in the way they pursue the Truth, and how they understand it. How dissimilar are the truths they mention? In fact, the Buddhist scripture, The Diamond Sutra, mentions a concept entirely capable of promoting peace… We shall begin with The Diamond Sutra, and in this course explore with you the path of religions and world peace.

Skip to 1 minute and 12 seconds How can human conflicts be resolved? How can religious disputes be reduced?

What topics will you cover?

Week 1: Welcome to the course
Week 2: Basic understanding of The Diamond Sutra
Week 3: The definition of religion and intra-religious paradoxes
Week 4: The two categories that classify the myriad things in the world and their examples
Week 5: Everyone is in the process of searching for the truth
Week 6: The dark side of human nature that generates craving, aversion, and ignorance
Week 7: Marching towards peace

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Describe the core ideas of Conditioned Phenomena and Unconditioned Phenomena in The Diamond Sutra
  • Explore how religions influence people’s behaviours and what people expect after death
  • Interpret myriad phenomena with the use of the two categories and illustrate examples of things of transient and eternal nature
  • Identify that different religions are all in the process of searching for the Truth
  • Describe the conflicts that arise from one's greed, hatred and delusion and appreciate how The Diamond Sutra teaches one to remove the dark side of human nature
  • Explain the reason and logic behind 'everyone is searching for the Truth', and why the concept of analysis ('everyone is searching for the Truth') could help promote peace

Who is the course for?

The course is designed for anyone with an interest in Buddhism and the relationship between religion and war.

Who will you learn with?

Dr Bruce Siu Nang CHEUNG is Head of College of Life Sciences and Technology, HKU School of Professional and Continuing Education, and the Chairman of Universal Brightness Esoteric Buddhist Seminary.

Who developed the course?

HKU School of Professional and Continuing Education

In fulfilling the mission of The University of Hong Kong in extending lifelong learning opportunities for the community, HKU SPACE aspires to be a world-class centre of excellence.

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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