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Sunday, 13 October 2013 00:00

Filial Piety is for All to Observe

Written by  By Lim Beng Cin, Kuala Lumpur / Translated by Lim Mei Mei

With assistance from her classmate, Zhu Juan Qiu (right), Saranya (left) was able to perform the sign-language perfectly.【Photograph by Lee Wei Kean】

Twenty-six Indian classmates of Tinesh, the first Indian Tzu Ching of Tzu Chi Kuala Lumpur & Selangor, attended the musical drama - "Greatness of Parental Love" - on October 13, 2013. Saranya, the only Indian performer, overcame the language barrier with help from her classmate, Zhu Juan Qiu.


At 2 pm on October 13, 2013, students from 30 higher learning institutions in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor, started arriving for the first performance that afternoon. The crowd, comprising Chinese, Indians and Malays, as well as, some expatriates, came to Dewan Wawasan, Menara PGRM, to witness the "Greatness of Parental Love".

Widespread ripple of great love

Tinesh informed, "I am the first Indian Tzu Ching (Tzu Chi Collegiate Youth) to take on the mission of spreading love! To Indians, filial piety is an important virtue; but sadly, it is slowly dying off in this modern society. For this reason, I have invited my Indian friends to this event. This is the best opportunity for me to spread the great love to our race!"

Tinesh, a graduate of Limkokwing University of Creative Technology, used his idle time while seeking employment, to relentlessly persuade his friends to attend and feel the importance of filial piety. He waited patiently in the school library on a daily basis for three consecutive weeks without fail; and even called his friends personally to explain about the performance. Many people were touched by his enthusiasm.

Tinesh's friend, Paavigness Rad, was very moved by the performance; and when it ended, he immediately called his parents to say "I love you", and promised to take care of them till old age.

Mindful in resolving the language barrier

As filial piety is a virtue promoted by all religions, the musical drama team had, since April, extended invitations to performers and audience members from different ethnic backgrounds to this event.

On stage, Saranya, a shy-looking Indian student, performed the sign-language she memorized with help from her classmate, Zhu Juan Qiu.

In the first audition in April, Saranya felt the sadness and cried when the seniors explained the meaning of the lyrics. She thought of her late father, who passed away in 2012 due to cancer; and of her mother, who single-handedly took care of her and her siblings.

This performance and her father's demise had enlightened Saranya. She said, "I believe this drama can touch and remind today's youth to seize the present moment to be filial to their parents, respect their seniors, and be good! We cannot tell if we will have the chance to contribute, so do not wait till a mishap happens, then regret. It is not worth it!"

Despite not understanding Chinese, Saranya still participated in the sign-language performance. It was indeed a great challenge for her. However, with Juan Qiu's help with the translation, the Malay transcript provided by a senior, and her repeated viewing of the video clip, she was able to memorize the sequence and sign-language.

After a few months of practice, Saranya said, "If we are mindful, religion and language are not an issue." Initially, she thought only Buddhists can join Tzu Chi, but when she saw her classmate, Thenmoli joining Tzu Ching's activities, she was willing to learn more about this organization.

Saranya, who is pursuing a Nursing course, juggled between classes and fieldwork to practise; and through the frequent rehearsals, she felt she has matured a lot. To her, it was not merely a performance, nor was it only about filial piety. In fact, it was also about what the youth today should be doing. She remarked, "Nowadays, after their marriage, most youngsters would neglect their parents' needs or disrespect the elderly; they would only listen to their respective spouses." Here, she deeply pondered on this statement in the "Children's Wrongdoings" episode: "The tiniest trace of irritability in his parents enrages him, yet he willingly endures physical and verbal abuse from his wife." She hopes all her classmates, who watched the performance, can feel the same and understand the importance of filial piety.

Appreciate parents' love

Syarifah, a Malay student from University Kebangsaan Malaysia, who was invited to the performance by her roommate said, "Although our language is different, there are English subtitles that we can understand. Tzu Chi is also a charitable organization serving society. Furthermore, Islam also teaches us to be filial. So, learning all these similar teachings is not wrong."

Syarifah was moved to tears from the start of the performance when she saw the unconditional love shown by parents to their children. She said she would go home and give her parents a big hug to thank them for her upbringing and to tell them "I love you!"

Patrick, a Nigerian and Psychology student at UCSI, stood out among the crowd with his walker. He does not understand Chinese, but with the English subtitles and sign-language gestures, he understood the contents. He said, "I can never imagine that every scene in the performance was so touching, as it showed how much sacrifice our parents had made." Parents always accept their children with an open heart, and to him, that is the ultimate family love.

Patrick had learnt to appreciate his parents' virtue during his time in Malaysia. He said, "My parents and I interact pretty well. I always call home to ask about them and I would thank them for the sacrifices they made."

Realizing how fortunate he is, Patrick donated RM10./- to help others in need.



Filial piety is not restricted to any religion and race. When we are young, we have to grab the opportunity to be filial. This performance has touched the hearts of young students and made them realize they should act now to reciprocate their parents' virtues.

 

Saranya (left) and Zhu Juan Qiu (right) became very close friends after months of practising for the performance together.【Photograph by Lim Eng Yee】 Saranya was able to understand the meaning of the songs with the Malay translation prepared by a senior.【Photograph by Lim Eng Yee】

Saranya (left) and Zhu Juan Qiu (right) became very close friends after months of practising for the performance together.【Photograph by Lim Eng Yee】

Saranya was able to understand the meaning of the songs with the Malay translation prepared by a senior.【Photograph by Lim Eng Yee】
Tinesh (front row-right) successfully invited more than 20 friends to the performance. 【Photograph by Ho Wen Yee】 Tinesh's friend, Paavigness Rad (right), was deeply touched by the performance. 【Photograph by Lee Wei Kean】

Tinesh (front row-right) successfully invited more than 20 friends to the performance. 【Photograph by Ho Wen Yee】

Tinesh's friend, Paavigness Rad (right), was deeply touched by the performance. 【Photograph by Lee Wei Kean】
Filial piety is not restricted to any religion and race. A group of Malay students attended the performance that conveyed the concept of filial piety.【Photograph by Lee Wei Kean】 Being away in a different country had made Patrick (right) appreciate his parents' virtue even more.【Photograph by Wei Tsao Tseng】

Filial piety is not restricted to any religion and race. A group of Malay students attended the performance that conveyed the concept of filial piety.【Photograph by Lee Wei Kean】

Being away in a different country had made Patrick (right) appreciate his parents' virtue even more.【Photograph by Wei Tsao Tseng】

 

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