Interviewing in the live show
of Radio Free Asia Listen
(November 5, 2006)
Family Base Education
Direct link: http://www.rfa.org/khmer/kammakvithi/neatiabrumvicheamephteah/2006/11/04/whats_out_and_in_education_system/
Today, education program for householder facilitated by Mrs. Sariratana,
will pick up the addressing of Preah Dejkun Sophan who is a Cambodian
student monk in East West Center of United States to broadcast
mainly focusing on the children education in the families in present
In Cambodia, the families that have many children, parents and
relatives always complained that their children have not been
well educated. Some children who are lack of education caused
many difficulties for families and they fell evil and evil eventually
to make society faced dangers. The getting away from home and
the stubbornness of children happened in the variety of characters.
Many children in Cambodia are confronting starvation, sexual exploitation
and over hard labor to find revenue to sustain family. To educate
Cambodian children in present society which is anarchy with deficits
of living behavior and moral codes especially drug addictions
are spreading out entirely the country and education institution
is likely weak. How do the parents or guardians learn the applicable
knowledge to instruct their children and what are the essential
points? Preah Dejkun Sophan Seng, a Khmer student monk of East
West Center addressed us that “education can
divide into two aspects: formal education and non-formal education.
Formal education is the system that can provide professional knowledge
for the future’s jobs, but the important education is the
non-formal education based on family that is the foundation of
society. When we say about family, Cambodia is the family system
society.” Preah Dejkun addressed that in developed
countries, when their children are 18 years old and up, national
law doesn’t allow parents to have full rights to instruct
and guard. Children have full rights to destine their life and
future. But in Cambodia, parents still take in accountability
of their children. “Cambodia society values
family which had the root in the kingdom of the splendor Angkor
period and it has continued to the present. They have warmness
and confidence in living together although the children are older
than 18 years old; parents still extend empathy and guard their
children. Children also extend empathy and caring their parents
by helping and supporting them. This is the key non-formal education
system connecting to culture that bear fruits in providing non-formal
education of Cambodia. So how can we utilize this concept which
is the core factor of family base in society to bring happiness,
prosperity, unity and progress, parents have to develop methodology.”
When we say about the word “methodology”, they always
refer to the teachers but in reality it is not, methodology refers
to all citizens while they have responsibility that every body
genuinely has all of them, no body has no accountability at all.
“So education in family, the key method is that,
parents have to take accountable to provide education to children.
In the Tipitaka scripture of the Buddha’s teachings, He
emphasized that parents must have compassion and they are recognized
as the Brahma god of children. Brahma god of children means we
have to love our children truly and not loving without wisdom.
We love our children that this love must flow out from both our
heart and brain. Love that flows from heart is the natural, genuine
love between parents and children, but love that flows from brain
is the love that parents have to instruct and direct the children
to build capacity that they can stand by themselves when parents
are perished. This is very important that parents have to develop
pedagogy or methodology to do whatever to make our children, sons
and daughters can sustain themselves, have self-reliance and pay
attention with the maters of their own lives to achieve the goals
of their future.” Preah Dejkun pointed out
the five types of moral that children must have: “importantly,
in our Khmer society has always given the values that good person
has to have five good that means that good children must have
these five good. First is good child who respects parents and
their advices, second is the good student for teachers, third
is a good friend of friends because in society we cannot live
without having friends because individuals have to associate with
friends, so we have to make ourselves as a good friend to them,
fourth is the good member of society because we have society constituting
of rule of laws, and on behalf of religious follower, we must
observe and study the principles that Buddhism has opened to all.”
Preah Dejkun Vojirakunto Som Sinan, president of Buddhist Moral
Instruction Center addressed the issues relating children education
that “family constitutes of more than two people or a group
of people that assemble together as a family; and offered aids
and caring each other, especially every body has become parents
must have children although they are male or female. So if we
want to be good parents and raise our children in a productive
way that they can be recognized and valued by society unless parents
must have Four Sublime States of the Mind and Five Aids Assistances
to all.” According to the addresses of Preah Bhikkhu Sovanratana,
professor of Buddhist Sihanouk Raja University, Phnom Penh added
that breeding and instructing of both male and female children
well in the future are the duty of parents and teachers.
Interviewing of Khmer Radio Free
Interviewing date: October 22, 2006 at RFA Office,
2025 M Street, NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20036
Broadcasting date: October 25, 2006 of both morning(5:30-6:30AM)
and evening(7:30-8:30PM) after the national and international
Duration: 7 minutes
Original interviewing link: http://www.rfa.org/khmer/batsampheas/2006/10/25/monk_east_west_center/
The whole theme of interviewing is translated as follow:
In the previous times as well as in present time, East West Center
has provided fellowships and scholarships of both Graduate degree
and PhD degree to Cambodian students including Cambodian Buddhist
monk. Preah Dejkun(Venerable) Seng Sophan is a Khmer Buddhist
monk of this center will describe about the importance of some
EWC’s programs for you all(listeners) following interviewing
of Mrs.Moeung Tuom:
Firstly, I would like to ask Preah Dejkun about name,
place and purposes to come to United States?
My name Preah Bhikkhu Seng Sophan stayed in Watt Khmer Samakii
Calgary, Canada, Alberta province. I have received fellowship/scholarship
from (Hawaii University or) East West Center to study in graduate
school called Asia Pacific Leadership Program; and come to field
trip in New York and Washington DC for ten days. I will return
back to study normally at the University of Hawaii.
What generation that Preah Dejkun is participating,
how many foreign students and what are their countries?
In the program, they need forty-eight students but this year
we have forty-four students coming from twenty two countries around
the world such as Asia: East Asia, Middle Asia, Asia Pacific,
South-east Asia; Australia, Europe and there are many students
are from North America. I am in generation sixth.
What are the purposes and important objectives of
East-West Center to instruct students from around the world; and
what importance to those students’ country as well as to
Yes, East-West Center as we can see the word East and West that
they want people living in the region of eastern named Asia and
western named America understand each other specifically the relationship
of culture. That why there is Buddhist monk coming to study too.
Last year we had a Cambodian monk too, this year we have three:
I and other two Cambodian students, one is female and another
one is male. The important purposes of East-West Center is to
develop human resource focusing on leadership capacity building
specifying on education that always called education leadership
in which they think that in each society must have youth who create
willingness to develop themselves to become a leader. This leadership
mainly origins in the self-leading/learning, when we can lead
ourselves we can lead our family; when we can lead our family
well we can lead the whole community as well as the whole world.
They pay attention on three subjective courses: Regional Core
Issues including economic, culture, religions, politic, environment,
information, social and health etc. In present time, they mostly
debate on the regional terrorism. Second course is the Leadership
Seminar that focuses on the effectiveness of leadership in the
future. The last one is Professional Leadership Seminar that emphasizes
on duties that we are taking in accountability although we are
in official institutes, private companies or non-profit organizations
have to obtain the education of leadership. East-West Center has
emphasized on these three subjects. Their important purposes are
to develop human resource especially young generation in order
to leverage them to be the effective future leaders. This initiative
is very critical for Cambodia particularly those youths including
Bhikkhu Monks to perceive that they want to help us very much.
How long will Preah Dejkun study at East-West Center?
The study program provided by East-West Center has two options:
Degree and Non-degree. If we choose to learn Degree, it will take
two years. But for me, I chose Non-degree or it is called Graduate
Certificate. This non-degree has two options: five months program
and nine months program. Five months program is an intensive course
consisting of theoretical and practical studies which keep all
students busy. If any students want to do internship, they can
choose nine months program; and if they don’t want to do
internship, they just choose five months and they also can graduate.
This year there are many field trips scheduled such as in many
places in Hawaii, New York, Washington DC. And at the end of the
November, the field trip will spend almost three(four) weeks by
passing Taiwan and finally to participate the East-West Center(Hawaii
University) Alumni Conference in Hanoi, Vietnam which is the significant
conference lasting to almost 10 days(?). So the inclusive learning
of APLP emphasizes on concrete experiences: learning, visualizing
and implementing. This is the program which I have chosen, the
full time course five months.
East-West Center is the organization or institution
belonging to any countries? And how other Cambodian students who
have ability can apply for this fellowship as Preah Dejkun has
East-West Center is the governmental organization that has been
approved by United States congress for almost forty years(?),
and the congress of America funds this center as well as other
Americans organizations. In United States has the biggest East-West
Center office located majestically in Hawaii Island, Honolulu
city. Hawaii Island is the island that connects Asia and America
together in the middle. In this island, most people are Asians
that seems more than Caucasians. The easy way to approach the
East-West Center address is through website: www.eastwestcenter.org
or go to Yahoo or Google search machine by typing East-West Center.
In the website there are more informations that you can learn
in details than what I have mentioned. Thank you!
Meditation and Leadership
Almost four months in Asia Pacific Leadership Program course that
has provided me the realization of how important of individuality
in supporting sustainable development. Three lessons are mainly
to value the individuality that has full potential to impact the
whole compounding society. In Leadership Seminar have the core ideas
that center on individual’s motivation. Started its class
with silent lesson had inspired me very much to explore my inner
strength and ability. Culture and diversity also emphasized the
existence of self to extend to other beings, environment and culture
through the prospects of respecting, tolerating and compassionating.
Visioning the future and personal action plan (PAP) also intensified
self-centered, self-innovated, self-projected, and self-oriented.
In Professional Development Leadership Seminar has encouraged individuals
to improve self-resume and curriculum vitae through self-experiences,
community services and orientations. Egonet and networking classified
self as the most important component to create networking effectively.
Through self-effort, self-intelligence, self-awareness and self-responsibility
should bear fruits to success in exposing with other people and
tasks. When we can create ourselves as a stable pole or a big island,
there will be many people trust and want to take refuge. In Regional
Core Issues have the concept that economics, politics, environment,
culture, social formation and information are circle and spinning
around the word “I.” “I” is the essence
of these core issues. Bad or good originated from “I”.
So how can we refurbish “I”, “Self” or “Individual”
to be more proactive and essential milestone leading to success?
The self and its relationship with nature according well-known
Both Mechanical Universe of Isaac Newton and Quantum Mechanics of
Albert Einstein have clarified that self or individual is very essential
to respond to the whole society, world and universal under a certain
natural law which called original interdependent or inter relativism.
Buddha was the first researcher who found this theory and taught
everybody about this inter relation and pointed out the way of middle
path, self-reliance and enlightenment.
Why meditation should be important to develop leadership?
When we discuss about self-reliance; it must come from inner individual
discovery through meditation practice. Good leader aims at those
who can lead themselves, endure to serve others and initiate self-orientation.
Richard Davidson, Neuroscientist of Wisconsin University had found
that meditation is the important tool to develop happiness and other
abilities especially leadership . This factual statement inspires
us to look inside and explore this tool together.
What is meditation?
Meditation is the method to explore self-strengths, peace, wisdom,
compassion, motivation and innovation. Meditation doesn’t
distinguish the practitioners by race, religions, language, traits
or location. It is not the faith or belief but the discovery of
self-enlightenment. It is not the spiritual rites, but the developing
center of wisdom, compassion, dedication and leadership. There are
two types of meditation: concentration meditation and insight meditation.
Concentration meditation is the practice concerning the establishing
of calmness, stillness and peace of the mind while Insight Meditation
focuses on the cultivation of mindfulness and consciousness.
Meditators (Yugin) can use simple things to practice this method.
• Chanting mantras or reciting any words or poem. Now, most
people use hymns, songs or music that doesn’t stimulate craving,
surprising or amusing as their instrument to calm their mind and
• Watching one certain thing or item by focusing on its entity,
size, color or characteristic to still the mind with it without
paying attention with other things or mind-thought. In the present,
they prefer to travel and spend time at the mountains, rice-fields
or quiet natural sites.
• Praying to what we believe to empower ourselves as the center
of all things including the relationship of ourselves to the higher
beings. Every religion has their basic meditation by going to pray
in the temples, churches, mosques or synagogues; and through this
praying they can experience self- emotional comfort. But this temporary
comfort is easily affected by the outside impermanent things. So,
if we need it more permanent, just take time to find meditation
instructors or other reliable sources to develop ourselves at more
higher level accomplishment.
This method directs practitioners to stay in focus and being mindful.
There is the different between mindfulness and peacefulness but
these both are basically interdependent. Mindfulness can be cultivated
through Four Bases of Mindfulness:
• Mindfulness practice based on body by being aware and mindful
with our four main positioning: sitting, standing, walking and sleeping.
Present time, physical mindful base has been practiced widely the
breathing meditation by concentrating on abdomen’s rising
and falling. Rising inhales and falling exhales.
• Mindfulness practice based on sensation is the effort to
neutralize our judgment through the controlling of six senses such
as eyes, nose, ears, tongue, bodily tangible and mind. Normally,
ordinary people are always indulgent of extremes with their six
sense experiences. For example, when our eyes see the forms, we
are always judgmental with good and bad, and these two biases that
lead to suffering and discrimination in our mind because we do not
see them as they are. To be not judgmental and biased, we have to
train our mind to be mindful and see all things around us as the
reality they are.
• Mindfulness practice based on the investigating of the mind
that wanders near and far. Our mind is naturally like a monkey that
moves all the time. It is restlessly, so they always called it monkey-minded.
Different from the Concentration Meditation, Insight Meditation
doesn’t need us to try inducing thought but to be aware of
all movement of the thought.
• Mindfulness practice based on Dhamma mainly focuses on the
righteousness operating through body, emotion and mind. Practitioners
can experience through the awareness of body movement, sensing emotion
and restless monkey-minded.
In our modern industrialized and competitive society, people experience
depressions and stresses from busy works and pressured environments.
This reality leads them to understand the importance of having peaceful
mind. Of course, meditation has been practiced in our daily lives
as the basic awareness and we can accelerate it to higher levels
of more beneficial we should get.
November 1, 2006