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Bai Yansong at Shizishan Forum: Youth and Responsibility

Bai Yansong

The famous CCTV host Bai Yansong was invited to the Shizishan Forum in the afternoon on December 20thwhere he delivered to faculties and students a lecture on youth and responsibility.

A Discomfort Zone Initiates New Knowledge

"Discomfort and dislike tend to lead you to a new field." Bai Yansong discussed the relationship between discomfort and development with the audience at the beginning of his lecture, claiming that "People would never grow up if they always pursue the things they like without trying those they are unaccustomed to." Starting with the youths keen on WeChat Moments, Bai introduced the importance of "breaking with discomfort and taking in knowledge". In his opinion, people often collide with a strange environment, even resisting it; however, if people communicate only with familiar friends, they would stay in similar fields for a long time and certainly miss the new opportunities, like bamboos losing their opportunities to grow in the jointing stage." Therefore, Bai suggested people not to escape from discomfort and not to reject strangers easily, but to learn to embrace things that you dislike.

Time is the Most Efficient Cure

"You should know the power of time"—this is another precious suggestion given by Bai. Taking his own ups and downs in his employment by CCTV as examples, he encouraged his audience to be more curious about and patient with their future. "Hope tends to blossom in your deepest despair." Bai believed that youths should know the power of time and respect it. Bai, at the age of 50, said that behind fairness, dream, pain and death, there was a mighty impulse—time. Meanwhile, he expressed his worries that people nowadays were impatient and unwilling to wait, and youths were often desperate and therefore losing their hopes due to trivial setbacks. For that, he noted: "Hope, on its own, grows out of the soil of time." Therefore, holding a tranquil attitude towards life, you will find yourself closer to the answer you desire for.

Learn to be a Company of Yourself

"It has been actually people’s process of learning to be a company of themselves since their departure from campus life and youth to middle and old ages."said Bai when he talked about growth. With regard to the phenomenon that an increasing number of students become phubbers, Bai emphasized that "Mobile phones help people kill time, but also kill all the great things along with the boring time." Growth was that, from Bai’s perspective, people were alone yet without feeling lonely. Bai added that it was joyful in life to read books, listen to music, stare blankly and drink tea, and all excellent books embraced outstanding people and their dignified thoughts. He advised students to chat with themselves at least 20 minutes a day.

The Wisdom of Compromise and Tolerance

"Change is a wiser choice than complaint and can only be made by action." Bai supposed that, not popular as it is, compromise is what we must learn. "We do change the world but the world changes us much more greatly." He put forward that people should master the art of "negotiation" for, in his view, life itself was a timeless negotiation. "Negotiation is a process during which the two parties retreat a small step and advance a giant leap together. It is also a driving force for mutual progress." Bai also said compromise was not a condition of tolerating all things or standing still. Taking falling in love and marriage as examples, he interpreted the art of compromise, which was, couples fell in love with each other because of their merits and accompanied each other due to tolerance of their demerits. "Rather than just complaining, youths should spare no effort to become builders."

During the interaction, Bai discussed heatedly with the audience about the issues they were interested in. "Do not forget where you are and you are right here."Bai ended his lecture with those words to encourage youths to cherish their time, live in the present and take their due responsibilities.

(Translated by Yang Kaiyan)