Humanities Institute at Beijing Normal University

Claes Ryn and the Vice-Chancellor of Beijing Normal University, Dong Qi, unveil a plaque at the inauguration in May of the new Humanities Institute, Renwen Yanjiusuo, whose work, like that of Ryn’s National Humanities Institute in Washington, D.C., will be inspired by Babbittian humanism and its further philosophical elaboration:

Babbitt, whose wife, Dora, grew up in China, and who often made reference to Confucianism and also analysed the different strands of Taoism, had Chinese followers in the 1930s, and there has long been a renewed interest in him in this country as world events have increasingly borne out his analyses and revealed the relevance of his work. In 2010, Zhang Yuan, one of Ryn’s visiting scholars in Washington, the executive director of the new Humanities Institute, and associate professor in the School of Foreign Languages and Literature at BNU, won the top Chinese academic prize in philosophy and the social sciences for her book on Babbitt’s influence in China.

In this picture can be seen the dignitaries who spoke at the ceremony, in which Ryn was also made Honorary Professor; the woman next to Ryn is the highly influential Yue Daiyun, a famous Chinese intellectual who, perhaps more than anyone else, has promoted Ryn’s work in China – three of his books have been published in Chinese translation – since the late 1990s:

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All original writing and photography © Jan Olof Bengtsson

"A Self-realized being cannot help benefiting the world. His very existence is the highest good."
Ramana Maharshi