JINAN, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) -- Confucius temples in Qufu City, the hometown of Confucius in east China's Shandong Province, held online and offline ceremonies on Thursday to commemorate the 2,574th anniversary of the ancient philosopher's birth.
This year's ceremony had many highlights, including the performance of young students reciting Confucian classics. The event also set up a Virtual Reality (VR) platform, allowing people to partake in the commemoration online and to enjoy a moment of tradition digitally.
Its online part attracted more than 60 Confucius temples and other cultural clubs and institutions from home and abroad, as well as over 70 media outlets while livestreaming over three hours of an offline event to the global audience.
Putting yellow ribbons on, the participants entered the venue in a long procession and laid flowers before the Confucius statue. Zhou Naixiang, governor of Shandong Province, read the eulogy and led the guests to bow three times. The grand ceremony concluded around 10 a.m. on Thursday.
In recent years, Shandong has combined its unique traditional cultural resources with novel digitization through high-tech means to empower the traditional Confucian culture with new expressions, thus helping foster a worldwide cultural consensus on the ancient philosophy.
On the walls of an animation company in Jining City of Shandong, the anime works featuring Chinese traditional cultural elements, with a total length of over 1,000 minutes, easily capture visitors' attention. Most of the art pieces are about various Confucian ideas.
"Modern information technology has become a new way to present the traditional culture and to amplify its international influence," said Chen Hongqing, head of the company.
Over the past few years, Chen's team has made digital book adaptions from Confucian ideas. The books are now used in over 400 Confucius Institutes and 700 Confucius classrooms worldwide.
In Qufu, the Temple of Confucius, the Kong Family Mansion, and the Cemetery of Confucius are widely recognized as the landmarks of Confucian culture, which were all listed in World Cultural Heritage in 1994.
However, in modern days, the city's Nishan Sacredland, Confucius Museum, and Confucius Institute have become the new signature tourism destinations.
The Confucius Museum immediately immerses the visitor into the life of Confucius upon entering, with a welcoming film displayed on a massive acrylic wall thanks to modern high-tech means.
According to Deputy Curator Yang Jinquan, modern technologies, including multimedia and intelligent mobile terminals, have given tourists access to the charm of Confucian culture. Even those overseas can "visit" the museum through its VR platform and other digital methods on its website.
Confucius (551 B.C.-479 B.C.), an educator and thinker of ancient China, has influenced countless generations of Chinese society.