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A few learning moments happened in my campus life

Updated: Jan 18, 2024 By Wang Xiaoting at Taiyuan University of Technology Print
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Peach blossom on the campus [Photo provided to]

The moment when I received my admission letter was very ordinary. There was no surprise and no screaming. Sitting on the high-speed railway, I answered the phone from my mother. "We have got your college admission! Do you want us to leave it unopened until you come back?" I could tell from her voice that she was extremely exciting and pleasant. At that moment, a subtle combination of regret and relief hang over me. After all, I've tried my best and could finally bid farewell to the vicious high school. "Whatever. Hope there will be less pressure in university." Gazing at the fast moving scenery out of the window, I muttered to myself.

However, the path never went as smooth as I hoped. Changes in life present some emotional, mental and spiritual hurdles for me to jump over and it's common to feel disappointed. About one month later, I was intimidated by the fierce strength of intensive competition. It had once been a usual part of my life that I was wobbling in a daze while others charging in their fixed direction. The atmosphere was so terrible and threatening that I kept questioning myself and paying close attention to every movement of others. Just like the poem said "On the side of the sunken boat, thousands of sails pass by. In front of the sick tree, thousands of plants thrive." At that time, I thought a silly way to bury my head in the sand, just like an ostrich – I went to classes as normal but refused to pay any extra effort. I seated myself in the library but let my mind wander out of space at its ease. I thought it was the perfect remedy for my anxiety.

And something occurred. It successfully offered me salvation like a miracle.
One day, on the English class, our teacher shared something with us. She said, "Some of you, maybe the majority, want to hold the "real self". Think it carefully, however, you are just using this as a decent pretext to covering your initial intention that you don't want to follow the rules or to improve your current situation. There is no wrong in being the true self. But what is more important is to become better self."

I was enlightened. The epiphany finally arrived: I should try to change my mind instead of being treated as a clown by fate. It was just like magic because when I started to concentrate on my own step and my own mission, what kind of success others had achieved seemed to have no influence on me any more since it has already clear to me that my determination and sturdy independence could tide me over the difficulties in hard time.

In another class, the professor explained to us the true meaning of "soul". She said that man is a thinking reed. Although human being is so vulnerable that can be destroyed almost by any power in the world, he is still noble. That's because he knows clearly about death, both in physical and physiological sense, and the advantages of the universe which could be utilized by him while the opposite side knows nothing. It is soul that makes people noble.


Puppies sleep on the grass on my campus. [Photo provided to]

She pointed out that soul is the ability to love, namely, compassion. Human growth is a process of experimentation, trials, and errors, ultimately leading to wisdom. The basic lesson of it is compassion. Without this essential lesson, we remain trapped in our limited view and unable to translate mistakes into valuable learning opportunities. To be compassionate means to think what it would feel like to be that person we are judging and imagine putting ourselves in her reality. It's a good way for us to evaporate the judgment encrusted around heart. Compassion also will open the door to the possibility of forgiveness and will allow us to release those judgments that are holding us in self-contempt. That's the power of soul.

Another heartfelt learning moment took place when I noticed that animals in our campus never showed any fear towards people. When you walk through the streets, the sparrows which are pecking breads on the ground never fly away even there are only distance of two centimeters between the birds and the people. They would even dash back and forth and shock us instead. Groups of dogs would lay down comfortably on the grassland in the golden sunlight. You will find a wounded kitten disappeared a few days and then returned, healthy, strong and energetic. All of these scenes touched my heart as they told me one thing – it's a world full of love. What kind of thing did people do could make the timid-nature birds, the sensitive cats and the dogs show sheer reliance and trust? It's the pure love. We barely disturb each other but both of us know that there is love between us. I think it maybe the highest state of harmony and the true essence of Taoism.

The UNESCO defines the main mission for college students as "four learn" – learn to do, learn to be, learn to be with others and learn to how to learn.

I still remember the moment when I stepped into the campus that September, dragging heavy luggage without saying goodbye to my parents. I didn't want them to see the tears welling up in my eyes. Busting crowd jammed the street. I told myself "Come on! The journey of your college life begins today and you need to acquire something!"

Now, looking back at the years passing by, I could say with great confidence that I have grown and expanded in various dimensions in accordance with the UNESCO's requirements. They are the supplements of my heart which could for certain sustain me during any potential plight in the future.

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