From Confucius to Francis Bacon, the great minds of all eras have all paid attention to study and deemed it as the only way to wisdom and truth.
In the past five years, the top leaders of the Communist Party of China (CPC) have impressed both local people and the international community by putting emphasis on study.
In the period, 44 successive collective study sessions have been held with the participation of the 20-member-strong Political Bureau of the CPC.
The top leaders, General Secretary Hu Jintao included, have been lectured by top experts on subjects varying from the global economy and regional security to issues at home including education, food safety, employment and rural development.
"If we do not study, do not persevere in study or do not study hard, we will be left behind and unable to shoulder our great missions," Hu once told the entire Party.
The learning sessions have contributed to a democratic and scientific decision-making process of the Party leadership. For one thing, there have already been evidence in policies which have drawn advice from the lectures.
By drawing upon the latest opinions and research results on issues of great importance, the top leaders of the Party have been enriched by updated knowledge as well as an open-minded approach. This in turn will empower the Party with better governance.
To a larger extent, the willingness to learn and the setting up of a mechanism on learning in the Party are testimony to its resolve to advance with the times.
It also opens a window for the outside world to have a glimpse into the Party leadership's focus of attention on pressing social and public issues.
The exemplary effect of the practice of learning by the top leaders has been profound.
The practice of collective learning has also been followed by others including the country's top legislative and advisory bodies.
Meanwhile, learning sessions and training projects have been held at different levels to help Party members better understand and follow the Party's new visions on building a harmonious society and promoting a scientific development perspective.
(China Daily 10/19/2007 page9)