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  • Writer's picturePeter K F Cheung SBS

Be a Good Person

  1. FADE IN

  2. Act 1

  3. EXT. ROADS - CENTRAL to TAI PO - 13:30

  4. Inside a coach, two STAFF ask PETER at the same time.

  5. STAFF: Have you been to the monastery?

  6. PETER: No. And you two?

  7. STAFF: No.

  8. PETER (V.O.): They've better things to do. I've no inclination to visit religious statues and buildings anywhere.

  9. Pausing.

  10. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): As a colleague is hosting the tour, I join to support and to check out the premises.

  11. Later, we see the upper part of a white Guanyin statue in a distance.

  12. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): That's where we're heading to.

  13. Act 2

  14. INT/EXT. MONASTERY - 14:30

  15. Cinema. Peter and the GROUP watch a short film about the monastery.

  16. PETER (V.O.): I love the film's photography.

  17. Buddha hall. They see some monks praying.

  18. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): When I was a primary school pupil, I did that occasionally, wanting something good to happen.

  19. They see some monks performing rituals.

  20. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I never like religious rituals. I witnessed lots of that here and there.

  21. In a corner, Peter sees offerings on a small table.

  22. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Just a bowl of tofu and a bowl of plain rice.

  23. Pausing.

  24. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): The idol being worshipped doesn't have to practise fasting though.

  25. Then, Peter and the group hear singing or chanting inside chambers.

  26. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): By singing or chanting religious hymns or mantras, can those practising them get connected with higher power?

  27. Guanyin precinct. Peter and the group look up at the giant Guanyin.

  28. GUIDE: It's 76 meters tall. It's always clean because of its fluorocarbon coating.

  29. PETER (V.O.): I see - science is at work.

  30. Museum. Peter and the group see rock or bronze statues of different looks and sizes.

  31. GUIDE: They're bought at auctions...

  32. PETER (V.O.): Many of these were made 1500 years ago...

  33. GUIDE (Cont'd): Believers would risk their lives to save them in emergencies...

  34. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Weren't they the protectors of believers?

  35. Later, following the group, Peter chats with the Guide.

  36. PETER: Are you a Buddhist?

  37. GUIDE: Yes, And you?

  38. PETER: Yes, me too, but not of a religious kind.

  39. GUIDE: I once studied in a Buddhist school...

  40. PETER: Me too. Do you do the rituals?

  41. GUIDE: Yes.

  42. PETER (V.O.): She's a guide here. I'm just a visitor.

  43. They arrive at a coach loading bay.

  44. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): In one human race, there're many religions. Compassion is the common denominator.

  45. Peter boards a coach.

  46. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Difference in religious opinions shouldn't be a reason not to have any friendly relationship.

  47. Peter waves goodbye to the guide.

  48. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): But religious conflicts anywhere can be the cruelest conflicts of all.

  49. Thinking.

  50. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): They're still the dangerous problems in the world today.

  51. Act 3

  52. EXT. ROADS, TAI PO to CENTRAL - 15:00

  53. The coach is passing the Hong Kong Science & Technology Park .

  54. PETER (V.O.): Religion doesn't have to make, build or worship anything. Self-actualization is the key.

  55. The coach is passing through a tunnel.

  56. PETER (V.O.): Like animal training, religion is doing what one is told, no matter what's right.

  57. Thinking.

  58. PETER (V.O.): Morality is doing what's right, no matter what one is told. Be a good person is what matters.

  59. FADE OUT

  60. THE END

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