Teacher of the teachers for ten thousand generation (萬世師表)

Confucius is respected as Teacher of the Teachers.  He was born 551 BC, five and a half

century before Jesus.  He lived for 72 years until 479 BC.  Up to now, many people still

celebrate his birthday on September 28.  Confucius started his teaching career at the age

of 20. Over 3000 students followed him and 72 became top ranking Government Officials

serving under the Emperor.  He wrote many books, some of them were translated in Latin,

English, French, Japanese and other languages.  These books are being studied in Universities

all over the world.  World leaders and professors always use his quotes in speeches. 

They always say “Confucius said ………..”.

 

Here are some of the “Confucius Said……….”.

Virtue is not left to stand alone. He who practices it will have.

They must often change, who would be constant in happiness or wisdom.

It is not possible for one to teach others, who cannot teach his own family.

The superior man is modest in his speech but exceeds in his actions.

He who merely knows the right principles is not equal to the one who loves him.

To be able under all circumstances to practice five things constitutes perfect virtue; these five things are gravity, generosity of soul, sincerity, earnestness and kindness.

We don't know yet about life, how can we know about death?

Mankind differs from the animals only by a little, and most people throw that away.

If you enjoy what you do, you'll never work another day in your life.

The Master said, (the good man) does not grieve that other people do not recognize his merits. His only anxiety is lest he should fail to recognize theirs.

 

 


Confucius
( 孔夫子, transliterated as Kong Fuzi or K'ung-fu-tzu, lit. "Master Kong", traditionally) was a famous Chinese thinker and social philosopher, whose teachings and philosophy have deeply influenced East Asian life and thought.

His philosophy emphasized personal and governmental morality, correctness of social relationships, justice and sincerity. These values gained prominence in China over other doctrines, such as Legalism or Daoism during the Han Dynasty. Confucius' thoughts have been developed into a system of philosophy known as Confucianism. It was introduced to Europe by the Jesuit Matteo Ricci, who was the first to Latinize the name as "Confucius".

His teachings are known primarily through the Analects of Confucius, a short collection of his discussions with his disciples, which was compiled posthumously.

 

Teachings

In the Analects, Confucius presents himself as a "transmitter who invented nothing". He put the greatest emphasis on the importance of study, and it is the Chinese character for study () that opens the text. In this respect, he is seen by Chinese people as the Greatest Master. Far from trying to build a systematic theory of life and society, he wanted his disciples to think deeply for themselves and relentlessly study the outside world, mostly through the old scriptures and by relating past political events (like the Annals) or past feelings of common people (like the Book of Odes).

In times of division, chaos, and endless wars between feudal states, he wanted to restore the Mandate of Heaven that could unify the "world" (i.e., China) and bestow peace and prosperity on the people. Therefore, Confucius is often considered a great proponent of conservatism, but a closer look at what he proposes often shows that he used (and maybe twisted) past institutions and rites to push a new political agenda of his own: rulers to be chosen on merit, not parentage, rulers who were devoted to their people, and rulers who reached for perfection. Such a ruler would spread his own virtues to the people instead of imposing proper behavior with laws and rules.

One of the deepest teachings of Confucius, one of the hardest to understand from a Western point of view, may have been the superiority of exemplification over explicit rules of behavior. His ethics may be considered one of the greatest virtue ethics. This kind of "indirect" way to achieve a goal is used widely in his teachings by way of allusions, innuendo, and even tautology. This is why his teachings need to be examined and put into context for access by Westerners. A good example is found in this famous anecdote:

 

 

One day, a stables was burnt down,

when returning from court,

Confucius said, "Was anyone hurt?"

He did not ask about the horses.

 

The anecdote is not long, but it is of paramount importance. In his time horses were

perhaps 10 times more valuable than stablemen. By not asking about the horses,

Confucius demonstrated his greatest concern: human beings. Thus, according to many

Eastern and Western commentators, Confucius' teaching can be considered a Chinese

variant of humanism. Confucius also heavily emphasized what he calls "rites and music,"

(禮樂) referring to these social conventions as two poles to balance order and harmony.

While rites, in short, show off social hierarchies, music unifies hearts in shared enjoyment.

He added that rites are not only ways to arrange sacrificial tools, and music is not only

the sound of sticks on a bell. Both are communications between someone's humanity

and his social context; both feed social relationships, such as the five prototypes: between

father and son, husband and wife, prince and subject, elder and youngster, and friend and

friend. Duties are always balanced, and if a subject must obey his ruler, the subject must

tell the ruler when he is wrong.

 

Confucius' teachings were later turned into a corps de doctrine by his numerous disciples

and followers. In the centuries after his death, Mencius (孟子) and Xun Zi (莊子) both

wrote a prominent book on it, and in time, a philosophy was elaborated, which is known

in the West as Confucianism.

 

Want to know more about Confucius? Click the links below

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/confucius

http://www.confucius.org/main01.htm (Multi-languages website)

http://www.chinapage.com/confucius/confucius.html

http://www.friesian.com/confuci.htm

http://www.quotationspage.com/quotes/Confucius (For well known quotes)