1. Character Building (修身)
a ) Guard against greed (戒貪) [ii]
In general, anything that develops too fast will fall apart just as quickly, whereas a slow and steady development is more assured of yielding favourable results. Plants that unravel into full bloom in early morning may wither and fall by the evening, but the slow-growing pine trees will not wither even in the extreme winter cold. Hence, a Superior Person * does not hasten to achieve results.
Scroll 26: Wei Zhi, Vol. 2
*Superior person,( junzi 君子) deserves a special mention here because it is a central notion in Confucian philosophy. It embodies an ideally ethical and capable person, sometimes meaning a power holder, which is its original sense. The term is a compound word composed of two written characters, which separately means “ruler’s son”. Under the changing social conditions of the Warring States period, the concept of birthright was replaced by the notion of an “aristocracy of merit,” and in the Confucian school, the term junzi came to denote an “ethical aristocrat” rather than a future king. The hallmark of the junzi was his complete internalization of the virtue of ren (benevolence) and associated qualities, such as, yi (righteousness) and full socialization through ritual skills. — Bob Eno, The Analects of Confucius, 2010.
Credit for excerpt:
Qunshu Zhiyao, The Compilation of Books and Writings on the Important Governing Principles, is a compilation containing advice, methods, and historical notes on the successes and failures of the imperial government of China. This compilation takes us through thousands of years of Chinese political thinking, and offers us some valuable leadership principles which not only helped the great Tang Emperor Taizong to establish the glorious Reign of Zhenguan, but which will also prove valid as points of reference for contemporary leaders. As for the general public, this compilation is a great source of inspiration for self-improvement, family management and human relations.
Qunshu Zhiyao is made up of extracts from various classics, histories, and the works of the saints and sages. It consists of a total of 65 books compiled in 50 scrolls/volumes. This version of Qunshu Zhiyao 360 groups the contents of Qunshu into six chapters, namely: The Way of a Leader, The Art of a Minister, Esteeming Virtues, On the Subject of Administration, Respectfully Cautious, and Discerning.
Title: “The Governing Principles of Ancient China”
Based on 360 passages excerpted from the original compilation of Qunshu Zhiyao (Compilation of Books and Writings on the Important Governing Principles).
First edition, May 2012
Second edition, October 2012
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