Fun Facts about Chinese Culture and History

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Confucius - Founder of Confucianism in Chinese Culture 

Kong Qiu (551 B. C. — 479 B. C.), honorific name as Zhong Ni, was respected as Kong Zi or Confucius.

 

As the founder of the Confucianism in Chinese culture, he was a knowledgeable ideologist, a benevolence educationist, a great philosopher, and an exceptional historian. 

Confucius' Poor, Hard Working Early Life

Confucius was a descendant of a king of a perished kingdom, but this didn’t provide him any privileges.

 

Because his mother was a low status concubine, and his father passed away when he was little, Kong Qiu lived a poverty life in his childhood, and never had a chance to attend schools that were only for nobles at that time. 

After he was old enough to work, he had managed storehouse and grazed sheep for noble families.

 

During that period, he also read many books and taught many students, rich and poor, noble and humble. 

Unsuccessful Travels and Unappreciated Confucius

When he turned 30, Confucius became more and more ambitious in regard to politics; so he visited many lords to introduce his ideology.

 

This was the Spring and Autumn Period, an era when several states kept competing and fighting; therefore, his benevolence theory seemed not appealing.

 

Then, in the next decades, he kept traveling to different states and presenting his ideas, even after he had suffered countless rejections, robberies, and starvations.   

Short Term But Excellent Official 

In his 50s, Confucius was finally assigned a political position, and soon got promoted for several times.

 

He did a good job, as a minister, bringing civilians better lives, but also displeased the entire ruling class.

 

Afterwards, Confucius was forced to resign and started his traveling again, hoping to find another king to implement his ideology, when he was already 55 years old.

 

Similarly, he suffered the same difficulties as his previous travelings; but this time, he was much older, and many of his students had left him and became rich and powerful. 

Writing and Editing of Masterpieces in Chinese Culture

Some years later, Confucius' beloved son, wife, and favorite disciples all passed away. He was extremely sad and decided to stop traveling.

 

Then he started to edit and write books, most of which became masterpieces of Confucianism in Chinese culture.

 

A few years later, he passed away old and sick in his hometown, and left the world nothing but his brilliant ideology. 

Confucius grew up in poverty, but he has the most honorable and moral standard and ambition.

 

He had suffered countless disappointments and adversities, but he never gave up on his dream.

 

He had witnessed numberless cruel slaughters and wars, but the main essence concept of his ideology was benevolence.

 

Education 

  • Everyone has the right to be educated. Confucius was the first person in the history of China who started private school and lectures. Since then, education was no longer limited to royal and noble families.  

  • Education methodology should be different, based on individuals. Every student could be taught well, as long as pedagogy is good enough and proper. Enlightenment is the essential part, and it’s never too late to learn.

  • Education contents include literature, etiquette, music, art, toxophily, science, etc. But the most important subject is the moral cultivation, which includes benevolence and loyalty. 

 

Politic

  • Adhering to strict hierarchy and decent etiquettes are the essence of a well organized kingdom. 

  • Monarchs should apply benevolence ideology, in which they take civilians’ interests as a priority. Ministers and generals should be loyal, intelligent, and brave, while civilians stay diligent and behave. 

  • Ordinary people should be decent, honest, and do their jobs diligently, while accomplished and intelligent people should participate in the politics.

Moral 

  • People are born good, and the postnatal environment may change their behaviors and concepts. Therefore, to enlighten, inspire and maintain human being’s kind nature is the solid foundation of a stable and harmonious society. 

  • Decent people should put loyalty and faith before financial benefits, and follow the doctrine of the mean. 

 

Main Ideas of Confucius