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CONFUCIUS; Beyond Philosophy

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    PHILOSOPHY is a complex topic to discuss. From the outset of civilisation and inception of acquiring knowledge, philosophy is deemed the crux of mind development. The general definition of philosophy is, figuring out the reason and logic behind everything. But the periphery of philosophy is far more wide than we usually muse of it. It is argued that, all the source of knowledge is based upon philosophy and most of the human civilisations stand on the basis of it.

   Talking about Philosophy, we virtually think of ancient Greek philosophy, which is mostly taught at many universities as main course in Philosophy discipline. But in the course of time, Indian, Persian, Chiness and even sometimes African Philosophy are discussed these days. To our delight, Bangladeshi philosophy is flourishing from some 20-30 years back and legends behind this were late Araj Ali Matobbar, Sarder Fazlul Karim, to name a few.

    People, usually are known as Aristatle, Socrates, Cecaro, Plato, Omar Khaiyum, Gautam Buddha are considered, pioneers in the spectrum of Philosophy. Among these philosophers, one in the realm of Chiness Philosophy, queued in the forefront along with aforementioned's, is Confucius (551 BCE–479 BCE). Confucius was china's most revered saint and millions across the globe, respected his brilliance. With unhappy childhood, he was raised in poverty and struggled to survive.

   He was an influential Chinese philosopher, teacher and political figure known for his popular aphorisms and for his models of social interaction. He was born in Qufu, Zhou Dynasty, China in 551 BCE and died in 479 BCE.

   Kong Qui, better known as Confucius, although there is dispute about his birth whether in a poverty-striken or a royal family, but, it is undebatable, he was born when China was in serious ideological crisis. He abandoned his wife and family to improve China's future. Millions rise to prosperity by following his teaching. One can not talk about Chiness history without referring this particular man, Confucius.

   In this present climate, when political turmoil, corruption, human rights violation are our daily-companions, sayings by Confucius, are apposite to heal the wound that exist in the society.

A hand-picked of aphorisms are presented here from the vast treasure of Confucius.

I

"The superior man acts before he speaks, and afterwards speaks according to his actions".....

   A scrutiny research can tell us about those men who left the mark of social service secretly because they do not work for fame or applause. They work because their inner soul demands that. That is why, they prefer action then word. Here, Confucius wanted to project the good leadership quality of a person and urged to be reticent and emphasised on action. By this aphorism, intellectuals can easily be identified in the numerous of ordinary folks.       

II

"When you know a thing, to hold that you know it; and when you do not know a thing, to allow that you do not know it- this is knowledge".....

   With this saying we can presume the essence of honesty in a man's life. Boosting on distorted knowledge one can only demean oneself. Conceding weakness with grace is a noble virtue. We frequently encounter a class of people who rejoice showing off in the society with a very little knowledge. Confucius, here, bewares his followers about this and suggests to confess respective sins without any embarrassment.     

III

"When you have faults, do not fear to abandon them".....

   This aphorism has resemblance with the previous one from the moral point of view. Retaining vices although they are habitual is not a work of wisdom. Admitting faults and quitting them can trigger strong character. "To err is human", said English poet, Alexander Pope. It is natural we make erratum and we have to, unless, we do not want to learn anything. In order to learn something, we must pursue the process where mistake is inevitable. Thus, there is nothing to shy making mistakes; such Confucius used to say.      

IV

" What you do not want to done to yourself, do not do to others".....

   This particular saying bound me to know about Confucius. This one sentence can outrightly change the existing hostility prevailing in the world. When we attempt to hurt a person with a word or action, we should keep in mind the sense of the effect of this word or action, what if, it occurs with us. Giving blues to someone is easier than giving flame. We can break a relation at our caprice, yet, have we thought concerning the ado that takes to fabricate a wholesome relationship? If we have than it is alright, but, if not, it demands a shot.   

V

"The superior man is modest in his speech, but exceeds in his action".....

   Tall talks do not produce any upshot. Man with modest characteristic shows credibility through action, not by words. Rhetorics can only give pleasure for a short while to a person but at the end of the day, people ultimately seek for the action to be done which comes out of the word. If the person fails to keep his word, he do not find any place to conceal his shame. As we can presume, the philosophy of this saying is, using conscience while committing something, preserving in the mind that, whether it is feasible or not, to retain the made promise.       

VI

"Hold faithfulness and sincerity as first principle".....

   Human being, devoid of trust and serenity is nothing but a living dead. These two cardinal principles are the apex of all virtues that serves as the benchmark of moral goodness. A person is only remembered after demise owing to the faithful deeds done by him/her. Making money by deceiving others do not give the peace of mind or do not give a higher position in a society. In the same manner, what sincerity yields, is rare in rudeness. Although, our situation is not always literal or horizontal, nevertheless, we ought to, at least, keep it equilibrium for the betterment of the inner soul.        

VII

"If a man takes no thought about what is distant, he will find sorrow near at hand".....

   Here, Confucius puts significance on prudence that everyone should achieve. We do not have any idea what is awaiting for us; it can go in favour with us or it can not. So, nurturing the habit of effective imagination can rescue a person in advance from imminent catastrophy. It also helps out design future plan logically so everything goes in order.        

 VIII

"When anger rises, think of the consequences".....

   Angry young man and virago woman, beware! The great Confucius left these words only for you people. Getting agitated would have paid you unnecessary worth. Staying calm in unfavourable moment will nothing but benefit you. Anger can emerge in any situation that we usually do not like to be happened. It can trigger commotion and brings fatal consequences. Therefore, showing anger is an act of naivity, yet, some people might think otherwise. But, I personally admire this philosophic doctrine of Confucius.                  

IX

"Study the past of you, would define the future".....

   Past is the way to apprehend what is waiting ahead. It is a skill, to be more specific, a most coveted skill that can shape a person's life and help to evade pitfalls that can occurred while taking big decision. It can frame the way of think in more a logical way so chances of falling into trouble will be deminutive. Historians, writing historical books, not only tought us pertaining our forefathers but also enlightened us to opt for the good. But, sometimes, distorted history can head us to a wrong way, despite that, we should learn authentic history and educate ourselves for a over-wrought free future.          

X

"Our greatest glory is not in never falling but in getting up every time we do".....

   There are a class of people who love to see them as sagacious, who usually do not become victim of any catastrophe. Because, they are self-centered and afraid of taking any challenge. As a consequence, they do not slip while moving. Yet, there are also fairly a good number of people who are born to take risk and succeed in life. Confucius praised latter sort of people and persuade his disciples to pursue this very path. Life has ups and downs and the mentality not to endeavoring to get up from disaster is a work of coward; who has no position in a society, indeed.        

XI

"I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand".....

   Doing is learning. Only theoretical knowledge should not be the method of studying. The Great Confucius' reason of disseminating this aphorism is obvious. Practical skill coupled with general knowledge can serve the true and authentic purpose of learning. Study and work should go hand in hand, or else, the outcome of it will be of no use. Parents should introduce this practice with their children from an early age for their self development.        

XII

"He who will not economize, will have to agonize".....

   Misery is a great vice but to spend money economically is considered as an act of wisdom. None knows what the impending future has to give us. Future is enigmatic as well as unknown to everyone, irrepective of intellectuals, philosophers, scientists and so forth. People can suffer from dire need of money in their crisis but will end up crying out in a tone of depression if not given undivided attention on monetary issues beforehand. But wasting money for ostentation can take person in a deep dark cave of disaster where the light of hope never reaches. 

XIII

"Forget injuries, never  kindness".....

   Human mind does not serve justly in every phase of life. Sometimes they make mistake unconsciously and sometimes subconscously. When a person was rude in few days back, today he can be polite. At one time, they can harm us but in another time they can be kind to us. What we reckon by this aphorism, we should forget injuries but never kindness showed to us. Kindness is more benevolent then harm. Yes, it is true, some wounds can never be healed but at least we should try. We should look for the positive aspects of a person to forgive them. Such, His Highness, Confucius said.           

XIV

"To see what is right and not to do it is want of courage".....

   We encounter a trail of people in course of our daily life who practice honesty only in speech but what is ludicrous, they virtually do not touch such uttered words. It means, we ought to do righteous things as a mark of courage and exercise it whole-heatedly. We have lived in this material world and what we would left; our actions, not words. So, being courageous to break macabre things would take a long way ahead for a meaningful life.          

XV

"Everything has its beauty but not everyone sees it".....

   The same statement delivered the great play-wright William Shakespeare but using distinctive words. To watch aesthetics in everything requires a prolific mind. Human being bestowed with a pair of eyes but its apposite utilisation is rare in use. The philosopher Confucius emphasised on the way of looking at everything. By his philosophic acumen, Confucius sensed the importance of understanding beauties in minor things.               

XVI

"Respect yourself and others will respect you".....

   Possessing the sense of self-respect is of paramount importance. Those who lack such virtue, termed as half-human being. People literally do not admire someone who always demean him/herself. Thus, the bottom-line is, respecting self is worthy. When one give him/herself deserving accolades for good works, he/she would understand what should be done to evolve their self or to tackle negativity in him/her. By this manner, he will painstakingly deal everything that comes on his way. And, when people around him observe it, they automatically start to honour. Thus, there is no other way out despite respecting self.

·         FEW MORE FACTS about CONFUCIUS;   

Confucius' social philosophy was based primarily on the principle of "ren" or "loving others" while exercising self-discipline. He believed that ren could be put into action using the Golden Rule, "What you do not wish for yourself, do not do to others."

His philosophy of education focuses on the "Six Arts": archery, calligraphy, computation, music, chariot-driving and ritual. To Confucius, the main objective of being an educator is to teach people to live with integrity. Through his teachings, he strove to resurrect the traditional values of benevolence, propriety and ritual in Chinese society.

Confucius is regarded as a saga who had deserved greater recognition in his time. By the second century B.C., his ideas become the foundation of the state ideology. Today  he is widely considered one of the most influential teachers in Chinese history, broadly speaking, in the world.  

     co n f u c i u s provided some serious thoughts for the barren minds of his countrymen so as to understand individual-self but what is amazing, all these wise-words helped become the corner-stone for building a unified intellectual world. Confucius is a person who was ahead hundred years from his age than the age he belonged. It is really awkward for anyone to arbiter him in one aspect, since, he is a  person with many facets of virtues. There are many clandestine issues concerning him that should be research discreetly to unveil neo concepts to practice for being a good human being or, to be straight, a hostile free globe. With a sombre note we can say, the practice of good ethics are deteriorating day by day and which is a clear sign of lack of exercising philosophy in life.                

Notes:

01. Basic information about Confucius ( including date of birth, family background, political and philosophical ideology) is taken from internet.

02. Aphorisms of Confucius are randomly yet painstakingly chosen.

 

 

 

 

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