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10 Life Lessons From Confucius (Confucianism)



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life lessons that we can learn from

Confucius

Confucius was one of the greatest

eastern philosophers of all time whose

teachings deeply influenced East Asian

life and thought his philosophical

movement Confucianism emphasizes

morality honesty the importance of

social relationships and the belief that

man is fundamentally good and capable of

changing evolving and improving so here

are 10 lessons we can all learn from one

of China's most iconic historical

figures number one learn to see beauty

in everything Confucius says everything

has its beauty but not everyone sees it

in today's world our life is mostly made

up of routines and patterns many of us

live according to the rules that are

socially acceptable within the realm of

comfort while living repetitively and

dreaming of ways to escape in the modern

business of life it's hard to appreciate

the everyday beauty there are many

things in life that can irritate you

like traffic your kids throwing fits

stepping on Lego your computer running

slowly your pet throwing up on the

carpet losing your keys or your phone

just randomly stops working we always

fail to see the silver linings or the

bright side in reality the simple fact

that you're in the world and able to

experience anything at all is little

short of a miracle the sheer complexity

of all the events that have had to

happen in order for you to even exist

and to have a computer in the first

place to go slow is simply mind-boggling

consider just within your own body how

much is going on right now that just

happens without you even thinking about

it imagine if you had to think about

breathing or making your heartbeat or

even digesting your lunch all of this

and so much more is going on just so you

can watch this video and understand it

without dying it

that incredible and this detail doesn't

just exist in us it's in everything

around us so this means boredom is a

fiction that we tell ourselves instead

of admitting laziness to truly

understand this is to see that there

really is beauty detail and interest in

everything around you from the pile of

manure to the flowers that grow from it

if we look for the beauty in every

moment we can gain new insights and

understanding in our own lives and the

world were all living those lives in

number two moral values start at home in

the words of Confucius the strength of a

nation derives from the integrity of the

home moral values are a set of

principles guiding us to evaluate what's

right or wrong moral values such as

integrity determination loyalty

truthfulness honesty giving respect to

each other and so on helps shape the

character and personality of individuals

according to Confucius these moral

values can be best adopted at an

individual family level Confucius saw

the family as the sole origin and

foundation of the nation the family

being the smallest unit in the nation

plays a very important role in ensuring

the stability and progress of that

nation the principle adopted by

Confucius that people should not do to

others what they don't want to be done

to them is best applicable in the family

level it means people should treat

others as they would want to be treated

themselves as in if one wants to be

treated a certain way one should treat

others in that way if everyone were to

follow this rule everyone would be

treated well and by ensuring order and

harmony at an individual family level it

becomes automatic that the nation as a

whole will follow suit this is so

because a nation is a combination of

homes which are made up of different

family members it's only by cultivating

love among those family members that the

nation can in turn demonstrate love

without love and mutual respect by all

family members whether parent or child

it's impossible to instill the high

moral values we'd like to see everyone

achieve as such the more families that

do demonstrate mutual love

respect the more harmonious the

coexistence of the wider community where

the local national or global will

improve number three never do anything

half-heartedly to quote Confucius

wherever you go go with all your heart

some people succeed over others because

they give 100% to whatever they commit

to most of us commit to something but

usually give it a half-hearted effort it

means that you don't have that much

energy for it

you're not that motivated for it or

interested in doing it or inspired but

still participate in whatever you're

doing

most of us waste too much of our time

money and energy by not committing

wholeheartedly to something that's

important to us putting a half-hearted

effort into things that matter in life

means we're constantly falling short of

our potential our half-hearted effort is

still exhausting it consumes energy

without producing results it's stressful

it makes us feel like a failure when

we're not it's just that we haven't

fully committed to something which is

why we need to do everything

wholeheartedly we need to give our 100%

doing things wholeheartedly means you

bring your whole self to work and you

lead from your heart this way you'll be

more likely to be the person who cares

more shares more understands more says

more feels more hears more and is liked

more you can accomplish anything if you

do it with all your heart

number four never give up in the words

of Confucius it does not matter how

slowly you go as long as you do not stop

Confucius teaches us that it doesn't

matter if you're moving a step closer or

an inch closer to your dreams the most

important thing is that you keep moving

forward we all love to fall in love with

the idea of something grand

we love the thought of being a famous

tech entrepreneur far more than we love

sitting in a dark room for years on end

learning how to code and when we hit the

first roadblock we assume failure and

give up entirely because knowledge and

master over ask

wasn't the driving force the shiny

reward at the end was we need to

understand that success is a work in

progress the truth is you're going from

point A to point B so if you're

consistent well it might not happen in

the time frame that you'd expected

you'll surely reach where you want to go

in the end if you put in the daily

required effort and keep on developing

your skills just as there are common

steps that people take to achieve

success there are common steps people

take to fail so even if you do get stuck

do not change your goals no matter what

the difficulty is just change the

approach you take to get it number five

everyone has wisdom to share Confucius

says if I am walking with two other men

each of them will serve as my teacher I

will pick out the good points of the one

and imitate them and the bad points of

the other and correct them in myself

this is one of the great lessons of life

according to Confucius everyone around

us is a lesson and we should try to

learn everything we can from them there

are some things that we learn from books

by going to classes watching

presentations or listening to lectures

other things we learn from people by

observing analyzing imitating practicing

when we're open to learning from others

we benefit from their experience and we

can inherit their wisdom and knowledge a

good example is asking friends how they

find time to read one book a week the

best way to learn from people around you

is by having friends who are better than

yourself your friends are a guiding

light to your future as you are often

headed where they already are therefore

surround yourself with friends who are

going where you want to go who share

your values and convictions and drive

each other to be the best self you can

be learning from others is not a passive

process but one that requires work and

commitment on our part so pick out

qualities in others which you admire and

implement them and use negative

qualities as reminders of where you

don't want to go or get rid of bad

traits you might have yourself there is

always something to be learned

number six ignore gossips to quote

Confucius if they spit at you behind

your back it means you're ahead of them

there are seven billion people on this

planet out of which will roughly

encounter 25 to 30 thousand of them in

our brief lifetime at any phase of your

life there are going to be people who

are going to be more fortunate than you

and there are going to be people who are

going to be less fortunate unfortunately

some of them will gossip about your

fortunes behind your back

it feels pretty awful to have people

talk about you behind your back but

people usually do this for three main

reasons one when they can't reach your

level two when they don't have what do

you have and three when they try to copy

your lifestyle but can't a jealous

person won't come and tell you that he's

jealous of you normally say it directly

to one of his friends but instead his

jealousy will appear in the form of

hatred resentment and gossiping the

people who envy you the most are the

ones who are most in need of what you

possess for example your millionaire

friends never going to envy you if you

bought a new average priced car

but your friend who has no car is the

one who's most likely going to be

jealous of you good or bad people are

going to talk focus on the people who

care about and support you not the

people who gossip number seven think of

the consequences in the words of

Confucius when anger arises think of the

consequences

according to Confucius if were angry at

someone then we're defeated by them we

in the West believe that anger is not

always bad we believe that anger is

justified if one is angry at the right

time and in the right context

Confucius just like Seneca believes that

there is no such thing as a good amount

of anger and it is extremely important

to think of the consequences when an

emotion like anger arises anger is a

powerful emotion and it may have

destructive results for you and those

closest to you anger can lead to

arguments physical fights physical abuse

assault and self-harm

hence whenever you feel you're about

to get angry remove yourself from the

situation that's provoking you or

withhold all actions until you feel

yourself in a completely tranquil state

of mind to think of the consequences try

reading deep breathing meditating or

some other activity you find relaxing

this can relieve the tension in your

muscles and help you relax even after

taking the time off if you feel that

you're wronged you should choose to

forgive and move on because at the end

of the day to be wronged is nothing

unless you continue to remember it

number 8

practice the art of silence has been

learn from Confucius silence is a true

friend who never betrays silence is a

rare privilege in the modern world when

we're not talking with others we fill

our sonic space with different types of

media and with the advent of podcasts we

can always have something to listen to

for some of us the absence of sound is

almost startling as we feel

automatically compelled to turn on the

TV or radio

there are times throughout the day to

integrate silence into it if you keep an

eye out for them if you're a

stay-at-home parents you can dedicate

the first 15 minutes of nap time to a

silent house if you work consider

leaving your phone at your desk and

going for a walk on your lunch break

uninterrupted take five minutes during

the day to stare out the window and be

in the present moment silence is an

inner state in the absence of silence

you tend to get overtaken by the mind

body and emotions the clutter prevents

you from listening to your psyche and

soul to listen to your soul you need to

establish a strong relationship with

silence without it we might remain

unaware of many things about ourselves

silence

empowers you to think things through and

come up with solutions because it's only

in silence that you can truly listen

well that you can listen to the deepest

wisdom of your soul number nine practice

filial piety in the words of Confucius

there are three degrees of filial piety

the highest is being a credit to our

parents the second is not disgracing

them the lowest is being able simply

to support them filial piety is how

children show their gratitude by

repaying their parents for their

kindness love and caring people from

Asia are often more communal and family

orientated therefore children have more

respect for their elders and will take

care of aging parents in their own homes

until they die this is in contrast to

the majority of us in the West who are

unusually focused on individualism and

youth as a result it's all too common

for us to show little respect for

extended families and aging parents

we're so busy developing our own careers

raising kids and being absorbed in our

own lives that we tend to farm our aging

parents out to institutions according to

Confucius children should take care of

their aging parents for several reasons

to begin with they helped us to grow and

without them we wouldn't even be in this

world they provided us love shelter

clothes and medicine whatever we needed

at that time they also provided

education and taught us how we could

survive in the world parents always try

to prepare their children for the future

and they want to see them successful and

happy therefore one can argue that they

have a right to expect something from

their children in their old age so even

if you are far away occupied with your

busy life

you can practice filial piety by

maintaining frequent contact visiting

them more often stepping out with them

sending the money and so on our parents

made a lot of sacrifices for us in their

lives so we as children should show our

love and gratitude for elderly parents

by taking care of them number 10 embrace

getting older in our final piece of

wisdom from Confucius he tells us old

age believe me

is a good and pleasant thing it is true

you are gently shouldered off the stage

but then you are given such a

comfortable front stall as a spectator

when we turn 40 we suddenly find

ourselves slowing down gaining weight

and losing muscle tone we're less

energized than a few short years ago

a new study has concluded that people

with a positive attitude about getting

older live longer and have better mental

health

those who look at Aging

a bad thing are more likely to suffer a

heart attack a stroke or died several

years sooner hence we need to change our

perspective although there can be

declines in health and income the vast

majority of older adults enjoy

improvements in the emotional aspects of

life because they're more focused on

positive information while you might not

be able to do all the things you once

did when you were younger

there are ways you can compensate by

finding other activities that are just

as rewarding like finding something to

commit to improving whether it's tennis

or chess you can also focus on helping

others especially younger people we

really shouldn't forget the alternative

to aging is dying young we really hope

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