Four Things That Endanger a Society

September 30, 2013 at 10:00 am | Posted in Asia, Culture, Discoveries, Discussion, Good Advice, Moments from History, Reflections, Relevance to Today, Stories from China | Leave a comment
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September 18, 2013 | By Li Qing

Around 2,400 years ago, about 10 nations coexisted in China, and each had its own king. One day, King Hui of the Wei Nation invited the other kings to his magnificent palace for a feast. Among them was King Gong of the Lu Nation (the nation where Confucius was from). When King Hui proposed a toast, King Gong told a story about the factors that lead to a nation’s destruction:

“Yidi was good at making wine, and she once gave some to King Yu, who tasted it and liked it very much. Nonetheless, from then on, King Yu abstained from wine and distanced himself from Yidi. Yu said, ‘I know some kings in the future will ruin their nations for greed for good wine.’

“When King Huan of the Qi Nation felt hungry one night, renowned cook Yi Ya prepared a delicious meal for him. King Huan really liked it and ate a lot, which made it difficult for him to wake up the next morning. King Huan then said, ‘Some kings in the future will lose their nations over their fondness for delicious food.’

“After King Wen of the Jin Nation obtained the beautiful Nan Zhiwei, he indulged himself in sensuous pleasure for three days before returning to his work on national affairs. He thus sent Nan away and said, ‘Future kings will ruin their nations for over indulging sensuously in beauty.’

“When King Zhao went up a tower to view the scenery surrounding his kingdom, he was deeply impressed by the great mountains and rivers. He was so impressed that he almost forgot everything else. He thus promised to never again forget his duties and warned others: ‘Someone in the future will lose his nation after exerting too much effort in building grand structures and being too moved by beautiful scenes.’

King Gong then concluded that any one of the four indulgences from the story could lead a nation to destruction. During this feast, however, King Hui had gathered all four types of pleasure, which could be an alerting sign.

King Hui heard these words and wholeheartedly agreed with King Gong.

Using History as a Guide

The story offers insight into the many examples of this kind from history. The Zhou, Shang, Qin, and Sui Dynasties all came to an end as a result of over-indulgences by their rulers. When kings have recklessly sought for physiological or material pleasure, they’ve doomed themselves for destruction.

Similar things are also taking place in contemporary China. Especially over the past two decades, seeking material pleasure has become a stronger and more accepted trend. Government officials now go all out in the pursuit of self interest. Officials in all spheres of society openly accept bribes at the demise of society’s well-being. Mass food consumption and untended waste from public works projects are skyrocketing at unprecedented levels. Prostitution, including the exploitation of under-aged young girls, is now commonplace. Moral degeneration on the whole has reached an unprecedented level.

After recognizing the communist regime’s corruption and inevitable deterioration, especially through reading the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party nearly 140 million people have publicly declared their intentions to quit the Chinese Communist Party and its affiliated organizations. Such an occurrence is an encouraging sign for China and the rest of the world.

Chinese version available

CATEGORY: Traditional Art and Culture

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Honor Heaven and Understand One’s Responsibility, Follow the Dao That Guides One’s Behavior

August 5, 2012 at 2:20 pm | Posted in Children's Stories, Discussion, Good Advice, Life Lessons, Moments from History, Reflections, Relevance to Today, Stories from China | Leave a comment
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( The ancient Chinese honored and respected heaven’s will. They believed that when one is attuned to heaven’s will one can understand human affairs and act righteously. The ancients observed, studied, and hypothesized about the movement, changes, and rules that govern the universe and nature. The findings allowed them to understand the ever-evolving human society and the rules that govern mankind’s existence. Based on that, they deduced that the principles of moral conduct should harmonize with heaven and earth and prevent one from deviating from the righteous path.

According to Shi Ji (Records of the Grand Historian), there lived a virtuous court official, Sima Jizhu, in the kingdom of Chu. He studied in Chang An, an ancient capital of China during the Han, Sui, and Tang dynasties and now called Xi’an. He was well versed in The Book of Changes and the teachings of the Yellow Emperor and Lao Zi. Besides that, he was highly educated and had great foresight. One time, court officials Song Zhong and Jia Yi paid a visit to Sima Jizhu to ask his thoughts on human affairs. At the time, Sima Jizhu was having a discussion with three students. When they noticed Song Zhong and Jia Yi, they invited them to join the discussion. Song Zhong and Jia Yi responded that they only wished to listen. Sima Jizhu continued to talk about the movements of heaven and earth, the sun and the moon, and their relationship to benevolence and righteousness, as well as the good and the bad omens. Everything was explained in an organized and logical manner. Song Zhong and Jia Yi both listened attentively and with great respect.

Sima Jizhu continued, “A gentleman is straightforward when offering good advice and does not expect to be repaid when giving praise. He kindly and honestly points out other’s mistakes, keeping the nation’s and people’s well-being in mind. A genuinely virtuous person will not accept a government position if he does not think he can it perform well, nor will he take a salary that exceeds his efforts. He is not ecstatic when offered a position, nor is he worried about losing his job; the key is that he does things conscientiously. On the other hand, a wicked person who is hungry for power uses his authority to threaten others. He uses the law as a tool to force out the righteous person and exploits the common people. He will do anything for personal gain, and that is despicable. A wicked official does not enforce the law to prevent robberies, does not take care of and reform the neighboring tribes when they do not surrender, and doesn’t stop other wicked ones from uprising and obstructing the path of the sages. All kinds of disasters occur as a result of degenerated moral values.”

Song Zhong and Jia Yi were impressed and humbled by Sima Jizhu’s speech and commented, “It is true that good moral values lead to peace, whereas power and force lead to danger. One should learn and follow the laws of heaven in one’s activities, and become a righteous instead of a wicked person who caters to the powerful.”

After the fall of the Qin Dynasty, the Marquis of Dongling was relegated to the level of a common person. One day he visited Sima Jizhu to talk about his future. Sima Jizhu asked, “What do you want to know about your future?” Marquis of Dongling replied, “I’ve heard that when a bothersome smell becomes strong, it needs to be aired; when the temperature gets too hot, the wind will blow; and what is congested needs to be aired. From winter to spring, what is curled up will be extended. Things rise and fall, and they come and go. However, I still have doubts and would like to hear your advice.” Sima Jizhu said, “You seem to understand the principles, then why do you need me to talk about your future?” Marquis of Dongling replied, “I don’t seem to thoroughly understand the profound meanings of what I have heard and hope you can guide me.” Sima Jizhu responded, “Who does the heavenly law favor? It favors those who are virtuous. When a virtuous person conducts himself according to heavenly law and does things to benefit the common people, the gods will help him. From dusk till dawn, flowers wilt and bloom; winter leaves and spring arrives; all things wane and will be reborn. There is always a calm and deep pool at the end of the rapid river water. There must be a deep canyon underneath the high mountain ridge. There is cause and effect, and all matters are predestined. When a person cultivates to become virtuous, good manners and etiquette will follow.”

Ancient Chinese have believed and followed the principle of “man and heaven are one.” They knew that there was a direct relationship between cosmic changes and changes in human affairs, and that good deeds will be rewarded and bad deeds will receive retribution. Therefore, they placed great importance on elevating their moral standards. However, the Chinese Communist Party has acted against heaven’s will and done things that are against the laws of heaven and earth, morality, and the cosmic law, thus, creating countless tragedies. Their actions will not be tolerated by the heavenly principles.


Reflections on Life: Doing Good is Like Climbing a Mountain, Doing Evil is Like Being Caught in a Landslide

May 11, 2012 at 10:20 am | Posted in Discussion, Good Advice, Life Lessons, Reflections, Relevance to Today, Stories from China | Leave a comment
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Guan Ming

[] When I was a kid, my mom taught me: “It’s easy for one to learn bad things, but difficult to learn good things. Moreover, once a person learns bad things, it is more difficult for them to learn good things.” I didn’t really understand her words at the time. After I grew up, I gradually learned that in order to be a good person, sometimes one needs to give up their self-interest. Bad people in the human world have no scruples. They regard harming others to benefit themselves as a universally accepted principle. If we look at this world without foresight, it seems that good people always suffer losses while bad people profit at the expense of other people whenever they can. However, five years or ten years later, if we look at those good and bad people again, it will be a totally different situation. In short, “good will be rewarded and evil will be punished.” Good people do good and accumulate virtue, so they generally live longer. Although they may not be rich in material wealth, they are carefree and broad-minded. Even if they run into danger, sometimes in the end their bad luck is turned into good. People who do all kinds of evil, however, are punished at different times. They either run into unexpected calamities and get killed, or die from an incurable disease without any chance to regret.

“Doing good is like climbing a mountain, doing evil is like being caught in a landslide” is from “Guo Yu – Zhou Yu Xia” by Zuo Qiuming. If you think of this sentence from a higher level, when people do good and accumulate virtue, their moral standard keeps rising. Although it is as difficult as climbing a mountain, their moral standard does indeed move up toward nobleness and brightness. Evil people are the opposite. The result of doing evil and helping a tyrant to victimize his subjects will only lead a person to their ruin. Their fate is just like a landslide, going towards the bad and getting worse rapidly. In fact, whether to do good or to do evil comes down to just a single thought. Therefore, whether to do good or evil is our own decision. The ancients said: “Don’t do an evil thing just because it is small and don’t skip doing a good thing just because it is small.” All the saints in ancient times regarded preaching goodness as their responsibility. They patiently persuaded people to do good. That’s because they really cared about people’s future. Only evil people stir up people’s hatred, set one party against another and sometimes even force people to do bad things.

Looking at China today, a lot of people have been brainwashed by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). They indulge themselves in eating, drinking and playing in a quite uninhibited manner, forgetting about the matter of life and death. They don’t care about conscience and neither do they listen to others’ earnest advice. Some even regard others’ good advice as not worthy of serious consideration and call the police to arrest those who give kind advice. However, what they don’t know is that the only way to be saved is to do good. The result of rejecting kindness is definitely hopelessness. In the last sixty years, the CCP has maintained power using lies and violence. It killed eighty million Chinese people in the last several decades. If you calm down and think about it, it is easy to differentiate between good and evil. Whoever is or once was a member of CCP or its affiliated organizations must renounce the Party publicly in order to abandon the evil ways and follow goodness. Whether to be good or evil, this single thought will decide one’s future. One who does good will have a bright future while one who does evil will be eliminated. This reward or punishment are done without the slightest error, as the heavenly principles are the most fair and righteous!

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