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Confucius Should Retire

(Translated by Treasure and Edited by Kaer) 

Confucius is most worthy of respect as a Chinese national thinker and moral leader. His educational theories are especially praiseworthy. However, it would be more of a disaster than a blessing for China to continue regarding him as a saint and promoting him as such to the outside world.

First of all, Confucius understood benevolence, righteousness, courtesy, wisdom, and credibility, and to be gentle, benign, modest, thrifty, and courteous, but he had no regard for Tao. That is to say, Confucius focused only on the branches and leaves, but attached no significance to the roots. However hard he tried, he never strove to reach the faith nor the virtue of being a mortal human. This is why he had regrets, as can be inferred from The Analects of Confucius: Li Ren, namely that having heard Tao in the morning, one may die content in the evening. Confucius never understands Tao, even to his death.

Secondly, Confucius despised laborers and regarded them as inferior beings.

It was written in, The Analects of Confucius : Zi Lu, that his student, Fan Chi once suggested to Confucius that he should learn to plant crops, but Confucius answered him, “I am not as good as the farmers”. Once again Fan Chi asked him to learn to grow vegetables, but Confucius again answered him, “I am not as good as vegetable growers”. After Fan Chi exited, Confucius denigrated him by saying, ”What an inferior person Fan Chi is! Superior people can be courteous but ordinary people will have to revere them, superior people can be righteous but ordinary people will have to obey them, and superior people can be credible but common people will certainly love them. In that way, the common people will always take refuge with their own children, so why would I ever need to or want to do as they do, to plant crops?”

How can one who looks down upon the laborers bring blessings China?

Worse than that, Confucius was unkind. When Fan Chi asked him for advice, not only did Confucius not facilitate his student earnestly and patiently to his face, but he even belittled his student as being “inferior”. Does this kind of “teacher” deserve to be one at all?

As he was wrong macroscopically, it would be to no avail, no matter how hard he strove. He was confused macroscopically, but prudent microscopically.

With the development of modern society, Confucius needs to retire!


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