Confucius, born in 551 B.C. in Tuo, China, was “a transmitter not a maker.” He was born into a very poor family and was raised by his mother. Confucius’s full name was Kong Qiu and his nationality was Chinese. He got married at the age of 19 and had three children, one son and two daughters. Confucius died in 479 B.C., and was buried in the Cemetery of Confucius. Throughout his life, Confucius was a Chinese teacher, editor, politician, thinker, and the founder of the Ru School of Chinese thought (Riegel).
Confucius had two philosophies: social and political. His social philosophy largely revolves around the concept of ren, “compassion” or “loving others” (Riegel). While Confucius believes that people live their live within the parameters firmly established by heaven- which, often, for him means both a purposeful Supreme Being as well as ‘nature’ and its fixed cycles and patterns-he argues that men are responsible for their actions and especially for their treatment of others (Riegel). Confucius has a quote that is very relatable to the Golden Rule we learned as children. Confucius states, “What you do not wish for yourself, do not do to others.” Confucius also claimed that he enjoyed a special and privileged relationship with Heaven and that, by age fifty, he had come to understand what Heaven had mandated for him and for mankind (Riegel).
Confucius’ political philosophy is also rooted in his belief that a ruler should learn self-discipline, should govern his subjects by his own example, and should treat them with love and concern (Riegel). A quote from Confucius states, “If the people be led by laws, and uniformly among them be sought by punishments, they will not try to escape punishment and have no sense of shame. If they are led by virtue, and uniformly sought among them through the practice of ritual propriety, they will possess a sense of shame and come to you for their own accord.” Confucius also believed that the way to maintain and cultivate such...
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