孔夫子 Kong Fuzi’s lasting legacy in not only Chinese but global culture is his deep commitment to civil society.

Whilst his ideas about the correct relations between mothers and children, emperors and subjects, fathers and sons, certainly date the time he lived in, the underlying concept of social cohesion based on individual respect and social harmony is as important today as it was 2500 years ago.

It’s easy to dismiss Confucian thought as a dated legacy of a bygone era. It’s much harder to search for eternal truths masked by prevailing attitudes during the time he lived.

Sure, his concept of filial piety echoed with patriarchal attitudes. But let’s consider the time – 500 years BC. England at the time was populated by tribal groups ruled by chieftains, often at war with each other – the Iron Age.

Wikipedia has a list of philosophers alive at a similar time – but I don’t recognize many of them, do you? Plato came almost a hundred years after Confucius and Aristotle, another hundred years again.

Confucius’ most famous book, the Analects, was not actually written by the Master. Instead, it is a collection of his teachings, recalled by his disciple Mengzi, Mencius.


Confucius was asked, if there is one word that was important in guiding one’s life.

His answer…..


Reciprocity and the “Golden Rule

Zigong asked, “Is there one word that one can act upon throughout the course of one’s life?”  The Master said, “Reciprocity (shu)—what you would not want for yourself, do not do to others.” [15:23]



Author: Debbie

immersed in the ancient culture of china, and its constantly changing facades.... a traveller through time and space landing in suzhou of the 21st century.... australian by birth, traveller by nature, mother of a beautiful ten-year-old

5 thoughts on “Reciprocity”

  1. Buen día querida Mabel, siempre pendiente de cada detalle. Dios te bendiga por continuar día a día reoaÃl¡ndgnos lo mejor de ti como profesional y tu sensibilidad humana que va mas allá de lo saberes y conocimiento que como seres humanos poseemos. Lamentable el deceso de Prof. Felix, según lo que he leído fue un profesional con vocación y compromiso que ha dejado una importante huella en su andar por esta vida que Dios le permitió desarrollara con mucha sabiduría y certeza de que lo haría según su voluntad. Paz a sus resto!!


    1. Hola Cayden, Mabel no esta aqui -este no esta la blog de Mabel…. pero hablas la verdad: podemas encontrar la sensibilidad humana en cada cultura.

      gracias por visitar mi blog.



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