Today I Learn… I make a point of learning something new everyday. This is what I learn each day

1, Apr 4, 2011

Confucius on Filial Piety

Filed under: China — admin @ 12:06 am


On 3/23/2011, when I talked to my mother over Skype, I asked her what she was doing. She told me she was reading newspaper on Confucian filial piety. “What did he say?” I asked.

Next she explained to me Confucius’ own words which is shaded in blue. Here’s the translation.

Ziyou asked Confucius what filial piety meant. Confucius answered, “Nowadays people understand piety piety as being able to support the parents. You can keep alive dog and horse. Yet, without a loving heart, what is the difference between keeping dog/horse and keeping parents?”

Zixia asked Confucius the same question. He answered, “It is difficult to attend to your parents’ need with a smile on your face.” That is, filial piety means you cannot serve your parents with a nasty attitude or trying to make your parents feel misery by throwing at them dirty looks, as if you were serving prison sentence instead of fulfilling your filial duties.

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