September 28, 551 BC: traditional birthday of Chinese teacher Confucius
Though Confucius has been dead for several millennia, people still throw him elaborate birthday parties every September 28 in various Asian countries. Confuscius and his philosophies first began their rise to fame during the 6th century B.C., when old Chinese traditions were starting to fall by the wayside. Confucius decided maybe he would take the opportunity to give Chinese culture a bit of an overhaul. Here you’ll find out more about the Chinese teacher and philosopher and why tons of people still dig him today.
Follow that Golden Rule
Believe it or not, Jesus wasn’t the first to come up with the Golden Rule. Creepily enough, every major religious tradition in the world has some version of it, which is probably the most solid piece of evidence that it’s a good idea. Confucius’ version went, “What you do not wish for yourself, do not do to others.”
The Golden rule pretty much formed the cornerstone of Confucian tradition. His philosophies were built on the idea of “ren” or love for others, as well as self-discipline.
Confucius’ thoughts on politics
Confucius insisted that politicians did not get a free pass on self-discipline just because they happened to be loftier than everyone else. Instead, he advised politicians to conduct themselves with humility and lead by example.
As he saw it, a leader had a way better chance of getting people to follow the law by embracing virtue and unification than simply by being a hardass.
As for education
When it came to education, Confucius said it was all about the “six arts” of archery, calligraphy, computation, music, chariot-driving, and ritual. He maintained that the most important things any teacher could pass down where benevolence, propriety, and ritual.
If you want to check out more of Confucius’ many thoughts and teachings, you can read all about them in The Analects of Confucius. Not only is he widely regarded as one of the most influential people in Chinese history, but many of his philosophies are still embraced to this day by multiple Asian cultures.