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About friendship

January 21, 2010

Teacher of teachers

Was reading someone’s question in a forum regarding friendship. Mainly what kind of friends we should have and the type of association we should have with our friends. This triggered my thoughts to Confucius, the Chinese sage.  Recently there were some  situations and conversation topics which came up revolving the Master. It seems not many people of this generation here ( im referring to Singapore)  know much about him, although our culture is actually seeped in Confucian values. It doesn’t help that his texts are in old chinese which not many people understand. We can only rely on translations and commentaries by scholars and that is quite boring. Furthermore most people now only read in English and meanings do get lost in translations. There was a series of talks given on CCTV station in China by professor Yu Dan on Confucius and Zhuang Zi(a taoist sage) and they were aired here last year. Prof Yu Dan’s commentaries come across as fresh, relevant and interesting, a really nice take on an ancient topic. Maybe it helps that she is a female with sensitivity and intuition. (my feeling) At this dawn of the feminine age, feminine approaches and viewpoints are starting to shine through and gain recognition. (again my feeling)

Confucius taught about the ideal conduct that we should have in different aspects of our interaction with the outside society. It really gives us the common people a path to follow in regards on how to conduct ourselves. On friendship, Confucius has described in details the attributes of the good and the bad friend and the benefits and consequences of having such friends.  In short the type of friends we have is a reflection of who we are and it is best to choose wisely our friends as they influence the lifestyle that we lead. The choosing itself of friends should first start within by first learning to understand our own inner self.

Just heard that the Confucius movie will be released in cinemas soon.

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