It seems the rolls have reversed.
Today, it is as if older people are to be invisible and silent while handing over everything they worked hard for to youngsters that expect to do or get whatever they want. In North America, we have spawned more than one generation of narcissists.
There are other countries where children are still taught to be respectful of their elders and value the work it takes to gain an education. China is one of those countries.
More than twenty-four hundred years ago, Confucius dedicated his life to the moral training of his culture. He lived during the Warring States period before China was unified. Living with all of that violence and death, he dreamed of a land where people could live happily and harmoniously together.
Only in this sense can one understand the tremendous emphasis placed on filial piety, which is regarded as the ‘first of all virtues’.
To learn more about Confucius and piety, check out this site at the Journal for International Relations. I’m not saying what Confucius taught was perfect but it served China well for centuries and still play a vital part of the culture in China.
Go to The First of All Virtues Part 7 or return to Part 5
Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.
Subscribe to “iLook China”
Sign up for an E-mail Subscription at the top of this page.