Confucian School - English Introduction

Confucian School - English Introduction


Larry Neal Gowdy

Copyright ©2021 December 21, 2021

Confucian School Introduction

The goal is to help individuals help themselves, to help individuals self-learn how to make choices that benefit themselves throughout life.

Many individuals reach adulthood and then feel regret for their mistakes of when young. The regret is permanent throughout the remainder of their lives, and the negative emotional impact of the regret causes a stunting of the individual's intelligence, happiness, and health. One of the regrets may be that the individual was never told of which choices would be right or wrong, and far worse is that never had anyone intricately explained to the individual why the choices are right or wrong. In no known era of mankind has any source anywhere in the world explained why choices are right or wrong.

The purpose of this Confucian School series is to present explanations of why choices are right or wrong. The reason of naming the series Confucian School is because Confucius (and a few others of the Confucian era) spoke of many good ideas that are worthy of contemplation. Confucius rarely spoke of anything new, but the high value of his sayings is in the clarity of how he phrased his words. Within the topic of right and wrong choices, the Confucian quotes are amongst the world's best examples to be given detailed explanations.

Human development progresses in distinct Nature-dictated phases. No human-made law, and no self-made choice, can escape nor side-step Nature-dictated phases. Also, everyone is different, and everyone's phases of development will be of different intensities and durations of time, but there does exist a general rhythm of learning and maturing from one phase to the other. The development rhythm is interpreted to be approximately 7 years long, plus with half-cycles of about 3.5 years along with the ratios that mark ascending and descending ratios. Terrible 2s, fearsome 5s, the rebellious teenage years of 13-16 when the urges arise to marry and to move away, the settling-down age of 18-21, the search for meaning in life at 28-30, the '50-year-old crazies' at near 49-50 when life-changes are made, the solidifying of one's values at near 60, and the living one's values by around 70 years old.

Confucius spoke of similar:

'Zi [Confucius] say: My decade have five [15 years old] and aspiration to learn, thirty and stand(found/live), forty and not confused, fifty and know heaven fate, sixty and ear listen(humble), seventy and follow heart place desire not jump-over square(rules).' (word-per-word draft translation of 為政 Wei Zheng #4)

If an individual first knows that each phase of life will hold different strengths of personal values, then in the present phase the individual can make better choices that harmonize with and enhance the future phases. Similar to strengthening muscles by lifting weights, when an individual is permitted to self-analyze when young, then the self-analyses strengthen the mind, and enable the mind to be capable of analyzing better when older. Like baking bread, all things in Nature are built upon specific ingredients and specific sequences within specific cycles, including the mind. If an individual wishes to be intelligent, healthy, and happy when old, then the individual must exercise the mind when young.

Also, each personal ideal is based upon one's own life experiences within one's own culture. Ideals that may have been useful within a culture thousands of years ago, may not be useful today. The ~500 B.C. culture that Confucius lived in was much different than today's, and many aspects of Confucius' culture would not be acceptable today. Among the unacceptable choices within Confucius' era were classifications of people: royalty, nobility, common people, and slaves. The classifications still exist today in all cultures, except for the names to have been changed: government employees, billionaires, and citizens. A high value of Confucius' sayings is that they help to point at proper and creative behavior regardless of one's occupation, wealth, and social status: to only give respect to people who have earned respect.

Within modern terms, it might be said that the underlying ideas of Confucius' were as if an early science of the mind and personality. Technically, Confucius did not teach a religion nor a philosophy. Religions speak of the rules of gods', and philosophies invent imaginary rules that do not agree with the laws of Nature. The favored quotes of Confucius' point to what is real in Nature, the real laws of Nature that everyone follows regardless of whether they want to or not.

'Heaven fate, it call nature.

Ratio nature it call way.

Create way it call to-learn-by.

Way, person not able should a-moment leave.

Able leave, not way.'

(word-per-word draft translation of 中庸 Zhong Yong - Middle Use #1 (aka Doctrine of the Mean))

As mentioned on the Confucian Website page, "Confucianism often speaks of how an individual is bettered through good behaviors". In Nature, the ultimate value is creativity. Without creativity, Creation would not exist. Creativity requires the ingredient of harmony. When an individual is of harmony with self, then the individual is able to self-create self-improvement. When a people are first of harmony with themselves, then that people are able to begin becoming of harmony with other people, and if the people achieve harmony, then they will be able to self-create an improved society.

If an individual wishes to live in a harmonious society, then the individual must first become of harmony with himself.

'Great learning, it way involved-in bright-clear-understanding.

Bright-clear-understanding goodness involved-in do-oneself.

People involved-in stop, compare, reach good understanding.

Stop and after have decide-order.

Decide-order and after ability quiet-gentle.

Quiet-gentle and after ability calm-contentment.

Calm-contentment and after ability calm-contentment ponder.

Then after ability, obtain thing have source-root final-last-end.

Pursue have finish-end.

Begin-only-then recognize place before behind.

Then near-intimate way.'

(word-per-word draft translation of 大學 Da Xue - Great Learning #1)

The old Chinese writings did not speak of new things, but the writings did speak clearly of accurate logic. The statement 'Calm-contentment and after ability calm-contentment ponder' is accurate: only when an individual is of self-harmony, will he then be inwardly calm, and he will then be able to ponder and to rationalize accurately, which instills greater depths of self-harmony.

'Therefore not ascend high mountain, not know-understand heaven it high.

Not descend deep gorge, not know-understand earth it thick-substantial.'

(word-per-word draft translation of Xunzi's 勸學 Encourage Learning #2)

Firsthand experience is the only worthy learning. Nature is the only worthy source to learn from.

The teacher is one's self, and the schoolroom is Nature.

Therefore, the Confucian School series points at what is real in the real world of Nature, while lending descriptions of why good choices in life are always in agreement with Nature's way.

Confucian School - Introduction

Confucian School #2 - Choose Who You Will Become

Confucian School #3 - Focus on the Goal

Confucian School #4 - Calm Center Wise

Additional pages will be listed at Confucian School.