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When people made mistakes, their erroneous ways were clearly pointed out and explained, and also benevolence was used to transform them.  If there were arguments and competitions between people, the propriety of yielding is explained in order to resolve the conflict.  A paradigm for the aspiration of benevolence, righteousness, and the propriety of yielding was established to demonstrate to people the invariable virtues of the Way (benevolence, righteousness, propriety, wisdom, and trustworthiness). 



If anyone fails to abide by these codes, even a powerful ruler will be removed (impeached), regarded as the pest of society by the public.  This is the so called society of Small Tranquility.



(Venerable Master Chin Kung:  Such is the Reign of the Three Dynasties of Shia, Shang, and Zhou, which was the epoch of extreme prosperity and peace in Chinese History.)



Confucius said: “The rites are the rules of propriety for the ancient kings to retain the Way of Heaven, and to regulate the feelings of men. Therefore, he who neglects them may be regarded as dead, and he who observes them, as alive.”


Excerpted from A Compendium of Books on the Essentials of Governing, vol. 7, “Book of Rites, Operation of Rites.”



[Translation]  Confucius said: “The so called Rites are the rules of conduct for the ancient kings to retain the mandates of Heaven, and to regulate the feelings of men.  Therefore, he who neglects them will be annihilated, and he who observes them will survive.”



Lose it, the Way of Heaven is extinct, human desires flourish, how can one not die.

選自《禮記菁華錄》卷四 <禮運第九˙侯官吳曾祺評註>

Excerpted from The Essentials of the Book of Rites, vol. 4, “Operation of Rites, chapter 9, annotated by Official Lord Wu Zheng Chi.”



[Translation]   If the Rites (Rules of Propriety) are lost, the Way of Heaven will become extinct, the five cardinal virtues of benevolence, righteousness, propriety, wisdom, and trustworthiness will be lost; then, human desires will flourish. How can this not bring the evil karma (retribution) of the ruination of a family and the death of a person?



Donate properties, diminish misfortunes, and accumulate merits are the paramount thing in life.



[Translation] Give away property so as to practice charity; change mistaken ways so as to eliminate misfortunes; and cultivate virtues in order to accumulate merits are things of paramount importance in life.




Wherever the Buddha travels, whether to a country, a city, or a village, all the people will be transformed (by his teachings). All the worlds will be in peace and harmony. The sun and moon will shine clear and bright. Winds and rain will come as needed. Disasters and epidemics will not occur. Countries will flourish and people will enjoy peace.  Soldiers or weapons will not be deployed. Virtue will be revered and benevolence will be advocated. People will practice courtesy and humility. Countries will have no thieves or robbers. There will be neither injustice nor resentment. The strong will not oppress the weak. Everyone will be properly placed.


(Wherever the teachings of the Buddha are widely expounded and practiced, it is natural to harvest the abundant fruit of such realized effects.)



Excerpted from The Buddha speaks the Mahayana Sutra of the Immeasurable life of the Splendors of Purity, Equality, and Enlightenment.




[Translation] Wherever the teachings of the Buddha are widely expounded and practiced, whether in a large area such as a country, a city, or a small area such as a county or a village, all the people will accept the Buddha-Dharma and change for the better, their demeanors will be transformed, and all will know how to eradicate afflictions and cultivate virtues.  Hence, the world (and societies) will be enveloped in the ambience of peace and harmony, countries will have peaceful relationships, humans and things will be harmonious, all will be in accord with the celestial movements, and people will be friendly towards each other.


The sun and moon will orbit normally; the winds will be gentle and the rain will come when needed without abnormality.  Heaven is seasonal, earth is rich, people are in harmony; hence, there will be no natural disasters.  Countries will produce abundant goods.  People will live in prosperity; enjoy good health, the serenity of mind, free will, and bliss.  All will be properly placed and world peace attained, naturally there will be no men-made disasters of wars.


Rulers must educate people to observe propriety and to act with humility and the virtue of yielding.  To let every one, in a society, revere virtues and advocate benevolence and righteousness.  People will treat each other with loving-kindness.  Conduct daily activities in an orderly fashion and handle things with courtesy and submissiveness.  In this way, the public of any country will be law-abiding citizens.  Countries naturally would have no such crimes as theft and robbery, and public safety will naturally improve for the better.  Citizens will respect each other, regardless of their social status, or whether they are rich or poor.  The strong and powerful will not bully the weak or the minority.  People will treat each other with honesty and no one will be victimized or defrauded.   Everyone will live peaceful under safe conditions and be happily employed.


Mahayana buddhist cultivates the causations for purity, equality, and enlightenment; hence accomplishes the fruition of wisdom, infinite life, and resplendence.


[Translation]  Mahayana Buddhist cultivates the unparallel causal conducts of purity, equality, and enlightenment; hence will be able to attain the supreme fruition of wisdom, infinite life, and resplendence.



Prudent in speech and circumspect in deeds, the wise and knowledgeable can protect his person.


[Translation]  Be careful and prudent in your speech and deeds.  A wise person is insightful about worldly matters and will not participate in anything that will put him in a dangerous position.



The less one knows the less one worries; the more people one meets, the more trouble one has (gossip one hears).



[Translation] When a person knows fewer matters, he will have less worry and anxiety; when a person knows many people, there will be more rights and wrongs.



Sima Guang said: “Gentlemen embrace silence in order to avoid the calamity caused by vile persons.”


Quoated from Zizhi Tongjian, vol. 48, “Chronicle of Han ch. 48, Emperor Lin of Han Dynasty, Year 2 of Genlin.



[Translation]  Sima Guang said: “Gentlemen embrace silence and will not speak a word, or give any opinions, in order to avoid the entrapment and ruination of vile persons.”



Fan Chunren said: “I caution you to speak little (Don’t be talkative); a talkative person may easily offend people’s sensitivities.  Careless speech sprouts calamity.”


Quoted from Poem to Caution Son and Nephew, Fan Zi (Duke of Lu) of the Song Dynasty.


[Translation]  Fan Chunren said: “Be prudent and speak little, a talkative person may easily hit a nerve and offend someone.  Careless with words may well be the inception of disasters.”

(Andi’s note: ·繫辞上》言行,君子之枢机。后因以枢机喻言语。)



Confucius spoke humbly when conversing with vile persons to avoid calamity.


Quotes from Aphorisms for Youths to Aspire (Ascend) to Virtues, compiled by Ting Fubo



[Translation]  When Confucius had a conversation with vile persons, he would use words of respect and humility to prevent ruination (disasters).


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