“Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance.” Confucius
I am especially interested in Confucius, as I come from a Chinese background, and in the Chinese culture, Confucius is a saint. He is the saint, and if anyone just says saint without specifications, they most likely are referring to him. Although I have been influenced by him so much, I know very little about him. Everything I have heard is either stories or legends and so I decided that I would wish to research about him for myself.
Two qualities that I share with Confucius is that we are both persistent and enduring. He encountered countless obstacles on his journey, and I have never been afraid to express and defend my opinion. A common interest that we have is that we are both passionate about learning. He is literally the saint of learning and knowledge, and I have always seen learning as an important part of life and have always been willing to take in new knowledge.
Confucius exemplifies my goals in Talons in many ways. I first joined talons because I believed that “it would be more worthwhile to travel ten thousand miles than it is to read that many pages”.
I have several barriers with Confucius, one of the most outstanding ones is that we are in completely different eras. He lived about 2500 years ago, so it would be extremely difficult to understand his life fro a modern point of view. One way I can overcome the first problem is that next time I go back to China, I should plan to tour several museums or sites related to that period. This way, I can hopefully gain a better understanding of how people back then lived.
Confucius contributed to his field positively and tangibly, as he redirected the Chinese culture in such a significant way, that he essentially created the new culture. Even now, more than 2500 years since his death, most Chinese people still regard him as the saint of knowledge. He had many siblings, so his parents weren’t able to pay for his education. Most children under this situation would have just given up school and spent their entire lives as an average farmer, but Confucius was determined to go to school and worked day and night to pay for his school fees. After he became famous, he had many chances to just settle down and make a fortune teaching the children of kings and nobles, but he chose to keep travelling and educating. This shows that his greatest want is for everyone to be able to be educated, and his greatest fear is that people with talents might be wasted if they can’t afford to go to school to get an education.
Next, I will be researching more about Confucius’ quotes and writings. If possible, I aim to be able to read and finish his most famous book, “Zho Zhuan” in both English and traditional Chinese in a month.