A learning opportunity

XTLC13

子曰:「三人行,必有我師焉:擇其善者而從之,其不善者而改之。」
Confucius said: “Let me take a stroll with any two random people, and I can always be sure of learning something from them. I can take their good points and emulate them; and I can take their bad points and correct them in myself.”

You can feel Confucius’s outgoing nature and zest for life in these famous words. To him, any situation he encounters is an opportunity to learn something and anybody he meets has something to teach him.

If only the worthies who built up the so-called Confucian education system had heeded these words more closely. There might have been much less rote learning and more open discussion in the curriculum.

We too could learn something from these words at a time where devices that help us to connect with each other more easily in virtual spaces can have the effect of keeping us further apart when we are in close physical proximity. When was the last time you put your mobile phone or tablet away and actually talked to the person you were sitting next to on the bus, train, or plane?

I know, I know. I’m as guilty as anyone of skulking behind my screen…

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