Leadership Lessons from Confucius Project: week 7, 2021 updates

quotations from Confucius

A mixed bag this week, including collections of quotations from Confucius on Confucius, leadership, and the supreme virtue of goodness (仁/rén). I am hoping that you will find them useful whenever you need to find an appropriate quote from the sage for an essay or a presentation.

Analects Book 9: Confucius on Confucius
Analects of Confucius Book 7: Confucius on himself
Analects of Confucius Book 13: ten quotes on leadership from Confucius
Analects Books 1 – 5: nine quotes on goodness from Confucius

Many of the quotations from Confucius in Book 7 and Book 9 give us a vivid picture of his insatiable passion for both learning and teaching. I particularly like the enthusiasm he shows in 7.21 and 7.7 below. In both deed and word, he was a very strong advocate of education for all. This is a vision that we still have not accomplished over two millennia later, though thanks to the great progress that’s been made globally over the past fifty years we are getting much closer to achieving it.

“Let me take a stroll with any two 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.”

“I have never refused to teach anyone who has asked me to, even if they were too poor to offer no more than a token offering of a bundle of dried meat for their tuition.”

If you’re interested in learning more about the other figures who appear in Book 13, you should check out the following two articles I posted earlier in the week. In the course of writing these two pieces, I also made some extensive updates to the profiles of Duke Chu of Wei, Duke Ding of Lu, and the Lord of She.

Analects of Confucius Book 13: followers
Analects of Confucius Book 13: supporting cast

Look out for more collections of quotes this week on goodness and  ritual. I suspect it will be a while before I move on to Book 15.

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