Stories from History: Not Holding Grudges against Others


PureInsight | October 15, 2006

[] Not holding
grudges against others but, instead, treating them kindly is a
classical Chinese virtue. That is to say we shouldn't pay attention to
others' faults or different opinions and shouldn't be critical of
others' shortcomings. Instead we should treat others kindly.
Disregarding others' faults is a noble virtue.


When Confucius arrived at the state of Wei in his journey around
different states, Duke Ling, the monarch of Wei, treated him with great
respect initially. He even personally greeted Confucius in person at
the outskirts of the capital. Confucius felt Duke Ling was a monarch
who respected sages, so he decided to stay in Wei.

One day Duke Ling went out of the palace. He and his consort rode in a
vehicle and let eunuchs sit with them. But he let Confucius ride in
another vehicle behind them. They swaggered around the town. Confucius
felt embarrassed and told his students, "I have never seen anyone else
who wants to appear to be virtuous behave so badly." By that time,
Confucius had stayed in Wei for a long time and hadn't been placed in a
significant position. Confucius thus left Wei.  

Later, when Wei had a coup de 'etat, Ranqiu, a student of Confucius,
asked Zigong, another student, "Will Master help Wei's monarch?" Zigong
answered: "I don't know either. But let me ask Master."

Zigong went into Confucius 's room and asked, "What kind of people were Boyi and Shuqi?" Confucius answered: "They were sages."

Zigong asked again, "Did they hold grudges?" Confucius answered: "They
sought humanity and therefore received humanity. How could they hold
any grudge?"

After the conversation, Zigong told Ranqiu, "It looks like Master will
help Wei. He does not harbor any resentment against the monarch of Wei."

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