Traditional Chinese Culture: A Forgiving Man Is Blessed with a Talented Son

PureInsight | October 3, 2005

[] Luo Xun (羅循), also known as Luo Junshan (Junshan means "follow kindness"), was a man from Jishui, Jiangxi Province in the Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644 A.D.) Luo Xun stayed at an inn when he took a provincial civil service examination. One of his outfits got stolen in the inn. Luo Xun's roommates felt bad. They searched around and found the man who stole Luo Xun's clothes. Some other candidates attending the exam and Luo Xun's roommate asked Luo Xun to confront the thief in his room.

As soon as Luo Xun's friends sat down in the thief's room, they went for the thief's luggage. They took out and showed Luo Xun the clothes inside. Luo Xun quickly left the room and told the thief apologetically, "It is not unusual that two men have the same outfit. My roommates must be drunk to make such a foolish accusation!"

After Luo Xun returned to his room, he told his roommates, "It is nothing for me to lose an inexpensive outfit. If I damage this man's reputation, how will he ever be able to make friends among learned men?!"

In that provincial civil service examination, Luo Xun landed in first place. Later he became a very high-level government official.

Luo Xun still hadn't been able to have a son when he entered his 40's. One day when he was on a trip in his official capacity, he stopped by a Buddhist monastery. He saw seven coffins that were left in the monastery because the deceased's families could not afford to buy cemetery plots. He used his salary to buy plots for them and asked the monks to complete the burial. That night he dreamed of an immortal telling him that he would be given a child. Later his wife indeed gave birth to a son named Luo Hongxian. Luo Xun gave his son a nickname Nian'an, which means, "think kind thoughts" in Chinese. In the eighth year of Jiajing Period (1521 – 1566 A.D.) under Emperor Sudi's reign, Luo Nian'an won first place in the imperial civil service examination. Luo Nian'an later became a famous scholar in a school devoted to studying the classics with a rational approach.

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