When I heard about the Analects of Confucius I felt a strong urge to read them. Unexplainable, I felt there was a secret connection of me with that book. I knew that I was going to like it, before I had read it; like being in love with someone I had not even met before. So, I bought it and I read it.
…Well, I found it boring. Even from the beginning of the book I had to reluctantly admit to myself that that was going to be another unfinished book. I kept reading it, however. At some parts I was repelled by Confucius conservatism, and what I found to be an obsession with hierarchy and immobility in family and society. At other parts, I just found his words incomprehensible and funny just as of Monty Python’s characters.
But when some time after having finished it the negative sensation had weakened, the feeling of this secret connection was still there. Like, as I said, being in love, I forgot every negative aspect and I was ready to read it again. (By the way, I believe that when our instinct pushes us to do even the most irrational things, contrary to common sense -e.g. when we are in love-, it still carries a logic and a wisdom that is not apparent and perhaps by no means accessible to the rational judgment).
To cut a long story short, I have read this book three times and I still go back to it when I need a piece of advice. What it seemed as conventionalism it is now perceived by me as true love for values such as peace, life experience and family; and what it seemed to be funny and incomprehensible it now looks just simpler than I had even expected.
(All the above was just some random thoughts while posting three of my favourite Confucius quotes. I hope you share my likeness).
“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”.
“By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest”.
“He who exercises government by means of his virtue may be compared to the north polar star, which keeps its place and all the stars turn towards it”.