The Advice of Master Kong
Enjoy Life by Not Working
Enjoy Life by Not Working
We, in the West, have a great fascination with Confucius, which in Mandarin means Master Kong. Confucius lived in China 2500 years ago and attempted to help his fellow Chinese to live in harmony with each other and the world. An example of this is a story that I have mentioned many times. A disciple asked Confucius,"有一言而可以終身行之者乎？子曰： 其恕乎！己所不欲、勿施於人," which means "Is there any one word that could guide a person throughout life?" Confucius responded, "How about reciprocity! Never impose on others what you would not choose for yourself." I do not know whether Master Kong's follower adhered to that truth or not. However, most of us haven't.
Many of the other sayings of Confucius were compiled into the Analects. Interestingly, the word, Analects, means in Chinese edited conversations. That is essentially what they were. Various editors compiled the conversations that Confucius had with his disciples and bound them together in one single manuscript.
Many of the Edited Conversations of Confucius deal with ethics and morality whether on a personal or a societal level. Additionally, some are purely personal statements so as his followers could enjoy that time that they have here on Earth.
At 73 years of age and having danced with death a couple of times, one of the conversations of Master Kong, I truly understand. "If you enjoy what you do, you'll never work another day in your life." Aside from loving and caring for my children and grandchildren, what I enjoy doing in life is threefold: travelling, writing, and teaching. Society Security issued me a Medicare card a half dozen years ago and a monthly Social Security check. However, retirement isn't a real option for me. If I retired from teaching, which provides additional income, what would I do as a retiree? I'd love and care for my children and grandchildren. I would continue travelling, writing, and teaching. Duh. Jack and Owen, are preschoolers and are two of my best students. They can identify dozens of famous paintings from around the world along with fossils from their collection from a time long gone by.
One of my goals in life is to outlive George Burns who was born on January 20, which is the same day that I was born. He lived to March 9th of his 100th year, which means that I have 27 years and 49 days to reach my long held goal. In addition, I plan to do a show at the Palladium in London on January 20, 2043, which was one of George Burns' dreams on his 100th. I still have that dream.
Thanks to Confucius, I look forward every morning to doing what I enjoy doing. One other thing that I do but with mixed feelings. That is working out for 45 minutes every day and doing 600 crunches. However, that work will allow me not to work. You and I need to remember what Master Kong said 2500 years ago, "If you enjoy what you do, you'll never work another day in your life."
Visit the The Last Lecture page to read more about this topic.
Visit the Dancing with Death page to read more about this topic.
Visit the Confucius Said page to read more about this topic.