The Analects (Penguin Classics)

The Analects - Confucius, D.C. Lau This was hard work in places! The Analects themselves probably could do with studying in detail and interpreting rather than just reading for interest – they are a bit, well, philosophical. Fortunately Lau gives us the gist of the Analects in the introduction. The basic upshot of Confucius is the ‘Golden Rule’ common to most belief systems, but unlike the religions of the West and Near-East there is no reward in heaven for ones good deeds, no punishment for bad – it is simply that one should endeavour to be moral, the reward is the journey itself not the destination. I found this to be a most enlightened viewpoint. After the Analects there are three appendices, Appendix one discusses the chronology of Confucious’ life, Appendix two the lives of his disciples and the third appendix the history on the Lun Yü itself. These are a bit dry and academic.

Interesting ideas of Chinese philosophy to ponder on.