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Hong Zicheng

1572 – 1620. A Chinese philosopher. The author of the Qingyang (literally “pure sayings”) aphorisms.



1. A noble man does not fall into despair when he gets trouble, nor does he withdraw from joy when coming to a feast. He never succumbs to the authority and is compassionate to the poor and orphaned.

2. You don't have to keep yourself clean in life. The dirt of any insult can be thrown off. In dealing with people, you don't have to be too pedantic. Good and evil, science and ignorance must be taken indifferently.

3. In the rays of the sunset sun, the skies shine particularly brightly. At the end of the year, the mandarin tree exudes a particularly strong scent. At the end of the life journey, in advanced years, the spirit of a noble man in a hundred times more perfect.

4. Don't be ahead of others in winning awards. Do not be behind others in good ventures. Do not get from others more than you are entitled to. In good ventures, do not do less than you can.

5. Having fully tasted the sweetness and bitterness of this world, you will hardly raise a brow whatever storm rages around. If you penetrate deep in one’s heart, you will nod your head in response even when called a bull or a horse.

6. When things serve us, we are indifferent to acquisitions, are not upset by failures and are always free in our souls. When we rather serve things, we are angry about mishaps, love to be pleased and are fettered from our feet to our heads.

7. Don't make hot-headed promises. Don't get angry when tipsy. Don't make your plans in joyful excitement. Don't think about the upcoming business when you are tired.

8. Heaven and Earth will remain forever, and my body will not be born for a second time. The lifetime of a human being hardly exceeds a hundred years, and my day will pass in an instant. Those lucky enough to live in this world have come to know the joy of having a life and be aware of the sadness of its evanescence.

9. You don't have to remember your services to others. You have to remember your misdeeds to others. You cannot forget about the mercifulness of others toward you. And you can't help but forget about the grievances you've suffered.

10. A single kind thought will bring about concord in all the world. A modicum of purity of the heart will keep fragrant for a hundred of centuries.