Discussion » Chinese Language & Culture » Filial Virtue 孝敬父母

  • MY Chinese Study
    MY Chinese Study wrote:
    <p>Respecting and taking care of the aged parents is regarded as an obligatory duty in China. Chinese people believe that only those who are concerned with and practise filial devotion to their parents would be honest, faithful, and be grateful to others and seek ways to return their kindness. There are many stories which show the filial respect in ancient China. ”Taste Liquid Medicine for Mother” and “Stealing Oranges to Take Home for His Mother”, are the most famous two of them. <img src="http://img.dl.e.weliveinchina.com/_outimages/98617B60A1C9077E2C1D2F46170B5F06/536/WMDEditor/2/2012/5/8/536_100020120508161003912907-2.png" alt="alt text" /></p> <p>The story of “Taste Liquid Medicine for Mother” tells us the filial virtue of Han Wendi (Emperor Wen of the Western Han Dynasty). His mother had been sick for three years. He often stayed up by her bedside and nursed her day and night. He tasted the liquid medicine first before giving to her. (Chinese people take herbal medicine prescribed by Chinese doctors. Herbs are boiled with water to make a liquid medicine. Before giving such medicine to his mother, Han Wendi first tasted it to ensure it was not too hot or too bitter.) Han Wendi was on throne for 24 years. He governed the country with morals, advocated rites and etiquette, and paid great attention to agricultural development. As a result, the Western Han became a stable and prosperous society. The economy was resumed and developed. This period is known as the ”Peace and Prosperity During the Reign of Emperors Wen and Jing” in history.</p> <p>Stealing Oranges to Take Home for His Mother” is a story of the Three-Kingdom period. A young boy named Lu Ji of only six years old traveled with his father Lu Kang to visit Yuan Shu in Jiujiang. Yuan Shu served them with oranges. Lu Ji secretly put two oranges in the sleeve of his robe. When he was leaving, unexpectedly, the two oranges came rolling out and fell to the ground. Yuan Shu saw the oranges and laughed, ”Little Brother, you’re my guest today. How come you steal your host’s oranges?” Lu Ji r e p l i e d , “Pardon me, my mother likes oranges very much. Today I enjoyed these ripe, sweet oranges, and I could not help taking a few of them back for Mother.” Yuan Shu was impressed by the six-year-old’s concern for his mother. Though there are some parts of imagination in these stories, Chinese people are deeply influenced and transformed by these models of filial virtue.</p>

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