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Chapter X The Filial Duty Of A Son, The Book Of Filial Duty

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The Book of Filial Duty, by Ivan Chen, [1908] THE FILIAL DUTY OF A SON Confucius said: "A filial son has five duties to perform to his parents: (1) He must venerate them in daily life. (2) He must try to make them happy in every possible way, especially when the meal is served. (3) He must take extra care of them when they are sick. (4) He ought to show great sorrow for them when they are dead. (5) He must offer sacrifices to his deceased parents with the utmost solemnity. If he fulfils these duties, then he can be considered as having done what ought to be done by a son." A son ought not to feel proud of the high position he occupies, ought not to show dissatisfaction with his inferior position to that of others, and ought not to act against the natural feeling of the public. If he is proud and haughty when he is a high official, he will soon bring ruin upon himself and his family; if he feels dissatisfied with his lower position, he may be led to do illegal acts; and if he does anything contrary to the public feeling, he will probably be the object of attacks. Having thus wronged himself, he cannot be considered as a filial son, although he treats his parents every day to luxurious meals.

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1 Sara Di Diego = "This passage is taken from Cf. Analecrs 2.7.Work Cited:http://www.chinapage.com/confucius/xiaojing-be.html"