The Eight Virtues
(Clearwisdom.net) The Eight Virtues are the criteria that Confucius left for people to follow. The eight virtues are filial piety, respect for your brothers, loyalty, keeping promises, courtesy, justice, being non-corrupt, and shame. That is to say that when lacking the eight virtues or forgetting the eight virtues, a person cannot be regarded as a human being, because he has forgotten the standards of being a human. The first of the eight virtues is filial piety. Some people say that filial piety is the first of the hundred kind deeds, and indulgence is the first of the hundred evil deeds.
Let's talk about what is "being worse than a beast." A lamb kneels down to be nursed and a younger crow feeds the old crows. This is called "filial piety." A rooster crows at dawn and a wild goose flies to the north every spring and to the south every autumn. This is called "keeping promises." When a wild goose or a mallard duck loses its mate, it would never seek a new mate. This is called "loyalty." When a deer comes across good grass, it will call the entire group to share, and when an ant comes across food, it will gather the whole colony. This is called "justice." Please remember these four virtues, as even a beast is capable of maintaining this virtue. If a human being has no virtue at all, he is considered as "worse than a beast."