Zigong Respected His Teacher
(Clearwisdom.net) After Confucius died, in the Deliberation Hall of Country Lu, Shusun Wushu said to all the high ranking officials, "Zigong is more virtuous than Zhongni (Confucius' pen name)." After Zigong heard this, he said, "Let me give you an example to show why this view is absurd. Let's use the wall to illustrate. The wall around my house is shoulder high. When people walk by the wall, they can see how good my house is. But the wall around my teacher's house is dozens of feet high, and one can barely find the front entrance of his home. So, few can see how good his house is and how rich he is. Teacher had commented before, "There are very few people who can enter my door." Teacher's words were very appropriate for this situation.
However, Shusun Wushu was still talking badly about Zhongni. Zigong heard about it and said, "He should not do such thing. Zhongni was a person that nobody could slander. All other virtuous persons are like mountain tops. Although they may be great, they could be surpassed. Zhongni is like the sun or the moon shining high above us; who can outshine him? Although people did not want to have anything to do with him, their
arrogant words could not touch the splendor of the sun or the moon, but only show their ignorance."
Chen Ziqin also said to Zigong, "Zigong, you do things so respectfully and prudently, how could Zhongni be compared with you?" Zigong reprimanded him, "A gentleman should not comment so casually. My teacher is unreachable, just like we cannot reach the sky with a ladder. If my teacher could have had his way, everyday people would have followed his principles to live their lives, and the king would have followed his principles to run a country. Teacher would have been very popular and welcome by people, and people's lives would have become prosperous and peaceful by following his guidance. His life was an honor and his death was a tragedy to the world. Who could be compared with this kind of saint?"
Zigong was an intelligent person with great debating abilities. After he came to the public, the situation of the six countries changed dramatically and he was respected by people of many countries. However, he was always able to stay humble.
Now, Master himself has taught us the universal principles. What we enlightened to from the Fa is just like a bowl of water we scoop up from the ocean of this enormous universe. Sometimes, it may reflect the beautiful mountains, the sun, and the moon, but let us never become so arrogant to allow the demonic interference from our own minds to cause us to walk the opposite way.