Abide by Tao, Promote Kindness, Use Virtue to Administer the Country Well
(Clearwisdom.net) Our forefathers believed that "Tao" generated everything and endowed everything with virtue (De). They respected Tao, valued virtue, and promoted abiding by the heavenly law with virtue and running the country with virtue. In Chinese history, there were several famous governing parties, including the Wen and Jing administrations. Wen and Jing were emperors during the Han Dynasty. Their administrations promoted kindness, and they governed the country with virtue. This government kept a peaceful and orderly world. This society was prosperous, and its citizens lived happy and peaceful lives.
Administrating with fair policies that comfort and nurture the country's
At the beginning of the Xihan Dynasty, due to years of turmoil and war at the end of the Qin Dynasty, the economy was impoverished. According to historical archives: "the farmers were not able to farm, and starvation was everywhere." When Emperor Wen took the throne, he sent out many imperial edicts promoting farming and reducing, or even eliminating, taxes on farmers. He imposed policies to eliminate unfair punishment of third parties who were involved or implicated in criminal cases and pacified surrounding minorities by aiding and comforting them. Emperor Jing inherited the policies of his father, Emperor Wen. He also sent out an imperial edict, stating, "Farming is the important base for all else. With regard to gold, silver, and jade jewelery, you cannot eat them if you are hungry or wear them if you are cold. They cannot compare with grains, corn, silk, and linen." Emperor Jing also established schools on a large scale and taught etiquette, while instilling virtue and morality. The citizens were simple, honest, and advocated virtue.
Initiating a policy of thrift
Emperor Wen was famous for thriftiness and self restraint. He thought, "The administrators need to govern the country and abide by the heavenly law, treat the citizens as they would their own, practice careful saving, and forbid squandering, while making certain not to disturb or harm the citizens. During the twenty-three years he was in power, there were no additions to his palace, garden, clothes, or other personal property. In order to lessen the taxes, he decreased his expenditures by downsizing the imperial bodyguards and moderating the country's financial expenditures. It was recorded in Shiji. Lushu that Wen Emperor said, "The citizens lived peacefully without invasion from outside or excessive taxation from within. They were able to farm and live prosperous lives." Jing sent out an imperial edict forbidding subordinates from bringing brocade and luxury items as contributions. He also forbade local officials from purchasing gold, silver, jade, or jewels. Anyone who did would be charged with theft. This way, the aristocrats and officials did not dare to engage in extortion or indulge in luxury. A citizen's income was guaranteed, and his burden was thereby lessened. The drifters settled down, and the population grew. In turn, national power showed an overall increase.
Practice moral teachings while administrating the country well
Emperor Wen modeled himself on ancient sages and the virtues: Be modest and strict with oneself, welcome different opinions. He was always conscience-stricken and afraid to make any mistakes. Whenever there was a poor harvest or a disaster, he would examine himself first and then ask his officials and citizens to point out the problems that existed in society. For example, in one imperial edict, Yizuobaixing, he stated, "For several years the crop yield has been poor, plus disasters such as floods and droughts brought about epidemic illnesses. I am very concerned. Are there any policy mistakes within my administration? Was there anything there that disrupted the harmony among us, which may have disturbed the balance between heaven and earth? Did my officials do too many unnecessary things? Or was their salary excessive? Why was there a grain shortage? Whoever has good ideas to share, please take the initiative and bring them forward." Once there was a disturbance at the board. Wen again blamed himself for the disruption. We admire his spirit of self restraint..
Emperor Jing placed an importance on setting a good example with his own conduct. He stated in one of his imperial edicts, "I plowed the field myself, the Queen plants white mulberry trees and raises mulberry-eating silkworms. We offer grains and and clothes at ceremony time, while we worship heaven and earth in religious ceremonies. We hope the citizens can also be diligent in farming and raising silkworms, while saving for rainy days. Do not bully or abuse those who are weak and less fortunate. Take care of children, orphans, and elders. This year we have a crop failure, and we still have floods and droughts. What is the problem? Are there any fraudulent or hypocritical officials in my administration who are using their power to do bad deeds or trading business with property and hurting people? If that is the case, then it is no longer meaningful to be an official in this administration. I want all the officials in the Erqianshi area to be strict with themselves and to report to me those who are not faithfully discharging their duties. I will investigate their crimes. I will make public this special notice so everyone will know what I mean."
Both Wen and Jing abided by the Tao and followed the course of nature. The concept of governing the country was: "Love, enrichment, and teaching your citizens." They sought out able and virtuous men to be the officials in their administrations. When there was a poor crop, they blamed themselves first. Under their influence, the people all around put an emphasis on the importance of virtue. According to Hanshu. Shihuozhi, after Wen and Jing, the citizens had plenty to live on, and the warehouses and storage areas were full of grain. Every year there was a budget surplus. People lived in a peaceful and orderly world.
Chinese citizens have believed in following the law of heaven since ancient times. Over the course of history, these benevolent leaders emphasized honor and justice, while encouraging different opinions, and they have aided and comforted citizens in times of need. People observed discipline, obeyed the law, and lived peaceful lives. The Chinese Communist Party, the current administration, has destroyed the traditional culture, virtue, and righteous beliefs, while using its "Deceive, Do Evil, and Fight" Party theme to replace traditional Chinese culture. Persecution and oppression are the order of the day for those who hold a different opinion. This has caused a massive decline in moral standards. It is inevitable that "heaven will eliminate the CCP."