Mozi or Mo-tze, Mocius or Mo-tzu, original name Mo Di, aka Master Mo

Mozi or Mo-tze, Mocius or Mo-tzu, original name Mo Di, aka Master Mo
c. 470 B.C.
c. 391 B.C.

Chinese Philosopher, founder of Mohist School, moral teachings emphasized self-reflection and authenticity rather than obedience to ritual in contrast to Confucius. He observed that we often learn about the world through adversity

Author Quotes

If I do what Heaven desires, then Heaven will do what I desire.

Now, as to universal love and mutual aid, they are beneficial and easy beyond a doubt. It seems to me that the only trouble is that there is no superior who encourages it. If there is a superior who encourages it, promoting it with rewards and commendations, threatening its reverse with punishments, I feel people will tend toward universal love and mutual aid like fire tending upward and water downwards ? it will be unpreventable in the world.

To enter upon rulership of a country but not preserve its scholars will result in the downfall of the country. To see the worthy but not hasten to them will make the country's ruler less able to perform his duties. To the unworthy is due no attention. The ignorant should remain without inclusion in the state's affairs. To impede the virtuous and neglect the scholarly and still maintain the survival of the state has yet to be, indeed.

If one does not preserve the learned in a state he will be injuring the state; if one is not zealous (to recommend) the virtuous upon seeing one, he will be neglecting the ruler. Enthusiasm is to be shown only to the virtuous, and plans for the country are only to be shared with the learned. Few are those, who, neglecting the virtuous and slighting the learned, could still maintain the existence of their countries.

One of the cause of distress to a state is when those who are trusted are not loyal, and those who are loyal are not trusted.

To promote what is beneficial to the world and to eliminate what is harmful.

If people regarded other people?s states as in the same way that they regard their own, who then would incite their own state to attack that of another? For one would do for others as one would do for oneself.

Poverty is the root of disorders in the country.

Universal love and no fighting.

If the rulers sincerely desire the empire to be wealthy and dislike to have it poor, desire to have it orderly and dislike to have it chaotic, they should bring about universal love and mutual aid. This is the way of the sage-kings and the way to order for the world, and it should not be neglected.

Prince Wen of Lu Yang said to Mo Tzu, ?Suppose someone is recommended as a loyal minister, and he bows when I allow him to bow down and bends back when I allow him to bend back, and he stays silent when let alone and answers when called. Can this be considered loyalty?? Mo Tzu said, ?Bowing when allowed and bending back when allowed?this is a mere shadow. Staying silent when not called for and answering when called?this is a mere echo. What benefit would you obtain from an echo or a shadow? ?Here is my idea of a loyal minister: He waits and warns when the superior is at fault, he tells the superior about his good ideas without revealing them to the world, he corrects irregularities and leads in goodness, and he identifies himself with the superior and does not ally himself with subordinates.

Universal love is really the way of the sage-kings. It is what gives peace to the rulers and sustenance to the people. The gentleman would do well to understand and practice universal love; then he would be gracious as a ruler, loyal as a minister, affectionate as a father, filial as a son, courteous as an elder brother, and respectful as a younger brother. So, if the gentleman desires to be a gracious ruler, a loyal minister, an affectionate father, a filial son, a courteous elder brother, and a respectful younger brother, universal love must be practiced. It is the way of the sage-kings and the great blessing of the people.

A generous man striving forwards never loses his goal.

If there is no mutual love between people, a mutual hatred will arise.

Suppose there were two people: one who maintains partiality and one who maintains impartiality. And the person who maintains partiality would say: ?How can I possibly regard the well being of my friends as I do my own well being?? How can I possibly regard the parents of my friends as I do my own parents?? And so when his friends are hungry, the partial person does not feed them. When his friends are ill, he does not nurture them. When his friends are cold, he does not clothe them.

What adds expenses but does not benefit the people, the Sage King does not undertake.

A man came by Mo Tzu?s school. Mo Tzu said, ?Why not come and study?? The reply was, ?No one in my family is learned.? Mo Tzu said, ?So what? Would a lover of beauty say ?No one in my family loves it, so I will not either?? Would a man who desired wealth and honors say ?No one in my family desires them, so I will not either?? ?When it comes to a love of beauty or desire for wealth and honors, people go ahead regardless of others. And righteousness is the greatest thing in the world. So why should one follow others in doing it??

If we could only make all the people in the world believe that the ghosts and spirits have the power to reward the worthy and punish the wicked, then how could there be any disorder in the world?

Suppose we try to locate the cause of disorder, we shall find it lies in the want of mutual love.

When feudal lords love one another there will be no more war; when heads of houses love one another there will be no more mutual usurpation; when individuals love one another there will be no more mutual injury. When ruler and ruled love each other they will be gracious and loyal; when father and son love each other they will be affectionate and filial; when older and younger brothers love each other they will be harmonious. When all the people in the world love one another, then the strong will not overpower the weak, the many will not oppress the few, the wealthy will not mock the poor, the honored will not disdain the humble, and the cunning will not deceive the simple. And it is all due to mutual love that calamities, strife, complaints, and hatred are prevented from arising. Therefore the benevolent exalt it.

A person will naturally follow the right way when under good influence. Thus, capable/skillful rulers are meticulous in their selection of people, but might be less careful in attending to/presiding-over the administration. But those who are incapable/lacking skill may wear out their body and deplete their energy, tax their mind and overextend their thought, yet have their states become more vulnerable and their selves be more humiliates. It?s not like the six princes [who came under bad influences and encountered calamities] did not care about their states or lives. It?s just that they did not properly understand the importance of things. And their notion of the importance of things was distorted by their bad influences.

If we should classify one by one all those who hate others and injure others, should we find them to be universal in love or partial? Of course we should say they are partial. Now, since partiality against one another is the cause of the major calamities in the empire, then partiality is wrong.

The murder of one person is called unrighteous and incurs one death penalty. Following this argument, the murder of ten persons will be ten times as unrighteous and there should be ten death penalties; the murder of a hundred persons will be a hundred times as unrighteous and there should be a hundred death penalties. All the gentlemen of the world know that they should condemn these things, calling them unrighteous. But when it comes to the great unrighteousness of attacking states, they do not know that they should condemn it. On the contrary, they applaud it, calling it righteous.

When nobody in the world loves any other, naturally the strong will overpower the weak, the many will oppress the few, the wealthy will mock the poor, the honored will disdain the humble, the cunning will deceive the simple. Therefore all the calamities, strifes, complaints, and hatred in the world have arisen out of want of mutual love. Therefore the benevolent disapproved of this want.

A state may face the onslaught of the Seven Perils. What are these Seven Perils? They are: 1. The palace and its chambers undergo renovations while the four walls of a fortress and its surrounding defensive trenches can hardly withstand the attack of enemies. 2. None of your neighbors comes to the rescue while enemies invade your territory. 3. Valuable human resources are used on useless projects and unworthy people are rewarded. 4. The officials are only concerned about protecting their jobs and income; scholars without posts are only concerned about establishing circles of influences. Meanwhile, a ruler amends laws to deter his ministers from voicing their opinions. 5. The ruler overestimates his own cleverness and fails to question the progress of administrative affairs. He takes no precautions because he assumes everything is in order. 6. Trusted ministers betray his trust while loyal ministers are cast aside. 7. Reserves and food crops are insufficient to feed the people, and ministers are incapable of shouldering government responsibilities. Rewards cannot make the people happy and punishments cannot keep them in awe. If a government runs into these Seven Perils, the state will certainly meet its demise. If a fortress runs into these Seven Perils, the city within the four walls will certainly fall into the hands of the enemy. Wherever these Seven Perils dwell there will be disasters.

Author Picture
First Name
Mozi or Mo-tze, Mocius or Mo-tzu, original name Mo Di, aka Master Mo
Birth Date
c. 470 B.C.
Death Date
c. 391 B.C.
Bio

Chinese Philosopher, founder of Mohist School, moral teachings emphasized self-reflection and authenticity rather than obedience to ritual in contrast to Confucius. He observed that we often learn about the world through adversity