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The Governing Principles of Ancient China - Qunshu Zhiyao 360

Cause and Effect

The Divine being will not bestow blessings or cast curses on one family alone. Those who do good deeds will be blessed with luck and fortune, while those who do bad deeds will be plagued with misfortune. Even small virtuous deeds can cause the whole nation to rejoice; while bad deeds, even if they are just minor offenses, may cause the whole nation to crumble.

Scroll 2: Shang Shu

Life or death, fortune or misfortune, are all but the result of our own doings. When people accumulate a multitude of meritorious deeds, no natural catastrophe will befall them.

Scroll 10: Kong Zi Jia Yu

When people behave badly upon the learning of good omens, the good omens will change to become disasters.

Scroll 40: Jia Zi

Natural disasters can be averted as long as people are willing to abandon their devious ways and do more good instead. But if they continue to commit bad deeds without remorse, they will never be able to escape the onslaught of misfortunes.

Scroll 2: Shang Shu

The sages are like creditors who hold on to the left side of a contract, but who do not use it to pressure debtor to return the borrowed goods. The virtuous, just like the sages, are always giving but not collecting. On the other hand, unscrupulous people are like tax collectors who are always collecting but not giving. In the way of heaven, there is no partiality of love; it is always on the side of the good man.*

Scroll 34: Lao Zi

*In ancient China, the “contract” was a bamboo piece divided into half, with the list of borrowed items engraved on each half—the left half with the debtor’s name is retained by the creditor, the right half with the creditor’s name is retained by the debtor. When goods are returned, both halves are matched to authenticate the contract.