Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Breadth of Mind

Not refusing any tiny soil and pebble, the Tai Mountain towers into the sky; collecting all the small streams, the rivers and oceans become deep and wide.” – Li Si (280 -208 BC), Qin Dynasty.

TaiShan - 泰山
Photo courtesy: laserspit on Flickr

All flowers compete in splendor, so we can enjoy a beautiful spring. The sea leniently accepts all rivers flowing into it, so it has its awe-inspiring magnificence. A country can take all kinds of talents into good use, so people can benefit from its prosperity and greatness.

When we are narrow-minded, we are easily fettered by anger, prejudice and hatred. If we see through the world with colored glasses, we can never really know its true nature. A prejudiced person will bind himself up with his prejudice; a biased person will be harmed by his partial view.

If everything follows the same pattern, the world may be dull and boring. Different people can live together in harmony with mutual understanding and mutual respect. Different cultures can take in the good thoughts and philosophy from the other cultures.

When people are harsh or the culture is abusive, we can develop a callous heart and a standoffish attitude. If we stand on the mountaintop, we can see far. If we uplift our soul, we will know we can forgive anybody.

It requires wisdom to open your heart and broaden your mind. The wiser a person is, the broader his mind. We can broad our mind and enrich our soul by doing the following:

Be nice to people. You don’t know that there may be a small war inside everyone. A hateful person can be in his troubled time. Use your smile to warm them up.

Learn different cultures and beliefs. Don’t behave like a frog at the bottom of a well – only able to see the little patch of sky above. We can expand our vision by selectively learning from the other people and cultures.

Be tolerant of opinions different from one’s own. People have different family backgrounds, personal experiences, cultural customs and social economic situations. If you think from their points of view and try to walk in their shoes, they may be right.

Be liberal to an opponent. An opponent, whether his perspective is correct or wrong, will provide you some valuable viewpoints, so that you can improve yourself and do better. Looking back, you will find you benefit more from your opponents than your friends.

Be open to new experiences and ways of thinking. Don’t stereotype yourself. There is always a new way of thinking. Even the greatest inventor Addison can resist the idea of alternative current.

Lifelong learning. During this fast-paced information age, if you don’t improve yourself and learn something new everyday, you fall behind. If we open our heart, we can learn something useful from almost everybody.


Jennifer Lim said...

Very insightful thoughts and advice. Thanks.

Jade Meng said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Daisy said...

What an inspiring post!

Btw, thanks for the EC ad. I approved it now and should be running in a few days! In the meantime, one suggestion to help you promote your blog is through Adgitize.


Jade Meng said...

Jennifer, thank you for your nice words. Around 500 BC, all schools of profound philosophy came into shape in China. I am trying to find pearls of wisdom from the ancient culture. (I deleted the last comment due to a typo.)

Daisy, thanks for your advice. I registered Adgitize, but I haven't made it into use. I should try more.

Poetic Shutterbug said...

Learning different cultures and beliefs is very important. You have a very insightful mind and the photo is stunning.

Jade Meng said...

Poetic Shutterbug, thank you for your comments. From your blog, I know you are interested in Asian culture very much. I sould visit more.

Steve Borgman said...

I enjoy reading your blog. I would agree with most of your points. However, I do believe that it is important that we feel free to be able to disagree with others, without that being perceived as intolerant. Sometimes I think that tolerance has become an absolute truth, which, ironically, asserts that there are no absolutes, then requires that we accept that fact as absolute truth.

Jade Meng said...

Thanks, Steve Borgman,you are insightful. We can disagree with others' opinions with tolerance. No one is absolutely right, only truth and fact is absolutely right.

Anonymous said...

"Be open to new experiences and ways of thinking"
This word will inspire me every morning, now I know live is beutifful.

Ivan said...



Jade Meng said...

对啊,Ivan, 就是用的这个典故。我猜你在澳大利亚,对吗?

Ivan said...



L. Venkata Subramaniam said...

great advice that we could all use. I especially like that you have said that we should be open to new experiences and ways of thinking. It is so important that we do. The day we stop we actually stop growing.