Excerpt: That process, as Confucius conceived it, was one of treating public good as a matter of personal goodness, rooted in a purity of heart and a discipline of mind. Noting that “things have roots and branches” and that “if the root be in confusion, nothing will be well governed,” the ancient Chinese sage outlines the six steps to a harmonious society.
2. A Sense of the Transcendent by Vaclav Havel
Excerpt from article, A Sense of the Transcendent, printed in CrossCurrents, Fall 1997, Volume 47, Issue 3: I realize that this is an oversimplified attempt to condense, in a few pages, some of my thoughts about the present-day world. I see the only chance for today’s civilization in a clear awareness of its multicultural character, in a radical enhancement of its inner spirit, and in an effort to find the shared spiritual roots of all cultures — for they are what unite all people. It is on this basis that we should articulate anew the standards and practices that will enable us to open up an entirely new era of mutual inspiration. The preconditions for this are genuine openness, the will to understand each other, and the ability to step beyond the confines of our own habits and prejudices. Identity is not a prison; it is an appeal for dialogue with others.