Compare And Contrast Confucius And Mencius

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In the discussion on the methods of governing and administration of a state, one cannot leave out the models proposed by Confucius as well as Mencius. Both advocated that the ruler or the government has to rule by virtue and strengthen moral education among its people. Political leaders have to set moral examples for the people to follow, and to be benevolent towards their subordinates and citizens. By doing so, that would bring about social stability and population growth within the state, also creating conditions that would lead to an improvement in the welfare of the people. By fulfilling his duties to the people, a just and benevolent ruler would then be justified to rule by the Mandate of Heaven. Although both Confucius and Mencius have a lot in common with regards to governance, the two do have varying opinions on certain matters such as the legitimacy when rulers are overthrown, and the relationship between the ruler and his people.
In precedence to coming up with policies and administrative measures, one has to first consider the issue of human nature as it plays an essential role in the development of a state 's political system. In the Confucian philosophy, the belief is that goodness is innate in humans and that everyone shares this same trait [子曰:“性相近也,习相远也。”] (Analects, 17.2). Mencius further elaborated on this doctrine by stating that it is mankind’s natural tendency to be kind to others, just as water would naturally flow downwards (Mencius, 6A2). Mencius also

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