Zeng Guofan's Famliy Letters
Zeng Guofan, an important senior official in the late Qing Dynasty, gave his family instructions in family letters rather than a book. The thoughts of his family instructions, which do not draw the due attention of scholars, offer valuable implication for the current family education. His thoughts can be summarized from three aspects, i. e. reading books, being a man, and managing household. Specifically, Zeng instructs his children to read books by arguing that the purpose of reading books is not to be a successful candidate in the imperial entrance examination, but to learn how to be a man from the saints. Zeng also argues that everyone can be a saint only if s/he is obedient and humble and that a flourishing family depends on whether every family member is diligent, thrifty and kindhearted.