Make a Fresh Start with the People
The term means to make political reform together with the people. Gengshi (更始) means to make a fresh start. The term used to refer to a new emperor ascending the throne, taking a new reign title or implementing a series of new policies. Later, it came to mean that the rulers worked together with the people trying to change the status quo and opening up new prospects. The term reflects a profound and far-reaching thought of putting people first, and highlights the spirit of monarchs and the people working with one heart and one mind to abolish what is old and establish in its place a new order.
I praise ancient emperors Yao and Shun; I like the Shang and Zhou dynasties. I have issued an imperial decree to either exempt criminals from punishment or commute their sentences on the basis of the old practice and new rules, so that we may open up a new era together with the people. (The History of the Han Dynasty)