Deliver Extensive Benefits to the People and Relieve the Suffering of the Poor
Delivering a wide range of benefits to the people and relieving the suffering of the poor is crucial for good governance. It requires that a ruler must treat his subjects with benevolence, be responsive to people’s needs and their difficulties and bring extensive benefits to them. Such a ruler deserves to be called a sage.
Zigong asked: “If a ruler delivers extensive benefits to his people and relieves the suffering of the poor, how would you rate him? Do you consider him benevolent and virtuous?” Confucius said: “He is not only benevolent and virtuous. I would call him a sage. Even virtuous rulers such as Yao and Shun could not match him.” (The Analects)