ài guó rú jiā 爱国如家
Love the Country as One Loves One’s Family
Originally, the concept denoted that kings, princes, and other rulers should love their kingdoms and their people the same way they did their own families. This is because in ancient China, family and state were considered same in structure. Later on, this concept became a moral value cherished by all patriotic people. It means that all those who love their motherland are intimately bound together as if they were from the same family, so they should love their country and its people in the same way they love their families. Loving one’s country is a profound and enduring tradition of the Chinese nation. It is at the core of the spirit of the Chinese nation, and it is a firm conviction of all Chinese, giving them a shared sense of belonging.
The appointing of feudal lords and making their positions inheritable were designed to make them love their people the same way they did their own children and love their kingdom the same way they loved their own families. (Xun Yue: A Chronicle of the Han Dynasty)
A person with noble aspiration loves his country the way he does his family. (Ge Hong: Baopuzi)