Openness to Criticism

Confucius realized that an effective learner should not be afraid to make mistakes and should be open-minded about constructive criticism. Giving a good example, he encouraged his students to call him out whenever he was wrong:

“I have been fortunate. If I make a mistake, others will be sure to let me know.”

He even called out students who accepted his teachings without any critical thought. We read:

The Master said, “Yan Hui is no help to me. He is pleased with everything I say.”

Confucius openness to criticism disciples yan hui