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China and the Japanese sage

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Beijing – Last in a series

In China, demand for Kazuo Inamori’s philosophy keeps on growing. More than 4.2 million copies of Inamori’s 2007 book “The Way to Live” have been published in this country. Almost all of other books written by him have been translated into Chinese editions, with their total number of printed copies topping 10 million. China Central Television has aired special programs featuring Inamori a total of seven times since 2008.

No other foreign business entrepreneurs have ever exerted such broad and sustained influence in China as Inamori. During the Tang Dynasty period, Jianzhen (Ganjin) traveled east by sea and brought Chinese culture to Japan. In our time, Inamori has flown west to teach his philosophy in China.

There are two factors that explain why Inamori’s philosophy is so widely accepted in China. One lies in the philosophy itself. What constitutes the core of philosophy is the answer to the question, “What is right for a human being?” The simple and sound principles such as “Be honest as a human being” and “Don’t tell a lie” are universal ideas that are acceptable to everybody and not susceptible to change with the passage of time.

That holds true for corporate management as well. Inamori says his purpose of starting a business is to “pursue mental and material happiness of all employees and at the same time contribute to progress and development of humankind and society.” Under this concept, both employers and employees are the main players of the company. They all love it and gladly work for its development, and rack their brains together to get the job done. This way they can........

© The Japan Times