Quoted and revered by many, Confucius' wisdom has transcended scores of generations and cultures.
Yesterday his enduring legacy was celebrated when more than 40,000 people attended the memorial ceremony for the 2558th anniversary of the great thinker's birthday.
The ceremony was part of the ongoing celebrations of the 10th anniversary of Hong Kong's return to the motherland.
The sacrificial ritual ceremony for Confucius included Ode to St Confucius, performed by a troupe from the city of Qufu, East China's Shandong Province, where Confucius was born.
"Many of the Confucian thoughts have proven truths for the governing of a country, for the proper behavior of a human being, as well as for the harmonious development of a society," Tong Yun-kai, chairman of the sacrificial ritual ceremony's organizing committee and president of the Confucian Academy based in Hong Kong, said.
"Many great values of Confucian thoughts have gained positive recognition even from State leaders."
He said the ceremony is expected to help further promote China's traditional culture, unite Chinese people home and abroad, better position Chinese culture and promote peace in the world.
"I know very little about Confucius," Paula Wong, a Hong Kong citizen, said.
"The ceremony taught me a lot about Confucian thought and China's rich traditional culture.
"I think I'm developing my interest in Confucianism and Chinese traditional culture," she said, adding that a better understanding of Confucianism and Chinese culture would encourage Hong Kong people to love the motherland more deeply.
Confucius was a great thinker, educator, politician and founder of Confucianism in ancient China.
Statistics indicate that there are 156 Confucian academies and more than 1,300 Confucian temples in 54 countries and regions.
Source: China Daily