In the autumn of 2006, Yu Dan, a professor of media studies at Beijing Normal University, gave a series of lectures entitled "Yu Dan's Insights into the Analects" which was broadcast for seven days on China Central Television. Her highly personal interpretation of Confucian thought was rapturously received, An edited transcript of the lectures sold 10,000 copies on the day it was published in book form and by September the following year the book had sold 4.2 million legal copies in China and an estimated 6 million pirated ones, remaining at the top of the Chinese bestseller lists today. Simply written, and with a view to taking the wisdom of Confucius out of the hands of the academics and the philosophers and making it accessible to the general reader, Confucius From the Heart gives us a contemporary Confucius, one who can teach us how to attain spiritual happiness, adjust our daily routines and find our place in modern life. Yu Dan argues that his sayings, or Analects - far from being merely interesting quotes from ancient lore, of little use in our hectic, stress-filled world.Instead, they are simple truths that can speak to each and every one of us and help us lead better, happier, calmer lives.
A professor at China's Beijing Normal University, assistant to the Dean, Faculty of Arts & Media, and Head of the Department of Film & Television Media, Yu Dan is now a household name in China. She has a master's degree in ancient Chinese literature and a doctoral degree in film & TV studies. Following the extraordinary success of her lectures and subsequent book on Confucius, she gave another series of her lectures, this time on the philosopher Zhuangzi, which has also been a massive bestseller.