孝顺 / 孝敬

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yuechu

Senior Member
Canada, English
Hello/大家好,

我想问一下: Is there a difference between the verbs 孝顺 vs 孝敬 ? (is one more common/formal, etc, than the other, or used in different contexts?)
Thanks/谢谢!
 
  • Ghabi

    Senior Member
    Cantonese
    Hello! I think 孝順 is what one does to one's parents (serious things like "filial duties"), while 孝敬 is what one does to anyone one wants to suck up to (can include one's parents of course).

    The mid-autumn festival is coming, so supposedly many are now busy preparing gifts for 孝敬 purpose (陳總,小小意思,不成敬意,以後多多關照 etc).

    In the old novels you may come across the phrase 孝順父母官, but nowadays I think you can only 孝敬官員.
     

    Skatinginbc

    Senior Member
    Mandarin 國語
    孝敬 (= 孝 + 敬 "respect") means "to take care and respect one's parents"; 孝順 (= 孝 + 順 "obey") means "to take care and obey one's parents" . Both terms share the core meaning of 孝 "filial piety" and are near-synonymous.
    孝敬, if not referring to filial piety, means 敬獻, that is, "to show respect to someone by presenting gifts as a tribute". The word 孝 in this case is in its figurative sense, meaning "to respect someone as if he/she were the parent". Teachers are highly honored and respected in the Chinese society and so you may bring a gift to your teacher and say: "这是孝敬您的". But if you bring a gift to your boss and say "这是孝敬您的", it can be construed by some as "servile".
     

    yuechu

    Senior Member
    Canada, English
    Thanks, Ghabi and Skatinginbc, for your replies!

    Ah, this explains why my students in China were talking about showing filial piety to their teachers/bosses... ! It all makes sense now (with there being a 孝顺 vs 孝敬 distinction). 谢谢!
     
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