shèn zhōng zhuī yuǎn 慎终追远
Mourn the Deceased and Memorialize Those Long Gone
This term means to hold obsequies in a proper way and cherish the memory of those long deceased. This is what Zengzi believed one should do toward the deceased. As someone passed away, with the passage of time, people close to him would forget the care and love shown to them by the deceased. So people should follow due procedures at a funeral to express their grief over the deceased and memorialize the altruism, virtue and achievement of the dead even long after his death. Zengzi believed this would increase care and love among the people.
Zengzi said, “When holding obsequies in a proper way and deeply remembering those who have long gone, people will become honest and sincere.” (The Analects)