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There are many things with double meanings related to Mahjong. Those who believe Confucius had something to do with the game point to the oddity of only three dragons and claim that they represent the three cardinal virtues which Confucius taught. This could have some bearing, but could have just as easily been incorporated by someone who knew of his teachings.

Confucius set these ideals as benevolence, sincerity, and respect for ancestry. How these were translated into dragons isn't quite clear, but in Chinese lore, dragons weren't considered to be bad creatures. Actually, Chinese emperors believed they were dragons and they slept on dragon beds. Thrones were dragon seats and ceremonial gowns were dragon robes.

Whether you believe in the principles or not has little to do with the game of Mahjong, and for that reason, it makes little sense to suspect that these attributes were behind the first tiles made. Dragons were good so that is why the tiles were named so.

One thing that is certain, Mahjong is fun to play either in the traditional format with four players or online as a form of Solitaire. It is a bit habit forming once you begin to play, so you have been so warned. Have fun playing Mahjong and good luck!