The Analects of Confucius Book XI
1. The Master said, ‘The men of former times, in the matters of ceremonies and music were rustics, it is said, while the men of these latter times, in ceremonies and music, are accomplished gentlemen.
2. ‘If I have occasion to use those things, I follow the men of former times.’
1. The Master said, ‘Of those who were with me in Ch’an and Ts’ai, there are none to be found to enter my door.’
2. Distinguished for their virtuous principles and practice, there were Yen Yuan, Min Tsze-ch’ien, Zan Po-niu, and Chung-kung; for their ability in speech, Tsai Wo and Tsze-kung; for their administrative talents, Zan Yu and Chi Lu; for their literary acquirements, Tsze-yu and Tsze-hsia.
The Master said, ‘Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight.’
The Master said, ‘Filial indeed is Min Tsze-ch’ien! Other people say nothing of him different from the report of his parents and brothers.’
Nan Yung was frequently repeating the lines about a white scepter stone. Confucius gave him the daughter of his elder brother to wife.
Chi K’ang asked which of the disciples loved to learn. Confucius replied to him, ‘There was Yen Hui; he loved to learn. Unfortunately his appointed time was short, and he died. Now there is no one who loves to learn, as he did.’
1. When Yen Yuan died, Yen Lu begged the carriage of the Master to sell and get an outer shell for his son’s coffin.
2. The Master said, ‘Every one calls his son his son, whether he has talents or has not talents. There was Li; when he died, he had a coffin but no outer shell. I would not walk on foot to get a shell for him, because, having followed in the rear of the great officers, it was not proper that I should walk on foot.’
When Yen Yuan died, the Master said, ‘Alas! Heaven is destroying me! Heaven is destroying me!’
1. When Yen Yuan died, the Master bewailed him exceedingly, and the disciples who were with him said, ‘Master, your grief is excessive?’
2. ‘Is it excessive?’ said he.
3. ‘If I am not to mourn bitterly for this man, for whom should I mourn?’
1. When Yen Yuan died, the disciples wished to give him a great funeral, and the Master said, ‘You may not do so.’
2. The disciples did bury him in great style.
3. The Master said, ‘Hui behaved towards me as his father. I have not been able to treat him as my son. The fault is not mine; it belongs to you, O disciples.’
Chi Lu asked about serving the spirits of the dead. The Master said, ‘While you are not able to serve men, how can you serve their spirits?’ Chi Lu added, ‘I venture to ask about death?’ He was answered, ‘While you do not know life, how can you know about death?’
1. The disciple Min was standing by his side, looking bland and precise; Tsze-lu, looking bold and soldierly; Zan Yu and Tsze-kung, with a free and straightforward manner. The Master was pleased.
2. He said, ‘Yu, there!– he will not die a natural death.’ Chapter XIII. 1. Some parties in Lu were going to take down and rebuild the Long Treasury.
2. Min Tsze-ch’ien said, ‘Suppose it were to be repaired after its old style;– why must it be altered and made anew?’
3. The Master said, ‘This man seldom speaks; when he does, he is sure to hit the point.’
1. The Master said, ‘What has the lute of Yu to do in my door?’
2. The other disciples began not to respect Tsze-lu. The Master said, ‘Yu has ascended to the hall, though he has not yet passed into the inner apartments.’
1. Tsze-kung asked which of the two, Shih or Shang, was the superior. The Master said, ‘Shih goes beyond the due mean, and Shang does not come up to it.’
2. ‘Then,’ said Tsze-kung, ‘the superiority is with Shih, I suppose.’
3. The Master said, ‘To go beyond is as wrong as to fall short.’
1. The head of the Chi family was richer than the duke of Chau had been, and yet Ch’iu collected his imposts for him, and increased his wealth.
2. The Master said, ‘He is no disciple of mine. My little children, beat the drum and assail him.’
1. Ch’ai is simple.
2. Shan is dull.
3. Shih is specious.
4. Yu is coarse.
1. The Master said, ‘There is Hui! He has nearly attained to perfect virtue. He is often in want.
2. ‘Ts’ze does not acquiesce in the appointments of Heaven, and his goods are increased by him. Yet his judgments are often correct.’
Tsze-chang asked what were the characteristics of the good man. The Master said, ‘He does not tread in the footsteps of others, but moreover, he does not enter the chamber of the sage.’
The Master said, ‘If, because a man’s discourse appears solid and sincere, we allow him to be a good man, is he really a superior man? or is his gravity only in appearance?’
Tsze-lu asked whether he should immediately carry into practice what he heard. The Master said, ‘There are your father and elder brothers to be consulted;– why should you act on that principle of immediately carrying into practice what you hear?’ Zan Yu asked the same, whether he should immediately carry into practice what he heard, and the Master answered, ‘Immediately carry into practice what you hear.’ Kung-hsi Hwa said, ‘Yu asked whether he should carry immediately into practice what he heard, and you said, “There are your father and elder brothers to be consulted.” Ch’iu asked whether he should immediately carry into practice what he heard, and you said, “Carry it immediately into practice.” I, Ch’ih, am perplexed, and venture to ask you for an explanation.’ The Master said, ‘Ch’iu is retiring and slow; therefore, I urged him forward. Yu has more than his own share of energy; therefore I kept him back.’
The Master was put in fear in K’wang and Yen Yuan fell behind. The Master, on his rejoining him, said, ‘I thought you had died.’ Hui replied, ‘While you were alive, how should I presume to die?’
1. Chi Tsze-zan asked whether Chung Yu and Zan Ch’iu could be called great ministers.
2. The Master said, ‘I thought you would ask about some extraordinary individuals, and you only ask about Yu and Ch’iu! 3. ‘What is called a great minister, is one who serves his prince according to what is right, and when he finds he cannot do so, retires.
4. ‘Now, as to Yu and Ch’iu, they may be called ordinary ministers.’
5. Tsze-zan said, ‘Then they will always follow their chief;– will they?’
6. The Master said, ‘In an act of parricide or regicide, they would not follow him.’
1. Tsze-lu got Tsze-kao appointed governor of Pi.
2. The Master said, ‘You are injuring a man’s son.’
3. Tsze-lu said, ‘There are (there) common people and officers; there are the altars of the spirits of the land and grain. Why must one read books before he can be considered to have learned?’
4. The Master said, ‘It is on this account that I hate your glib-tongued people.’
1. Tsze-lu, Tsang Hsi, Zan Yu, and Kung-hsi Hwa were sitting by the Master.
2. He said to them, ‘Though I am a day or so older than you, do not think of that.
3. ‘From day to day you are saying, “We are not known.” If some ruler were to know you, what would you like to do?’
4. Tsze-lu hastily and lightly replied, ‘Suppose the case of a State of ten thousand chariots; let it be straitened between other large States; let it be suffering from invading armies; and to this let there be added a famine in corn and in all vegetables:– if I were intrusted with the government of it, in three years’ time I could make the people to be bold, and to recognise the rules of righteous conduct.’ The Master smiled at him.
5. Turning to Yen Yu, he said, ‘Ch’iu, what are your wishes?’ Ch’iu replied, ‘Suppose a state of sixty or seventy li square, or one of fifty or sixty, and let me have the government of it;– in three years’ time, I could make plenty to abound among the people. As to teaching them the principles of propriety, and music, I must wait for the rise of a superior man to do that.’
6. ‘What are your wishes, Ch’ih,’ said the Master next to Kung- hsi Hwa. Ch’ih replied, ‘I do not say that my ability extends to these things, but I should wish to learn them. At the services of the ancestral temple, and at the audiences of the princes with the sovereign, I should like, dressed in the dark square-made robe and the black linen cap, to act as a small assistant.’
7. Last of all, the Master asked Tsang Hsi, ‘Tien, what are your wishes?’ Tien, pausing as he was playing on his lute, while it was yet twanging, laid the instrument aside, and rose. ‘My wishes,’ he said, ‘are different from the cherished purposes of these three gentlemen.’ ‘What harm is there in that?’ said the Master; ‘do you also, as well as they, speak out your wishes.’ Tien then said, ‘In this, the last month of spring, with the dress of the season all complete, along with five or six young men who have assumed the cap, and six or seven boys, I would wash in the I, enjoy the breeze among the rain altars, and return home singing.’ The Master heaved a sigh and said, ‘I give my approval to Tien.’
8. The three others having gone out, Tsang Hsi remained behind, and said, ‘What do you think of the words of these three friends?’ The Master replied, ‘They simply told each one his wishes.’ 9. Hsi pursued, ‘Master, why did you smile at Yu?’
10. He was answered, ‘The management of a State demands the rules of propriety. His words were not humble; therefore I smiled at him.’
11. Hsi again said, ‘But was it not a State which Ch’iu proposed for himself?’ The reply was, ‘Yes; did you ever see a territory of sixty or seventy li or one of fifty or sixty, which was not a State?’
12. Once more, Hsi inquired, ‘And was it not a State which Ch’ih proposed for himself?’ The Master again replied, ‘Yes; who but princes have to do with ancestral temples, and with audiences but the sovereign? If Ch’ih were to be a small assistant in these services, who could be a great one?
The Analects of Confucius Book XII
1. Yen Yuan asked about perfect virtue. The Master said, ‘To subdue one’s self and return to propriety, is perfect virtue. If a man can for one day subdue himself and return to propriety, all under heaven will ascribe perfect virtue to him. Is the practice of perfect virtue from a man himself, or is it from others?’
2. Yen Yuan said, ‘I beg to ask the steps of that process.’ The Master replied, ‘Look not at what is contrary to propriety; listen not to what is contrary to propriety; speak not what is contrary to propriety; make no movement which is contrary to propriety.’ Yen Yuan then said, ‘Though I am deficient in intelligence and vigour, I will make it my business to practise this lesson.’
Chung-kung asked about perfect virtue. The Master said, ‘It is, when you go abroad, to behave to every one as if you were receiving a great guest; to employ the people as if you were assisting at a great sacrifice; not to do to others as you would not wish done to yourself; to have no murmuring against you in the country, and none in the family.’ Chung-kung said, ‘Though I am deficient in intelligence and vigour, I will make it my business to practise this lesson.’
1. Sze-ma Niu asked about perfect virtue.
2. The Master said, ‘The man of perfect virtue is cautious and slow in his speech.’
3. ‘Cautious and slow in his speech!’ said Niu;– ‘is this what is meant by perfect virtue?’ The Master said, ‘When a man feels the difficulty of doing, can he be other than cautious and slow in speaking?’
1. Sze-ma Niu asked about the superior man. The Master said, ‘The superior man has neither anxiety nor fear.’
2. ‘Being without anxiety or fear!’ said Nui;– ‘does this constitute what we call the superior man?’
3. The Master said, ‘When internal examination discovers nothing wrong, what is there to be anxious about, what is there to fear?’
1. Sze-ma Niu, full of anxiety, said, ‘Other men all have their brothers, I only have not.’
2. Tsze-hsia said to him, ‘There is the following saying which I have heard:–
3. ‘”Death and life have their determined appointment; riches and honours depend upon Heaven.”
4. ‘Let the superior man never fail reverentially to order his own conduct, and let him be respectful to others and observant of propriety:– then all within the four seas will be his brothers. What has the superior man to do with being distressed because he has no brothers?’
Tsze-chang asked what constituted intelligence. The Master said, ‘He with whom neither slander that gradually soaks into the mind, nor statements that startle like a wound in the flesh, are successful, may be called intelligent indeed. Yea, he with whom neither soaking slander, nor startling statements, are successful, may be called farseeing.’
1. Tsze-kung asked about government. The Master said, ‘The requisites of government are that there be sufficiency of food, sufficiency of military equipment, and the confidence of the people in their ruler.’
2. Tsze-kung said, ‘If it cannot be helped, and one of these must be dispensed with, which of the three should be foregone first?’ ‘The military equipment,’ said the Master.
3. Tsze-kung again asked, ‘If it cannot be helped, and one of the remaining two must be dispensed with, which of them should be foregone?’ The Master answered, ‘Part with the food. From of old, death has been the lot of all men; but if the people have no faith in their rulers, there is no standing for the state.’
1. Chi Tsze-ch’ang said, ‘In a superior man it is only the substantial qualities which are wanted;– why should we seek for ornamental accomplishments?’
2. Tsze-kung said, ‘Alas! Your words, sir, show you to be a superior man, but four horses cannot overtake the tongue.
3. Ornament is as substance; substance is as ornament. The hide of a tiger or a leopard stripped of its hair, is like the hide of a dog or a goat stripped of its hair.’
1. The Duke Ai inquired of Yu Zo, saying, ‘The year is one of scarcity, and the returns for expenditure are not sufficient;– what is to be done?’
2. Yu Zo replied to him, ‘Why not simply tithe the people?’
3. ‘With two tenths, said the duke, ‘I find it not enough;– how could I do with that system of one tenth?’
4. Yu Zo answered, ‘If the people have plenty, their prince will not be left to want alone. If the people are in want, their prince cannot enjoy plenty alone.’
1. Tsze-chang having asked how virtue was to be exalted, and delusions to be discovered, the Master said, ‘Hold faithfulness and sincerity as first principles, and be moving continually to what is right;– this is the way to exalt one’s virtue.
2. ‘You love a man and wish him to live; you hate him and wish him to die. Having wished him to live, you also wish him to die. This is a case of delusion.
3. ‘”It may not be on account of her being rich, yet you come to make a difference.”‘
1. The Duke Ching, of Ch’i, asked Confucius about government.
2. Confucius replied, ‘There is government, when the prince is prince, and the minister is minister; when the father is father, and the son is son.’
3. ‘Good!’ said the duke; ‘if, indeed; the prince be not prince, the minister not minister, the father not father, and the son not son, although I have my revenue, can I enjoy it?’
1. The Master said, ‘Ah! it is Yu, who could with half a word settle litigations!’
2. Tsze-lu never slept over a promise.
The Master said, ‘In hearing litigations, I am like any other body. What is necessary, however, is to cause the people to have no litigations.’
Tsze-chang asked about government. The Master said, ‘The art of governing is to keep its affairs before the mind without weariness, and to practise them with undeviating consistency.’
The Master said, ‘By extensively studying all learning, and keeping himself under the restraint of the rules of propriety, one may thus likewise not err from what is right.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man seeks to perfect the admirable qualities of men, and does not seek to perfect their bad qualities. The mean man does the opposite of this.’
Chi K’ang asked Confucius about government. Confucius replied, ‘To govern means to rectify. If you lead on the people with correctness, who will dare not to be correct?’
Chi K’ang, distressed about the number of thieves in the state, inquired of Confucius how to do away with them. Confucius said, ‘If you, sir, were not covetous, although you should reward them to do it, they would not steal.’
Chi K’ang asked Confucius about government, saying, ‘What do you say to killing the unprincipled for the good of the principled?’ Confucius replied, ‘Sir, in carrying on your government, why should you use killing at all? Let your evinced desires be for what is good, and the people will be good. The relation between superiors and inferiors, is like that between the wind and the grass. The grass must bend, when the wind blows across it.’
1. Tsze-chang asked, ‘What must the officer be, who may be said to be distinguished?’
2. The Master said, ‘What is it you call being distinguished?’
3. Tsze-chang replied, ‘It is to be heard of through the State, to be heard of throughout his clan.’
4. The Master said, ‘That is notoriety, not distinction.
5. ‘Now the man of distinction is solid and straightforward, and loves righteousness. He examines people’s words, and looks at their countenances. He is anxious to humble himself to others. Such a man will be distinguished in the country; he will be distinguished in his clan.
6. ‘As to the man of notoriety, he assumes the appearance of virtue, but his actions are opposed to it, and he rests in this character without any doubts about himself. Such a man will be heard of in the country; he will be heard of in the clan.’
1. Fan Ch’ih rambling with the Master under the trees about the rain altars, said, ‘I venture to ask how to exalt virtue, to correct cherished evil, and to discover delusions.’ 2. The Master said, ‘Truly a good question!
3. ‘If doing what is to be done be made the first business, and success a secondary consideration;– is not this the way to exalt virtue? To assail one’s own wickedness and not assail that of others;– is not this the way to correct cherished evil? For a morning’s anger to disregard one’s own life, and involve that of his parents;– is not this a case of delusion?’
1. Fan Ch’ih asked about benevolence. The Master said, ‘It is to love all men.’ He asked about knowledge. The Master said, ‘It is to know all men.’
2. Fan Ch’ih did not immediately understand these answers. 3. The Master said, ‘Employ the upright and put aside all the crooked;– in this way the crooked can be made to be upright.’ 4. Fan Ch’ih retired, and, seeing Tsze-hsia, he said to him, ‘A Little while ago, I had an interview with our Master, and asked him about knowledge. He said, ‘Employ the upright, and put aside all the crooked;– in this way, the crooked will be made to be upright.’ What did he mean?’
5. Tsze-hsia said, ‘Truly rich is his saying!
6. ‘Shun, being in possession of the kingdom, selected from among all the people, and employed Kao-yao, on which all who were devoid of virtue disappeared. T’ang, being in possession of the kingdom, selected from among all the people, and employed I Yin, and all who were devoid of virtue disappeared.’
Tsze-kung asked about friendship. The Master said, ‘Faithfully admonish your friend, and skillfully lead him on. If you find him impracticable, stop. Do not disgrace yourself.’
Chapter XXIV. The philosopher Tsang said, ‘The superior man on grounds of culture meets with his friends, and by their friendship helps his virtue.’
The Analects of Confucius Book XIII
1. Tsze-lu asked about government. The Master said, ‘Go before the people with your example, and be laborious in their affairs.’
2. He requested further instruction, and was answered, ‘Be not weary (in these things).’
1. Chung-kung, being chief minister to the Head of the Chi family, asked about government. The Master said, ‘Employ first the services of your various officers, pardon small faults, and raise to office men of virtue and talents.’
2. Chung-kung said, ‘How shall I know the men of virtue and talent, so that I may raise them to office?’ He was answered, ‘Raise to office those whom you know. As to those whom you do not know, will others neglect them?’
Chapter III. 1. Tsze-lu said, ‘The ruler of Wei has been waiting for you, in order with you to administer the government. What will you consider the first thing to be done?’
2. The Master replied, ‘What is necessary is to rectify names.’
3. ‘So, indeed!’ said Tsze-lu. ‘You are wide of the mark! Why must there be such rectification?’
4. The Master said, ‘How uncultivated you are, Yu! A superior man, in regard to what he does not know, shows a cautious reserve.
5. ‘If names be not correct, language is not in accordance with the truth of things. If language be not in accordance with the truth of things, affairs cannot be carried on to success.
6. ‘When affairs cannot be carried on to success, proprieties and music will not flourish. When proprieties and music do not flourish, punishments will not be properly awarded. When
punishments are not properly awarded, the people do not know how to move hand or foot.
7. ‘Therefore a superior man considers it necessary that the names he uses may be spoken appropriately, and also that what he speaks may be carried out appropriately. What the superior man requires, is just that in his words there may be nothing incorrect.’
1. Fan Ch’ih requested to be taught husbandry. The Master said, ‘I am not so good for that as an old husbandman.’ He requested also to be taught gardening, and was answered, ‘I am not so good for that as an old gardener.’
2. Fan Ch’ih having gone out, the Master said, ‘A small man, indeed, is Fan Hsu!
3. If a superior love propriety, the people will not dare not to be reverent. If he love righteousness, the people will not dare not to submit to his example. If he love good faith, the people will not dare not to be sincere. Now, when these things obtain, the people from all quarters will come to him, bearing their children on their backs;– what need has he of a knowledge of husbandry?’
The Master said, ‘Though a man may be able to recite the three hundred odes, yet if, when intrusted with a governmental charge, he knows not how to act, or if, when sent to any quarter on a mission, he cannot give his replies unassisted, notwithstanding the extent of his learning, of what practical use is it?’
The Master said, ‘When a prince’s personal conduct is correct, his government is effective without the issuing of orders. If his personal conduct is not correct, he may issue orders, but they will not be followed.’
The Master said, ‘The governments of Lu and Wei are brothers.’
The Master said of Ching, a scion of the ducal family of Wei, that he knew the economy of a family well. When he began to have means, he said, ‘Ha! here is a collection!’ When they were a little increased, he said, ‘Ha! this is complete!’ When he had become rich, he said, ‘Ha! this is admirable!’
1. When the Master went to Wei, Zan Yu acted as driver of his carriage.
2. The Master observed, ‘How numerous are the people!’
3. Yu said, ‘Since they are thus numerous, what more shall be done for them?’ ‘Enrich them,’ was the reply.
4. ‘And when they have been enriched, what more shall be done?’ The Master said, ‘Teach them.’
The Master said, ‘If there were (any of the princes) who would employ me, in the course of twelve months, I should have done something considerable. In three years, the government would be perfected.’
The Master said, ‘”If good men were to govern a country in succession for a hundred years, they would be able to transform the violently bad, and dispense with capital
punishments.” True indeed is this saying!’
The Master said, ‘If a truly royal ruler were to arise, it would still require a generation, and then virtue would prevail.’
The Master said, ‘If a minister make his own conduct correct, what difficulty will he have in assisting in government? If he cannot rectify himself, what has he to do with rectifying others?’
The disciple Zan returning from the court, the Master said to him, ‘How are you so late?’ He replied, ‘We had government business.’ The Master said, ‘It must have been family affairs. If there had been government business, though I am not now in office, I should have been consulted about it.’
1. The Duke Ting asked whether there was a single sentence which could make a country prosperous. Confucius replied, ‘Such an effect cannot be expected from one sentence.
2. ‘There is a saying, however, which people have– “To be a prince is difficult; to be a minister is not easy.”
3. ‘If a ruler knows this,– the difficulty of being a prince,– may there not be expected from this one sentence the prosperity of his country?’
4. The duke then said, ‘Is there a single sentence which can ruin a country?’ Confucius replied, ‘Such an effect as that cannot be expected from one sentence. There is, however, the saying which people have– “I have no pleasure in being a prince, but only in that no one can offer any opposition to what I say!”
5. ‘If a ruler’s words be good, is it not also good that no one oppose them? But if they are not good, and no one opposes them, may there not be expected from this one sentence the ruin of his country?’
1. The Duke of Sheh asked about government.
2. The Master said, ‘Good government obtains, when those who are near are made happy, and those who are far off are attracted.’
Tsze-hsia, being governor of Chu-fu, asked about government. The Master said, ‘Do not be desirous to have things done quickly; do not look at small advantages. Desire to have things done quickly prevents their being done thoroughly. Looking at small advantages prevents great affairs from being accomplished.’
1. The Duke of Sheh informed Confucius, saying, ‘Among us here there are those who may be styled upright in their conduct. If their father have stolen a sheep, they will bear witness to the fact.’
2. Confucius said, ‘Among us, in our part of the country, those who are upright are different from this. The father conceals the misconduct of the son, and the son conceals the misconduct of the father. Uprightness is to be found in this.’
Fan Ch’ih asked about perfect virtue. The Master said, ‘It is, in retirement, to be sedately grave; in the management of business, to be reverently attentive; in intercourse with others, to be strictly sincere. Though a man go among rude, uncultivated tribes, these qualities may not be neglected.’
1. Tsze-kung asked, saying, ‘What qualities must a man possess to entitle him to be called an officer? The Master said, ‘He who in his conduct of himself maintains a sense of shame, and when sent to any quarter will not disgrace his prince’s commission, deserves to be called an officer.’
2. Tsze-kung pursued, ‘I venture to ask who may be placed in the next lower rank?’ And he was told, ‘He whom the circle of his relatives pronounce to be filial, whom his fellow-villagers and neighbours pronounce to be fraternal.’
3. Again the disciple asked, ‘I venture to ask about the class still next in order.’ The Master said, ‘They are determined to be sincere in what they say, and to carry out what they do. They are obstinate little men. Yet perhaps they may make the next class.’
4. Tsze-kung finally inquired, ‘Of what sort are those of the present day, who engage in government?’ The Master said ‘Pooh! they are so many pecks and hampers, not worth being taken into account.’
The Master said, ‘Since I cannot get men pursuing the due medium, to whom I might communicate my instructions, I must find the ardent and the cautiously-decided. The ardent will advance and lay hold of truth; the cautiously-decided will keep themselves from what is wrong.’
1. The Master said, ‘The people of the south have a saying– “A man without constancy cannot be either a wizard or a doctor.” Good!
2. ‘Inconstant in his virtue, he will be visited with disgrace.’
3. The Master said, ‘This arises simply from not attending to the prognostication.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man is affable, but not adulatory; the mean man is adulatory, but not affable.’
Tsze-kung asked, saying, ‘What do you say of a man who is loved by all the people of his neighborhood?’ The Master replied, ‘We may not for that accord our approval of him.’ ‘And what do you say of him who is hated by all the people of his neighborhood?’ The Master said, ‘We may not for that conclude that he is bad. It is better than either of these cases that the good in the neighborhood love him, and the bad hate him.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man is easy to serve and difficult to please. If you try to please him in any way which is not accordant with right, he will not be pleased. But in his employment of men, he uses them according to their capacity. The mean man is difficult to serve, and easy to please. If you try to please him, though it be in a way which is not accordant with right, he may be pleased. But in his employment of men, he wishes them to be equal to everything.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man has a dignified ease without pride. The mean man has pride without a dignified ease.’
The Master said, ‘The firm, the enduring, the simple, and the modest are near to virtue.’
Tsze-lu asked, saying, ‘What qualities must a man possess to entitle him to be called a scholar?’ The Master said, ‘He must be thus,– earnest, urgent, and bland:– among his friends, earnest and urgent; among his brethren, bland.’
The Master said, ‘Let a good man teach the people seven years, and they may then likewise be employed in war.’
Chapter XXX. The Master said, ‘To lead an uninstructed people to war, is to throw them away.’
The Analects of Confucius Book XIV
Hsien asked what was shameful. The Master said, ‘When good government prevails in a state, to be thinking only of salary; and, when bad government prevails, to be thinking, in the same way, only of salary;– this is shameful.’
1. ‘When the love of superiority, boasting, resentments, and covetousness are repressed, this may be deemed perfect virtue.’
2. The Master said, ‘This may be regarded as the achievement of what is difficult. But I do not know that it is to be deemed perfect virtue.’
The Master said, ‘The scholar who cherishes the love of comfort is not fit to be deemed a scholar.’
The Master said, ‘When good government prevails in a state, language may be lofty and bold, and actions the same. When bad government prevails, the actions may be lofty and bold, but the language may be with some reserve.’
The Master said, ‘The virtuous will be sure to speak correctly, but those whose speech is good may not always be virtuous. Men of principle are sure to be bold, but those who are bold may not always be men of principle.’
Nan-kung Kwo, submitting an inquiry to Confucius, said, ‘I was skillful at archery, and Ao could move a boat along upon the land, but neither of them died a natural death. Yu and Chi personally wrought at the toils of husbandry, and they became possessors of the kingdom.’ The Master made no reply; but when Nan-kung Kwo went out, he said, ‘A superior man indeed is this! An esteemer of virtue indeed is this!’
The Master said, ‘Superior men, and yet not always virtuous, there have been, alas! But there never has been a mean man, and, at the same time, virtuous.’
The Master said, ‘Can there be love which does not lead to strictness with its object? Can there be loyalty which does not lead to the instruction of its object?’
The Master said, ‘In preparing the governmental notifications, P’i Shan first made the rough draught; Shi-shu examined and discussed its contents; Tsze-yu, the manager of Foreign intercourse, then polished the style; and, finally, Tsze-ch’an of Tung-li gave it the proper elegance and finish.’
1. Some one asked about Tsze-ch’an. The Master said, ‘He was a kind man.’
2. He asked about Tsze-hsi. The Master said, ‘That man! That man!’
3. He asked about Kwan Chung. ‘For him,’ said the Master, ‘the city of Pien, with three hundred families, was taken from the chief of the Po family, who did not utter a murmuring word, though, to the end of his life, he had only coarse rice to eat.’
The Master said, ‘To be poor without murmuring is difficult. To be rich without being proud is easy.’
The Master said, ‘Mang Kung-ch’o is more than fit to be chief officer in the families of Chao and Wei, but he is not fit to be great officer to either of the States Tang or Hsieh.’
1. Tsze-lu asked what constituted a complete man. The Master said, ‘Suppose a man with the knowledge of Tsang Wu-chung, the freedom from covetousness of Kung-ch’o, the bravery of hwang of Pien, and the varied talents of Zan Ch’iu; add to these the accomplishments of the rules of propriety and music:– such a one might be reckoned a complete man.’
2. He then added, ‘But what is the necessity for a complete man of the present day to have all these things? The man, who in the view of gain, thinks of righteousness; who in the view of danger is prepared to give up his life; and who does not forget an old agreement however far back it extends:– such a man may be reckoned a complete man.’
1. The Master asked Kung-ming Chia about Kung- shu Wan, saying, ‘Is it true that your master speaks not, laughs not, and takes not?’
2. Kung-ming Chia replied, ‘This has arisen from the reporters going beyond the truth.– My master speaks when it is the time to speak, and so men do not get tired of his speaking. He laughs when there is occasion to be joyful, and so men do not get tired of his laughing. He takes when it is consistent with righteousness to do so, and so men do not get tired of his taking.’ The Master said, ‘So! But is it so with him?’
The Master said, ‘Tsang Wu-chung, keeping possession of Fang, asked of the duke of Lu to appoint a successor to him in his family. Although it may be said that he was not using force with his sovereign, I believe he was.’
The Master said, ‘The duke Wan of Tsin was crafty and not upright. The duke Hwan of Ch’i was upright and not crafty.’
1. Tsze-lu said, ‘The Duke Hwan caused his brother Chiu to be killed, when Shao Hu died with his master, but Kwan Chung did not die. May not I say that he was wanting in virtue?’
2. The Master said, ‘The Duke Hwan assembled all the princes together, and that not with weapons of war and chariots:– it was all through the influence of Kwan Chung. Whose beneficence was like his? Whose beneficence was like his?’
1. Tsze-kung said, ‘Kwan Chung, I apprehend, was wanting in virtue. When the Duke Hwan caused his brother Chiu to be killed, Kwan Chung was not able to die with him. Moreover, he became prime minister to Hwan.’
2. The Master said, ‘Kwan Chung acted as prime minister to the Duke Hwan, made him leader of all the princes, and united and rectified the whole kingdom. Down to the present day, the people enjoy the gifts which he conferred. But for Kwan Chung, we should now be wearing our hair unbound, and the lappets of our coats buttoning on the left side.
3. ‘Will you require from him the small fidelity of common
men and common women, who would commit suicide in a stream or ditch, no one knowing anything about them?’
1. The great officer, Hsien, who had been family- minister to Kung-shu Wan, ascended to the prince’s court in company with Wan.
2. The Master, having heard of it, said, ‘He deserved to be considered WAN (the accomplished).’
1. The Master was speaking about the unprincipled course of the duke Ling of Wei, when Ch’i K’ang said, ‘Since he is of such a character, how is it he does not lose his State?’
2. Confucius said, ‘The Chung-shu Yu has the superintendence of his guests and of strangers; the litanist, T’o, has the management of his ancestral temple; and Wang-sun Chia has the direction of the army and forces:– with such officers as these, how should he lose his State?’
The Master said, ‘He who speaks without modesty will find it difficult to make his words good.’
1. Chan Ch’ang murdered the Duke Chien of Ch’i.
2. Confucius bathed, went to court, and informed the duke Ai, saying, ‘Chan Hang has slain his sovereign. I beg that you will undertake to punish him.’
3. The duke said, ‘Inform the chiefs of the three families of it.’
4. Confucius retired, and said, ‘Following in the rear of the great officers, I did not dare not to represent such a matter, and my prince says, “Inform the chiefs of the three families of it.”‘
5. He went to the chiefs, and informed them, but they would not act. Confucius then said, ‘Following in the rear of the great officers, I did not dare not to represent such a matter.’
Tsze-lu asked how a ruler should be served. The Master said, ‘Do not impose on him, and, moreover, withstand him to his face.’
The Master said, ‘The progress of the superior man is upwards; the progress of the mean man is downwards.’
The Master said, ‘In ancient times, men learned with a view to their own improvement. Now-a-days, men learn with a view to the approbation of others.’
1. Chu Po-yu sent a messenger with friendly inquiries to Confucius.
2. Confucius sat with him, and questioned him. ‘What,’ said he, ‘is your master engaged in?’ The messenger replied, ‘My master is anxious to make his faults few, but he has not yet succeeded.’ He then went out, and the Master said, ‘A messenger indeed! A messenger indeed!’
The Master said, ‘He who is not in any particular office, has nothing to do with plans for the administration of its duties.’
The philosopher Tsang said, ‘The superior man, in his thoughts, does not go out of his place.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man is modest in his speech, but exceeds in his actions.’
1. The Master said, ‘The way of the superior man is threefold, but I am not equal to it. Virtuous, he is free from anxieties; wise, he is free from perplexities; bold, he is free from fear.
2. Tsze-kung said, ‘Master, that is what you yourself say.’
Tsze-kung was in the habit of comparing men together. The Master said, ‘Tsze must have reached a high pitch of excellence! Now, I have not leisure for this.’
The Master said, ‘I will not be concerned at men’s not knowing me; I will be concerned at my own want of ability.’
The Master said, ‘He who does not anticipate attempts to deceive him, nor think beforehand of his not being believed, and yet apprehends these things readily (when they occur);– is he not a man of superior worth?’
1. Wei-shang Mau said to Confucius, ‘Ch’iu, how is it that you keep roosting about? Is it not that you are an insinuating talker?’
2. Confucius said, ‘I do not dare to play the part of such a talker, but I hate obstinacy.’
The Master said, ‘A horse is called a ch’i, not because of its strength, but because of its other good qualities.’ Chapter XXXVI.
1. Some one said, ‘What do you say concerning the principle that injury should be recompensed with kindness?’
2. The Master said, ‘With what then will you recompense kindness?
3. ‘Recompense injury with justice, and recompense kindness with kindness.’
1. The Master said, ‘Alas! there is no one that knows me.’
2. Tsze-kung said, ‘What do you mean by thus saying– that no one knows you?’ The Master replied, ‘I do not murmur against Heaven. I do not grumble against men. My studies lie low, and my penetration rises high. But there is Heaven;– that knows me!’
1. The Kung-po Liao, having slandered Tsze-lu to Chi-sun, Tsze-fu Ching-po informed Confucius of it, saying, ‘Our master is certainly being led astray by the Kung-po Liao, but I have still power enough left to cut Liao off, and expose his corpse in the market and in the court.’
2. The Master said, ‘If my principles are to advance, it is so ordered. If they are to fall to the ground, it is so ordered. What can the Kung-po Liao do where such ordering is concerned?’
1. The Master said, ‘Some men of worth retire from the world.
2. Some retire from particular states.
3. Some retire because of disrespectful looks.
4. Some retire because of contradictory language.’
The Master said, ‘Those who have done this are seven men.’
Tsze-lu happening to pass the night in Shih-man, the gatekeeper said to him, ‘Whom do you come from?’ Tsze-lu said, ‘From Mr. K’ung.’ ‘It is he,– is it not?’– said the other, ‘who knows the impracticable nature of the times and yet will be doing in them.’
1. The Master was playing, one day, on a musical stone in Wei, when a man, carrying a straw basket, passed the door of the house where Confucius was, and said, ‘His heart is full who so beats the musical stone.’
2. A little while after, he added, ‘How contemptible is the one-ideaed obstinacy those sounds display! When one is taken no notice of, he has simply at once to give over his wish for public employment. “Deep water must be crossed with the clothes on; shallow water may be crossed with the clothes held up.”‘
3. The Master said, ‘How determined is he in his purpose! But this is not difficult!’
1. Tsze-chang said, ‘What is meant when the Shu says that Kao-tsung, while observing the usual imperial mourning, was for three years without speaking?’
2. The Master said, ‘Why must Kao-tsung be referred to as an example of this? The ancients all did so. When the sovereign died, the officers all attended to their several duties, taking instructions from the prime minister for three years.’
The Master said, ‘When rulers love to observe the rules of propriety, the people respond readily to the calls on them for service.’
Tsze-lu asked what constituted the superior man. The Master said, ‘The cultivation of himself in reverential carefulness.’ ‘And is this all?’ said Tsze-lu. ‘He cultivates himself so as to give rest to others,’ was the reply. ‘And is this all?’ again asked Tsze-lu. The Master said, ‘He cultivates himself so as to give rest to all the people. He cultivates himself so as to give rest to all the people:– even Yao and Shun were still solicitous about this.’
Yuan Zang was squatting on his heels, and so waited the approach of the Master, who said to him, ‘In youth not humble as befits a junior; in manhood, doing nothing worthy of being handed down; and living on to old age:– this is to be a pest.’ With this he hit him on the shank with his staff.
1. A youth of the village of Ch’ueh was employed by Confucius to carry the messages between him and his visitors. Some one asked about him, saying, ‘I suppose he has made great progress.’
2. The Master said, ‘I observe that he is fond of occupying the seat of a full-grown man; I observe that he walks shoulder to shoulder with his elders. He is not one who is seeking to make progress in learning. He wishes quickly to become a man.’
The Analects of Confucius Book XV
1. The Duke Ling of Wei asked Confucius about tactics. Confucius replied, ‘I have heard all about sacrificial vessels, but I have not learned military matters.’ On this, he took his departure the next day.
2. When he was in Chan, their provisions were exhausted, and his followers became so ill that they were unable to rise. 3. Tsze-lu, with evident dissatisfaction, said, ‘Has the superior man likewise to endure in this way?’ The Master said, ‘The superior man may indeed have to endure want, but the mean man, when he is in want, gives way to unbridled license.’
1. The Master said, ‘Ts’ze, you think, I suppose, that I am one who learns many things and keeps them in memory?’
2. Tsze-kung replied, ‘Yes,– but perhaps it is not so?’ 3. ‘No,’ was the answer; ‘I seek a unity all-pervading.’
The Master said, ‘Yu, those who know virtue are few.’
The Master said, ‘May not Shun be instanced as having governed efficiently without exertion? What did he do? He did nothing but gravely and reverently occupy his royal seat.’
1. Tsze-chang asked how a man should conduct himself, so as to be everywhere appreciated.
2. The Master said, ‘Let his words be sincere and truthful, and his actions honourable and careful;– such conduct may be practised among the rude tribes of the South or the North. If his words be
not sincere and truthful and his actions not honourable and careful, will he, with such conduct, be appreciated, even in his neighborhood?
3. ‘When he is standing, let him see those two things, as it were, fronting him. When he is in a carriage, let him see them attached to the yoke. Then may he subsequently carry them into practice.’
4. Tsze-chang wrote these counsels on the end of his sash.
1. The Master said, ‘Truly straightforward was the historiographer Yu. When good government prevailed in his State, he was like an arrow. When bad government prevailed, he was like an arrow.
2. A superior man indeed is Chu Po-yu! When good
government prevails in his state, he is to be found in office. When bad government prevails, he can roll his principles up, and keep them in his breast.’
The Master said, ‘When a man may be spoken with, not to speak to him is to err in reference to the man. When a man may not be spoken with, to speak to him is to err in reference to our words. The wise err neither in regard to their man nor to their words.’
The Master said, ‘The determined scholar and the man of virtue will not seek to live at the expense of injuring their virtue. They will even sacrifice their lives to preserve their virtue complete.’
Tsze-kung asked about the practice of virtue. The Master said, ‘The mechanic, who wishes to do his work well, must first sharpen his tools. When you are living in any state, take service with the most worthy among its great officers, and make friends of the most virtuous among its scholars.’
1. Yen Yuan asked how the government of a country should be administered.
2. The Master said, ‘Follow the seasons of Hsia.
3. ‘Ride in the state carriage of Yin.
4. ‘Wear the ceremonial cap of Chau.
5. ‘Let the music be the Shao with its pantomimes.
6. Banish the songs of Chang, and keep far from specious talkers. The songs of Chang are licentious; specious talkers are dangerous.’
The Master said, ‘If a man take no thought about what is distant, he will find sorrow near at hand.’
The Master said, ‘It is all over! I have not seen one who loves virtue as he loves beauty.’
The Master said, ‘Was not Tsang Wan like one who had stolen his situation? He knew the virtue and the talents of Hui of Liu-hsia, and yet did not procure that he should stand with him in court.’
The Master said, ‘He who requires much from himself and little from others, will keep himself from being the object of resentment.’
The Master said, ‘When a man is not in the habit of saying– “What shall I think of this? What shall I think of this?” I can indeed do nothing with him!’
The Master said, ‘When a number of people are together, for a whole day, without their conversation turning on righteousness, and when they are fond of carrying out the suggestions of a small shrewdness;– theirs is indeed a hard case.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man in everything considers righteousness to be essential. He performs it according to the rules of propriety. He brings it forth in humility. He completes it with sincerity. This is indeed a superior man.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man is distressed by his want of ability. He is not distressed by men’s not knowing him.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man dislikes the thought of his name not being mentioned after his death.’
The Master said, ‘What the superior man seeks, is in himself. What the mean man seeks, is in others.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man is dignified, but does not wrangle. He is sociable, but not a partizan.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man does not promote a man simply on account of his words, nor does he put aside good words because of the man.’
Tsze-kung asked, saying, ‘Is there one word which may serve as a rule of practice for all one’s life?’ The Master said, ‘Is not reciprocity such a word? What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others.’
1. The Master said, ‘In my dealings with men, whose evil do I blame, whose goodness do I praise, beyond what is proper? If I do sometimes exceed in praise, there must be ground for it in my examination of the individual.
2. ‘This people supplied the ground why the three dynasties pursued the path of straightforwardness.’
The Master said, ‘Even in my early days, a historiographer would leave a blank in his text, and he who had a horse would lend him to another to ride. Now, alas! there are no such things.’
The Master said, ‘Specious words confound virtue. Want of forbearance in small matters confounds great plans.’
The Master said, ‘When the multitude hate a man, it is necessary to examine into the case. When the multitude like a man, it is necessary to examine into the case.’
The Master said, ‘A man can enlarge the principles which he follows; those principles do not enlarge the man.’
The Master said, ‘To have faults and not to reform them,– this, indeed, should be pronounced having faults.’
The Master said, ‘I have been the whole day without eating, and the whole night without sleeping:– occupied with thinking. It was of no use. The better plan is to learn.’
The Master said, ‘The object of the superior man is truth. Food is not his object. There is plowing;– even in that there is sometimes want. So with learning;– emolument may be found in it. The superior man is anxious lest he should not get truth; he is not anxious lest poverty should come upon him.’
1. The Master said, ‘When a man’s knowledge is sufficient to attain, and his virtue is not sufficient to enable him to hold, whatever he may have gained, he will lose again.
2. ‘When his knowledge is sufficient to attain, and he has virtue enough to hold fast, if he cannot govern with dignity, the people will not respect him.
3. ‘When his knowledge is sufficient to attain, and he has virtue enough to hold fast; when he governs also with dignity, yet if he try to move the people contrary to the rules of propriety:– full excellence is not reached.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man cannot be known in little matters; but he may be intrusted with great concerns. The small man may not be intrusted with great concerns, but he may be known in little matters.’
The Master said, ‘Virtue is more to man than either water or fire. I have seen men die from treading on water and fire, but I have never seen a man die from treading the course of virtue.’
The Master said, ‘Let every man consider virtue as what devolves on himself. He may not yield the performance of it even to his teacher.’
The Master said, ‘The superior man is correctly firm, and not firm merely.’
The Master said, ‘A minister, in serving his prince, reverently discharges his duties, and makes his emolument a secondary consideration.’
The Master said, ‘In teaching there should be no distinction of classes.’
The Master said, ‘Those whose courses are different cannot lay plans for one another.’
The Master said, ‘In language it is simply required that it convey the meaning.’
1. The Music-master, Mien, having called upon him, when they came to the steps, the Master said, ‘Here are the steps.’ When they came to the mat for the guest to sit upon, he said, ‘Here is the mat.’ When all were seated, the Master informed him, saying, ‘So and so is here; so and so is here.’
2. The Music-master, Mien, having gone out, Tsze-chang asked, saying. ‘Is it the rule to tell those things to the Music- master?’
3. The Master said, ‘Yes. This is certainly the rule for those who lead the blind.’
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Julianne has a bachelor’s in communication and journalism working with Psychic Spirituality & Relationships. She has also practiced numerology, tarot, and other psychic arts.