[1] HSIEN〖The disciple Yüan Ssu.〗 asked, What is shame?

The Master said: “Hire when right prevails, hire when wrong prevails, hire is always shame.”

[2] “To eschew strife and boasting, spite and greed, can that be called love?”

The Master said: “I call that hard to do: I do not know that it is love.”

[3] The Master said: “A scholar who loves comfort is not worthy the name.”

[4] The Master said: “When right prevails, be fearless of speech and fearless in deed: when wrong prevails, be fearless in deed but soft of speech.”

[5] The Master said: “A man of worth can always talk, but talkers are not always men of worth. Love is always bold, though boldness is found without love.”

[6] Nan-kung Kuo said to Confucius: “Yi〖Yi was killed by his best pupil, who thought within himself, “In all the world Yi alone shoots better than I,” and so he slew him.〗 was good at archery, Ao could push a boat overland; each died before his time. Yu and Chi toiled at their crops, and won the world.”

The Master did not answer.

But when Nan-kung Kuo had left, the Master said:“What a gentleman he is! How he prizes worth!”

[7] The Master said: “Gentlemen without love there may be, but the vulgar must ever be strangers to love.”

[8] The Master said: “Can one love, yet take no pains? Can he be faithful who gives no counsel?”

[9] The Master said: “The decrees were drafted by P'i Shen, criticised by Shih-shu, polished by the Foreign Minister Tzu-yü, and given the final touches by Tzu-ch'an of Tung-li.”

[10] Being asked what he thought of Tzu-ch'an, the Master said: “A kind-hearted man.”

Asked what he thought of Tzu-hsi, the Master said: “Of him! What I think of him!”

Asked what he thought of Kuan Chung,〖See note to iii. 22.〗 the Master said: “He was the man who drove the Po from the town of Pien and its three hundred households, to end his days on coarse rice, and no word of wrong could he find to say.”

[11] The Master said: “It is hard not to chafe at poverty, a light thing not to be proud of wealth.”

[12] The Master said: “Meng Kung-ch'o is more than fit to be steward to Chao or Wei, but is not fit to be minister of T'eng or Hsieh.”

[13] Tzu-lu asked what were a full-grown man.

The Master said: “A man wise as Tsang Wu-chung, greedless as Kung-ch'o, bold as Chuang of Pien, skilful as Jan Ch'iu, and graced with courtesy and music, might be called a full-grown man. But to-day who asks the like of a full-grown man? Who in sight of gain remembers right, in face of danger will risk his life, and cleaves to his word for a lifetime, however old the bond, him we must call a full-grown man.”

[14] Speaking of Kung-shu Wen, the Master said to Kung-ming Chia: “Is it true that thy master does not speak, nor laugh, nor take a gift?”

Kung-ming Chia answered: “That is saying too much. My master speaks when it is time to speak, so none weary of his speaking: he laughs when he is merry, so none weary of his laughter: he takes what it is right to take, so none weary of his taking.”

“It may be so,” said the Master; “but is it?”

[15] The Master said: “When Tsang Wu-chung holding Fang asked Lu to appoint an heir, though he said that he was not forcing his prince, I cannot believe it.”

[16] The Master said: “Duke Wen of Chin was deep, but dishonest: Duke Huan of Ch'i was honest, but shallow.”

[17] Tzu-lu said: “When Duke Huan slew the young duke Chiu, Shao Hu died with him, but not Kuan Chung, was this not want of love.”〖Huan and Chiu were brothers, sons of the Duke of Ch'i. When the father died, their uncle seized the throne. To preserve the rightful heirs Shao Hu and Kuan Chung fled with Chiu to Lu, whilst Huan escaped to another state. The usurper having subsequently been murdered, Huan returned to Ch'i and secured the throne. He then required the Duke of Lu to kill his brother and deliver up to him Shao Hu and Kuan Chung. This was done. But on the way, to Ch'i, Shao Hu cut his throat. Kuan Chung, on the other hand, took service under Duke Huan, became his Prime Minister, and raised the state to greatness (see note to iii. 22).〗

The Master said: “Duke Huan gathered the nobles together, without help from chariots of war, through the might of Kuan Chung. What can love do more? What can love do more?”

[18] Tzu-kung said: “In becoming minister, instead of dying with the young duke Chiu, when he was slain by Duke Huan, Kuan Chung showed want of love, it would seem.”

The Master said: “Through Kuan Chung helping Duke Huan to bend the nobility, and tame the world, men have fared the better from that day unto this. But for Kuan Chung we should wear our hair down our backs and the left arm bare: or should he, like the ploughboy and his lass, their troth to keep, have drowned in a ditch, no man the wiser?”

[19] The minister Hsien, once steward to Kung-shu Wen, went to audience of the duke together with Wen.

When the Master heard of this, he said: “He is rightly called Wen (cultured).”

[20] The Master spake of the wickedness of Ling, Duke of Wei.

K'ang〖Chi K'ang.〗 said: “If that be so, how does he escape ruin?”

Confucius answered: “With Chung-shu Yü in charge of the guests, the reader T'o in charge of the Ancestral Temple, and Wang-sun Chia in charge of the troops, how should he come to ruin?”

[21] The Master said: “If the tongue have no fear, words are hard to make good.”

[22] “Ch'en Ch'eng murdered Duke Chien.〖B.C. 481, two years before the death of Confucius, who was not at the time in office. Chien was Duke of Ch'i, a state bordering on Lu. The three chiefs were the heads of the three great clans, all powerful in Lu.〗

Confucius cleansed himself, went to court, and told Duke Ai, saying: Ch'en Heng has murdered his prince. Pray chastise him.”

The duke said: “Tell the three chiefs.”

Confucius said: “Following in the wake of the ministry I dared not leave this untold; but the prince says, ‘Tell the three chiefs.’”

He told the three chiefs. It was vain.

Confucius said: “Following in the wake of the ministry I dared not leave this untold.’

[23] Tzu-lu asked how to serve the king.

The Master said: “Never cheat him: withstand him to the face.”

[24] The Master said: “A gentleman’s life leads upwards; a vulgar life leads down.”

[25] The Master said: “Men of old learned for their own sake: the men of to-day learn for show.”

[26] Ch'ü Po-yü sent an envoy to Confucius.

As they sat together, Confucius asked him: “How is your lord busied?”

He answered: “My lord tries to pare his faults, and tries in vain.”

When the envoy had left, the Master said: “An envoy, an envoy indeed!”

[27] The Master said: “When not in office discuss not policy.”

[28] Tseng-tzu said: “A gentleman is bent on keeping his place.”

[29] The Master said: “A gentleman is shamefast of speech: his deeds go further.

[30] The Master said: “In three ways I fall short of a gentleman. Love is never vexed; wisdom has no doubts; courage is without fear.”

Tzu-kung replied: “That is what ye say, Sir.”

[31] Tzu-kung would compare one man with another.

The Master said: “What talents Tz'u has! Now I have no time for this.”

[32] The Master said: “Sorrow not at being unknown: sorrow for thine own shortcomings.

[33] The Master said: “Not to expect falsehood, nor look for mistrust, and yet to forestall them, shows worth in a man.”

[34] Wei-sheng Mou said: “How dost thou still find roosts to roost on, Ch'iu, unless by wagging a glib tongue?”

Confucius answered: “I dare not wag a glib tongue; but I hate stubbornness.”

[35] The Master said: “A steed is not praised for his strength, but praised for his mettle.”

[36] One said: “To mete out good for evil, how were that?”

“And how would ye meet good?” said the Master. “Meet evil with justice: meet good with good.”

[37] The Master said: “Alas! no man knows me!”

Tzu-kung said: “Why do ye say, Sir, that no man knows you?”

The Master said: “Never murmuring against Heaven, nor finding fault with men; learning from the lowest, cleaving the heights. I am known but to one, but to Heaven.”

[38] Liao, the duke’s uncle, spake ill of Tzu-lu to Chi-sun.〖The head of the Chi clan, in whose service Tzu-lu was.〗

Tzu-fu Ching-po told this to Confucius, saying: “My lord’s mind is surely being led astray by the duke’s uncle, but strength is yet mine to expose his body in the market-place.”

The Master said: “The doom has fallen if truth is to win: it has fallen if truth is to lose. Can Liao, the duke’s uncle, fight against doom?”

[39] The Master said: “Men of worth shun the world; the next best shun the land. Then come men who go at a look, then men who go at speech.

[40] The Master said: “Seven men did so.”

[41] Tzu-lu spent a night at Shih-men.

The gate-keeper asked him: “Whence comest thou?”

“From Confucius,” he answered.

“The man who knows it is vain, yet cannot forbear to stir?” said the gate-keeper.

[42] When the Master was chiming his sounding stones in Wei, a basket-bearer said, as he passed the door: “His heart is full, who chimes those stones!” But then he added: “For shame! What a tinkling note! If no one heed thee, have done!

‘Wade the deep places,

Lift thy robe through the shallows.’”

The Master said: “Where there’s a will, that is lightly done.”

[43] Tzu-chang said: “What does the book mean by saying that Kao-tsung,〖An emperor of the house of Yin.〗 when mourning his predecessor, did not speak for three years?”

The Master said: “Why pick out Kao-tsung? Men of old were all thus. For three years after the king had died, the hundred officers acted each for himself, and obeyed the chief minister.”

[44] The Master said: “When those above love courtesy, the people are easy to lead.”

[45] Tzu-lu asked, What is a gentleman?

The Master said: “A man bent on shaping his mind.”

“Is that all?” said Tzu-lu.

“On shaping his mind to give happiness to others.”

“And is that all?”

“On shaping his mind to give happiness to the people,” said the Master. “To shape the mind and give happiness to the people, for this both Yao and Shun still pined.”

[46] Yüan Jang awaited the Master squatting.

The Master said: “Unruly when young, unmentioned as man, undying when old, spells good-for-nothing!” and hit him on the leg with his staff.

[47] When a lad from the village of Ch'üeh was made message-bearer, some one asked, saying: “Is it because he has made progress?”

The Master said: “I have seen him sitting in a man’s seat, seen him walking abreast of his elders. This shows no wish to improve, only hurry to be a man.”

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