The title of the Analects, Lun-yü,, of Confucius, we can translate as something like “Discourses and Dialogues” — Analects,, would be “Digest” or “Collection”. One of the most influential books of all time, The Analects of Confucius collects the sayings and wisdom of the Chinese philosopher and his followers. quotes from The Analects: ‘The man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.’.
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That being established, all practical courses naturally grow up.
Filial piety and fraternal submission,-are they not the root of all benevolent actions? He should be earnest and truthful. He should overflow in love to all, and cultivate the friendship of the good. When he has time and opportunity, after the performance of these things, he should employ them in polite studies. Does he ask his information? If for three years he does not alter from the way of his father, he may be called filial.
In the ways prescribed by the ancient kings, this is the excellent quality, and in things small and great we follow them. If one, knowing how such ease should be prized, manifests it, without regulating it by the rules of propriety, this likewise is not to be done.
When respect is shown according to what is proper, one keeps far from shame and disgrace. When the parties upon whom a man leans are proper persons to be intimate with, he can make them his guides and masters.
I told him one point, and he knew its proper sequence. Mang Wu asked what filial piety was. Tsze-yu asked what filial piety was. But dogs and horses likewise are able to do something in the way of support;-without reverence, what is there to distinguish the one support given from the other? Tsze-hsia asked what filial piety was. If, when their elders have any troublesome affairs, the young take the toil of them, and if, when the young have wine and food, they set them before their elders, is THIS to be considered filial piety?
He has retired, and I have examined his conduct when away from me, and found him able to illustrate my teachings. Tsze-kung asked what constituted the superior man. The mean man is partisan and not catholic. When you know a thing, to hold that you know it; and when you do not know a thing, to allow that you do not know it;-this is knowledge. See much and put aside the things which seem perilous, while you are cautious at the same time in carrying the others into practice: When one gives few occasions for blame in his words, and few occasions for repentance in his conduct, he is in the way to get emolument.
Advance the crooked and set aside the upright, then the people will not submit. Let him be final and kind to all;-then they will be faithful to him.
Analects of Confucius 論語
Let him advance the good and teach the incompetent;-then they will eagerly seek to be virtuous. These qualities are displayed in government. Why must there be THAT-making one analecf in the government? How can a large carriage be made to go without the crossbar for yoking the oxen to, or a small carriage without the arrangement for yoking the horses?
The Chau dynasty has followed the regulations of Yin: Some other may follow the Chau, but though it should be at the distance of a hundred ages, its affairs may be known. The three families used the Yungode, while the vessels were being removed, at the conclusion of the sacrifice. If a man be without the virtues proper to humanity, what has he to do with music? In the ceremonies of mourning, it is better that there be deep sorrow than in minute attention to observances.
If it be said he cannot avoid them, shall this be in archery? But he bows complaisantly to his competitors; thus he ascends the hall, descends, and exacts the forfeit of drinking. In his contention, he is still the Chun-tsze.
The well-defined black and white of her eye! The plain ground for the colors?
Now I can begin to talk about the odes with him. I could describe the ceremonies of the Yin dynasty, but Sung cannot sufficiently attest my words. They cannot do so because of the insufficiency of their records and wise men.
If those were sufficient, I could adduce them in support of my words. Some one asked the meaning of the great sacrifice. He sacrificed to the dead, as if they were present.
He sacrificed to the spirits, as if the spirits were present. How complete and elegant are its regulations! The Analectt, when cinfucius entered the grand temple, asked about everything. Amalect has entered the grand temple and asks about everything. This was the old way. Tsze-kung wished to do away with the offering of a sheep connected with the inauguration of the first day of each month. The Duke Ting asked how a prince should employ his ministers, and how ministers should serve their prince.
The Duke Ai asked Tsai Wo about the altars of the spirits of the land. Kwan had likewise a screen at his gate. The analeect of States on any friendly meeting between two of them, had a stand on which to place their inverted cups.
Kwan had also such a stand. If Kwan knew the rules of propriety, who does not know them? At the commencement of the piece, all the parts should sound together. As it proceeds, they should be in harmony while severally distinct and flowing without break, and thus on to the conclusion. The kingdom has long been without the principles of truth and right; Heaven is going to use your master as a bell with its wooden tongue. The Master said of the Shao that it was perfectly beautiful and also perfectly good.
He said of the Wu that it was perfectly beautiful but not perfectly good. If a man in selecting a residence do not fix on one where such prevail, how can he be wise? The virtuous rest in virtue; the wise desire virtue. If they cannot be obtained in the proper way, they should not be held.
Poverty and meanness are what men dislike. If they cannot be avoided in the proper way, they should not be avoided. In moments of haste, he cleaves to it. In seasons of danger, he cleaves to it. He who loved virtue, would esteem nothing above it. He who hated what is not virtuous, would practice virtue in such a way that he would not allow anything that is not virtuous to approach his person. I have not seen the case in which his strength would be insufficient.
The superior man thinks of the sanctions of law; the small man thinks of favors which he may receive. If he cannot govern it with that complaisance, what has he to do with the rules of propriety? I am not concerned that I am not known, I seek to be worthy to be known. If he does go abroad, he must have a fixed place to which he goes. Between friends, frequent reproofs make the friendship distant. Accordingly, he gave him his own daughter to wife. Of Nan Yung he said that if the country were well governed he would not be out of office, and if it were in governed, he would escape punishment and disgrace.
He gave him the daughter of his own elder brother to wife.
The Analects of Confucius
If there were not virtuous men in Lu, how could this man have acquired this character? They who encounter men with smartness of speech for the most part procure aalect hatred.
I know not whether he be truly virtuous, but why should he show readiness of the tongue? I will get upon a raft, and float about on the sea. He that will accompany me will be Yu, I dare say. He does not exercise his judgment upon matters. Mang Wu asked about Tsze-lu, whether he was perfectly virtuous. Hui hears one point and knows confuciu about a subject; I hear one point, and know a second.
This Yu,-what is the use of my reproving him? Now my way is to hear their words, and look at their conduct. It is from Yu that I have learned to make this change. When Tsze-lu heard anything, if he had not yet succeeded in carrying it into practice, he was only afraid lest he should hear something else.
The acquaintance might be long, but he showed the confuciks respect as at first. Thrice he retired from office, and manifested annalect displeasure. He made it a point to inform the new minister of the way in which he had conducted the government; what do you say of him? How can he be pronounced perfectly virtuous?