A youth, when at home, should be filial and, abroad, respectful to his elders. 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.
To rule a country of a thousand chariots, there must be reverent attention to business, and sincerity; economy in expenditure, and love for men; and the employment of the people at the proper seasons.
Please stop waiting for a better and more appropriate time to become happy and focus on the moment you live in. Happiness is not an arrival, it is the journey itself. Many people seek for happiness above the height of human beings, some below. Yet, happiness is exactly at the exact height of human beings.
Do not wish for quick results, nor look for small advantages. If you seek quick results, you will not reach the ultimate goal. If you are led astray by small advantages, you will never accomplish great things.
Things being investigated, knowledge became complete. Their knowledge being complete, their thoughts were sincere. Their thoughts being sincere, their hearts were then rectified. Their hearts being rectified, their persons were cultivated. Their persons being cultivated, their families were regulated. Their families being regulated, their States were rightly governed. Their States being rightly governed, the whole kingdom was made tranquil and happy.
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.
I do not enlighten those who are not eager to learn, nor arouse those who are not anxious to give an explanation themselves. If I have presented one corner of the square and they cannot come back to me with the other three, I should not go over the points again.
Only one who bursts with enthusiasm do I instruct; Only one who bubbles with excitement do I enlighten. If I hold up one corner and you do not come back to me with the other three, I do not continue the lesson.
The man who in 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.
Great as heaven and earth are, men still find some things in them with which to be dissatisfied. Thus it is that, were the superior man to speak of his way in all its greatness, nothing in the world would be found able to embrace it, and were he to speak of it in its minuteness, nothing in the world would be found able to split it.
Earnest in practicing the ordinary virtues, and careful in speaking about them, if, in his practice, he has anything defective, the superior man dares not but exert himself; and if, in his words, he has any excess, he dares not allow himself such license.
There is a growing interest in Confucianism in China and other parts of the world. More and more followers of Confucianism are advocating a deeper study of his philosophies. Confucius' ideals stand true even today. His philosophy on how to be a Junzi or the perfect gentleman is based on the simple ideology of love and tolerance.
I daily examine myself on three points: In planning for others, have I failed in conscientiousness? In intercourse with friends, have I been insincere? And have I failed to practice what I have been taught?
I saw some piglets suckling their dead mother. After a short while they shuddered and went away. They had sensed that she could no longer see them and that she wasn't like them any more. What they loved in their mother wasn't her body, but whatever it was that made her body live.
There are three sorts of pleasures which are advantageous, and three which are injurious. Finding pleasure in the discriminating study of ceremonies and music, finding pleasure in discussing the good points in the conduct of others, and finding pleasure in having many wise friends, these are advantageous. But finding pleasure in profligate enjoyments, finding pleasure in idle gadding about, and finding pleasure in feasting, these are injurious.
If the gentleman is not serious, he will not be respected, and his learning will not be on a firm foundation. He considers loyalty and faithfulness to be fundamental, has no friends who are not like him, and when he has made mistakes, he is not afraid of correcting them.
The young should be dutiful at home, modest abroad, careful and true, overflowing in kindness for all, but in brotherhood with love. And if they have strength to spare they should spend it on the arts.
Love of goodness without love of learning degenerates into simple-mindedness. Love of knowledge without love of learning degenerates into utter lack of principle. Love of faithfulness without love of learning degenerates into injurious disregard of consequences. Love of uprightness without love of learning degenerates into harshness. Love of courage without love of learning degenerates into insubordination. Love of strong character without love of learning degenerates into mere recklessness.
Yin and yang, male and female, strong and weak, rigid and tender, heaven and earth, light and darkness, thunder and lightning, cold and warmth, good and evil...the interplay of opposite principles constitutes the universe.
Love thy neighbor as thyself: Do not do to others what thou wouldst not wish be done to thyself: Forgive injuries. Forgive thy enemy, be reconciled to him, give him assistance, invoke God in his behalf.
Those people who develop the ability to continuously acquire new and better forms of knowledge that they can apply to their work and to their lives will be the movers and shakers in our society for the indefinite future.
The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra. The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me you don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step the man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.
At 15 I set my heart on learning; At 30 I firmly took my stand; At 40 I had no delusions; At 50 I knew the Mandate of Heaven; At 60 my ear was attuned; At 70 I followed my heart's desire without overstepping the boundaries of right.
First there must be order and harmony within your own mind. Then this order will spread to your family, then to the community, and finally to your entire kingdom. Only then can you have peace and harmony.
To put the world in order, we must first put the nation in order; to put the nation in order, we must first put the family in order; to put the family in order; we must first cultivate our personal life; we must first set our hearts right.
Love others as you would love yourself, judge others as you would judge yourself, cherish others as you would cherish yourself. When you wish for others as you wish for yourself and when you protect others as you would protect yourself, that's when you can say it's true love.
Listen much, keep silent when in doubt, and always take heed of the tongue; thou wilt make few mistakes. See much, beware of pitfalls, and always give heed to thy walk; thou wilt have little to rue. If thy words are seldom wrong, thy deeds leave little to rue, pay will follow.
When the Superior Man eats he does not try to stuff himself; at rest he does not seek perfect comfort; he is diligent in his work and careful in speech. He avails himself to people of the Tao and thereby corrects himself. This is the kind of person of whom you can say, 'he loves learning.'
The superior man, when resting in safety, does not forget that danger may come. When in a state of security he does not forget the possibility of ruin. When all is orderly, he does not forget that disorder may come. Thus his person is not endangered, and his States and all their clans are preserved.
It is the way of the superior man to prefer the concealment of his virtue, while it daily becomes more illustrious, and it is the way of the mean man to seek notoriety, while he daily goes more and more to ruin.
The superior man honors his virtuous nature, and maintains constant inquiry and study, seeking to carry it out to its breadth and greatness, so as to omit none of the more exquisite and minute points which it embraces, and to raise it to its greatest height and brilliancy.
To study and constantly, is this not a pleasure? To have friends come from far away places, is this not a joy? If people do not recognize your worth, but this does not worry you, are you not a true gentleman?
Listen widely to remove your doubts and be careful when speaking about the rest and your mistakes will be few. See much and get rid of what is dangerous and be careful in acting on the rest and your causes for regret will be few. Speaking without fault, acting without causing regret: 'upgrading' consists in this.
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.
How to play music may be known. 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 superior man does what is proper to the station in which he is; he does not desire to go beyond this. In a position of wealth and honor, he does what is proper to a position of wealth and honor. In a poor and low position, he does what is proper to a poor and low position.
How abundantly do spiritual beings display the powers that belong to them! We look for them, but do not see them; we listen to, but do not hear them; yet they enter into all things, and there is nothing without them.
First and foremost, be faithful to your superiors, keep all promises, refuse the friendship of all who are not like you; and if you have made a mistake, do not be afraid of admitting the fact and amending your ways.
place where man laughs, sings, picks flowers, chases butterflies and pets birds, makes love with maidens, and plays with children. Here he spontaneously reveals his nature, the base as well as the noble. Here also he buries his sorrows and difficulties and cherishes his ideals and hopes. It is in the garden that men discover themselves. Indeed one discovers not only his real self but also his ideal self?he returns to his youth. Inevitably the garden is made the scene of man's merriment, escapades, romantic abandonment, spiritual awakening or the perfection of his finer self.
These are the four abuses: desire to succeed in order to make oneself famous; taking credit for the labors of others; refusal to correct one's errors despite advice; refusal to change one's ideas despite warnings.
When you serve your mother and father it is okay to try to correct them once in a while. But if you see that they are not going to listen to you, keep your respect for them and don't distance yourself from them. Work without complaining.
Here is an example of Confucius sayings: "It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop." In a few words, Confucius teaches us about patience, perseverance, discipline, and hard work. But if you probe further, you will see more layers. Confucius' philosophies have significantly influenced spiritual and social thought. His views bear insight and depth of wisdom. You can apply his teachings in every sphere of life. Confucius' profound teachings are based on humanism.
At fifteen, my mind was bent on learning. At thirty, I stood firm. At forty, I had no doubts. At fifty, I knew the decrees of Heaven. At sixty, my ear was receptive to truth. At seventy, I could follow my heart's desires without sin.
Be sincere and true to your word, serious and careful in your actions; and you will get along even among barbarians, But if you are not sincere and untrustworthy in your speech, frivolous and careless in your actions, how will you get along even among your own neighbors? When stand, see these principles in front of you; in your carriage see them on the yoke. Then you may be sure to get along.
The gentleman has nine cares. In seeing he is careful to see clearly; in hearing he is careful to hear distinctly; in his looks he is careful to be kind, in his manner to be respectful, in his words to be sincere, in his work to be diligent. When in doubt he is careful to ask for information; when angry he has a care for the consequences; and when he sees a chance for gain, he thinks carefully whether the pursuits of it would be right.
When we have intelligence resulting from sincerity, this condition is to be ascribed to nature; when we have sincerity resulting from intelligence, this condition is to be ascribed to instruction. But given the sincerity, and there shall be the intelligence; given the intelligence, and there shall be the sincerity.
Isn't it a pleasure to study and practice what you have learned? Isn't it also great when friends visit from distant places? If one remains not annoyed when his greatness is not recognized in his time, isn't he a sage?
It is true that we shall not be able to reach perfection, but in our struggle toward it we shall strengthen our characters and give stability to our ideas, so that, whilst ever advancing calmly in the same direction, we shall be rendered capable of applying the faculties with which we have been gifted to the best possible account.
If I were travelling with two partners, one virtuous and one dishonest, both would be useful as teachers. I would perceive what's good of the first one and I would imitate him whereas I would try to correct in me the defects I may see in the second one.
The failure to cultivate virtue, the failure to examine and analyze what I have learned, the inability to move toward righteousness after being shown the way, the inability to correct my faults-these are the causes of my grief.
On matters beyond his ken a gentleman speaks with caution. If names are not right, words are misused. When words are misused, affairs go wrong. When affairs go wrong, courtesy and music droop, law and justice fail. And when law and justice fail them, a people can move neither hand nor foot. So a gentleman must be ready to put names in speech, to put words into deeds. A gentleman is nowise careless of words.
The nobler sort of man emphasizes the good qualities in others, and does not accentuate the bad. The inferior does the reverse. . . . The nobler sort of man pays special attention to nine points. He is anxious to see clearly, to hear distinctly, to be kindly in his looks, respectful in his demeanor, conscientious in his speech, earnest in his affairs. When in doubt, he is careful to inquire; when in anger, he thinks of the consequences; when offered an opportunity for gain, he thinks only of his duty.
I have never seen one who really loves goodness or one who really hates wickedness. One who really loves goodness will not place anything above it. One who really hates wickedness will practice goodness in such a way that wickedness will have no chance to get at him. Is there anyone who has devoted his whole strength to doing good for even as long as a single day? I have not seen anyone give up such an attempt because he had not the strength to go on. Perhaps there is such a case, but I have never seen it.
A gentleman, in his plans, thinks of the Way; he does not think how he is going to make a living. Even farming sometimes has a shortage; and even learning may incidentally bring a salary. A gentleman is concerned with the progress of the Way; he is not anxious about poverty.
What is God-given is called nature; to follow nature is called Tao (the Way); to cultivate the way is called culture. Before joy, anger, sadness and happiness are expressed, they are called the inner self; when they are expressed to the proper degree, they are called harmony. The inner self is the correct foundation of the world, and the harmony is the illustrious Way. When a man has achieved the inner self and harmony, the heaven and earth are orderly and the myriad of things are nourished and grow thereby.
Because the newer methods of treatment are good, it does not follow that the old ones were bad: for if our honorable and worshipful ancestors had not recovered from their ailments, you and I would not be here today.
What Heaven has conferred is called The Nature; an accordance with this nature is called The Path of duty; the regulation of this path is called Instruction. The path may not be left for an instant. If it could be left, it would not be the path.
Every piece of marble has a statue in it waiting to be released by a person of sufficient skill to chip away the unnecessary parts. Just as the sculptor is to the marble, so is education to the soul. It releases it. For only educated people are free people. You cannot create a statue by smashing the marble with a hammer, and you cannot by the force of arms release the spirit or the soul of people.
Tzu Chang asked Confucius about jen. Confucius said, "If you can practice these five things with all the people, you can be called jen." Tzu Chang asked what they were. Confucius said, "Courtesy, generosity, honesty, persistence, and kindness. If you are courteous, you will not be disrespected; if you are generous, you will gain everything. If you are honest, people will rely on you. If you are persistent you will get results. If you are kind, you can employ people.
There are three friendships which are advantageous, and three which are injurious. Friendship with the upright; friendship with the sincere; and friendship with the man of much observation: these are advantageous. Friendship with the man of specious airs; friendship with the insinuatingly soft; and friendship with the glib-tongued: these are injurious.
Riches and honor are what everyone desires, but if they can be gained only by doing evil, they must not be held. Don't worry about not being in office, worry about qualifying yourself for office. Don't worry that no one knows you, but seek to be worthy of being known.
Sincerity becomes apparent. From being apparent, it becomes manifest. From being manifest, it becomes brilliant. Brilliant, it affects others. Affecting others, they are changed by it. Changed by it, they are transformed. It is only he who is possessed of the most complete sincerity that can exist under heaven, who can transform.
Some are born with knowledge, some derive it from study, and some acquire it only after a painful realization of their ignorance. But the knowledge being possessed, it comes to the same thing. Some study with a natural ease, some from a desire for advantages, and some by strenuous effort. But the achievement being made, it comes to the same thing.
He who learns but does not think, is lost! He who thinks but does not learn is in great danger... Men of superior mind busy themselves first getting at the root of things; when they succeed, the right course is open to them.
Only through education does one come to be dissatisfied with his own knowledge, and only through teaching others does one come to realize the uncomfortable inadequacy of his knowledge. Being dissatisfied with his own knowledge, one then realizes that the trouble lies with himself, and realizing the uncomfortable inadequacy of his knowledge one then feels stimulated to improve himself. Therefore, it is said, "the processes of teaching and learning stimulate one another."
The Master said, At fifteen I set my heart upon learning. At thirty, I had planted my feet firm upon the ground. At forty, I no longer suffered from perplexities. At fifty, I knew what were the biddings of Heaven. At sixty, I heard them with docile ear. At seventy, I could follow the dictates of my own heart; for what I desired no longer overstepped the boundaries of righ.
If a man is respectful he will not be treated with insolence. If he is tolerant he will win the multitude. If he is trustworthy in his word his fellow man will entrust him with responsibility. If he is quick he will achieve results. if he is generous he will be good enough to be put in a position over his fellow men.
When things are investigated, then true knowledge is achieved; when true knowledge is achieved, then the will becomes sincere; when the will is sincere, then the heart is set right ; when the heart is set right, then the personal life is cultivated; when the personal life is cultivated, then the family life is regulated; when the family life is regulated, then the national life is orderly; and when the national life is orderly, then there is peace in this world.
Friendship with the upright, with the truthful and with the well informed is beneficial. Friendship with those who flatter, with those who are meek and who compromise with principles, and with those who talk cleverly is harmful.
When a person should be spoken with, and you don't speak with them, you lose them. When a person shouldn't be spoken with and you speak to them, you waste your breath. The wise do not lose people, nor do they waste their breath.
When the perfect order prevails, the world is like a home shared by all. Leaders are capable and virtuous. Everyone loves and respects their own parents and children as well as the parents and children of others. The old are cared for, adults have jobs, children are nourished and educated. There is a means of support for all those who are disabled or find themselves alone in the world. Everyone has an appropriate role to play in the family and society. Devotion to public duty leaves no place for idleness. Scheming for ill gain is unknown. Sharing displaces selfishness and materialism.
If the people are governed by laws and punishment is used to maintain order, they will try to avoid the punishment but have no sense of shame. If they are governed by virtue and rules of propriety are used to maintain order, they will have a sense of shame and will become good as well.
From the loving example of one family a whole State may become loving, and from its courtesies, courteous; while from the ambition and perverseness of the one man the whole State may be thrown into rebellious disorder. Such is the nature of influence.
The Master said, The case is like that of someone raising a mound. If he stops working, the fact that it perhaps needed only one more basketful makes no difference; I stay where I am. Whereas even if he has not got beyond leveling the ground, but is still at work, the fact that he has only tilted one basketful of earth makes no difference. I go to help him.
The Master said, âWhat a worthy man was Yan Hui! Living in a narrow alley, subsisting upon meager bits of rice and waterâother people could not have borne such hardship, and yet it never spoiled Huiâs joy. What a worthy man was Hui!â (Analects 6.11)
If a man remembers what is right at the sign of profit, is ready to lay down his life in the face of danger, and does not forget sentiments he has repeated all his life when he has been in straitened circumstances for a long time, he may be said to be a complete man.
If language is not correct, then what is said is not what is meant; if what is said is not what is meant, then what must be done remains undone; if this remains undone, morals and art will deteriorate; if justice goes astray, the people will stand about in helpless confusion. Hence there must be no arbitrariness in what is said. This matters above everything.
I know how the birds fly, how the fishes swim, how animals run. But there is the Dragon. I cannot tell how it mounts on the winds through the clouds and flies through heaven. Today I have seen the Dragon.
Guide them by edicts, keep them in line with punishments, and the common people will stay out of trouble but will have no sense of shame. Guide them by virtue, keep them in line with the rites, and they will, besides having a sense of shame, reform themselves.
All things are nourished together without their injuring one another. The courses of the seasons, and of the sun and moon, are pursued without any collision among them. The smaller energies are like river currents; the greater energies are seen in mighty transformations. It is this which makes heaven and earth so great.
To be fond of learning is to draw close to wisdom. To practice with vigor is to draw close to benevolence. To know the sense of shame is to draw close to courage. He who knows these three things knows how to cultivate his own character. Knowing how to cultivate his own character, he knows how to govern other men. Knowing how to govern other men, he knows how to govern the world, its states, and its families.
In ancient times, those who wished to illuminate the world with virtue first brought order to their nations. Wishing to order well their nations, they first harmonized their families. Wishing to harmonize their families, they first cultivated themselves. Wishing to cultivate themselves, they first rectified their minds. Those who wished to rectify their minds first made their intentions sincere.
Be faithful and true of word; let thy walk be plain and lowly: thou wilt get on, though in savage land. If thy words be not faithful and true, thy walk plain and lowly, wilt thou get on, though in thine own home? Standing, see these words ranged before thee; driving, see them written upon the yoke. Then thou wilt get on.
The wise men of antiquity, when they wished to make the whole world peaceful and happy, first put their own States into proper order. Before putting their States into proper order, they regulated their own families. Before regulating their families, they regulated themselves. Before regulating themselves, they tried to be sincere in their thoughts. Before being sincere in their thoughts, they tried to see things exactly as they really were.
Charity is that rational and constant affection which makes us sacrifice ourselves to the human race, as if we were united with it, so as to form one individual, partaking equally in its adversity and prosperity.
There are 3 elements essential in the matters of the State, Food, Military equipment, and Confidence of the people in the ruler. Of these 3, Military Equipment is the least important, Food being the 2nd important, and Confidence of the people being the MOST important. All men rather die of starvation than in war, but nevertheless all men do die of old age. Lacking in Confidence from the people, a state cannot survive.
Study the past if you would define the future. I am not one who was born in the possession of knowledge; I am one who is fond of antiquity, and earnest in seeking it there. Learning without thought is labor lost; thought without learning is perilous.
The gentleman holds justice to be of highest importance. If a gentleman has courage but neglects justice, he becomes insurgent. If an inferior man has courage but neglects justice, he becomes a thief.
There are some with whom we may study in common, but we shall find them unable to go along with us to principles. Perhaps we may go on with them to principles, but we shall find them unable to get established in those along with us. Or if we may get so established along with them, we shall find them unable to weigh occurring events along with us.
Lead the people with administrative injunctions and put them in their place with penal law, and they will avoid punishments but will be without a sense of shame. Lead them with excellence and put them in their place through roles and ritual practices, and in addition to developing a sense of shame, they will order themselves harmoniously
Though Confucius served the Duke of Lu, a Chinese state, he made many enemies with the nobles of the land. His views antagonized the powerful nobles, who wanted the Duke to be a puppet in their hands. Confucius was exiled from the State of Lu for more than two decades. He lived in the countryside, spreading his teachings.
A youth is to be regarded with respect. How do we know that his future will not be equal to our present? If he reach the age of forty or fifty, and has not made himself heard of, then indeed he will not be worth being regarded with respect.
The gods should certainly be revered, but kept at a distance... . The way is not beyond man; he who creates a way outside of man cannot make it a true way. A good man is content with changing man, and that is enough for him.
Kong Qiu, or Master Kong as he was known, did not live to see his days of glory. During his lifetime, his views were received with scorn. But that was about two thousand five hundred years ago. A handful of his dedicated followers passed on Confucius' teachings to future generations. After Confucius' death, his followers published his teachings in the book, The Analects of Confucius.
The superior man does not mind being in office; all he minds about is whether he has qualities that entitle him to office. He does not mind failing to get recognition; he is too busy doing the things that entitle him to recognition.
The small man thinks that small acts of goodness are of no benefit, and does not do them; and that small deeds of evil do no harm, and does not refrain from them. Hence, his wickedness becomes so great that it cannot be concealed, and his guilt so great that it cannot be pardoned.
In a hamlet of ten households, there are bound to be those who are my equal in doing their best for others and in being trustworthy in what they say, but they are unlikely to be as eager to learn as I am.
In dealing with the dead, if we treat them as if they were entirely dead, that would show a want of affection and should not be done; or, if we treat them as if they were entirely alive, that would show a want of wisdom and should not be done.
A gentleman considers justice to be essential in everything. He practices it according to the principles of propriety. He brings it forth in modesty and faithfully completes it. This is indeed a gentleman.
The administration of government lies in getting proper men. Such men are to be got by means of the ruler's own character. That character is to be cultivated by his treading in the ways of duty. And the treading those ways of duty is to be cultivated by the cherishing of benevolence.
The way of the superior man may be compared to what takes place in traveling, when to go to a distance we must first traverse the space that is near, and in ascending a height, when we must begin from the lower ground.
The Master said, âWealth and honor are things that all people desire, and yet unless they are acquired in the proper way I will not abide them. Poverty and disgrace are things that all people hate, and yet unless they are avoided in the proper way I will not despise them. âIf the gentleman abandons ren, how can he be worthy of that name? The gentleman does not violate ren even for the amount of time required to eat a meal. Even in times of urgency or distress, he does not depart from it.â (Analects 4.5)
As in the case of making a mound, if, before the very last basketful, I stop, then I shall have stopped. As in the case of leveling the ground, if, though tipping only one basketful, I am going forward, then I shall be making progress.
A country of a thousand war-chariots cannot be administered unless the ruler attends strictly to business, punctually observes his promises, is economical in expenditure, loves the people, and uses the labor of the peasantry only at the proper times of year.
The superior person tries to promote music as a means to the perfection of human culture. When such music prevails, and people's minds are led towards the right ideals and aspirations, we may see the appearance of a great nation.
When a man comes to me, I accept him at his best, not at his worst. Why make so much ado? When a man washes his hands before paying a visit, and you receive him in that clean state, you do not thereby stand surety for his always having been clean in the past.
The Master said, âTo study, and then in a timely fashion to practice what you have learnedâis this not satisfying? To have companions arrive from afarâis this not a joy? To remain unrecognized by others and yet remain free of resentmentâis this not the mark of the gentleman?â (Analects 1.1)
When abroad, behaveto everyone as if interviewing an honored guest; in directing the people, act as if you were assisting at a great sacrafice; DO NOT DO TO OTHERS AS YOU WOULD NOT LIKE DONE TO YOURSELF: so there will be no murmuring against you in the country, and none in the family; your public life will arouse no ill-will nor your private life any resentment.
If the search for riches were sure to be successful, though I should become a groom with a whip in my hand to get them, I will do so. As the search may not be successful, I will follow after that which I love.
How great is the path proper to the Sage! Like overflowing water, it sends forth and nourishes all things, and rises up to the height of heaven. All-complete is its greatness! It embraces the three hundred rules of ceremony, and the three thousand rules of demeanor. It waits for the proper man, and then it is trodden. Hence it is said, 'Only by perfect virtue can the perfect path, in all its courses, be made a fact.'
If a man withdraws his mind from the love of beauty, and applies it as sincerely to the love of the virtuous; if, in serving his parents, he can exert his utmost strength; if, in serving his prince, he can devote his life; if in his intercourse with his friends, his words are sincere - although men say that he has not learned, I will certainly say that he has.
The Master said of Gong Yechang, âHe is marriageable. Although he was once imprisoned and branded as a criminal, he was in fact innocent of any crime.â The Master gave him his daughter in marriage. (Analects 5.1)
Behave when away from home as though you were in the presence of an honored guest. Employ the people as though you were assisting at an important sacrifice. Do not do to others what you would not like yourself. Then there will be no feelings of opposition to you, whether it is the affairs of a state that you are handling or the affairs of a family.
Tsze-Kung asked, âIs there one word with which to act in accordance throughout a lifetime?â The Master said, âIs not reciprocity such a word? What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others.
A man should demand much from himself, but little from others. When you meet a man of worth, think how you may attain to his excellence. When you meet an unworthy one, then look within and examine yourself.