Confucius not self-willed, and yet no glib-tongued talker:-- defence of himself from the charge of an aged reprover.
1. Wei-shang Mâu said to Confucius, "Ch'iû, 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."
Virtue, and not strength, the fit subject of praise.
The Master said, "A horse is called a ch'î, not because of its strength, but because of its other good qualities."
Good is not to be returned for evil; evil to be met simply with justice.
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."
Confucius, lamenting that men did not know him, rests in the thought that Heaven knew him.
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!"
How Confucius rested, as to the progress of his doctrines, on the ordering of Heaven:-- on occassion of Tsze-lû's being slandered.
1. The Kung-po Liâo, having slandered Tsze-lû to Chî-sun, Tsze-fû Ching-po informed Confucius of it, saying, "Our master is certainly being led astray by the Kung-po Liâo, but I have still power enough left to cut Liâo 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 Liâo do where such ordering is concerned?"
Different causes of why men of worth withdraw from public life, and different extents to which they so withdraw themselves.
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The number of men of worth who has withdrawn from public life in Confucius's time.
The Master said, "Those who have done this are seven men."
Condemnation of Confucius's course in seeking to be employed, by one who had withdrawn from public life.
Tsze-lû happening to pass the night in Shih-man, the gatekeeper said to him, "Whom do you come from?" Tsze-lû 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."
The judgement of a retired worthy on Confucius's course, and remark of Confucius thereon.
1. The Master was playing, one day, on a musical stone in Wei, when a man, carrying a straw basket, passed 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!"
How government was caried on during the three years of silent mourning by the sovereign.
1. Tsze-chang said, "What is meant when the Shû says that Kâo-tsung, while observing the usual imperial mourning, was for three years without speaking?"
2. The Master said, "Why must Kâo-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."
How a love of the rules of propriety in rulers facilitates government.
The Master said, "When rulers love to observe the rules of propriety, the people respond readily to the calls on them for service."
Reverent self-cultivation the distinguishing characteristic of the Chün-tsze.
Tsze-lû asked what constituted the superior man. The Master said, "The cultivation of himself in reverential carefulness." "And is this all?" said Tsze-lû. "He cultivates himself so as to give rest to others," was the reply. "And is this all?" again asked Tsze-lû. 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 Yâo and Shun were still solicitous about this."
Confucius's conduct to an unmannerly old man of his acquaintance.
Yüan 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.
Confucius's employment of a forward youth.
1. A youth of the village of Ch'üeh 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."