Front Page Titles (by Subject) BOOK XI. * - The Chinese Classics: Vol. 1. The Life and Teachings of Confucius (Analects, Great Learning, Doctrine of the Mean)
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BOOK XI. * - Confucius, The Chinese Classics: Vol. 1. The Life and Teachings of Confucius (Analects, Great Learning, Doctrine of the Mean) 
The Chinese Classics: Translated into English with Preliminary Essays and Explanatory Notes by James Legge. Vol. 1. The Life and Teachings of Confucius. Second Edition (London: N. Trübner, 1869).
Part of: The Chinese Classics
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ChapterI.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 these things, I follow the men of former times.”
II.1. The Master said, “Of those who were with me in Ch‘in and Ts‘ae, there are none to be found to enter my door.”
2. Distinguished for their virtuous principles and practice, there were Yen Yuen, Min Tsze-k‘een, Yen Pihnew, and Chung-kung; for their ability in speech, Tsae Wo and Tsze-kung; for their administrative talents, Yen Yew and Ke Loo; for their literary acquirements, Tsze-yew and Tsze-hea.
III. The Master said, “Hwuy gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight.”
IV. The Master said, “Filial indeed is Min Tsze-k‘een! Other people say nothing of him different from the report of his parents and brothers.”
V. Nan Yung was frequently repeating the lines about a white sceptre-stone. Confucius gave him the daughter of his elder brother to wife.
VI. Ke K‘ang asked which of the disciples loved to learn. Confucius replied to him, “There was Yen Hwuy; 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.”
VII.1. When Yen Yuen died, Yen Loo begged the carriage of the Master to 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 Le; when he died, he had a coffin, but no outer shell. I would not walk on foot to get a shell for him, because, following after the great officers, it was not proper that I should walk on foot.”
VIII. When Yen Yuen died, the Master said, “Alas! Heaven is destroying me! Heaven is destroying me!”
IX.1. When Yen Yuen died, the Master bewailed him exceedingly, and the disciples who were with him said, “Sir, 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?”
X.1. When Yen Yuen 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, “Hwuy 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.”
XI. Ke Loo 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?” Ke Loo added, “I venture to ask about death?” He was answered, “While you do not know life, how can you know about death?”
XII.1. The disciple Min was standing by his side, looking bland and precise; Tsze-loo, looking bold and soldierly; Yen Yew and Tsze-kung, with a free and straight-forward manner. The Master was pleased.
2. He said, “Yew there!—he will not die a natural death.”
XIII.1. Some parties in Loo were going to take down and rebuild the Long treasury.
2. Min Tsze-k‘een 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.”
XIV.1. The Master said, “What has the harpsichord of Yew to do in my door?”
2. The other disciples began not to respect Tsze-loo. The Master said, “Yew has ascended to the hall, though he has not yet passed into the inner apartments.”
XV.1. Tsze-kung asked which of the two, Sze or Shang, was the superior. The Master said, “Sze goes beyond the due Mean, and Shang does not come up to it.”
2. “Then,” said Tsze-kung, “the superiority is with Sze, I suppose.”
3. The Master said, “To go beyond is as wrong as to fall short.”
XVI.1. The head of the Ke family was richer than the duke of Chow had been, and yet K‘ew 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.”
XVII.1. Ch‘ae is simple.
2. Sin is dull.
3. Sze is specious.
4. Yew is coarse.
XVIII.1. The Master said, “There is Hwuy! He has nearly attained to perfect virtue. He is often in want.”
2. “Tsze does not acquiesce in the appointments of Heaven, and his goods are increased by him. Yet his judgments are often correct.”
XIX. 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.”
XX. 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?”
XXI.1. Tsze-loo 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?” Yen Yew 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-se Hwa said, “Yew asked whether he should carry immediately into practice what he heard, and you said, ‘There are your father and elder brothers to be consulted.’ K‘ew 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, “K‘ew is retiring and slow; therefore I urged him forward. Yew has more than his own share of energy; therefore I kept him back.”
XXII. The Master was put in fear in K‘wang and Yen Yuen fell behind. The Master, on his rejoining him, said, “I thought you had died.” Hwuy replied, “While you were alive, how should I presume to die?”
XXIII.1. Ke Tsze-jen asked whether Chung-yew and Yen K‘ew could be called great ministers.
2. The Master said, “I thought you would ask about some extraordinary individuals, and you only ask about Yew and K‘ew!
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 Yew and K‘ew, they may be called ordinary ministers.”
5. Tsze-jen 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.”
XXIV.1. Tsze-loo got Tsze-kaou appointed governor of Pe.
2. The Master said, “You are injuring a man’s son.”
3. Tsze-loo 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.”
XXV.1. Tsze-loo, Tsăng Sih, Yen Yew, and Kung-se Hwa, were sitting by the Master.
2. He said to them, though I am a day or so older than you, don’t think of that.
3. “From day to day you are saying, ‘We are not known.’ If some prince were to know you, what would you do?”
4. Tsze-loo 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 recognize the rules of righteous conduct.” The Master smiled at him.
5.Turning to Yen Yew, he said, “K‘ew, what are your wishes?” K‘ew replied, “Suppose a state of sixty or seventy le 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-se 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 emperor, 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 T‘săng Sih, “Teen, what are your wishes?” Teen, pausing as he was playing on his harpsichord, 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.” Teen 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 E, enjoy the breeze among the rain-altars, and return home singing.” The Master heaved a sigh and said, “I give my approval to Teen.”
8. The three others having gone out, Tsăng Sih 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.Teen pursued, “Master, why did you smile at Yew?”
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.Teen again said, “But was it not a state which K‘ew proposed for himself?” The reply was, “Yes; did you ever see a territory of sixty or seventy le, or one of fifty or sixty, which was not a state?”
12.Once more Teen 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 audiences with the emperor? If Ch‘ih were to be a small assistant in these services, who could be a great one?”
[* ]Heading and subjects of this Book.—“The former men—No. XI.” With this Book there commences the second part of the Analects, commonly called the Hea Lun. There is, however, no classical authority for this division. It contains twenty-five chapters, treating mostly of various disciples of the Master, and deciding the point of their worthiness. Min Tsze-K‘een appears in it four times, and on this account some attribute the compilation of it to his disciples. There are indications in the style of a peculiar hand.
[1. ]Confucius’ preference of the simpler ways of former times.
[2. ]Confucius’ regretful memory of his disciples’ fidelity. Characteristics of ten of the disciples. 1. This utterance must have been made towards the close of Confucius’ life, when many of his disciples had been removed by death, or separated from him by other causes. In his sixty-second year or thereabouts, as the accounts go, he was passing, in his wanderings from Ch‘m to Ts‘ae, when the officers of Ch‘in, afraid that he would go on into Tsoo, endeavoured to stop his course, and for several days he and the disciples with him were cut off from food. Both Ch‘m and Ts‘ae were in the present province of Ho-nan, and are referred to the departments of Ch‘m-Chow and Joo-ning. 2. This paragraph is to be taken as a note by the compilers of the book, enumerating the principal followers of Confucius on the occasion referred to, with their distinguishing qualities. They are arranged in four classes, and, amounting to ten, are known as the ten wise ones. The “four classes” and “ten wise ones” are often mentioned in connection with the sage’s school.
[3. ]Hwuy’s silent reception of the Master’s teachings. A teacher is sometimes helped by the doubts and questions of learners, which lead him to explain himself more fully. Compare III. viii. 3.
[4. ]The filial piety of Min Tsze-k‘een.
[5. ]Confucius’ approbation of Nan Yung. Nan Yung, see V. i. For the lines, see the She-king, Pt III. Bk III. ii. 5. They are—“A flaw in a white sceptre-stone may be ground away; but for a flaw in speech, nothing can be done.” In his repeating of these lines, we have, perhaps, the ground-virtue of the character for which Yung is commended in V. i.
[6. ]How Hwuy loved to learn. See VI. ii., where the same question is put by the Duke Gae, and the same answer is returned, only in a more extended form.
[7. ]How Confucius would not sell his carriage to buy a shell for Yen Yuen. 1. In the Family Sayings and in the History of Records, Hwuy’s death is represented as taking place before the death of Le. It is difficult to understand how such a view could ever have been adopted, if the authors were acquainted with this chapter. 2. “I follow in rear of the great officers.” This is said to be an expression of humility. Confucius, retired from office, might still present himself at court, in the robes of his former dignity, and would still be consulted on emergencies. He would no doubt have a foremost place on such occasions.
[8. ]Confucius felt Hwuy’s death as if it had been his own. The old interpreters make this simply the exclamation of bitter sorrow. The modern, perhaps correctly, make the chief ingredient to be grief that the man was gone to whom he looked most for the transmission of his doctrines.
[9. ]Confucius vindicates his great grief for the death of Hwuy.
[10. ]Confucius’ dissatisfaction with the grand way in which Hwuy was buried. The old interpreters take the disciples here as being the disciples of Yen Yuen. This is not natural, and yet we can hardly understand how the disciples of Confucius would act so directly contrary to his express wishes. Confucius objected to a grand funeral as inconsistent with the poverty of the family (see chapter vii.).
[11. ]Confucius avoids answering questions about serving spirits, and about death. Two views of the replies here are found in commentators. The older ones say—“Confucius put off Ke Loo, and gave him no answer, because spirits and death are obscure, and unprofitable subjects to talk about”. With this some modern writers agree, but others, and the majority, say—“Confucius answered the disciple protoundly, and showed him how he should prosecute his inquiries in the proper order. The service of the dead must be in the same spirit as the service of the living. Obedience and sacrifice are equally the expression of the filial heart. Death is only the natural termination of life. We are born with certain gifts and principles, which carry us on to the end of our course.” This is ingenious refining; but, after all, Confucius avoids answering the important questions proposed to him.
[12. ]Confucius happy with his disciples about him. He warns Tsze-loo.
[13. ]Wise advice of Min Sun against useless expenditure.
[14. ]Confucius’ admonition and defence of Tsze-loo. 1. The form of the harpsichord seems to come nearer to that of the shih than any other of our instruments. The shih is a kindred instrument with the k‘in, commonly called “the scholar’s lute.” See the Chinese Repository, vol. VIII. p. 38. The music made by Yew was more martial in its air than befitted the peace-inculcating school of the sage. 2. This contains a defence of Yew, and an illustration of his real attainments.
[15. ]Comparison of Sze and Shang. Excess and defect equally wrong.
[16. ]Confucius’ indignation at the support of usurpation and extortion by one of his disciples. “Beat the drum and assail him;” this refers to the practice of executing criminals in the market-place, and by beat of drum collecting the people to hear their crimes. Commentators, however, say that the Master only required the disciples here to tell K‘ew of his faults and recover him.
[17. ]Characters of the four disciples—Ch‘ae, Sin, Sze, and Yew. It is supposed “The Master said,” is missing from the beginning of this chapter. Admitting this, the sentences are to be translated in the present tense, and not in the past, which would be required, if the chapter were simply the record of the compilers. Ch‘ae, by surname Kaou, and styled Tsze-Kaou, has his tablet now the fifth, west, in the outer court of the temples. He was small and ugly, but distinguished for his sincerity, filial piety, and justice. Such was the conviction of his impartial justice, that in a time of peril he was saved by a man whom he had formerly punished with cutting off his feet.
[18. ]Hwuy and Tsze contrasted. Hwuy’s being brought often to this state is mentioned merely as an additional circumstance about him, intended to show that he was happy in his deep poverty. Ho An preserves the comment of some one, which is worth giving here and according to which, “empty-hearted,” free from all vanities and ambitions, was the formative element of Hwuy’s character.
[19. ]The good man. Compare VII. xxv. By a “good man” Choo He understands “one of fine natural capacity, but who has not learned.” Such a man will in many things be a law to himself, and needs not to follow in the wake of others, but after all his progress will be limited. The text is rather enigmatical.
[20. ]We may not hastily judge a man to be good from his discourse.
[21. ]An instance in Tsze-loo and Yen Yew of how Confucius dealt with his disciples according to their characters.
[22. ]Yen Yuen’s attachment to Confucius, and confidence in his mission. See IX. v. If Hwuy’s answer was anything more than pleasantry, we must pronounce it foolish. The commentators, however, expand it thus:—“I knew that you would not perish in this danger, and therefore I would not rashly expose my own life, but preserved it rather, that I might continue to enjoy the benefit of your instructions.” If we inquire how Hwuy knew that Confucius would not perish, we are informed that he shared his master’s assurance that he had a divine mission. See VII. xxii., IX. v.
[23. ]A great minister. Chung-yew and Yen K‘ew only ordinary ministers. The paraphrasts sum up the contents thus—“Confucius represses the boasting of Ke Tsze-jen, and indicates an acquaintance with his traitorous purposes.” This Ke Tsze-jen was a younger brother of Ke Hwan, who was the head of the Ke family spoken of in III. i. Having an ambitious purpose on the dukedom of Loo, he was increasing his officers, and having got the two disciples to enter his service, he boastingly speaks to Confucius about them.
[24. ]How preliminary study is necessary to the exercise of government:—a reproof of Tsze-loo. 1. Pe,—see VI. vii. This commandantship is probably what Min Sun there refused. Tsze-loo had entered into the service of the Ke family (see last chapter), and recommended Tsze-kaou as likely to keep the turbulent Pe in order, thereby withdrawing him from his studies with the Master. 2. By denominating Tsze-kaou “a man’s son,” Confucius intimates, I suppose, that the father was injured as well. His son ought not to be so dealt with. 3. The absurd defence of Tsze-loo. It is to this effect:—“The whole duty of man is in treating other men right, and rendering what is due to spiritual beings, and it may be learned practically without the study you require.” “On this account,”—with reference to Tsze-loo’s reply.
[25. ]The aims of Tsze-loo, Tsang Sih, Yen Yew, and Kung-se Hwa; and Confucius’ remarks about them. Compare V. vii. and xxv. 1. The disciples mentioned here are all familiar to us excepting Tsăng Sih. He was the father of the more celebrated Tsăng Sin, and himself by name Teen. The four are mentioned in the order of their age, and Teen would have answered immediately after Tsze-loo, but that Confucius passed him by, as he was occupied with his harpsichord. It does not appear whether Teen, even at the last, understood why Confucius had laughed at Tsze-loo, and not at the others. “It was not,” say the commentators, “because Tsze-loo was extravagant in his aims. They were all thinking of great things, yet not greater than they were able for. Tsze-loo’s fault was in the levity with which he had proclaimed his wishes. That was his offence against propriety.”