THE ANALECTS (Sayings)
1.   Tsze-chang said, "The scholar, trained for public
duty, seeing threatening danger, is prepared to sacrifice his
life. When the opportunity of gain is presented to him, he thinks
of righteousness. In sacrificing, his thoughts are reverential.
In mourning, his thoughts are about the grief which he should
feel. Such a man commands our approbation indeed
2.   Tsze-chang said, "When a man holds fast to virtue, but
without seeking to enlarge it, and believes in right principles,
but without firm sincerity, what account can be made of his
existence or non-existence?"
3.   The disciples of Tsze-hsia asked Tsze-chang about the
principles that should characterize mutual intercourse. Tsze-chang
asked, "What does Tsze-hsia say on the subject?" They
replied, "Tsze-hsia says: 'Associate with those who can
advantage you. Put away from you those who cannot do so.'"
Tsze-chang observed, "This is different from what I have
learned. The superior man honors the talented and virtuous, and
bears with all. He praises the good, and pities the incompetent.
Am I possessed of great talents and virtue? —who is there among
men whom I will not bear with? Am I devoid of talents and virtue?
—men will put me away from them. What have we to do with the
putting away of others?"
4.   Tsze-hsia said, "Even in inferior studies and
employments there is something worth being looked at; but if it
be attempted to carry them out to what is remote, there is a
danger of their proving inapplicable. Therefore, the superior man
does not practice them."
5.   Tsze-hsia said, "He, who from day to day recognizes
what he has not yet, and from month to month does not forget what
he has attained to, may be said indeed to love to learn."
6.   Tsze-hsia said, "There are learning extensively, and
having a firm and sincere aim; inquiring with earnestness, and
reflecting with self-application: —virtue is in such a course."
7.   Tsze-hsia said, "Craftsmen have their shops to dwell
in, in order to accomplish their works. The superior man learns,
in order to reach to the utmost of his principles."
8.   Tsze-hsia said, "The mean man is sure to gloss his
9.   Tsze-hsia said, "The superior man undergoes three
changes. Looked at from a distance, he appears stern; when
approached, he is mild; when he is heard to speak, his language
is firm and decided."
10.   Tsze-hsia said, "The superior man, having obtained
their confidence, may then impose labors on his people. If he
have not gained their confidence, they will think that he is
oppressing them. Having obtained the confidence of his prince,
one may then remonstrate with him. If he have not gained his
confidence, the prince will think that he is vilifying him."
11.   Tsze-hsia said, "When a person does not transgress
the boundary line in the great virtues, he may pass and repass it
in the small virtues."
12.   Tsze-yu said, "The disciples and followers of Tsze-hsia,
in sprinkling and sweeping the ground, in answering and replying,
in advancing and receding, are sufficiently accomplished. But
these are only the branches of learning, and they are left
ignorant of what is essential. —How can they be acknowledged as
Tsze-hsia heard of the remark and said, "Alas! Yen Yu is
wrong. According to the way of the superior man in teaching, what
departments are there which he considers of prime importance, and
delivers? what are there which he considers of secondary
importance, and allows himself to be idle about? But as in the
case of plants, which are assorted according to their classes, so
he deals with his disciples. How can the way of a superior man be
such as to make fools of any of them? Is it not the sage alone,
who can unite in one the beginning and the consummation of
13.   Tsze-hsia said, "The officer, having discharged all
his duties, should devote his leisure to learning. The student,
having completed his learning, should apply himself to be an
14.   Tsze-hsia said, "Mourning, having been carried to the
utmost degree of grief, should stop with that."
15.   Tsze-hsia said, "My friend Chang can do things which
are hard to be done, but yet he is not perfectly virtuous."
16.   The philosopher Tsang said, "How imposing is the
manner of Chang! It is difficult along with him to practice
17.   The philosopher Tsang said, "I heard this from our
Master: 'Men may not have shown what is in them to the full
extent, and yet they will be found to do so, on the occasion of
mourning for their parents."
18.   The philosopher Tsang said, "I have heard this from
our Master: —'The filial piety of Mang Chwang, in other matters,
was what other men are competent to, but, as seen in his not
changing the ministers of his father, nor his father's mode of
government, it is difficult to be attained to.'"
19.   The chief of the Mang family having appointed Yang Fu to
be chief criminal judge, the latter consulted the philosopher
Tsang. Tsang said, "The rulers have failed in their duties,
and the people consequently have been disorganized for a long
time. When you have found out the truth of any accusation, be
grieved for and pity them, and do not feel joy at your own
20.   Tsze-kung said, "Chau's wickedness was not so great
as that name implies. Therefore, the superior man hates to dwell
in a low-lying situation, where all the evil of the world will
flow in upon him."
21.   Tsze-kung said, "The faults of the superior man are
like the eclipses of the sun and moon. He has his faults, and all
men see them; he changes again, and all men look up to him."
22.   Kung-sun Ch'ao of Wei asked Tszekung, saying. "From
whom did Chung-ni get his learning?"
Tsze-kung replied, "The doctrines of Wan and Wu have not
yet fallen to the ground. They are to be found among men. Men of
talents and virtue remember the greater principles of them, and
others, not possessing such talents and virtue, remember the
smaller. Thus, all possess the doctrines of Wan and Wu. Where
could our Master go that he should not have an opportunity of
learning them? And yet what necessity was there for his having a
23.   Shu-sun Wu-shu observed to the great officers in the
court, saying, "Tsze-kung is superior to Chung-ni."
Tsze-fu Ching-po reported the observation to Tsze-kung, who
said, "Let me use the comparison of a house and its
encompassing wall. My wall only reaches to the shoulders. One may
peep over it, and see whatever is valuable in the apartments.
"The wall of my Master is several fathoms high. If one do
not find the door and enter by it, he cannot see the ancestral
temple with its beauties, nor all the officers in their rich
"But I may assume that they are few who find the door.
Was not the observation of the chief only what might have been
24.   Shu-sun Wu-shu having spoken revilingly of Chung-ni, Tsze-kung
said, "It is of no use doing so. Chung-ni cannot be reviled.
The talents and virtue of other men are hillocks and mounds which
may be stepped over. Chung-ni is the sun or moon, which it is not
possible to step over. Although a man may wish to cut himself off
from the sage, what harm can he do to the sun or moon? He only
shows that he does not know his own capacity.
25.   Ch'an Tsze-ch' in, addressing Tsze-kung, said, "You
are too modest. How can Chung-ni be said to be superior to you?"
Tsze-kung said to him, "For one word a man is often
deemed to be wise, and for one word he is often deemed to be
foolish. We ought to be careful indeed in what we say.
"Our Master cannot be attained to, just in the same way
as the heavens cannot be gone up by the steps of a stair.
"Were our Master in the position of the ruler of a state
or the chief of a family, we should find verified the description
which has been given of a sage's rule: —he would plant the
people, and forthwith they would be established; he would lead
them on, and forthwith they would follow him; he would make them
happy, and forthwith multitudes would resort to his dominions; he
would stimulate them, and forthwith they would be harmonious.
While he lived, he would be glorious. When he died, he would be
bitterly lamented. How is it possible for him to be attained to?"