Tsze-lu asked what constituted a COMPLETE man. The Master said,
"Suppose a man with the knowledge of Tsang Wu-chung, the freedom
from covetousness of Kung-ch'o, the bravery of Chwang of Pien, and the
varied talents of Zan Ch'iu; add to these the accomplishments of the
rules of propriety and music;-such a one might be reckoned a
He then added, "But what is the necessity for a complete man of
the present day to have all these things? The man, who in the 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
The Master asked Kung-ming Chia about Kung-shu Wan, saying, "Is it
true that your master speaks not, laughs not, and takes not?"
Kung-ming Chia replied, "This has arisen from the reporters going
beyond the truth.-My master speaks when it is the time to speak, and
so men do not get tired of his speaking. He laughs when there is
occasion to be joyful, and so men do not get tired of his laughing. He
takes when it is consistent with righteousness to do so, and so men do
not get tired of his taking." The Master said, "So! But is it so
The Master said, "Tsang Wu-chung, keeping possession of Fang,
asked of the duke of Lu to appoint a successor to him in his family.
Although it may be said that he was not using force with his
sovereign, I believe he was."
The Master said, "The duke Wan of Tsin was crafty and not upright.
The duke Hwan of Ch'i was upright and not crafty."
Tsze-lu said, "The Duke Hwan caused his brother Chiu to be killed,
when Shao Hu died, with his master, but Kwan Chung did not die. May
not I say that he was wanting in virtue?"
The Master said, "The Duke Hwan assembled all the princes
together, and that not with weapons of war and chariots:-it was all
through the influence of Kwan Chung. Whose beneficence was like his?
Whose beneficence was like his?"
Tsze-kung said, "Kwan Chung, I apprehend was wanting in virtue. When
the Duke Hwan caused his brother Chiu to be killed, Kwan Chung was not
able to die with him. Moreover, he became prime minister to Hwan."
The Master said, "Kwan Chung acted as prime minister to the Duke
Hwan made him leader of all the princes, and united and rectified
the whole kingdom. Down to the present day, the people enjoy the gifts
which he conferred. But for Kwan Chung, we should now be wearing our
hair unbound, and the lappets of our coats buttoning on the left side.
"Will you require from him the small fidelity of common men and
common women, who would commit suicide in a stream or ditch, no one
knowing anything about them?"
The great officer, Hsien, who had been family minister to Kung-shu
Wan, ascended to the prince's court in company with Wan.
The Master, having heard of it, said, "He deserved to be
considered WAN (the accomplished)."
The Master was speaking about the unprincipled course of the duke
Ling of Weil when Ch'i K'ang said, "Since he is of such a character,
how is it he does not lose his state?"
Confucius said, "The Chung-shu Yu has the superintendence of his
guests and of strangers; the litanist, T'o, has the management of
his ancestral temple; and Wang-sun Chia has the direction of the
army and forces:-with such officers as these, how should he lose his
The Master said, "He who speaks without modesty will find it
difficult to make his words good."
Chan Ch'ang murdered the Duke Chien of Ch'i.
Confucius bathed, went to court and informed the Duke Ai, saying,
"Chan Hang has slain his sovereign. I beg that you will undertake to
The duke said, "Inform the chiefs of the three families of it."
Confucius retired, and said, "Following in the rear of the great
officers, I did not dare not to represent such a matter, and my prince
says, "Inform the chiefs of the three families of it."
He went to the chiefs, and informed them, but they would not act.
Confucius then said, "Following in the rear of the great officers, I
did not dare not to represent such a matter."
Tsze-lu asked how a ruler should be served. The Master said, "Do not
impose on him, and, moreover, withstand him to his face."
The Master said, "The progress of the superior man is upwards; the
progress of the mean man is downwards."
The Master said, "In ancient times, men learned with a view to their
own improvement. Nowadays, men learn with a view to the approbation of
Chu Po-yu sent a messenger with friendly inquiries to Confucius.
Confucius sat with him, and questioned him. "What," said he! "is
your master engaged in?" The messenger replied, "My master is
anxious to make his faults few, but he has not yet succeeded." He then
went out, and the Master said, "A messenger indeed! A messenger
The Master said, "He who is not in any particular office has nothing
to do with plans for the administration of its duties."
The philosopher Tsang said, "The superior man, in his thoughts, does
not go out of his place."
The Master said, "The superior man is modest in his speech, but
exceeds in his actions."
The Master said, "The way of the superior man is threefold, but I am
not equal to it. Virtuous, he is free from anxieties; wise, he is free
from perplexities; bold, he is free from fear.
Tsze-kung said, "Master, that is what you yourself say."
Tsze-kung was in the habit of comparing men together. The Master
said, "Tsze must have reached a high pitch of excellence! Now, I
have not leisure for this."
The Master said, "I will not be concerned at men's not knowing me; I
will be concerned at my own want of ability."
The Master said, "He who does not anticipate attempts to deceive
him, nor think beforehand of his not being believed, and yet
apprehends these things readily when they occur;-is he not a man of
Wei-shang Mau said to Confucius, "Ch'iu, how is it that you keep
roosting about? Is it not that you are an insinuating talker?
Confucius said, "I do not dare to play the part of such a talker,
but I hate obstinacy."
The Master said, "A horse is called a ch'i, not because of its
strength, but because of its other good qualities."
Some one said, "What do you say concerning the principle that injury
should be recompensed with kindness?"
The Master said, "With what then will you recompense kindness?"
"Recompense injury with justice, and recompense kindness with
The Master said, "Alas! there is no one that knows me."
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