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HomeThe Analects of Confucius《论语·第十五章》卫灵公篇 - The Analects of Confucius

《论语·第十五章》卫灵公篇 – The Analects of Confucius

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卫灵公问陈于孔子,孔子对曰:“俎豆之事,则尝闻之矣;军旅之事,未之学也。”明日遂行。

Duke Ling of Wei asked Confucius about battle array, Confucius replied, “I know only something about ritual, but nothing about military affairs.” He left Wei the next day.

在陈绝粮,从者病莫能兴。子路愠见曰:“君子亦有穷乎?”子曰:“君子固穷,小人穷斯滥矣。”

Confucius was not supplied with food in the state of Chen, his followers became too weak to rise to their feet. Dissatified, Zi Lu came and said, “How can an intelligentleman fall in want?” The Master said, “An intelligentleman will do nothing wrong even if he is in want, while an uncultured man in want will break loose from all restraints.”

子曰:“赐也,女以予为多学而识之者与?”对曰:“然,非与?”曰:“非也,予一以贯之。”

The Master said to Zi Gong,“Do you think I am a man who knows many things and keeps them in memory?” Zi Gong said, “Yes, is it not so?” The Master said, “No, I know only one in many and many in one.”

子曰:“由,知德者鲜矣。”

The Master said to Zi Lu,“Few know what virtue is.”

子曰:“无为而治者其舜也与!夫何为哉?恭己正南面而已矣。”

Emperor Shun ruled by non-interference, said the Master. Was it not so? What did he do but occupy the imperial throne reverently?

子张问行,子曰:“言忠信,行笃敬,虽蛮貊之邦,行矣。言不忠信,行不笃敬,虽州里,行乎哉?立则见其参于前也,在舆则见其倚于衡也,夫然后行。”子张书诸绅。

When Zi Zhang asked about good behavior, the Master said,“Sincere in what you say and trustworthy in what you do, you would behave well even among uncivilized tribes. Insincere in word and untrustworthy in deed, could you behave well in your native village? Standing, you should see these words before your eyes. Sitting in the carriage, you should see them inscribed on the yoke. Then you can behave well.” Zi Zhang wrote these words on his sash.

子曰:“直哉史鱼!邦有道如矢,邦无道如矢。君子哉蘧伯玉!邦有道则仕,邦无道则可卷而怀之。”

How straightforward was the historian Yu, said the Master, who served as a straight arrow the state in good order or in disorder! What an intelligentleman was Qu Bo Yu who served as an official when the state was in good order, and who concealed himself and hid away when the state was in disorder!

子曰:“可与言而不与之言,失人;不可与言而与之言,失言。知者不失人亦不失言。”

Not to talk to a worthy man, said the Master, is to lose the man, and to talk to an unworthy man is to waste words. The wise will neither lose a man nor waste words.

子曰:“志士仁人无求生以害仁,有杀身以成仁。”

A wise good man, said the Master, will do no wrong to preserve his own life but sacrifice his life to do what is right.

子贡问为仁,子曰:“工欲善其事,必先利其器。居是邦也,事其大夫之贤者,友其士之仁者。”

Zi Gong asked how to render good service. The Master said,“A craftsman who wishes to do his work well must first sharpen his tools. You who serve in a state must act in agreement with its good officers and befriend its good intellectuals.”

颜渊问为邦,子曰:“行夏之时,乘殷之辂,服周之冕,乐则《韶》、《舞》;放郑声,远佞人。郑声淫,佞人殆。”

Yan Yuan asked how to serve in a state. The Master said,“Use the calendar of Xia, ride the carriage of Yin, wear the ceremonial dress of Zhou, play the music of Emperor Shun and dance to the tune of the Martial King. Reject the songs of Zheng which are licentious and keep away from flatterers who are dangerous.”

子曰:“人无远虑,必有近忧。”

If you have no long sight, said the Master, trouble will be near at hand.

子曰:“已矣乎!吾未见好德如好色者也。”

In vain, said the Master, have I looked for one who loves his duty more than beauty.

子曰:“臧文仲其窃位者与!知柳下惠之贤而不与立也。”

Was not Zang Wen Zhong, said the Master, a stealer of ranks? He knew Liu Xia Hui gifted but did not give the rank due to him.

子曰:“躬自厚而薄责于人,则远怨矣。”

Severe with oneself and lenient with others, said the Master, one will be far from their complaint.

子曰:“不曰‘如之何、如之何’者,吾末如之何也已矣。”

I do not know what to do, said the Master, with a man who never says, “What to do? What to do?”

子曰:“群居终日,言不及义,好行小慧,难矣哉!”

It is difficult, said the Master, to deal with those who gather together all day long without saying what is right but try to show their tact in trifling matters.

子曰:“君子义以为质,礼以行之,孙以出之,信以成之。君子哉!”

An intelligentleman, said the Master, thinks it his duty to do what is right, carries it out according to the rules of propriety, speaks with modesty and accomplishes it faithfully. Such is an intelligentleman.

子曰:“君子病无能焉,不病人之不己知也。”

An intelligentleman, said the Master, regrets that he is incapable, and not that he is unknown.

子曰:“君子求诸己,小人求诸人。”

An intelligentleman, said the Master, relies on himself while an uncultured man relies on others.

子曰:“君子不以言举人,不以人废言。”

An intelligentleman, said the Master, will not recommend anyone simply because of his good words, nor reject the good words of anyone.

子贡问曰:“有一言而可以终身行之者乎?”子曰:“其恕乎!己所不欲,勿施于人。”

Zi Gong asked whether there was a word practicable all the life long. The Master said, “Perhaps‘forbearance’ is the word. Do not do to others what you would not have others do to you.”

子曰:“吾之于人也,谁毁谁誉?如有所誉者,其有所试矣。斯民也,三代之所以直道而行也。”

Of those people I have dealt with, said the Master, whom have I praised or blamed? If I have praised someone, I must have tested him. Such is the straightforward way how people were dealt with during the three ancient dynasties.

子曰:“吾犹及史之阙文也,有马者借人乘之,今亡矣夫!”

In my early days, said the Master, I had seen historian leave a blank in his text, and a horseman leave his horse for another to ride. But now there is none like them.

子曰:“巧言乱德,小不忍,则乱大谋。”

Sweet words, said the Master, may sour the deeds. Impatience in minor matter may cause failure in main matter.

子曰:“众恶之,必察焉;众好之,必察焉。”

If a man is disliked by all, said the Master, inquiry must be made. If a man is liked by all, inquiry must also be made.

子曰:“人能弘道,非道弘人。”

It is man, said the Master, that can amplify laws, but laws cannot amplify man.

子曰:“过而不改,是谓过矣。”

Not to mend a fault, said the Master, is to make a fault.

子曰:“吾尝终日不食、终夜不寝以思,无益,不如学也。”

Once, said the Master, I spent a whole day and a whole night in thinking, without eating and sleeping. I got no result and found it better to learn.

子曰:“君子谋道不谋食。耕也馁在其中矣,学也禄在其中矣。君子忧道不忧贫。”

An intelligentleman, said the Master, seeks after truth instead of food. Ploughing, he will not worry about hunger; learning, he may win rank. An intelligentleman is more eager for truth than worried about poverty.

子曰:“知及之,仁不能守之,虽得之,必失之。知及之,仁能守之,不庄以涖之,则民不敬。知及之,仁能守之,庄以涖之,动之不以礼,未善也。”

Wise enough to attain, said the Master, but not good enough to maintain, he will lose what is gained. Wise enough to attain and good enough to maintain, he will not be respected by people if he rules without dignity. Wise enough to attain and good enough to maintain, and ruling with dignity, he is still not a perfect ruler if he does not act in accordance with the ritual system.

子曰:“民之于仁也,甚于水火。水火,吾见蹈而死者矣,未见蹈仁而死者也。”

The people need virtue, said the Master, more than water and fire. I have seen people drowned in water or burned to death in fire, but none die in virtue.

子曰:“当仁不让于师。”

A good man, said the Master, should not withdraw from being a better man than his teacher.

子曰:“君子贞而不谅。”

An intelligentleman, said the Master, is consistent, but not obstinate.

子曰:“事君,敬其事而后其食。”

In serving the prince, said the Master, a man should do his duty before he gets his reward.

子曰:“有教无类。”

In education, said the Master, there should be no distinction of classes.

子曰:“道不同,不相为谋。”

You cannot take counsel, said the Master, with those who follow a different way.

师冕见,及阶,子曰:“阶也。”及席,子曰:“席也。”皆坐,子告之曰:“某在斯,某在斯。”师冕出。子张问曰:“与师言之道与?”子曰:“然,固相师之道也。”

The blind music master Mian called on Confucius. When he came to the steps, the Master said, “Here are the steps.” When he came to the mat for the guests to sit on, the Master said, “Here is the mat.” When all the guests were seated, the Master told him, “So and so is here, so and so is there.” When the music master was out, Zi Zhang asked whether it was the way to deal with a music master. The Master said, “Yes, this is the way to lead a blind man.”

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