君子固穷 – Chinese philosophy and culture

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jūnzǐ gù qióng 君子固穷

A Man of Virtue Maintains His Ideals Even in Frustrations.

君子在困境中也能坚守道义。“君子”本指贵族男子和统治者,后泛指有教养、有德行的人;“固穷”即在穷困或在不得志的情况下,仍会坚持自己的理想、价值和操守。古人认为,困境是对“君子”的一种考验与历练,而“君子”在困境面前不会动摇本心,更不会失去底线。“君子固穷”犹言“安贫乐道”、“穷不失义”,它强调的是政治和文化精英的道义担当精神、社会引领责任。

Even under pressure, a man of virtue maintains his moral values. Junzi or man of virtue originally referred to a ruler or a man of the aristocracy. Later, it came to mean any educated, upright person. Guqiong (固穷) means to adhere to one’s ideals and values even in times of difficulties and frustrations. The ancients believed that frustrated situations were ordeals for a man of virtue, in which he would not falter in his quest or touch the bottom line. This term summarizes the values of leadership, responsibility and integrity the political and cultural elites should retain in the face of difficulties and hardships.

引例 Citation:

◎子曰:“君子固穷,小人穷斯滥矣。”(《论语·卫灵公》)

(孔子说:“君子处于困境也能坚守道义,小人遇到困境就会不择手段了。”)

Confucius said, “A man of virtue will uphold his ideals even in frustrations, but a petty man will stop at nothing.” (The Analects)

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