Terebess Asia Online (TAO)


The Sacred Books of the East

translated by various Oriental scholars and edited by

F. Max Müller

Vol. XL

The Texts of Taoism

Translated by James Legge

in two parts Part II

The Writings of Kwang-dze (Chuang Tzu) (XVIII-XXXIII)

The T'ai Shang Tractate of Actions and Their Retributions

Appendices I-VIII

scanned at sacred-texts 3/2001




Kih Lo, or 'Perfect Enjoyment[1]'

1. Under the sky is perfect enjoyment to be found or not? Are there any who can preserve themselves alive or not? If there be, what do they do? What do they maintain? What do they avoid? What do they attend to? Where do they resort to? Where do they keep from? What do they delight in? What do they dislike?

What the world honours is riches, dignities, longevity, and being deemed able. What it delights in is rest for the body, rich flavours, fine garments, beautiful colours, and pleasant music. What it looks down on are poverty and mean condition, short life and being deemed feeble[2]. What men consider bitter experiences are that their bodies do not get rest and case, that their mouths do not get food of rich flavour, that their persons are not finely clothed, that their eyes do not see beautiful colours, and that their ears do not listen to pleasant music. If they do not

[1. See vol. xxxix, pp. 149, 150.

2. Of riches, dignities, longevity, and their opposites, enough is said, while the other two qualities are lightly passed over, and referred to only in connexion with 'meritorious officers.' I can only understand them as in the translation.]

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get these things, they are very sorrowful, and go on to be troubled with fears. Their thoughts are all about the body;--are they not silly?

Now the rich embitter their lives by their incessant labours; they accumulate more wealth than they can use:--while they act thus for the body, they make it external to themselves[1]. Those who seek for honours carry their pursuit of them from the day into the night, full of anxiety about their methods whether they are skilful or not:--while they act thus for the body they treat it as if it were indifferent to them[2]. The birth of man is at the same time the birth of his sorrow; and if he live long he becomes more and more stupid, and the longer is his anxiety that he may not die; how great is his bitterness!--while he thus acts for his body, it is for a distant result. Meritorious officers are regarded by the world as good; but (their goodness) is not sufficient to keep their persons alive. I do not know whether the goodness ascribed to them be really good or really not good. If indeed it be considered good, it is not sufficient to preserve their persons alive; if it be deemed not good, it is sufficient to preserve other men alive. Hence it is said, 'When faithful remonstrances are not listened to, (the remonstrant) should sit still, let (his ruler) take his course, and not strive with him.' Therefore when Dze-hsü[3] strove with (his ruler), he brought on himself

[1. If they did not do so, they would be content when they had enough.

2. Wishing to attach it more closely to them.

3. Wû Dze-hsü, the scourge of Khû; and who perished miserably at last, when the king of Wû would no longer listen to his remonstrances;--in about B.C. 475.]

{p. 3}

the mutilation of his body. If he had not so striven, he would not have acquired his fame:--was such (goodness) really good or was it not?

As to what the common people now do, and what they find their enjoyment in, I do not know whether the enjoyment be really enjoyment or really not. I see them in their pursuit of it following after all their aims as if with the determination of death, and as if they could not stop in their course; but what they call enjoyment would not be so to me, while yet I do not say that there is no enjoyment in it. Is there indeed such enjoyment, or is there not? I consider doing nothing (to obtain it) to be the great enjoyment', while ordinarily people consider it to be a great evil. Hence it is said, 'Perfect enjoyment is to be without enjoyment; the highest praise is to be without praise[2].' The right and the wrong (on this point of enjoyment) cannot indeed be determined according to (the view of) the world; nevertheless, this doing nothing (to obtain it) may determine the right and the wrong. Since perfect enjoyment is (held to be) the keeping the body alive, it is only by this doing nothing that that end is likely to be secured. Allow me to try and explain this (more fully):--Heaven does nothing, and thence comes its serenity; Earth does nothing, and thence comes its rest. By the union of these two inactivities, all things are produced. How vast and imperceptible is the process!--they seem to come from

[1. This is the secret of the Tâo.

2. The last member of this sentence is the reading adopted by Wû Khäng towards the conclusion of the thirty-ninth chapter of the Tâo Teh King, instead of the common ###.]

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nowhere! How imperceptible and vast!--there is no visible image of it! All things in all their variety grow from this Inaction. Hence it is said, 'Heaven and Earth do nothing, and yet there is nothing that they do not do[I].' But what man is there that can attain to this inaction?

2. When Kwang-dze's wife died, Hui-dze went to condole with him, and, finding him squatted on the ground, drumming on the basin[2], and singing, said to him, 'When a wife has lived with her husband, and brought up children, and then dies in her old age, not to wail for her is enough. When you go on to drum on this basin and sing, is it not an excessive (and strange) demonstration?' Kwang-dze replied, 'It is not so. When she first died, was it possible for me to be singular and not affected by the event? But I reflected on the commencement of her being[3]. She had not yet been born to life; not only had she no life, but she had no bodily form; not only bad she no bodily form, but she had no breath. During the intermingling of the waste and dark chaos[3], there ensued a change, and there was breath; another change, and there was the bodily form; another change, and there came birth

[1. Compare similar statements in the Tâo Teh King, ch. 48, et al.

2. The basin or tub, not 'a basin.' The reference is, no doubt, to the basin of ice put down near or under the couch on which the body was laid. I suppose that Kwang-dze was squatting so as to have this between his legs.

3. Is the writer referring to the primal creation as we may call it, or development of things out of the chaos, or to some analogous process at the birth of his wife? However that be, birth and death appear to him to be merely changes of the same kind in the perpetual process of evolution.]

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and life. There is now a change again, and she is dead. The relation between these things is like the procession of the four seasons from spring to autumn, from winter to summer. There now she lies with her face up, sleeping in the Great Chamber[1]; and if I were to fall sobbing and going on to wail for her, I should think that I did not understand what was appointed (for all). I therefore restrained myself[2]!'

3. Mr. Deformed[3] and Mr. One-foot[3] were looking at the mound-graves of the departed in the wild of Khwän-lun, where Hwang-Tî had entered into his rest. Suddenly a tumour began to grow on their left wrists, which made them look distressed as if they disliked it. The former said to the other, 'Do

[1. Between heaven and earth.

2. Was it necessary he should fall singing to his drumming on the basin? But I subjoin a note here, suggested by the paragraph, which might have found, perhaps, a more appropriate place in the notice of this Book in vol. xxxix, pp. 149, 150.

In Sir John F. Davis' 'Description of the Empire of China and its Inhabitants (edition of 1857),' vol. ii, pp. 74-90, we have the amusing story of 'The Philosopher and his Wife.' The philosopher is Kwang-dze, who plays the part of a magician; and of his wife it might be said, 'Frailty, thy name is woman!' Sir John Davis says, 'The story was translated into French by Père d'Entrecolles, and supplied the materials of Voltaire's Zadig.' I have not met in Chinese with Father d'Entrecolles' original. All of Zadig which can be supposed to have been borrowed from his translator is only a few sentences. The whole story is inconsistent with the account in paragraph 2 of the death of Kwang-dze's wife, and with all which we learn from his writings of his character.

3. We know nothing of these parties but what we are told here. They are called Shû, meaning 'uncle,' often equivalent in China to our 'Mr.' The lesson taught by them is that of submission to pain and death as merely phenomena in the sphere of change. For the phraseology of their names, see Bk. III, par. 3, and Bk. IV, par. 8.]

{p. 6}

you dread it?' 'No,' replied he, 'why should I dread it? Life is a borrowed thing. The living frame thus borrowed is but so much dust. Life and death are like day and night. And you and I were looking at (the graves of) those who have undergone their change. If my change is coming to me, why should I dislike it?'

4. When Kwang-dze went to Khû, he saw an empty skull, bleached indeed, but still retaining its shape. Tapping it with his horse-switch, he asked it, saying, 'Did you, Sir, in your greed of life, fail in the lessons of reason, and come to this? Or did you do so, in the service of a perishing state, by the punishment of the axe? Or was it through your evil conduct, reflecting disgrace on your parents and on your wife and children? Or was it through your hard endurances of cold and hunger? Or was it that you had completed your term of life?'

Having given expression to these questions, he took up the skull, and made a pillow of it when he went to sleep. At midnight the skull appeared to him in a dream, and said,' What you said to me was after the fashion of an orator. All your words were about the entanglements of men in their lifetime. There are none of those things after death. Would you like to hear me, Sir, tell you about death?' 'I should,' said Kwang-dze, and the skull resumed: 'In death there are not (the distinctions of) ruler above and minister below. There are none of the phenomena of the four seasons. Tranquil and at ease, our years are those of heaven and earth. No king in his court has greater enjoyment than we have.' Kwang-dze did not believe it, and said, 'If I

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could get the Ruler of our Destiny[1] to restore your body to life with its bones and flesh and skin, and to give you back your father and mother, your wife and children, and all your village acquaintances, would you wish me to do so?' The skull stared fixedly at him, knitted its brows, and said, 'How should I cast away the enjoyment of my royal court, and undertake again the toils of life among mankind?'

5. When Yen Yüan went eastwards to Khî, Confucius wore a look of sorrow[2]. Dze-kung left his mat, and asked him, saying, 'Your humble disciple ventures to ask how it is that the going eastwards of Hui to Khî has given you such a look of sadness.' Confucius said, 'Your question is good. Formerly Kwan-dze[3] used words of which I very much approve. He said, "A small bag cannot be made to contain what is large; a short rope cannot be used to draw water from a deep well[3]." So it is, and man's appointed lot is definitely determined, and his body is adapted for definite ends, so that neither the one nor the other can be augmented or diminished. I am afraid that Hui will talk with the marquis of Khî about the ways of Hwang-Tî, Yâo, and Shun, and go on to relate the words of Sui-zän and Shän Näng. The marquis will seek (for the correspondence of what he is told) in himself; and, not finding

[1. I suppose the Tâo; but none of the commentators, so far as I have seen, say anything about the expression.

2. Compare the long discourse of Confucius with Yen Hui, on the latter's proposing to go to Wei, in Bk. IV.

3. Kwan Î-wû or Kwan Kung, the chief minister of duke Hwan of Khî, whom he is supposed to have in view in his 'small bag and short rope.']

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it there, will suspect the speaker; and that speaker, being suspected, will be put to death. And have you not heard this?--Formerly a sea-bird alighted in the suburban country of Lû[1]. The marquis went out to meet it, (brought it) to the ancestral temple, and prepared to banquet it there. The Kiû-shâo[2] was performed to afford it music; an ox, a sheep, and a pig were killed to supply the food. The bird, however, looked at everything with dim eyes, and was very sad. It did not venture to eat a single bit of flesh, nor to drink a single cupful; and in three days it died.

'The marquis was trying to nourish the bird with what he used for himself, and not with the nourishment proper for a bird. They who would nourish birds as they ought to be nourished should let them perch in the deep forests, or roam over sandy plains; float on the rivers and lakes; feed on the eels and small fish; wing their flight in regular order and then stop; and be free and at ease in their resting-places. It was a distress to that bird to hear men speak; what did it care for all the noise and hubbub made about it? If the music of the Kiû-shâo[3] or the Hsien-khih[4] were performed in the wild of the Thung-thing[4] lake, birds would fly away, and beasts would run off when they heard it, and fishes would dive down to the bottom of the water; while men, when they hear it, would come all round together,

[1. Perhaps another and more ridiculous version of the story told in 'the Narratives of the States,' II, i, art. 7.

2. The name of Shun's music;--see the Shû (in vol. iii), par. 2.

3. Called also Tâ Shâo, in Book XXXIII, par. 2.

4. Hwang-Tî's music;--see Bk. XIV, par. 3--But the genuineness of the whole paragraph is called in question.]

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and look on. Fishes live and men die in the water. They are different in constitution, and therefore differ in their likes and dislikes. Hence it was that the ancient sages did not require (from all) the same ability, nor demand the same performances. They gave names according to the reality of what was done, and gave their approbation where it was specially suitable. This was what was called the method of universal adaptation and of sure success.'

6. Lieh-dze (once) upon a journey took a meal by the road-side. There he saw a skull a hundred years old, and, pulling away the bush (under which it lay), he pointed to it and said, 'It is only you and I who know that you are not dead, and that (aforetime) you were not alive. Do you indeed really find (in death) the nourishment (which you like)? Do I really find (in life my proper) enjoyment? The seeds (of things) are multitudinous and minute. On the surface of the water they form a membranous texture. When they reach to where the land and water join they become the (lichens which we call the) clothes of frogs and oysters. Coming to life on mounds and heights, they become the plantain; and, receiving manure, appear as crows' feet. The roots of the crow's foot become grubs, and its leaves, butterflies. This butterfly, known by the name of hsü, is changed into an insect, and comes to life under a furnace. Then it has the form of a moth, and is named the khü-to. The khü-to after a thousand days becomes a bird, called the kan-yü-kû. Its saliva becomes the sze-mî, and this again the shih-hsî (or pickle-eater). The î-lo is produced from the pickle-eater; the hwang-kwang from the

{p. 10}

kiû-yû; the mâu-zui from the pû-khwan. The ying-hsî uniting with a bamboo, which has long ceased to put forth sprouts, produces the khing-ning; the khing-ning, the panther; the panther, the horse; and the horse, the man. Man then again enters into the great Machinery (of Evolution), from which all things come forth (at birth), and which they enter at death[1].'

[1. A much larger paragraph from which this must have been abbreviated, or which must have been enlarged from this, is found in the first Book of Lieh-dze's works (pp. 4, 5). In no Buddhist treatise is the transrotation of births more fully, and, I must add, absurdly stated.]

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Tâ Shäng, or 'The Full Understanding of Life[1].'

1. He who understands the conditions of Life does not strive after what is of no use to life; and he who understands the conditions of Destiny does not strive after what is beyond the reach of knowledge. In nourishing the body it is necessary to have beforehand the things (appropriate to its support)[2]; but there are cases where there is a superabundance of such things, and yet the body is not nourished'. In order to have life it is necessary that it do not have left the body; but there are cases when the body has not been left by it, and yet the life has perished[3].

When life comes, it cannot be declined; when it goes, it cannot be detained. Alas! the men of the world think that to nourish the body is sufficient to preserve life; and when such nourishment is not sufficient to preserve the life, what can be done in the world that will be sufficient? Though (all that men can do) will be insufficient, yet there are things which they feel they ought to do, and they do not try to avoid doing them. For those who wish to

[1. See vol. xxxix, pp. 150, 151.

2. Wealth will supply abundantly the things that are necessary and fit for the nourishment of the body, but sudden death may render them unavailing.

3. That is, the higher fife of the spirit has perished.]

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avoid caring for the body, their best plan is to abandon the world. Abandoning the world, they are free from its entanglements. Free from its entanglements, their (minds) are correct and their (temperament) is equable. Thus correct and equable, they succeed in securing a renewal of life, as some have done'. In securing a renewal of life, they are not far from the True (Secret of their being). But how is it sufficient to abandon worldly affairs? and how is it sufficient to forget the (business of) life? Through the renouncing of (worldly) affairs, the body has no more toil; through forgetting the (business of) life, the vital power suffers no diminution. When the body is completed and the vital power is restored (to its original vigour), the man is one with Heaven. Heaven and Earth are the father and mother of all things. It is by their union that the body is formed; it is by their separation that a (new) beginning is brought about. When the body and vital power suffer no diminution, we have what may be called the transference of power. From the vital force there comes another more vital, and man returns to be the assistant of Heaven.

2. My master[2] Lieh-dze[2] asked Yin, (the warden) of the gate[2], saying, 'The perfect man walks under

[1. I think I have caught the meaning. The phrase signifying 'the renewal of life' has been used to translate 'being born again' in John's Gospel, ch. 3.

2. We find here Lieh-dze (whose name has already occurred several times) in communication with the warden Yin, who was a contemporary of Lâo-dze, and we must refer him therefore to the sixth century B.C. He could not therefore be contemporary with our author, and yet the three characters of the text mean 'My Master, Lieh-dze;' and the whole of the paragraph is found in Lieh-dze's second Book (4a-5a) with a good many variants in the text. {footnote p. 13} The gate was at the passage leading from the Royal Domain of those days into the great feudal territory of Zin;--from the north-west of the present province of Ho-nan into Shen-hsî.]

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water without encountering any obstruction, treads on fire without being burned, and walks on high above all things without any fear; let me ask how he attains to do this[1]?' The warden Yin replied, 'It is by his keeping of the pure breath (of life); it is not to be described as an achievement of his skill or daring. Sit down, and I will explain it to you. Whatever has form, semblance, sound, and colour is a thing; how can one thing come to be different from another? But it is not competent for any of these things to reach to what preceded them all;--they are but (form and) visibility. But (the perfect man) attains to be (as it were) without form, and beyond the capability of being transformed. Now when one attains to this and carries it out to the highest degree, how can other things come into his way to stop him? He will occupy the place assigned to him without going beyond it, and lie concealed in the clue which has no end. He will study with delight the process which gives their beginning and ending to all things. By gathering his nature into a unity, by nourishing his vital power, by concentrating his virtue, lie will penetrate to the making of things. In this condition, with his heavenly constitution kept entire, and with no crevice in his spirit, how can things enter (and disturb his serenity)?

'Take the case of a drunken man falling from his carriage;--though he may suffer injury, he will not

[1. Lieh-dze puts an absurd question to the warden, which is replied to at length, and unsatisfactorily. We need not discuss either the question or the answer in this place.]

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die. His bones and joints are the same as those of other men, but the injury which he receives is different:--his spirit is entire. He knew nothing about his getting into the carriage, and knew nothing about his falling from it. The thought of death or life, or of any alarm or affright, does not enter his breast; and therefore he encounters danger without any shrinking from it. Completely under the influence of the liquor he has drunk, it is thus with him;--how much more would it be so, if he were under the influence of his Heavenly constitution! The sagely man is kept hid in his Heavenly constitution, and therefore nothing can injure him.

'A man in the pursuit of vengeance would not break the (sword) Mo-yê or Yü-kiang (which had done the deed); nor would one, however easily made wrathful, wreak his resentment on the fallen brick. In this way all under heaven there would be peace, without the disorder of assaults and fighting, without the punishments of death and slaughter:--such would be the issue of the course (which I have described). If the disposition that is of human origin be not developed, but that which is the gift of Heaven, the development of the latter will produce goodness, while that of the former would produce hurt. If the latter were not wearied of, and the former not slighted, the people would be brought nearly to their True nature.'

3. When Kung-nî was on his way to Khû, as he issued from a forest, he saw a hunchback receiving cicadas (on the point of a rod), as if he were picking them up with his hand'. 'You are clever!' said he

[1. This paragraph is also found with variations in Lieh-dze, {footnote p. 15} Bk. II (9a). The dexterity of the hunchback in catching the cicadas will remind some readers of the account given by the butcher in Book III of his dexterity in cutting up his oxen.]

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to the man. 'Is there any method in it?' The hunchback replied, 'There is. For five or six months, I practised with two pellets, till they never fell down, and then I only failed with a small fraction[1] of the cicadas (which I tried to catch). Having succeeded in the same way with three (pellets), I missed only one cicada in ten. Having succeeded with five, I caught the cicadas as if I were gathering them. My body is to me no more than the stump of a broken trunk, and my shoulder no more than the branch of a rotten tree. Great as heaven and earth are, and multitudinous as things are, I take no notice of them, but only of the wings of my cicadas; neither turning nor inclining to one side. I would not for them all exchange the wings of my cicadas;--how should I not succeed in taking them?' Confucius looked round, and said to his disciples, "Where the will is not diverted from its object, the spirit is concentrated;"--this might have been spoken of this hunchback gentleman.'

4. Yen Yüan asked Kung-nî, saying, 'When 1 was crossing the gulf of Khang-shän[2], the ferryman handled the boat like a spirit. I asked him whether such management of a boat could be learned, and he replied, "It may. Good swimmers can learn it quickly; but as for divers, without having seen a boat, they can manage it at once." He did not

[1. The names of two small weights, used anciently for 'a fraction,' 'a small proportion.'

2. This is another paragraph common both to our author and Lieh-dze, but in neither is there any intimation of the place.]

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directly tell me what I asked;--I venture to ask you what he meant.' Kung-nî replied, 'Good swimmers acquire the ability quickly;--they forget the water (and its dangers). As to those who are able to dive, and without having seen a boat are able to manage it at once, they look on the watery gulf as if it were a hill-side, and the upsetting of a boat as the going back of a carriage. Such upsettings and goings back have occurred before them multitudes of times, and have not seriously affected their minds. Wherever they go, they feel at ease on their occurrence.

'He who is contending for a piece of earthenware puts forth all his skill[1]. If the prize be a buckle of brass, he shoots timorously; if it be for an article of gold, he shoots as if he were blind. The skill of the archer is the same in all the cases; but (in the two latter cases) he is under the influence of solicitude, and looks on the external prize as most important. All who attach importance to what is external show stupidity in themselves.'

5. Thien Khâi-kih[2] was having an interview with duke Wei of Kâu[2], who said to him, 'I have heard that (your master) Kû Hsin[2] has studied the subject of Life. What have you, good Sir, heard from him about it in your intercourse with him?' Thien Khâi-kih replied, 'In my waiting on him in the courtyard with my broom, what should I have heard from my master?' Duke Wei said, 'Do not put the question off, Mr. Thien; I wish to hear what

[1. I think this is the meaning. ### is defined by ###, 'to compete for anything by archery.'

2. We have no information about who these personages and the others below were, and I have missed the story, if it be in Lieh-dze. The duke, it will be seen, had the appanage of Kâu.]

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you have to say.' Khâi-kih then replied, 'I have heard my master say that they who skilfully nourish their life are like shepherds, who whip up the sheep that they see lagging behind[1].' 'What did he mean?' asked the duke. The reply was, 'In Lû there was a Shan Pâo, who lived among the rocks, and drank only water. He would not share with the people in their toils and the benefits springing from them; and though he was now in his seventieth year, he had still the complexion of a child. Unfortunately he encountered a hungry tiger, which killed and ate him. There was also a Kang Î, who hung up a screen at his lofty door, and to whom all the people hurried (to pay their respects)[2]. In his fortieth year, he fell ill of a fever and died. (Of these two men), Pho nourished his inner man, and a tiger ate his outer; while I nourished his outer man, and disease attacked his inner. Both of them neglected whipping up their lagging sheep.'

Kung-nî said, 'A man should not retire and hide himself; he should not push forward and display himself; he should be like the decayed tree which stands in the centre of the ground. Where these three conditions are fulfilled, the name will reach its greatest height. When people fear the dangers of a path, if one man in ten be killed, then fathers and sons, elder brothers and younger, warn one another that they must not go out on a journey without a large number of retainers;--and is it not a mark of wisdom to do so? But there are dangers which

[1. Pay more attention to any part of their culture which they are neglecting.

2. It served its purpose there, but had not been put in its place with any special object.]

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men incur on the mats of their beds, and in eating and drinking; and when no warning is given against them;--is it not a mark of error[1]?'

6. The officer of Prayer[2] in his dark and square-cut robes goes to the pig-pen, and thus counsels the pigs, 'Why should you shrink from dying? I will for three months feed you on grain. Then for ten days I will fast, and keep vigil for three days, after which I will put down the mats of white grass, and lay your shoulders and rumps on the carved stand;--will not this suit you?' If he had spoken from the standpoint of the pigs, he would have said, 'The better plan will be to feed us with our bran and chaff, and leave us in our pen.' When consulting for himself, he preferred to enjoy, while he lived, his carriage and cap of office, and after death to be borne to the grave on the ornamented carriage, with the canopy over his coffin. Consulting for the pigs, he did not think of these things, but for himself he would have chosen them. Why did he think so differently (for himself and) for the pigs[3]?

7. (Once), when duke Hwan[4] was hunting by a marsh, with Kwan Kung[5] driving the carriage, he saw a ghost. Laying his hand on that of Kwan

[1. This may seem to nourish the body, but in reality injures the life.

2. Who had the charge also of the sacrifices.

3. Lin Hsî-hung says that the story shows the many troubles that arise from not renouncing the world. Ensnared by the world, men sacrifice for it their higher life, and are not so wise as pigs are for their life. The short paragraph bristles with difficulties.

4. The first of the leading chieftains among the princes; B.C. 683-642.

5. His chief minister.]

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Kung, he said to him, 'Do you see anything, Father Kung?' 'Your servant sees nothing,' was the reply. The duke then returned, talking incoherently and becoming ill, so that for several days he did not go out. Among the officers of Khî there was a Hwang-dze Kâo-âo[1], who said to the duke, 'Your Grace is injuring yourself; how could a ghost injure you? When a paroxysm of irritation is dispersed, and the breath does not return (to the body), what remains in the body is not sufficient for its wants. When it ascends and does not descend, the patient becomes accessible to gusts of anger. When it descends and does not ascend, he loses his memory of things. When it neither ascends nor descends, but remains about the heart in the centre of the body, it makes him ill.' The duke said, 'Yes, but are there ghostly sprites[2]?' The officer replied, 'There are about mountain tarns there is the Lî; about furnaces, the Khieh; about the dust-heaps inside the door, the Lei-thing. In low-lying places in the north-east, the Pei-a and Wa-lung leap about, and in similar places in the north-west there dwells the Yî-yang. About rivers there is the Wang-hsiang; about mounds, the Hsin; about hills, the Khwei; about wilds, the Fang-hwang; about marshes, the Wei-tho.' 'Let me ask what is the Wei-tho like?' asked the duke. Hwang-dze said, 'It is the size of the

[1. An officer introduced here for the occasion, by surname Hwang, and designation Kâo-âo. The Dze simply = Mr.

2. The commentators have a deal to say about the folklore of the various sprites mentioned. 'The whole shows that ghostly sprites are the fruit of a disordered mind.' It is a touch of nature that the prince recovers as soon as he knows that the ghost he had seen was of good presage.]

{p. 20}

nave of a chariot wheel, and the length of the shaft. It wears a purple robe and a red cap. It dislikes the rumbling noise of chariot wheels, and, when it hears it, it puts both its hands to its head and stands up. He who sees it is likely to become the leader of all the other princes.' Duke Hwan burst out laughing and said, 'This was what I saw.' On this he put his robes and cap to rights, and made Hwang-dze sit with him. Before the day was done, his illness was quite gone, he knew not how.

8. Kî Hsing-dze was rearing a fighting-cock for the king[1]. Being asked after ten days if the bird were ready, he said, 'Not yet; he is still vain and quarrelsome, and relies on his own vigour.' Being asked the same after other ten days, he said, 'Not yet; he still responds to the crow and the appearance of another bird.' After ten days more, he replied, 'Not yet. He still looks angrily, and is full of spirit.' When a fourth ten days had passed, he replied to the question, 'Nearly so. Though another cock crows, it makes no change in him. To look at him, you would say he was a cock of wood. His quality is complete. No other cock will dare to meet him, but will run from him.'

9. Confucius was looking at the cataract near the gorge of Lü[2], which fell a height of 240 cubits, and

[1. According to the Lieh-dze version of this story (Bk. II, 17b) the king was king Hsüan, B.C. 827-782. The trainer's rule seems to have been that his bird should meet its antagonist, with all its vigour complete and undisturbed, and not wishing to fight.

2. I think that there are two versions of this story in Lieh-dze. In Bk. VIII (4b, 5a), it appears that Confucius was on his way from Wei to Lû, when he stopped his carriage or cart at this spot to view the cataract, and the incident occurred, and he took the opportunity to give the lesson to his disciples.]

{p. 21}

the spray of which floated a distance of forty lî, (producing a turbulence) in which no tortoise, gavial, fish, or turtle could play. He saw, however, an old man swimming about in it, as if he had sustained Some great calamity, and wished to end his life. Confucius made his disciples hasten along the stream to rescue the man; and by the time they had gone several hundred paces, he was walking along singing, with his hair dishevelled, and enjoying himself at the foot of the embankment. Confucius followed and asked him, saying, 'I thought you were a sprite; but, when I look closely at you, I see that you are a man. Let me ask if you have any particular way of treading the water.' The man said, 'No, I have no particular way. I began (to learn the art) at the very earliest time; as I grew up, it became my nature to practise it; and my success in it is now as sure as fate. I enter and go down with the water in the very centre of its whirl, and come up again with it when it whirls the other way. I follow the way of the water, and do nothing contrary to it of myself;--this is how I tread it.' Confucius said, 'What do you mean by saying that you began to learn the art at the very earliest time; that as you grew up, it became your nature to practise it, and that your success in it now is as sure as fate?' The man replied, 'I was born among these hills and lived contented among them;--that was why I say that I have trod this water from my earliest time. I grew up by it, and have been happy treading it;--that is why I said that to tread it had become natural to me. I know not how I do it, and yet I do it;--that is why I say that my success is as sure as fate.'

{p. 22}

10. Khing, the Worker in Rottlera[1] wood, carved a bell-stand[2], and when it was completed, all who saw it were astonished as if it were the work of spirits. The marquis of Lû went to see it, and asked by what art he had succeeded in producing it. 'Your subject is but a mechanic,' was the reply; 'what art should I be possessed of? Nevertheless, there is one thing (which I will mention), When your servant had undertaken to make the bell-stand, I did not venture to waste any of my power, and felt it necessary to fast in order to compose my mind. After fasting for three days, I did not presume to think of any congratulation, reward, rank, or emolument (which I might obtain by the execution of my task); after fasting five days, I did not presume to think of the condemnation or commendation (which it would produce), or of the skill or want of skill (which it might display). At the end of the seven days, I had forgotten all about myself;--my four limbs and my whole person. By this time the thought of your Grace's court (for which I was to make the thing) had passed away; everything that could divert my mind from exclusive devotion to the exercise of my skill had disappeared. Then I went into the forest, and looked at the natural forms of the trees. When I saw one of a perfect form, then the figure of the bell-stand rose up to my view, and I applied my hand to the work. Had

[1. The Dze or rottlera was and is a very famous tree, called 'the king of trees,' from its stately appearance and the excellence of its timber.

2. The 'bell-stand' is celebrated in the Shih King, III, i, Ode 8. A complete peal consisted of twelve bells, suspended in two tiers one above the other.]

{p. 23}

I not met with such a tree, I must have abandoned the object; but my Heaven-given faculty and the Heaven-given qualities of the wood were concentrated on it. So it was that my spirit was thus engaged in the production of the bell-stand.'

11. Tung-yê Kî[1] was introduced to duke Kwang[2] to exhibit his driving. His horses went forwards and backwards with the straightness of a line, and wheeled to the right and the left with the exactness of a circle. The duke thought that the lines and circles could not be surpassed if they were woven with silken strings, and told him to make a hundred circuits on the same lines. On the road Yen Ho[3] met the equipage, and on entering (the palace), and seeing the duke, he said, 'Kî's horses will break down,' but the duke was silent, and gave him no reply. After a little the horses did come back, having broken down; and the duke then said,' How did you know that it would be so?' Yen Ho said, 'The horses were exhausted, and he was still urging them on. It was this which made me say that they would break down.'

12. The artisan Shui[4] made things round (and square) more exactly than if he had used the circle

[1. Ki would be the name of the charioteer, a gentleman of La, called Tung-yê, 'eastern country,' I suppose from the situation of his estate.

2. Duke Kwang would be the marquis Thung of Lû, B.C. 693-662.

3. Yen Ho was probably the chief of the Yen family at the time. A scion of it, Yen Hui, afterwards became the favourite disciple of Confucius. He could hardly be the same Yen Ho who is mentioned in Bk. IV, par. 5. Ki has had, and still has, his representatives in every country.

4. Shui is mentioned in the Shû King, V, xxii, 19, as a famous maker of arrows. Some carry him back to the time of Shun.]

{p. 24}

and square. The operation of his fingers on (the forms of) things was like the transformations of them (in nature), and required no application of his mind; and so his Intelligence I was entire and encountered no resistance.

13. To be unthought of by the foot that wears it is the fitness of a shoe; to be unthought of by the waist is the fitness of a girdle. When one's wisdom does not think of the right or the wrong (of a question under discussion), that shows the suitability of the mind (for the question); when one is conscious of no inward change, or outward attraction, that shows the mastery of affairs. He who perceives at once the fitness, and never loses the sense of it, has the fitness that forgets all about what is fitting.

14. There was a Sun Hsiû[1] who went to the door of Dze-pien Khing-dze, and said to him in a strange perturbed way, 'When I lived in my village, no one took notice of me, but all said that I did not cultivate (my fields); in a time of trouble and attack, no one took notice of me, but all said that I had no courage. But that I did not cultivate my fields, was really because I never met with a good year; and that I did not do service for our ruler, was because I did not meet with the suitable opportunity to do so. I have been sent about my business by the villagers, and am driven away by the registrars of the district;--what is my crime? O Heaven! how is it that I have met with such a fate?'

[1. Literally, 'Tower of intelligence,'--a Tâoistic name for the mind.

2. A weakling, of whom we know only what we read here.]

{p. 25}

Pien-dze[1] said to him, 'Have you not heard how the perfect man deals with himself? He forgets that be has a liver and gall. He takes no thought of his ears and eyes. He seems lost and aimless beyond the dust and dirt of the world, and enjoys himself at ease in occupations untroubled by the affairs of business. He may be described as acting and yet not relying on what he does, as being superior and yet not using his superiority to exercise any control. But now you would make a display of your wisdom to astonish the ignorant; you would cultivate your person to make the inferiority of others more apparent; you seek to shine as if you were carrying the sun and moon in your hands. That you are complete in your bodily frame, and possess all its nine openings; that you have not met with any calamity in the middle of your course, such as deafness, blindness, or lameness, and can still take your place as a man among other men;--in all this you are fortunate. What leisure have you to murmur against Heaven? Go away, Sir.'

Sun-dze on this went out, and Pien-dze went inside. Having sitten down, after a little time he looked up to heaven, and sighed. His disciples asked him why he sighed, and he said to them, 'Hsiû came to me a little while ago, and I told him the characteristics of the perfect man. I am afraid he will be frightened, and get into a state of perplexity.' His disciples said, 'Not so. If what he said was right, and what you

[1. This must have been a man of more note. We find him here with a school of disciples in his house, and sought out for counsel by men like Sun Hsiû.]

{p. 26}

said was wrong, the wrong will certainly not be able to perplex the right. If what he said was wrong, and what you said was right, it was just because he was perplexed that he came to you. What was your fault in dealing with him as you did?' Pien-dze said, 'Not so. Formerly a bird came, and took up its seat in the suburbs of Lû[1]. The ruler of Lû was pleased with it, and provided an ox, a sheep, and a pig to feast it, causing also the Kiû-shâo to be performed to delight it. But the bird began to be sad, looked dazed, and did not venture to eat or drink. This was what is called "Nourishing a bird, as you would nourish yourself." He who would nourish a bird as a bird should be nourished should let it perch in a deep forest, or let it float on a river or lake, or let it find its food naturally and undisturbed on the level dry ground. Now Hsiû (came to me), a man of slender intelligence, and slight information, and I told him of the characteristics of the perfect man, it was like using a carriage and horses to convey a mouse, or trying to delight a quail with the music of bells and drums;could the creatures help being frightened?'

[1. Compare par. 5, Bk. XVIII.]

{p. 27}



Shan Mû, or 'The Tree on the Mountain[1].'

1. Kwang-dze was walking on a mountain, when he saw a great tree[2] with huge branches and luxuriant foliage. A wood-cutter was resting by its side, but he would not touch it, and, when asked the reason, said, that it was of no use for anything, Kwang-dze then said to his disciples, 'This tree, because its wood is good for nothing, will succeed in living out its natural term of years.' Having left the mountain, the Master lodged in the house of an old friend, who was glad to see him, and ordered his waiting-lad to kill a goose and boil it. The lad said, 'One of our geese can cackle, and the other cannot;--which of them shall I kill?' The host said, 'Kill the one that cannot cackle.'

Next day, his disciples asked Kwang-dze, saying, 'Yesterday the tree on the mountain (you said) would live out its years because of the uselessness of its wood, and now our host's goose has died because of its want of power (to cackle);--which of these conditions, Master, would you prefer to be in?' Kwang-dze laughed and said, '(If I said that) I would prefer to be in a position between being fit to be useful and wanting that fitness, that would

[1. See vol. xxxix, p. 151.

2. Compare the accounts of great trees in I, par. 6; IV, par. 1; et al.]

{p. 28}

seem to be the right position, but it would not be so, for it would not put me beyond being involved in trouble; whereas one who takes his seat on the Tâo and its Attributes, and there finds his ease and enjoyment, is not exposed to such a contingency. He is above the reach both of praise and of detraction; now he (mounts aloft) like a dragon, now he (keeps beneath) like a snake; he is transformed with the (changing) character of the time, and is not willing to addict himself to any one thing; now in a high position and now in a low, he is in harmony with all his surroundings; he enjoys himself at case with the Author of all things[1]; he treats things as things, and is not a thing to them:--where is his liability to be involved in trouble? This was the method of Shän Näng and Hwang-Tî. As to those who occupy themselves with the qualities of things, and with the teaching and practice of the human relations, it is not so with them. Union brings on separation; success, overthrow; sharp corners, the use of the file; honour, critical remarks; active exertion, failure; wisdom, scheming; inferiority, being despised:--where is the possibility of unchangeableness in any of these conditions? Remember this, my disciples. Let your abode be here,-in the Tâo and its Attribute[2].'

2. Î-liâo[3], an officer of Shih-nan[3], having an interview

[1. The Tâo; called ###, in Bk. XII, par. 5.

2. But after all it comes to be the same thing in point of fact with those who ground themselves in the Tâo, and with others.

3. The Î-liâo here was a scion of the ruling House of Khû, and is mentioned fortunately in the Supplement to the Zo-khwan, under the very year in which Confucius died (B.C. 479). His residence was in the south of the 'Market Place' of the city where he lived, {footnote p. 29} which is the meaning of the Shih-nan in the text. The description of his character is that no offer of gain could win him, and no threatening terrify him. We find him here at the court of Lû in friendly conference with the marquis, and trying to persuade him to adopt the ways of Tâoism, which he presents to him under the figure of an allegory, an utopia called 'the State of Established Virtue,' in the south of Yüeh.]

{p. 29}

with the marquis of Lû[1], found him looking sad, and asked him why he was so. The marquis said, 'I have studied the ways of the former kings, and cultivated the inheritance left me by my predecessors. I reverence the spirits of the departed and honour the men of worth, doing this with personal devotion, and without the slightest intermission. Notwithstanding, I do not avoid meeting with calamity, and this it is which makes me sad.' The officer said, 'The arts by which you try to remove calamity are shallow. Think of the close-furred fox and of the elegantly-spotted leopard. They lodge in the forests on the hills, and lurk in their holes among the rocks;--keeping still. At night they go about, and during day remain in their lairs; so cautious are they. Even if they are suffering from hunger, thirst, and other distresses, they still keep aloof from men, seeking their food about the Kiang and the Ho;--so resolute are they. Still they are not able to escape the danger of the net or the trap; and what fault is it of theirs? It is their skins which occasion them the calamity.

'And is not the state of Kû your lordship's skin? I wish your lordship to rip your skin from your body, to cleanse your heart, to put away your desires, and to enjoy yourself where you will be

[1. Probably known to us as 'duke Âi']

{p. 30}

without the presence of any one. In the southern state of Yüeh, there is a district called "the State of Established Virtue." The people are ignorant and simple; their object is to minimise the thought of self and make their desires few; they labour but do not lay up their gains; they give but do not seek for any return; they do not know what righteousness is required of them in any particular case, nor by what ceremonies their performances should be signalised; acting in a wild and eccentric way as if they were mad, they yet keep to the grand rules of conduct. Their birth is an occasion for joy; their death is followed by the rites of burial. I should wish your lordship to leave your state; to give up your ordinary ways, and to proceed to that country by the directest course.'

The ruler said, 'The way to it is distant and difficult; there are rivers and hills; and as I have neither boat nor carriage, how am I to go?' The officer from Shih-nan rejoined, 'If your lordship abjure your personal state, and give up your wish to remain here, that will serve you for a carriage.' The ruler rejoined, 'The way to it is solitary and distant, and there are no people on it;--whom shall 1 have as my companions? I have no provisions prepared, and how shall I get food?-how shall I be able to get (to the country)?' The officer said, 'Minimise your lordship's expenditure, and make your wants few, and though you have no provisions prepared, you will find you have enough. Wade through the rivers and float along on the sea, where however you look, you see not the shore, and, the farther you go, you do not see where your journey is to end;--those who escorted you to the shore will

{p. 31}

return, and after that you will feel yourself far away. Thus it is that he who owns men (as their ruler) is involved in troubles, and he who is owned by men (as their ruler) suffers from sadness; and hence Yâo would neither own men, nor be owned by them. I wish to remove your trouble, and take away your sadness, and it is only (to be done by inducing you) to enjoy yourself with the Tâo in the land of Great Vacuity.

'If a man is crossing a river in a boat, and another empty vessel comes into collision with it, even though he be a man of a choleric temper, he will not be angry with it. If there be a person, however, in that boat, he will bawl out to him to haul out of the way. If his shout be not heard, he will repeat it; and if the other do not then hear, he will call out a third time, following up the shout with abusive terms. Formerly he was not angry, but now he is; formerly (he thought) the boat was empty, but now there is a person in it. If a man can empty himself of himself, during his time in the world, who can harm him?'

3. Pei-kung Shê[1] was collecting taxes for duke Ling of Wei, to be employed in making (a peal of) bells. (In connexion with the work) he built an altar outside the gate of the suburban wall; and in three months the bells were completed, even to the suspending of the upper and lower (tiers). The king's son Khing-kî[2] saw them, and asked what

[1. Pei-kung, 'Northern Palace,' must have been the name of Shê's residence, and appears here as if it were his surname.

2 A son, probably of king King of Kâu (B.C. 544-529).--On the whole paragraph, see par. 10 of the preceding Book.]

{p. 32}

arts he had employed in the making of them. Shê replied, 'Besides my undivided attention to them, 1 did not venture to use any arts. I have heard the saying, "After all the carving and the chiselling, let the object be to return to simplicity." I was as a child who has no knowledge; I was extraordinarily slow and hesitating; they grew like the springing plants of themselves. In escorting those who went and meeting those who came, my object was neither to hinder the corners nor detain the goers. I suffered those who strongly opposed to take their way, and accepted those who did their best to come to terms. I allowed them all to do the utmost they could, and in this way morning and evening I collected the taxes. I did not have the slightest trouble, and how much more will this be the case with those who pursue the Great Way (on a grand scale)!'

4. Confucius was kept (by his enemies) in a state of siege between Khän and Zhâi[1], and for seven days had no food cooked with fire to eat. The Thâi-kung Zân[2] went to condole with him, and said, 'You had nearly met with your death.' 'Yes,' was the reply. 'Do you dislike death?' 'I do.' Then Zän continued, 'Let me try and describe a way by which (such a) death may be avoided.--In the eastern sea there are birds which go by the name Of Î-îs[3]; they fly low and slowly as if they were deficient in power. They fly as if they were

[1. Compare Analects XI, ii.

2. We might translate Thai-kung by 'the grand-duke.' We know nothing about him. He tries to convert Confucius to Tâoism, just as Î-liâo does the marquis of Lû in par. 2; and for a time at least, as Kwang-dze makes it appear, with more success.

3. Were these Î-îs swallows? So some of the critics say.]

{p. 33}

leading and assisting one another, and they press on one another when they roost. No one ventures to take the lead in going forward, or to be the last in going backwards. In eating no one ventures to take the first mouthful, but prefers the fragments left by others. In this way (the breaks in) their line are not many[1], and men outside them cannot harm them, so that they escape injury.

'The straight tree is the first to be cut down; the well of sweet water is the first to be exhausted. Your aim is to embellish your wisdom so as to startle the ignorant, and to cultivate your person to show the unsightliness of others. A light shines around you as if you were carrying with you the sun and moon, and thus it is that you do not escape such calamity. Formerly I heard a highly accomplished man say, "Those who boast have no merit. The merit which is deemed complete will begin to decay. The fame which is deemed complete will begin to wane." Who can rid himself of (the ideas of) merit and fame, and return and put himself on the level of the masses of men? The practice of the Tâo flows abroad, but its master does not care to dwell where it can be seen; his attainments in it hold their course, but he does not wish to appear in its display. Always simple and commonplace, he may seem to be "bereft of reason. He obliterates the traces of his action, gives up position and power, and aims not at merit and fame. Therefore he does not censure men, and men do not censure him. The perfect man does not seek to be heard of; how is it that you delight in doing so

[1. A clause of uncertain meaning.]

{p. 34}

Confucius said, 'Excellent;' and thereupon he took leave of his associates, forsook his disciples, retired to the neighbourhood of a great marsh, wore skins and hair cloth, and ate acorns and chestnuts. He went among animals without causing any confusion among their herds, and among birds without troubling their movements. Birds and beasts did not dislike him; how much less would men do so!

5. Confucius asked Dze-sang Hû[1], saying, 'I was twice driven from Lû; the tree was felled over me in Sung; I was obliged to disappear from Wei; I was reduced to extreme distress in Shang and Kâu[2]; and I was kept in a state of siege between Khän and Zhâi. I have encountered these various calamities; my intimate associates are removed from me more and more; my followers and friends are more and more dispersed;--why have all these things befallen me?' Dze-sang Hû replied, 'Have you not heard of the flight of Lin Hui of Kiâ[3];--how he abandoned his round jade symbol of rank, worth a thousand pieces of silver, and hurried away with his infant son on his back? If it be asked, "Was it because of the market value of the child?" But that value was small (compared with the value of the jade token). If it be asked again, "Was it because of the troubles

[1. Supposed to have been a recluse.

2. I do not know the particulars of this distress in Shang and Kâu, or have forgotten them. A still more full recital of the sage's misfortunes occurs in Lieh-dze, VII, 8a.

3. The text here appears to be somewhat confused. Lin Hui is said to have been a man of the Yin dynasty, and of a state which was called Kiâ, and for the verification of such a state I have searched in vain. The explanation of his conduct put here into his mouth is very good.]

{p. 35}

(of his office)?" But the child would occasion him much more trouble. Why was it then that, abandoning the jade token, worth a thousand pieces of silver, he hurried away with the child on his back? Lin Hui (himself) said, "The union between me and the token rested on the ground of gain; that between me and the child was of Heaven's appointment." Where the bond of union is its profitableness, when the pressure of poverty, calamity, distress, and injury come, the parties abandon one another; when it is of Heaven's appointment, they hold in the same circumstances to one another. Now between abandoning one another, and holding to one another, the difference is great. Moreover, the intercourse of superior men is tasteless as water, while that of mean men is sweet as new wine. But the tastelessness of the superior men leads on to affection, and the sweetness of the mean men to aversion. The union which originates without any cause will end in separation without any cause.'

Confucius said, 'I have reverently received your instructions.' And hereupon, with a slow step and an assumed air of ease, he returned to his own house. There he made an end of studying and put away his books. His disciples came no more to make their bow to him (and be taught), but their affection for him increased the more.

Another day Sang Hû said further to him, 'When Shun was about to die, he charged[1] Yü, saying, 'Be

[1. The ### of the text here are allowed on all hands to be spurious, and ### have been substituted for them. What follows, however, from Shun to Yü, is far from being clear, in itself, or in its connexion.]

{p. 36}

upon your guard. (The attraction of) the person is not like that of sympathy; the (power of) affection is not like the leading (of example). Where there is sympathy, there will not be separation; where there is (the leading of) example, there will be no toil. Where there is neither separation nor toil, you will not have to seek the decoration of forms to make the person attractive, and where there is no such need of those forms, there will certainly be none for external things.'

6. Kwang-dze in a patched dress of coarse cloth, and having his shoes tied together with strings, was passing by the king of Wei, who said to him, 'How great, Master, is your distress?' Kwang-dze replied, 'It is poverty, not distress! While a scholar possesses the Tâo and its Attributes, he cannot be going about in distress. Tattered clothes and shoes tied on the feet are the sign of poverty, and not of distress. This is what we call not meeting with the right time. Has your majesty not seen the climbing monkey? When he is among the plane trees, rottleras, oaks, and camphor trees, he grasps and twists their branches (into a screen), where he reigns quite at his ease, so that not even Î[1] or Phäng Mäng[1] could spy him out. When, however, he finds himself among the prickly mulberry and date trees, and other thorns, he goes cautiously, casts sidelong glances, and takes every trembling movement with apprehension;--it is not that his sinews and bones

[1. Î;--see Book. V, par. 2. Phäng Mäng was a contemporary of Î, learned archery from him, and then slew him, that he might himself be the foremost archer in the kingdom;--see Mencius IV, ii, 24.]

{p. 37}

are straitened, and have lost their suppleness, but the situation is unsuitable for him, and he cannot display his agility. And now when I dwell under a benighted ruler, and seditious ministers, how is it possible for me not to be in distress? My case might afford an illustration of the cutting out the heart of Pî-kan[1]!'

7. When Confucius was reduced to great distress between Khän and Khâi, and for seven days he had no cooked food to eat, he laid hold of a decayed tree with his left hand, and with his right hand tapped it with a decayed branch, singing all the while the ode of Piâo-shih[2] . He had his instrument, but the notes were not marked on it. There was a noise, but no blended melody. The sound of the wood and the voice of the man came together like the noise of the plough through the ground, yet suitably to the feelings of the disciples around. Yen Hui, who was standing upright, with his hands crossed on his breast, rolled his eyes round to observe him. Kung-nî, fearing that Hui would go to excess in manifesting how he honoured himself, or be plunged in sorrow through his love for him, said to him, 'Hui, not to receive (as evils) the inflictions of Heaven is easy; not to receive (as benefits) the favours of men is difficult. There is no beginning which was not an end. The Human and the Heavenly may be one

[1. 'A spurious paragraph, no doubt.' Lin Hsî-kung thus concludes what he has to say on this paragraph; but it is not without its interest and lessons.

2. I do not know who this was, nor what his ode or air was. Lû Teh-ming read the character ###, and says that Piâo-shih was one of the old royal Tîs who did nothing. In all my texts it is wrongly printed with three ###.]

{p. 38}

and the same. Who, for instance, is it that is now singing[1]?' Hui said, 'I venture to ask how not to receive (as evils) the inflictions of Heaven is easy.' Kung-nî said, 'Hunger, thirst, cold, and heat, and having one's progress entirely blocked up;--these are the doings of Heaven and Earth, necessary incidents in the revolutions of things. They are occurrences of which we say that we will pass on (composedly) along with them. The minister of another does not dare to refuse his commands; and if he who is discharging the duty of a minister feels it necessary to act thus, how much more should we wait with case on the commands of Heaven[2]!'

'What do you mean by saying that not to receive (as benefits) the favours of men is difficult?' Kung-nî said, 'As soon as one is employed in office, he gets forward in all directions; rank and emolument come to him together, and without end. But these advantages do not come from one's self;--it is my appointed lot to have such external good. The superior man is not a robber; the man of worth is no filcher;--if I prefer such things, what am I[3]? Hence it is said, "There is no bird wiser than the swallow." Where its eye lights on a place that is not suitable for it, it does not give it a second glance. Though it may drop the food from its

[1. This question arose out of the previous statement that man and Heaven might be one,--acting with the same spontaneity.

2. Confucius recognises here, as he often does, a power beyond his own, 'his appointed lot,' what we call destiny, to which the Tâo requires submission. This comes very near to our idea of God.

3. Human gifts had such an attraction, that they tended to take from man his heavenly spontaneity; and were to be eschewed, or received only with great caution.]

{p. 39}

mouth, it abandons it, and hurries off. It is afraid of men, and yet it stealthily takes up its dwelling by his; finding its protection in the altars of the Land and Grain[1].

'What do you mean by saying that there is no beginning which was not an end?' Kung-nî said, 'The change--rise and dissolution--of all things (continually) goes on, but we do not know who it is that maintains and continues the process. How do we know when any one begins? How do we know when he will end? We have simply to wait for it, and nothing more[2].'

'And what do you mean by saying that the Human and the Heavenly are one and the same?' Kung-nî said, 'Given man, and you have Heaven; given Heaven, and you still have Heaven (and nothing more). That man can not have Heaven is owing to the limitation of his nature'. The sagely man quietly passes away with his body, and there is an end of it.'

8. As Kwang Kâu was rambling in the park of Tiâo-ling [4] he saw a strange bird which came from the south. Its wings were seven cubits in width, and

[1. What is said here about the swallow is quite obscure. Hsî-kung says that all the old attempts to explain it are ridiculous, and then propounds an ingenious one of his own; but I will leave the passage with my reader to deal with it as he best can.

2. Compare with this how in Book XVIII we find Kwang-dze singing by the dead body of his wife.

3. That man is man and not Heaven is simply from the limitation of his nature,--his 'appointed lot.'

4. Tâo-ling might be translated 'Eagle Mount.' Where it was I do not know; perhaps the name originated with Kwang-dze, and thus has become semi-historical.]

{p. 40}

its eyes were large, an inch in circuit. It touched the forehead of Kâu as it passed him, and lighted in a grove of chestnut trees. 'What bird is this?' said he, 'with such great wings not to go on! and with such large eyes not to see me!' He lifted up his skirts, and hurried with his cross-bow, waiting for (an opportunity to shoot) it. (Meanwhile) he saw a cicada, which had just alighted in a beautiful shady spot, and forgot its (care for its) body. (just then), a preying mantis raised its feelers, and pounced on the cicada, in its eagerness for its prey, (also) forgetting (its care for) its body; while the strange bird took advantage of its opportunity to secure them both, in view of that gain forgetting its true (instinct of preservation)[1]. Kwang Kâu with an emotion of pity, said, 'Ah! so it is that things bring evil on one another, each of these creatures invited its own calamity.' (With this) he put away his cross-bow, and was hurrying away back, when the forester pursued him with terms of reproach.

When he returned and went into his house, he did not appear in his courtyard[2] for three months[2]. (When he came out), Lan Zü[3] (his disciple) asked him, saying, 'Master, why have you for this some time avoided the courtyard so much?' Kwang-dze replied, 'I was guarding my person, and forgot myself; I was looking at turbid water, till I

[1. Kwang-dze might now have shot the bird, but we like him the better for letting it alone.

2. So then, masters of schools, like Kwang-dze, received and taught their disciples in the courtyard of their house;--in China as elsewhere. For three 'months,' it is conjectured, we should read three 'days.'

3. The disciple Lan Zü appears here, but not, so far as I know, elsewhere.]

{p. 41}

mistook the clear pool. And moreover I have heard the Master say', "Going where certain customs prevail, you should follow those customs." I was walking about in the park of Tiâo-ling, and forgot myself. A strange bird brushed past my forehead, and went flying about in the grove of chestnuts, where it forgot the true (art of preserving itself). The forester of the chestnut grove thought that I was a fitting object for his reproach. These are the reasons why I have avoided the courtyard.'

9. Yang-dze, having gone to Sung, passed the night in a lodging-house, the master of which had two concubines;--one beautiful, the other ugly[2]. The ugly one was honoured, however, and the beautiful one contemned. Yang-dze asked the reason, and a little boy of the house replied, 'The beauty knows her beauty, and we do not recognise it. The ugly one knows her ugliness, and we do not recognise it.' Yang-dze said, 'Remember it, my disciples. Act virtuously, and put away the practice of priding yourselves on your virtue. If you do this, where can you go to that you will not be loved[3]?'

[1. Who was this 'Master?'

2. The story here is found in Lieh-dze 11, 15 a, b. The Yang-dze is there Yang Kû, against whom Mencius so often directed his arguments.

3. See the greater part of this paragraph in Prémare's 'Notitia Linguae Sinicae,' p. 200, with his remarks on the style.]

{p. 42}



Thien Dze-fang[1].

1. Thien Dze-fang, sitting in attendance on the marquis Wän of Wei[2], often quoted (with approbation) the words of Khî Kung[3]. The marquis said, 'Is Khî Kung your preceptor?' Dze-fang replied, 'No. He only belongs to the same neighbourhood. In speaking about the Tâo, his views are often correct, and therefore I quote them as I do.' The marquis went on, 'Then have you no preceptor?' 'I have.' And who is he? He is Tung-kwo Shun-dze[4].' 'And why, my Master, have I never heard you quote his words?' Dze-fang replied, 'He is a man who satisfies the true (ideal of humanity)[5]; a man in appearance, but (having the mind of) Heaven. Void of any thought of himself, he accommodates himself to others, and nourishes the true ideal that belongs to him. With all his purity, he is forbearing to others. Where they are without the Tâo, he rectifies his demeanour, so that they understand it, and in consequence their own ideas melt

[1. See vol. xxxix, pp. 151, 152.

2. B.C. 424-387.

3. Some well-known worthy of Wei.

4. A greater worthy still. He must have lived near the outside suburban wall of the capital, and his residence became a sort of surname.

5. The Human and the Heavenly were blended in his personality.]

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away and disappear. How should one like me be fit to quote his words?'

When Dze-fang went out, the marquis Wän continued in a state of dumb amazement all the day. He then called Lung Lî-khin, and said to him, 'How far removed from us is the superior man of complete virtue! Formerly I thought the words of the sages and wise men, and the practice of benevolence and righteousness, to be the utmost we could reach to. Since I have heard about the preceptor of Dze-fang, my body is all unstrung, and I do not wish to move, and my mouth is closed up, and I do not wish to speak;--what I have learned has been only a counterfeit of the truth[1]. Yes, (the possession of Wei) has been an entanglement to me.'

2. Wän-po Hsüeh-dze[2], on his way to Khï, stayed some time in Lû, where some persons of the state begged to have an interview with him. He refused them, saying, 'I have heard that the superior men of these Middle States[3] understand the (subjects of) ceremony and righteousness, but are deplorably ignorant of the minds of men. I do not wish to see them.' He went on to Khî; and on his way back (to the south), he again stayed in Lû, when the same persons begged as before for an interview. He then said, 'Formerly they asked to see me, and now again they seek an interview. They will afford me

[1. So the Khang-hsî dictionary defines the phrase;--'a wooden image made of earth,' says Lû Shû-kih.

2. A Tâoist of note from some region in the south, perhaps from Khû, having his own share of the Tâoistic contempt for knowledge and culture.

3. Probably Lû and the northern states grouped closely round the royal domain.]

{p. 44}

some opportunity of bringing out my sentiments.' He went out accordingly and saw the visitors, and came in again with a sigh. Next day the same thing occurred, and his servant said to him, 'How is it that whenever you see those visitors, you are sure to come in again sighing?' 'I told you before,' was the reply, 'that the people of these Middle States understand (the subjects of) ceremony and righteousness, but are deplorably ignorant of the minds of men. Those men who have just seen me, as they came in and went out would describe, one a circle and another a square, and in their easy carriage would be like, one a dragon and another a tiger. They remonstrated with me as sons (with their fathers), and laid down the way for me as fathers (for their sons). It was this which made me sigh.'

Kung-nî saw the man, but did not speak a word to him. Dze-lû said, 'You have wished, Sir, to see this Wän-po Hsüeh-dze for a long time; what is the reason that when you have seen him, you have not spoken a word?' Kung-nî replied, 'As soon as my eyes lighted on that man, the Tâo in him was apparent. The situation did not admit of a word being spoken.'

3. Yen Yüan asked Kung-nî, saying, 'Master, when you pace quietly along, I also pace along; when you go more quickly, I also do the same; when you gallop, I also gallop; but when you race along and spurn the dust, then I can only stand and look, and keep behind you'.' The Master said, 'Hui, what do you mean?' The reply was, 'In saying that when you, Master, pace quietly along, I also pace

[1. They are both supposed to be on horseback.]

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along," I mean[1] that when you speak, I also speak. By saying, "When you go more quickly, I also do the same," I mean I that when you reason, I also reason. By saying, "When you gallop, I also gallop," I mean[1] that when you speak of the Way, I also speak of the Way; but by saying, "When you race along and spurn the dust, then I can only stare, and keep behind you," I am thinking how though you do not speak, yet all men believe you; though you are no partisan, yet all parties approve your catholicity; and though you sound no instrument, yet people all move on harmoniously before you, while (all the while) I do not know how all this comes about; and this is all which my words are intended to express[2].'

Kung-nî said, 'But you must try and search the matter out. Of all causes for sorrow there is none so great as the death of the mind;--the death of man's (body) is only next to it. The sun comes forth in the east, and sets in the extreme West;--all things have their position determined by these two points. All that have eyes and feet wait for this (sun), and then proceed to do what they have to do. When this comes forth, they appear in their places; when it sets, they disappear. It is so with all things. They have that for which they wait, and (on its arrival) they die; they have that for which they wait, and then (again) they live. When once I receive my frame thus completed, I remain unchanged, awaiting the consummation of my course.

[1. In these three cases the ### of the text should be ###.

2. So Hui is made to represent the master as a mental Thaumathurgist, and Confucius is made to try to explain the whole thing to him;--but not to my mind successfully. Still a distinction is maintained between the mind and the body.]

{p. 46}

I move as acted on by things, day and night without cessation, and I do not know when I will come to an end. Clearly I am here a completed frame, and even one who (fancies that he) knows what is appointed cannot determine it beforehand. I am in this way daily passing on, but all day long I am communicating my views to you; and now, as we are shoulder to shoulder you fail (to understand me);--is it not matter for lamentation? You are able in a measure to set forth what I more clearly set forth; but that is passed away, and you look for it, as if it were still existing, just as if you were looking for a horse in the now empty place where it was formerly exhibited for sale. You have very much forgotten my service to you, and I have very much forgotten wherein I served you. But nevertheless why should you account this such an evil? What you forget is but my old self; that which cannot be forgotten remains with me.'

4. Confucius went to see Lâo Tan, and arrived just as he had completed the bathing of his head, and was letting his dishevelled hair get dry. There be was, motionless, and as if there were not another man in the world[1]. Confucius waited quietly; and, when in a little time he was introduced, he said, 'Were my eyes dazed? Is it really you? Just now, your body, Sir, was like the stump of a rotten tree. You looked as if you had no thought of anything, as if you had left the society of men, and were standing in the solitude (of yourself).' Lâo Tan replied, 'I was enjoying myself in thinking about the commencement

[1. He was in the Tâoistic trance, like Nan-kwo Dze-khî, at the beginning of the second Book.]

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of things[1].' 'What do you mean?' 'My mind is so cramped, that I hardly know it; my tongue is so tied that I cannot tell it; but I will try to describe it to you as nearly as I can. When the state of Yin was perfect, all was cold and severe; when the state of Yang was perfect, all was turbulent and agitated. The coldness and severity came forth from Heaven; the turbulence and agitation issued from Earth. The two states communicating together, a harmony ensued and things were produced. Some one regulated and controlled this, but no one has seen his form. Decay and growth; fulness and emptiness; darkness and light; the changes of the sun and the transformations of the moon:--these are brought about from day to day; but no one sees the process of production. Life has its origin from which it springs, and death has its place from which it returns. Beginning and ending go on in mutual contrariety without any determinable commencement, and no one knows bow either comes to an end. If we disallow all this, who originates and presides over all these phenomena?'

Confucius said, 'I beg to ask about your enjoyment in these thoughts.' Lâo Tan replied, 'The

[1. This 'commencement of things' was not the equivalent of 'our creation out of nothing,' for Mo Tan immediately supposes the existence of the primary ether in its twofold state, as Yin and Y an g; and also of Heaven and Earth, as a twofold Power working, under some regulation and control, yet invisible; that is, under the Tâo. In the same way the process of beginning and ending, growth and decay, life and death go on, no one knows how, or how long. And the contemplation of all this is the cause of unceasing delight to the Perfect man, the possessor of the Tâo. Death is a small matter, merely as a change of feature; and Confucius acknowledges his immeasurable inferiority to Lâo-dze.]

{p. 48}

comprehension of this is the most admirable and the most enjoyable (of all acquisitions). The getting of the most admirable and the exercise of the thoughts in what is the most enjoyable, constitutes what we call the Perfect man.' Confucius said, 'I should like to hear the method of attaining to it.' The reply was, 'Grass-eating animals do not dislike to change their pastures; creatures born in the water do not dislike to change their waters. They make a small change, but do not lose what is the great and regular requirement (of their nature); joy, anger, sadness, and delight do not enter into their breasts (in connexion with such events). Now the space under the sky is occupied by all things in their unity. When they possess that unity and equally share it, then the four limbs and hundred members of their body are but so much dust and dirt, while death and life, their ending and beginning, are but as the succession of day and night, which cannot disturb their enjoyment; and how much less will they be troubled by gains and losses, by calamity and happiness! Those who renounce the paraphernalia of rank do it as if they were casting away so much mud; they know that they are themselves more honourable than those paraphernalia. The honour belonging to one's self is not lost by any change (of condition). Moreover, a myriad transformations may take place before the end of them is reached. What is there in all this sufficient to trouble the mind? Those who have attained to the Tâo understand the subject.'

Confucius said, 'O Master, your virtue is equal to that of Heaven and Earth, and still I must borrow

{p. 49}

(some of your) perfect words (to aid me) in the cultivation of my mind. Who among the superior men of antiquity could give such expression to them?' Lâo Tan replied, 'Not so. Look at the spring, the water of which rises and overflows; it does nothing, but it naturally acts so. So with the perfect man and his virtue;--he does not cultivate it, and nothing evades its influence. He is like heaven which is high of itself, like earth which is solid of itself, like the sun and moon which shine of themselves;--what need is there to cultivate it?'

Confucius went out and reported the conversation to Yen Hui, saying, 'In the (knowledge of the) Tâo am I any better than an animalcule in vinegar? But for the Master's lifting the veil from me, I should not have known the grand perfection of Heaven and Earth.'

5. At an interview of Kwang-dze with duke Âi[1] of Lû, the duke said, 'There are many of the Learned class in Lû; but few of them can be compared with you, Sir.' Kwang-dze replied, 'There are few Learned men in Lû.' 'Everywhere in Lû,' rejoined the duke, 'you see men wearing the dress of the Learned[2];--how can you say that they are few?' 'I have heard,' said Kwang-dze, 'that those of them who wear round caps know the times of heaven; that those who wear square shoes know the contour of the ground; and that those who saunter about with semicircular stones at their

[1. Duke Âi of Lû died in B.C. 468, a century and more before the birth of Kwang-dze. On that, as well as on other grounds, the paragraph cannot be genuine.

2. Compare the thirty-eighth Book of the Lî Kî, where Confucius denies that there was any dress peculiar to the scholar.]

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girdle-pendents settle matters in dispute as they come before them. But superior men who are possessed of such knowledge will not be found wearing the dress, and it does not follow that those who wear the dress possess the knowledge. If your Grace think otherwise, why not issue a notification through the state, that it shall be a capital offence to wear the dress without possessing the knowledge.' On this the duke issued such a notification, and in five days, throughout all Lû, there was no one who dared to wear the dress of the Learned. There was only one old man who came and stood in it at the duke's gate. The duke instantly called him in, and questioned him about the affairs of the state, when he talked about a thousand points and ten thousand divergences from them. Kwang-dze said, 'When the state of Lû can thus produce but one man of the Learned class, can he be said to be many?'

6. The ideas of rank and emolument did not enter the mind of Pâi-lî Hsî[1], and so he became a cattle-feeder, and his cattle were all in fine condition. This made duke Mû of Khin forget the meanness of his position, and put the government (of his state) into his hands. Neither life nor death entered into the mind of (Shun), the Lord of Yü, and therefore he was able to influence others[2].

7. The ruler Yüan[3] of Sung wishing to have a map

[1. Pâi-lî Hsî, a remarkable character of the seventh century B.C., who rose to be chief minister to Mû, the earl (or duke) of Khin, the last of the five Leading Princes of the kingdom. Mû died in B.C. 621. Mencius has much to say of Pâi-lî Hsî.

2. Shun's parents wished to kill him; but that did not trouble his mind; his filial piety even affected them.

3. His first year as duke of Sung was B.C. 530. The point of the story is not clear.]

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drawn, the masters of the pencil all came (to undertake the task). Having received his instructions and made their bows, they stood, licking their pencils and preparing their ink. Half their number, however, remained outside. There was one who came late, with an air of indifference, and did not hurry forward. When he had received his instructions and made his bow, he did not keep standing, but proceeded to his shed. The duke sent a man to see him, and there he was, with his upper garment off, sitting cross-legged, and nearly naked. The ruler said, 'He is the man; he is a true draughtsman.'

8. King Wän was (once) looking about him at Zang[1], when he saw an old man fishing[2]. But his fishing was no fishing. It was not the fishing of one whose business is fishing. He was always fishing (as if he had no object in the occupation). The king wished to raise him to office, and put the government into his hands, but was afraid that such a step would give dissatisfaction to his great ministers, his uncles, and cousins. He then wished to dismiss the man altogether from his mind, but he could not bear the thought that his people should be without (such a) Heaven (as their Protector). On this, (next) morning, he called together his great officers, and said to them, 'Last night, I dreamt that I saw a good man, with a dark complexion and a

[1. Where Zang was cannot be told.

2. The old fisherman here was, no doubt, the first marquis of Khî, after the establishment of the dynasty of Kâu, known by various names, as Lü Shang, Thâi-kung Wang, and Kiang Dze-yâ. He did much for the new rule, but his connexion with kings Wän and Wû is a mass of fables. The fishing as if he were not fishing betokened in him the aimlessness of the Tâo.]

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beard, riding on a piebald horse, one half of whose hoofs were red, who commanded me, saying, "Lodge your government in the hands of the old man of Zang; and perhaps the evils of your people will be cured."' The great officers said eagerly, 'It was the king, your father.' King Wän said, 'Let us then submit the proposal to the tortoise-shell.' They replied, 'It is the order of your father. Let not your majesty think of any other. Why divine about it?' (The king) then met the old man of, Zang, and committed the government to him. The statutes and laws were not changed by him; not a one-sided order (of his own) was issued; but when the king made a survey of the kingdom after three years, he found that the officers had destroyed the plantations (which harboured banditti), and dispersed their occupiers, that the superintendents of the official departments did not plume themselves on their successes, and that no unusual grain measures were allowed within the different states[1]. When the officers had destroyed the dangerous plantations and dispersed their occupants, the highest value was set on the common interests; when the chiefs of departments did not plume themselves on their successes, the highest value was set on the common business; when unusual grain measures did not enter the different states, the different princes had no jealousies. On this king Min made the old man his Grand Preceptor, and asked him, with his own face to the north, whether his government might be extended to all the kingdom. The old

[1. That is, that all combinations formed to resist and warp the course of justice had been put an end to.]

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man looked perplexed and gave no reply, but with aimless look took his leave. In the morning he had issued his orders, and at night he had gone his way; nor was he heard of again all his life. Yen Yüan questioned Confucius, saying, 'Was even king Wän unequal to determine his course? What had he to do with resorting to a dream?' Kung-nî replied, 'Be silent and do not say a word! King Win was complete in everything. What have you to do with criticising him? He only had recourse (to the dream) to meet a moment's difficulty.'

9. Lieh Yü-khâu was exhibiting his archery' to Po-hwän Wû-zän[2]. Having drawn the bow to its full extent, with a cup of water placed on his elbow, he let fly. As the arrow was discharged, another was put in its place; and as that was sent off, a third was ready on the string. All the while he stood like a statue. Po-hwän Wû-zän said, 'That is the shooting of an archer, but not of one who shoots without thinking about his shooting. Let me go up with you to the top of a high mountain, treading with you among the tottering rocks, till we arrive at the brink of a precipice, 800 cubits deep, and (I will then see) if you can shoot.' On this they went up a high mountain, making their way among the tottering rocks, till they came to the brink of a precipice 800 cubits deep. Then Wû-zän turned round and walked backwards, till his feet were two-thirds

[1. This must be the meaning of the ### ‘for.' The whole story is found in Lieh-dze, II, p. 5. From Lieh's Book VIII, p. 2, we learn that Lieh-dze's teacher in archery was Yin Hsî, the warden of the pass famous in the history of Lâo-dze.

2. Mentioned in Book V, par. 2.]

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of their length outside the edge, and beckoned Yü-khâu to come forward. He, however, had fallen prostrate on the ground, with the sweat pouring down to his heels. Then the other said, 'The Perfect man looks up to the azure sky above, or dives down to the yellow springs beneath, or soars away to the eight ends of the universe, without any change coming over his spirit or his breath. But now the trepidation of your mind appears in your dazed eyes; your inward feeling of peril is extreme!'

10. Kien Wû asked Sun-shû Âo, saying, 'You, Sir, were thrice chief minister, and did not feel elated; you were thrice dismissed from that position, without manifesting any sorrow. At first I was in doubt about you, (but I am not now, since) I see how regularly and quietly the breath comes through your nostrils. How is it that you exercise your mind?' Sun-shû Âo replied, 'In what do I surpass other men? When the position came to me, I thought it should not be rejected; when it was taken away, I thought it could not be retained. I considered that the getting or losing it did not make me what I was, and was no occasion for any manifestation of sorrow;--that was all. In what did I surpass other men? And moreover, I did not know whether the honour of it belonged to the dignity, or to myself. If it belonged to the dignity, it was nothing to me; if it belonged to me, it had nothing

[1. Sun-shû Âo;--see Mencius VI, ii, 15. He was, no doubt, a good and able man, chief minister to king Kwang of Khû. The legends or edifying stories about him are many; but Kwang-dze, I think, is the author of his being thrice raised and thrice dismissed from office.]

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to do with the dignity. While occupied with these uncertainties, and looking round in all directions, what leisure had I to take knowledge of whether men honoured me or thought me mean?'

Kung-nî heard of all this, and said, 'The True men of old could not be fully described by the wisest, nor be led into excess by the most beautiful, nor be forced by the most violent robber. Neither Fû-hsî nor Hwang-Tî could compel them to be their friends. Death and life are indeed great considerations, but they could make no change in their (true) self; and how much less could rank and emolument do so? Being such, their spirits might pass over the Thâi mountain and find it no obstacle to them[1]; they might enter the greatest gulphs, and not be wet by them; they might occupy the lowest and smallest positions without being distressed by them. Theirs was the fulness of heaven and earth; the more that they gave to others, the more they had.'

The king of Khû and the ruler of Fan[2] were sitting together. After a little while, the attendants of the king said, 'Fan has been destroyed three times.' The ruler of Fan rejoined, 'The destruction of Fan has not been sufficient to destroy what we had that was most deserving to be preserved.' Now,

[1. It is difficult to see why this should be predicated of the ‘spirits' of the True men.

2. Fan was a small state, held at one time by descendants of the famous duke of Kâu;--see the Zo Khwan, I, vii, 6; V, xxiv, 2. But we do not know what had been the relations between the powerful Khû and the feeble Fan, which gave rise to and could explain the remarks made at the entertainment, more honourable to Fan than to Khû.]

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if the destruction of Fan had not been sufficient to destroy that which it had most deserving to be preserved, the preservation of Khû had not been sufficient to preserve that in it most deserving to be preserved. Looking at the matter from this point of view, Fan had not begun to be destroyed, and Khû had not begun to be preserved.

{p. 57}



Kih Pei Yû, or 'Knowledge Rambling in the North[I].'

1. Knowledge[2] had rambled northwards to the region of the Dark Water[3], where he ascended the height of Imperceptible Slope[3], when it happened that he met with Dumb Inaction[2] . Knowledge addressed him, saying, 'I wish to ask you some questions:--By what process of thought and anxious consideration do we get to know the Tâo? Where should we dwell and what should we do to find our rest in the Tâo? From what point should we start and what path should we pursue to make the Tâo our own?' He asked these three questions, but Dumb Inaction[2] gave him no reply. Not only did he not answer, but he did not know how to answer.

Knowledge[2], disappointed by the fruitlessness of his questions, returned to the south of the Bright

[1. See vol. xxxix, p. 152.

2. All these names are metaphorical, having more or less to do with the qualities of the Tâo, and are used as the names of personages, devoted to the pursuit of it. It is difficult to translate the name Khwang Khü (###). An old reading is ###, which Medhurst explains by 'Bent or Crooked Discourse.' 'Blurter,' though not an elegant English term, seems to express the idea our author would convey by it. Hwang-Tî is different from the other names, but we cannot regard him as here a real personage.

3. These names of places are also metaphorical and Tâoistic.]

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Water[1], and ascended the height of the End of Doubt[1] where he saw Heedless Blurter, to whom he put the same questions, and who replied, 'Ah! I know, and will tell you.' But while he was about to speak, he forgot what he wanted to say.

Knowledge, (again) receiving no answer to his questions, returned to the palace of the Tî[2], where he saw Hwang-Tî[3], and put the questions to him. Hwang-Tî said, 'To exercise no thought and no anxious consideration is the first step towards knowing the Tâo; to dwell nowhere and do nothing is the first step towards resting in the Tâo; to start from nowhere and pursue no path is the first step towards making the Tâo your own.'

Knowledge then asked Hwang-Tî, saying, 'I and you know this; those two did not know it; which of us is right?' The reply was, 'Dumb Inaction[3] is truly right; Heedless Blurter has an appearance of being so; I and you are not near being so. (As it is said), "Those who know (the Tâo) do not speak of it; those who speak of it do not know it[4];" and "Hence the sage conveys his instructions without the use of speech[4]." The Tâo cannot be made ours by constraint; its characteristics will not come to us (at our call). Benevolence may be practised; Righteousness may be partially attended to; by Ceremonies men impose on one another. Hence it

[1. See note 3, on preceding page.

Tî might seem to be used here for 'God,' but its juxtaposition with Hwang-Tî is against our translating it so.

3. See note 2, on preceding page.

4. See the Tâo Teh King, chaps. 56 and 2. Kwang-dze is quoting, no doubt, these two passages, as he vaguely intimates I think by the ###, with which the sentence commences.]

{p. 59}

is said, "When the Tâo was lost, its Characteristics appeared. When its Characteristics were lost, Benevolence appeared. When Benevolence was lost, Righteousness appeared. When Righteousness was lost, Ceremonies appeared. Ceremonies are but (the unsubstantial) flowers of the Tâo, and the commencement of disorder[l]." Hence (also it is further said), "He who practises the Tâo, daily diminishes his doing. He diminishes it and again diminishes it, till he arrives at doing nothing. Having arrived at this non-inaction, there is nothing that he does not do[1]." Here now there is something, a regularly fashioned utensil;--if you wanted to make it return to the original condition of its materials, would it not be difficult to make it do so? Could any but the Great Man accomplish this easily[2]?

'Life is the follower of death, and death is the predecessor of life; but who knows the Arranger (of this connexion between them)[3]? The life is due to the collecting of the breath. When that is collected, there is life; when it is dispersed, there is death. Since death and life thus attend on each other, why should I account (either of) them an evil?

'Therefore all things go through one and the same experience. (Life) is accounted beautiful because it is spirit-like and wonderful, and death is accounted ugly because of its foetor and putridity. But the foetid and putrid is transformed again into the spirit-like and wonderful, and the spirit-like and wonderful is transformed again into the foetid and

[1. See the Tâo Teh King, chaps. 38 and 48.

2. This sentence is metaphorical of the Tâo, whose spell is broken by the intrusion of Knowledge.

3. This 'Arranger' is the Tâo.]

{p. 60}

putrid. Hence it is said, "All under the sky there is one breath of life, and therefore the sages prized that unity[1],"'

Knowledge[2] said to Hwang-Tî[2], 'I asked Dumb Inaction[2], and he did not answer me. Not only did he not answer me, but he did not know how to answer me. I asked Heedless Blurter, and while he wanted to tell me, he yet did not do so. Not only did he not tell me, but while he wanted to tell me, he forgot all about my questions. Now I have asked you, and you knew (all about them);--why (do you say that) you are not near doing so?' Hwang-Tî replied, 'Dumb Inaction[2] was truly right, because he did not know the thing. Heedless Blurter[2] was nearly right, because he forgot it. I and you are not nearly right, because we know it.' Heedless Blurter[2] heard of (all this), and considered that Hwang-Tî[2] knew how to express himself (on the subject).

2. (The operations of) Heaven and Earth proceed in the most admirable way, but they say nothing about them; the four seasons observe the clearest laws, but they do not discuss them; all things have their complete and distinctive constitutions, but they say nothing about them[3].

The sages trace out the admirable operations of Heaven and Earth, and reach to and understand the distinctive constitutions of all things; and thus it is that the Perfect Man (is said to) do nothing and the Greatest Sage to originate nothing, such language showing that they look to Heaven and Earth as

[1. have not been able to trace this quotation to its source.

2. See note 2, p. 57.

3. Compare Analects XVII, xix, 3.]

{p. 61}

their model[1]. Even they, with their spirit-like and most exquisite intelligence, as well as all the tribes that undergo their transformations, the dead and the living, the square and the round, do not understand their root and origin, but nevertheless they all from the oldest time by it preserve their being.

Vast as is the space included within the six cardinal points, it all (and all that it contains) lies within (this twofold root of Heaven and Earth); small as is an autumn hair, it is indebted to this for the completion of its form. All things beneath the sky, now rising, now descending, ever continue the same through this. The Yin and Yang, and the four seasons revolve and move by it, each in its proper order. Now it seems to be lost in obscurity, but it continues; now it seems to glide away, and have no form, but it is still spirit-like. All things are nourished by it, without their knowing it. This is what is called the Root and Origin; by it we may obtain a view of what we mean by Heaven[2].

3, Nieh Khüeh[3] asked about the Tâo from Phei-î who replied,' If you keep your body as it should be, and look only at the one thing, the Harmony of Heaven will come to you. Call in your knowledge, and make your measures uniform, and the spiritual (belonging to you) will come and lodge with you; the Attributes (of the Tâo) will be your beauty, and the Tâo (itself) will be your dwelling-place. You will have the simple look of a new-born calf, and

[1. Compare the Tâo Teh King, ch. 25.

2. The binomial 'Heaven and Earth' here gives place to the one term 'Heaven,' which is often a synonym of Tâo.

3. See his character in Book XII, par. 5, where Phei-î also is mentioned.]

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will not seek to know the cause (of your being what you are).' Phei-î had not finished these words when the other dozed off into a sleep.

Phei-î was greatly pleased, and walked away, singing as he went,

Like stump of rotten tree his frame,

Like lime when slaked his mind became[1]. Real is his wisdom, solid, true,

Nor cares what's hidden to pursue. O dim and dark his aimless mind! No one from him can counsel find. What sort of man is he?'

4. Shun asked (his attendant) Khäng[2], saying, 'Can I get the Tâo and hold it as mine?' The reply was, 'Your body is not your own to hold; how then can you get and hold the Tâo?' Shun resumed, 'If my body be not mine to possess and hold, who holds it?' Khäng said, 'It is the bodily form entrusted to you by Heaven and Earth. Life is not yours to hold. It is the blended harmony (of the Yin and Yang), entrusted to you by Heaven and Earth. Your nature, constituted as it is, is not yours to hold. It is entrusted to you by Heaven and Earth to act in accordance with it. Your grandsons and sons are not yours to hold. They are the exuviae[3] entrusted to you by Heaven and Earth. Therefore when we walk, we should not know where we are going; when we stop and rest, we should not know what to occupy ourselves with

[1. See the account of Nan-kwo Dze-khî in Book II, par. 1.

2. Not the name of a man, but an office.

3. The term in the text denotes the cast-off skin or shell of insects, snakes, and crabs. See the account of death and life in par. 1.]

{p. 63}

when we eat, we should not know the taste of our food;--all is done by the strong Yang influence of Heaven and Earth[1]. How then can you get (the Tâo), and hold it as your own?'

5. Confucius asked Lao Tan, saying, 'Being at leisure to-day, I venture to ask you about the Perfect Tâo.' Lâo Tan replied, 'You must, as by fasting and vigil, clear and purge your mind, wash your spirit white as snow, and sternly repress your knowledge. The subject of the Tâo is deep, and difficult to describe;--I will give you an outline of its simplest attributes.

'The Luminous was produced from the Obscure; the Multiform from the Unembodied; the Spiritual from the Tâo; and the bodily from the seminal essence. After this all things produced one another from their bodily organisations. Thus it is that those which have nine apertures are born from the womb, and those with eight from eggs[2]

But their coming leaves no trace, and their going no monument; they enter by no door; they dwell in no apartment[3]:--they are in a vast arena reaching in all directions. They who search for and find (the Tâo) in this are strong in their limbs, sincere and far-reaching in their thinking, acute in their hearing, and clear in their seeing. They exercise their minds without being toiled; they respond to everything aright without regard to place or circumstance. Without this heaven would not be high, nor earth

[1. It is an abstruse point why only the Yang is mentioned here, and described as ‘strong.'

2. It is not easy to see the pertinence of this illustration.

3. Hû Wän-ying says, 'With this one word our author sweeps away the teaching of Purgatorial Sufferings.']

{p. 64}

broad; the sun and moon would not move, and nothing would flourish:--such is the operation of the Tâo.

'Moreover, the most extensive knowledge does not necessarily know it; reasoning will not make men wise in it;--the sages have decided against both these methods. However you try to add to it, it admits of no increase; however you try to take from it, it admits of no diminution;--this is what the sages maintain about it. How deep it is, like the sea! How grand it is, beginning again when it has come to an end! If it carried along and sustained all things, without being overburdened or weary, that would be like the way of the superior man, merely an external operation; when all things go to it, and find their dependence in it;--this is the true character of the Tâo.

'Here is a man (born) in one of the middle states[1]. He feels himself independent both of the Yin and Yang[2], and dwells between heaven and earth; only for the present a mere man, but he will return to his original source. Looking at him in his origin, when his life begins, we have (but) a gelatinous substance in which the breath is collecting. Whether his life be long or his death early, how short is the space between them! It is but the name for a moment of time, insufficient to play the part of a good Yâo or a bad Kieh in.

'The fruits of trees and creeping plants have their distinctive characters, and though the relationships

[1. The commentators suppose that by ‘the man' here there is intended 'a sage;' and they would seem to be correct.

2. Compare the second sentence in the Tâo Teh King, ch. 42.]

{p. 65}

of men, according to which they are classified, are troublesome, the sage, when he meets with them, does not set himself in opposition to them, and when he has passed through them, he does not seek to retain them; he responds to them in their regular harmony according to his virtue; and even when he accidentally comes across any of them, he does so according to the Tâo. It was thus that the Tîs flourished, thus that the kings arose.

'Men's life between heaven and earth is like a white[1] colt's passing a crevice, and suddenly disappearing. As with a plunge and an effort they all come forth; easily and quietly they all enter again. By a transformation they live, and by another transformation they die. Living things are made sad (by death), and mankind grieve for it; but it is (only) the removal of the bow from its sheath, and the emptying the natural satchel of its contents. There may be some confusion amidst the yielding to the change; but the intellectual and animal souls are taking their leave, and the body will follow them:--This is the Great Returning home.

'That the bodily frame came from incorporeity, and will return to the same, is what all men in common know, and what those who are on their way to (know) it need not strive for. This is what the multitudes of men discuss together. Those whose (knowledge) is complete do not discuss it;--such discussion shows that their (knowledge) is not complete. Even the most clear-sighted do not meet

[1. Why is it the colt here is 'white?' Is it to heighten the impression made by his speedy disappearing? or is it merely the adoption of the phrase from the Shih, II, iv, 2?]

{p. 66}

(with the Tâo);--it is better to be silent than to reason about it. The Tâo cannot be heard with the ears;--it is better to shut the ears than to try and hear it. This is what is called the Great Attainment.'

6. Tung-kwo Dze[1] asked Kwang-dze, saying, 'Where is what you call the Tâo to be found?' Kwang-dze replied, 'Everywhere.' The other said, 'Specify an instance of it. That will be more satisfactory.' 'It is here in this ant.' 'Give a lower instance.' 'It is in this panic grass.' 'Give me a still lower instance.' 'It is in this earthenware tile.' 'Surely that is the lowest instance?' 'It is in that excrement[2].' To this Tung-kwo Dze gave no reply.

Kwang-dze said, 'Your questions, my master, do not touch the fundamental point (of the Tâo). They remind me of the questions ad-dressed by the superintendents of the market to the inspector about examining the value of a pig by treading on it, and testing its weight as the foot descends lower and lower on the body[3]. You should not specify any particular thing. There is not a single thing without (the Tâo). So it is with the Perfect Tâo. And if we call it the Great (Tâo), it is just the same. There are the three terms,--"Complete," "All-embracing," "the Whole." These names are different,

[1. Perhaps the Tung-kwo Shun-dze of Bk. XXI, par. 1.

2. A contemptuous reply, provoked by Tung-kwo's repeated interrogation as to where the Tâo was to, be found, the only question being as to what it was.

3. We do not know the practices from which our author draws his illustrations here sufficiently to make out his meaning clearly. The signification of the characters ### and ### may be gathered indeed from the Î Lî, Books 7-9; but that is all.]

{p. 67}

but the reality (sought in them) is the same referring to the One thing[1].

'Suppose we were to try to roam about in the palace of No-where;--when met there, we might discuss (about the subject) without ever coming to an end. Or suppose we were to be together in (the region of) Non-action;--should we say that (the Tâo was) Simplicity and Stillness? or Indifference and Purity? or Harmony and Ease? My will would be aimless. If it went nowhere, I should not know where it had got to; if it went and came again, I should not know where it had stopped; if it went on going and coming, I should not know when the process would end. In vague uncertainty should I be in the vastest waste. Though I entered it with the greatest knowledge, I should not know how inexhaustible it was. That which makes things what they are has not the limit which belongs to things, and when we speak of things being limited, we mean that they are so in themselves. (The Tâo) is the limit of the unlimited, and the boundlessness of the unbounded.

'We speak of fulness and emptiness; of withering and decay. It produces fulness and emptiness, but is neither fulness nor emptiness; it produces withering and decay, but is neither withering nor decay. It produces the root and branches, but is neither root nor branch; it produces accumulation and dispersion, but is itself neither accumulated nor dispersed.'

7. A-ho Kan[2] and Shän Näng studied together

[1. The meaning of this other illustration is also very obscure to me; and much of what follows to the end of the paragraph.

2. We can hardly be said to know anything more of the first and third of these men than what is mentioned here.]

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under Läo-lung Kî. Shän Näng[1] was leaning forward on his stool, having shut the door and gone to sleep in the day time. At midday A-ho Kan pushed open the door and entered, saying, 'Lâo-lung is dead.' Shän Näng leant forward on his stool, laid hold of his staff and rose. Then he laid the staff aside with a clash, laughed and said, ‘That Heaven knew how cramped and mean, how arrogant and assuming I was, and therefore he has cast me off, and is dead. Now that there is no Master to correct my heedless words, it is simply for me to die!' Yen Kang, (who had come in) to condole, heard these words, and said, 'It is to him who embodies the Tâo that the superior men everywhere cling. Now you who do not understand so much as the tip of an autumn hair of it, not even the ten-thousandth part of the Tâo, still know how to keep hidden your heedless words about it and die;--how much more might he who embodied the Tâo do so! We look for it, and there is no form; we hearken for it, and there is no sound. When men try to discuss it, we call them dark indeed. When they discuss the Tâo, they misrepresent it.'

Hereupon Grand Purity[2] asked Infinitude[2], saying, 'Do you know the Tâo?' 'I do not know it,' was the reply. He then asked Do-nothing[2], Who replied, 'I know it.' 'Is your knowledge of it determined

[l. Shän Näng is well known, as coming in the chronological list between Fû-hsî and Hwang-Tî; and we are surprised that a higher place is not given to him among the Tâoist patriarchs than our author assigns to him here.

2. These names, like those in the first paragraph of the Book, are metaphorical, intended, no doubt, to set forth attributes of the Tâo, and to suggest to the reader what it is or what it is not.]

{p. 69}

by various points?' 'It is.' 'What are they?' Do-nothing[1] said, 'I know that the Tâo may be considered noble, and may be considered mean, that it may be bound and compressed, and that it may be dispersed and diffused. These are the marks by which I know it.' Grand Purity took the words of those two, and asked No-beginning[1], saying, 'Such were their replies; which was right? and which was wrong? Infinitude's saying that he did not know it? or Do-nothing's saying that he knew it?' No-beginning said, 'The "I do not know it" was profound, and the "I know it" was shallow. The former had reference to its internal nature; the latter to its external conditions. Grand Purity looked up and sighed, saying, 'Is "not to know it" then to know it? And is "to know it" not to know it? But who knows that he who does not know it (really) knows it?' No-beginning replied, 'The Tâo cannot be heard; what can be heard is not It. The Tâo cannot be seen; what can be seen is not It. The Tâo cannot be expressed in words; what can be expressed in words is not It. Do we know the Formless which gives form to form? In the same way the Tâo does not admit of being named.'

No-beginning (further) said, 'If one ask about the Tâo and another answer him, neither of them knows it. Even the former who asks has never learned anything about the Tâo. He asks what does not admit of being asked, and the latter answers where answer is impossible. When one asks what does not admit of being asked, his questioning is in (dire)

[1. See note 2 on last page.]

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extremity. When one answers where answer is impossible, he has no internal knowledge of the subject. When people without such internal knowledge wait to be questioned by others in dire extremity, they show that externally they see nothing of space and time, and internally know nothing of the Grand Commencement[1]. Therefore they cannot cross over the Khwän-lun[2], nor roam in the Grand Void.'

8. Starlight[3] asked Non-entity[3], saying, 'Master, do you exist? or do you not exist?' He got no answer to his question, however, and looked stedfastly to the appearance of the other, which was that of a deep void. All day long he looked to it, but could see nothing; he listened for it, but could hear nothing; he clutched at it, but got hold of nothing[4]. Starlight then said, 'Perfect! Who can attain to this? I can (conceive the ideas of) existence and non-existence, but I cannot (conceive the ideas of) non-existing non-existence, and still there be a non-existing existence. How is it possible to reach to this?'

9. The forger of swords for the Minister of War had reached the age of eighty, and had not lost a hair's-breadth of his ability[5]. The Minister said to

[1. The first beginning of all things or of anything.

2. The Khwän-lun may be considered the Sacred Mountain of Tâoism.

3. The characters Kwang Yâo denote the points of light all over the sky, ‘dusted with stars.' I can think of no better translation for them, as personified here, than 'starlight.' 'Non-entity' is a personification of the Tâo; as no existing thing, but the idea of the order that pervades and regulates throughout the universe.

4. A quotation from the Tâo Teh King, ch. 14.

5. Compare the case of the butcher in Bk. Ill, and other similar passages.]

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him, 'You are indeed skilful, Sir. Have you any method that makes you so?' The man said, 'Your servant has (always) kept to his work. When I was twenty, I was fond of forging swords. I looked at nothing else. I paid no attention to anything but swords. By my constant practice of it, I came to be able to do the work without any thought of what I was doing. By length of time one acquires ability at any art; and how much more one who is ever at work on it! What is there which does not depend on this, and succeed by it?'

10. Zän Khiû[1] asked Kung-nî, saying, 'Can it be known how it was before heaven and earth?' The reply was, 'It can. It was the same of old as now.' Zän Khiû asked no more and withdrew. Next day, however, he had another interview, and said, 'Yesterday I asked whether it could be known how it was before heaven and earth, and you, Master, said, "It can. As it is now, so it was of old." Yesterday, I seemed to understand you clearly, but to-day it is dark to me. I venture to ask you for an explanation of this.' Kung-nî said, 'Yesterday you seemed to understand me clearly, because your own spiritual nature had anticipated my reply. Today it seems dark to you, for you are in an unspiritual mood, and are trying to discover the meaning. (In this matter) there is no old time and no present; no beginning and no ending. Could it be that there were grandchildren and children before there were (other) grandchildren and children[2]?

[1. One of the disciples of Confucius:--Analects VI, 3.

2. Hû Wän-ying says, 'Before there can be grandsons and sons there -must be grandfathers and fathers to transmit them, so before {footnote p. 72} there were (the present) heaven and earth, there must have been another heaven and earth.' But I am not sure that he has in this remark exactly caught our author's meaning.]

{p. 72}

Zän Khiû had not made any reply, when Kung-nî went on, 'Let us have done. There can be no answering (on your part). We cannot with life give life to death; we cannot with death give death to life. Do death and life wait (for each other)? There is that which contains them both in its one comprehension[1]. Was that which was produced before Heaven and Earth a thing? That which made things and gave to each its character was not itself a thing. Things came forth and could not be before things, as if there had (previously) been things;--as if there had been things (producing one another) without end. The love of the sages for others, and never coming to an end, is an idea taken from this[2].'

11. Yen Yüan asked Kung-nî, saying, 'Master, I have heard you say, "There should be no demonstration of welcoming; there should be no movement to meet;"--I venture to ask in what way this affection of the mind may be shown.' The reply was, 'The ancients, amid (all) external changes, did not change internally; now-a-days men change internally, but take no note of external changes. When one only notes the changes of things, himself continuing one and the same, he does not change. How should there be (a difference between) his changing and not changing? How should he put himself in contact with (and come under the influence of) those external changes? He is sure, however,

[1. Meaning the Tâo.

2. An obscure remark.]

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to keep his points of contact with them from being many. The park of Shih-wei[1], the garden of Hwang-Tî, the palace of the Lord of Yü, and the houses of Thang and Wû;--(these all were places in which this was done). But the superior men (so called, of later days), such as the masters of the Literati and of Mohism, were bold to attack each other with their controversies; and how much more so are the men of the present day! Sages in dealing with others do not wound them; and they who do not wound others cannot be wounded by them. Only he whom others do not injure is able to welcome and meet men.

'Forests and marshes make me joyful and glad; but before the joy is ended, sadness comes and succeeds to it. When sadness and joy come, I cannot prevent their approach; when they go, I cannot retain them. How sad it is that men should only be as lodging-houses for things, (and the emotions which they excite)! They know what they meet, but they do not know what they do not meet; they use what power they have, but they cannot be strong where they are powerless. Such ignorance and powerlessness is what men cannot avoid. That they should try to avoid what they cannot avoid, is not this also sad? Perfect speech is to put speech away; perfect action is to put action away; to digest all knowledge that is known is a thing to be despised.'

[1. This personage has occurred before in Bk. VI, par. 7,--at the head of the most ancient sovereigns, who were in possession of the Tâo. His 'park' as a place for moral and intellectual inquiry is here mentioned;--so early was there a certain quickening of the mental faculties in China.]

{p. 74}



Käng-sang Khû[1].

I. Among the disciples[2] of Lâo Tan there was a Käng-sang Khû, who had got a greater knowledge than the others of his doctrines, and took up his residence with it in the north at the hill of Wei-lêi.[3] His servants who were pretentious and knowing he sent away, and his concubines who were officious and kindly he kept at a distance; living (only) with those who were boorish and rude, and employing (only) the bustling and ill-mannered[4]. After three years there was great prosperity[5] in Wei-lêi, and the people said to one another, 'When Mr. Käng-sang first came here, he alarmed us, and we thought him strange; our estimate of him after a short acquaintance was that he could not do us much good; but now that we have known him for years, we find him a more than ordinary benefit. Must he not be near being a sage? Why should you not

[1. See vol. xxxix. p. 153.

2. The term in the text commonly denotes 'servants.' It would seem here simply to mean 'disciples.'

3. Assigned variously. Probably the mount Yû in the 'Tribute of Yû,'-a hill in the present department of Tang-kâu, Shan-tung.

4. The same phraseology occurs in Bk. XI, par. 5; and also in the Shih, II, vi, i, q. v.

5. That is, abundant harvests. The ### of the common text should, probably, be ###.]

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unite in blessing him as the representative of our departed (whom we worship), and raise an altar to him as we do to the spirit of the grain[1]?' Käng-sang heard of it, kept his face indeed to the south[2] but was dissatisfied.

His disciples thought it strange in him, but he said to them, 'Why, my disciples, should you think this strange in me? When the airs of spring come forth, all vegetation grows; and, when the autumn arrives, all the previous fruits of the earth are matured. Do spring and autumn have these effects without any adequate cause? The processes of the Great Tâo have been in operation. I have heard that the Perfect man dwells idly in his apartment within its surrounding walls[3], and the people get wild and crazy, not knowing how they should repair to him. Now these small people of Wei-lêi in their opinionative way want to present their offerings to me, and place me among such men of ability and virtue. But am I a man to be set up as such a model? It is on this account that I am dissatisfied when I think of the words of Lâo Tan[4].'

2. His disciples said, 'Not so. In ditches eight cubits wide, or even twice as much, big fishes cannot turn their bodies about, but minnows and eels find them sufficient for them[5]; on hillocks six or

[1. I find it difficult to tell what these people wanted to make of Khû, further than what he says himself immediately to his disciples. I cannot think that they wished to make him their ruler.

2. This is the proper position for the sovereign in his court, and for the sage as the teacher of the world. Khû accepts it in the latter capacity, but with dissatisfaction.

3. Compare the Lî Kî, Bk. XXXVIII, par. 10, et al.

4. As if he were one with the Tâo.

5. I do not see the appropriateness here of the ### in the text.]

{p. 76}

seven cubits high, large beasts cannot conceal themselves, but foxes of evil omen find it a good place for them. And moreover, honour should be paid to the wise, offices given to the able, and preference shown to the good and the beneficial. From of old Yâo and Shun acted thus;--how much more may the people of Wei-lêi do so! O Master, let them have their way!'

Käng-sang replied, 'Come nearer, my little children. If a beast that could hold a carriage in its mouth leave its hill by itself, it will not escape the danger that awaits it from the net; or if a fish that could swallow a boat be left dry by the flowing away of the water, then (even) the ants are able to trouble it. Thus it is that birds and beasts seek to be as high as possible, and fishes and turtles seek to lie as deep as possible. In the same way men who wish to preserve their bodies and lives keep their persons concealed, and they do so in the deepest retirement possible. And moreover, what was there in those sovereigns to entitle them to your laudatory mention? Their sophistical reasonings (resembled) the reckless breaking down of walls and enclosures and planting the wild rub us and wormwood in their place; or making the hair thin before they combed it; or counting the grains of rice before they cooked them[1]. They would do such things with careful discrimination; but what was there in them to benefit the world? If you raise the men of talent to office, you will create disorder; making the people strive with one

[1. All these condemnatory descriptions of Yâo and Shun are eminently Tâoistic, but so metaphorical that it is not easy to appreciate them.]

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another for promotion; if you employ men for their wisdom, the people will rob one another (of their reputation)[1]. These various things are insufficient to make the people good and honest. They are very eager for gain;--a son will kill his father, and a minister his ruler (for it). In broad daylight men will rob, and at midday break through walls. I tell you that the root of the greatest disorder was planted in the times of Yâo and Shun. The branches of it will remain for a thousand ages; and after a thousand ages men will be found eating one another[2].)

3. (On this) Nan-yung Khû[3] abruptly sat right up and said, 'What method can an old man like me adopt to become (the Perfect man) that you have described?' Käng-sang Dze said, 'Maintain your body complete; hold your life in close embrace; and do not let your thoughts keep working anxiously:--do this for three years, and you may become the man of whom I have spoken.' The other rejoined, 'Eyes are all of the same form, I do not know any difference between them:--yet the blind have no power of vision. Ears are all of the same form; I do not know any difference between them:--yet the deaf have no power of hearing. Minds are all of the same nature, I do not know any difference between them;--yet the mad cannot make the minds of other men their own. (My) personality is indeed like (yours), but things seem to separate

[1. Compare the Tâo Teh King, ch. 3.

2. Khû is in all this too violent.

3. A disciple of Kang-sang Khû;--'a sincere seeker of the Tâo, very much to be pitied,' says Lin Hsî-kung.]

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between us[1]. I wish to find in myself what there is in you, but I am not able to do so'. You have now said to me, "Maintain your body complete; hold your life in close embrace; and do not let your thoughts keep working anxiously." With all my efforts to learn your Way, (your words) reach only my ears.' Käng-sang replied, 'I can say nothing more to you,' and then he added, 'Small flies cannot transform the bean caterpillar[2]; Yüeh[3] fowls cannot hatch the eggs of geese, but Lû fowls[3] can. It is not that the nature of these fowls is different; the ability in the one case and inability in the other arise from their different capacities as large and small. My ability is small and not sufficient to transform you. Why should you not go south and see Lâo-dze?'

4. Nan-yung Khû hereupon took with him some rations, and after seven days and seven nights arrived at the abode of Lâo-dze, who said to him, 'Are you come from Khû's?' 'I am,' was the reply. 'And why, Sir, have you come with such a multitude of attendants[4]?' Nan-yung was frightened, and turned his head round to look behind him. Lâo-dze said, 'Do you not understand my meaning?' The other held his head down and was ashamed, and then he lifted it up, and sighed, saying, 'I forgot at the moment what I should reply to your

[1. The ### in the former of these sentences is difficult. I take it in the sense of ###, and read it phî.

2. Compare the Shih, II, v, Ode 2, 3.

3. I believe the fowls of Shan-tung are still larger than those of Kih-kiang or Fû-kien.

4. A good instance of Lao's metaphorical style.]

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question, and in consequence I have lost what I wished to ask you.' 'What do you mean?' If I have not wisdom, men say that I am stupid[1], while if I have it, it occasions distress to myself. If I have not benevolence, then (I am charged) with doing hurt to others, while if I have it, I distress myself. If I have not righteousness, I (am charged with) injuring others, while if I have it, I distress myself. How can I escape from these dilemmas? These are the three perplexities that trouble me; and I wish at the suggestion of Khû to ask you about them.' Lao-dze replied, 'A little time ago, when I saw you and looked right into your eyes[2], I understood you, and now your words confirm the judgment which I formed. You look frightened and amazed. You have lost your parents, and are trying with a pole to find them at the (bottom of) the sea. You have gone astray; you are at your wit's end. You wish to recover your proper nature, and you know not what step to take first to find it. You are to be pitied!'

5. Nan-yung Khû asked to be allowed to enter (the establishment), and have an apartment assigned to him[3]. (There) he sought to realise the qualities which he loved, and put away those which he hated. For ten days he afflicted himself, and then waited again on Lâo-dze, who said to him, 'You must purify yourself thoroughly! But from your symptoms of

[1. In the text ###. The ### must be an erroneous addition or probably it is a mistake for the speaker's name ###.

2 Literally, 'between the eye-brows and eye-lashes.'

3. Thus we are as it were in the school of Lâo-dze, and can see how he deals with his pupils.]

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distress, and signs of impurity about you, I see there still seem to cling to you things that you dislike. When the fettering influences from without become numerous, and you try to seize them (you will find it a difficult task); the better plan is to bar your inner man against their entrance. And when the similar influences within get intertwined, it is a difficult task to grasp (and hold them in check); the better plan is to bar the outer door against their exit. Even a master of the Tâo and its characteristics will not be able to control these two influences together, and how much less can one who is only a student of the Tâo do so!' Nan-yung Khû said, 'A certain villager got an illness, and when his neighbours asked about it, he was able to describe the malady, though it was one from which he had not suffered before. When I ask you about the Grand Tâo, it seems to me like drinking medicine which (only serves to) increase my illness. I should like to hear from you about the regular method of guarding the life;--that will be sufficient for me.' Lao-dze replied, '(You ask me about) the regular method of guarding the life;--can you hold the One thing fast in your embrace? Can you keep from losing it? Can you know the lucky and the unlucky without having recourse to the tortoise-shell or the divining stalks? Can you rest (where you ought to rest)? Can you stop (when you have got enough)? Can you give over thinking of other men, and seek what you want in yourself (alone)? Can you flee (from the allurements of desire)? Can you maintain an entire simplicity? Can you become a little child? The child will cry all the day, without its throat becoming hoarse;--so perfect is the harmony (of

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its physical constitution). It will keep its fingers closed all the day without relaxing their grasp;--such is the concentration of its powers. It will keep its eyes fixed all day, without their moving;--so is it unaffected by what is external to it. It walks it knows not whither; it rests where it is placed, it knows not why; it is calmly indifferent to things, and follows their current. This is the regular method of guarding the life[1].'

6. Nan-yung Khû said, 'And are these all the characteristics of the Perfect man?' Lao-dze replied, 'No. These are what we call the breaking up of the ice, and the dissolving of the cold. The Perfect man, along with other men, gets his food from the earth, and derives his joy from his Heaven (-conferred nature). But he does not like them allow himself to be troubled by the consideration of advantage or injury coming from men and things; he does not like them do strange things, or form plans, or enter on undertakings; he flees from the allurements of desire, and pursues his way with an entire simplicity. Such is the way by which he guards his life.' 'And is this what constitutes his perfection?' 'Not quite. I asked you whether you could become a little child. The little child moves unconscious of what it is doing, and walks unconscious of whither it is going. Its body is like the branch of a rotten tree, and its mind is like slaked lime[2]. Being such, misery does not come to it, nor happiness. It has

[1. In this long reply there are many evident recognitions of passages in the Tâo Teh King;--compare chapters 9, 10, 55, 58.

2. See the description of Dze-khi's Tâoistic trance at the beginning of the second Book.]

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neither misery nor happiness;--how can it suffer from the calamities incident to men[1]?'

7. [2] He whose mind[3] is thus grandly fixed emits a Heavenly light. In him who emits this heavenly light men see the (True) man. When a man has cultivated himself (up to this point), thenceforth he remains constant in himself. When he is thus constant in himself, (what is merely) the human element will leave him', but Heaven will help him. Those whom their human element has left we call the people of Heaven[4]. Those whom Heaven helps we call the Sons of Heaven. Those who would by learning attain to this[5] seek for what they cannot

[1. Nan-yung Khû disappears here. His first master, Käng-sang Khû, disappeared in paragraph 4. The different way in which his name is written by Sze-mâ Khien is mentioned in the brief introductory note on p. 153. It should have been further stated there that in the Fourth Book of Lieh-dze (IV, 2b-3b) some account of him is given with his name as written by Khien. A great officer of Khän is introduced as boasting of him that he was a sage, and, through his mastery of the principles of Lâo Tan, could hear with his eyes and see with his ears. Hereupon Khang-zhang is brought to the court of the marquis of Lû to whom he says that the report of him which he had heard was false, adding that he could dispense with the use of his senses altogether, but could not alter their several functions. This being reported to Confucius, he simply laughs at it, but makes no remark.

2. I suppose that from this to the end of the Book we have the sentiments of Kwang-dze himself. Whether we consider them his, or the teachings of Lao-dze to his visitor, they are among the depths of Tâoism, which I will not attempt to elucidate in the notes here.

3. The character which I have translated 'mind' here is ###, meaning 'the side walls of a house,' and metaphorically used for 'the breast,' as the house of the mind. Hû explains it by ###.

4. He is emancipated from the human as contrary to the heavenly.

5. The Tâo.]

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learn. Those who would by effort attain to this, attempt what effort can never effect. Those who aim by reasoning to reach it reason where reasoning has no place. To know to stop where they cannot arrive by means of knowledge is the highest attainment. Those who cannot do this will be destroyed on the lathe of Heaven.

8. Where things are all adjusted to maintain the body; where a provision against unforeseen dangers is kept up to maintain the life of the mind; where an inward reverence is cherished to be exhibited (in all intercourse) with others;--where this is done, and yet all evils arrive, they are from Heaven, and not from the men themselves. They will not be sufficient to confound the established (virtue of the character), or be admitted into the Tower of Intelligence. That Tower has its Guardian, who acts unconsciously, and whose care will not be effective, if there be any conscious purpose in it[1]. If one who has not this entire sincerity in himself make any outward demonstration, every such demonstration will be incorrect. The thing will enter into him, and not let go its hold. Then with every fresh demonstration there will be still greater failure. If he do what is not good in the light of open day, men will have the opportunity of punishing him; if he do it in darkness and secrecy, spirits[2] Will inflict the punishment. Let a man understand this--his relation both to men and spirits, and then he will do what is good in the solitude of himself.

[1. This Guardian of the Mind or Tower of Intelligence is the Tâo.

2. One of the rare introductions of spiritual agency in the early Tâoism.]

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He whose rule of life is in himself does not act for the sake of a name. He whose rule is outside himself has his will set on extensive acquisition. He who does not act for the sake of a name emits a light even in his ordinary conduct; he whose will is set on extensive acquisition is but a trafficker. Men see how he stands on tiptoe, while he thinks that he is overtopping others. Things enter (and take possession of) him who (tries to) make himself exhaustively (acquainted with them), while when one is indifferent to them, they do not find any lodgment in his person. And how can other men find such lodgment? But when one denies lodgment to men, there are none who feel attachment to him. In this condition he is cut off from other men. There is no weapon more deadly than the will[1];--even Mû-yê[2] was inferior to it. There is no robber greater than the Yin and Yang, from whom nothing can escape of all between heaven and earth. But it is not the Yin and Yang that play the robber;--it is the mind that causes them to do so.

9. The Tâo is to be found in the subdivisions (of its subject); (it is to be found) in that when complete, and when broken up. What I dislike in considering it as subdivided, is that the division leads to the multiplication of it;--and what I dislike in that multiplication is that it leads to the (thought of) effort to secure it. Therefore when (a man)

[1. That is, the will, man's own human element, in opposition to the Heavenly element of the Tâo.

2. One of the two famous swords made for Ho-lü, the king of Wû. See the account of their making in the seventy-fourth chapter of the 'History of the Various States;' very marvellous, but evidently, and acknowledged to be, fabulous.]

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comes forth (and is born), if he did not return (to his previous non-existence), we should have (only) seen his ghost; when he comes forth and gets this (return), he dies (as we say). He is extinguished, and yet has a real existence:--this is another way of saying that in life we have) only man's ghost. By taking the material as an emblem of the immaterial do we arrive at a settlement of the case of man. He comes forth, but from no root; he reenters, but by no aperture. He has a real existence. but it has nothing to do with place; he has continuance, but it has nothing to do with beginning or end. He has a real existence, but it has nothing to do with place, such is his relation to space; he has continuance, but it has nothing to do with beginning or end, such is his relation to time; he has life; he has death; he comes forth; he enters; but we do not see his form;--all this is what is called the door of Heaven. The door of Heaven is Non-Existence. All things come from non-existence. The (first) existences could not bring themselves into existence; they must have come from non-existence. And non-existence is just the same as non-existing. Herein is the secret of the sages.

10. Among the ancients there were those whose knowledge reached the extreme point. And what was that point? There were some who thought that in the beginning there was nothing. This was the extreme point, the completest reach of their knowledge, to which nothing could be added. Again, there were those who supposed that (in the beginning) there were existences, proceeding to consider life to be a (gradual) perishing, and death a returning (to the original state). And there they stopped,

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making, (however), a distinction between life and death. Once again there were those who said, 'In the beginning there was nothing; by and by there was life; and then in a little time life was succeeded by death. We hold that non-existence was the head, life the body, and death the os coccygis. But of those who acknowledge that existence and nonexistence, death and life, are all under the One Keeper, we are the friends.' Though those who maintained these three views were different, they were so as the different branches of the same ruling Family (of Khû)[1],--the Kâos and the Kings, bearing the surname of the lord whom they honoured as the author of their branch, and the Kiâs named from their appanage;--(all one, yet seeming) not to be one.

The possession of life is like the soot that collects under a boiler. When that is differently distributed, the life is spoken of as different. But to say that life is different in different lives, and better in one than in another, is an improper mode of speech. And yet there may be something here which we do not know. (As for instance), at the lâ sacrifice the paunch and the divided hoofs may be set forth on separate dishes, but they should not be considered as parts of different victims; (and again), when one is inspecting a house, he goes over it all, even the adytum for the shrines of the temple, and visits also the most private apartments; doing this, and setting a different estimate on the different parts.

Let me try and speak of this method of apportioning

[1. Both Lâo and Kwang belonged to Khû, and this illustration was natural to them.]

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one's approval:--life is the fundamental consideration in it; knowledge is the instructor. From this they multiply their approvals and disapprovals, determining what is merely nominal and what is real. They go on to conclude that to themselves must the appeal be made in everything, and to try to make others adopt them as their model; prepared even to die to make good their views on every point. In this way they consider being employed in office as a mark of wisdom, and not being so employed as a mark of stupidity, success as entitling to fame, and the want of it as disgraceful. The men of the present day who follow this differentiating method are like the cicada and the little dove[1];--there is no difference between them.

11. When one treads on the foot of another in the market-place, he apologises on the ground of the bustle. If an elder tread on his younger brother, he proceeds to comfort him; if a parent tread on a child, he says and does nothing. Hence it is said, 'The greatest politeness is to show no special respect to others; the greatest righteousness is to take no account of things; the greatest wisdom is to lay no plans; the greatest benevolence is to make no demonstration of affection; the greatest good faith is to give no pledge of sincerity.'

Repress the impulses of the will; unravel the errors of the mind; put away the entanglements to virtue; and clear away all that obstructs the free course of the Tâo. Honours and riches, distinctions and austerity, fame and profit; these six things produce the impulses of the will. Personal appearance

[1. See in Bk. I, par. 2.]

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and deportment, the desire of beauty and subtle reasonings, excitement of the breath and cherished thoughts; these six things produce errors of the mind. Hatred and longings, joy and anger, grief and delight; these six things are the entanglements to virtue. Refusals and approachments, receiving and giving, knowledge and ability; these six things obstruct the course of the Tâo. When these four conditions, with the six causes of each, do not agitate the breast, the mind is correct. Being correct, it is still; being still, it is pellucid; being pellucid, it is free from pre-occupation; being free from pre-occupation, it is in the state of inaction, in which it accomplishes everything.

The Tâo is the object of reverence to all the virtues. Life is what gives opportunity for the display of the virtues. The nature is the substantive character of the life. The movement of the nature is called action. When action becomes hypocritical, we say that it has lost (its proper attribute).

The wise communicate with what is external to them and are always laying plans. This is what with all their wisdom they are not aware of;--they look at things askance. When the action (of the nature) is from external constraint, we have what is called virtue; when it is all one's own, we have what is called government. These two names seem to be opposite to each other, but in reality they are in mutual accord.

12. Î[1] was skilful in hitting the minutest mark, but stupid in wishing men to go on praising him without end. The sage is skilful Heavenwards, but stupid

[1. See on V, par. 2.]

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manwards. It is only the complete man who can be both skilful Heavenwards and good manwards.

Only an insect can play the insect, only an insect show the insect nature. Even the complete man hates the attempt to exemplify the nature of Heaven. He hates the manner in which men do so, and how much more would he hate the doing so by himself before men!

When a bird came in the way of Î, he was sure to obtain it;--such was his mastery with his bow. If all the world were to be made a cage, birds would have nowhere to escape to. Thus it was that Thang caged Î Yin by making him his cook[1], and that duke Mû of Khin caged Pâi-lî Hsî by giving the skins of five rams for him[2]. But if you try to cage men by anything but what they like, you will never succeed.

A man, one of whose feet has been cut off, discards ornamental (clothes);--his outward appearance will not admit of admiration. A criminal under sentence of death will ascend to any height without fear;--he has ceased to think of life or death.

When one persists in not reciprocating the gifts (of friendship), he forgets all others. Having forgotten all others, he may be considered as a Heaven-like man. Therefore when respect is shown to a man, and it awakens in him no joy, and when contempt awakens no anger, it is only one who shares in the Heaven-like harmony that can be thus. When he would display anger and yet is not angry, the anger comes out in that repression of it. When he would put forth action, and yet does not do so,

[1. See Mencius V, i, 7.

2. Mencius V, i, 9.]

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the action is in that not-acting. Desiring to be quiescent, he must pacify all his emotions; desiring to be spirit-like, he must act in conformity with his mind. When action is required of him, he wishes that it may be right; and it then is under an inevitable constraint. Those who act according to that inevitable constraint pursue the way of the sage.

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continues »