Terebess Asia Online (TAO)




Hsü Wû-kwei[1].

1. Hsü Wû-kwei having obtained through Nü Shang[2] an introduction to the marquis Wû of Wei[3], the marquis, speaking to him with kindly sympathy[4], said, 'You are ill, Sir; you have suffered from your hard and laborious toils[4] in the forests, and still you have been willing to come and see poor me[5].' Hsü Wû-kwei replied, 'It is I who have to comfort your lordship; what occasion have you to comfort me? If your lordship go on to fill up the measure of your sensual desires, and to prolong your likes and dislikes, then the condition of your mental nature will be diseased, and if you discourage and repress those desires, and deny your likings and dislikings, that will be an affliction to your ears and eyes

[1. See vol. xxxix, pp. 153, 154.

2. A favourite and minister of the marquis Wû.

3 This was the second marquis of Wei, one of the three principalities into which the great state of Zin had been broken up, and which he ruled as the marquis Kî for sixteen years, B.C. 386-371. His son usurped the title of king, and was the 'king Hui of Liang,' whom Mencius had interviews with. Wû, or 'martial,' was Kî's honorary, posthumous epithet.

4 The character (###) which I thus translate, has two tones, the second and fourth. Here and elsewhere in this paragraph and the next, it is with one exception in the fourth tone, meaning 'to comfort or reward for toils endured.' The one exception is its next occurrence,--'hard and laborious toils.'

5. The appropriate and humble designation of himself by the ruler of a state.]

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(deprived of their accustomed pleasures);--it is for me to comfort your lordship, what occasion have you to comfort me?' The marquis looked contemptuous, and made no reply.

After a little time, Hsü Wû-kwei said, 'Let me tell your lordship something:--I look at dogs and judge of them by their appearance[1]. One of the lowest quality seizes his food, satiates himself, and stops;--he has the attributes of a fox. One of a medium quality seems to be looking at the sun. One of the highest quality seems to have forgotten the one thing,--himself. But I judge still better of horses than I do of dogs. When I do so, I find that one goes straightforward, as if following a line; that another turns off, so as to describe a hook; that a third describes a square as if following the measure so called; and that a fourth describes a circle as exactly as a compass would make it. These are all horses of a state; but they are not equal to a horse of the kingdom. His qualities are complete. Now he looks anxious; now to be losing the way; now to be forgetting himself. Such a horse prances along, or rushes on, spurning the dust and not knowing where he is.' The marquis was greatly pleased and laughed.

When Hsü Wû-kwei came out, Nü Shang said to him, 'How was it, Sir, that you by your counsels produced such an effect on our ruler? In my counsellings of him, now indirectly, taking my subjects from the Books of Poetry, History, Rites, and Music; now directly, from the Metal Tablets[2], and the six Bow-cases[2], all calculated for the service (of the

[1. Literally, 'I physiognomise dogs.'

2. The names of two Books, or Collections of Tablets, the former {footnote p. 93} containing Registers of the Population, the latter treating of military subjects.]

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state), and to be of great benefit;--in these counsellings, repeated times without number, I have never seen the ruler show his teeth in a smile:--by what counsels have you made him so pleased to-day?' Hsü Wû-kwei replied, 'I only told him how I judged of dogs and horses by looking at their appearance.' 'So?' said Nü Shang, and the other rejoined, 'Have you not heard of the wanderer[1] from Yüeh? when he had been gone from the state several days, he was glad when he saw any one whom he had seen in it; when he had been gone a month, he was glad when he saw any one whom he had known in it; and when he had been gone a round year, he was glad when he saw any one who looked like a native of it. The longer he was gone, the more longingly did he think of the people;--was it not so? The men who withdraw to empty valleys, where the hellebore bushes stop up the little paths made by the weasels, as they push their way or stand amid the waste, are glad when they seem to hear the sounds of human footsteps; and how much more would they be so, if it were their brothers and relatives talking and laughing by their side! How long it is since the words of a True[2] man were heard as he talked and laughed by our ruler's side!'

2. At (another) interview of Hsü Wû-kwei with the marquis Wû, the latter said, 'You, Sir, have been dwelling in the forests for a long time, living

[1. Kwo Hsiang makes this 'a banished criminal.' This is not necessary.

2. Wû-kwei then had a high opinion of his own attainments in Tâoism, and a low opinion of Nü Shang and the other courtiers.]

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on acorns and chestnuts, and satiating yourself with onions and chives, without thinking of poor me. Now (that you are here), is it because you are old? or because you wish to try again the taste of wine and meat? or because (you wish that) I may enjoy the happiness derived from the spirits of the altars of the Land and Grain?' Hsü Wû-kwei replied, 'I was born in a poor and mean condition, and have never presumed to drink of your lordship's wine, or eat of your meat. My object in coming was to comfort your lordship under your troubles.' 'What? comfort me under my troubles?' 'Yes, to comfort both your lordship's spirit and body.' The marquis said, 'What do you mean?' His visitor replied, 'Heaven and Earth have one and the same purpose in the production (of all men). However high one man be exalted, he should not think that he is favourably dealt with; and however low may be the position of another, he should not think that he is unfavourably dealt with. You are indeed the one and only lord of the 10,000 chariots (of your state), but you use your dignity to embitter (the lives of) all the people, and to pamper your cars, eyes, nose, and mouth. But your spirit does not acquiesce in this. The spirit (of man) loves to be in harmony with others and hates selfish indulgence[1]. This selfish indulgence is a disease, and therefore I would comfort you under it. How is it that your lordship more than others brings this disease on yourself?' The marquis said, 'I have wished to see you, Sir, for a long time. I want to love my people, and by the exercise of righteous-

[1. Wü-kwei had a high idea of the constitution of human nature.]

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ness to make an end of war;--will that be sufficient?' Hsü Wû-kwei replied, 'By no means. To love the people is the first step to injure them'. By the exercise of righteousness to make an end of war is the root from which war is produced'. If your lordship try to accomplish your object in this way, you are not likely to succeed. All attempts to accomplish what we think good (with an ulterior end) is a bad contrivance. Although your lordship practise benevolence and righteousness (as you propose), it will be no better than hypocrisy. You may indeed assume the (outward) form, but successful accomplishment will lead to (inward) contention, and the change thence arising will produce outward fighting. Your lordship also must not mass files of soldiers in the passages of your galleries and towers, nor have footmen and horsemen in the apartments about your altars[2]. Do not let thoughts contrary to your success lie hidden in your mind; do not think of conquering men by artifice, or by (skilful) plans, or by fighting. If I kill the officers and people of another state, and annex its territory, to satisfy my selfish desires, while in my spirit I do not know whether the fighting be good, where is the victory that I gain? Your lordship's best plan is to abandon (your purpose). If you will cultivate in your breast the sincere purpose (to love the people), and so respond to the feeling of Heaven and Earth, and not (further) vex yourself, then your people will already have- escaped death;--what

[1. Tâoistic teaching, but questionable.

2. We need more information about the customs of the feudal princes fully to understand the language of this sentence.]

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occasion will your lordship have to make an end of war?'

3. Hwang-Tî was going to see Tâ-kwei[1] at the hill of Kü-zhze. Fang Ming was acting as charioteer, and Khang Yü was occupying the third place in the carriage. Kang Zo and Hsî Phäng went before the horses; and Khwän Hwun and Kû Khî followed the carriage. When they arrived at the wild of Hsiang-khäng, the seven sages were all perplexed, and could find no place at which to ask the way. just then they met with a boy tending some horses, and asked the way of him. 'Do you know,' they said, 'the hill of Kü-zhze?' and he replied that he did. He also said that he knew where Tâ-kwei was living. 'A strange boy is this!' said Hwang-Tî. 'He not only knows the hill of Kü-zhze, but he also knows where Tâ-kwei is living. Let me ask him about the government of mankind.' The boy said, 'The administration of the kingdom is like this (which I am doing);--what difficulty should there be in it? When I was young, I enjoyed myself roaming over all within the six confines of the world of space, and then I began to suffer from indistinct sight. A wise elder taught me, saying, "Ride in the chariot of the

[1. Tâ (or Thâi)-kwei (or wei) appears here as the name of a person. It cannot be the name of a hill, as it is said by some to be. The whole paragraph is parabolic or allegorical; and Tâ-kwei is probably a personification of the Great Tâo itself, though no meaning of the character kwei can be adduced to justify this interpretation. The horseherd boy is further supposed to be a personification of the 'Great Simplicity,' which is characteristic of the Tâo, the spontaneity of it, unvexed by the wisdom of man. The lesson of the paragraph is that taught in the eleventh Book, and many other places.]

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sun, and roam in the wild of Hsiang-Khäng." Now the trouble in my eyes is a little better, and I am again enjoying myself roaming outside the six confines of the world of space. As to the government of the kingdom, it is like this (which I am doing);what difficulty should there be in it?' Hwang-Tî said, 'The administration of the world is indeed not your business, my son; nevertheless, I beg to ask you about it.' The little lad declined to answer, but on Hwang-Tî putting the question again, he said, 'In what does the governor of the kingdom differ from him who has the tending of horses, and who has only to put away whatever in him would injure the horses?'

Hwang-Tî bowed to him twice with his head to the ground, called him his 'Heavenly Master[1],' and withdrew.

4. If officers of wisdom do not see the changes which their anxious thinking has suggested, they have no joy; if debaters are not able to set forth their views in orderly style, they have no joy; if critical examiners find no subjects on which to exercise their powers of vituperation, they have no joy:--they are all hampered by external restrictions.

Those who try to attract the attention of their age (wish to) rise at court; those who try to win the regard of the people[2] count holding office a glory; those who possess muscular strength boast of doing what is difficult; those who are bold and daring exert themselves in times of calamity; those who are able

[1. This is the title borne to the present day by the chief or pope of Tâoism, the representative of Mang Tâo-ling of our first century.

2. Taking the initial kung in the third tone. If we take it in the first tone, the meaning is different.]

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swordmen and spearmen delight in fighting; those whose powers are decayed seek to rest in the name (they have gained); those who are skilled in the laws seek to enlarge the scope of government; those who are proficient in ceremonies and music pay careful attention to their deportment; and those who profess benevolence and righteousness value opportunities (for displaying them).

The husbandmen who do not keep their fields well weeded are not equal to their business, nor are traders who do not thrive in the markets. When the common people have their appropriate employment morning and evening, they stimulate one another to diligence; the mechanics who are masters of their implements feel strong for their work. If their wealth does not increase, the greedy are distressed; if their power and influence is not growing, the ambitious are sad.

Such creatures of circumstance and things delight in changes, and if they meet with a time when they can show what they can do, they cannot keep themselves from taking advantage of it. They all pursue their own way like (the seasons of) the year, and do not change as things do. They give the reins to their bodies and natures, and allow themselves to sink beneath (the pressure of) things, and all their lifetime do not come back (to their proper selves):--is it not sad[1]?

5. Kwang-dze said, 'An archer, without taking aim beforehand, yet may hit the mark. If we say that he is a good archer, and that all the world may

[1. All the parties in this paragraph disallow the great principle of Tâoism, which does everything by doing nothing.]

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be is Îs[1], is this allowable?' Hui-dze replied, 'It is.' Kwang-dze continued, 'All men do not agree in counting the same thing to be right, but every one maintains his own view to be right; (if we say) that all men may be Yâos, is this allowable?' Hui-dze (again) replied, 'It is;' and Kwang-dze went on, 'Very well; there are the literati, the followers of Mo (Tî), of Yang (Kû), and of Ping[2];--making four (different schools). Including yourself, Master, there are five. Which of your views is really right? Or will you take the position of La Kü[3]? One of his disciples said to him, "Master, I have got hold of your method. I can in winter heat the furnace under my tripod, and in summer can produce ice." Lû Kü said, "That is only with the Yang element to call out the same, and with the Yin to call out the yin;--that is not my method. I will show you what my method is." On this he tuned two citherns, placing one of them in the hall, and the other in one of the inner apartments. Striking the note Kung[4] in the one, the same note vibrated in the other, and so it was with the note Kio[4]; the two instruments being tuned in the same way. But if he had differently tuned them on other strings different

[1. The famous archer of the Hsiâ dynasty, in the twenty-second century B.C.

2. The name of Kung-sun Lung, the Lung Li-khän of Bk. XXI. par. 1.

3. Only mentioned here. The statement of his disciple and his remark on it are equally obscure, though the latter is partially illustrated from the twenty-third, twenty-fourth, and other hexagrams of the Yih King.

4. The sounds of the first and third notes of the Chinese musical scale, corresponding to our A and E. I know too little of music myself to pronounce further on Lû Kü's illustration.]

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from the normal arrangement of the five notes, the five-and-twenty strings would all have vibrated, without any difference of their notes, the note to which he had tuned them ruling and guiding all the others. Is your maintaining your view to be right just like this?'

Hui-dze replied, 'Here now are the literati, and the followers of Mo, Yang, and Ping. Suppose that they have come to dispute with me. They put forth their conflicting statements; they try vociferously to put me down; but none of them have ever proved me wrong --what do you say to this?' Kwang-dze said, 'There was a man of Khî who cast away his son in Sung to be a gatekeeper there, and thinking nothing of the mutilation lie would incur; the same man, to secure one of his sacrificial vessels or bells, would have it strapped and secured, while to find his son who was lost, he would not go out of the territory of his own state:--so forgetful was he of the relative importance of things. If a man of Khû, going to another state as a lame gate-keeper, at midnight, at a time when no one was nigh, were to fight with his boatman, he would not be able to reach the shore, and he would have done what he could to provoke the boatman's animosity,.'

6. As Kwang-dze was accompanying a funeral, when passing by the grave of Hui-dze[2], he looked

[1. The illustrations in this last member of the paragraph are also obscure. Lin Hsî-kung says that all the old explanations of them are defective; his own explanation has failed to make itself clear to me.

2. The expression in the last sentence of the paragraph, 'the Master,' makes it certain that this was the grave of Kwang-dze's friend with whom he had had so many conversations and arguments.]

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round, and said to his attendants, 'On the top of the nose of that man of Ying[1] there is a (little) bit of mud like a fly's wing,' He sent for the artisan Shih to cut it away. Shih whirled his axe so as to produce a wind, which immediately carried off the mud entirely, leaving the nose uninjured, and the (statue of) the man of Ying' standing undisturbed. The ruler Yüan of Sung[2] heard of the feat, called the artisan Shih, and said to him, 'Try and do the same thing on me.' The artisan said, 'Your servant has been able to trim things in that way, but the material on which I have worked has been dead for a long time.' Kwang-dze said, 'Since the death of the Master, I have had no material to work upon. I have had no one with whom to talk.'

7. Kwan Kung being ill, duke Hwan went to ask for him, and said, 'Your illness, father Kung, is very severe; should you not speak out your mind to me? Should this prove the great illness, to whom will it be best for me to entrust my State?' Kwan Kung said, 'To whom does your grace wish to entrust it?' 'To Pâo Shû-yâ[3],' was the reply. 'He will not do. He is an admirable officer, pure and incorruptible, but with others who are not like himself he will not associate. And when he once hears

[1. Ying was the capital of Khû. I have seen in China about the graves of wealthy and distinguished men many life-sized statues of men somehow connected with them.

2. Yüan is called the 'ruler' of Sung. That duchy was by this time a mere dependency of Khî. The sacrifices of its old ruling House were finally extinguished by Khî in B.C. 206.

3 Pâo Shû-yâ had been the life-long friend of the dying premier, and to him in the first place had been owing the elevation of Hwan to the marquisate.]

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of another man's faults, he never forgets them. If you employ him to administer the state, above, he will take the leading of your Grace, and, below, he will come into collision with the people;--in no long time you will be holding him as an offender.' The duke said, 'Who, then, is the man?' The reply was, 'If I must speak, there is Hsî Phäng[1];--he will do. He is a man who forgets his own high position, and against whom those below him will not revolt. He is ashamed that he is not equal to Hwang-Tî, and pities those who are not equal to himself. Him who imparts of his virtue to others we call a sage; him who imparts of his wealth to others we call a man of worth. He who by his worth would preside over others, never succeeds in winning them; he who with his worth condescends to others, never but succeeds in winning them. Hsî Phäng has not been (much) heard of in the state; he has not been (much) distinguished in his own clan. But as I must speak, he is the man for you.'

8. The king of Wû, floating about on the Kiang, (landed and) ascended the Hill of monkeys, which all, when they saw him, scampered off in terror, and hid themselves among the thick hazels. There was one, however, which, in an unconcerned way, swung about on the branches, displaying its cleverness to the king, who thereon discharged an arrow at it. With a nimble motion it caught the swift arrow, and the king ordered his attendants to hurry forward and shoot it; and thus the monkey was seized and killed. The king then, looking round, said to his friend Yen

[1. For a long time a great officer of Khî, but he died in the same year as Kwan Kung himself.]

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Pû-î[1], 'This monkey made a display of its artfulness, and trusted in its agility, to show me its arrogance;--this it was which brought it to this fate. Take warning from it. Ah! do not by your looks give yourself haughty airs!' Yen Pû-î[1], when he returned home, put himself under the teaching of Tung Wû[1], to root up[2] his pride. He put away what he delighted in and abjured distinction. In three years the people of the kingdom spoke of him with admiration.

9. Nan-po Dze-khî[3] was seated, leaning forward on his stool, and sighing gently as he looked up to heaven. (just then) Yen Khäng-dze[3] came in, and said, when he saw him, 'Master, you surpass all others. Is it right to make your body thus like a mass of withered bones, and your mind like so much slaked lime?' The other said, 'I formerly lived in a grotto on a hill. At that time Thien Ho[4] once came to see me, and all the multitudes of Khî congratulated him thrice (on his having found the proper man). I must first have shown myself, and so it was that he knew me; I must first have been selling (what I had), and so it was that he came to buy. If I had not shown what I possessed, how should he have known it; if I had not been selling (myself), how should he have come to buy me? I pity

[1. We know these names only from their occurrence here. Tung Wû must have been a professor of Tâoism.

2. The text here is ###, to help;' but it is explained as = ###, 'a hoe.' The Khang-hsî dictionary does not give this meaning of the character, but we find it in that of Yen Yüan.

3. See the first paragraph of Bk. II.

4. ### must be the ### of Sze-mâ Khien, who became marquis of Khî in B.C. 389.]

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the men who lose themselves[1]; I also pity the men who pity others (for not being known); and I also pity the men who pity the men who pity those that pity others. But since then the time is long cone by; (and so I am in the state in which you have found me)[2].

10. Kung-nî, having gone to Khû, the king ordered wine to be presented to him. Sun Shû-âo[3] stood, holding the goblet in his hand. Î-liâo of Shih-nan[3], having received (a cup), poured its contents out as a sacrificial libation, and said, 'The men of old, on such an occasion as this, made some speech.' Kung-nî said, 'I have heard of speech without words; but I have never spoken it; I will do so now. Î-liâo of Shih-nan kept (quietly) handling his little spheres,

[1. In seeking for worldly honours.

2. That is, I have abjured all desire for worldly honour, and desire attainment in the Tho alone.

3. See Mencius VI, ii, 15. Sun Shû-âo was chief minister to king Khwang who died in B.C. 591, and died, probably, before Confucius was born, and Î-liâo (p. 28, n. 3) appears in public life only after the death of the sage. The three men could not have appeared together at any time. This account of their doing so was devised by our author as a peg on which to hang his own lessons in the rest of the paragraph. The two historical events referred to I have found it difficult to discover. They are instances of doing nothing, and yet thereby accomplishing what is very great. The action of Î-liâo in 'quietly handling his balls' recalls my seeing the same thing done by a gentleman at Khü-fâu, the city of Confucius, in 1873. Being left there with a companion, and not knowing how to get to the Grand Canal, many gentlemen came to advise with us how we should proceed. Among them was one who, while tendering his advice, kept rolling about two brass balls in one palm with the fingers of the other hand. When I asked the meaning of his action, I was told, 'To show how he is at his ease and master of the situation.' I mention the circumstance because I have nowhere found the phrase in the text adequately explained.]

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and the difficulties between the two Houses were resolved; Sun Shû-âo slept undisturbed on his couch, with his (dancer's) feather in his hand, and the men of Ying enrolled themselves for the war. I wish I had a beak three cubits long[1].'

In the case of those two (ministers) we have what is called 'The Way that cannot be trodden[2];' in (the case of Kung-nî) we have what is called 'the Argument without words[2].' Therefore when all attributes are comprehended in the unity of the Tâo, and speech stops at the point to which knowledge does not reach, the conduct is complete. But where there is (not)[3] the unity of the Tâo, the attributes cannot (always) be the same, and that which is beyond the reach of knowledge cannot be exhibited by any reasoning. There may be as many names as those employed by the Literati and the Mohists, but (the result is) evil. Thus when the sea does not reject the streams that flow into it in their eastward course, we have the perfection of greatness. The sage embraces in his regard both Heaven and Earth; his beneficent influence extends to all under the sky; and we do not know from whom it comes. Therefore though when living one may have no rank, and when dead no honorary epithet; though the reality (of what he is) may not be acknowledged and his name not established; we have in him what is called 'The Great Man.'

A dog is not reckoned good because it barks well; and a man is not reckoned wise because he speaks

[1. This strange wish concludes the speech of Confucius. What follows is from Kwang-dze.

2. Compare the opening chapters of the Tâo Teh King.

3. The Tâo is greater than any and all of its attributes.]

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skilfully;--how much less can he be deemed Great! If one thinks he is Great, he is not fit to be accounted Great;--how much less is he so from the practice of the attributes (of the Tâo)[1]! Now none are so grandly complete as Heaven and Earth; but do they seek for anything to make them so grandly complete? He who knows this grand completion does not seek for it; he loses nothing and abandons nothing; he does not change himself from regard to (external) things; he turns in on himself, and finds there an inexhaustible store; he follows antiquity and does not feel about (for its lessons);--such is the perfect sincerity of the Great Man.

11. Dze-khî[2] had eight sons. Having arranged them before him, he called Kiû-fang Yän[3], and said to him, 'Look at the physiognomy of my sons for me;--which will be the fortunate one?' Yän said, 'Khwän is the fortunate one.' .Dze-khî looked startled, and joyfully said, 'In what way?' Yän replied, 'Khwän will share the meals of the ruler of a state to the end of his life.' The father looked uneasy, burst into tears, and said, 'What has my son done that he should come to such a fate?' Yin replied, 'When one shares the meals of the ruler of a state, blessings reach to all within the three branches of his kindred[4], and how much more to his father and mother! But you, Master, weep when you hear this;--you oppose (the idea of) such happiness. It is the good fortune of your son, and

[1. See note 3 on previous page.

2. This can hardly be any other but Nan-kwo Dze-khî.

3. A famous physiognomist; some say, of horses. Hwâi-nan Dze calls him Kiû-fang Kâo (###).

4. See Mayers's Manual, p. 303.]

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you count it his misfortune.' Dze-khî said, 'O Yän, what sufficient ground have you for knowing that this will be Khwän's good fortune? (The fortune) that is summed up in wine and flesh affects only the nose and the mouth, but you are not able to know how it will come about. I have never been a shepherd, and yet a ewe lambed in the south-west corner of my house. I have never been fond of hunting, and yet a quail hatched her young in the south-east corner. If these were not prodigies, what can be accounted such? Where I wish to occupy my mind with my son is in (the wide sphere of) heaven and earth; I wish to seek his enjoyment and mine in (the idea of) Heaven, and our support from the Earth. I do not mix myself up with him in the affairs (of the world); nor in forming plans (for his advantage); nor in the practice of what is strange. I pursue with him the perfect virtue of Heaven and Earth, and do not allow ourselves to be troubled by outward things. I seek to be with him in a state of undisturbed indifference, and not to practise what affairs might indicate as likely to be advantageous. And now there is to come to us this vulgar recompense. Whenever there is a strange realisation, there must have been strange conduct. Danger threatens;--not through any sin of me or of my son, but as brought about, I apprehend, by Heaven. It is this which makes me weep!'

Not long after this, .Dze-khî sent off Khwän to go to Yen[1], when he was made prisoner by some robbers on the way. It would have been difficult to sell him if he were whole and entire, and they thought

[1. The state so called.]

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their easiest plan was to cut off (one of his) feet first. They did so, and sold him in Khî, where he became Inspector of roads for a Mr. Khü[1]. Nevertheless he had flesh to eat till he died.

12. Nieh Khüeh met Hsü Yû (on the way), and said to him, 'Where, Sir, are you going to?' 'I am fleeing from Yâo,' was the reply. 'What do you mean?' 'Yâo has become so bent on his benevolence that I am afraid the world will laugh at him, and that in future ages men will be found eating one another[2]. Now the people are collected together without difficulty. Love them, and they respond with affection; benefit them, and they come to you; praise them, and they are stimulated (to please you); make them to experience what they dislike, and they disperse. When the loving and benefiting proceed from benevolence and righteousness, those who forget the benevolence and righteousness, and those who make a profit of them, are the many. In this way the practice of benevolence and righteousness comes to be without sincerity and is like a borrowing of the instruments with which men catch birds[3]. In all this the one man's seeking to benefit the world by his decisions and enactments (of such a nature) is as if he were to cut through (the nature of all) by one operation;--Yâo knows how wise and superior men can benefit the world, but he does not

[1. One expert supposes the text here to mean 'duke Khü;' but there was no such duke of Khî. The best explanation seems to be that Khü was a rich gentleman, inspector of the roads of Khî, or of the streets of its capital, who bought Khwän to take his duties for him.

2. Compare in Bk. XXIII, par. 2.

3. A scheming for one's own advantage.]

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also know how they injure it. It is only those who stand outside such men that know this[1].'

There are the pliable and weak; the easy and hasty; the grasping and crooked. Those who are called the pliable and weak learn the words of some one master, to which they freely yield their assent, being secretly pleased with themselves, and thinking that their knowledge is sufficient, while they do not know that they have not yet begun (to understand) a single thing. It is this which makes them so pliable and weak. The easy and hasty are like lice on a pig. The lice select a place where the bristles are more wide apart, and look on it as a great palace or a large park. The slits between the toes, the overlappings of its skin, about its nipples and its thighs,--all these seem to them safe apartments and advantageous places;--they do not know that the butcher one morning, swinging about his arms, will spread the grass, and kindle the fire, so that they and the pig will be roasted together. So do they appear and disappear with the place where they harboured:--this is why they are called the easy and hasty.

Of the grasping and crooked we have an example in Shun. Mutton has no craving for ants, but ants have a craving for mutton, for it is rank. There was a rankness about the conduct of Shun, and the people were pleased with him. Hence when he thrice changed his residence, every one of them became a capital city[2]. When he came to the wild

[1. I suppose that the words of Hsü Yû stop with this sentence, and that from this to the end of the paragraph we have the sentiments of Kwang-dze himself. The style is his,--graphic but sometimes coarse.

2. See note on Mencius V, i, 2, 3.]

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of Täng[1], he had 100,000 families about him. Yâo having heard of the virtue and ability of Shun, appointed him to a new and uncultivated territory, saying, 'I look forward to the benefit of his coming here.' When Shun was appointed to this new territory, his years were advanced, and his intelligence was decayed;--and yet he could not find a place of rest or a home. This is an example of being grasping and wayward.

Therefore (in opposition to such) the spirit-like man dislikes the flocking of the multitudes to him. When the multitudes come, they do not agree; and when they do not agree, no benefit results from their coming. Hence there are none whom he brings very near to himself, and none whom he keeps at a great distance. He keeps his virtue in close embrace, and warmly nourishes (the spirit of) harmony, so as to be in accordance with all men. This is called the True man[2] . Even the knowledge of the ant he puts away; his plans are simply those of the fishes[3]; even the notions of the sheep he discards. His seeing is simply that of the eye; his hearing that of the ear; his mind is governed by its general exercises. Being such, his course is straight and level as if marked out by a line, and its every change is in accordance (with the circumstances of the case).

13. The True men of old waited for the issues of events as the arrangements of Heaven, and did not by their human efforts try to take the place of Heaven. The True men of old (now) looked on

[1. Situation unknown.

2. The spirit-like man and the true man are the same.

3. Fishes forget everything in the water.]

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success as life and on failure as death; and (now) on success as death and on failure as life. The operation of medicines will illustrate this:--there are monk's-bane, the kieh-käng, the tribulus fruit, and china-root; each of these has the time and case for which it is supremely suitable; and all such plants and their suitabilities cannot be mentioned particularly. Kâu-kien[1] took his station on (the hill of) Kwâi-khî with 3,000 men with their buff-coats and shields:--(his minister) Kung knew how the ruined (Yüeh) might still be preserved, but the same man did not know the sad fate in store for himself[1]. Hence it is said, 'The eye of the owl has its proper fitness; the leg of the crane has its proper limit, and to cut off any of it would distress (the bird).' Hence (also) it is (further) said, 'When the wind passes over it, the volume of the river is diminished, and so it is when the sun passes over it. But let the wind and sun keep a watch together on the river, and it will not begin to feel that they are doing it any injury:--it relies on its springs and flows on.' Thus, water does its part to the ground with undeviating exactness; and so does the shadow to the substance; and one thing to another. Therefore there is danger from the power of vision in the eyes, of hearing in the ears, and of the inordinate thinking of the mind; yea, there is danger from the exercise of every power of which man's constitution is the depository.

[1. See the account of the struggle between Kâu-kien of Yüeh and Fû-khâi of Wû in the eightieth and some following chapters of the I History of the various States of the Eastern Kâu (Lieh Kwo Kîh).' We have sympathy with Kâu-kien, till his ingratitude to his two great ministers, one of whom was Wän Kung (the Kung of the text), shows the baseness of his character.]

{p. 112}

When the danger has come to a head, it cannot be averted, and the calamity is perpetuated, and goes on increasing. The return from this (to a state of security) is the result of (great) effort, and success can be attained only after a long time; and yet men consider (their power of self-determination) as their precious possession:--is it not sad? It is in this way that we have the ruin of states and the slaughtering of the people without end; while no one knows how to ask how it comes about.

14. Therefore, the feet of man on the earth tread but on a small space, but going on to where he has not trod before, he traverses a great distance easily; so his knowledge is but small, but going on to what he does not already know, he comes to know what is meant by Heaven[1]. He knows it as The Great Unity; The Great Mystery; The Great Illuminator; The Great Framer; The Great Boundlessness; The Great Truth; The Great Determiner. This makes his knowledge complete. As The Great Unity, he comprehends it; as The Great Mystery, he unfolds it; as the Great Illuminator, he contemplates it; as the Great Framer, it is to him the Cause of all; as the Great Boundlessness, all is to him its embodiment; as The Great Truth, he examines it; as The Great Determiner, he holds it fast.

Thus Heaven is to him all; accordance with it is the brightest intelligence. Obscurity has in this its pivot; in this is the beginning. Such being the

[1. This paragraph grandly sets forth the culmination of all inquiries into the Tâo as leading to the knowledge of Heaven; and the means by which it may be attained to.]

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case, the explanation of it is as if it were no explanation; the knowledge of it is as if it were no knowledge. (At first) he does not know it, but afterwards he comes to know it. In his inquiries, he must not set to himself any limits, and yet he cannot be without a limit. Now ascending, now descending, then slipping from the grasp, (the Tâo) is yet a reality, unchanged now as in antiquity, and always without defect:--may it not be called what is capable of the greatest display and expansion? Why should we not inquire into it? Why should we be perplexed about it? With what does not perplex let us explain what perplexes, till we cease to be perplexed. So may we arrive at a great freedom from all perplexity!

{p. 114}




1. Zeh-yang having travelled to Khû, Î Kieh[2] spoke of him to the king, and then, before the king had granted him an interview, (left him, and) returned home. Zeh-yang went to see Wang Kwo[3], and said to him, 'Master, why do you not mention me to the king?' Wang Kwo replied, 'I am not so good a person to do that as Kung-yüeh Hsiû[4].' 'What sort of man is he?' asked the other, and the reply was, 'In winter he spears turtles in the Kiang, and in summer he rests in shady places on the mountain. When passers-by ask him (what he is doing there), he says, "This is my abode." Since Î Kieh was not able to induce the king to see you, how much less should I, who am not equal to him, be able to do so! Î Kieh's character is this:--he has no (real) virtue, but he has knowledge. If you do not freely yield yourself to him, but employ him to carry on his spirit-like influence (with you), you will certainly get upset and benighted in the region of riches and honours. His help will not be of a virtuous character, but will go to make your virtue

[1. See vol. xxxix, pp. 154, 155.

2. A native of Khû, and, probably, a parasite of the court.

3. An officer of Khû, 'a worthy man.'

4. A recluse of Khû, but not keeping quite aloof from the court.]

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less;--it will be like heaping on clothes in spring as a protection against cold, or bringing back the cold winds of winter as a protection against heat (in summer). Now the king of Khû is of a domineering presence and stern. He has no forgiveness for offenders, but is merciless as a tiger. It is only a man of subtle speech, or one of correct virtue, who can bend him from his purpose[1].

'But the sagely man[2], when he is left in obscurity, causes the members of his family to forget their poverty; and, when he gets forward to a position of influence, causes kings and dukes to forget their rank and emoluments, and transforms them to be humble. With the inferior creatures, he shares their pleasures, and they enjoy themselves the more; with other men, he rejoices in the fellowship of the Tâo, and preserves it in himself. Therefore though he may not speak, he gives them to drink of the harmony (of his spirit). Standing in association with them, he transforms them till they become in their feeling towards him as sons with a father. His wish is to return to the solitude of his own mind, and this is the effect of his occasional intercourse with them. So far-reaching is his influence on the minds of men; and therefore I said to you. "Wait for Kung-yüeh Hsiû.'''

2. The sage comprehends the connexions between himself and others, and how they all go to constitute him of one body with them, and he does not know how it is so;--he naturally does so. In fulfilling his constitution, as acted on and acting, he

[1. Much of the description of Î Kieh is difficult to construe.

2. Kung-yüeh Hsiû.]

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(Simply) follows the direction of Heaven; and it is in consequence of this that men style him (a sage). If he were troubled about (the insufficiency of) his knowledge, what he did would always be but small, and sometimes would be arrested altogether;--how would he in this case be (the sage)? When (the sage) is born with all his excellence, it is other men who see it for him. If they did not tell him, he would not know that he was more excellent than others. And when he knows it, he is as if he did not know it; when he hears it, he is as if he did not hear it. His source of joy in it has no end, and men's admiration of him has no end;--all this takes place naturally[1]. The love of the sage for others receives its name from them. If they did not tell him of it, he would not know that he loved them; and when he knows it, he is as if he knew it not; when he hears it, he is as if he heard it not. His love of others never has an end, and their rest in him has also no end:--all this takes place naturally[1].

3. When one sees at a distance his old country and old city, he feels a joyous satisfaction[2]. Though it be full of mounds and an overgrowth of trees and grass, and when he enters it he finds but a tenth part remaining, still he feels that satisfaction. How much more when he sees what he saw, and hears what he heard before! All this is to him like a tower eighty cubits high exhibited in the sight of all men.

[1. That is, 'he does so in the spontaneity of his nature.' The ### requires the employment of the term 'nature' here, not according to any abstract usage of the term, but meaning the natural constitution. Compare the ### in Mencius VII. i, 30.

2. So does he rejoice in attaining to the knowledge of his nature.]

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(The sovereign) Zän-hsiang[1] was possessed of that central principle round which all things revolve[2], and by it he could follow them to their completion. His accompanying them had neither ending nor beginning, and was independent of impulse or time. Daily he witnessed their changes, and himself underwent no change; and why should he not have rested in this? If we (try to) adopt Heaven as our Master, we incapacitate ourselves from doing so. Such endeavour brings us under the power of things. If one acts in this way, what is to be said of him? The sage never thinks of Heaven nor of men. He does not think of taking the initiative, nor of anything external to himself. He moves along with his age, and does not vary or fail. Amid all the completeness of his doings, he is never exhausted. For those who wish to be in accord with him, what other course is there to pursue?

When Thang got one to hold for him the reins of government, namely, Män-yin Täng-häng[3], he employed him as his teacher. He followed his master, but did not allow himself to be hampered by him, and so he succeeded in following things to their completion. The master had the name; but that name was a superfluous addition to his laws, and the twofold character of his government was made apparent[4]. Kung-nî's 'Task your thoughts to the utmost' was his expression of the duties of a

[1. A sage sovereign prior to the three Hwang or August ones.

2. See the same phraseology in Book II, par. 3.

3. I have followed Lin Hsî-hung in taking these four characters as the name of one man,

4. There was a human element in it instead of the Heavenly only; but some critics think the text here is erroneous or defective.]

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master. Yung-khäng said, 'Take the days away and there will be no year; without what is internal there will be nothing external[1].'

4. (King) Yung[2] of Wei made a treaty with the marquis Thien Mâu[3] (of Khî), which the latter violated. The king was enraged, and intended to send a man to assassinate him. When the Minister of War[4] heard of it, he was ashamed, and said (to the king), 'You are a ruler of 10,000 chariots, and by means of a common man would avenge yourself on your enemy. I beg you to give me, Yen, the command of 200,000 soldiers to attack him for you. I will take captive his people and officers, halter (and lead off) his oxen and horses, kindling a fire within him that shall burn to his backbone. I will then storm his capital; and when he shall run away in terror, I will flog his back and break his spine.' Kî-dze[5] heard of this advice, and was ashamed of it, and said (to the king), 'We have been raising the wall (of our capital) to a height of eighty cubits, and the work has been completed. If we now get it thrown down, it will be a painful toil to the convict builders. It is now seven years

[1. Said to have been employed by Hwang-Tî to make the calendar.

2. B.C. 370-317.

3. I do not find the name Mâu as belonging to any of the Thien rulers of Khî. The name of the successor of Thien Ho, who has been before us, was ###, Wû, for which ###, Mâu, may be a mistake; or 'the marquis Mâu' may be a creation of our author.

4. Literally, 'the Rhinoceros' Head,' the title of 'the Minister of War' in Wei, who was at this time a Kung-sun Yen. See the memoir of him in Sze-mâ Khien, Book IX. of his Biographies.

5. I do not know that anything more can be said of Kî and Hwâ than that they were officers of Wei.]

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since our troops were called out, and this is the foundation of the royal sway. Yen would introduce disorder;--he should not be listened to.' Hwâ-dze[1] heard of this advice, and, greatly disapproving of it, said (to the king), 'He who shows his skill in saying "Attack Khî" would produce disorder; and he who shows his skill in saying "Do not attack it" would also produce disorder. And one who should (merely) say, "The counsellors to attack Khî and not to attack it would both produce disorder," would himself also lead to the same result.' The king said, 'Yes, but what am I to do?' The reply was, 'You have only to seek for (the rule of) the Tâo (on the subject).'

Hui-dze, having heard of this counsel, introduced to the king Tâi Zin-zän[2], who said, 'There is the creature called a snail; does your majesty know it?' 'I do.' 'On the left horn of the snail there is a kingdom which is called Provocation, and on the right horn another which is called Stupidity. These two kingdoms are continually striving about their territories and fighting. The corpses that lie on the ground amount to several myriads. The army of one may be defeated and put to flight, but in fifteen days it will return.' The king said, 'Pooh! that is empty talk!' The other rejoined, 'Your servant begs to show your majesty its real significance. When your majesty thinks of space--east, west, north, and south, above and beneath--can you set any limit to it?' 'It is illimitable,' said the king; and his visitor went on, 'Your majesty knows

[1. See note 5 on preceding page.

2. Evidently a man of considerable reach of thought.]

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how to let your mind thus travel through the illimitable, and yet (as compared with this) does it not seem insignificant whether the kingdoms that communicate one with another exist or not?' The king replies, 'It does so;' and Tâi Zin-zän said, finally, 'Among those kingdoms, stretching one after another, there is this Wei; in Wei there is this (city of) Liang[1]; and in Liang there is your majesty. Can you make any distinction between yourself, and (the king of that kingdom of) Stupidity?' To this the king answered, 'There is no distinction,' and his visitor went out, while the king remained disconcerted and seemed to have lost himself.

When the visitor was gone, Hui-dze came in and saw the king, who said, 'That stranger is a Great man. An (ordinary) sage is not equal to him.' Hui-dze replied, 'If you blow into a flute, there come out its pleasant notes; if you blow into a sword-hilt, there is nothing but a wheezing sound. Yâo and Shun are the subjects of men's praises, but if you speak of them before Tai Zin-zän, there will be but the wheezing sound.'

5. Confucius, having gone to Khû, was lodging in the house of a seller of Congee at Ant-hill. On the roof of a neighbouring house there appeared the husband and his wife, with their servants, male and female[2]. Dze-lû said, 'What are those people doing,

[1. Liang, the capital, came to be used also as the name of the state;--as in Mencius.

2. 'They were on the roof, 'repairing it' say some. 'They had got on the roof, to get out of the way of Confucius,' say others. The sequel shows that this second interpretation is correct; but we do not see how the taking to the roof facilitated their departure from the house.]

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collected there as we see them?' Kung-nî replied, 'The man is a disciple of the sages. He is burying himself among the people, and hiding among the fields. Reputation has become little in his eyes, but there is no bound to his cherished aims. Though he may speak with his mouth, he never tells what is in his mind. Moreover, he is at variance with the age, and his mind disdains to associate with it;--he is one who may be said to lie hid at the bottom of the water on the dry land. Is he not a sort of Î Liâo of Shih-nan?' Dze-lû asked leave to go and call him, but Confucius said, 'Stop. He knows that I understand him well. He knows that I am come to Khû, and thinks that I am sure to try and get the king to invite him (to court). He also thinks that I am a man swift to speak. Being such a man, he would feel ashamed to listen to the words of one of voluble and flattering tongue, and how much more to come himself and see his person! And why should we think that he will remain here?' Dze-lû, however, went to see how it was, but found the house empty.

6. The Border-warden of Khang-wû[1], in questioning Dze-lâo[2], said, 'Let not a ruler in the exercise of his government be (like the farmer) who leaves the clods unbroken, nor, in regulating his people, (like one) who recklessly plucks up the shoots. Formerly, in ploughing my corn-fields, I left the clods unbroken, and my recompense was in the rough unsatisfactory crops; and in weeding, I destroyed and tore up (many good plants), and my recompense was in the scantiness of my harvests. In subsequent

[1. Probably the same as the Khang-Wû Dze in Book II, par. 9.

2. See Analects IX, vi, 4.]

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years I changed my methods, ploughing deeply and carefully covering up the seed; and my harvests were rich and abundant, so that all the year I had more than I could eat.' When Kwang-dze heard of his remarks, he said, 'Now-a-days, most men, in attending to their bodies and regulating their minds, correspond to the description of the Border-warden. They hide from themselves their Heaven(-given being); they leave (all care of) their (proper) nature; they extinguish their (proper) feelings; and they leave their spirit to die:--abandoning themselves to what is the general practice. Thus dealing with their nature like the farmer who is negligent of the clods in his soil, the illegitimate results of their likings and dislikings become their nature. The bushy sedges, reeds, and rushes, which seem at first to spring up to support our bodies, gradually eradicate our nature, and it becomes like a mass of running sores, ever liable to flow out, with scabs and ulcers, discharging in flowing matter from the internal heat. So indeed it is!'

7. Po Kü[1] was studying with Lâo Tan, and asked his leave to go and travel everywhere. Lao Tan said, 'Nay;--elsewhere it is just as here.' He repeated his request, and then Lâo Tan said, 'Where would you go first?' 'I would begin with Khî,' replied the disciple. Having got there, I would go to look at the criminals (who had been executed). With my arms I would raise (one of) them up and set him on his feet, and, taking off my court robes, I would cover him with them, appealing at

[1. We can only say of Po Kü that he was a disciple of Lâo-dze.]

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the same time to Heaven and bewailing his lot, while I said[1], "My son, my son, you have been one of the first to suffer from the great calamities that afflict the world[2]."' (Lâo Tan) said[1], '(It is said), ---Do not rob. Do not kill." (But) in the setting up of (the ideas of) glory and disgrace, we see the cause of those evils; in the accumulation of property and wealth, we see the causes of strife and contention. If now you set up the things against which men fret; if you accumulate what produces strife and contention among them; if you put their persons in such a state of distress, that they have no rest or ease, although you may wish that they should not come to the end of those (criminals), can your wish be realised?

'The superior men (and rulers) of old considered that the success (of their government) was to be found in (the state of) the people, and its failure to be sought in themselves; that the right might be with the people, and the wrong in themselves. Thus it was that if but a single person lost his life, they retired and blamed themselves. Now, however, it is not so. (Rulers) conceal what they want done, and hold those who do not know it to be stupid; they require what is very difficult, and condemn those who do not dare to undertake it; they impose heavy burdens, and punish those who are unequal to them; they require men to go far, and put them to death when they cannot accomplish the distance. When the people know that the utmost of their

[1. There are two ### here, and the difficulty in translating is to determine the subject of each.

2. The ### of the text here is taken as = ###.]

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strength will be insufficient, they follow it up with deceit. When (the rulers) daily exhibit much hypocrisy, how can the officers and people not be hypocritical? Insufficiency of strength produces hypocrisy; insufficiency of knowledge produces deception; insufficiency of means produces robbery. But in this case against whom ought the robbery and theft to be charged?'

8. When Kü Po-yü was in his sixtieth year, his views became changed in the course of it[1]. He had never before done anything but consider the views which he held to be right, but now he came to condemn them as wrong; he did not know that what he now called right was not what for fifty-nine years he had been calling wrong. All things have the life (which we know), but we do not see its root; they have their goings forth, but we do not know the door by which they depart. Men all honour that which lies within the sphere of their knowledge, but they do not know their dependence on what lies without that sphere which would be their (true) knowledge:--may we not call their case one of great perplexity? Ah! Ah! there is no escaping from this dilemma. So it is! So it is!

9. Kung-nî asked the Grand Historiographer[2] Tâ Thâo, (along with) Po Khang-khien and Khih-wei, saying, 'Duke Ling of Wei was so addicted to

[1. Confucius thought highly of this Kü Po-yü, and they were friends (Analects, XIV, 26; XV, 6). It would seem from this paragraph that, in his sixtieth year, he adopted the principles of Tâoism. Whether he really did so we cannot tell. See also Book IV, par. 5.

2. We must translate here in the singular, for in the historiographer's department there were only two officers with the title of 'Grand;' Po Khang-khien and Khih-wei would be inferior members of it.]

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drink, and abandoned to sensuality, that he did not attend to the government of his state. Occupied in his pursuit of hunting with his nets and bows, he kept aloof from the meetings of the princes. In what was it that he showed his title to the epithet of Ling[1]?' Tâ Thâo said, 'It was on account of those very things.' Po Khang-khien said, 'Duke Ling had three mistresses with whom he used to bathe in the same tub. (Once, however), when Shih-zhiû came to him with presents from the imperial court, he made his servants support the messenger in bearing the gifts[2]. So dissolute was he in the former case, and when he saw a man of worth, thus reverent was he to him. It was on this account that he was styled "Duke Ling." Khih-wei said, 'When duke Ling died, and they divined about burying him in the old tomb of his House, the answer was unfavourable; when they divined about burying him on Shâ-khiû, the answer was favourable. Accordingly they dug there to the depth of several fathoms, and found a stone coffin. Having washed and inspected it, they discovered an inscription, which said,

"This grave will not be available for your posterity;
Duke Ling will appropriate it for himself."

[1. Ling (###) as a posthumous epithet, has various meanings, none of them very bad, and some of them very good. Confucius ought to have been able to solve his question himself better than any of the historiographers, but he propounded his doubt to them for reasons which he, no doubt, had.

2 We are not to suppose that the royal messenger found him in the tub with his three wives or mistresses. The two incidents mentioned illustrate two different phases of his character, as some of the critics, and even the text itself, clearly indicate.]

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Thus that epithet of Ling had long been settled for the duke[1]. But how should those two be able to know this

10. Shâo Kih[2] asked Thâi-kung Thiâo[2], saying, 'What do we mean by "The Talk of the Hamlets and Villages?" The reply was, 'Hamlets and Villages are formed by the union--say of ten surnames and a hundred names, and are considered to be (the source of) manners and customs. The differences between them are united to form their common character, and what is common to them is separately apportioned to form the differences. If you point to the various parts which make up the body of a horse, you do not have the horse; but when the horse is before you, and all its various parts stand forth (as forming the animal), you speak of "the horse." So it is that the mounds and hills are made to be the elevations that they are by accumulations of earth which individually are but low. (So also rivers like) the Kiang and the Ho obtain their greatness by the union of (other smaller) waters with them. And (in the same way) the Great man exhibits the common sentiment of humanity by the union in himself of all its individualities. Hence when ideas come to him from without, though he

[1. This explanation is, of course, absurd.

2. These two names are both metaphorical, the former meaning 'Small Knowledge,' and the latter, 'The Grand Public and just Harmonizer.' Small Knowledge would look for the Tâo in the ordinary talk of ordinary men. The other teaches him that it is to be found in 'the Great man,' blending in himself what is 'just' in the sentiments and practice of all men. And so it is to be found in all the phenomena of nature, but it has itself no name, and does nothing.]

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has his own decided view, he does not hold it with bigotry; and when he gives out his own decisions, which are correct, the views of others do not oppose them. The four seasons have their different elemental characters, but they are not the partial gifts of Heaven, and so the year completes its course. The five official departments have their different duties, but the ruler does not partially employ any one of them, and so the kingdom is governed. (The gifts of) peace and war(are different), but the Great man does not employ the one to the prejudice of the other, and so the character (of his administration) is perfect. All things have their different constitutions and modes of actions, but the Tâo (which directs them) is free from all partiality, and therefore it has no name. Having no name, it therefore does nothing. Doing nothing, there is nothing which it does not do.

'Each season has its ending and beginning; each age has its changes and transformations; misery and happiness regularly alternate. Here our views are thwarted, and yet the result may afterwards have our approval; there we insist on our own views, and looking at things differently from others, try to correct them, while we are in error ourselves. The case may be compared to that of a great marsh, in which all its various vegetation finds a place, or we may look at it as a great hill, where trees and rocks are found on the same terrace. Such may be a description of what is intended by "The Talk of the Hamlets and Villages."'

Shâo Kih said, 'Well, is it sufficient to call it (an expression of) the Tâo?' Thâi-kung Thiâo said, 'It is not so. If we reckon up the number of things,

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they are not 10,000 merely. When we speak of them as "the Myriad Things," we simply use that large number by way of accommodation to denominate them. In this way Heaven and Earth are the greatest of all things that have form; the Yin and Yang are the greatest of all elemental forces. But the Tâo is common to them. Because of their greatness to use the Tâo or (Course) as a title and call it "the Great Tâo" is allowable. But what comparison can be drawn between it and "the Talk of the Hamlets and Villages?" To argue from this that it is a sufficient expression of the Tâo, is like calling a dog and a horse by the same name, while the difference between them is so great.'

11. Shâo Kih said, 'Within the limits of the four cardinal points, and the six boundaries of space, how was it that there commenced the production of all things?' Thâi-kung Thiâo replied, 'The Yin and Yang reflected light on each other, covered each other, and regulated each the other; the four seasons gave place to one another, produced one another, and brought one another to an end. Likings and dislikings, the avoidings of this and movements towards that, then arose (in the things thus produced), in their definite distinctness; and from this came the separation and union of the male and female. Then were seen now security and now insecurity, in mutual change; misery and happiness produced each other; gentleness and urgency pressed on each other; the movements of collection and dispersion were established:--these names and processes can be examined, and, however minute, can be recorded. The rules determining the order in which they follow one another, their mutual influence

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now acting directly and now revolving, how, when they are exhausted, they revive, and how they end and begin again; these are the properties belonging to things. Words can describe them and knowledge can reach to them; but with this ends all that can be said of things. Men who study the Tâo do not follow on when these operations end, nor try to search out how they began:--with this all discussion of them stops.'

Shâo Kih said, 'Kî Kän[1] holds that (the Tâo) forbids all action, and Kieh-dze[1] holds that it may perhaps allow of influence. Which of the two is correct in his statements, and which is one-sided in his ruling?' Thâi-kung Thiâo replied, 'Cocks crow and dogs bark;--this is what all men know. But men with the greatest wisdom cannot describe in words whence it is that they are formed (with such different voices), nor can they find out by thinking what they wish to do. We may refine on this small point; till it is so minute that there is no point to operate on, or it may become so great that there is no embracing it. "Some one caused it;" "No one did it;" but we are thus debating about things; and the end is that we shall find we are in error. "Some one caused it;"--then there was a real Being. "No one did it;"--then there was mere vacancy. To have a name and a real existence,-that is the condition of a thing. Not to have a name, and not

[1. Two masters of schools of Tâoism. Who the former was I do not know; but Sze-mâ Khien in the seventy-fourth Book of his Records mentions several Tâoist masters, and among them Kieh-dze, a native of Khî, 'a student of the arts of the Tâo and its Characteristics, as taught by Hwang-Tî and Lâo-dze, and who also published his views on the subject.']

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to have real being;--that is vacancy and no thing. We may speak and we may think about it, but the more we speak, the wider shall we be of the mark. Birth, before it comes, cannot be prevented; death, when it has happened, cannot be traced farther. Death and life are not far apart; but why they have taken place cannot be seen. That some one has caused them, or that there has been no action in the case are but speculations of doubt. When I look for their origin, it goes back into infinity; when I look for their end, it proceeds without termination. Infinite, unceasing, there is no room for words about (the Tâo). To regard it as in the category of things is the origin of the language that it is caused or that it is the result of doing nothing; but it would end as it began with things. The Tâo cannot have a (real) existence; if it has, it cannot be made to appear as if it had not. The name Tâo is a metaphor, used for the purpose of description[1]. To say that it causes or does nothing is but to speak of one phase of things, and has nothing to do with the Great Subject. If words were sufficient for the purpose, in a day's time we might exhaust it; since they are not sufficient, we may speak all day, and only exhaust (the subject of) things. The Tâo is the extreme to which things conduct us. Neither speech nor silence is sufficient to convey the notion of it. Neither by speech nor by silence can our thoughts about it have their highest expression.

[1. A very important statement with regard to the meaning of the name Tâo.]

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Wâi Wû, or 'What comes from Without[1].'

1. What comes from without cannot be determined beforehand. So it was that Lung-fäng[2] was killed; Pî-kan immolated; and the count of Kî (made to feign himself) mad, (while) O-lâi died[3], and Kieh and Kâu both perished. Rulers all wish their ministers to be faithful, but that faithfulness may not secure their confidence; hence Wû Yün became a wanderer along the Kiang[4], and Khang Hung died in Shû, where (the people) preserved his blood for three years, when it became changed into green jade[5]. Parents all wish their sons to be filial, but that filial duty may not secure their love; hence

[1. See Vol. xxxix, p. 155.

2. The name of Kwan Lung-fang, a great officer of Kieh, the tyrant of Hsü;--see Bk. IV, par. 1, et al.

3. A scion of the line of Khin whose fortunes culminated in Shih Hwang-Tî. O-lâi assisted the tyrant of Shang, and was put to death by king Wû of Kâu.

4. The famous Wû Dze-hsü, the hero of Revenge, who made his escape along the Kiang, in about B.C. 512, to Wû, after the murder of his father and elder brother by the king of Khû.

5. See Bk. X, par. 2. In the Zo-kwan, under the third year of duke Âi, it is related that the people of Kâu killed Khang Hung; but nothing is said of this being done in Shû, or of his blood turning to green jade! This we owe to the Khun Khiû of Lü.]

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Hsiâo-kî had to endure his sorrow, and Zäng Shän his grief[2].

When wood is rubbed against wood, it begins to burn; when metal is subjected to fire, it (melts and) flows. When the Yin and Yang act awry, heaven and earth are greatly perturbed; and on this comes the crash of thunder, and from the rain comes fire, which consumes great locust trees[3]. (The case of men) is still worse. They are troubled between two pitfalls[4], from which they cannot escape. Chrysalis-like, they can accomplish nothing. Their minds are as if hung up between heaven and earth. Now comforted, now pitied, they are plunged in difficulties. The ideas of profit and of injury rub against each other, and produce in them a very great fire. The harmony (of the mind) is consumed in the mass of men. Their moonlike intelligence cannot overcome the (inward) fire. They thereupon fall away more and more, and the Course (which they should pursue) is altogether lost.

2. The family of Kwang Kâu being poor, he went to ask the loan of some rice from the Marquis Superintendent of the Ho[5], who said, 'Yes, I shall be

[1. Said to have been the eldest son of king Wû Ting or Kâo Zung of the Yin dynasty. I do not know the events in his experience to which our author must be referring.

2. The well-known disciple of Confucius, famous for his filial piety.

3. The lightning accompanying a thunderstorm.

4. The ideas of profit and injury immediately mentioned.

5. In another version of this story, in Liû Hsiang's Shwo Yüan, XI, art. 13, the party applied to is 'duke Wän of Wei;' but this does not necessarily conflict with the text. The genuineness of the paragraph is denied by Lin Hsî-kung and others; but I seem to see the hand of Kwang-dze in it.]

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getting the (tax-) money from the people (soon), and I will then lend you three hundred ounces of silver;--will that do?' Kwang Kâu flushed with anger, and said, 'On the road yesterday, as I was coming here, I heard some one calling out. On looking round, I saw a goby in the carriage rut, and said to it, "Goby fish, what has brought you here?" The goby said, "I am Minister of Waves in the Eastern Sea. Have you, Sir, a gallon or a pint of water to keep me alive?" I replied, "Yes, I am going south to see the kings of Wû and Yüeh, and I will then lead a stream from the Western Kiang to meet you;--will that do?" The goby flushed with anger, and said, "I have lost my proper element, and I can here do nothing for myself; but if I could get a gallon or a pint of water, I should keep alive. Than do what you propose, you had better soon look for me in a stall of dry fish."'

3. A son of the duke of Zän[1], having provided himself with a great hook, a powerful black line, and fifty steers to be used as bait, squatted down on (mount) Kwâi Khî, and threw the line into the Eastern Sea. Morning after morning he angled thus, and for a whole year caught nothing. At the end of that time, a great fish swallowed the bait, and dived down, dragging the great hook with him.

Then it rose to the surface in a flurry, and flapped with its fins, till the white waves rose like hills, and the waters were lashed into fury. The noise was like that of imps and spirits, and spread terror

[1. I suppose this was merely a district of Khû, and the duke of it merely the officer in charge of it;--according to the practice of the rulers of Khû' after they usurped the title of King.]

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for a thousand lî. The prince having got such a fish, cut it in slices and dried them. From the Keh river[1] to the cast, and from Zhang-Wû[2] to the north, there was not one who did not eat his full from that fish; and in subsequent generations, story-tellers of small abilities have all repeated the story to one another with astonishment. (But) if the prince had taken his rod, with a fine line, and gone to pools and ditches, and watched for minnows and gobies, it would have been difficult for him to get a large fish. Those who dress up their small tales to obtain favour with the magistrates are far from being men of great understanding; and therefore one who has not heard the story of this scion of Zän is not fit to take any part in the government of the world;--far is he from being so[3].

4. Some literati, students of the Odes and Ceremonies, were breaking open a mound over a grave[4]. The superior among them spoke down to the others, 'Day is breaking in the east; how is the thing going on?' The younger men replied, 'We have not yet opened his jacket and skirt, but there is a pearl in the mouth. As it is said in the Ode,

[1. The ### of the text = ###, the still giving its name to the province so called.

2. Where Shun was buried.

3. This last sentence is difficult to construe, and to understand.--The genuineness of this paragraph is also questioned, and the style is inferior to that of the preceding.

4. I can conceive of Kwang-dze telling this story of some literati who had been acting as resurrectionists, as a joke against their class; but not of his writing it to form a part of his work.]

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"The bright, green grain
Is growing on the sides of the mound.
While living, he gave nothing away;
Why, when dead, should he hold a pearl in his mouth[1]?"'

Thereupon they took hold of the whiskers and pulled at the beard, while the superior introduced a piece of fine steel into the chin, and gradually separated the jaws, so as not to injure the pearl in the mouth.

5. A disciple of Lâo Lâi-dze[2], while he was out gathering firewood, met with Kung-nî. On his return, he told (his master), saying, 'There is a man there, the upper part of whose body is long and the lower part short. He is slightly hump-backed, and his ears are far back. When you look at him, he seems occupied with the cares of all within the four seas I do not know whose son he is.' Lâo Lâi-dze said, It is Khiû; call him here;' and when Kung-nî came, he said to him, 'Khiû, put away your personal conceit, and airs of wisdom, and show yourself to be indeed a superior man.' Kung-nî bowed and was retiring, when he abruptly changed his manner, and asked, 'Will the object I am pursuing be thereby advanced?' Lao Lâi-dze replied, 'You cannot bear the sufferings of this one age, and are stubbornly regardless of the

[1. This verse is not found, so far as I know, anywhere else.

2. Lâo Lâi-dze appears here as a contemporary of Confucius, and the master of a Tâoistic school, and this also is the view of him which we receive from the accounts in Sze-mâ Khien and Hwan-fû Mi. Sze-mâ says he published a work in fifteen sections on the usefulness of Tâoism. Some have imagined that he was the same as Lâo-dze himself, but there does not appear any ground for that opinion. He is one of the twenty-four examples of Filial Piety so celebrated among the Chinese; but I suspect that the accounts of him as such are fabrications. He certainly lectures Confucius here in a manner worthy of Lâo Tan.]

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evils of a myriad ages:--is it that you purposely make yourself thus unhappy? or is it that you have not the ability to comprehend the case? Your obstinate purpose to make men rejoice in a participation of your joy is your life-long shame, the procedure of a mediocre man. You would lead men by your fame; you would bind them to you by your secret art. Than be praising Yâo and condemning Kieh, you had better forget them both, and shut up your tendency to praise. If you reflect on it, it does nothing but injury; your action in it is entirely wrong. The sage is full of anxiety and indecision in undertaking anything, and so he is always successful. But what shall I say of your conduct? To the end it is all affectation.'

6. The ruler Yüan of Sung[1] (once) dreamt at midnight that a man with dishevelled hair peeped in on him at a side door and said, 'I was coming from the abyss of commissioned by the Clear Kiang to go to the place of the Earl of the Ho; but the fisherman Yü Zü has caught me.' When the ruler Yüan awoke, he caused a diviner to divine the meaning (of the dream), and was told, 'This is a marvellous tortoise.' The ruler asked if among the fishermen there was one called Yü Zü, and being told by his attendants that there was, he gave orders that he should be summoned to court. Accordingly the man next day appeared at court, and the ruler said, 'What have you caught (lately) in fishing?' The reply was, 'I have caught in my net a white tortoise, sieve-like, and five cubits round.' 'Present the prodigy here,' said the ruler; and, when it came, once and

[1. Compare in Bk. XXI, par. 7.]

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again he wished to kill it, once and again he wished to keep it alive. Doubting in his mind (what to do), he had recourse to divination, and obtained the answer, 'To kill the tortoise for use in divining will be fortunate.' Accordingly they cut the creature open, and perforated its shell in seventy-two places, and there was not a single divining slip which failed[1].

Kung-nî said, 'The spirit-like tortoise could show itself in a dream to the ruler Yüan, and yet it could not avoid the net of Yü Zü. Its wisdom could respond on seventy-two perforations without failing in a single divination, and yet it could not avoid the agony of having its bowels all scooped out. We see from this that wisdom is not without its perils, and spirit-like intelligence does not reach to everything. A man may have the greatest wisdom, but there are a myriad men scheming against him. Fishes do not fear the net, though they fear the pelican. Put away your small wisdom, and your great wisdom will be bright; discard your skilfulness, and you will become naturally skilful. A child when it is born needs no great master, and yet it becomes able to speak, living (as it does) among those who are able to speak.'

7. Hui-dze said to Kwang-dze, 'You speak, Sir, of what is of no use.' The reply was, 'When a man knows what is not useful, you can then begin to speak to him of what is useful. The earth for instance is certainly spacious and great; but what a

[1. The story of this wonderful tortoise is found at much greater length, and with variations, in Sze-mâ Khien's Records, Bk. LXVIII, q. v. The moral of it is given in the concluding remarks from Confucius.]

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man uses of it is only sufficient ground for his feet. If, however, a rent were made by the side of his feet, down to the yellow springs, could the man still make use of it?' Hui-dze said, 'He could not use it,' and Kwang-dze rejoined, 'Then the usefulness of what is of no use is clear[1].'

8. Kwang-dze said, 'If a man have the power to enjoy himself (in any pursuit), can he be kept from doing so? If he have not the power, can he so enjoy himself? There are those whose aim is bent on concealing themselves, and those who are determined that their doings shall leave no trace. Alas! they both shirk the obligations of perfect knowledge and great virtue. The (latter) fall, and cannot recover themselves; the (former) rush on like fire, and do not consider (what they are doing). Though men may stand to each other in the relation of ruler and minister, that is but for a time. In a changed age, the one of them would not be able to look down on the other. Hence it is said, "The Perfect man leaves no traces of his conduct."

'To honour antiquity and despise the present time is the characteristic of learners[2]; but even the disciples of Khih-wei[3] have to look at the present age; and who can avoid being carried along by its course? It is only the Perfect man who is able to enjoy himself in the world, and not be deflected from the right,

[1. See Bk. I, par. 6, and XXIV, par. 14. The conversations between our author and Hui-dze often turned on this subject.

2. Does our author mean by 'learners' the literati, the disciples of Confucius?

3. Khih-wei,--see Bk. VI, par. 7. Perhaps 'the disciples of Khih-wei' are those who in our author's time called themselves such, but were not.]

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to accommodate himself to others and not lose himself. He does not learn their lessons; he only takes their ideas into consideration, and does not discard them as different from his own.

9. 'It is the penetrating eye that gives clear vision, the acute car that gives quick hearing, the discriminating nose that gives discernment of odours, the practised mouth that gives the enjoyment of flavours, the active mind that acquires knowledge, and the far-reaching knowledge that constitutes virtue. In no case does the connexion with what is without like to be obstructed; obstruction produces stoppage; stoppage, continuing without intermission, arrests all progress; and with this all injurious effects spring up.

'The knowledge of all creatures depends on their breathing[1]. But if their breath be not abundant, it is not the fault of Heaven, which tries to penetrate them with it, day and night without ceasing; but men notwithstanding shut their pores against it. The womb encloses a large and empty space; the heart has its spontaneous and enjoyable movements. If their apartment be not roomy, wife and mother-in-law will be bickering; if the heart have not its spontaneous and enjoyable movements, the six faculties of perception[2] will be in mutual collision. That

[1. There seems to underlie this statement the Tâoist dogma about the regulation of the 'breath,' as conducive to long life and mental cultivation.

2 Probably what in Buddhist literature are called 'the Six Entrances (###)' what Mayers denominates 'The Six Organs of Admittance, or Bodily Sensations,' the Shadâyatana, the eye, ear, nose, mouth, body, and mind,--one of the twelve Nidânas in the Buddhist system.]

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the great forests, the heights and hills, are pleasant to men, is because their spirits cannot overcome (those distracting influences). Virtue overflows into (the love of) fame; (the love of) fame overflows into violence; schemes originate in the urgency (of circumstances); (the show of) wisdom comes from rivalry; the fuel (of strife) is produced from the obstinate maintenance (of one's own views); the business of offices should be apportioned in accordance with the approval of all. In spring, when the rain and the sunshine come seasonably, vegetation grows luxuriantly, and sickles and hoes begin to be prepared. More than half of what had fallen down becomes straight, and we do not know how.

10. 'Stillness and silence are helpful to those who are ill; rubbing the corners of the eyes is helpful to the aged; rest serves to calm agitation; but they are the toiled and troubled who have recourse to these things. Those who are at ease, and have not had such experiences, do not care to ask about them. The spirit-like man has had no experience of how it is that the sagely man keeps the world in awe, and so he does not inquire about it; the sagely man has had no experience of how it is that the man of ability and virtue keeps his age in awe, and so he does not inquire about it; the man of ability and virtue has had no experience of how it is that the superior man keeps his state in awe, and so he does not inquire about it. The superior man has had no experience of how it is that the small man keeps himself in agreement with his times that he should inquire about it.'

11. The keeper of the Yen Gate[1], on the death of

[1. The name of one of the gates in the wall of the capital of Sung.]

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his father, showed so much skill in emaciating his person[1] that he received the rank of 'Pattern for Officers.' Half the people of his neighbourhood (in consequence) carried their emaciation to such a point that they died. When Yâo wished to resign the throne to Hsü Yû, the latter ran away. When Thang offered his to Wû Kwang[2], Wû Kwang became angry. When Kî Thâ[3] heard it, he led his disciples, and withdrew to the river Kho, where the feudal princes came and condoled with him, and after three years, Shän Thû-tî[4] threw himself into the water. Fishing-stakes[5] are employed to catch fish; but when the fish are got, the men forget the stakes. Snares are employed to catch hares, but when the hares are got, men forget the snares. Words are employed to convey ideas; but when the ideas are apprehended, men forget the words. Fain would I talk with such a man who has forgot the words!

[1. The abstinences and privations in mourning were so many that there was a danger of their seriously injuring the health;--which was forbidden.

2. See Bk. VI, par. 3; but in the note there, Wû Kwang is said to have been of the time of Hwang-Tî; which is probably an error.

3. See IV, par. 3; but I do not know who Kî Thâ was, nor can I explain what is said of him here.

4. See again IV, par. 3.

5. According to some, 'baskets.' This illustration is quoted in the Inscription on the Nestorian Monument, II, 7.]

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Yü Yen, or 'Metaphorical Language[1].'

1. Of my sentences nine in ten are metaphorical; of my illustrations seven in ten are from valued writers. The rest of my words are like the water that daily fills the cup, tempered and harmonised by the Heavenly element in our nature[2].

The nine sentences in ten which are metaphorical are borrowed from extraneous things to assist (the comprehension of) my argument. (When it is said, for instance), 'A father does not act the part of matchmaker for his own son,' (the meaning is that) 'it is better for another man to praise the son than for his father to do so.' The use of such metaphorical language is not my fault, but the fault of men (who would not otherwise readily understand me).

Men assent to views which agree with their own, and oppose those which do not so agree. Those which agree with their own they hold to be right, and those which do not so agree they hold to be wrong. The seven out of ten illustrations taken from valued writers are designed to put an end to disputations. Those writers are the men of hoary eld, my predecessors in time. But such as are unversed

[1. See vol. xxxix, pp. 155, 156.

2. See Bk. II, par. 10.]

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in the warp and woof, the beginning and end of the subject, cannot be set down as of venerable eld, and regarded as the predecessors of others. If men have not that in them which fits them to precede others, they are without the way proper to man, and they who are without the way proper to man can only be pronounced defunct monuments of antiquity.

Words like the water that daily issues from the cup, and are harmonised by the Heavenly Element (of our nature), may be carried on into the region of the unlimited, and employed to the end of our years. But without words there is an agreement (in principle). That agreement is not effected by words, and an agreement in words is not effected by it. Hence it is said, 'Let there be no words.' Speech does not need words. One may speak all his life, and not have spoken a (right) word; and one may not have spoken all his life, and yet all his life been giving utterance to the (right) words. There is that which makes a thing allowable, and that which makes a thing not allowable. There is that which makes a thing right, and that which makes a thing not right. How is a thing right? It is right because it is right. How is a thing wrong? It is wrong because it is wrong. How is a thing allowable? It is allowable because it is so. How is a thing not allowable? It is not allowable because it is not so. Things indeed have what makes them right, and what makes them allowable. There is nothing which has not its condition of right; nothing which has not its condition of allowability. But without the words of the (water-) cup in daily use, and harmonised by the Heavenly Element (in our

{p. 144}

nature), what one can continue long in the possession of these characteristics?

All things are divided into their several classes, and succeed to one another in the same way, though of different bodily forms. They begin and end as in an unbroken ring, though how it is they do so be not apprehended. This is what is called the Lathe of Heaven; and the Lathe of Heaven is the Heavenly Element in our nature.

2. Kwang-dze said to Hui-Sze, 'When Confucius was in his sixtieth year, in that year his views changed[1]. What he had before held to be right, he now ended by holding to be wrong; and he did not know whether the things which he now pronounced to be right were not those which he had for fifty-nine years held to be wrong.' Hui-dze replied, 'Confucius with an earnest will pursued the acquisition of knowledge, and acted accordingly.' Kwang-dze rejoined, 'Confucius disowned such a course, and never said that it was his. He said, "Man receives his powers from the Great Source[2] (of his being), and he should restore them to their (original) intelligence in his life. His singing should be in accordance with the musical tubes, and his speech a model for imitation. When profit and righteousness are set before him, and his liking (for the latter) and dislike (of the

[1. Compare this with the same language about Kü Po-yü in Bk. XXV, par. 8. There is no proof to support our author's assertion that the views of Confucius underwent any change.

2. 'The Great Source (Root)' here is generally explained by 'the Grand Beginning.' It is not easy to say whether we are to understand an ideal condition of man designed from the first, or the condition of every man as he is born into the world. On the 'powers' received by man, see Mencius VI, i, 6.]

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former), his approval and disapproval, are manifested, that only serves to direct the speech of men (about him). To make men in heart submit, and not dare to stand up in opposition to him; to establish the fixed law for all under heaven:--ah! ah! I have not attained to that."'

3. Zäng-dze twice took office, and on the two occasions his state of mind was different. He said, 'While my parents were alive I took office, and though my emolument was only three fû[1] (of grain), my mind was happy. Afterwards when I took office, my emolument was three thousand kung[2]; but I could not share it with my parents, and my mind was sad.' The other disciples asked Kung-nî, saying, 'Such an one as Shän may be pronounced free from all entanglement:--is he to be blamed for feeling as he did[3]?' The reply was, 'But he was subject to entanglement[4]. If he had been free from it, could he have had that sadness? He would have looked on his three fû and three thousand kung no more than on a heron or a mosquito passing before him.'

4. Yen Khäng Dze-yû said to Tung-kwo, Dze-khî[5], 'When I (had begun to) hear your instructions, the first year, I continued a simple rustic; the second

[1. A fû = ten tâu and four shing, or sixty-four shing, the shing at present being rather less than an English pint.

2. A hung = sixty-four tâu; but there are various accounts of its size.

3. This sentence is difficult to construe.

4. But Confucius could not count his love for his parents an entanglement.

5. We must suppose this master to be the same as the Nan-kwo Dze-khî of Bk. II.]

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year, I became docile; the third year, I comprehended (your teaching); the fourth year, I was (plastic) as a thing; the fifth year, I made advances; the sixth year, the spirit entered (and dwelt in me); the seventh year, (my nature as designed by) Heaven was perfected; the eighth year, I knew no difference between death and life; the ninth year, I attained to the Great Mystery[1].

'Life has its work to do, and death ensues, (as if) the common character of each were a thing prescribed. Men consider that their death has its cause; but that life from (the operation of) the Yang has no cause. But is it really so? How does (the Yang) operate in this direction? Why does it not operate there?

'Heaven has its places and spaces which can be calculated; (the divisions of) the earth can be assigned by men. But how shall we search for and find out (the conditions of the Great Mystery)? We do not know when and how (life) will end, but how shall we conclude that it is not determined (from without)? and as we do not know when and how it begins, how should we conclude that it is not (so) determined?

'In regard to the issues of conduct which we deem appropriate, how should we conclude that there are no spirits presiding over them; and where those issues seem inappropriate, how should we conclude that there are spirits presiding over them?'

[1. In illustration of the text here Lû Shû-kih refers to the use of Miâo (###) in the account of the term 'Spirit,' in the fifth Appendix to the Yî, par. 10, as meaning 'the subtle (presence and operation of God) with all things.' Dze-yû's further exposition of his attainments is difficult to understand fully.]

{p. 147}

5. The penumbrae (once) asked the shadow[1], saying, 'Formerly you were looking down, and now you are looking up; formerly you had your hair tied up, and now it is dishevelled; formerly you were sitting, and now you have risen up; formerly you were walking, and now you have stopped:--how is all this?' The shadow said, 'Venerable Sirs, how do you ask me about such small matters? These things all belong to me, but I do not know how they do so. I am (like) the shell of a cicada or the cast-off skin of a snake[2];--like them, and yet not like them. With light and the sun I make my appearance; with darkness and the night I fade away. Am not I dependent on the substance from which I am thrown? And that substance is itself dependent on something else! When it comes, I come with it; when it goes, I go with it. When it comes under the influence of the strong Yang, I come under the same. Since we are both produced by that strong Yang, what occasion is there for you to question me?'

6. Yang Dze-kü[3] had gone South to Phei[4], while Lâo Tan was travelling in the west in Khin[5]. (He thereupon) asked (Lao-dze) to come to the border (of Phei), and went himself to Liang, where be met him. Lâo-dze stood in the middle of the way, and, looking up to heaven, said with a sigh, 'At first I thought that you might be taught, but now I see that you cannot be.' Yang Dze-kü made no reply;

[1. Compare Bk. II, par. 11.

2. Such is the reading of Ziâo Hung.

3. No doubt the Yang Kû of Lieh-dze and Mencius.

4. See in XIV, 26 b.

5. In the borders of Phei; can hardly be the great State.]

{p. 148}

and when they came to their lodging-house, he brought in water for the master to wash his hands and rinse his mouth, along with a towel and comb. He then took off his shoes outside the door, went forward on his knees, and said, 'Formerly, your disciple wished to ask you, Master, (the reason of what you said); but you were walking, and there was no opportunity, and therefore I did not presume to speak. Now there is an opportunity, and I beg to ask why you spoke as you did.' Lâo-dze replied, 'Your eyes are lofty, and you stare;--who would live with you? The purest carries himself as if he were soiled; the most virtuous seems to feel himself defective.' Yang Dze-kü looked abashed and changed countenance, saying, 'I receive your commands with reverence.'

When he first went to the lodging-house, the people of it met him and went before him. The master of it carried his mat for him, and the mistress brought the towel and comb. The lodgers left their mats, and the cook his fire-place (as he passed them). When he went away, the others in the house would have striven with him about (the places for) their mats[1].

[1. So had his arrogant superciliousness given place to humility.]

{p. 149}



Zang Wang, or 'Kings who have wished to resign the Throne[1].'

1. Yâo proposed to resign the throne to Hsü Yû, who would not accept it. He then offered it to Dze-kâu Kih-fû[2], but he said, 'It is not unreasonable to propose that I should occupy the throne, but I happen to be suffering under a painful sorrow and illness. While I am engaged in dealing with it, I have not leisure to govern the kingdom.' Now the throne is the most important of all positions, and yet this man would not occupy it to the injury of his life; how much less would he have allowed any other thing to do so! But only he who does not care to rule the kingdom is fit to be entrusted with it.

Shun proposed to resign the throne to Dze-kâu Kih-po[2], who declined in the very same terms as Kih-fû had done. Now the kingdom is the greatest of all concerns, and yet this man would not give his life in exchange for the throne. This shows how they who possess the Tâo differ from common men.

[1. See vol. xxxix, pp. 156, 157.

2. We know nothing of this man but what is related here. He is, no doubt, a fictitious character. Kih-fû and Kih-po are supposed to be the same individual. See Hwang-fû Mî, I, 7.]

{p. 150}

Shun proposed to resign the throne to Shan Küan[1], who said, 'I am a unit in the midst of space and time. In winter I wear skins and furs; in summer, grass-cloth and linen; in spring I plough and sow, my strength being equal to the toil; in autumn I gather in my harvest, and am prepared to cease from labour and eat. At sunrise I get up and work; at sunset I rest. So do I enjoy myself between heaven and earth, and my mind is content:--why should I have anything to do with the throne? Alas! that you, Sir, do not know me better!' Thereupon he declined the proffer, and went away, deep among the hills, no man knew where.

Shun proposed to resign the throne to his friend, a farmer of Shih-hû[2]. The farmer, however, said (to himself), 'How full of vigour does our lord show himself, and how exuberant is his strength! If Shun with all his powers be not equal (to the task of government, how should I be so?).' On this he took his wife on his back, led his son by the hand, and went away to the sea-coast, from which to the end of his life he did not come back.

When Thâi-wang Than-fû[3] was dwelling in Pin[3], the wild tribes of the North attacked him. He tried to serve them with skins and silks, but they were not satisfied. He tried to serve them with dogs and horses, but they were not satisfied, and then

[1. Nor do we know more of Shan Küan, though Mî relates a visit of Yâo to him.

2. Name of a place; where it was is very uncertain.

3. An ancestor of the House of Kâu, who about B.C. 1325 removed from Pin (in the present small department so called of Shen-hsî), and settled in the district of Khî-shan, department of Fäng-zhiang. He was the grandfather of king Wän.]

{p. 151}

with pearls and jade, but they were not satisfied. What they sought was his territory. Thâi-wang Than-fû said (to his people), 'To dwell with the elder brother and cause the younger brother to be killed, or with the father and cause the son to be killed,--this is what I cannot bear to do. Make an effort, my children, to remain here. What difference is there between being my subjects, or the subjects of those wild people? And I have heard that a man does not use that which he employs for nourishing his people to injure them.' Thereupon he took his staff and switch and left, but the people followed him in an unbroken train, and he established a (new) state at the foot of mount Khî[1]. Thus Thâi-wang Than-fû might be pronounced one who could give its (due) honour to life. Those who are able to do so, though they may be rich and noble, will not, for that which nourishes them, injure their persons; and though they may be poor and mean, will not, for the sake of gain, involve their bodies (in danger). The men of the present age who occupy high offices and are of honourable rank all lose these (advantages) again, and in the prospect of gain lightly expose their persons to ruin:--is it not a case of delusion?

The people of Yüeh three times in succession killed their ruler, and the prince Sâu[2], distressed by it, made his escape to the caves of Tan, so that Yüeh was left without a ruler. The people sought

[1. See note 3, p. 150.

2. Sze-mâ Khien takes up the history of Yüeh at a later period, and we have from him no details of this prince Sâu. Tan-hsüeh was the name of a district in the south of Yüeh, in which was a valley with caves containing cinnabar;--the fabled home of the phœnix.]

{p. 152}

for the prince, but could not find him, till (at last) they followed him to the cave of Tan. The prince was not willing to come out to them, but they smoked him out with moxa, and made him mount the royal chariot. As he took hold of the strap, and mounted the carriage, he looked up to heaven, and called out, 'O Ruler, O Ruler, could you not have spared me this?' Prince Sâu did not dislike being ruler;--he disliked the evil inseparable from being so. It may be said of him that he would not for the sake of a kingdom endanger his life; and this indeed was the reason why the people of Yüeh wanted to get him for their ruler.

2. Han[1] and Wei[1] were contending about some territory which one of them had wrested from the other. Dze-hwâ Dze[2] went to see the marquis Kâo-hsî (of Han)[3], and, finding him looking sorrowful, said, 'Suppose now that all the states were to sign an agreement before you to the effect that "Whoever should with his left hand carry off (the territory in dispute) should lose his right hand, and whoever should do so with his right hand should lose his left hand, but that, nevertheless, he who should carry it off was sure to obtain the whole kingdom;" would your lordship feel yourself able to carry it off?' The marquis said, 'I would not carry it off,' and Dze-hwâ rejoined, 'Very good. Looking at the thing from this point of view, your two arms are of more value to you than the whole kingdom. But

[1. Two of the three states into which the great state of Zin was divided about the beginning of the fifth century B.C.

2. A native, we may call him a philosopher, of Wei.

3. Began his rule in B.C. 359.]

{p. 153}

your body is of more value than your two arms, and Han is of much less value than the whole kingdom. The territory for which you are now contending is further much less important than Han:--your lordship, since you feel so much concern for your body, should not be endangering your life by indulging your sorrow.

The marquis Kâo-hsî said, 'Good! Many have given me their counsel about this matter; but I never heard what you have said.' Dze-hwâ Dze may be said to have known well what was of great importance and what was of little.

3. The ruler of Lû, having heard that Yen Ho[1] had attained to the Tâo, sent a messenger, with a gift of silks, to prepare the way for further communication with him. Yen Ho was waiting at the door of a mean house, in a dress of coarse hempen cloth, and himself feeding a cow[2]. When the messenger arrived, Yen Ho himself confronted him. 'Is this,' said the messenger, 'the house of Yen Ho?' 'It is,' was the reply; and the other was presenting the silks to him, when he said, 'I am afraid you heard (your instructions) wrongly, and that he who sent you will blame you. You had better make sure.' The messenger on this returned, and made sure that he was right; but when he came back, and sought for Yen Ho, he was not to be found.

Yes; men like Yen Ho do of a truth dislike riches and honours. Hence it is said, 'The true

[1. Perhaps the Yen Ho of IV, 5.

2. The same thing is often seen at the present day. The party in charge of the cow pours its prepared food down its throat from a joint of bamboo.]

{p. 154}

object of the Tâo is the regulation of the person. Quite subordinate to this is its use in the management of the state and the clan; while the government of the kingdom is but the dust and refuse of it.' From this we may see that the services of the Tîs and Kings are but a surplusage of the work of the sages, and do not contribute to complete the person or nourish the life. Yet the superior men of the present age will, most of them, throw away their lives for the sake of their persons, in pursuing their (material) objects;--is it not cause for grief? Whenever a sage is initiating any movement, he is sure to examine the motive which influences him, and what he is about to do. Here, however, is a man, who uses a pearl like that of the marquis of Sui[1] to shoot a bird at a distance of 10,000 feet. All men will laugh at him; and why? Because the thing which he uses is of great value, and what he wishes to get is of little. And is not life of more value than the pearl of the marquis of Sui?

4. Dze[2] Lieh-dze[2] was reduced to extreme poverty, and his person had a hungry look. A visitor mentioned the case to Dze-yang, (the premier) of Käng, saying, 'Lieh Yü-khâu, I believe, is a scholar who has attained to the Tâo. Is it because our ruler does not love (such) scholars, that he should be living in his state in such poverty?' Dze-yang immediately ordered an officer to send to him a supply of grain.

[1. Sui was a small feudal state, a dependency of Wei. its name remains in the Sui-kâu, Teh-an department, Hû-pei. The story is that one of its lords having healed a wounded snake, the creature one night brought him a large pearl in its mouth.

2. The phraseology is peculiar. See Introductory Note on Bk. XXXII.]

{p. 155}

When Lieh-dze saw the messenger, he bowed to him twice, and declined the gift, on which the messenger went away. On Lieh-dze's going into the house, his wife looked to him and beat her breast, saying, 'I have heard that the wife and children of a possessor of the Tâo all enjoy plenty and ease, but now we look starved. The ruler has seen his error, and sent you a present of food, but you would not receive it;--is it appointed (for us to suffer thus)?' Dze Lieh-dze laughed and said to her, 'The ruler does not himself know me. Because of what some one said to him, he sent me the grain; but if another speak (differently) of me to him, he may look on me as a criminal. This was why I did not receive the grain.'

In the end it did come about, that the people, on an occasion of trouble and disorder, put Dze-yang to death.

5. When king Kâo of Khû[1] lost his kingdom, the sheep-butcher Yüeh followed him in his flight. When the king (recovered) his kingdom and returned to it, and was going to reward those who had followed him, on coming to the sheep-butcher Yüeh, that personage said, 'When our Great King lost his kingdom, I lost my sheep-killing. When his majesty got back his kingdom, I also got back my sheep-killing. My income and rank have been recovered; why speak further of rewarding me?' The king, (on hearing of this reply), said, 'Force him (to take the reward);' but Yüeh said, 'It was not through any crime of mine that the king lost his kingdom,

[1. B.C. 515-489. He was driven from his capital by an invasion of Wû, directed by Wû Dze-hsü.]

{p. 156}

and therefore I did not dare to submit to the death (which would have been mine if I had remained in the capital). And it was not through any service of mine that he recovered his kingdom, and therefore I do not dare to count myself worthy of any reward from him.'

The king (now) asked that the butcher should be introduced to him, but Yüeh said, 'According to the law of Khû, great reward ought to be given to great service, and the recipient then be introduced to the king; but now my wisdom was not sufficient to preserve the kingdom, nor my courage sufficient to die at the hands of the invaders. When the army of Wû entered, I was afraid of the danger, and got out of the way of the thieves;--it was not with a distinct purpose (of loyalty) that I followed the king. And now he wishes, in disregard of the law, and violations of the conditions of our social compact, to see me in court;--this is not what I would like to be talked of through the kingdom.' The king said to Dze-khî, the Minister of War, 'The position of the sheep-butcher Yüeh is low and mean, but his setting forth of what is right is very high; do you ask him for me to accept the place of one of my three most distinguished nobles[1].' (This being communicated to Yüeh), he said, 'I know that the place of such a distinguished noble is nobler than a sheep-butcher's stall, and that the salary of 10,000 kung is more than its profits. But how should 1, through my greed of rank and emolument, bring on our ruler the name of an unlawful dispensation of his gifts? I dare not

[1. Literally, 'My three banners or flags,' emblems of the favourite of the sovereign.]

{p. 157}

respond to your wishes, but desire to return to my stall as the sheep-butcher.' Accordingly he did not accept (the proffered reward).

6. Yüan Hsien[1] was living in Lû. His house, whose walls were only a few paces round, looked as if it were thatched with a crop of growing grass; its door of brushwood was incomplete, with branches of a mulberry tree for its side-posts; the window of each of its two apartments was formed by an earthenware jar (in the wall), which was stuffed with some coarse serge. It leaked above, and was damp on the ground beneath; but there he sat composedly, playing on his guitar. Dze-kung, in an inner robe of purple and an outer one of pure white, riding in a carriage drawn by two large horses, the hood of which was too high to get into the lane (leading to the house), went to see him. Yüan Hsien, in a cap made of bark, and slippers without heels, and with a stalk of hellebore for a staff, met him at the door. 'Alas! Master,' said Dze-kung, 'that you should be in such distress!' Yüan Hsien answered him, 'I have heard that to have no money is to be poor, and that not to be able to carry one's learning into practice is to be distressed. I am poor but not in distress.' Dze-kung shrank back, and looked ashamed, on which the other laughed and said, 'To act with a view to the world's (praise); to pretend to be public-spirited and yet be a partisan; to learn in order to please men; to teach for the sake of one's own gain; to conceal one's wickedness under the garb of

[1. A disciple of Confucius, called also Yüan Sze;--see Confucian Analects VI, iii, 3. With the description of his house or hut, compare in the Lî Kî, XXVIII, 10.]

{p. 158}

benevolence and righteousness; and to be fond of the show of chariots and horses:--these are things which Hsien cannot bear to do.'

Zäng-dze was residing in Wei. He wore a robe quilted with hemp, and had no outer garment; his countenance looked rough and emaciated; his hands and feet were horny and callous; he would be three days without lighting a fire; in ten years he did not have a new suit; if he put his cap on straight, the strings would break; if he drew tight the overlap of his robe, his elbow would be seen; in putting on his shoes, the heels would burst them. Yet dragging his shoes along, he sane, the 'Sacrificial Odes of Shang' with a voice that filled heaven and earth as if it came from a bell or a sounding stone. The Son of Heaven could not get him to be a minister; no feudal prince could get him for his friend. So it is that he who is nourishing his mind's aim forgets his body, and he who is nourishing his body discards all thoughts of gain, and he who is carrying out the Tâo forgets his own mind.

Confucius said to Yen Hui, 'Come here, Hui. Your family is poor, and your position is low; why should you not take office?' Hui replied, 'I have no wish to be in office. Outside the suburban district I possess fields to the extent of fifty acres, which are sufficient to supply me with congee; and inside it I have ten acres, which are sufficient to supply me with silk and flax. I find my pleasure in playing on my lute, and your doctrines, Master, which I study, are sufficient for my enjoyment; I do not wish to take office.' Confucius looked sad, changed countenance, and said, "How good is the mind of Hui! I have heard that he who is contented

{p. 159}

will not entangle himself with the pursuit of gain, that he who is conscious of having gained (the truth) in himself is not afraid of losing other things, and that he who cultivates the path of inward rectification is not ashamed though he may have no official position. I have long been preaching this; but to-day I see it realised in Hui:--this is what I have gained.'

7. Prince Mâu[1] of Kung-shan[1] spoke to Kan-dze[2], saying, 'My body has its place by the streams and near the sea, but my mind dwells at the court of Wei;--what have you to say to me in the circumstances?' Kan-dze replied, 'Set the proper value on your life. When one sets the proper value on his life, gain seems to him unimportant.' The prince rejoined, 'I know that, but I am not able to overcome (my Wishes).' The reply was, 'If you cannot master yourself (in the matter), follow (your inclinations so that) your spirit may not be dissatisfied. When you cannot master yourself, and try to force yourself where your spirit does not follow, this is what is called doing yourself a double injury; and those who so injure themselves are not among the long-lived.'

Mâu of Wei was the son of a lord of ten thousand chariots. For him to live in retirement among crags and caves was more difficult than for a scholar who had not worn the dress of office. Although he

[1. Prince Mâu was a son of the marquis of Wei, and had been appointed to the appanage of Kung-shan,--corresponding to part of the present Ting Kâu in Pei Kih-lî.

2. A worthy officer or thinker of Wei. One is not sure that his advice was altogether good.]

{p. 160}

had not attained to the Tâo, he maybe said to have had some idea of it.

8. When Confucius was reduced to extreme distress between Khän and Zhâi, for seven days he had no cooked meat to eat, but only some soup of coarse vegetables without any rice in it. His countenance wore the appearance of great exhaustion, and yet he kept playing on his lute and singing inside the house. Yen Hui (was outside), selecting the vegetables, while Dze-la and Dze-kung were talking together, and said to him, 'The Master has twice been driven from Lû; he had to flee from Wei; the tree (beneath which he rested) was cut down in Sung; he was reduced to extreme distress in Shang and Kâu; he is held in a state of siege here between Khän and Zhâi; any one who kills him will be held guiltless; there is no prohibition against making him a prisoner. And yet he keeps playing and singing, thrumming his lute without ceasing. Can a superior man be without the feeling of shame to such an extent as this?' Yen Hui gave them no reply, but went in and told (their words) to Confucius, who pushed aside his lute, and said, 'Yû and Zhze are small men. Call them here, and I will explain the thing to them.'

When they came in, Dze-lû said, 'Your present condition may be called one of extreme distress.' Confucius replied, 'What words are these! When the Superior man has free course with his principles, that is what we call his success; when such course is denied, that is what we call his failure. Now I hold in my embrace the principles of benevolence and righteousness, and with them meet the evils of a disordered age;--where is the proof of my being

{p. 161}

in extreme distress? Therefore looking inwards and examining myself, I have no difficulties about my principles; though I encounter such difficulties (as the present), I do not lose my virtue. It is when winter's cold is come, and the hoar-frost and snow are falling, that we know the vegetative power of the pine and cypress. This strait between Khän and Zhâi is fortunate for me.' He then took back his lute so that it emitted a twanging sound, and began to play and sing. (At the same time) Dze-lû, hurriedly, seized a shield, and began to dance, while Dze-kung said, 'I did not know (before) the height of heaven nor the depth of the earth.'

The ancients who had got the Tâo were happy when reduced to extremity, and happy when having free course. Their happiness was independent of both these conditions. The Tâo and its characteristics!--let them have these and distress and success come to them as cold and heat, as wind and rain in the natural order of things. Thus it was that Hsü Yû found pleasure on the north of the river Ying, and that the earl of Kung enjoyed himself on the top of mount (Kung)[1].

9. Shun proposed to resign the throne to his friend, the Northerner Wû-kâi[2], who said, 'A strange man you are, O sovereign! You (first) lived among the channeled fields, and then your

[1. This takes us to the famous Kung-ho period (B.C. 842-828), but our author evidently follows the account of it found in the 'Bamboo Books;'--see the prolegomena to the Shû King, p. 154.

2. We found, in Book XXI (see vol. xxxix, p. 133), Wû-kâi as the name of Thien Dze-fang. Here is the same name belonging to a much earlier man, 'a man of the north.']

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place was in the palace of Yâo. And not only so:--you now further wish to extend to me the stain of your disgraceful doings. I am ashamed to see you. And on this he threw himself into the abyss of Khing-läng[1].

When Thang was about to attack Kieh, he took counsel with Pien Sui, who said, 'It is no business of mine.' Thang then said, 'To whom should I apply?' And the other said, 'I do not know.' Thang then took counsel with Wû Kwang, who gave the same answer as Pien Sui; and when asked to whom he should apply, said in the same way, 'I do not know.' 'Suppose,' Thang then said, 'I apply to Î Yin, what do you say about him?' The reply was, 'He has a wonderful power in doing what is disgraceful, and I know nothing more about him!'

Thang thereupon took counsel with Î Yin, attacked Kieh, and overcame him, after which he proposed to resign the throne to Pien Sui, who declined it, saying, 'When you were about to attack Kieh, and sought counsel from me, you must have supposed me to be prepared to be a robber. Now that you have conquered Kieh, and propose to resign the throne to me, you must consider me to be greedy. I have been born in an age of disorder, and a man without principle twice comes, and tries to extend to me the stain of his disgraceful proceedings!--I cannot bear to hear the repetition of his proposals.' With this he threw himself into the Kâu[2] water and died.

[1. At the foot of a hill in the present department of Nan-yang, Ho-nan.

2. The reading uncertain.]

{p. 163}

Thang further made proffer of the throne to Wû Kwang[1], saying, 'The wise man has planned it; the martial man has carried it through; and the benevolent man should occupy it:--this was the method of antiquity. Why should you, Sir, not take the position?' Wû Kwang refused the proffer, saying, 'To depose the sovereign is contrary to right; to kill the people is contrary to benevolence. When another has encountered the risks, if I should accept the gain of his adventure, I should violate my disinterestedness. I have heard it said, "If it be not right for him to do so, one should not accept the emolument; in an age of unprincipled (government), one should not put foot on the soil (of the) country:"--how much less should I accept this position of honour! I cannot bear to see you any longer.' And with this he took a stone oil his back, and drowned himself in the Lü water[2].

10. Formerly, at the rise of the Kâu dynasty, there were two brothers who lived in Kû-kû[3], and were named Po-î and Shû-khî. They spoke together and said, 'We have heard that in the west there is one who seems to rule according to the Right Way; let us go and see.' (Accordingly) they came to the south of (mount) Khî; and when king Wû heard of them, he sent (his brother) Shû Tan to see them, and make a covenant with them, engaging that their wealth should be second (only to that of the king), and that their offices should be of the first rank,

[1. Not elsewhere heard of, save in the same connexion.

2. In the west of Liâo-tung.

3. A small principality, in the present Lwan-kâu, department of Yung-phing Kih-lî.]

{p. 164}

and instructing him to bury the covenant with the blood of the victim after they had smeared the corners of their mouths with it[1]. The brothers looked at each other and laughed, saying, 'Ah! How strange! This is not what we call the Right Way. Formerly, when Shän Näng had the kingdom, he offered his sacrifices at the proper seasons and with the utmost reverence, but without praying for any blessing. Towards men he was leal-hearted and sincere, doing his utmost in governing them, but without seeking anything for himself When it was his pleasure to use administrative measures, he did so; and a sterner rule when he thought that would be better. He did not by the ruin of others establish his own power; he did not exalt himself by bringing others low; he did not, when the time was opportune, seek his own profit. But now Kâu, seeing the disorder of Yin, has suddenly taken the government into its hands; with the high it has taken counsel, and with those below employed bribes; it relies on its troops to maintain the terror of its might; it makes covenants over victims to prove its good faith; it vaunts its proceedings to please the masses; it kills and attacks for the sake of gain:--this is simply overthrowing disorder and changing it for tyranny. We have heard that the officers of old, in an age of good government, did not shrink from their duties, and in an age of disorder did not recklessly seek to remain in office. Now the kingdom is in a state of darkness; the virtue of Kâu is decayed. Than to join with it and

[1. According to the usual forms in which a covenant was made and established. The translation is free and diffuse.]

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lay our persons in the dust, it is better for us to abandon it, and maintain the purity of our conduct.'

The two princes then went north to the hill of Shâu-yang[1], where they died of starvation. If men such as they, in the matter of riches and honours, can manage to avoid them, (let them do so); but they must not depend on their lofty virtue to pursue any perverse course, only gratifying their own tendencies, and not doing service in their time:--this was the style of these two princes.

[1. In the present department of Phû-kau, Shan-hsî.]

{p. 166}



Tâo Kih, or 'The Robber Kih[1].'

1. Confucius was on terms of friendship with Liû-hsîa Kî[2], who had a brother named Tâo Kih. This Tâo Kih had 9,000 followers, who marched at their will through the kingdom, assailing and oppressing the different princes. They dug through walls and broke into houses; they drove away people's cattle and horses; they carried off people's wives and daughters. In their greed to get, they forgot the claims of kinship, and paid no regard to their parents and brethren. They did not sacrifice to their ancestors. Wherever they passed through the country, in the larger states the people guarded their city walls, and in the smaller the people took to their strongholds. All were distressed by them.

Confucius spoke to Liû-hsiâ Kî, saying, 'Fathers should be able to lay down the law to their sons,

[1. See vol. xxxix, pp. 157, 158.

2. Better known as Liû-hsiâ Hui, under which designation he is mentioned both in the Confucian Analects and in Mencius, but it is an anachronism to say that Confucius was on terms of friendship with him. He was a scion of the distinguished family of Kan in Lû, and was called Kan Hwo and Kan Khin. We find, in the Zo Kwan, a son of his employed in an important expedition in B.C. 634, so that he, probably, had passed away before Confucius was born in B.C. 551, and must certainly have deceased before the death of Dze-lû (480), which is mentioned in the Book.]

{p. 167}

and elder to instruct their younger brothers. If they are unable to do so, they do not fulfil the duties of the relationships which they sustain. You, Sir, are one of the most talented officers of the age, and your younger brother is this Robber Kih. He is a pest in the kingdom, and you are not able to instruct him better; I cannot but be ashamed of you, and I beg to go for you and give him counsel.' Liû-hsiâ Kî replied, 'You say, Sir, that fathers must be able to lay down the law to their sons, and elder to instruct their younger brothers, but if sons will not listen to the orders of their fathers, nor the younger receive the lessons of their elder brothers, though one may have your powers of persuasion, what is to be done? And, moreover, Kih is a man whose mind is like a gushing fountain, and his will like a whirlwind; he is strong enough to resist all enemies, and clever enough to gloss over his wrong-doings. If you agree with him, he is glad; if you oppose him, he is enraged; and he readily meets men with the language of abuse. You must not go to him.'

Confucius, however, did not attend to this advice. With Yen Hui as his charioteer, and Dze-kung seated on the right, he went to see Tâo Kih, whom he found with his followers halted on the south of Thâi-shan, and mincing men's livers, which he gave them to eat. Confucius alighted from his carriage, and went forward, till he saw the usher, to whom he said, 'I, Khung Khiû of Lî, have heard of the general's lofty righteousness,' bowing twice respectfully to the man as he said so. The usher went in and announced the visitor. But when Tâo Kih heard of the arrival, he flew into a great

{p. 168}

rage; his eyes became like blazing stars, and his hair rose up and touched his cap. 'Is not this fellow,' said he, 'Khung Khiû, that artful hypocrite of Lû? Tell him from me, "You invent speeches and babble away, appealing without ground to (the examples of) Wän and Wû The ornaments on your cap are as many as the branches of a tree, and your girdle is (a piece of skin) from the ribs of a dead ox. The more you talk, the more nonsense you utter. You get your food without (the labour of) ploughing, and your clothes without (that of) weaving. You wag your lips and make your tongue a drum-stick. You arbitrarily decide what is right and what is wrong, thereby leading astray the princes throughout the kingdom, and making its learned scholars not occupy their thoughts with their proper business. You recklessly set up your filial piety and fraternal duty, and curry favour with the feudal princes, the wealthy and the noble. Your offence is great; your crime is very heavy. Take yourself off home at once. If you do not do so, I will take your liver, and add it to the provision for to-day's food."'

But Confucius sent in another message, saying, I enjoy the good will of (your brother) Kî, and I wish and hope to tread the ground beneath your tent[1].' When the usher had communicated this message, Tâo Kih said, 'Make him come forward.' On this Confucius hastened forwards. Declining to take a mat, he drew hastily back, and bowed twice to Tâo Kih, who in a great rage stretched

[1. That is, I wish to have an interview with you, to see and speak to you face to face.]

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his legs apart, laid his hand on his sword, and with glaring eyes and a voice like the growl of a nursing tigress, said, 'Come forwards, Khiû. If what you say be in accordance with my mind, you shall live; but, if it be contrary to it, you shall die.' Confucius replied, 'I have heard that everywhere under the sky there are three (most excellent) qualities. To be naturally tall and large, to be elegant and handsome without a peer, so that young and old, noble and mean, are pleased to look upon him;--this is the highest of those qualities. To comprehend both heaven and earth in his wisdom, and to be able to speak eloquently on all subjects;--this is the middle one of them. To be brave and courageous, resolute and daring, gathering the multitudes round him, and leading on his troops;--this is the lowest of them. Whoever possesses one of these qualities is fit to stand with his face to the south[1], and style himself a Prince. But you, General, unite in yourself all the three. Your person is eight cubits and two inches in height; there is a brightness about your face and a light in your eyes; your lips look as if stained with vermilion; your teeth are like rows of precious shells; your voice is attuned to the musical tubes, and yet you are named "The Robber Kih." I am ashamed of you, General, and cannot approve of you. If you are inclined to listen to me, I should like to go as your commissioner to Wû and Yüeh in the south; to Khî and Lû in the north; to Sung and Wei in the east; and to Zin and Khû in the west. I will get them to build for you a great city several hundred lî in size, to

[1. To take the position of a ruler in his court.]

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establish under it towns containing several hundred thousands of inhabitants, and honour you there as a feudal lord. The kingdom will see you begin your career afresh; you will cease from your wars and disband your soldiers; you will collect and nourish your brethren, and along with them offer the sacrifices to your ancestors[1]:--this will be a course befitting a sage and an officer of ability, and will fulfil the wishes of the whole kingdom.'

'Come forward, Khiû,' said Tâo Kih, greatly enraged. 'Those who can be persuaded by considerations of gain, and to whom remonstrances may be addressed with success, are all ignorant, low, and ordinary people. That I am tall and large, elegant and handsome, so that all who see me are pleased with me;--this is an effect of the body left me by my parents. Though you were not to praise me for it, do I not know it myself? And I have heard that he who likes to praise men to their face will also like to speak ill of them behind their back. And when you tell me of a great wall and a multitudinous people, this is to try to persuade me by considerations of gain, and to cocker me as one of the ordinary people. But how could such advantages last for long? Of all great cities there is none so great as the whole kingdom, which was possessed by Yâo and Shun, while their descendants (now) have not so much territory as would admit an awl[2]. Thang and Wa were both set up as the Sons of Heaven, but in after ages (their posterity) were cut

[1. It is said near the beginning that Kih and his followers had ceased to offer such sacrifices;--they had no religion.

2. The descendants of those worthies were greatly reduced; but they still had a name and a place.]

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off and extinguished;--was not this because the gain of their position was so great a prize[1]?

'And moreover I have heard that anciently birds and beasts were numerous, and men were few, so that they lived in nests in order to avoid the animals. In the daytime they gathered acorns and chestnuts, and in the night they roosted on the trees; and on account of this they are called the people of the Nest-builder. Anciently the people did not know the use of clothes. In summer they collected great stores of faggots, and in winter kept themselves warm by means of them; and on account of this they are called the people who knew how to take care of their lives. In the age of Shän Näng, the people lay down in simple innocence, and rose up in quiet security. They knew their mothers, but did not know their fathers. They dwelt along with the elks and deer. They ploughed and ate; they wove and made clothes; they had no idea of injuring one another:--this was the grand time of Perfect virtue[2]. Hwang-Tî, however, was not able to perpetuate this virtuous state. He fought with Khih-yû[3] in the wild of Ko-lû[4] till the blood flowed over a hundred lî. When Yâo and Shun arose, they instituted their crowd of ministers. Thang banished his lord. King Wû killed Kâu. Since that time the strong have oppressed the weak, and the many tyrannised over the few. From Thang and Wû downwards, (the

[1. See note 2, p. 170.

2. Compare the description of this primeval time in Book X, par. 4.

3. Commonly spoken of as 'the first rebel.' See Mayers's Manual, p. 36.

4. Perhaps in the present Pâo-an Kâu, department of Hsüan-hwâ, Kih-lî.]

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rulers) have all been promoters of disorder and confusion. You yourself now cultivate and inculcate the ways of Wän and Wû; you handle whatever subjects are anywhere discussed for the instruction of future ages. With your peculiar robe and narrow girdle, with your deceitful speech and hypocritical conduct, you delude the lords of the different states, and are seeking for riches and honours. There is no greater robber than you are;--why does not all the world call you the Robber Khiû, instead of styling me the Robber Kih?

'You prevailed by your sweet speeches on Dze-lû, and made him your follower; you made him put away his high cap, lay aside his long sword, and receive your instructions, so that all the world said, "Khung Khiû is able to arrest violence and repress the wrong-doer;" but in the end, when Dze-lû wished to slay the ruler of Wei, and the affair proved unsuccessful, his body was exhibited in pickle over the eastern gate of the capital;--so did your teaching of him come to nothing.

'Do you call yourself a scholar of talent, a sage? Why, you were twice driven out of Lû; you had to run away from Wei; you were reduced to extremity in Khî; you were held in a state of siege between Khän and Zhâi; there is no resting-place for your person in the kingdom; your instructions brought Dze-lû to pickle. Such have been the misfortunes (attending your course). You have done no good either for yourself or for others;--how can your doctrines be worth being thought much of?

'There is no one whom the world exalts so much as it does Hwang-Tî, and still he was not able to perfect his virtue, but fought in the wilderness of

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Ko-lû, till the blood flowed over a hundred lî. Yâo was not kind to his son[1]. Shun was not filial[2]. Yü was paralysed on one side[3]. Thang banished his sovereign. King Wû smote Kâu. King Wän was imprisoned in Yû-lî[4]. These are the six men of whom the world thinks the most highly, yet when we accurately consider their history, we see that for the sake of gain they all disallowed their true (nature), and did violence to its proper qualities and tendencies:--their conduct cannot be thought of but with deep shame.

'Among those whom the world calls men of ability and virtue were (the brothers) Po-Î and Shû-khî. They declined the rule of Kû-kû, and died of starvation on the hill of Shâu-yang, leaving their bones and flesh unburied. Pâo Ziâo vaunted his conduct, and condemned the world, but he died with his arms round a tree[5]. When Shän-thû Tî's remonstrances were not listened to, he fastened a stone on his back, and threw himself into the Ho, where he was eaten by the fishes and turtles[6]. Kieh Dze-thui was the most devoted (of followers), and cut a piece from his thigh as food for duke Wän. But when the duke afterwards overlooked him (in

[1. Referring to his setting aside his unworthy son, Tan-kû, and giving the throne to Shun.

2. See in Mencius, V, i, 1. 3, 4.

3. This, I think, is the meaning; the fact was highly honourable to Yû, and brought on by his devotion to his labours.

4. In the present district of Thang-yin, department Khang-teh, Ho-nan. There king Wän pursued his labours on the Yî King.

5. A recluse of the time of Confucius, according to Han Ying (I, art. 27). After a dispute with Dze-kung, he committed suicide in the way described.

6. See art. 26, in the same Book of Han Ying.]

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his distribution of favours), he was angry, and went away, and was burned to death with a tree in his arms[1]. Wei Shäng had made an appointment with a girl to meet him under a bridge; but when she did not come, and the water rose around him, he would not go away, and died with his arms round one of the pillars[2]. (The deaths of) these four men were not different from those of the dog that is torn in pieces, the pig that is borne away by a current, or the beggar (drowned in a ditch) with his alms-gourd in his hand. They were all caught as in a net by their (desire for) fame, not caring to nourish their life to its end, as they were bound to do.

'Among those whom the world calls faithful ministers there have been none like the prince Pî-kan and Wû Dze-hsü. But Dze-hsü's (dead) body was cast into the Kiang, and the heart of Pî-kan was cut out. These two were what the world calls loyal ministers, but the end has been that everybody laughs at them. Looking at all the above cases, down to those of Dze-hsü and Pî-kan, there is not one worthy to be honoured; and as to the admonitions which you, Khiû, wish to impress on me, if you tell me about the state of the dead, I am unable to know anything about it; if you tell me about the things of men (alive), they are only such as I have stated, what I have heard and know all about. I will now tell you, Sir, my views about the condition of man. The eyes wish to look on beauty; the cars to hear music; the mouth to enjoy flavours; the will to be gratified. The greatest longevity man

[1. See Mayers's Manual, p. 80.

2. Supposed to be the same with the Wei-shäng Kâo, mentioned in Analects, V, 23;--see Mayers's Manual, p. 251.]

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can reach is a hundred years; a medium longevity is eighty years; the lowest longevity is sixty. Take away sickness, pining, bereavement, mourning, anxieties, and calamities, the times when, in any of these, one can open his mouth and laugh, are only four or five days in a month. Heaven and earth have no limit of duration, but the death of man has its (appointed) time. Take the longest amount of a limited time, and compare it with what is unlimited, its brief existence is not different from the passing of a crevice by one of king Mû's horses[1]. Those who cannot gratify their will and natural aims, and nourish their appointed longevity, are all unacquainted with the (right) Way (of life). I cast from me, Khiû, all that you say. Be quick and go. Hurry back and say not a word more. Your Way is only a wild recklessness, deceitful, artful, vain, and hypocritical. It is not available to complete the true (nature of man); it is not worth talking about!'

Confucius bowed twice, and hurried away. He went out at the door, and mounted his carriage. Thrice he missed the reins as he tried to take hold of them. His eyes were dazed, and he could not see; and his colour was that of slaked lime. He laid hold of the cross-bar, holding his head down, and unable to draw his breath. When he got back, outside the east gate of (the capital of) Lû, he encountered Liû-hsiâ Kî, who said to him, 'Here you are, right in the gate. For some days I have not seen you. Your carriage and horses are travel-stained;--have you not been to see Tâo Kih?' Confucius

[1. King Mû had eight famous horses, each having its own name. The name of only one--Khih-ki--is given here. See Bk. XVII, par. 5.]

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looked up to heaven, sighed, and said, 'Yes.' The other went on, 'And did he not set himself in opposition to all your views, as I said he would do?' 'He did. My case has been that of the man who cauterised himself without being ill. I rushed away, stroked the tiger's head, played with his whiskers, and narrowly escaped his mouth.'

2. Dze-kang[1] asked Mân Kâu-the[2], saying, 'Why do you not pursue a (righteous) course? Without such a course you will not be believed in; unless you are believed in, you will not be employed in office; and if not employed in office, you will not acquire gain. Thus, if you look at the matter from the point of reputation, or estimate it from the point of gain, a righteous course is truly the right thing. If you discard the thought of reputation and gain, yet when you think over the thing in your own mind, you will see that the scholar should not be a single day without pursuing a (righteous) course.' Man Kau-teh said, 'He who has no shame becomes rich, and he in whom many believe becomes illustrious. Thus the greatest fame and gain would seem to spring from being without shame and being believed in. Therefore if you look at the matter from the point of reputation, or estimate it from the point of gain, to be believed in is the right thing. If you discard the thought of fame and gain, and think over the thing in your own mind, you will see that the scholar in the course which he pursues is (simply) holding fast his Heavenly (nature, and gaining nothing).'

[1. We are told (Analects, II, 18) that Dze-kang 'studied with a view to official emolument.' This is, probably, the reason why he appears as interlocutor in this paragraph.

2. A fictitious name, meaning, 'Full of gain recklessly got.']

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Dze-kang said, 'Formerly Kieh and Kâu each enjoyed the honour of being the sovereign, and all the wealth of the kingdom was his; but if you now say to a (mere) money-grabber, "Your conduct is like that of Kieh or Kâu," he will look ashamed, and resent the imputation:--(these two sovereigns) are despised by the smallest men. Kung-nî and Mo Tî (on the other hand) were poor, and common men; but if you say to a Prime Minister that his conduct is like that of Kung-nî or Mo Tî, then he will be put out and change countenance, and protest that he is not worthy (to be so spoken of):--(these two philosophers) are held to be truly noble by (all) scholars. Thus it is that the position of sovereign does not necessarily connect with being thought noble, nor the condition of being poor and of common rank with being thought mean. The difference of being thought noble or mean arises from the conduct being good or bad.' Mân Kâu-teh replied, 'Small robbers are put in prison; a great robber becomes a feudal lord; and in the gate of the feudal lord your righteous scholars will be found. For instance, Hsiâo-po[1], the duke Hwan, killed his elder brother, and took his sister-in-law to himself, and yet Kwan Kung became his minister; and Thien Khang, styled Khäng-dze, killed his ruler, and usurped the state[2], and yet Confucius received a present of silks from him. In their discussions they would condemn the men, but

[1. The name of duke Hwan.

2. Compare the account of the same transaction in Book X, par. 1. See also Analects, XIV, 22. But there is no evidence but rather the contrary, that Confucius ever received a gift from Thien or Khän Häng.]

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in their conduct they abased themselves before them. In this way their words and actions must have been at war together in their breasts;--was it not a contradiction and perversity? As it is said in a book, "Who is bad? and who is good? The successful is regarded as the Head, and the unsuccessful as the Tail."

Dze-kang said, 'If you do not follow the usual course of what is held to be right, but observe no distinction between the near and remote degrees of kin, no difference between the noble and the mean, no order between the old and the young, then how shall a separation be made of the fivefold arrangement (of the virtues), and the six parties (in the social organisation)?' Mân Kâu-teh replied, 'Yâo killed his eldest son, and Shun banished his half-brother[1]:--did they observe the rules about the different degrees of kin? Thang deposed Kieh; king Wa overthrew Kâu:--did they observe the righteousness that should obtain between the noble and the mean? King Kî took the place of his elder brother[2], and the duke of Kâu killed his[3]:--did they observe the order that should obtain between the elder and the younger? The Literati make hypocritical speeches; the followers of Mo hold that all should be loved equally:--do we find in them the separation of the fivefold arrangement (of the

[1. Exaggerations or misrepresentations.

2. King Kî was the so-called king Kî-lî, the father of king Wän. His elder brother, that the state of Kâu might descend to him, left it, and withdrew south to what was then the wild region of Wû. See Analects, VIII, i; the Shih King, III, i, Ode 7. 3, 4.

3. Who had joined with Wû-käng, son of the tyrant of Yin, in rebellion, thus threatening the stability of the new dynasty of Kâu.]

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virtues)[1], and the six parties (in the social organisation)[2]? And further, you, Sir, are all for reputation, and I am all for gain; but where the actual search for reputation and gain may not be in accordance with principle and will not bear to be examined in the light of the right way, let me and you refer the matter to-morrow[3] to the decision of Wû-yo[4].'

(This Wû-yo) said, 'The small man pursues after wealth; the superior man pursues after reputation. The way in which they change their feelings and alter their nature is different; but if they were to cast away what they do, and replace it with doing nothing, they would be the same. Hence it is said, "Do not be a small man;--return and pursue after the Heavenly in you. Do not be a superior man;--follow the rule of the Heavenly in you. Be it crooked, be it straight, view the thing in the light of Heaven as revealed in you. Look all round on every side of it, and as the time indicates, cease your endeavours. Be it right, be it wrong, hold fast the ring in yourself in which all conditions converge. Alone by yourself, carry out your idea; ponder over the right way. Do not turn your course; do not try to complete your righteousness. You will fail in what you do. Do not haste to be rich; do not follow after your perfection. If you do, you will lose the heavenly in you."

[1. Probably what are called 'the five constant virtues.'

2. The parties in the 'Three Bonds of Society,' or Three Cardinal Objects of Duty.

3. So Lû Shû-kih (### = ###).

4. If we take Wû-yo as a name, which is the simplest construction, we must still recognise its meaning as denoting 'one who is unbound by the conventionalities of opinion.' Much of what he is made to say is in rhyme, and might also be so translated.]

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'Pî-kan had his heart cut out; Dze-hsü had his eyes gouged out:--such were the evil consequences of their loyalty. The upright person[1] bore witness against his father; Wei Shäng was drowned:--such were the misfortunes of good faith. Pao-dze stood till he was dried up; Shän-dze would not defend himself[2]:--such were the injuries brought on by disinterestedness. Confucius did not see his mother[3]; Khwang-dze[4] did not see his father:--such were the failures of the righteous. These are instances handed down from former ages, and talked about in these later times. They show us how superior men, in their determination to be correct in their words and resolute in their conduct, paid the penalty of these misfortunes, and were involved in these distresses.'

3. Mr. Dissatisfied[5], asked Mr. Know-the-Mean[5], saying, 'There is no man after all who does not strive for reputation and pursue after gain. When men are rich, then others go to them. Going to them, they put themselves beneath them. In that position they do honour to them as nobler than themselves. But to

[1. See the Analects, XIII, 18.

2. The reading of the name here is not certain. The best identification perhaps is with Shan Shäng (###), the eldest son of duke Hsien of Zin, who was put to death on a false charge of having put poison into his father's food, from which he would not defend himself.

3. A false charge.

4. The Khwang Kang of Mencius, IV, ii, 30, q.v.

5. Both of these names are fictitious. About the meaning of the first, there can be no difference of opinion. I have given that of the second according to my understanding of it,--see in the Lî Kî, Book XXVIII, section I.]

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see others taking that position and doing honour to us is the way to prolong life, and to secure the rest of the body and the satisfaction of the mind. You alone, Sir, however, have no idea of this. Is it that your knowledge is deficient? Is it that you have the knowledge, but want the strength to carry it into practice? Or is it that your mind is made up to do what you consider right, and never allow yourself to forget it?' Know-the-Mean replied, 'Here now is this man judging of us, his contemporaries, and living in the same neighbourhood as himself, that we consider ourselves scholars who have abjured all vulgar ways and risen above the world. He is entirely without the thought of submitting to the rule of what is right. He therefore studies ancient times and the present, and the differing questions about the right and wrong, and agrees with the vulgar ideas and influences of the age, abandoning what is most important and discarding what is most honourable, in order to be free to act as he does. But is he not wide of the mark when he thinks that this is the way to promote long life, and to secure the rest of the body and the satisfaction of the mind? He has his painful afflictions and his quiet repose, but he does not inquire how his body is so variously affected; he has his apprehensive terrors, and his happy joys, but he does not inquire how his mind has such different experiences. He knows how to pursue his course, but he does not know why he does so. Even if he had the dignity of the Son of Heaven, and all the wealth of the kingdom were his, he would not be beyond the reach of misfortunes and evils.' Dissatisfied rejoined, 'But riches are in every way advantageous to man.

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With them his attainment of the beautiful and mastery of every art become what the perfect man cannot obtain nor the sagely man reach to; his appropriation of the bravery and strength of others enables him to exercise a powerful sway; his availing himself of the wisdom and plans of others makes him be accounted intelligent and discriminating; his taking advantage of the virtues of others makes him be esteemed able and good. Though he may not be the holder of a state, he is looked to with awe as a ruler and father. Moreover, music, beauty, with the pleasures of the taste and of power, are appreciated by men's minds and rejoiced in without any previous learning of them; the body reposes in them without waiting for the example of others. Desire and dislike, avoidance and pursuit, do not require any master;--this is the nature of man. Though the world may condemn one's indulgence of them, who can refrain from it?' Know-the-Mean replied, 'The action of the wise is directed for the good of the people, but they do not go against the (proper) rule and degree. Therefore when they have enough, they do not strive (for more); they have no further object, and so they do not seek for one. When they have not enough, they will seek for it; they will strive for it in every quarter, and yet not think of themselves as greedy. If they have (already) a superfluity, they will decline (any more); they will decline the throne, and yet not think of themselves as disinterested:--the conditions of disinterestedness and greediness are (with them) not from the constraint of anything external. Through their exercise of introspection, their power may be that of the sovereign, but they will not in

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their nobility be arrogant to others; their wealth may be that of the whole kingdom, but they will not in their possession of it make a mock of others. They estimate the evils to which they are exposed, and are anxious about the reverses which they may experience. They think how their possessions may be injurious to their nature, and therefore they will decline and not accept them;--but not because they seek for reputation and praise.

'Yâo and Shun were the sovereigns, and harmony prevailed. It did so, not because of their benevolence towards the people;--they would not, for what was (deemed) admirable, injure their lives. Shan Küan and Hsü Yû might have been the sovereigns, but they would not receive the throne;--not that they declined it without purpose, but they would not by its occupancy injure themselves. These all followed after what was advantageous to them, and declined what was injurious, and all the world celebrates their superiority. Thus, though they enjoy the distinction, they did what they did, not for the sake of the reputation and praise.'

Dissatisfied (continued his argument), saying, 'In thus thinking it necessary for their reputation, they bitterly distressed their bodies, denied themselves what was pleasant, and restricted themselves to a bare sustenance in order to sustain their life; but so they had life-long distress, and long-continued pressure till their death arrived.' Know-the-Mean replied, 'Tranquil ease is happiness; a superfluity is injurious:--so it is with all things, and especially it is so, where the superfluity is of wealth. The ears of the rich are provided with the music of bells, drums, flageolets and flutes; and their mouths are

{p. 184}

stuffed with the flesh of fed beasts and with wine of the richest flavour; so are their desires satisfied, till they forget their proper business:--theirs may be pronounced a condition of disorder. Sunk deeply in their self-sufficiency, they resemble individuals ascending a height with a heavy burden on their backs:--their condition may be pronounced one of bitter suffering. They covet riches, thinking to derive comfort from them; they covet power, and would fain monopolise it; when quiet and retired, they are drowned in luxurious indulgence; their persons seem to shine, and they are full of boasting:--they may be said to be in a state of disease. In their desire to be rich and striving for gain, they fill their stores, and, deaf to all admonition, refuse to desist from their course. They are even more elated, and hold on their way:--their conduct may be pronounced disgraceful. When their wealth is amassed till they cannot use it, they clasp it to their breasts and will not part with it; when their hearts are distressed with their very fulness, they still seek for more and will not desist:--their condition may be said to be sad. In-doors they are apprehensive of pilfering and begging thieves, and out-of-doors they are afraid of being injured by plundering robbers; in-doors they have many chambers and partitions, and out-of-doors they do not dare to go alone:--they may be said to be in a state of (constant) alarm.

'These six conditions are the most deplorable in the world, but they forget them all, and have lost their faculty of judgment. When the evil comes, though they begged it with all the powers of their nature, and by the sacrifice of all their wealth, they could

{p. 185}

not bring back one day of untroubled peace. When they look for their reputation, it is not to be seen; when they seek for their wealth, it is not to be got. To task their thoughts, and destroy their bodies, striving for (such an end as) this;--is it not a case of great delusion?'

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continues »