The Library

The Analects of Confucius


The Viscount of Wei withdrew from the court. The Viscount of Chi
became a slave to Chau. Pi-kan remonstrated with him and died.
Confucius said, "The Yin dynasty possessed these three men of
Hui of Liu-hsia, being chief criminal judge, was thrice dismissed
from his office. Some one said to him, "Is it not yet time for you,
sir, to leave this?" He replied, "Serving men in an upright way, where
shall I go to, and not experience such a thrice-repeated dismissal? If
I choose to serve men in a crooked way, what necessity is there for me
to leave the country of my parents?"
The duke Ching of Ch'i, with reference to the manner in which he
should treat Confucius, said, "I cannot treat him as I would the chief
of the Chi family. I will treat him in a manner between that
accorded to the chief of the Chil and that given to the chief of the
Mang family." He also said, "I am old; I cannot use his doctrines."
Confucius took his departure.
The people of Ch'i sent to Lu a present of female musicians, which
Chi Hwan received, and for three days no court was held. Confucius
took his departure.
The madman of Ch'u, Chieh-yu, passed by Confucius, singing and
saying, "O FANG! O FANG! How is your virtue degenerated! As to the
past, reproof is useless; but the future may still be provided
against. Give up your vain pursuit. Give up your vain pursuit. Peril
awaits those who now engage in affairs of government."
Confucius alighted and wished to converse with him, but Chieh-yu
hastened away, so that he could not talk with him.
Ch'ang-tsu and Chieh-ni were at work in the field together, when
Confucius passed by them, and sent Tsze-lu to inquire for the ford.
Ch'ang-tsu said, "Who is he that holds the reins in the carriage
there?" Tsze-lu told him, "It is K'ung Ch'iu.', "Is it not K'ung of
Lu?" asked he. "Yes," was the reply, to which the other rejoined,
"He knows the ford."
Tsze-lu then inquired of Chieh-ni, who said to him, "Who are you,
sir?" He answered, "I am Chung Yu." "Are you not the disciple of K'ung
Ch'iu of Lu?" asked the other. "I am," replied he, and then Chieh-ni
said to him, "Disorder, like a swelling flood, spreads over the
whole empire, and who is he that will change its state for you? Rather
than follow one who merely withdraws from this one and that one, had
you not better follow those who have withdrawn from the world
altogether?" With this he fell to covering up the seed, and
proceeded with his work, without stopping.
Tsze-lu went and reported their remarks, when the Master observed
with a sigh, "It is impossible to associate with birds and beasts,
as if they were the same with us. If I associate not with these
people,-with mankind,-with whom shall I associate? If right principles
prevailed through the empire, there would be no use for me to change
its state."
Tsze-lu, following the Master, happened to fall behind, when he
met an old man, carrying across his shoulder on a staff a basket for
weeds. Tsze-lu said to him, "Have you seen my master, sir?" The old
man replied, "Your four limbs are unaccustomed to toil; you cannot
distinguish the five kinds of grain:-who is your master?" With this,
he planted his staff in the ground, and proceeded to weed.
Tsze-lu joined his hands across his breast, and stood before him.
The old man kept Tsze-lu to pass the night in his house, killed a
fowl, prepared millet, and feasted him. He also introduced to him
his two sons.
Next day, Tsze-lu went on his way, and reported his adventure. The
Master said, "He is a recluse," and sent Tsze-lu back to see him
again, but when he got to the place, the old man was gone.
Tsze-lu then said to the family, "Not to take office is not
righteous. If the relations between old and young may not be
neglected, how is it that he sets aside the duties that should be
observed between sovereign and minister? Wishing to maintain his
personal purity, he allows that great relation to come to confusion. A
superior man takes office, and performs the righteous duties belonging
to it. As to the failure of right principles to make progress, he is
aware of that."
The men who have retired to privacy from the world have been Po-i,
Shu-ch'i, Yuchung, I-yi, Chu-chang, Hui of Liu-hsia, and Shao-lien.
The Master said, "Refusing to surrender their wills, or to submit to
any taint in their persons; such, I think, were Po-i and Shu-ch'i.
"It may be said of Hui of Liu-hsia! and of Shaolien, that they
surrendered their wills, and submitted to taint in their persons,
but their words corresponded with reason, and their actions were
such as men are anxious to see. This is all that is to be remarked
in them.
"It may be said of Yu-chung and I-yi, that, while they hid
themselves in their seclusion, they gave a license to their words; but
in their persons, they succeeded in preserving their purity, and, in
their retirement, they acted according to the exigency of the times.
"I am different from all these. I have no course for which I am
predetermined, and no course against which I am predetermined."
The grand music master, Chih, went to Ch'i.
Kan, the master of the band at the second meal, went to Ch'u.
Liao, the band master at the third meal, went to Ts'ai. Chueh, the
band master at the fourth meal, went to Ch'in.
Fang-shu, the drum master, withdrew to the north of the river.
Wu, the master of the hand drum, withdrew to the Han.
Yang, the assistant music master, and Hsiang, master of the
musical stone, withdrew to an island in the sea.
The duke of Chau addressed his son, the duke of Lu, saying, "The
virtuous prince does not neglect his relations. He does not cause
the great ministers to repine at his not employing them. Without
some great cause, he does not dismiss from their offices the members
of old families. He does not seek in one man talents for every
To Chau belonged the eight officers, Po-ta, Po-kwo, Chung-tu,
Chung-hwu, Shu-ya, Shuhsia, Chi-sui, and Chi-kwa.