THE DOCTRINE OF THE MEAN

                   

THE DOCTRINE OF THE MEAN

 

原 文:

 

第一章

天命之谓性,率性之谓道,脩道之谓教。道也者,不可须臾离也。可离,非道也。是故,君子戒慎乎其所不睹,恐惧乎其所不闻。莫见乎隐,莫显乎微,故君子慎其独也。

喜怒哀乐之未发,谓之中 发而皆中节,谓之和。中也者,天下之大本也;和也者,天下之达道也。致中和,天地位焉,万物育焉。

 

第二章

仲尼曰:君子中庸,小人反中庸。君子之中庸也,君子而时中; 小人之反中庸也, 小人而无忌惮也。〕

 

第三章

子曰:〔中庸其至矣乎!民鲜能久矣!〕

 

第四章

子曰:〔道之不行也,我知之矣 :知者过之,愚者不及也。道之不明也,我知之矣:贤者过之,不肖者不及也。人莫不饮食也,鲜能知味也。〕

 

第五章

子曰:〔道其不行矣夫!〕

 

 子曰:〔舜其大知也与!舜好问而好察迩言,隐恶而扬善,执其两端,用其中于民,其斯以为舜乎!〕

 

第七章

 子曰:〔人皆曰‘予知’;驱而纳诸罟,护陷阱之中而莫之知辟也。人皆曰‘予知’;择乎中庸而不能期月守也。〕

 

第八章

子曰:〔回之为人也,择乎中庸,得一善,则拳拳服膺而弗失之矣。〕

 

第九章

子曰:〔天下国家可均也,爵禄可辞也,白刃可蹈也,中庸不可能也。〕

 

第十章

子路问〔强〕。子曰:〔南方之强与?北方之强与?抑而强与?宽柔以教,不报无道,南方之强也。君子居之。衽金革,死而不厌,北方之强也。而强者居之。故君子和而不流,强哉矫!中立而不倚,强哉矫!国有道,不变塞焉,强哉矫!国无道,至死不变,强哉矫!〕

 

第十一章

子曰:〔素隐行怪,后世有述焉,吾弗为之矣。君子遵道而行,半途而癈,吾弗能已矣。君子依乎中庸,遯世不见知而不悔,唯圣者能之。〕

 

第十二章

君子之道,费而隐。夫妇之愚,可以与知焉;及其至也,虽圣人亦有所不知焉。夫妇之不肖,可以能行焉;及其至也,虽圣人亦有所不能焉。天地之大也,人犹有所憾。故君子语大,天下莫能载焉;语小,天下莫能破焉。诗云:〔鸢飞戾天,鱼跃于渊。〕言其上下察也。君子之道,造端乎夫妇,及其至也,察乎天地。

 

第十三章

子曰:〔道不远人,人之为道而远人,不可以为道。诗云 :‘伐柯,伐柯,其则不远。’执柯以伐柯,睨而视之,犹以为远。故君子以人治人,改而止。忠如违道不远,施诸己而不愿,亦勿施于人。君子之道四,丘未能一焉。所求乎子以事父,未能也; 所求乎臣以事君,未能也;所求乎弟以事兄,未能也;所求乎朋友先施之,未能也。庸德之行,庸言之谨;有所不足,不敢不勉;有余不敢尽。言顾行,行顾言,君子胡不慥慥尔!〕

 

第十四章

君子素其位而行,不愿乎其外。素富贵,行乎富贵;素贫贱,行乎贫贱;素夷狄,行乎夷狄;素患难,行乎患难。君子无入而不自得焉!

在上位不陵下;在下位不援上,正己而不求于人,则无怨;上不怨天,下不尤人,故君子居易以俟命, 小人行险以徼幸。子曰 :〔射有似乎君子,失诸正鹄,反求诸其身。〕

 

第十五章

君子之道,辟如行远必自迩,辟如登高必自卑。诗曰:〔妻子好合,如鼓瑟琴; 兄弟既翕,和乐且耽;宜尔室家,乐尔妻帑。〕子曰:〔父母其顺矣乎!〕。

 

第十六章

子曰:〔鬼神之为德,其盛矣乎!视之而弗见,听之而弗闻,体物而不可遗。使天下之人,齐明盛服,以承祭祀,洋洋乎如其上,如在其左右。诗曰:‘神之格思,不可度思,矧可射思。’夫微之显,诚之不可掩如此夫!〕

 

第十七章

子曰:〔舜其大孝也与!德为圣人,尊为天子,富有四海之内;宗庙飨之,子孙保之。故大德,必得其位,必得其禄,必得其名,必得其寿。故天之生物,必因其材而笃焉,故栽者培之,倾者覆之。诗曰:‘嘉乐君子,宪宪令德,宜民宜人, 受禄于天;保佑命之,自天申之’,故大德者必受命。〕

 

第十八章

子曰:〔无忧者,其惟文王乎!以王季为父,以武王为子;父作之,子述之。武王缵大王、王季、文王之绪,壹戎衣而有天下,身不失天下之显名;尊为天子,富有四海之内;宗庙飨之 子孙保之。武王末受命,周公成文武之德,追王大王、王季,上祀先公以天子之礼。斯礼也,达乎诸侯、大夫及士、庶人。父为大夫,子为士;葬以大,夫,祭以士。父为士,子为大夫,葬以士,祭以大夫。期之丧,达乎大夫;三年之丧,达乎天子;父母之丧, 无贵贱一也。〕

 

第十九章

子曰:〔武王、周公其达孝矣乎!夫孝者善继人之志,善述人之事者也。春秋,修其祖庙,陈其宗器,设其裳衣,荐其时食。

宗庙之礼,所以序昭穆也;序爵,所以辨贵贱也;序事,所以辨贤也;旅酬下为上,所以逮贱也;燕毛,所以序齿也。

践其位,行其礼,奏其乐;敬其所尊,爱其所亲;事死如事生,事亡如事存,孝之至也。

郊社之礼,所以事上帝也;宗庙之礼,所以祀乎其先也。明乎郊社之礼,禘尝之义,治国其如示诸掌乎!〕

 

第二十章

哀公问政。子曰:〔文、武之政, 布在方策。其人存,则其政举;其人亡,则其政息。人道敏政,地道敏树。夫政也者,蒲卢也。故为政在人;取人以身,修身以道,修道以仁。仁者,人也,亲亲为大;义者,宜也,尊贤为大。亲亲之杀,尊贤之等,礼所生也。故君子不可以不修身;思修身,不可以不事亲;思事亲,不可以不知人;思知人,不可以不知天。

天下之达道五,所以行之者三。曰:君臣也,父子也,夫妇也,昆弟也,朋友之交也,五者,天下之达道也;知、仁、勇,三者,天下之达德也;所以行之者, 一也。或生而知之, 或学而知之,或困而知之,及其知之, 一也。或安而行之,或利而行之,或勉强而行之,及其成功, 一也〕。

子曰:〔好学近乎知,力行近乎仁,知耻近乎勇。知斯三者,则知所以修身;知所以修身,则知所以治人;知所以治人,则知所以治天下国家矣。

凡为天下国家有九经曰:修身也,尊贤也,亲亲也,敬大臣也,体群臣也,子庶民也,来百工也,柔远人也,怀诸侯也。修身,则道立;尊贤,则不惑;亲亲,则诸父昆弟不怨;敬大臣,则不眩;体群臣,则士之报礼重;子庶民,则百姓劝;来百工,则财用足;柔远人,则四方归之;怀诸侯,则天下畏之。

斋明盛服,非礼不动,所以修身也;去谗远色,贱货而贵德,所以劝贤也;尊其位,重其禄,同其好恶,所以劝亲亲也;官盛任使,所以劝大臣也;忠信重禄, 所以劝士也;时使薄敛,所以劝百姓也;日省月试,禀称事,所以劝百工也; 送往迎来,嘉善而矜不能,所以柔远人也;继绝世,废国,治乱持危,朝聘以时,厚往而薄来,所以怀诸侯也。凡为天下国家有九经,所以行之者,一也。

凡事豫则立,不豫则废;言前定则不跲,事前定,则不困;行前定,则不疚;道前定,则不穷。

在下位,不获乎上,民不可得而治矣;获乎上有道,不信乎朋友,不获乎上矣; 信乎朋友有道,不顺乎亲,不信乎朋友矣;顺乎亲有道,反诸身不诚,不顺乎亲矣;诚身有道,不明乎善,不诚乎身矣。

诚者,天之道也;诚之者,人之道也。诚者,不勉而中,不思而得,从容中道, 圣人也;诚之者,择善而固执之者也。

博学之,审问之,慎思之,明辨之,笃行之。有弗学,学之弗能弗措也;有弗问, 问之弗知佛措也;有弗思,思之弗得弗措也;有弗辨,辨之弗明弗措也;有弗行, 行之弗笃弗措也。人一能之,己百之;人十能之,己千之。果能此道矣,虽愚必明,虽柔必强。〕

 

第二十一章

自诚明,谓之性;自明诚,谓之教。诚则明矣,明则诚矣。

 

第二十二章

唯天下至诚,为能尽其性;能尽其性,则能尽人之性;能尽人之性,则能尽物之性;能尽物之性,则可以赞天地之化育;可以赞天地之化育,则可以与天地参矣。

 

第二十三章

其次致曲,曲能有诚;诚则形,形则着,着则明,明则动,动则变,变则化;唯天下至诚为能化。

 

第二十四章

至诚之道,可以前知 :国家将兴,必有祯祥;国家将亡,必有妖孽;见乎蓍龟, 动乎四体;祸福将至,善,必先知之,不善,必先知之;故至诚如神。

 

第二十五章

诚者,自成也;而道,自道也。诚者,物之终始 :不诚,无物。是故,君子诚之为贵。诚者,非自成己而已也,所以成物也。成己,仁也;成物,知也;性之德也,合外内之道也,故时措之宜也。

 

第二十六章

故至诚无息;不息则久。久则征, 征则悠远,悠远则博厚,博厚则高明。博厚所以载物也,高明所以覆物也,悠久所以成物也。博厚配地,高明配天,悠久无疆。如此者,不见而章,不动而变, 无为而成。

天地之道,可一言而尽也:〔其为物不贰,则其生物不测。〕天地之道 :博也, 厚也,高也,明也,悠也,久也。今夫天,斯昭昭之多,及其无穷也,日月星辰系焉,物覆焉。今天地, 一撮土之多;及其广厚,载华岳而不重,振河海而不泄,万物载焉。今夫山, 一卷石之多,及其广大,草木生之,禽兽居之,宝藏兴焉。今夫水,一勺之多,及其不测,鼋鼍蛟龙鱼鳖生焉,货财殖焉。

诗云:〔维天之命, 于穆不已。〕盖曰天之所以为天也。〔于乎不显,文王之德之纯。〕盖曰文王之所以为文也,纯亦不已。

 

第二十七章

大哉!圣人之道!洋洋乎,发育万物,峻极于天。优优大哉!礼仪三百,威仪三千,待其人而后行。故曰:〔苟不至德,至道不凝焉〕。故君子尊德性而道问学,致广大而尽精微,极高明而道中庸。温故而知新,敦厚以崇礼。是故,居上不骄,为下不倍。国有道,其言足以兴;国无道,其默足以容。诗曰 :〔明且哲,以保其身〕,其此之谓与!

 

第二十八章

子曰:〔愚而好自用;贱而好自专;生乎今之世,反古之道;如此者,及其身者也。〕

非天子不议礼,不制度,不考文。今天下,车同轨,书同文,行同伦。虽有其位,苟无其德,不敢作礼乐焉; 虽有其德,苟无其位,亦不敢作礼乐焉。

子曰:〔吾说夏礼,杞不足征也;吾学殷礼,有宋存焉;吾学周礼,今用之,吾从周。〕

 

第二十九章

王天下有三重焉,其寡过矣乎!上焉者,虽善无征,无征不信,不信民弗从。下焉者,虽善不尊,不尊不信,不信民弗从。故君子之道,本诸身,征诸庶民,考诸三王而不缪,建诸天地而不悖,质诸鬼神而无疑,百世以俟圣人而不惑。质诸鬼神而无疑,知天也;百世以俟圣人而不惑, 知人也。是故,君子动而世为天下道, 行而世为天下法,言而世为天下则;远之则有望,近之则不厌。诗曰:〔在彼无恶, 在此无射;庶几夙夜,以永终誉〕。君子未有不如此,而蚤有誉于天下者也。

 

第三十章

仲尼祖述尧舜,宪章文武;上律天时,下袭水土。辟如天地之无不载,无不覆帱;辟如四时之错行,如日月之代明。万物并育而不相害,道并行而不相悖。小德川流,大德敦化。此天地之所以为大也。

 

第三十一章

唯天下至圣,为能聪明睿知。足以有临也; 裕温柔,足以有容也;发强刚毅, 足以有执也;斋庄中正,足有敬也;文理密察,足以有别也。溥博渊泉,而时出之。溥博如天,渊泉如渊。见而民莫不敬,言而民莫不信,行而民莫不说。是以声名洋溢乎中国,施及蛮貊,舟车所至,人力所通,天之所覆,地之所载,日月所照,霜露所队,凡有血气者,莫不尊亲,故曰配天。

 

第三十二章

唯天下至诚,为能经纶天下之大经,立天下之大本,知天地之化育。夫焉有所倚?肫肫其仁,渊渊其渊,浩浩其天。苟不固聪明圣知达天德者,其孰能知之?

 

第三十三章

诗曰:〔衣锦尚絅, 〕恶其文之着也。故君子之道,闇然而日章;小人之道,的然而日亡。君子之道,淡而不厌,简而文,温而理;知远之近,知风之自,知微之显,可与入德矣。

诗云:〔潜虽伏矣;亦孔之昭。〕故君子内省不疚,无恶于志。君子之所不可及者,其唯人之所不见乎!

诗云:〔相在尔室,尚不愧于屋漏。〕故君子不动而敬,不言而信。

诗曰:〔奏假无言,时靡有争。〕故君子不赏而民劝,不怒而民威于鈇钺。

诗曰:〔不显惟德,百辟其刑之。〕故君子笃恭而天下平。

诗云:〔予怀明德,不大声以色。〕子曰 :〔声色之于以化民,末也。〕诗曰:〔德輶如毛。〕毛犹有伦。〔上天之载,无声无臭。〕至矣。

 

 

第一章  

天命之谓性,  率性之谓道,  脩道之谓教。

 

今译 

上天赋予人们的质性叫做〔性〕,遵循本性而行动的准则叫做〔道〕,使道臻于修明叫做〔教〕。

 

道也者,不可须臾离也。可离,非道也。是故,君子戒慎乎其所不睹,恐惧乎其所不闻。莫见乎隐,莫显乎微,故君子慎其独也。

 

今译

道是一时一刻不能离开的,如果可以离开,那就不成其为道了。因此,有良好品德修养的人,在不会被人看见的时候也总是警惕谨慎的,在不能被人听到的地方也总是惶恐小心的。在隐蔽的情况也不要表现出不好的行为,在细小的事情上也不要暴露出不良的思想。所以,品德良好的人在单独居处的时候更要谨慎小心。

 

喜怒哀乐之未发,谓之中;发而皆中节,谓之和。中也者,天下之大本也;和也者,天下之达道也。致中和,天地位焉,万物育焉。

 

今译

喜怒哀乐这些情感在还没有迸发出来的时候,这种状态叫做〔中〕;这些情感迸发出来而能够完全符合法度,这种情况叫做〔和〕。中,是天下万事万物的根本;和,是天下普遍通行法则,能够做到〔中和〕,那天地就会按正常秩序运行, 万物就能生长发育。

 

(1)   What is endowed by Heaven is called the nature; to follow that nature is called they way; to cultivate the way is called culture.

 

One cannot depart from his way for an instant, what can be departed is not a way.  A man of moral integrity is always discreet and vigilant when he is beyond others’ sight, apprehensive and cautious when beyond others’ hearing.  One should never misbehave even when he is in privacy, nor should he reveal evil intentions even in trivial matters.  So a moral person remains circumspect especially when he is alone.

 

Feelings like joy, anger, sorrow and happiness are in the state of the mean when they are kept in heart; they are in the state of harmony when expressed in conformity with moral standards.  The mean is the fundament of everything under heaven, and harmony the universal law.  With the mean and harmony, the earth moves orderly, and everything thereon grows and flourishes.

 

 

第二章                

 

仲尼曰 :〔君子中庸,  小人反中庸。君子之中庸也, 君子而时中   小人之中庸也, (注:朱熹《四书章句集注》说 :〔‘王肃本作’小人之反中庸也,  程子亦以为然,  译文从之。) 小人而无忌惮也。〕

 

今译

仲尼说 :〔品德高尚者的言行符合中庸原则, 品德低下者的言行违背中庸原则。品德高尚者的言行符合中庸原则, 因为他们是品德高尚的君子, 做事时时符合法度; 品德低下者的言行违背中庸原则, 因为他们是品德低下的小人, 做事总是肆无忌惮。〕

 

(2)   Said Confucius: “A man of noble character speaks and conducts himself according to the doctrine of the mean, white a man of vile character speaks and conducts himself in violation of that doctrine.  The man of noble character observes the doctrine of the mean, as his high morality enables him to act in conformity with moral standards at all times; the man of vile character goes against that doctrine, as his degenerating morality causes him careless of all the rules of proprieties.”

 

 

第三章      

子曰 :〔中庸其至矣乎!民鲜能久矣!〕

 

今译

孔子说 :〔中庸之道真是至善至美啊!可惜长期以来一般老百姓却很少能够做得到!〕

 

(3)   Said Confucius; “The doctrine of the mean is the acme of perfection! The pity is that it has long been seldom in the practice of the public.”

 

第四章      

子曰 :〔道之不行也, 我知之矣 :知者过之, 愚者不及也; 道之不明也, 我知之矣:贤者过之, 不肖者不及也。人莫不饮食也, 鲜能知味也。〕

 

今译

孔子说 :〔中庸之道所以不能实行, 其原因我已经知道了, 这就是聪明的人超越了中庸的标准, 而愚昧的人又达不到中庸的标准。中庸之道所以不能昭著, 其原因我已经知道了, 这就是贤明的人超越了中庸的标准, 而不贤明的人又达不到中庸的标准。这就像没有人不吃不喝, 但很少有人能真正品尝出其中的滋味一样。〕

 

(4)   Said Confucius;  “The doctrine of the mean has not been practiced, the reason for which as I see is that the wise goes beyond the norm of the mean, and the benighted fails to reach the standard of the mean.  The doctrine of the mean has not been obvious, the reason for which as I see is that the virtuous goes beyond the norm of the mean, and the unworthy fails to reach the standard of the mean.  Everybody eats and drinks, but few savour what they eat and drink.”

 

 

第五章

子曰 :〔道其不行矣夫!〕

 

今译

孔子说 :〔中庸之道大概是难以做得到的吧!〕

 

(5)   Said Confucius: “It is probable that the doctrine of the mean cannot be practiced without making efforts.”

 

 

第六章

子曰 :〔舜其大知也与!舜好问而好察迩言, 隐恶而扬善, 执其两端, 用其中于民, 其斯以为舜乎!〕

 

 

 

 

今译

孔子说 :〔舜可算是个最有智慧的人了吧!他喜欢询问别人, 又喜欢审察日常浅近的话, 掩盖人们不好的言行, 宣扬人们好的言行, 掌握过激和不足两个方面, 加以折衷, 施行于民众。这大概就是舜所以成其为舜的道理吧!〕

 

(6)   Said Confucius “Shun * may well be counted as a man of great wisdom He was inquisitive and fond of investigating the ordinary popular language.  He concealed others’ misbehaviour and publicized others’ good deeds.  What he did for the people was based on the mean he drew from the two extremities of things of diametric opposition.  That explains why he was esteemed as Shun.”         

 

* shun, a legendary  monarch of ancient China.

 

 

第七章

子曰 :〔人皆曰‘予知’; 驱而纳诸罟, 护陷阱之中而莫之知辟也。人皆曰‘予知’; 择乎中庸而不能期月守也。〕

 

今译

孔子说 :〔人人都说‘我聪明’, 可是, 被人驱赶进了罗网陷阱, 不知道躲避。人人都说‘我聪明’, 可是, 既然选择了中庸之道却又连恪守一个月的时间也做不到。〕

 

(7)   Said Confucius “Everybody says ‘I am wise’ but knows not to escape when driven to be trapped. Everybody says ‘I am wise’ but abides not for a month the doctrine of the mean for which he has opted.”

 

 

第八章

子曰 :〔回之为人也, 择乎中庸, 得一善, 则拳拳服膺而弗失之矣。〕

 

今译

 

孔子说 :〔颜回为人, 选择了中庸之道, 只要明白一个好的道理, 就牢牢记在心上, 永远不把它丢掉。〕

 

(8)   Said Confucius: “Yan Hui’s * attitude toward life is to follow the doctrine of the mean.  Once he learns a good doctrine, he bears it in mind and will never abandon it.”                                                             

*Yan Hui, one of the disciples Confucius taught personally.   

 

 

第九章

子曰 :〔天下国家可均也, 爵禄可辞也, 白刃可蹈也, 中庸不可能也。〕

 

今译

孔子说 :〔天下国家可以理好, 官爵俸禄可以推辞掉, 白光闪闪的刀刃可以踏上去, 中庸之道却不容易做得到。〕

 

(9)   Said Confucius The land under heaven can be administered to bring about great order across it official ranks and emoluments can be declined and sharp blades with blazing edges can be trod but the doctrine of the mean is not easy to practice.”

 

第十章

子路问 〔强〕。子曰 :〔南方之强与? 北方之强与? 抑而强与? 宽柔以教, 不报无道, 南方之强也。君子居之。衽金革, 死而不厌, 北方之强也。而强者居之。故君子和而不流, 强哉矫!中立而不倚, 强哉矫!国有道, 不变塞焉, 强哉矫!国无道, 至死不变, 强哉矫!〕

 

今译

子路询问什么是坚强。孔子说 :〔你问的是南方人的坚强呢, 北方人的坚强呢, 还是你自己这样的坚强呢? 以宽厚柔顺的精神教诲别人, 对暴虐无德的行为也不加报复, 这是南方人的坚强, 有良好品德修养的人安处此道。披坚执锐, 死而无憾, 这是北方人的坚强, 性格强悍的人奉行此道。因此, 有良好品德修养的人, 平和柔顺但又不随波逐流, 这是多么坚强啊!国家政治清明的时候, 不改变不得志时的志向, 这是多么坚强啊!国家政治黑暗的时候, 至死也不改变平时的操守, 这是多么坚强啊!〕

 

(10)  When asked by Zilu * to define strength, replied Confucius: “Which are you seeking, the strength of the southerners, of the northerners, or of yourself?  The southerners are strong in that they teach people the gist of magnanimity and gentleness, and advocate dismissing revenge for others’ invading atrocity.  It is the way with which a man of integrity is content.  The northerners are strong in that they buckle on their armours and take up weapons to go forth to bloody battles without fear of death.  It is the way with which a man of intrepidity is content.  Therefore, a man of good cultivation is placid and moderate, yet following no fashion but his own.  That is genuine strength.  He takes with impartiality the firm stand of the mean.  That is genuine strength.  If the government is upright and the state well governed, he cherished his aspirations he had when he was not in the ascendant.  That is genuine strength.  If the government is corrupt and the rule is dark, he still sticks to his normal course unto death.  That is genuine strength.”                                             

 

*Zilu, one of the disciples Confucius taught personally.                                         

 

 

第十一章

子曰 :〔素隐行怪, 后世有述焉, 吾弗为之矣。君子遵道而行, 半途而癈, 吾弗能已矣。君子依乎中庸, 遯世不见知而不悔, 唯圣者能之。〕

 

今译

孔子说 :〔追求生僻的道理, 好做出奇的事情, 会得到后世的称道, 但我不做这种事。品德修养好的人遵循中庸之道去做, 有人半涂而废, 但我是不能停止的, 品德修养好的人遵循中庸之道, 即使隐居山林而不被世人了解也不后悔, 这只有圣人才能够做到。〕

                                                                                                                 

(11)  Said Confucius: “Probing unto absurd and obscure senses and committing eccentricity, which may win appraisals from posterity, are what I shall never undertake.  Among the men of good cultivation following the doctrine of the mean, some may give up halfway, but I shall not following it.  Only the saints will not regret following the doctrine of the mean at the coast of remaining anonymous and unknown to the world.”

 

 

第十二章

君子之道, 费而隐。夫妇之愚, 可以与知焉; 及其至也, 虽圣人亦有所不知焉。夫妇之不肖, 可以能行焉; 及其至也, 虽圣人亦有所不能焉。天地之大也, 人犹有所憾。故君子语大, 天下莫能载焉; 语小, 天下莫能破焉。诗云 :〔鸢飞戾天, 鱼跃于渊。〕 言其上下察也。君子之道, 造端乎夫妇, 及其至也, 察乎天地。

 

今译

品德高尚的人所奉行的处世准则, 既普遍又深刻。一般道理, 连愚笨的男男女女也可以了解; 到高深精妙的地方, 即使圣人也不能完全明白。一般准则, 连不贤明的男男女女也能够做到; 到高深精妙的地方, 即使圣人也有做不到的。天地如此之伟大, 人们尚且还有不满意的地方。因此, 品德高尚的人说到道的博大, 博大到天下简直无法负载得了它; 说它细微, 细微到天下没有什么再能够把它分割。《诗经》上说 :〔鹞鹰飞向天空, 鱼儿跳入深渊。〕 这是比喻圣人之德在天地上下都是显明昭著的。品德高尚的人所奉行的处世准则, 起始于普通男女之间的所作所为; 到其最高深精妙之处, 则能显赫于天地宇宙之间。

 

(12)  The philosophy of life the men of high morality pursue is both common and profound.  Its general idea is known to ignorant men and women, but its recondite quintessence is beyond the attainment of the saint.  Its general standard is practicable to mediocre men and women, but its highest demand is beyond the reach of the saint. Great as the universe is, there are people who may feel discontent with it.  Therefore, the virtue of a man of  high  morality is so vast that the universe can hardly contain it, it is also so tiny that nothing in the universe can cut it apart.  It is said in The Book of Songs*:“Sparrow hawks fly up in the sky, fish swim down in the abyss.” That is by way of analogy to say that the virtue of the saint is highly clear on the earth as well as in the sky.  The philosophy of life the men of high morality pursue begins in the manners of the ordinary men and women, but its superlative manifestation is illustrious in the universe.  

* The Book of Songs, the earliest anthology of poems and one of the Five Classics.

 

第十三章

子曰 :〔道不远人, 人之为道而远人, 不可以为道。诗云 :‘伐柯, 伐柯, 其则不远。’执柯以伐柯, 睨而视之, 犹以为远。故君子以人治人, 改而止。

 

今译       

孔子说 :〔中庸之道是不远离人的。如果一个人奉行中庸之道而使它远离了人, 那就称不上是中庸之道了。《诗经》上说:〔随便砍块木头做斧柄, 会觉得那尺寸相差不远。〕 可是, 拿着斧柄去砍伐本头做斧柄, 斜起眼睛仔细比照一番, 倒会觉得还是相差很远。因此, 统治者只能根据各人的情况治理人们, 人家改正了以前的错误就要作罢。

 

忠如违道不远, 施诸己而不愿, 亦勿施于人。

 

今译

能够做到竭尽心力的〔忠〕 和推己及人的 〔恕〕, 这就离中庸之道不远了。凡是不愿意别人施加于自己的行为, 也就不要施加于别人。

 

君子之道四, 丘未能一焉。所求乎子以事父, 未能也; 所求乎臣以事君, 未能也; 所求乎弟以事兄, 未能也; 所求乎朋友先施之, 未能也。庸德之行, 庸言之谨; 有所不足, 不敢不勉; 有余不敢尽。言顾行, 行顾言, 君子胡不慥慥尔!〕

 

今译

品德高尚者所奉行的行为准则有四条, 我孔丘一条也没有做得到

用要求人子应有的行为去侍奉父亲, 我没有做到;

用要求人臣应有的行为去侍奉君王, 我没有做到;

用要求人弟应有的行为去侍奉兄长, 我没有做到;

要求朋友应该做到的自己首先去做, 我没有做到。

在遵守一般道德方面, 在普通言谈的谨慎方面, 做得不够的, 不敢不努力去做; 做得好的, 也不敢把话说尽。说话时要想到行动如何, 办事时也要想到说过的话。这样看来, 作为一个有道德的人, 怎么能不忠厚老实呢?

 

 

(13)        Said Confucius:“The doctrine of the mean never distances itself from any person.  If anyone pursuing the doctrine makes it unapproachable to others, then what he pursues in by no means the doctrine of the mean.  It said in The Book of Songs:‘Cut a piece of wood to make a helve, you will find its size fit.’  But when you squint to compare it with the helve in your hand, you will find its size unfit.  Therefore, the monarch of a country should rule over the people according to their individual conditions, and stop interfering in their conduct when their mistakes are corrected.

 

      “One nears the doctrine of the mean when he is faithful to and considerate of others.  What you would not have others do unto you should not be done unto them.

 

      “The code of conduct a man of moral integrity pursues includes four requirements, but I can fulfill none: I do not wait upon my father as a son should, I do not wait upon the monarch as a subject should, I do not wait upon my elder brother as a younger brother should, I do not take the initiative to do what I demand of my friends.  I dare not s top exerting myself to remedy my defects in observing moral standards and in speaking with prudence.  I dare not say fine words even if I do observe moral standards and speak with prudence.  Think of what you did when you speak, and think of what you said when you act.  Therefore, a man of high morality should be no otherwise than honest.”           

 

 

第十四章

 

君子素其位而行, 不愿乎其外。素富贵, 行乎富贵; 素贫贱, 行乎贫贱; 素夷狄, 行乎夷狄; 素患难, 行乎患难。君子无入而不自得焉!

 

今译

品德高尚的人总是根据自己平常所处的地位而行动, 不愿意超越本分。平常处于富贵地位的, 就做富贵地位的人应该做的; 平常处于贫贱地位的, 就做贫贱地位的人应该做的;平常处在夷狄地区的, 就做夷狄应该做的;平常处在患难境地的, 就做患难之人应该做的。品德高尚的人无论处在什么地位, 没有不是安分得的。

 

在上位不陵下; 在下位不援上, 正己而不求于人, 则无怨; 上不怨天, 下不尤人, 故君子居易以俟命, 小人行险以徼幸。子曰 :〔射有似乎君子, 失诸正鹄, 反求诸其身。〕

 

今译

处在上位, 不欺凌处于下位的人; 处在下位, 不高攀处于上位的人。端正自己的品行而不责求别人, 这样便没有什么怨恨。对上不怨恨天命, 对下不归咎别。因此, 品德高尚的人处于平安的地位等待天命, 品德低下的人行为冒险妄图意外地获得成功或免除不幸。孔子说 :〔射箭就像品德高尚者处事, 如果射不中靶心, 并不责怪别人, 而是回过头来责备自己。〕

 

(14) A man of  high morality acts in accordance with his status and seeks nothing beyond.  If he is ordinarily wealthy and ranking, he does what a man of wealth and rand should do; if he is ordinarily straitened and humble, he does what a man of straits and humbleness should do; if he is ordinarily in the minority areas, he does what a minority should do; if he is ordinarily in adversity, he does what a man in adversity should do.  A man of high morality knows and rests content with his place, whatever it may be.

 

      When he s superior in position, he never bullies anyone inferior to him; when he is inferior in position, he never fawns on anyone superior to him.  As he corrects his own misbehavior and never makes excessive demands of others, he bears no resentment against them.  He blames neither god, when looking upward, nor other people, when looking downward.  Therefore, a man of noble character remains at ease in his ordinary place to wait the mandate of heaven, while a man of vile character ventures to fluke success or to avoid mishap.  Said Confucius: “Shooting an arrow is analogous to a moral person’s handling affairs, if he misses the bull’s eye, he reproaches no one but himself.”

 

 

第十五章

 

君子之道, 辟如行远必自迩, 辟如登高必自卑。诗曰 :〔妻子好合, 如鼓瑟琴; 兄弟既翕, 和乐且耽; 宜尔室家, 乐尔妻帑。〕 子曰 :〔父母其顺矣乎!〕。

 

今译

品德高尚者实践他的行为准则, 好比走远路, 一定要从近处启程; 譬如登高处, 必须从低处出发。《诗经》上说:〔妻子儿女感情好, 如同琴瑟五音调。兄弟相处好亲密, 和睦愉快乐陶陶。让你家庭更美满, 让你妻儿欢乐多。〕 孔子说 :〔像这样, 父母就会顺心满意了吧!〕

 

(15)  A moral person’s practicing his code of conduct can be compared to taking a long journey which must start from the immediately close point or ascending a height which must begin from the bottommost ground.  It is said in the Book of Songs; “Living affectionately with one’s wife and children is like playing musical instruments harmoniously.  Getting along fraternally with one’s brother is highly delightful.  May your family be happy. May your wife and children be joyous.”  Said Confucius: “Parents will thus be satisfied.”

 

 

 

第十六章

 

子曰 :〔鬼神之为德, 其盛矣乎!视之而弗见, 听之而弗闻, 体物而不可遗。使天下之人, 齐明盛服, 以承祭祀, 洋洋乎如其上, 如在其左右。诗曰 :‘神之格思, 不可度思, 矧可射思。’夫微之显, 诚之不可掩如此夫!〕

 

今译

孔子说 :〔鬼神的德行真是伟大啊!看他看不见形体, 听也听不到声音, 但又生养万物无所遗漏, 使得天下的人都斋戒沐浴, 穿戴整齐, 举行祭祀。灵气浩荡, 像在人的头顶, 又像在人身旁。《诗经》里说:〔神的降临不可推测, 怎么能够懈怠不恭呢!〔鬼神的威力从隐微到显著, 它的诚信就是这样不能掩盖啊!〕

 

(16)  Said Confucius:“How mighty the virtue of the supernatural being is.  Though invisible when looked at, inaudible when listened to, its omnipresence nourishes everything under heaven, so that all people in the country abstain from meat and wine, take bath and dress themselves up to offer sacrifice to it.  People sense its existence as if it is above or around them.  It is said in The Book of Songs:“The advent of the god is unpredictable, how can we slack our reverential awe?”  The might of the supernatural being permeates things obscure and obvious, its trustworthiness is so evident that is can never be concealed by any means.”

 

 

第十七章

 

子曰 :〔舜其大孝也与!德为圣人, 尊为天子, 富有四海之内; 宗庙飨之, 子孙保之。故大德, 必得其位, 必得其禄, 必得其名, 必得其寿。故天之生物, 必因其材而笃焉, 故栽者培之, 倾者覆之。诗曰 :‘嘉乐君子, 宪宪令德, 宜民宜人, 受禄于天; 保佑命之, 自天申之’, 故大德者必受命。〕

 

 

 

今译

孔子说 :〔舜可算是顶孝顺的人了吧!论德行, 是圣人; 论尊贵, 是天子; 论富有, 则拥有四海之地。享受着宗庙的祭祀, 子子孙孙永远保持祭祀不断。因此, 凡是具有极高得的人, 一定会得到应有的尊位, 一定会得到应有的厚禄, 一定会得到应有的美名, 定会得到应有的高寿。因而上天生育万物, 一定会根据它们各自的资质而认真处置, 可以栽培的就培育它们, 倾倒了的也就只能让它们倒下去。《诗经》里说:〔美善和乐周成王, 赫赫盛德放光芒; 好叫臣民俱安乐, 受禄于天能久享。上天保佑又赐命, 永葆福禄万年长。〕所以, 凡具有极高德行的人一定会承受天做天子。

 

(17)  Said Confucius:“shun may be accounted as the most filial. In view of his virtue, he was a saint.  In view of the esteem he gained, he was the son ho Heaven.  In view of his wealth, he possessed the whole world.  He was and would ever be enshrined and offered sacrifices by posterity.  So a man of consummate virtue is bound to have all he deserves, the respected status, the handsome emoluments, the good reputation and the longevity.  Heaven creates all things in the universe, and handles them with measures suited to their nature ……..to cultivate the cultivable and let the toppled fall.  It is said in The Book of Songs: ‘How praiseworthy and pleasant King Cheng of the Zhou Dynasty is, how glorious his merit is, he makes all his subjects live in peace and happiness.  His reign, predestinated by Heaven, lasts for long, his bounties, blessed by Heaven, remain for aeon’.  Therefore, the man of consummate virtue is certainly to be the son of Heaven by the grace of God.”

 

 

第十八章

 

子曰 :〔无忧者, 其惟文王乎!以王季为父, 以武王为子; 父作之, 子述之。武王缵大王、王季、文王之绪, 壹戎衣而有天下, 身不失天下之显名; 尊为天子, 富有四海之内; 宗庙飨之 子孙保之。

 

今译

孔子说 :〔没有忧愁的人, 大概只有周文王吧!他有父亲王季, 有儿子武王, 父亲开拓, 儿子继承。武王继承太王古公亶父、王季、文王的功业, 灭了大殷王朝而得到天下。自身没有失去显赫的名声; 尊则为天子, 富则拥有四海, 享受宗庙的祭祀, 子子孙孙永保香火不断。

 

武王末受命, 周公成文武之德, 追王大王、王季, 上祀先公以天子之礼。斯礼也, 达乎诸侯、大夫及士、庶人。父为大夫, 子为士; 葬以大,夫, 祭以士。父为士, 子为大夫,葬以士, 祭以大夫。期之丧, 达乎大夫; 三年之丧, 达乎天子; 父母之丧, 无贵贱一也。〕

 

今译

〔周武王晚年承天命做天子; 武王死后, 周公成就了文王和武王的功德, 追加太王, 王季的帝王谥号, 按天子的礼制祭祀先祖, 这种礼制, 一直推行到诸侯、大夫, 以至士人、百姓之中。如果父亲是大夫, 儿子是士, 父亲死了, 埋葬就按照大夫的礼制, 祭祀则按照士的礼制; 如果父亲是士, 儿子是大夫, 父亲死了, 埋葬就按照士的礼制, 祭祀则按照大夫的礼制。一年守丧期的规定, 大夫也要遵守; 三年守丧期的规定, 天子也要遵守; 给父母守丧的规定, 不管地位尊卑, 都是一样的。〕

 

(18)  Said Confucius:“The only person free from all anxieties might be King Wen of the Zhou Dynasty, with meritorious deeds pioneered by his father Wang Ji and succeeded by his son King Wu.  King Wu carried forward and forged ahead the exploits of Tai Wang, Wang Ji and King Wen, and overthrew the Yin Dynasty to win the rule over the country.  He also retained a great renown.  He was esteemed as the son of Heaven, in possession of the whole world, to be enshrined and offered sacrifices by all the succeeding generations.

“After King Wu, Zhou Gong accomplished the great task of King Wen and  King Wu, and conferred upon Tai Wang and Wang Ji with posthumous titles as kings, and enshrined his ancestors with rites for sons of Heaven.  Rites of the same kind was later practiced among feudal dukes, princes, senior officials, shi* and the common people.  Suppose the father was a senior official and the son a shi, when the father died, his obsequies were celebrated with those for a senior official, and the enshrinement was that celebrated by a shi; if the father was a shi and the son a senior official, then the obsequies were those for a shi, and the enshrinement was that celebrated by a senior official.  The convention of one-year mourning period was abode by the senior officials, the convention of three-year mourning period was abode  even by the son of Heaven; and conventions of mourning period were abode by all the noble and the humble.”                                                  

*shi, the stratum between senior officials and common people.               

 

第十九章

 

子曰 :〔武王、周公其达孝矣乎!夫孝者善继人之志, 善述人之事者也。春秋,修其祖庙, 陈其宗器, 设其裳衣, 荐其时食。

 

今译

孔子说 :〔周武王和周公可算是通达孝道了吧!所谓孝, 就是善于继承人皂志向, 善于继承先人的事业。春秋祭祀的时候, 整修祖宗的庙宇, 陈列祖传的器具, 擉开祖先的衣服, 贡献应时的食品。

 

宗庙之礼, 所以序昭穆也; 序爵, 所以辨贵贱也; 序事, 所以辨贤也; 旅酬下为上, 所以逮贱也; 燕毛, 所以序齿也。

 

今译

宗庙祭祀的礼节, 是为了区别父子、长幼、亲疏的次序; 按照爵位排列顺序, 是为了分尊贵与卑贱; 按照职务排列顺序, 是为了区分贤与不贤; 卑下者依次给长辈敬酒, 是为了体现把恩典施加到卑下者身上; 按照毛发颜色黑白排列宴饮的座次, 是为了分别年龄大小。

 

践其位, 行其礼, 奏其乐; 敬其所尊, 爱其所亲; 事死如事生, 事亡如事存, 孝之至也。

 

今译

站到排定的位置上, 施行先王的礼节, 演奏先王的音乐, 尊敬先王所尊敬的, 热爱先王所热爱的, 侍奉死去的就像侍奉活着的一样, 侍奉不存在的就像侍奉存在的一样, 真是孝顺到极点了!

 

郊社之礼, 所以事上帝也; 宗庙之礼, 所以祀乎其先也。明乎郊社之礼, 禘尝之义, 治国其如示诸掌乎!〕

 

今译

举行祭天的郊礼和祭地的社礼, 是为了敬奉天帝; 举行宗庙的祭祀, 是为了祭祀自己的祖先。明白了〔郊〕、〔社〕、〔禘〕、〔尝〕 等各种大小祭祀的礼和意义, 那么, 治理国家大概就好像把东西摆在手掌上一样容易了吧!〕

 

(19)  Said Confucius:“KING Wu and Zhou Gong were well versed in the true implication of filial piety.  Filial piety means to carry out successfully the ideal and task of one’s ancestors.  When offering sacrifices to ancestors in spring and autumn, one should renovate the ancestral temple, display utensils and clothing left by the ancestors, and sacrifice foods in season. 

“Ceremonial rules of offering sacrifices in the ancestral temple is for making distinction between the father and the son, the elder and the young, and the close and distant relatives: to arrange sequence according to ranks is for distinguishing the noble and the humble; to arrange sequence according to positions is for distinguishing the prominent and the mediocre; to let the juniors toast in proper order their seniors is for reflecting the grace bestowed on the inferiors; to assign the seats at dinner according to the colour of hair is for distinguishing the differences of seniority. 

One should stand on the assigned position, observe the etiquettes set by the great kings of past dynasties, play their music, respect what they respected, and love what they loved.  To attend on the dead as if to attend on the living, or to attend on the nonexistent, as if to attend on the existent, is the utmost of filial piety.”

“Rites to offer sacrifices to Heaven and Earth are celebrations dedicated to God; to offer sacrifices in “ancestral temple is to worship one’s ancestors.  If  people understand the significances of different rites, such as offering sacrifices to Heaven and Earth, rites celebrated in the imperial ancestral temple and the autumn sacrificial ceremony, administering the country will be as easy as seeing things in one’s palm.”

 

 

第二十章

哀公问政。子曰 :〔文、武之政, 布在方策。其人存, 则其政举; 其人亡, 则其政息。人道敏政, 地道敏树。夫政也者, 蒲卢也。故为政在人; 取人以身, 修身以道, 修道以仁。

 

今译

鲁哀向孔子询问治理政事方面的事。孔子说 :〔周文王、周武王的政令, 都记载在各种典籍里。那圣君贤臣在, 那文王、武王的政令就能施行; 那些圣君贤臣没有了, 那文王 、武王的政令也便废止。用人坚持的法则是肯努力办理政事, 种地坚持的法则是肯努力栽培草木。这样政事就会像芦苇容易生长一样, 不难治理。所以为政之道, 关键在于有贤人。要想得贤人, 就必须搞好自身修养; 要想搞好自身修养, 就必须按照天下通行的准则进行; 要想做按天下通行的准则办事, 就必须遵循仁爱的原则。

 

仁者, 人也, 亲亲为大; 义者, 宜也, 尊贤为大。亲亲之杀, 尊贤之等, 礼所生也。故君子不可以不修身; 思修身, 不可以不事亲; 思事亲, 不可以不知人; 思知人, 不可以不知天。

 

今译

〔仁〕 的意思, 也就是 〔人〕。亲近爱戴自己的亲人是最大的仁。〔义〕 的意思, 也就是 〔宜〕。尊重贤者是最大的义。在亲近爱戴亲人方面的差别, 在尊重贤者方面的差别, 都是由礼节的要求而产生的。因此身居统治地位的人不能不搞好自身修养。要想搞好自身修养, 就不能不侍奉父母; 要想侍奉好父母, 就不能不知道关于尊贤爱人方面的道理; 要想了解关于尊贤爱人方面的道理, 就不能不知道关于天道方面的学问。〕

 

天下之达道五, 所以行之者三。曰:君臣也, 父子也, 夫妇也, 昆弟也, 朋友之交也, 五者, 天下之达道也; 知、仁、勇, 三者, 天下之达德也; 所以行之者, 一也。或生而知之, 或学而知之, 或困而知之, 及其知之, 一也。或安而行之, 或利而行之, 或勉强而行之, 及其成功, 一也〕。

 

今译

天下通行的伟大准则有五个方面, 赖以实行的品德有三点。君臣关系、父子关系、夫妇关系、兄弟关系、朋友交往, 这五个方面是天下通行的伟大准则。智慧、仁爱、勇敢, 这三点是天下通行的伟大品德, 而赖以实践这些伟大品德的条件则是一样的。这些, 有的人天生就知道, 有的人学习以后就知道, 有的人处困境以后才知道, 但当他们知道以后, 其结果则是同样的。有的人是心安理得地实行, 有的人是为谋求好处而实行, 有的人是勉勉强强地实行, 但当他们成功以后, 其结果则是同样的。

 

子曰 :〔好学近乎知, 力行近乎仁, 知耻近乎勇。知斯三者, 则知所以修身; 知所以修身, 则知所以治人; 知所以治人, 则知所以治天下国家矣。

 

今译

孔子说 :〔喜欢学习就接近智慧了, 努力行善就接近仁爱了, 知道羞耻就接近勇敢了。知道这三条, 那就知道该怎样加强自我修养; 知道怎样加强自我修养, 那就知道该怎样治理众人; 知道怎样治理众人, 那也就知道怎样治理天下治理国家了。〕

 

凡为天下国家有九经曰 :修身也, 尊贤也, 亲亲也, 敬大臣也, 体群臣也, 子庶民也, 来百工也, 柔远人也, 怀诸侯也。修身, 则道立; 尊贤, 则不惑; 亲亲, 则诸父昆弟不怨; 敬大臣, 则不眩; 体群臣, 则士之报礼重; 子庶民, 则百姓劝; 来百工, 则财用足; 柔远人, 则四方归之; 怀诸侯, 则天下畏之。

 

今译

大凡治理天下国家, 有九条准则, 这便是 :加强自我修养, 尊重贤人, 热爱亲人, 敬重大臣, 体恤众臣, 爱民如子, 招徕各种工匠, 对边远地区的人民实行怀柔政策, 安抚各国诸侯。 能够加强自我修养, 崇高的道德准则就能树立起来; 能够尊重贤人, 遇到问题就不会迷惑; 能够热爱亲人, 伯叔兄弟就不会有怨恨; 能够敬重大臣, 办事就会不糊涂; 能够体恤众臣, 士人就会加倍报答; 能够爱民如子, 百姓们就会自觉努力; 能够招徕各种工匠, 财富货物就会充足; 对边远地区的人民实行怀柔政策, 四方边境的人民就会归顺; 安抚各国诸侯, 天下人就会敬畏。

 

斋明盛服, 非礼不动, 所以修身也; 去谗远色, 贱货而贵德, 所以劝贤也; 尊其位, 重其禄, 同其好恶, 所以劝亲亲也; 官盛任使, 所以劝大臣也; 忠信重禄, 所以劝士也; 时使薄敛, 所以劝百姓也; 日省月试, 禀称事, 所以劝百工也; 送往迎来, 嘉善而矜不能, 所以柔远人也; 继绝世, 废国, 治乱持危, 朝聘以时, 厚往而薄来, 所以怀诸侯也。凡为天下国家有九经, 所以行之者, 一也。

 

今译

内心虔诚, 外表端庄, 不符合礼制的事不做, 这是自我修养的方法。摒除爱说别人坏话的小人, 远离漂亮的女子, 轻视财物而重视品德, 这是劝勉贤人的方法。让他们的爵位尊崇, 增加他们的俸禄, 同他们好恶一致, 这是劝勉热爱亲人的方法。为大臣多设下属官员而足以驱使, 这是劝勉大臣的方法。讲究忠诚信守, 俸禄丰厚, 这是劝勉士人的方法。役使适时, 轻征赋税, 这是劝勉百姓的方法。天天审察, 月月考核, 付给的粮食工薪同他们付出的劳动相称, 这是劝勉工匠的方法。走的欢送, 来的迎接, 嘉奖行为好的, 同情能力差的, 这是对边远地区人民进行怀柔的方法。让已经绝后的世系得以延续, 振兴已经没落了的邦国, 治理动乱, 扶持危难, 朝见聘问按时举行, 多给赏赐, 少要纳贡, 这是安抚诸侯的方法。治理天下国家的准则有九条, 而赖以实行这些准则的条件则是相同的。

 

凡事豫则立, 不豫则废; 言前定则不跲, 事前定, 则不困; 行前定. 则不疚; 道前定, 则不穷。

 

 

 

今译

任何事情, 事前有准备就能成功, 没有准备就会失败。说话前预先想定, 就不会语塞; 事情发生前预先想定, 就不会遭受挫折; 行动前预先想定, 就不会有什么毛病; 行为原则预先想定, 就不会走投无路。

 

在下位, 不获乎上, 民不可得而治矣; 获乎上有道, 不信乎朋友, 不获乎上矣; 信乎朋友有道, 不顺乎亲, 不信乎朋友矣; 顺乎亲有道, 反诸身不诚, 不顺乎亲矣; 诚身有道, 不明乎善, 不诚乎身矣。

 

今译

处在下位而不能得到处上位者的信任, 那就不能够治理好人民。要得到处上位者的信任是方法的 :如果不被朋友信任, 也就是不到处上位者的信任了。要取得朋友的信任是有方法的 :如果不顺从父母, 也就得不到朋友的信任了。要能够顺从父母是有方法的 :如果自身不诚实, 也就不能够顺从父母了。要想自身诚实是有方法的 :如果不明白什么是善, 自身也就不能诚实了。

 

诚者, 天之道也; 诚之者, 人之道也。诚者, 不勉而中, 不思而得, 从容中道, 圣人也; 诚之者, 择善而固执之者也。

博学之, 审问之, 慎思之, 明辨之, 笃行之。

 

今译

诚实, 这是自然的法则; 做到诚实, 这是为人的法则。自然的诚实, 不用勉强便能做到, 不用思索面能达到, 自然而然就能符合准则, 人能做到这样。让人们做到诚实, 则要选择善道而坚守不渝。要广博地学习, 详细地询问, 谨慎地思考, 清楚地辨别, 忠实地实行。

有弗学, 学之弗能弗措也; 有弗问, 问之弗知佛措也; 有弗思, 思之弗得弗措也; 有弗辨, 辨之弗明弗措也; 有弗行, 行之弗笃弗措也。人一能之, 己百之; 人十能之, 己千之。果能此道矣, 虽愚必明, 虽柔必强。〕

 

今译

要么不学习, 既然学习, 学不会就不罢休; 要么不询问, 既然询问, 弄不懂就不罢休; 要么不思考, 既然思考, 没有收获就不罢休; 要么不辨别, 既然辨别, 不辨别清楚就不罢休; 要么不实行, 既然实行, 不忠实努力地做彻底就不罢休。别人一次就能做到了, 我就学做一百次; 别人十次就能做到了, 我就学做一千次。果真能这样做, 既使愚笨也一定会变聪明, 即使柔弱也一定会变坚强。

                                                                                                                       

(20) Ai Gong, sovereign of the state of Lu, asked about the way to govern the state, replied Confucius:“The government decrees of King Wen and King Wu of the Zhou Dynasty were put down in the codes and records.  With the saint monarch and the virtuous ministers, decrees of King Wen and King Wu were enforced; without such monarch and ministers, these decrees would be annulled.  The knack of choosing right persons is to discern and make proper use of those who are diligent in serving the state, the knack of utilizing the earth is to plant bushes and trees.  Once the knack is known and put into effect, to govern the state is as easy as to plant cattail which grows fast.  The crux of governing a state is to gather the able and virtuous around yourself.  To gather them up you have to well cultivate yourself; to well cultivate yourself, you have to act according to norms generally accepted under the heaven; to act according to norms generally accepted under the heaven, you have to follow the principle of benevolence.

“To be ‘benevolent’ is to be ‘humane’.  To keep yourself close to the dear ones who love and esteem you is the greatest benevolence.  To be ‘righteous’ is to be ‘fitting and proper’.  To respect the able and virtuous is the greatest righteousness.  The different ways of keeping yourselfclose to the dear ones who love and esteem youand the different ways of respecting the able and virtuous result from different requirements of etiquettes.  Therefore,those who occupy dominant positions have to well cultivate themselves. Those who want to well cultivate themselves have to attend on their parents; those who want to attend on their parents have to k now the reasons for respecting the able and virtuous and loving others; those who want to know these reasons have to learn about the way of Heaven.”   

The great norms generally accepted under the heaven include five aspects whose realization depends upon three kinds of moral character.  The relation between the monarch and his subjects. The relation between the father and the son, the relation between the husband and the wife, the relation between brothers, and contacts with friends are the five aspects.  The three kinds of moral character of sagacity, charity and courage are generally respected under the heaven, and the conditions needed for manifesting such moral character are the same.  People know the above in different ways, some by natural gift, some by learning and some by going through hardships, but the effects the acquisition of the knowledge brings about upon them are the same.  People practice the above with different attitudes, some fell at ease and justified, some strive for benefits, and some are reluctant, but when they succeed in the practice, the effects the practice brings about upon them are the same.

Said Confucius: “One approaches the level of sagacity when he loves studying, one approaches the level of charity when he insists on doing good deeds, one approaches the level of courage when he has the sense of shame.  When one has known these three points, he knows how to enhance his self-cultivation; when one has known how to enhance his self-cultivation, he knows how to administer the people’s affairs; when one has known how to administer the people’s affairs, he knows how to administer the country.”                   

There are nine canons effecting administering the country:enhancing self-cultivation, esteeming the able and virtuous, keeping oneself close to the dear ones, knowing the ministers, showing solicitude for officials, loving the people as one loves his sons, drumming for craftsmen, carrying out the policy of mollification in outlying districts and placating the feudal dukes and princes.  To enhance self-cultivation is to achieve high moral standards; to esteem the able and virtuous enables one to avoid perplexed ness when confronting problems; to keep oneself close to the dear ones prevents resentment among uncles and brothers; to honor the ministers makes one clear-headed in his work; to show solicitude for officials prods them to requite one with redoubled efforts; to love the people as one loves his sons inspires them to work more self-consciously; to drum for craftsmen brings about abundance of goods; to carry out the policy of mollification in outlying districts results in their coming over and pledging allegiance; and to placate’ the feudal dukes and princes impels all people under the heaver to revere the monarch.                                             

To keep a pious heart and a dignified look, and refuse to do anything inconsistent with etiquettes are ways to enhance self-cultivation.  To dismiss those who speak ill of others, stay at a distance from beautiful women, despise wealth and value moral character are ways to appeal to the able and virtuous.  To keep the dear ones’ ranks of nobility venerated, raise their emoluments and have the same taste as theirs are ways to draw them to oneself.  To leave sufficient subordinates at the ministers’ disposal is the way to encourage them to advise more.  To keep one’s word and let the officials high-salaried are ways to make them work harder.  To impose on the people timely corvee and low tax is the way to attract them.  To pay the craftsmen wages and supply them food on the basis of daily and monthly investigation are ways to stimulate them to do their best.  To see off those who depart and welcome those who arrive, praise those doing good deeds and sympathize with those lacking in capability are ways to mollify the people in outlying districts.  To last the pedigree whose  existence is at stake, revive the declining states, curb the riots, support those in perils, grant audiences and receive tributes on the right time, bestow more rewards and take in fewer tributes are ways to placate the feudal dukes and princes.  The conditions needed for fulfilling the nine canons are the same.

Preparedness ensures success, while unpreparedness spells failure.  To be beforehand with one’s words, one can prevent speaking haltingly; to be beforehand with the emerging problem, one can prevent frustration, to be beforehand with one’s action, one can prevent making mistakes; to be beforehand with one’s behavioral principle, one can prevent going into an impasse.             

If a subordinate is not in his superior’s confidence, he can never administer the people’s affairs.  There is a way to have the superior’s confidence: one will not have it unless he has his friends’ confidence.  There is a way to have one’s friends’ confidence: one will not have it unless he is obedient to his parents.  There is a way to be obedient to one’s parents: one will not be so obedient unless he is honest.  There is a way to be honest: one will not be honest unless he knows what good is.

Honesty is the way of Heaven, to be honest is the way of man.  The saint displays natural honesty, he does so ungrudgingly, he achieves it without thinking, but his conduct is fit spontaneously for the standard set by the way of Heaven.  As for the ordinary men, they have to make choice of and adhere to the proper way to be honest: to study extensively, inquire meticulously, think cautiously, discern clearly and practice sincerely.

If one is to study, he should never give up until he masters the subject he studies; if one is to inquire, he should never give up until he understands the question he inquires; if one is to think, he should never give up until he acquires a knowledge of what he thinks; if one is to discern, he should never give up until he makes a clear distinction between things; if one is to practice, he should never give up until he carries the doct6rine through to the end.  When engaged in an activity, I should work it out by one hundred times while others need only once, I shall work it out by one thousand times while others need only ten times.  If this is really done, the ignorant will be intelligent, and the frail will be firm.

 

 

第二十一章

 

自诚明, 谓之性; 自明诚, 谓之教。诚则明矣, 明则诚矣。

 

今译

由于内心诚实而做到明察事理, 这叫做天赋的本性; 由于明察事理而做到内心诚实, 这叫做后天的教化。做到内心诚实就能做到明察事理了, 而能够做到明察事理也就能够做到内心诚实了。

                                                                                                                                   

(21)    The sharp-sightedness in discernment resulting from the innermost honesty is an innate nature; the innermost honesty resulting from the sharp-sightedness in discernment is due to postnatal inculcation.  When one is honest in his innermost being, he may well be sharp-sighted in discernment; and when one is sharp-sighted in discernment, he may well be honest in his innermost being.           

 

 

第二十二章

 

唯天下至诚, 为能尽其性; 能尽其性, 则能尽人之性; 能尽人之性, 则能尽物之性; 能尽物之性, 则可以赞天地之化育; 可以赞天地之化育, 则可以与天地参矣。

 

今译

只有天下最真诚的人, 才能够完全发挥个人的本性; 能够完全发挥个人的本性, 就能够完全发挥众人的本性; 能够完全发挥众人的本性, 就能够完全发挥万物的本性; 能够完全发挥万物的本性, 就能够帮助天地养育万物; 能够帮助天地养育万物, 也就能够与天地相并列了。

 

(22)        Only the saint who is the most honest can develop his individuality to perfection; when his individuality  fully developed, he can bring potentiality of the masses into full play in accordance with their inherent qualities; when the potentialities of the masses fully tapped, he can make the most of everything under heaven in accordance with their properties; when everything under heaven fully wielded, he can help the Heaven and the Earth grow and nourish everything; when everything is make to grow and nourish, he can stand side by side with the Heaven and the Earth.                                  

 

 

第二十三章

 

其次致曲, 曲能有诚; 诚则形, 形则着, 着则明, 明则动, 动则变, 变则化; 唯天下至诚为能化。

 

今译

次一等的人则能从局部小事做起。从局部小事做起也能做到内心诚实。做到内心诚实就会表现出来, 表现出来就会变清楚, 变清楚就会光辉明亮, 光辉明亮就会激励人心, 激励人心就会改变人心, 改变人心就会移风易俗, 只有天下最诚实的人才能做到移风易俗。

                                                                                                                                   

(23)  Those who are second to the saint, though engaged in activities of minor importance, can also attain innermost honesty.  When one is honest in his innermost being, he is bound to demonstrate his honesty.  Honesty when demonstrated will illuminate and shine bright, then strike the hearts of the people, and remould their mind.  When it remould people’s mind, it transforms the prevailing habits and customs.  This task can only be fulfilled by the most honest.                                                                         

 

第二十四章

 

至诚之道, 可以前知 :国家将兴, 必有祯祥; 国家将亡, 必有妖孽; 见乎蓍龟, 动乎四体; 祸福将至, 善, 必先知之, 不善, 必先知之; 故至诚如神。

 

今译

做到极端诚实, 可以预知未来。国家将要振兴的时候, 一定会有吉祥的征兆; 国家将要灭亡的时候, 一定会有不祥的征兆。这些征兆会在蓍草龟甲上表现出来, 在四肢动作上反映出来。祸福将要降临时, 好事一定会预先知道, 坏事也一定会预先知道。所以, 做到极端诚实就会如同神灵一般。

 

(24)    When one is extremely honest he foresees things to happen.  Auspicious omens are seen when the country is going to prosper and portentous omens are seen when the country is going to decline.  Such omens appear on the divinatory herbs and tortoiseshells, and reflect in how the related persons move their four limbs.  When a misfortune or a good luck is to befall, what will turn out to be good is foreknown, and so is what will turn out to be bad.  Therefore, the extremely honest ca n be compared to supernatural beings.                                  

 

第二十五章

诚者, 自成也; 而道, 自道也。诚者, 物之终始