Saturday, May 28, 2011

Selections From Mencius I

Selections From Mencius I
by Scott Bradley


"It was by sharing their enjoyment with the people that men of antiquity were able to enjoy themselves." (Mencius I A 2; D.C. Lau)

"You must work at it [rightness] and never let it out of your mind. At the same time...you must not help it to grow either...There was a man from Sung who pulled at his rice plants to make them grow...There are few in the world who can resist the urge to help their rice plants grow." (II A 2)

"Had it been necessary to perpetrate one wrongful deed or kill one innocent man in order to gain the Empire, none of them [ancient worthies] would have consented to it." (II A 2)

"The Yellow River and the Sea are no different from the water that runs in the gutter. The sage, too, is the same in kind as other men." (II A 2)

"Yang Hu said, 'If one's aim is wealth one cannot be benevolent; if one's aim is benevolence, one cannot be wealthy.'" (III A 3)

"There never was a man who could straighten others out by bending himself." (III B 1)

"I am not fond of disputation. I have no alternative." (III B 9)

"If others do not respond to your love with love, look into your own benevolence; if others fail to respond to your attempts to govern them, look into your own wisdom; . . . . In other words, look into yourself whenever you fail to achieve your purpose." (IV A 3)

"The Way lies at hand yet it is sought afar off; the thing lies in the easy yet it is sought in the difficult." (IV A 11)

"There has never been a man totally true to himself who fails to move others. On the other hand, one who is not true to himself can never hope to move others." (IV A 12)

"The trouble with people is that they are too eager to assume the role of teacher." (IV A 23)

"Only when a man will not do some things is he capable of doing great things." (IV B 8)

You can check out Scott's other miscellaneous writings here.

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