"In ancient times Yao abdicated in favor of Shun and Shun ruled as emperor; K'uai abdicated in favor of Chih and Chih was destroyed. T'ang and Wu fought and became kings; Duke Po fought and was wiped out. Looking at it this way, we see that struggling or giving way, behaving like a Yao or like a Chieh, may be at one time noble and at another time mean. It is impossible to establish any constant rule.Times change. Different generations value different things. As knowledge and insight progress, new information causes us to view issues in a different light. While there may be some underlying principles that span time, how we interpret and express them changes with the years.
~ Burton Watson translation ~
To view the Index page for this series, go here.