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1. 陳子禽謂子貢曰:「子為恭也,仲尼豈賢於子乎?」

2. 子貢曰:「君子一言以為知,一言以為不知,言不可不慎也。

3. 夫子之不可及也,猶天之不可階而升也。

4. 夫子之得邦家者,所謂立之斯立,道之斯行,綏之斯來,動之斯和。其生也榮,其死也哀。如之何其可及也!」


1. Ch'an Tsze-ch'in, addressing Tsze-kung, said, 'You are too modest. How can Chung-ni be said to be superior to you?'

2. Tsze-kung said to him, 'For one word a man is often deemed to be wise, and for one word he is often deemed to be foolish. We ought to be careful indeed in what we say.

3. 'Our Master cannot be attained to, just in the same way as the heavens cannot be gone up by the steps of a stair.

4. 'Were our Master in the position of the ruler of a State or the chief of a Family, we should find verified the description which has been given of a sage's rule:--he would plant the people, and forthwith they would be established; he would lead them on, and forthwith they would follow him; he would make them happy, and forthwith multitudes would resort to his dominions; he would stimulate them, and forthwith they would be harmonious. While he lived, he would be glorious. When he died, he would be bitterly lamented. How is it possible for him to be attained to?'

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IATHPublished by The Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities, © Copyright 2003 by Anne Kinney and the University of Virginia