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they naturally derive benefit ;-—is not this being beneficent without great expenditure? When he chooses the abours which are proper, and makes them labour on them, who will repine’! When
is desires are set on benevolent government, and he secures it, who will accuse him of coveteusness’! Whether he has to do with many people or few, or with things great or small, he does not dare to indicate any disres ect ;-—is not this to maintain a dignified ease without any pride ? i-Ie adjusts his clothes and cap, and throws a dignity into his looks, so that, thus dignified, he is looked at with awe ;—is not this to be majestic without being fierce ? ’
3. Tsze-chang then asked, ‘ What are meant by the four bad things?’ The Master said, ‘To put the people to death without having instructed them ;—this is called cruelty. To require from them, suddenly, the full tale of work, without having given them warning ;—this is called oppression. To issue orders as if without urgency, at first, and, when the time comes, to insist on them with severity ;—this is called injury. And, generally, in the giving pay
meaning of the phrase, Confucius describing iii—S69 VH- xxllVii- 3- m R principles to be observed by all in authority,
or rewards to men, to do it in a stingy way ;—this is called acting
I. The Master said, ‘Without recognising the ordin
ances of Heaven, it is impossible to be a superior man. 2. ‘ Without an acquaintance with the rules of Propriety, it is
impossible for the character to be 3. ‘ Without knowing the force
My master, the philosopher 0 'dng, says:—‘ The Great Learning is a Book transmitted by the Confucian School, and forms the gate by which first learners enter into virtue. That we can now perceive the order in which the ancients pursued their learnng is solely owing to the preservation of this work, the Analects and Men
cius coming after it.
Learners must commence their course with this, and then
paraphrasts who follow him says-j:
in opposition to children.’ The grounds of Chu Hsi’s interpretation are to be found in his very elegant preface to the Book, where he tries to make it out, that we have here the subjects taught in the advanced schools of antiquity. I have contented myself with the title—‘The Great Learning,’ which is a literal translation of the characters, whether read as
Tm: rmonncronr Horn—I have thought it well to translate this, and all the other notes and supplements appended by one Hsi to the original text, because they appear in nearly all the editions of the work, which fall into the hands of students, and his view of the classics is what must be regarded as the orthodox one. The translation, which is here given, is also, for the most part, according to his views, though my own differing opinion will be found freely expressed in the notes. Another version, following the order of the text, before it was transposed by him and his masters, the Ch‘ang, and without reference to his interpretations, will be found in the translation of the
I. What the Great Learning teaches, is—to illustrate illustrious virtue ; to renovate the people; and to rest in the hi hest excellence. 2. The point where to rest being known, the obJect of pursuit is then determined; and, that bein determined, a calm unperturbed
ness may be attained to.
To t at calmness there will ,succeed a
tranquil repose. In that repOse there may be careful deliberation,
not in the same condition as himself.—‘The highest exoellence’ is understood of the two previous matters. It is not a third and different object of pursuit, but indicates a perseverance in the two others, till they are perfectly accomplished—According to these explanations, the objects contemplated in the Great Learning are not three, but two. Suppose them realised, and we should have the whole world of mankind perfectly good, every individual what he ought to be 1
Against the above interpretation, we have to
consider the older and simpler. \ is there
not the nature, but simply virtue, or virtuous conduct, and the first object in the Great Learning is the making of one’s self more and more illustrious in virtue, or the practice of benevolence, reverence, filial piety, kindness,
and sincerity. See the iii 21: j: g gt
also, there would seem to be only two objects, for what essential distinction can we make between the first and third? There will be occasion below to refer to the reasons for changing a into $i', and their unsatisfactoriness. ‘ To love the people’ is, doubtless, the second thing taught by the Great Learning—Having the heads of the Great learning now before us, according to both interpretations of it, we feel that the student of it should be a sovereign, and not an ordinary man.
Par. 2. The mental process by which the point Qf rest may be attained. I confess that I do not well understand this paragraph, in the relation of its parts in itself, nor in relation to the rest
of the chapter. Chu Hsi says :—‘ it is the
ground where we ought to rest ; ’—namely, the highest excellence mentioned above. But if
and that deliberation will be followed by the attainment of the
3. Things have their root and their branches. Affairs have their
end and their beginning.
To know what is first and what is last
will lead near to what is taught in the Great Learning.
4. The ancients who wished to illustrate illustrious virtue throughout the kingdom, first ordered well their own States. Wishing to order well their States, they first re lated their families. Wishing to regulate their families, they hgrliit cultivated their persons. Wishing to cultivate their persons, they first rectified their hearts.
that what is right in afi'airs is attained.’ Perhaps, the paragraph just intimates that the objects of the Great Learning being so great, a calm, serious thoughtfulness is required in proceeding to seek their attainment.
Par. 3. The order of things and methods in the two preceding paragraphs. So, according to Chu Hsi, does this paragraph wind up the two preceding. ‘The illustration of virtue,’ he says, ‘is the root, and the renovation of the people is the completion (literally, the branches). Knowing where to rest is the beginning, and being able to attain is the end. The root and the beginning are what is first. The completion and end are what is Iast.’——The adherents of the old commentators say, on the contrary, that this paragraph is introductory to the succeeding ones. They