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Chinese Text Project
Show translation:[None] [English]

《吾子卷第二 - My Master》

English translation: Jeffrey S. Bullock [?] Library Resources
1 吾子卷第... :
或問:「吾子少而好賦。」曰:「然。童子雕蟲篆刻。」俄而曰:「壯夫不為也。」或曰:「賦可以諷乎?」曰:「諷乎!諷則已,不已,吾恐不免於勸也。」或曰:「霧縠之組麗。」曰:「女工之蠹矣。」《劍客論》曰:「劍可以愛身。」曰:「狴犴使人多禮乎?」
My Master:
Someone asked: When my Master was young, were you good at fu?
Yangzi said: Yes. As a youngster I practiced cutting bronze, seal, and tally scripts.
After a moment he said: Adults do not do this.
The other said: Can fu not be used for remonstration through satire?
Yangzi said: Satire! Once it satirizes, then it should stop. When it does not end, I am afraid that it does not avoid becoming encouragement.
The other said: Like the silken beauty of misty gauze?
Yangzi said: It is the worm in women's work.
The other said: The Swordsman's Treatise says: "The sword can be used to protect the body."
Yangzi said: But can the skills of a swordsman make men more skilled in li?

2 吾子卷第... :
或問:「景差、唐勒、宋玉、枚乘之賦也,益乎?」曰:「必也淫。」「淫則奈何?」曰:「詩人之賦麗以則,辭人之賦麗以淫。如孔氏之門用賦也,則賈誼升堂,相如入室矣。如其不用何?」
My Master:
Someone asked: Were the fu of Jing Cha, Tang Le, Song Yu, and Mei Cheng not of value?
Yangzi said: They were excessive by necessity.
The other said: What do you mean by "excessive?"
Yangzi said: The fu of those who wrote shi style verse achieved beauty by means of standards. The fu of those who wrote ci style verse achieved beauty by means of going to excess. If the Confucian school had used fu, Jia Yi [would have] ascended the hall and Sima Xiangru [would have] entered the inner chambers. How could they have, if not for having used [fu]!

3 吾子卷第... :
或問「蒼蠅紅、紫」。曰:「明視。」問「鄭衛之似」。曰:「聰聽。」或曰:「朱、曠不世,如之何?」曰:「亦精之而已矣。」
My Master:
Someone asked about those who can reverse black and white and dazzle the eyes with unorthodox colors.
Yangzi said: Look clearly.
The other said: What if I hear music like that of Zheng and Wei?
Yangzi said: Listen clearly.
The other said: Li Zhu and Music Master Kuang are already dead. What can be done?
Yangzi said: Single-mindedly concentrate on seeing and hearing and that's all.

4 吾子卷第... :
或問:「交五聲、十二律也,或雅或鄭,何也?」曰:「中正則雅,多哇則鄭。」「請問本。」曰:「黃鐘以生之,中正以平之,確乎鄭、衛不能入也!」
My Master:
Someone asked: All music is based on the five tones and the twelve note scale, yet some music is ceremonial, and some is [like that of] Zheng and Wei. Why?
Yangzi said: If it is proper and correct, then it is ceremonial. If it is excessive and unrestrained, then it is like that of Zheng and Wei.
May I ask about the fundamentals of making music?
Yangzi said: If the huangzhong is used as the root for producing the twelve note scale, and if one uses moderation and a correct attitude to make the notes of properly equal pitch, then one can insure that the music of Zheng and Wei will not be able to enter into and defile one's music.

5 吾子卷第... :
或曰:「女有色,書亦有色乎?」曰:「有。女惡華丹之亂窈窕也,書惡淫辭之淈法度也。」
My Master:
Someone said: Women have beauty, but do books not also have beauty?
Yangzi said: They do. With women, one hates cosmetics that ruin their beauty. With books, one hates excessive words that create chaos in laws and institutions.

6 吾子卷第... :
或問:「屈原智乎?」曰:「如玉如瑩,爰變丹青。如其智!如其智!」
My Master:
Someone asked: Was Qu Yuan wise or not?
Yangzi said: Like jade, like chiseled jade—transformed into reds and greens! But such was his wisdom, such was his wisdom!

7 吾子卷第... :
或問:「君子尚辭乎?」曰:「君子事之為尚。事勝辭則伉,辭勝事則賦,事、辭稱則經。足言足容,德之藻矣!」
My Master:
Someone asked: Does the junzi esteem words?
Yangzi said: The junzi esteems reality. When the reality goes beyond the words, it is unrefined. When the words go beyond the reality, then it is exaggerated like fu. When the reality and the words are in balance, then it is a standard. Both words and comportment fully adequate, that is how to embellish de.

8 吾子卷第... :
或問:「公孫龍詭辭數萬以為法,法與?」曰:「斷木為棋,捖革為鞠,亦皆有法焉。不合乎先王之法者,君子不法也。」
My Master:
Someone asked: Gongsun Long took his ten thousand clever words to be a model. Can they be used as a model?
Yangzi said: Cutting wood to make chess pieces and scraping hides to make a ball, these kinds of activities all have a model. But as for those things that do not accord with the model of the former kings, the junzi does not take them as a model.

9 吾子卷第... :
觀書者譬諸觀山及水,升東嶽而知眾山之邐迤也,況介丘乎?浮滄海而知江河之惡沱也,況枯澤乎?舍舟航而濟乎瀆者,末矣;舍五經而濟乎道者,末矣。棄常珍而嗜乎異饌者,惡睹其識味也?委大聖而好乎諸子者,惡睹其識道也?」
My Master:
Looking at the the Confucian Books is comparable to looking at mountains and water: Ascending Mt. Tai, one knows the small and winding landscape of the other mountains of the range, how much more that of the little hills. Floating on the blue-green ocean, one knows the muddiness of the rivers, how much more that of the dried up marshes. Throwing away the boat and yet crossing a great river, there has never been anyone who could do this]. Thowing away the Five Classics and yet reaching the Dao, there has never been anyone who could do this either! As for one who rejects the regular delicacies and is fond of strange dishes, how do you know that he can recognize tastes? As for one who abandons the great sage and loves the various philosophers, how do you know that he can recognize the Dao?

10 吾子卷第... :
山𡷨之蹊,不可勝由矣;向墻之戶,不可勝入矣。曰:「惡由入?」曰;「孔氏。孔氏者,戶也。」曰:「子戶乎?」曰:「戶哉!戶哉!吾獨有不戶者矣?」
My Master:
A trail down a mountain ravine cannot be followed to the end; a door facing a wall cannot be entered.
The other said: From where can one enter?
Yangzi said: Confucius. Confucius is the door.
The other said: Have you passed through Confucius's door?
Yangzi said: The door! The door! How could I be the only one who has not entered through the door?

11 吾子卷第... :
或欲學《蒼頡》、《史篇》。曰:「史乎!史乎!愈於妄闕也。」
My Master:
Someone wanted to study the Cangjie and the Shipian.
Yangzi said: The Shi! The Shi! It is better than forgetting about and losing it!

12 吾子卷第... :
或曰:「有人焉,曰雲姓孔而字仲尼,入其門,升其堂,伏其几,襲其裳,則可謂仲尼乎?」曰:「其文是也,其質非也。」「敢問質。」曰:「羊質而虎皮,見草而說,見豺而戰,忘其皮之虎矣。」
My Master:
Someone said: Suppose there is a man who says that his surname is Kong, and his name Zhongni. If he enters Confucius's gate, ascends his hall, sits in his chair, and wears his clothes, then may he be called Confucius?
Yangzi said: His outer appearance (wen), yes. His zhi, no.
The other said: May I dare ask about zhi?
Yangzi said: One who has a sheep's zhi and a tiger's skin sees grass and is happy, sees a jackal and shivers. He forgets he is wearing a tiger's skin.

13 吾子卷第... :
聖人虎別,其文炳也。君子豹別,其文蔚也。辯人貍別,其文萃也。貍變則豹,豹變則虎。
My Master:
The sage is in the tiger class, his stripes (wen) are bright and distinct. The junzi is in the leopard class, his spots (wen) are colorful and abundant. The sophists are in the wildcat class, their markings (wen) are collected together thickly. If the wildcat transforms, then he is a leopard. If the leopard transforms, then he is a tiger.

14 吾子卷第... :
好書而不要諸仲尼,書肆也。好說而不要諸仲尼,說鈴也。君子言也無擇,聽也無淫,擇則亂,淫則辟。述正道而稍邪哆者有矣,未有述邪哆而稍正也。
My Master:
People who love books but do not seek instruction from Confucius are like a bookshop. Those who love to engage in persuasion but do not seek instruction from Confucius talk like jingling bells. What the junzi says does not corrupt others. What he listens to is without exaggeration. Corruption results in disorder. Exaggeration results in the unorthodox. There have been those who transmitted the straight dao but gradually went crooked; but there has never been anyone who transmitted the crooked dao and gradually went straight.

15 吾子卷第... :
孔子之道,其較且易也。或曰:「童而習之,白紛如也,何其較且易?」曰:「謂其不奸奸,不詐詐也。如奸奸而詐詐,雖有耳目,焉得而正諸?」
My Master:
Confucius's dao—how clear and easy it is!
Someone said: Starting from his youth and practicing it, one studies until his hair turns white, and he is still confused. How can you say it is so clear and easy?
Yangzi said: I am referring to its not being crooked in order to deal with the crooked, and not being crafty in order to deal with the crafty. If it were crooked and crafty, even though you had ears and eyes, how would you be able to correct them.

16 吾子卷第... :
多聞則守之以約,多見則守之以卓。寡聞則無約也,寡見則無卓也。
My Master:
If you hear much, then hold onto the essential. If you see much, then hold onto the profound. If you do not hear much, then nothing is essential. If you do not see much, then nothing is profound.

17 吾子卷第... :
綠衣三百,色如之何矣!紵絮三千,寒如之何矣!
My Master:
Three hundred green robes—but what about the color? Three thousand scraps of hemp—but what about the cold?

18 吾子卷第... :
君子之道有四易:簡而易用也,要而易守也,炳而易見也,法而易言也。
My Master:
The dao of the junzi is easy in four ways: being simple, it is easy to use; being essential, it is easy to grasp; being bright, it is easy to see; being the model, it is easy to explain.

19 吾子卷第... :
震風陵雨,然後知夏屋之為帡幪也;虐政虐世,然後知聖人之為郛郭也。
My Master:
After thunderous winds and heavy rains, one knows that a big house is a shelter. After harsh government and a chaotic age, one knows the sage is a bastion wall.

20 吾子卷第... :
古者楊墨塞路,孟子辭而辟之,廓如也。後之塞路者有矣,竊自比於孟子。
My Master:
Among the ancients, Yang Zhu and Mo Di blocked the road, Mengzi spoke and burst it open, making the road broad. There were others after him who blocked the road. I humbly compare myself to Mengzi.

21 吾子卷第... :
或曰:「人各是其所是而非其所非,將誰使正之?」曰:「萬物紛錯則懸諸天,眾言淆亂則折諸聖。」或曰:「惡睹乎聖而折諸?」曰:「在則人,亡則書,其統一也。」
My Master:
Someone asked: Each person affirms what he affirms and denies what he denies—who will set them right?
Yangzi said: If the ten thousand things are confused and disorderly, they are corrected by Tian; if the multitude of words are confused and chaotic, then they are judged by the sage.
Someone said: Whence can one look to a sage to render judgment?
Yangzi said: When he is alive, there is the man; when he is gone, there are the Books. Their guiding principle is the same.

URN: ctp:yangzi-fayan/juan-er