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

《淵騫卷第十一 - Yuan and Qian》

English translation: Jeffrey S. Bullock [?] Library Resources
1 淵騫卷第... :
或問:「淵、騫之徒惡乎在?」曰:「寢。」或曰:「淵、騫曷不寢?」曰:「攀龍鱗,附鳳翼,巽以揚之,勃勃乎其不可及也。如其寢!如其寢!」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked: Who are Yan Hui and Min Ziqian's followers?
Yangzi said: They remain unknown.
The other said: Why did Yan Hui and Min Ziqian not remain unknown?
Yangzi said: It is like holding on to the dragon's scales or hanging on to the wings of the phoenix. They rose on the wind, soaring to heights that cannot be reached. How could they remain unknown! How could they remain unknown!

2 淵騫卷第... :
七十子之於仲尼也,日聞所不聞,見所不見,文章亦不足為矣。
Yuan and Qian:
When the seventy disciples were with Confucius, every day they heard things that they had never heard before and saw things that they had never seen. Indeed, there was not enough time to produce literary works.

3 淵騫卷第... :
君子絕德,小人絕力。或問「絕德」。曰:「舜以孝,禹以功,臯陶以謨,非絕德邪?」「力」。「秦悼武、烏獲、任鄙扛鼎抃牛,非絕力邪?」
Yuan and Qian:
The junzi strives for incomparable de. The petty person strives for incomparable strength.
Someone asked: What is incomparable de?
Yangzi said: Shun's filial piety, Yu's labors, Gao Yao's planning—are these not examples of incomparable de?
The other said: What about strength?
Yangzi said: To lift cauldrons on one's shoulders or wrestle oxen like King Dao Wu of Qin, Wu Huo or Ren Bi—are these not examples of incomparable strength?

4 淵騫卷第... :
或問「勇」。曰:「軻也。」曰:「何軻也?」曰:「軻也者,謂孟軻也。若荊軻,君子盜諸。」「請問孟軻之勇。」曰:「勇於義而果於德,不以貧富、貴賤、死生動其心,於勇也,其庶乎!」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked about courage.
Yangzi said: Ke had it.
The other said: Which Ke?
Yangzi said: The Ke I refer to is Meng Ke. As for Jing Ke, a junzi would consider him a bandit.
May I ask about Meng Ke's courage?
Yangzi said: He was courageous in yi and determined in de. Poverty and wealth, honor and lowliness, and life and death did not move his xin. In terms of courage, was he not almost perfect?

5 淵騫卷第... :
魯仲連蕩而不制,藺相如制而不蕩。
Yuan and Qian:
Lu Zhonglian was unsettled and did not serve in office. Lin Xiangru served in office and was settled.

6 淵騫卷第... :
或問「鄒陽」。曰:「未信而分疑,慷辭免罿,幾矣哉!」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked about Zou Yang.
Yangzi said: He was not trusted and raised his share of suspicions, but he defended himself with an emotional plea and escaped the bird catcher's net. He was almost perfect!

7 淵騫卷第... :
或問:「信陵、平原、孟嘗、春申益乎?」曰:「上失其政,奸臣竊國命,何其益乎?」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked: Lords Xinling, Ping Yuan, Meng Chang, and Chun Shen were of benefit to their kingdoms, were they not?
Yangzi said: When rulers lose control of the government and villainous ministers steal the kingdom's mandate, where is the benefit in this?

8 淵騫卷第... :
樗里子之知也,使知國如葬,則吾以疾為蓍龜。
Yuan and Qian:
As for Shuli Zi's knowledge of the future—If he had known the fate of his kingdom like that of his tomb, then I would take him to be my milfoil sticks and tortoise shells.

9 淵騫卷第... :
「周之順、赧以成周而西傾,秦之惠文、昭襄,以西山而東並,孰愈?」曰:「周也羊,秦也狼。」「然則狼愈歟?」曰:「羊狼一也。」
Yuan and Qian:
From Cheng Zhou in the East King Shen Jing and King Nan of Zhou looked admiringly at the Qin in the west. From Xishan in the west, King Huiwen and King Zhao Xiang of Qin stood equal to the six kingdoms in the east. Which was better?
Yangzi said: The Zhou were like sheep, the Qin were like wolves.
The other said: This being so, is the wolf not better?
Yangzi said: Sheep, wolves—they are the same.

10 淵騫卷第... :
或問:「蒙恬忠而被誅,忠奚可為也?」曰:「塹山堙谷,起臨洮,擊遼水,力不足而死有餘,忠不足相也。」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked: Meng Tian was loyal to the Qin and yet he was executed. What good is loyalty?
Yangzi said: In building the Great Wall, he dug trenches through the mountains and dammed up gorges, beginning from Lin Tao and reaching Liao Shui. His accomplishments were not sufficient and the number of corpses was excessive. His loyalty is not worth admiring.

11 淵騫卷第... :
或問:「呂不韋其智矣乎,以人易貨。」曰:「誰謂不韋智者與?以國易宗。不韋之盜,穿窬之雄乎?穿窬也者,吾見擔石矣,未見洛陽也。」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked: What about Lü Buwei's wisdom? He traded in people to make his profits.
Yangzi said: Who ever said Lü Buwei was wise? He traded in court politics to become ancestor to the short-lived Qin Dynasty. Was Lü Buwei's thievery not like that of a cunning burglar who breaks in through a hole in the wall? I've seen heists as big as three bushels, but never one as big as Luoyang!

12 淵騫卷第... :
秦將白起不仁,奚用為也。長平之戰,四十萬人死,蚩尤之亂,不過於此矣。原野厭人之肉,川谷流人之血,將不仁,奚用為!「翦?」曰:「始皇方獵六國,而翦牙欸!」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone said: General Bai Qi of the Qin was inhumane. Why was he put to use?
Yangzi said: In the battle at Chang Ping 400,000 men were killed. Even the chaos caused by Chi You did not surpass this. The plains and fields were covered with human flesh, the rivers and hollows flowed with blood. A general so inhumane, how could he be put to use!
The other asked: What about Wang Jian?
Yangzi said: Qin Shi Huang hunted the six kingdoms and Wang Jian was his teeth!

13 淵騫卷第... :
或問:「要離非義者與?不以家辭國。」曰:「離也,火妻滅子,以求反於慶忌,實蛛蝥之劘也。焉可謂之義也?」「政?」「為嚴氏犯韓,刺相俠累,曼面為姊,實壯士之靡也,焉可謂之義也?」「軻?」「為丹奉於期之首、燕督亢之圖,入不測之秦,實刺客之靡也,焉可謂之義也?」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked: Was Yao Li not one who was righteous (yi)? He did not even use his family as an excuse to refuse the commands of his kingdom.
Yangzi said: He allowed his wife and children to be burned to ashes in order to get close enough to Qing Ji to assassinate him. Though he might be outstanding among spiders and insects, what in his actions can be considered to be righteous?
The other asked about Nie Zheng.
Yangzi said: He rebelled against the Han for Yan Sui, killed head minister Han Xialei, and disfigured himself to protect his sister. Though he might be outstanding among brave men, what in his actions can be considered to be righteous?
The other asked about: Jing Ke.
Yangzi said: At the request of Prince Dan of Yan, he offered the King of Qin the head of Fan Yuqi and a map of Dukang in Yan, and entered into Qin with being suspected. Though he might be outstanding among assassins, what in his actions can be considered to be righteous?

14 淵騫卷第... :
或問:「儀、秦學乎鬼谷術,而習乎縱橫言,安中國者,各十餘年,是夫?」曰:「詐人也,聖人惡諸。」曰:「孔子讀而儀、秦行,何如也?」曰:「甚矣!鳳鳴而鷙翰也。」「然則子貢不為歟?」曰:「亂而不解,子貢恥諸;說而不富貴,儀、秦恥諸。」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked: Zhang Yi and Su Qin studied the arts of Gui Gu and were practiced in the doctrines of the horizontal and vertical alliances among the states. They brought peace to the central kingdoms for more than ten years. What about them?
Yangzi said: They were tacticians. The sage detests them.
The other said: What about reading the teachings of Confucius but implementing the teachings of Zhang Yi and Su Qin?
Yangzi said: What nonsense! That's like having the cry of a phoenix and the feathers of a hawk.
The other said: Isn't that what Zigong wanted to do?
Yangzi said: Zigong was ashamed of not being able to bring order to troubled times. Zhang Yi and Su Qin were ashamed of engaging in disputations and not obtaining wealth and honor.

15 淵騫卷第... :
或曰:「儀、秦其才矣乎!跡不蹈已。」曰:「昔在任人,帝曰難之,亦才矣。才乎才,非吾徒之才也。」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked: Were Zhang Yi and Su Qin not talented? They did not follow the paths of others.
Yangzi said: In the past, the emperors regarded artful men uneasily, even though they had talent. But talented or not, this is not our followers' kind of talent.

16 淵騫卷第... :
美行:園公、綺裏季、夏黃公、甪裏先生。言辭:婁敬、陸賈。執正:王陵、申屠嘉。折節:周昌、汲黯。守儒:轅固、申公。菑異:董相、夏侯勝、京房。
Yuan and Qian:
Excellent conduct: Yuan Gong, Qi Liji, Xia Huang, and Jiao Li.
Words and expression: Lou Jing and Lu Jia.
Upholding correct principles: Wang Ling and Shentu Jia.
Frank remonstration: Zhou Chang and Ji An.
Protecting the Ru: Yuan Gu and Shen Gong.
Disasters and strange phenomena: Dong Zhongshu, Xiahou Sheng, and Jing Feng.

17 淵騫卷第... :
或問「蕭、曹」。曰:「蕭也規,曹也隨。」「滕、灌、樊、酈?」曰:「俠介。」「叔孫通?」曰:「槧人也。」「爰盎?」曰:「忠不足而談有餘。」「晁錯?」曰:「愚。」「酷吏?」曰:「虎哉!虎哉!角而翼者也。」「貨殖?」曰:「蚊。」曰:「血國三千,使捋疏、飲水、褐博,沒齒無愁也?」或問「循吏」。曰:「吏也。」「遊俠?」曰:「竊國靈也。」「佞幸?」曰:「不料而已。」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked: What about Xiao He and Cao Shen?
Yangzi said: Xiao He made the rules, Cao Shen followed them.
What about Teng Houying, Guan Ying, Fan Kuai and Li Shang?
Yangzi said: They were chivalrous and honorable.
The other said: Shu Suntong?
Yangzi said: He was a fake copy.
The other said: Yuan Ang?
Yangzi said: His loyalty was insufficient and his talk was excessive.
The other said: Zhao Cuo?
Yangzi said: He was stupid.
The other said: Ruthless officials?
Yangzi said: Tigers! Tigers—with horns and wings!
The other said: The profiteers?
Yangzi said: Mosquitoes! They've always sucked the kingdom's blood dry, making people have to pick wild grasses to eat, drink [only] water and wear coarse clothing. How can they live until their teeth fall out with nothing to worry about?
The other asked about compliant officials.
Yangzi said: They were officials indeed.
The other asked about wandering swordsmen.
Yangzi said: They stole the kingdom's authority.
The other said: Flatters who curried favor?
Yangzi said: They are not even worth consideration.

18 淵騫卷第... :
或問「近世社稷之臣」。曰:「若張子房之智,陳平之無悟,絳侯勃之果,霍將軍之勇,終之以禮樂,則可謂社稷之臣矣。」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked about recent generations' ministers to the alters of the gods of earth and grain.
Yangzi said: If you took Zhang Liang's wisdom, Chen Ping's infallibility, Marquis Bo of Jiang's decisiveness, and Huo Guang's courage, then finished them off with li and music—that could indeed be called a minister of the altars to the gods of earth and grain.
或問:「公孫弘、董仲舒孰邇?」曰:「仲舒欲為而不可得者也,弘容而已矣。」
The other said: Between Gongsun Hong and Dong Zhongshu, who was closer to this ideal?
Yangzi said: Dong Zhongshu had the desire but couldn't attain it. Gongsun Hong had the right appearance and that's all.

19 淵騫卷第... :
或問「近世名卿」。曰:「若張廷尉之平,雋京兆之見,尹扶風之潔,王子貢之介,斯近世名卿矣。」「將。」曰:「若條侯之守,長平、冠軍之征伐,博陸之持重,可謂近世名將矣。」「請問古。」曰:「鼓之以道德,征之以仁義,輿尸、血刃,皆所不為也。」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked about reputable high-ranking officers of recent generations.
Yangzi said: Zhang Shizhi's fairness, Juan Buyi's perceptiveness, Yin Wengui's purity, and Wang Zun's self-reliance —these were the qualities of the recent generation's reputable high-ranking officials.
The other asked about military generals.
Yangzi said: Zhou Yafu's (the Marquis of Tiao) defense strategy, Wei Qing (Marquis of Chang Ping) and Huo Qubing's (Marquis Zhongli) attack strategy, and Huo Guang's (Marquis of Bo Liu) grasp of honor—these were the qualities of reputable military generals of the recent generation.
The other asked about the ancients.
Yangzi said: They urged people on with the Dao and de, and tamed them with ren and yi. Cartloads of corpses and bloodstained knives—these were not of their doing.

20 淵騫卷第... :
張騫、蘇武之奉使也,執節沒身,不屈王命,雖古之膚使,其猶劣諸。
Yuan and Qian:
Zhang Qian and Su Wu were admirable envoys. They maintained their integrity, were unconcerned with death and never abandoned their ruler's commands. Even the praiseworthy envoys of the ancients were inferior to them.

21 淵騫卷第... :
世稱東方生之盛也,言不純師,行不純表,其流風、遺書,蔑如也。或曰:「隱者也。」曰:「昔之隱者,吾聞其語矣,又聞其行矣。」或曰:「隱道多端。」曰:「固也!聖言聖行,不逢其時,聖人隱也。賢言賢行,不逢其時,賢者隱也。談言談行,而不逢其時,談者隱也。昔者箕子之漆其身也,狂接輿之被其發也,欲去而恐罹害者也。箕子之《洪範》,接輿之歌鳳也哉!」或問:「東方生名過實者,何也?」曰:「應諧,不窮,正諫,穢德。應諧似優,不窮似哲,正諫似直,穢德似隱。」「請問名。」曰:「詼達。」「惡比?」曰:「非夷尚容,依隱玩世,其滑稽之雄乎!」或問:「柳下惠非朝隱者與?」曰:「君子謂之不恭。古者高餓顯,下祿隱。」
Yuan and Qian:
The world lauds the exuberance of Dong Fangshuo's life. But in speaking, he was not sincere enough to be a teacher, and in action, he was not a sincere enough to be a role model. The remnants of his writings that are still floating around should be discarded.
Someone said: He was a hermit.
Yangzi said: The hermits of ancient times—I've heard of their sayings and their deeds.
The other said: The path (dao) of the hermit has many beginnings.
Yangzi said: Indeed! If the words and actions of the sage do not meet with their proper time, then the sage becomes a hermit. If the words and actions of the worthy do not meet with their proper time, then the worthy become hermits. If the words and actions of the jester do not meet with his times, then the jester becomes a hermit. In the ancient past, Ji Zi covered himself in lacquer and Jie Yu unbound his hair and feigned madness. Both feared meeting with harm and desired to flee. Ji Zi wrote the Hongfan (The Great Plan), and Jie Yu sang "Phoenix!" to Confucius.
The other asked: Why was Dong Fangshuo's reputation so exaggerated then?
Yangzi said: He answered with jokes, was never at a loss for words, made straightforward remonstrations, and had a dirty character (de). Answering with jokes, he seemed like an actor. Never at a loss for words, he appeared to be philosophical. With his straightforward remonstrations he appeared genuine. And with a dirty character, he seemed like a hermit.
The other said: May I ask, then, what would be a more appropriate name for him.
Yangzi said: He was a jester.
The other said: How does he compare to hermits of the past?
Yangzi said: He rejected Bo Yi and Shuqi's suffering as stupid and esteemed comfort, staying in the shade and making fun of the world. But wasn't he really the height of ridiculousness?
The other asked: Was Liu Xiahui not a hermit at court?
Yangzi said: A junzi would say that he was undignified. Among the ancients, one who was hungry yet prominent was highly esteemed; one who was prosperous and yet reclusive was considered lowly.

22 淵騫卷第... :
妄譽,仁之賊也;妄毀,義之賊也。賊仁近鄉原,賊義近鄉訕。
Yuan and Qian:
Flattery is the thief of ren, and slander is the thief of yi. The thief of ren is close to the village worthy. The thief of yi is close to the village detractor.

23 淵騫卷第... :
或問:「子,蜀人也,請人。」曰:「有李仲元者,人也。」「其為人也,奈何?」曰:「不屈其意,不累其身。」曰:「是夷、惠之徒與?」曰:「不夷不惠,可否之間也。」「如是,則奚名之不彰也?」曰:「無仲尼,則西山之餓夫與東國之絀臣惡乎聞?」曰:「王陽、貢禹遇仲尼乎?」曰:「明星皓皓,華藻之力也與?」曰:「若是,則奚為不自高?」曰:「皓皓者,己也;引而高之者,天也。子欲自高邪?仲元,世之師也。見其貌者,肅如也;聞其言者,愀如也;觀其行者,穆如也。鄲聞以德詘人矣,未聞以德詘於人也。仲元,畏人也。」
Yuan and Qian:
Someone asked: You are from Shu. May I ask about men from Shu.
Yangzi said: There was Li Zhongyuan.
The other said: As a man, what was he like?
Yangzi said: He is will was unbending in purpose and did not implicate himself in any wrongdoing.
The other said: Was he a follower of Bo Yi or Liuxia Hui?
Yangzi said: Neither like Bo Yi or Liuxia Hui, he was one who had no preconceptions the permissible and impermissible.
The other said: If this is so, then why was his reputation not well-known?
Without Confucius, how would anyone ever heard of the men who starved in the western mountains or the minister who was dismissed in the eastern kingdom.
[The other] said: What if Wang Yang and Gong Yu had met Confucius?
Yangzi said: Does the morning star shine so brightly only because of it position high in the sky?
The other said: This being so, why did he not obtain a high position himself?
Yangzi said: What shines brightly is oneself. It is Tian that leads one to attain a high position. Do you desire to put yourself in a high position? Li Zhongyuan was the teacher of a generation. His demeanor was solemn, his words aroused emotion, and his conduct was majestic. I had heard of using de to make others yield, but I had yet to hear of using de to yield oneself to others. Li Zhongyuan was an awesome man.
或曰:「育、賁。」曰:「育、賁也,人畏其力,而侮其德。」「請條。」曰:「非正不視,非正不聽,非正不言,非正不行。夫能正其視聽言行者,昔吾先師之所畏也。如視不視,聽不聽,言不言,行不行,雖有育、賁,其猶侮諸!」
The other said: What about Xia Yu and Meng Ben?
Yangzi said: People were in awe of Xia Yu and Meng Ben's physical strength, but ridiculed their de.
The other said: Could you please explain in detail?
Yangzi said: Don't look at what is improper, don't listen to what is improper, don't say what is improper, and don't do what is improper. The teachers of the ancient past stood in awe of those who could see, hear, speak and act [according to] what was proper. If you look at what should not be looked at, listen to what should not be heard, say what should not be said, and do what should not be done, then even if you had Xia Yu or Meng Ben's [strength] you will still only be ridiculed.

URN: ctp:yangzi-fayan/juan-shi-yi