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Legalism -> Shang Jun Shu -> Fixing of Rights and Duties -> 5

圣人Now the former sages made writings and transmitted them to later generations,
and it is necessary to accept these as authoritative,
so that one may know what is conveyed by established terminology.
Should they not be accepted as authoritative
and should people discuss them according to ideas of their own mind,
then until their death they will not succeed in understanding the terminology and its meaning.
圣人天下Therefore did the sages set up officers and officials for the laws and mandates, who should be authoritative in the empire,
in order to define everyone's rights and duties,
so that these being definite,
the very crafty would become faithful and trustworthy,
and the people would all become honest and guileless,
each one restraining himself.
For indeed, the defining of everybody's rights and duties
is the road that leads to orderly government,
but the not defining of everybody's rights and duties
is the road that leads to disorder.
So where there is a tendency towards order, there cannot be disorder, and where there is a tendency towards disorder, there cannot be order.
Indeed, where there is a tendency towards disorder and one governs it, the disorder will only increase,
but where there is a tendency towards order and one governs it, there will be order.
Therefore, the sage kings governed order and did not govern disorder.


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