Lun Yu Introduction Table of content – The Analects of Confucius

The Master discusses with his disciples and unveil his preoccupations with society. Tr. Legge (en), Lau (en) and Couvreur (fr).

Lunyu XII. 1. (294)

How to attain to perfect virtue:– a conversation with Yen Yüan.
1. Yen Yüan asked about perfect virtue. The Master said, "To subdue one's self and return to propriety, is perfect virtue. If a man can for one day subdue himself and return to propriety, all under heaven will ascribe perfect virtue to him. Is the practice of perfect virtue from a man himself, or is it from others?"
2. Yen Yüan said, "I beg to ask the steps of that process." The Master replied, "Look not at what is contrary to propriety; listen not to what is contrary to propriety; speak not what is contrary to propriety; make no movement which is contrary to propriety." Yen Yüan then said, "Though I am deficient in intelligence and vigor, I will make it my business to practice this lesson."

Legge XII.1.

Yen Yuan asked about benevolence. The Master said, 'To return to the observance of the rites through overcoming the self constitutes benevolence. If for a single day a man could return tO the observance of the rites through overcoming himself, then the whole Empire would consider benevolence to be his. However, the practice of benevolence depends on oneself alone, and not on others.' Yen Yuan said, 'I should like you to list the items.' The Master said, 'Do not look unless it is in accordance with the rites; do not listen unless it is in accordance with the rites; do not speak unless it is in accordance with the rites; do not move unless it is in accordance with the rites.' Yen Yuan said, 'Though I am not quick, I shall direct my efforts towards what you have said.'

Lau [12:1]

Ien Iuen ayant interrogé Confucius sur la vertu d'humanité, le Maître répondit : « Se maîtriser soi-même, et revenir aux rites de la courtoisie, c'est cela le sens d'humanité. Si un jour on parvenait à se maîtriser soi-même, et à rétablir les rites, aussitôt le monde entier recouvrerait cette vertu d'humanité. Agir en ce sens, ne dépend-il pas de nous-mêmes et non des autres ? » Ien Iuen dit : « Permettez-moi de vous demander quelle est la méthode à suivre. » Le Maître répondit : « Ne rien regarder, ne rien écouter qui soit contraire aux rites de la courtoisie ; ne rien dire, ne rien faire qui soit contraire aux rites de la courtoisie. » Ien Iuen dit : « Malgré mon manque d'intelligence, permettez-moi de me mettre au service de ces préceptes. »

Couvreur XII.1.

Anon. – 2006/12/05
Lun Yu XII. 1. (294) IntroductionTable of content
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The Analects of Confucius – Lun Yu XII. 1. (294) – Chinese on/offFrançais/English
Alias the Lunyu, the Lun Yü, the Analects, les Entretiens du maître avec ses disciples.

The Book of Odes, The Analects, Great Learning, Doctrine of the Mean, Three-characters book, The Book of Changes, The Way and its Power, 300 Tang Poems, The Art of War, Thirty-Six Strategies
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