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Below is a digest of famous or interesting (to schist) passages from the Chinese philosopher Mencius. There is a separate node for the philosopher Kao-tzu (Gaozi), all traces of whom appear in Mencius' book.

  • Famous stories
    • Book Ia: 3: The beginning contains Mencius' famous quip about the two soldiers running away. The end contains another famous quip, "It was not me, it was the weapon."
    • Book Ia: 7: Begins with the story of the ox on its way to being slaughtered, one of the most famous passages in the book. The remainder may possibly tire you, but give it a try just once.
    • Book IIa: 2: The farmer who pulled up his crops.
    • Book IVb: 33: The poor man who put on airs in front of his family.
    • Book VIIb: 30: the sandal misplaced in the window
  • Famous analogies
  • Famous one-liners
    • Book IIa: 3: “When one by force subdues men, they do not submit to him in heart.”
    • Book IIa: 7: “Emperor Shun regarded virtue as the common property of himself and others.”
    • Book IIb: 9: “The errors of the superior men of old were like eclipses of the sun and moon.”
    • Book IIIa: 1: "They were men; I am a man."
    • Book IIIa: 2: "the grass must bend when the wind blows upon it."
    • Book IVa: 8: Natural disasters not as dangerous as the disasters one creates for oneself.
    • Book IVa: 9: "The path of duty lies in what is near, and men seek for it in what is remote."
    • Book IVa: 17: "The whole kingdom is drowning!"
    • Book IVa: 22: "Men's being ready with their tongues arises simply from their not having been reproved."
    • Book IVa: 23: "The evil of men is that they like to be teachers of others."
    • Book Va: 3: "A benevolent man does not lay up anger."
    • Book Va: 8/9: "the inventions of men fond of strange things"
    • Book Vb: 5: "Marriage is not entered into for the sake of being attended to by the wife."
    • Book Vb: 7: "ministers of the market-place and well", and "of the grass and plants"
    • Book Vb: 8: "making friends with the ancients"
    • Book VIIa: 18: "Men who are possessed of intelligent virtue and prudence in affairs will generally be found to have been in sickness and troubles."
    • Book VIIa: 20: "The superior man has three things in which he delights, and to be ruler over the kingdom is not one of them."
    • Book VIIa: 27: "If a man can prevent the evils of hunger and thirst from being any evils to his mind, he need not have any sorrow about not being equal to other men."
    • Book VIIa: 44: "He who advances with precipitation will retire with speed."
    • Book VIIb: 3: "It would be better to be without the Book of History than to give entire credit to it."
    • Book VIIb: 21: "The wild grass fills up your mind."
    • Book VIIb: 29: "He was just qualified to bring death upon himself, but for nothing more."
  • ”Soft-core” Chinese philosophy. (Things Western pop-culture doesn’t necessarily associate with Confucianism)
    • Book IIa: 2: The “unperturbed mind”.
    • Book Ib: 12: The need for gentleness in dealing with those beneath one in rank.
    • Book IVa: 17: How do you deal with your sister-in-law about to drown? Isn't a well-behaved man supposed to avoid touching a woman?
    • Book IVb: 12: Greatness stems from a childlike quality.
    • Book IVa: 18: Teach your neighbor's son and have your neighbor teach yours.
    • Book IVb: 18: Confucius' praise of water.
    • Book VIIb: 2: no righteous wars, merely wars that are better or worse
    • Book VIIb: 14: The ruler is the least important part of a country.
  • Practical advice on how to deal with your boss/ruler. (Don’t pooh-pooh this till you’ve lived in Chinese society for a while!)
  • Hard-core Confucian political philosophy and such maxims as you'd expect from a stern wise man
  • Other

Your suggestions for further additions are cordially invited. Please /msg schist.

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