Analects on Humaneness 仁 (rén)

The Master said, “Those who are clever in their words and pretentious in their appearance, yet are humane, are few indeed.” [1.3]

子曰:「巧言令色,鮮矣仁!」

Fan Chi asked about wisdom. The Master said, “Devote yourself to what must rightly be done for the people; respect spiritual beings, while keeping at a distance from them. This may be called wisdom.” He asked about humaneness. The Master said, “One who is humane first does what is difficult and only thereafter concerns himself with success. This may be called humaneness.” (6.20)

樊遲問知。子曰:「務民之義,敬鬼神而遠之,可謂知矣。」問仁。曰:「仁者先難而後獲,可謂仁矣。」

The Master said, “One who is not humane is able neither to abide for long in hardship nor to abide for long in joy. The humane find peace in humaneness; the knowing derive profit from humaneness.” (4.2)

子曰:「不仁者不可以久處約,不可以長處樂。仁者安仁,知者利仁。」

The Master said, “Wealth and honor are what people desire, but one should not abide in them if it cannot be done in accordance with the Way. Poverty and lowliness are what people dislike, but one should not avoid them if it cannot be done in accordance with the Way. If the noble person rejects humaneness, how can he fulfill that name? The noble person does not abandon humaneness for so much as the space of a meal. Even when hard-pressed he is bound to it, bound to it even in time of danger.”(4:5)

子曰:「富與貴,是人之所欲也;不以其道得之,不處也。貧與賤,是人之所惡也;不以其道得之,不去也。君子去仁,惡乎成名?君子無終食之間違仁,造次必於是,顛沛必於是。」

It is humaneness that brings beauty to one’s surroundings. Should one not make the choice to abide in humaneness, how could one become known? (4:1)

子曰:「里仁為美。擇不處仁,焉得知?」

The Master said, “The wise take joy in water; the humane take joy in mountains. The wise are active; the humane are tranquil. The wise enjoy; the humane endure.” (6:21)

子曰:「知者樂水,仁者樂山。知者動,仁者靜。知者樂,仁者壽。」

Meng Wu Bo asked whether Zilu was humane. The Master said, “I do not know.” He asked again. The Master said, “As for You, he might be employed to manage the military levies in a state of a thousand chariots, but whether he is humane, I do not know.” “What about Qiu?” The Master said, “In a town of a thousand households or a family of a hundred chariots, he could be employed as a governor, but whether he is humane I do not know.” “What about Chi?” The Master said, “As for Chi, when he puts on his sash and takes his place in court, he might be engaged in conversation with the guests, but whether he is humane I do not know.” (5.7)

孟武伯問子路仁乎?子曰:「不知也。」又問。子曰:「由也,千乘之國,可使治其賦也,不知其仁也。」「求也何如?」子曰:「求也,千室之邑,百乘之家,可使為之宰也,不知其仁也。」「赤也何如?」子曰:「赤也,束帶立於朝,可使與賓客言也,不知其仁也。」

Zigong said, “What would you say of someone who broadly benefits the people and was able to help everyone? Could he be called humane?” The Master said, “How would this be a matter of humaneness? Surely he would have to be a sage? Even Yao and Shun were concerned about such things. As for humaneness – you want to establish yourself; then help others to establish themselves. You want to develop yourself; then help others to develop themselves. Being able to recognize oneself in others, one is on the way to being humane.” [6.28]

子貢曰:「如有博施於民而能濟眾,何如?可謂仁乎?」子曰:「何事於仁!必也聖乎!堯舜其猶病諸!夫仁者,己欲立而立人,己欲達而達人。能近取譬,可謂仁之方也已。」

The Master said, “Is humaneness far away? If I want to be humane, then humaneness is here.” [7.29]

子曰:「仁遠乎哉?我欲仁,斯仁至矣。」

The Master said, “As for Hui, he went for three months without his mind’s departing from humaneness. As for the others, they might persist for a day or a month, but that is all.” [6.5]

子曰:「回也,其心三月不違仁,其餘則日月至焉而已矣。」

The Master said, “I have not seen one who loved humaneness, nor one who hated inhumanity. One who loved humaneness would value nothing more highly. One who hated inhumanity would be humane so as not to allow inhumanity to affect his person. Is there someone whose strength has for the space of a single day been devoted to humaneness? I have not seen one whose strength was insufficient. It may have happened, but I have not seen it.” [4.6]

子曰:「我未見好仁者,惡不仁者。好仁者,無以尚之;惡不仁者,其為仁矣,不使不仁者加乎其身。有能一日用其力於仁矣乎?我未見力不足者。蓋有之矣,我未之見也。」

The Master said, “If one is human yet not humane – what can one have to do with rites? If one is human yet not humane – what can one have to do with music?” (3.3)

子曰:「人而不仁,如禮何?人而不仁,如樂何?」

Yan Yuan asked about humaneness. The Master said, “Through mastering oneself and returning to ritual one becomes humane. If for a single day one can master oneself and return to ritual, the whole world will return to humaneness. Does the practice of humaneness come from oneself or from others?” Yan Yuan said, “May I ask about the specifics of this?” The Master said, “Look at nothing contrary to ritual; listen to nothing contrary to ritual; say nothing contrary to ritual; do nothing contrary to ritual.” Yan Yuan said, “Though unintelligent, Hui requests leave to put these words into practice.” [12.1]

顏淵問仁。子曰:「克己復禮為仁。一日克己復禮,天下歸仁焉。為仁由己,而由人乎哉?」顏淵曰:「請問其目。」子曰:「非禮勿視,非禮勿聽,非禮勿言,非禮勿動。」顏淵曰:「回雖不敏,請事斯語矣。」

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