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Confucian Analects

Confucian Analects [Kindle Edition]

5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product Description

Product Description

The superior man bends his attention to what is radical. That being established, all practical courses naturally grow up. Filial piety and fraternal submission,-are they not the root of all benevolent actions? To rule a country of a thousand chariots, there must be reverent attention to business, and sincerity; economy in expenditure, and love for men; and the employment of the people at the proper seasons. If a man withdraws his mind from the love of beauty, and applies it as sincerely to the love of the virtuous; if, in serving his parents, he can exert his utmost strength; if, in serving his prince, he can devote his life; if, in his intercourse with his friends, his words are sincere:-although men say that he has not learned, I will certainly say that he has. Without an acquaintance with the rules of Propriety, it is impossible for the character to be established. Without knowing the force of words, it is impossible to know men.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1019 KB
  • Print Length: 92 pages
  • Publisher: Sublime Books (29 Aug 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00N5LPL00
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #714,624 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Analects: By James Legge. 13 Nov 2010
James Legge (1815-1897), was a Christian missionary of Scottish birth, and the first professor of Chinese language and literature at Oxford University. He travelled extensively in China, and sought to understand the people he intended to convert, through their already existing philosophical and spiritual traditions. With Max Muller, he worked to translate numerous Asian texts for the series entitled 'Sacred Books of the East'. He also translated two other books associated with Confucius - the 'Doctrine of the Mean (Zhong Yong), and the 'Great Learning' (Da Xue), as well as the 'I Ching', or Book of Change (commonly romanised in China as'Yijing'). He also translated the 'Mengzi', or the work of Mencius (372BC - 289BC), the loyal student of Confucius.

Legge's work are very well presented and are logical and clear. In all his works he presents the reader with ample and lavish footnotes - usually giving insight to a technical point - as well as providing the original Chinese text that he was working from at the time of translating. Of course, legge's particular contribution to this field is his enquiring mind that always searched for a deeper meaning in surface structure. A translation can be literal and shallow - this does not apply to Legge's work. Although very much of his time, nevertheless, his translations have helped to introduce a new Western audience to the subject of an often ancient Chinese wisdom.

The Analects of Confucius are a compendium of his teachings gathered sometime after his death, into one book. His teachings evolve around treating one another with 'respect' (xiao) and 'humaneness' (ren). This is achieved through the study of the classic books and subsequent meditation upon the deep meaning contained within. Continuous self-study and refinement are very much attributes of the Confucian way.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EP's tr. has always found and will continue to find readers. 25 Jun 2001
By tepi - Published on
One of the worst problems in our world is that it is infested with 'experts,' 'experts' of every variety from the diploma-wavers through to the self-appointed. The main aim of these 'experts' seems to have been to convince the world that only 'experts' have a right to say anything about anything. In this they have been extremely successful, and the mature, intelligent, and well-informed adult who may have a lot to contribute, but who is not an 'expert,' has been pretty well reduced to silence.
His mouth has been shut. He has been convinced that his own God-given brain is worthless. Even if there's something he'd like to say, he or she is afraid of being shouted down by the 'experts' and their groupies. A reading of the great Chinese thinkers would soon convince anyone of how dangerous and damaging to society 'experts' can be, but most of us don't read the Chinese. We have been conditioned to think of them as alien and to forget that they were human like us.
Ezra Pound may have been a bit crazy in some ways (who isn't?), and his Chinese readings have come in for a lot of flak, but anyone who, like Pound, loved Asian thought and set out to bring it to a West that is desperately in need of it, certainly deserves our gratitude whether they be 'expert' or non-expert.
Nobody knows how much Chinese Pound knew anyway. He certainly knew some. And anyone who knows anything at all about the complexities of Classical Chinese realizes that all readings or translations from that language, whether by professional linguists or enthusiasts such as Pound, must always be personal. There are just too many ways of validly interpreting a given line.
And as Burton Watson, who is one of the USA's foremost scholars of Ancient Chinese has pointed out in his 'Complete Works of Chuang Tzu,' since there can be no definitive interpretation neither can there be any such thing as a definitive translation. Watson, incidentally, was perfectly happy to approve Thomas Merton's readings of another great Chinese thinker, Chuang Tzu, even though Merton knew no Chinese at all. He feels that the more translations, whether expert or non- expert (when done with sincerity and love), the better. But experts such as Burton Watson, sadly, are rare, perhaps because they are the only true experts.
My own copy of Pound's 'Confucius' was purchased many years ago. It's very well-thumbed and heavily annotated, and I often return to it. I've also studied Arthur Waley's more exact translation carefully, and a few others. But the Confucian lines that stick in my mind always seem to be those of Pound, lines such as: "If the root be in confusion, nothing will be well governed" (page 33).
The "root" today is certainly "in confusion." And those who dismiss Pound on the basis of a few howlers are simply adding to the confusion. To let you in on a secret, there are many howlers - up to and including the loss of whole lines - in the translations of even reputable and well-known scholars of Chinese (though I've never found any in Burton Watson).
My advice would be to ignore the gripers, most of whom don't have direct access to the Chinese text anyway, and to read Pound's version of Confucius. He was a literary genius and got it right most of the time, and you'd learn a great deal from it.
Pound's 'Confucius' has always found and will continue to find readers. I think it's because, as Confucius says: "Those who know aren't up to those who love..." (page 216).
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