The Analects

The Analects

The Analects
5

This lively new translation with clear explanatory notes by one of the foremost scholars of classical Chinese provides the ideal introduction to the Analects for readers who have no previous knowledge of the Chinese language and philosophical traditions.

"How dare I claim to be a sage or a benevolent man?"

By constructing the philosophy expressed through The Analects, Confucius might well dare to make such a claim. The Analects are a collection of Confucius' sayings, compiled by his pupils shortly after his death in 497 B.C., and they reflect the extent to which Confucius held up a moral ideal for all men. The aim is the perfection of one's moral character, the method one of arduous pursuit of such moral attributes as benevolence, wisdom, courage; the result is no recompense either in this life or the next – to follow the Way must be its own reward. A harsh philosophy perhaps, but shining through it is the splendid intellect and spirit of one of the most reasonable and humane thinkers of all time.

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