Confucius, aka Kong Qiu, Zhongni, K'ung Fu-tzu or Kong Fuzi

Confucius, aka Kong Qiu, Zhongni, K'ung Fu-tzu or Kong Fuzi
550 B.C.
478 B.C.

Chinese Moral Teacher, Philosopher, Thinker, Political Figure, Educator, and Founder of the Ru School of Chinese thought, his teachings preserved in the collection of aphorisms known as Lunyu or Analects

Author Quotes

Do I possess all knowledge? No, I do not. But if a simple peasant puts a question to me, and I come up empty, I attack the question from both ends until I have gotten to the bottom of it.

If proper in their own conduct, what difficulty would they have in governing? But if not able to be proper in their own conduct, how can they demand such conduct from others?

Those near at hand are pleased, and those at a distance are drawn to you. (When governing effectively.)

Do not impose upon others what you yourself do not want.

If truly efficacious (effective) people were put in charge of governing for a hundred years, they would be able to overcome violence and dispense with killing altogether.

To be poor without feeling ill will is much more difficult than to be wealthy without being arrogant.

Do not plan the policies of an office you do not hold.

In expressing oneself, it is simply a matter of getting the point across.

To fail to cultivate excellence, to fail to practice what I learn, on coming to understand what is appropriate in the circumstances to fail to attend to it, and to be unable to reform conduct that is not productive?these things I worry over.

Don?t try to rush things, and don?t get distracted by small opportunities. If you try to rush things, you won?t achieve your ends; if you get distracted by small opportunities, you won?t succeed in the more important of government. (On governing effectively.)

In instruction, there is no such thing as social classes.

To go into battle with people who have not been properly trained is to forsake them.

Don?t worry about not being acknowledged by others; worry about failing to acknowledge them.

In mourning, it is better to express real grief than to worry over formal details.

To know what you know and know what you do not know?this then is wisdom.

Exemplary persons are easy to serve but difficult to please. If one tries to please them with conduct that is not consistent with Dao (noble path, the way), they will not be pleased. In employing others, they use them according to their abilities. Petty persons are difficult to serve but easy to please. If one tries to please them with conduct that is not consistent with the way, they will be pleased anyway. But in employing others, they expect them to be good at everything.

It?s rare indeed for someone to go wrong due to personal restraint.

To take doing one?s utmost, making good on one?s word, and seeking out what is appropriate as one?s main concerns, is to accumulate excellence.

Exemplary persons are steadfast in the face of adversity, while petty persons are engulfed by it.

Ji Kangzi was troubled by the number of thieves, and asked Confucius for advice. Confucius replied to him, If you yourself were not so greedy, the people could not be paid to steal.

Wealth and honor are what people want, but if they are the consequence of deviating from Dao (noble path, the way), I would have no part in them. Poverty and disgrace are what people deplore, but if they are the consequence of staying on the way, I would not avoid them.

Exemplary persons associating openly with others are not partisan; petty persons being partisan do not associate openly with others.

Learning without due reflection leads to perplexity.

Where everyone despises a person, you must look into the matter carefully; when everyone celebrates a person, you must also look into it carefully.

Exemplary persons cherish fairness; petty persons cherish the thought of gain.

Author Picture
First Name
Confucius, aka Kong Qiu, Zhongni, K'ung Fu-tzu or Kong Fuzi
Birth Date
550 B.C.
Death Date
478 B.C.
Bio

Chinese Moral Teacher, Philosopher, Thinker, Political Figure, Educator, and Founder of the Ru School of Chinese thought, his teachings preserved in the collection of aphorisms known as Lunyu or Analects