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Words of Wisdom

From the Sacred Works of Mencius: Gaozi I - Part 2 of 2

2019-12-25
Language:Chinese(正體中文)

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Mencius said: “According to the feelings that come from nature, people will act with goodness. This is what I mean in saying that human nature is good. If someone does evil, it is not the fault of their natural endowment. The feeling of compassion belongs to all men; as does that of shame; and that of reverence and respect; and that of right and wrong. The feeling of compassion implies the principle of benevolence; that of shame implies the principle of righteousness; that of reverence and respect implies the principle of courtesy; and that of right and wrong implies the principle of wisdom. Benevolence, righteousness, courtesy, and wisdom are not infused into us from without. We are certainly furnished with them, but we don’t often think of them. Hence it is said, ‘Seek and you will find them. Neglect and you will lose them.’ … It is said in the Book of Poetry, ‘Heaven gave birth to mankind, and gave each thing its specific laws. People follow the permanent principles and love this admirable virtue.’”
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