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Mozi 墨子

卷一 修身 Book 1 - Self-Cultivation

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Of a lord warring: though there are tactics, should not courage be the seeds of their campaigns? Of mourning: though there be ritual, should not sorrow be the seed? Of scholars: though they have learning, should not conduct be their seed? For this reason, seeds that are not placed securely, there will not be a bountiful harvest.

If those near do not feel kinship toward you, then those farther away wouldn't bother coming near you. If your family is not cooperative, do not bother befriending those outside of it. When your affairs are without end after starting, there is no use in endeavoring to take on many enterprises. To examine something simple and yet be ignorant of it would make pursuance of wider knowledge pointless. For this reason, past kings' rulership was the whole of the world, and this was certainly due to the fact that they examined that which was near and brought close those from far away. A noble person examines what is close by and finds that those close by are cultivated[1]. When uncultivated behavior is seen, or slanderous activities appear, among those close, they correct themselves. By this, enmity is saved as well as conduct being cultivated.

The words of malicious slander should not be allowed to enter the ear. A defensive voice should not be allowed to come out of the mouth. The want to gravely injure people should not be allowed to exist in the heart. If this is accomplished, though there be people who cynically expose others, they would be without people who would align with them.

Chinese text: This work was published before January 1, 1923, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.
English translation: This work is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 license, which allows free use, distribution, and creation of derivatives, so long as the license is unchanged and clearly noted, and the original author is attributed. (

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