Analects 5.10

Original Text:

宰予昼寝子曰朽木不可雕也粪土之墙不可杇也于予与何诛子曰始吾于人也听其言而信其行今吾于人也听其言而观其行于予与改是

Translation:

Other Translations:

Zai Wo was sleeping during the daytime. The Master said, “Rotten wood cannot be carved, and a wall of dung cannot be plastered. As for Zai Wo, what would be the use of reprimanding him?”

The Master added, “At first, when evaluating people, I would listen to their words and then simply trust that the corresponding conduct would follow. Now when I evaluate people I listen to their words but then closely observe their conduct. It is my experience with Zai Wo that has brought about this change.”

Confucius, & Slingerland, E. (2003). Analects: With selections from traditional commentaries. Hackett Publishing.

Zai Yu (Zai Wo) was given to sleeping in the daytime. The Master said, Rotten wood can’t be carved; a wall of stinking earth can’t be troweled. What’s the use of trying to reprimand Yu?

The Master said, At first, when it came to people, I listened to their words and trusted their conduct. Now, when it comes to people, I listen to their words and observe their conduct. It was Yu who brought about this change.

Confucius, & Watson, B. (2007). The Analects of Confucius. Columbia University Press.

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