Analects 17.1

Original Text:



Other Translations:

Yang Huo wanted to have an audience with Confucius, but Confucius would not see him. Yang Huo therefore sent Confucius a suckling pig as a gift. Confucius waited until Yang Huo was not at home before going to offer his thanks, but ended up running into Yang Huo on the road.

Yang Huo called out to Confucius, “Come! I would like to speak with you.” [After Confucius approached him,] he said, “Clutching a treasure to one’s bosom, and thereby letting the state go to ruin—could this be called Good?”

Confucius replied, “No, it could not.”

“Being eager to serve, but repeatedly missing opportunities to do so—could this be called wise?”

Confucius replied, “No, it could not.”

“The days and months are slipping away, and time is not on our side.”

“Very well,” Confucius said. “I will enter official service.”

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

Yang Huo (Yang Hu?) wanted to see Confucius, but Confucius refused to see him. He then sent Confucius a suckling pig. Confucius, choosing a time when Yang was not at home, went to express thanks for the gift, but he happened to meet Yang in the street. Addressing Confucius, Yang Huo said, Come—I have something to say to you. You hide in your heart a wealth of talent and yet let your country go astray. Can that be called humaneness? Of course not! You long to hold office and yet time and again miss the chance to do so. Can that be called wisdom? Of course not! The days and months fly by, time does not work in our favor!

Confucius said, Very well—I will take public office.

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