Book 4 provides some interesting insights into Confucius’s thinking about goodness – an ambiguous concept that even he was unable (or perhaps unwilling) to clearly define. In addition to plenty of advice on learning and the practice of filial piety, the book also features for the first time in the Analects examples of the sage’s condemnation of the profit motive – which, according to some commentators at least, not held back China’s economic development for two thousand years but also made the nation ill-prepared to fight off the invasions of the Western imperialist powers during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Please click on the links below for the complete analysis.
Analects Book 4: translation
Analects Book 4: overview
Analects Book 4: on leadership
Analects Book 4: on learning
Analects Book 4: on goodness
Analects Book 4 virtue never stands alone
Analects Book 4: on filial piety
Analects Book 4: on profit