A true gentleman

子曰:「剛毅木訥,近仁。」
Confucius said: “Firmness, determination, simplicity, modesty: these bring us close to goodness.”

子路問曰:「何如斯可謂之士矣?」子曰:「切切偲偲,怡怡如也,可謂士矣。朋友切切偲偲,兄弟怡怡。」
Zilu asked: “What qualities must you possess to be called a true gentleman?” Confucius said: “Supportive, encouraging, and affectionate: such a man deserves to be called a true gentleman. Supportive and encouraging towards his friends and affectionate towards his brothers.”

There is no big mystical secret to achieving goodness. Firmness, determination, simplicity, and modesty go a long way to help you achieving that state.

Add being supportive and encouraging to your friends and affectionate towards your family members into the mix, and you have the potential to become a “true gentleman”.

By the way, Chapter XXVIII is very similar in style to Chapter XX of Book 13.

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