Meng Yizi (孟懿子) is said to have been one of two young nobles from the state of Lu who were entrusted by their father to Confucius for tutoring when he was starting out as a teacher. Meng subsequently rose to become head of the Mengsun (孟孙) clan, one of the notorious Three Families that were the real power in behind the throne of the state of Lu. In Chapter 5 of Book 2, Confucius criticizes him obliquely for holding over-elaborate ritual ceremonies that violated the conventions of the rites.
Appearances in the Analects of Confucius
Book 2, Chapter 5
Meng Yizi asked the Master about filial devotion. The Master said: “Never disobey.” While Fan Chi was driving him in his chariot, the Master told him: “Meng Yizi asked me about filial devotion and I replied: ‘Never disobey.’” Fan Chi asked: “What does that mean?” The Master replied: “When your parents are alive, serve them according to the rites. When they die, bury them according to the rites and make sacrifices to them according to the rites.”