Tag Archives: Yan Hui on Confucius

Leadership lessons from Confucius: temper and tend

temper and tend

顏淵喟然嘆曰:「仰之彌高,鑽之彌堅,瞻之在前,忽焉在後!夫子循循然善誘人,博我以文,約我以禮。欲罷不能,既竭吾才,如有所立,卓爾。雖欲從之,末由也已!」
Yan Hui said with a heavy sigh: “The more I contemplate it, the higher it seems; the deeper I probe it, the harder it becomes; when I catch a glimpse of it in front of me, it’s suddenly behind me. Our master knows how to guide people skillfully and methodically. He broadens my mind with culture and restrains me with ritual. Even if I wanted to stop, I could not. Just as all my talents are exhausted, there seems to be something new towering above me. But although I long to follow it, I can’t find a way to it.”

The greatest idea in the world is worth nothing if it isn’t channeled in the right direction through discipline. That brilliant novel you have mapped out in your mind will never see the light of the day if you lack the willpower to pound away at your keyboard day after day. And that bright fiery potential that burned in your eyes when you were in your twenties will be extinguished by the time you reach middle age if you don’t temper and tend it. Continue reading Leadership lessons from Confucius: temper and tend